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CHITRA and ARJUNA
My lord, has the cup been drained to the last drop? Is this,
indeed, the end? No, when all is done something still remains,
and that is my last sacrifice at your feet.
I brought from the garden of heaven flowers of incomparable
beauty with which to worship you, god of my heart. If the rites
are over, if the flowers have faded, let me throw them out of the
temple [unveiling in her original male attire]. Now, look
at your worshipper with gracious eyes.
I am not beautifully perfect as the flowers with which I
worshipped. I have many flaws and blemishes. I am a
traveller in the great world-path, my garments are dirty,
and my feet are bleeding with thorns. Where should I achieve
flower-beauty, the unsullied loveliness of a moment's life? The
gift that I proudly bring you is the heart of a woman. Here have
all pains and joys gathered, the hopes and fears and shames of a
daughter of the dust; here love springs up struggling toward
immortal life. Herein lies an imperfection which yet is noble
and grand. If the flower-service is finished, my master, accept
this as your servant for the days to come!
I am Chitra, the king's daughter. Perhaps you will remember the
day when a woman came to you in the temple of Shiva, her body
loaded with ornaments and finery. That shameless woman came to
court you as though she were a man. You rejected her; you did
well. My lord, I am that woman. She was my disguise. Then by
the boon of gods I obtained for a year the most radiant form that
a mortal ever wore, and wearied my hero's heart with the burden
of that deceit. Most surely I am not that woman.
I am Chitra. No goddess to be worshipped, nor yet the
object of common pity to be brushed aside like a moth with
indifference. If you deign to keep me by your side in the path
of danger and daring, if you allow me to share the great duties
of your life, then you will know my true self. If your babe,
whom I am nourishing in my womb be born a son, I shall myself
teach him to be a second Arjuna, and send him to you when the
time comes, and then at last you will truly know me. Today I can
only offer you Chitra, the daughter of a king.
Beloved, my life is full.
|Art of Worldly Wisdom Daily|
In the 1600s, Balthasar Gracian, a jesuit priest wrote 300 aphorisms on living life called "The Art of Worldly Wisdom." Join our newsletter below and read them all, one at a time.
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