What Brings You Prosperity And Fame?

Buddha speaking to a patron

by Jayaram V

The Upanishads are the heart of Hinduism. I was introduced to them by chance nearly forty years ago, and ever since my interest in them only grew. It was out of my interest I translated several Upanishads twice in the past. The first attempt was several years ago, and it was meant mainly for the Internet. In my recent attempt, which took me over a year, I translated 16 major Upanishads covering over 1700 slokas. For me the exercise was more like an active meditation with an opportunity to communicate with the best of the ancient minds and making sense of their universal vision of God and existence. In this section I want to share with you the wisdom of the Upanishads, whenever I am inspired to do so. I hope to present at least a few every month until my thoughts are exhausted or my interest has waned. I hope you will find them useful. Jayaram V

Please do not look for complete answers or information in these. They are fragments of thoughts which deal with only certain aspects of the chosen subject

What brings you prosperity and fame? What is the source of abundance?

What creates prosperity? What does leave a lasting impression upon people, and contribute to your success and recognition? You may answer this question from various perspectives and attribute the reasons for prosperity or lack of it to knowledge, thinking, looks or appearance, family status, or something else.

All these factors do contribute to your success and prosperity. However, if you examine closely you will realize that they are not much helpful without proper communication skills. Whether you are a person of average or extraordinary talents, you must be able to articulate your thoughts and knowledge well within your limitations. Only then the world will listen to you, understand you, and appreciate you. If the knowledge remains hidden inside you, no one will notice how good or talented you are.

The Upanishadic seers debated upon this aspect and recognized speech as the most important and direct cause of success. They arrived at this conclusion because the Vedas are personification of speech only. Sanskrit is essentially a language of sounds. A Vedic priest needs to know how to pronounce the hymns of the Vedas.

Otherwise, he will not be able to please the gods and obtain their blessings for the worshippers. The next most important and responsible position in social matters in ancient India was that of a king. A king was expected to be a good leader who would command the respect of his people by his mere voice and whose word was the law. Therefore, there is a lot of emphasis on speech in Hindu scriptures.

Even now, we consider communication part of good leadership and recognize the importance of speech in every wake of life. You may have knowledge, but you may not find it useful unless you know how to communicate it well to others. You may come from a good family, but if you do not know how to speak pleasantly, you may earn more enemies than friends.

Similarly, you may be good looking, but if you do not have a pleasant voice to match your looks, you may not create a strong impression. Whether it is an interview, debate, speaking assignment, presentation, negotiation, selling, or conflict resolution, to succeed you need to know how to communicate well. If you speak well in public as well as in social gathering and if you do not overdo it, you convey the impression that you are knowledgeable, confident, respectable, dependable, and acceptable.

The same holds true for priests, and those engaged in preaching religious and spiritual knowledge. Hence, in the Upanishads you will find many verses that extol speech as the source of abundance and fame, such as the following verse from the Chandogya Upanishad (5.1.3): "Truly he who knows the most prosperous (cause) becomes the most prosperous among his own (people), and speech is indeed the most prosperous (cause)."

If you are aiming for success and recognition, focus upon your communication skills. Try to improve not only your language, choice of words and pronunciation but also how you communicate in different circumstances to create rapport, understanding and a lasting impression. Whether it is the President of the United States or a beggar in the streets of Washington D.C., both depend upon communication skills for their survival and success. << >>

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