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In the great epic Mahabharata the wise King Yudhisthira is asked a series of questions by a Yamaraja,the Lord of Death [ in disguise].Here are some of the more prominent questions and his answers.
Q. How is it possible for a man to always have a companion?A. Steady intelligence serves a man as a helpful companion always.
Q. How can a breathing man be said not to live? A. A man though he breathes,is considered not to be alive if he does not offer anything to the Gods,guests and servants.
Q. What is fleeter than the wind? A. The mind is fleeter than the wind.
Q. What is more numerous than the grass? A. The thoughts that arise in the mind of man are more numerous than the the grass.
Q. What is the most valuable of all possessions? A. Knowledge.
Q.What is the best of all gains? A. Health.
Q. What is the highest duty? A. To abstain from injury.
Q. What if controlling which will not lead to regret? A. The mind if controlled will never lead to regret.
Q. What is it when renounced makes one agreeable? A. Pride,when renounced makes one agreable.
Q. Renouncing what causes one to be wealthy? A. Desire,when renounced makes one wealthy.
Q. What is it that,which, when renounced leads to no regret? A. Wrath,when renounced ,leads to no regret.
Q. Renouncing what makes one happy? A. Avarice,when renounced, makes one happy.
Q. What is THE WAY? By whom is it constituted? A. Those that are good constitute THE WAY
. Q. What is the sign of asceticism? A. Staying in one's religion is the sign of asceticism
. Q. What is the sign of true restraint? A. The restraint of the mind is true restraint.
Q. What is the essential feature of forgiveness? A. Forgiveness consists in enduring enmity.
Q. What is shame? A. Shame is withdrawing from worthy acts.
Q. What is true knowledge? A. True knowledge is the knowledge of Divinity.
Q. What is true tranquility? A. True tranquility is tranquility of the heart.
Q. What is true mercy? A. True mercy is wishing happiness for all.
Q. What enemy is invincible? A. Anger
. Q. What disease is incurable? A. Covetousness is an incurable disease.
Q. What man is considered honest? A. He who desires the good of all creatures is considered honest.
Q. Which man is dishonest? A. One who is not merciful is dishonest.
Q. What is ignorance? A. True ignorance is not knowing one's duties.
Q. What is pride? A. Pride is the consciousness of one's being the [prime] actor or sufferer in life.
Q. What is idleness? A. Not discharging one's duties is idleness.
Q. What is grief? A. Ignorance is grief.
Q. What is patience? A. Patience is subjugating the senses.
Q. What is real ablution? A. A true bath consists in washing the mind clean of all impurities
Q. What is charity? A. Charity consists in protecting all creatures.
Q. What is wickedness? A. Wickedness is speaking ill of others.
Q. By what does one become a brahmin? Is it behavior? Or birth? Or study? Or learning? A. Neither birth nor study nor even learning makes a brahmin.It is behavior that makes a brahmin.If his behavior is faultless the man is faultless too.
Q.What is the reward for one who always speaks agreeable words? A. Why,he becomes agreeable to all.
Q. What is the most wonderful thing in this world? A. Day after day there into the Temple of Death,countless souls.Looking on this spectacle,the rest of them,those who remain,believe themselves to be permanent,immortal.Can anything be more wonderful than this?