Sanskrit is one of the richest languages in the world. There are thousands and thousands of manuscripts which are not at all touched by anybody. These are being preserved in various countries.
One area in which everybody is interested in Sanskrit Literature is called Subhasitas. What is Subhasita?
There are thousands of moral maxims, ethical teachings and wise sayings in the Sanskrit literature. These are generally called as subhasita verses.
The great scholars of India used to quote very many subhasita verses in their discourses. Because these are well spoken words filled with Dharma, the ethics. We may find riddles also in these short verses.
A very rough estimate indicates that there are about 20000 verses in this category.
Given below are a few wonderful, inspirational verses to make us understand its significance.
Sickness arises in six ways; through too much water-drinking, and through eating irregularly (as a quantity and time), through sleeping by day and through staying awake by night, and through retention of urine and excrement.
The following five are considered as fathers: giver of food, the protector from fear, the giver of the young girl (in marriage), the natural father, and the preceptor.
The giving of food is a great gift, but the giving of education is a greater one; the satisfaction that comes out of taking food is momentary, whereas the good result of education is life-long.
Proficiency in other sciences is only a pastime, for at the time of need they mean nothing. But medicine (the art of curing), astrology and Mantravada (Science of Spells) infuse confidence are useful at every step.
Those who are acquainted with the nature of the Eternal and the Transient, do not lament for either of them; when some among these beings even are seen to mourn, it is to be understood, that nature rules supreme in them.
Some of the verses will give double meanings. For example let us go through this one:
Dear girl, you are affected by high fever (or, you suffer from the fever of love). I consider fasting good for you (or, The kindling of sacred fire for our marriage will be for your happiness). The other meaning of this verse will be: O, best of physicians, prescribe mercurial preparation, for I am not able to undergo the fast as prescribed by you (or give me love, for I am not able to disregard what you have said.
Those who know Sanskrit could enjoy the verses for its beauty, words and meaning.
Several attempts have been made in the last two hundred years to compile as many subhasitas as possible.
We may assign some time daily to read and grasp the meaning of these beautiful verses which will definitely enrich our knowledge to lead a better life.