What is the work of virtue? 'Not to kill';
For 'killing' leads to every work of ill
Never to destroy life is the sum of all virtuous conduct The destruction of life leads to every evil.
Aravinai Yaadhenin Kollaamai Koral
Piravinai Ellaan Tharum.
Let those that need partake your meal; guard every-thing that lives;
This the chief and sum of lore that hoarded wisdom gives
The chief of all (the virtues) which authors have summed up, is the partaking of food that has been shared with others, and the preservation of the mainfold life of other creatures.
Pakuththuntu Palluyir Ompudhal Noolor
Thokuththavatrul Ellaan Thalai.
Alone, first of goods things, is 'not to slay';
The second is, no untrue word to say
Not to destroy life is an incomparably (great) good next to it in goodness ranks freedom from falsehood.
Ondraaka Nalladhu Kollaamai Matradhan
Pinsaarap Poiyaamai Nandru.
You ask, What is the good and perfect way?
'Tis path of him who studies nought to slay
Good path is that which considers how it may avoid killing any creature.
Nallaaru Enappatuvadhu Yaadhenin Yaadhondrum
Kollaamai Soozhum Neri.
Of those who 'being' dread, and all renounce, the chief are they,
Who dreading crime of slaughter, study nought to slay
Of all those who, fearing the permanence of earthly births, have abandoned desire, he is the chief who, fearing (the guilt of) murder, considers how he may avoid the destruction of life.
Nilaianji Neeththaarul Ellaam Kolaianjik
Kollaamai Soozhvaan Thalai.
Ev'n death that life devours, their happy days shall spare,
Who law, 'Thou shall not kill', uphold with reverent care
Yama, the destroyer of life, will not attack the life of him, who acts under the determination of never destroying life.
Kollaamai Merkon Tozhukuvaan Vaazhnaalmel
Sellaadhu Uyirunnung Kootru.
Though thine own life for that spared life the price must pay,
Take not from aught that lives gift of sweet life away
Let no one do that which would destroy the life of another, although he should by so doing, lose his own life.
Thannuyir Neeppinum Seyyarka Thaanpiridhu
Innuyir Neekkum Vinai.
Though great the gain of good should seem, the wise
Will any gain by staughter won despise
The advantage which might flow from destroying life in sacrifice, is dishonourable to the wise (who renounced the world), even although it should be said to be productive of great good.
Nandraakum Aakkam Peridheninum Saandrorkkuk
Kondraakum Aakkang Katai.
Whose trade is 'killing', always vile they show,
To minds of them who what is vileness know
To minds of them who what is vileness know.
Kolaivinaiya Raakiya Maakkal Pulaivinaiyar
Punmai Therivaa Rakaththu.
Who lead a loathed life in bodies sorely pained,
Are men, the wise declare, by guilt of slaughter stained
(The wise) will say that men of diseased bodies, who live in degradation and in poverty, are those who separated the life from the body of animals (in a former birth).
Uyir Utampin Neekkiyaar Enpa Seyir Utampin
Sellaaththee Vaazhkkai Yavar.