Experiments with Translation

Translating life's journey in poetry, prose and pictures

śatakatrayam 1.57: pradānaṃ pracchannaṃ (covertly generous)

प्रदानं प्रच्छन्नं गृहमुपगते संभ्रमविधि:
प्रियं कृत्वा मौनं सदसि कथनं चाप्युपकृते:।
अनुत्सेको लक्ष्म्यां निरभिभवसारा: परकथा:
सतां केनोद्दिष्टं विषमसिधाराव्रतमिदम् ।।५७।।
नीतिशतके

covertly generous,
quietly hospitable,
vocally grateful,
modest about prosperity,
and ever respectful of others’ words.
who demands this way of life from good people–
as tormenting as sleeping with one’s beloved
with a sword in the middle? ||57||
nītiśataka

śatakatrayam 1.56: priyā nyāyyā vṛttiḥ (during their prime)

प्रिया न्याय्या वृत्तिर्मलिनमसुभङ्गेऽप्यसुकरं
त्वसन्तो नाभ्यर्थ्या: सुहृदपि न याच्य: कृशधन:।
विपद्युच्चै: स्थैर्यं पदमनुविधेयं च महतां
सतां केनोद्दिष्टं विषममसिधारातव्रतमिदम् ।।५६।।
नीतिशतके

during their prime,
they are principled and pleasing;
even when death creeps up,
their conduct is impeccable.
they demand nothing from wicked people,
nor of their friends
if they have but a meagre harvest.
when confronted with calamities,
they remain calm and composed,
and they follow in the footsteps
of the great ones.
who demands this way of life from good people–
as tormenting as sleeping with one’s beloved
with a sword in the middle? ||56||
nītiśataka

śatakatrayam 1.55: saṃpatsu mahatām cittaṃ (if you desire to be great)

संपत्सु महतां चित्तं भवेदुत्पलकोमलम् ।
आपत्सु च महाशैलशिलासंघातकर्कशम् ।।५५।।
नीतिशतके

if you desire to be great,
then discipline your mind
to be
pliable like a tender lotus
in acquiring material riches,
but as unyielding as
an assemble of towering rocks
when faced with obstacles. ||55||
nītiśataka

śatakatrayam 1.54: prāṇāghānnivṛtiḥ (oh ye, learn the way of life of the noblest amongst us all)

प्राणाघातान्निवृत्ति: परधनहरणे संयम: सत्यवाक्यं
काले शक्तया प्रदानं युवतिजनकथामूकभाव: परेषाम्।
तृष्णाश्रोतोविभङ्गो गुरुषु च विनय: सर्वभूतानुकम्पा-
सामान्यं सर्वशास्त्रेष्वनुपहतविधि: श्रेयसामेष पन्था: ।।५४।।
नीतिशतके

oh ye,
learn the way of life
of the noblest amongst us all.
they refrain from killing even the tiniest beings,
are not envious of others’ riches,
speak always the truth,
are bounteous on their deathbeds,
mute to the blandishments of sexy damsels,
slake desires of those in penury,
are humble towards their elders,
equally caring towards all,
and uphold sacred rituals and customs. ||54||
nītiśataka

śatakatrayam 1.53: kare ślaghyastyāgaḥ (generosity with money)

करे श्लाघ्यस्त्याग: शिरसि गुरुपादप्रणयिता
मुखे सत्या वाणी विजयि भुजयोर्वीर्यमतुलम् ।
हृदि स्वच्छा वृत्ति: श्रुतमधिगतं च श्रवणयो-
र्विनाप्यैश्वर्येण प्रकृतिमहतां मण्डनमिदम् ।।५३।।
नीतिशतके

generosity with money,
respect for elders,
truthful speech,
matchless strength,
exemplary conduct,
and spiritual wisdom;
these ornament the
hands, heads, lips, arms,
chests, and ears of those who are
innately distinguished
even without affluence. ||53||
nītiśataka