"Say not 'I am,' 'I was,' or 'I shall be,'
Think not ye pass from house to house of flesh
Like travellers who remember and forget,
Ill-lodged or well-lodged. Fresh
Issues upon the universe that sum
Which is the lattermost of lives. It makes
Its habitation as the worm spins silk
And dwells therein."
— LIGHT OF ASIA, Bk. 8.
1 Four things increase by use: — Health, wealth, perseverance, and credulity.
2 To enjoy the day of plenty, you must be patient in the day of want.
3 Expel avarice from your heart, so shall you loosen the chains from off your neck.
4 Let a man overcome anger by love, evil by good, greediness by liberality, lie by truth.
5 Do not speak harshly to anybody; those who are so spoken to will answer thee in the same way.
6 This life is in the world of work and retributive justice; the life that follows is in the world of great reward.
7 Excuse is better than disputation; delay is better than rashness; unwillingness of strife is better than eagerness in seeking it.
8 Cut down the whole forest of lust, not the tree. When thou hast cut down every tree and every shrub, then thou wilt be free.
9 The avaricious go not to the world of the gods (Devas), for the fool commands no charity.
10 He who holds back rising anger like a rolling chariot, is called a real driver; other people are but holders of the reins.
11 The fool who is angered, and who thinks to triumph by using abusive language, is always vanquished by him whose words are patient.
12 The best of medicines is death; the worst of diseases is vain anticipation.
13 An easy temper is a good counsellor, and a pleasant tongue is an excellent leader.
14 A good word in time is better than a sweet pie after meals.
15 Foolish pride is an incurable malady; a bad wife is a chronic disease; and a wrathful disposition is a life-long burden.
16 Truth is brighter than the sun; truth is the sunny day of Reason, and falsehood the mind's dark night.
17 All has an end, and will away. Truth alone is immortal, and lives for ever.
18 The light of all flesh is the sun; the light of the soul — truth everlasting.
19 The road to sin is a wide highway; the way out of it, a steep and rugged hill.
20 The fault of others is easily perceived, but that of oneself is difficult to perceive.
21 Good people shine from afar like the snowy mountains; bad people are not seen, like arrows shot at night.
22 Where two women meet, there a market springs; where three congregate, a bazaar is opened; and where seven talk, there begins a fair.
23 Extensive knowledge and science, well-regulated discipline and well-spoken speech, this is the greatest blessing.
24 The subtle self is to be known by thought alone; for every thought of men is interwoven with the senses, and when thought is purified, then the self arises.
25 Lead me from the unreal to the real! Lead me from darkness to light! Lead me from death to immortality!
26 The Sage who knows Brahman moves on; on the small, old path that stretches far away, rests in the heavenly place, and thence moves higher on.
27 Neither by the eyes, nor by spirit, nor by the sensuous organs, nor by austerity, nor by sacrifices, can we see Brahma. Only the pure, by the light of wisdom and meditation, can see the pure Deity.
28 By perfection in study and meditation the Supreme Spirit becomes manifest; study is one eye to behold it, and meditation is the other.
29 Alas! We reap what seed we sow; the hands that smite us are our own.
30 Thoughts alone cause the round of rebirths in this world; let a man strive to purify his thoughts, what a man thinks, that he is: this is the old secret.
31 "My sons are mine; this wealth is mine": with such thoughts is a fool tormented. He himself does not belong to himself, much less sons and wealth.
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