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Though every one knows about Thirukural , I always wondered if we knew all topics Thiruvalluvar has discussed about in his work. True, its being herald as one of the greatest works of the human mind and even called the Veda which never becomes false( Poiya Marai). To just show you what all topics he has covered in his work, I have sort of given Index/Contents of Thirukural below.
Book 1 Virtue(Aram) – Arattuppaal
1. In praise of God (Pakavan,Iraivan).
2. The excellence of rain (Vaan,Maalai).
3. The greatness of those who have renounced.
4. Assertion of the strength of virtue.
I. Domestic Virtue (Illaram)
5. Domestic life(ilvalkkai)
6. The goodness of wife (Valkkaittunai)
7. The obtaining of sons(putalvar)
8. The possession of affection(anpu)
10. Kindly speech.
13. Self Control.
14. Decorous conduct.
15. Not coveting another’s wife.
17. Absence of envy.
18. Absence of covetousness.
19. Not speaking evil of absent.
20. Not speaking senseless words.
21. Dread of evil deeds.
II. Ascetic Virtue( Turavaram)
25. Possession of grace(arul).
26. Abstinence from flesh(Vegetarianism)
28. Inconsistent conduct.
29. Absence of fraud.
31. Absence of anger.
32. Infliction no pain.
33. Not killing (Kollamai)
34. Instability of earthly things.
36. Perception of truth (mey).
37. Extirpation of desire (avaa).
38. Past deeds(ul = Karma).
Book II. Wealth (porul) – Porutpaal
(Royalty. The qualities of the leader men.)
39. The greatness of a king.
42. Learning through hearing.
43. Possession of knowledge.
44. Correction of faults.
45. Seeking the help of the great.
46. Avoiding mean association.
47. Acting after right consideration.
48. Recognition of power.
49. Recognition of opportunity.
50. Recognition of Place.
51. Selection and confidence.
52. Selection and employment.
53. Cherishing one’s kin.
55. The right sceptre.
56. The cruel sceptre(tyranny).
57. Absence of tyranny.
62. Manly effort.
63. Not despairing trouble.
(The subject vis-a-vis the ruler.)
65. Power in speech.
66. Purity in action.
67. Firmness in deeds.
68. Method of action.
69. The envoy.
70. Conduct in the presence of King.
71. Knowledge of signs.
72. Knowledge in the council chamber.
73. Not to fear the council.
(Essential parts of the state. Shrewdness in public life).
74. The land.
75. The fort.
76. Way of accumulating wealth.
77. Greatness of the army.
78. Military spirit.
80. Scrutiny of friendship.
82. Evil firendship.
83. Faithless friendship.
87. The excellence of hate.
88. Skill in the conduct of quarrels.
89. Secret enmity.
90. Not offending the great.
91. Being led by women.
92. Wanton women.
93. Abstinence from liquor.
(Reaching perfection in social life.)
99. Perfect excellence.
101. Useless wealth.
103. How to sustain family.
107. The dread of mendicancy.
Book III. Pleasure(Kaamam)-Kaamattuppal.
I. Concealed love(Kalavu).
109. Mental disturbance caused by the lady’s beauty.
110. Recognition of the signs.
111. Recjoicing the sexual union.
112. In praise of her beauty.
113. Declaration of love’s excellence.
114. Abandonment of reserve.
II. Wedded Love(Karpu).
116. Seperation is unendurable.
117. Complaining of absence.
118. Eyes concerned with grief.
119. Grief’s pallor.
120. Solitary anguish.
121. Sad memories.
122. Visions of night.
123. Laments at evening.
124. Wasting away.
126. Reserve destroyed.
127. Longing for return.
128. Reading of Signs.
129. Desire for reunion.
130. Arguing with one’s heart.
131. Lover’s quarrel.
132. Petty jealousises.
133. Pleasures of temporary variance.
If you had patiently see what all topics he has covered, you will see he starts from God, moves to the household,then moves to wealth and then goes to the government and finally comes to love life. He has covered about everything that was present during his period. This kind of shows how intelligent a person should be to write about everything around him. How often you have seen a master of all trades ?
Please post your comments.
Smile of Murugan by Kamil Zvelebil.
Thirukural – English Translation by Suthanantha Barathi