Jainworld
Jain World
Sub-Categories of Passions

Ten Universal Virtues

Munishri 108 Kam Kumar Nandi
Manglacharanam
Message, Foreword, Preface
Hymn To Five Divinties
  Paryushan Parva
  Supreme Forgiveness
  Supreme Tenderness or Humility
  Supreme Uprightness or Honesty
  Supreme Contentment or Purity
  Supreme Truthfulness
  Supreme Self-Restraint
  Supreme Austerities or Penance
  Supreme Renunciation
  Supreme Non-Attachment
  Supreme Chastity
  Kshamavani Parva

SUPREME UPRIGHTNESS OR HONESTY

 

 

     The snare of deceit must break down one day or the other, there after when it is exposed, the deceitful person has to undergo a very miserable plight. Therefore, we should always follow the superb virtue of uprightness or honesty (Uttama Arjava) beneficial to self and others as well.

     Deceit (Maya) wrong belief (Mithya) and ambition of reward for a good deed (Nidan) are the three thorns (shaliya). If any of these thorns persists in somebody's mind, the person cannot lead a happy life. Likewise, when the thorn of deceit enters a man's heart, it goes on pricking him. A deceitful person is always worried and remains suspicious, lest his deceit should be exposed. It is a well-known saying: 'A guilty conscious is always suspicious'.

     One day a king began to ease himself sitting under a jack fruit tree. Ripe jackfruits had dropped ala around the tree. On seeing the jack fruits the king's mouth watered. Finding it a secluded place, he picked up a jackfruit and put it into his mouth. But soon fear overpowered his mind with the doubt lest some one should have seen him. After easing himself, the king came back to his palace. That day, while dancing in the royal court, the court dancer began to sing, " I shall disclose today's secret, O King". As soon as the king heard this, filled with his own mental doubt, he began to think, "Probably she has seen me eating the jack fruit." Doubting lest she should disclose the secret in the presence of all counselors and citizens, he took off his necklace and offered it to the court dancer. When the royal dancer sang the same song the next day as well, the king took off his earrings and presented them to her. The court dancer mistook the king's bounty. She began to sing the same song in the royal court and got one or the other present from the king daily. When the king was fed up with presenting her ornaments, one day in great rage he asked, "Why do you daily repeat the same song? Disclose everything if you want to do so. I have not done any improper act by eating a jack fruit while easing myself." Hearing this the court dancer was dumbfounded. From the above example it becomes amply clear that so long as the thorn of deceit exists in the heart of a person, he remains perturbed and loses the peace of mind.

     If fire is kept wrapped in a piece of cloth, after having burnt the cloth it comes out taking a more fierce shape than before. Likewise, a deceitful deed cannot be concealed by any effort. Therefore, how does a deceitful deed benefit anybody? Not at all, if good fortune does not smile upon us, our faults are faults are but exposed despite our utmost effort to conceal them. But true it is that people do not regard a deceitful person guilty, even when his fault is exposed. It shows that there is no need for a virtuous person to be deceitful. Even wealth is obtained only by good luck and diligence. Thus, deceit gives rise to many evils in this world and spoils the charm of the other world, too.

     Not only mean persons, but sometimes- even persons of high status also indulge in deceitful deeds, which result in infinite bondage and ultimately lead to the worldly cycle of births and deaths. Nobody trusts a deceitful person. Highly virtuous people, who cross the river of deceit with the boat of honesty or straight-forwardness (Arjava Dharma) become victorious in life. On cheating his teacher Dronacharya by uttering the deceitful words 'kunjro na nara': Yudhister was filled with so great remorse that he concealed himself from the saintly persons. Thus, even great persons have suffered due to deceit. Knowing this fact deceit should be given up.

     When Narayan Shri Krishna and Arjun stood face to face in the battlefield, seeing his kith and kin Arjun spoke, "They are my brethren. I shall not shoot arrows at them." Saying so he dropped the bow and arrows on the ground. On hearing the words of Arjun, Shri Krishna was perturbed and spoke, "O Arjun! No body will admit that you are kind- hearted. All will say that Arjun is a coward. So he fled away from the battle field out of fear." As soon as Arjun heard these words, he picked up the bow and started fighting. A fierce battle took place between the armies. When innumerous human beings were being killed in the battle, Abhimanyu also met the same fate. Shri Krishna was dumbfounded as to how he would console Kunti that they could not safeguard Abhimanyu. Henceforth, the Pandu family would come to end.

     In fact, it is very easy to give rise to a war, but very difficult to bring it to a close. Likewise, it is easy to give rise to disputes between two societies, two nations, two religious groups, two communities, two politicians, and two brothers but it is a hard nut to crack to put an end to their quarrels. Narayan Shri Krishna was much worried, as a cease-fire could not be worked out between the two war groups of Pandav and Kauravas without the use of deceit. He said to Yudhister, "O Yudhister! If you say 'Ashwathama has been killed', the Kauravas will believe your words and take for granted the death Dronacharya's son Ashwthama and instantly the battle will come to an end." To this Yudhister replied, "Even if I loose everything, I will not tell a lie." An elephant named Ashwthama was killed just then. Then Yudhister thought, "There is no harm, if I speak the truth now." No sooner Yudhister utter the words 'Ashwathama hata' 'Ashwathama killed', and he was going to add 'gaj' - elephant than Shri Krishna sounded the conch shell. Those who were present in the battlefield could not understand if it was an elephant or a man that was killed. And in no time there was complete cease-fire. Thus, deceit was applied to put an end to the battle of Mahabharat. Indeed, Shri Krishna in this case applied the axiom, 'Everything is fair in Love and War'; which is irreligious.

     Likewise, men in general believe and act according to the saying, 'End justifies the means'. It is why professionals and common men use deceit in their daily routine. Some corrupt businessmen rob the consumers. Some treacherous lawyers exploit their clients. Some inhumane doctors make operation table bargains with the patients and some mean tutors mint money from their students by the use of deceit and fraud. Taking and giving bribes is also nothing but deceitful conduct and a punishable offense. Many times housewives also extort money from their husbands by deceit, or applying trick. The modern materialistic society may approve of such immoral conduct; but religion always insists on 'fair work and no foul play' under all odds.

     It has been nicely said about hypocrisy: "The world is a place where humbug or hypocrisy cannot find much scope for a long time. The real nature of every man comes out prominent in due course."

The great poet Reidhu has described supreme uprightness thus:

     Dhamhu varam lakhanru aju thir manru duriy vihandnru suhjanru

     Tam ith ji kijeyi tampalijeyi tamnri sunrijeyi khrey janru

 

     Jarisu nrijay chiti chintijyi tarisu anrhampunu bhasijyi

     Kogyo punru tarisu suhsanchnru tan ajyu gunrmunrhu achynru

 

     Maya salu mnrhu nrisarhu ajyu dhamu pavitru vyarhu

     Chuuo tau mayaviyu nrirthu ajyu siv pur panthhu sathau

 

     Jath kudil parimanru chijyi thim ajah dhamu ji sampajah

     Dasanr nranr saruv akhandu param atindrya sukh krandu

 

     Apim apu bhavhu tardu airisu chainr bhav pyandu

     So punru ajyu dhamay namyi ajvainr beyiriy manru khumyi

 

     Ajyu parmapu gye sankapu chimatu ji sasu abhu

     Tam nriru jhayijyi sansu hijyi pavijyi jihin achal pau

 

1.      Uprightness (Arjava) is the superb religious virtue. It makes the mind stable, annihilates evil, gives birth to happiness and puts an end to sins. Hence, O holy souls! Follow this virtue of righteousness, practice over it and give ear to it.

2.      Whatever thoughts arise in your mind, speak them out to others as such; and make efforts to make a similar type of action with body i.e., be honest in mind, speech and action. This is the eternal rule to usher in happiness.

3.      This virtue of uprightness is acquired by giving up deceitful ideas. It is a sign of infinite belief and knowledge and is a storehouse of extreme non-sensual (celestial) happiness.

4.      By uprooting the thorn of deceit from your inner self, meditate upon the holy virtue of uprightness; because all the vows, self-restraint and observance of holy rules by a deceitful person, are futile. Only the virtue of uprightness paves the path of salvation.

5.      The virtue of uprightness itself takes the soul across the ocean of the universe; intense feelings of advanced spiritual development are obtained through the virtue of uprightness. Uprightness conquers the pride or vanity of the opponents.

6.      The virtue of uprightness is the symbol of the divine; it is free from any pledge (sankalp); it is a living image of the lord; it is friendly to the soul; it is eternal and sign of fearlessness. The person, who meditates upon this virtue of uprightness, attains the imperishable state of salvation (Moksha).

     Hence, O Mortal Man! Be upright, be upright and be upright in all thy daily dealings; and shun all deceit and fraud, for 'Honesty is the best policy'.

     Many people think that honesty and integrity cannot possibly be maintained in this mundane world; but they do not know that without these, life is nothing but chaos.

     In truth, honesty is a great asset in life. Even if you become a beggar, it will be your glory to think that you are an honest beggar. A clear conscience shines far more bright than a heap of gold coins - fresh from the mint, and is far more valuable than a whole mine of diamonds.

     The great poet sings:

     'How happy is he born or taught

     That serveth not another's will

     Whose armor is his honest thought?

     And simple truth his utmost skill!�

                           - Sir Henry Wotton