Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

042 – King’s Temple or Cobbler’s Cottage | Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

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This talk was delivered by Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha at the ‘Prakash Mehrotra Memorial Lecture’ in New Delhi.

Epic historical writings not only shed light on the times in which they were written, but also present eternally relevant examples of righteousness and good conduct to the modern reader.

In this lecture, Poojya Swamiji introduces the Rajatarangini, a chronicle of the kings of Kashmir, written by the 12th century scholar Kalhana. One particular episode that occurred during the reign of King Chandrapida is highlighted in the talk as an example of Just Governance.

The King refused to forcefully seize the land of a cobbler (who occupied the proposed site of a planned temple) and instead dealt with the cobbler in terms of equality and respect. The King’s resolve to uphold the rights of the poorest of his subjects is particularly illustrative of the strong tradition of propriety and ethical discipline that permeates the records of Indian history.

Swamiji says that modern-day judiciaries and governments would do well to emulate the example of the King in this regard. Such instances enable us to introspect on these events and live in a righteous manner in modern society.

Swamiji, through his narration also highlights the state of mind of the cobbler. The abundance, peace and contentment that adorned his mind was not dependent on external circumstances.

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