Kural 561He is a true king who impartially investigates and then duly punishes so that the offense will not recur. Kural 562He who wishes his prosperity to long remain will raise the rod severely, but let it fall softly. Kural 563The tyrant who causes ...
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Tirukural

A daily chapter from South Indian saint Tiruvalluvar's Tirukural, 'Holy Couplets.'


Chapter 57: Avoidance of Tyranny

Kural 561

He is a true king who impartially investigates
and then duly punishes so that the offense will not recur.

Kural 562

He who wishes his prosperity to long remain
will raise the rod severely, but let it fall softly.

Kural 563

The tyrant who causes dread in his people
will perish quickly and inevitably.

Kural 564

"Our king is cruel." When these bitter words are spoken,
the monarch's life is shortened, and he soon succumbs.

Kural 565

If a man's countenance is harsh and access to him is hard,
his wealth, however vast, might as well belong to a demon.

Kural 566

If a man is unkind and speaks cruelly,
his vast wealth will not last long before perishing.

Kural 567

Harsh language and overly severe punishment,
like a keen file, grind down a king's conquering powers.

Kural 568

A king's wealth wanes when, without thoughtful involvement,
he lets ministers work, then furiously faults their efforts.

Kural 569

The sovereign who does not secure defenses will be seized
by fear when wartime comes and promptly perish.

Kural 570

Earth bears no greater burden than crude counselors
that a cruel-sceptered king binds to his court.
     
 



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These daily couplets are drawn from Saint Tiruvalluvar's Tirukural, an ethical masterpiece written over 2,200 years ago in South India. This American English translation, known as Weaver's Wisdom, is available at our Minimela online store.


 


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