Published from “Three Minutes” series written by A.S.Rajagopalan Swami of Ohio
koL enRu kiLarndu ezhunda perumcelvam neruppAga koL enRu tamam mUDum ivai enna iyaRkai! – (nammAzhvAr, tiruvAimozhi 4.9.4)
கொள்ளென்று கிளர்ந்தெழுந்த பெருஞ்செல்வம் நெருப்பாக, கொள்ளென்று தமம்மூடும் இவையென்ன உலகியற்கை?வள்ளலே மணிவண்ணா உனகழற்கே வரும்பரிசு,வள்ளல்செய் தடியேனை உனதருளால் வாங்காயே.
celvam = wealth
ecru = how (it)
koL = (begs, please) accept me in
kiLarndu = (like a) fiercely
ezunda = rose
neruppAga = fire
ivai = (in fact) these (actually)
mUDum = closes
tamam = (one’s) control of senses
ennui = what a
iyaRkai = natural phenomena
This verse (pAsuram) is found in tiruvAimozhi, one of the four hymns prabhandams)created by nammAzhvAr (our shrIvaiShNava saint). Here AzhvAr compares the wealth to a blazing fire. Human desires are limitless. Many of those are quenched through acquiring wealth. This wealth initially begs them “please take me in, please take me in”. Fascinated by this appeal, people indulge to accumulate more. But, once the wealth is landed comfortably within their mind and wallet, it surrounds them and eventually destroys them like a blazing fire. This concept is nothing new and is occurring everyday. Though it is transparent, people still go and fall into this trap. What an amazing natural phenomenon!
The moral here is
1. Wealthisboththecauseand destroyer of happiness Though, most think wealth is basic ingredient for happiness, they forget nothing comes free.
2. People surrounding the wealthy, don’t like them. They are jealous and will try to do all the mischief.
3. Contentment is essential. nammAzhvAr here emphasizes contentment as stressed in Vedas, bhagavad GitA, etc. If one does not exercise content, he will never be happy even if he could get everything in the universe.
4. Handle the wealth with care. Wealth is like a fire. If you go too close, it burns you; staying too far away, it leaves you in cold.
Money can buy a bed, but not sleep; it can buy medicine, but not cure the disease.