Avidyaa-yaam antare varta-maanaah
Swayam dheeraah panditam manya-maanaah
Dan-dram-ya-maanaah pari-yanti moo-dhaa
Andhenai’va neeya-maa-naa yathaa’ndhaah – [1:2:5]
Ignorant people, though enveloped in blinding darkness, fancy themselves to be wise and learned. Running around in circles in pursuit of thoughtless desires, they stumble back and forth like blind people led by the blind.
[Some are truly learned, and some are not learned but think they are learned. The learned have foresight, because they are spiritually illumined, whereas those who think they are learned suffer from short-sight, for they are spiritually blind. The knowledge of the learned goes far above literacy and scholarship, whereas the ignorance of the supposedly learned is more blinding and confining than illiteracy and the lack of book learning. The learned lead a life, mindful of what Rishis and Shaastras teach, whereas the ignorant just breathe and live, unmindful of values that transcend Profit and Wealth. The ignorant are alive and filled with movement, but that movement is without growth since their minds are clouded by lust, anger, greed, vanity, and infatuation. As a result, their steps become unsteady as they pursue profit that leads to comfort, security, and affluent livelihood. Such people stumble back and forth like blind people led by the blind, says Yamacharya, Death-as-Teacher. They do not know, nor care to know, of the World of Soul, God, and Freedom.]
DR SATISH PRAKASH