Sagun Nirgun

37: Temperament

‘Temperament’ means ‘tendency,’ ‘one’s innate disposition.’ The Yogavasishtha describes that, “Man is born with his temperament.’ Man’s temperament, innate disposition is unchangeable. Prahlada was born in Daitya clan. In the Srimad Bhagawatpuran, he advises that “A man’s temperament can be modified by good samskaras and education.”

A dialogue between King Dhritarashtra and Maharishi Vyas in the Mahabharata is inspirational. Dhritarashtra was worried about Duryodhana’s temperament. He asked Maharshi Vyasa, “I regret that blinded by filial love I have failed in cultivating good samskaras in Duryodhana. Duryodhana’s behaviour has not changed. I don’t know how to dissuade him from wrongdoing.” Maharshi Vyasa preaches, “O king, Duryodhana’s behaviour is because of his innate disposition he acquired from birth. You should have enforced good samskaras on him, but you didn’t. You being the king, gave him the wrong impression that a son of a king should be a king. This misguidance inspired him to walk on the path of injustice. There is still time. You should make him aware of the consequences of this wrong actions. His nature will change with the samskaras and knowledge received from you.” But Dhritarashtra only blamed his fate and did nothing. Maharshi Vyasa left the palace. The take home message is that good samskaras should be imposed at the right time by determined parents.

Association with saints and good-natured people also helps in enhancing good qualities in individuals. Saints are always sweet natured. Milk is heated, cooled, and made into yogurt. Only when this yogurt is churned, butter is obtained. In the entire process, the milk does not discard its sweetness. Similarly, saints are like the milk. Under no circumstances do they leave their good nature.

In summary, the scriptures say that children have the same nature as their parents. It is important that parents impart good manners and education to their children.

In return, children should seek blessings from their parents for long life, education, success, and strength.


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