We had an interesting discussion during satsang a few days ago. It was on a topic called Unlawful Love, authored by Thiruvalluvar in the Kural. The author has written with such emphasis, “It may seem all too easy to err with another’s wife, but the disgrace will be irredeemable for all time”.
There are so many examples of people ruining themselves and their images, simply because they couldn’t control themselves. Ravana lusting after Sita, Shantanu (nearly on his death-bed) lusting for the fisherwoman Satyavati, the Bill Clinton – Monica Lewinsky affair, Tiger Woods and his extra maritals – the list goes on.
This is perhaps not so different from discontentment with our money, gadgets, cars, houses etc. We just want more and more. And quickly get bored. We can probably replace a car or gadget with a newer model, but doing that with a wife / husband? Treacherous!
The challenge lies in the motive behind marriage. For most, it is purely physical, maybe a little emotional. To find someone who can act as a bottomless pit for their partner’s worries and troubles of life. But the wisdom of the ancients suggest that marriage primarily had a deeply spiritual component. The word vivaah in Sanskrit I’ve read means ‘to flow together’. Flow where? Towards liberation, which is the dharma of each individual. Interesting also then is that the sanskrit word for wife is dharmapatni.