Mahatama Kautilya was a renowned scholar and a proficient preacher of human relations. He had many shishyas (pupils) out of which, one even became the king of erstwhile India.
He often used to preach, ‘that before you decide to help any anyone try and know about the person in great detail,’ and then only offer him help. As that alone will be beneficial for the person you’re trying to help. We should not offer help for useless causes, as by doing that, the noble gesture goes for a complete waste. His shishyas, however, could not understand this advice of his. Because in their childhood, they had heard, that charity and help like rainfall should be showered on everyone equally, otherwise it goes for a complete waste. Mahatma, on this belief of theirs, often used to laugh.
One day a cheat from a nearby town came up to him and said, ‘Rishivar (Sage) I have heard, you are a great repository of knowledge in the field of wealth and intelligence. My humble request to you is to make me rich.’ Upon hearing this the shishyas got angry and literally wanted to throw him out of the ashram when the Maharishi smiled and intervened.
‘Wealth are of two kinds, one is money and the other is spiritual. Whatever you are worth, I will definitely give you that. But, before that you will have to undertake a small test. Out there from the sand go and pick up two stones, one black and one white and put them in your bag. I will then ask one of my shishya to put his hand in your bag and pull out a stone while you keep your eyes closed. In case the stone happens to be white I’ll give you spiritual knowledge and if the stone happens to be black then I’ll give you monetary knowledge that will help you in becoming rich.’ The cheat on the holy advice of the Mahatma closed his eyes for a while when he heard the Mahatma saying.
‘My shishya has picked up the white stone that had fallen out from your bag. And that is why I feel you require spiritual knowledge, and I will provide you with that.’
The cheat immediately realised that even without telling anyone that he is a cheat he has been exposed, for which he is likely to be punished. He started repenting, and fell at Maharishi’s feet and started pleading for pardon for having kept his identity as a secret and for all the misdeeds he had done in the past. He at once decided to cleanse his soul when he earnestly requested the Maharishi to make him his shishya.
All the shishyas were dazed at this, is when the Mahatma said, ‘when this cheat came to ask for help. I found an opportunity to present you all and even him with a truth finding test, so that you all could see his misdeeds. But no one besides me and the moon tried to inspect this cheat in detail. Yet we still wanted to help him. So we stayed quiet, researched on him and later on based on the necessity and requirement we taught him the lesson of honesty, truthfulness, and seriousness. As this he required even before he became rich.
This episode teaches us that before helping anyone you should try and know the person in minute details, so that you can help the person in the best possible manner and what he requires the most, he should get that only.
By Kamlesh Tripathi
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