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The Guiding force of Narayanashrama Tapovanam & Center for Inner Resources Development

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

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Verses for Introspection

06 - प्रथमवयसि दत्तं
The Great Virtue of Gratitude

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प्रथमवयसि दत्तं तोयमल्पं स्मरन्तः
शिरसि निहितभारा नारिकेला नराणाम् ।
सलिलममृतकल्पं दद्युराजीवनान्तं
न हि कृतमुपकारं साधवो विस्मरन्ति ।।

 - सुभाषितम्

 prathamavayasi datta toyamalpa smaranta
 śirasi nihitabhārā nārikelā narāām |
 salilamamtakalpa dadyurājīvanānta
 na hi ktamupakāra sādhavo vismaranti ||
 - Subhāitam

Translation:

Remembering the small amount of water which it was given in its early age, the coconut trees carry nectar like water on their head throughout their life. [In the same manner] good and noble people do not forget a favour done to them.

Points for Introspection:

This shloka instils in us the great virtue of gratitude – that one should fondly remember any noble service done unto him by anybody anytime, feel grateful, and also do some noble service in return. Even the thought of such a virtue makes the mind soft and expanded.

Think of the coconut sapling. After planting it somebody had lovingly watered it regularly for a period for its sustenance and growth. Remembering this kind act of humans, the coconut when it grows tall, it carries on its head bunches of fruits, each containing nectarine water. Throughout life it stands in sun and rain, carrying the heavy load, without the least grumbling – never saying “I am tired”, never wanting to get rid of the load, but ever-ready to offer lovingly the fruits that contain the nectarine drink. To whom? To mankind, who poured water on it when it was young, when that water was absolutely essential for its survival and growth.

Such hearts are noble hearts. A noble person never forgets any benevolent service done to him. Chanting of this shloka would melt the heart and generate aspiration to imbibe gratitude.

Word Meaning:

प्रथमवयसि (prathamavayasi) = in the early age; दत्तं (dattaṁ) = given; तोयं (toyam) = water; अल्पम् (alpaṁ) = little, trifling; स्मरन्तः (smarantaḥ) = remembering; शिरसि (śirasi) = in the head; निहितभारा (nihitabhārā) = placed load; नारिकेलाः (nārikelā) = coconuts ; नराणाम् (narāṇām) = among men; सलिलम् (salilam) = water; अमृतकल्पम् (amṛtakalpaṁ) = nectar like; दद्युः ('दा' धातुः, विधि. प्र. ब. ) (dadyuḥ) = should give; आजीवनान्तम् (ājīvanāntaṁ) = throughout life; न (na) = not; हि (hi) = indeed; कृतम् (kṛtam) = done; उपकारम् (upakāraṁ) = service, help, favour; साधवः (sādhavo) = noble men; विस्मरन्ति (vismaranti) = forget.

अन्वयः

प्रथमवयसि अल्पं तोयं दत्तं स्मरन्तः, नारिकेलाः शिरसि निहितभारा, अमृतकल्पं सलिलं आजीवनान्तं नराणां दद्युः । साधवः कृतं उपकारं न हि विस्मरन्ति ।

Prathamavayasi alpaṁ toyam dattaṁ smarantaḥ, nārikelā śirasi nihitabhārā, amṛtakalpaṁ salilam ājīvanāntaṁ narāṇām dadyuḥ. Sādhavo kṛtam upakāraṁ na hi vismaranti.

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