importance of the Bhartrihari traya Shataka (Subhashitam)
is nothing less than Ramayana, Geeta or Mahabharata.
This Shatak unites the complex knots of life and
directly captivate the human heart. People could feel
divine acquiring inspiration from the Shataka. One can
seldom find anything comparable to Bhartrihari Shatak,
especially with relation to philosophy of life.
The Vairagya Shataka, Neeti Shataka and Shringar Shataka
are related to spirituality, social life and personal
life respectively. But on the whole the benefits of this
Shataka encompass every sphere of life.
The ultimate aim of human life is attainment of the
state of bliss, which is impossible until the mind is
vagrant, aimless and instable. It is because of this
reason that one needs love and eroticism in youthhood.
Every person is endowed with some aesthetic sense.
Detachment is simply impossible without aesthetic sense.
The philosophy of Satyam Shivam Sundaram is rightly
based on the above-mentioned concept. What is true, that
only is welfare-oriented and what is welfare-oriented is
undoubtedly beautiful. The Shringar Shataka adheres in
totality to this concept.
Man attains the highest state of bliss eventually, only
after he initially treads on the path of beauty,
understands the concept of morality and finally
renounces desire, hatred, sensual-pleasure etc.
Bhartrihari was not only a king but was a distinguished
scholar, a gifted poet, a philosopher, thinker, and a
He expressed all those feelings through poetry, which he
imbibed through different experiences of life.
Technically speaking the art of Bhartrihari’s poetry
is inexplicable. No amount of discursive writing can
ever encompass the uniqueness of style, the benevolence
of emotions, the structure of words, all these sublime
Bhartrihari was the king of Malwa whose capital city was
Ujjain. The famous emperor Vikramaditya was the younger
stepbrother of king Bhartrihari.
After being throned as a king, Bhartrihari became so
physically attached to his wife that he spent most of
the time with her. Vikramaditya tried to make him
realize his foolishness, but all in vain. On the
contrary on the command of Queen Pingala, Bhartrihari,
threw Vikramaditya out of the city.
So does the story goes that Bhartrihari got such a fruit
from a Brahmin that would increase his life span. The
king did not eat the fruit himself but gave it to Queen
Pingala, because he was madly obsessed with her.
Queen Pingala took the fruit and pretended that she was
very happy and said that she would eat the fruit after
having a bath. The king agreed to this and happily
returned. The Queen Pingala was in love with a horse
keeper. She gave the fruit to him. The horse keeper was
in love with a prostitute. He presented this fruit in
turn to her. The prostitute was a pious women and she
decided that she would gift the king with this fruit.
Thinking this she proceeded towards the king’s palace.
King Bhartrihari was busy along with his councilors in
the court. The prostitute came and gifted the fruit to
the king and told him about the greatness of the fruit.
Seeing the same fruit in the prostitute’s hand the
king was confused. He immediately, took it and ate it.
Realizing the insincerity of the Queen, Bhartrihari felt
This event had such an impact on Bhartrihari that he
became detached to this world and starting abhorring
material life. He renounced the palace and all the
physical pleasures and went to the forest.
The results of his renunciation are these 3
Shatakas.Whatever it may be these three Shatakas shall
always guide mankind for ages to come.
invites you to the Wonderful Spiritual World
Engineer Rameshwar Prasad (B.Tech., M.Tech., P.G.D.C.A.,
P.G.D.M.) VAASTU INTERNATIONAL
49 C (Second Floor), Pocket- B, SFS
New Delhi - 110096,
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