ஆத்திச்சூடி # 13: அஃகஞ் சுருக்கேல் (ak-kam su-ru-kEl)
Translation: Never skimp on grains to shortchange others.
Intended Translation: Honesty is the best policy.
Rumination:The term "அஃகஞ்" refers to "grains" and "சுருக்கேல்" to "refrain from shortchanging." Literally, this maxim exhorts to avoid skimping on grains to shortchange others. In those days, local economy was sustained with practices that included bartering. One need not be a grocer to trade grains. Hence bartering of grains was ubiquitous. Greedy people shortchanged the buyer by reducing the amount of grains exchanged or sold for a return. In other words, Auvaiyar stresses the importance of being honest in all our affairs and transactions. This maxim can also be applied to modern times where most jobs are sedentary. At the comfort of a high-speed T1 connection, workers can wile away their precious time at work to cyber-loafing. Studies do suggest that there is an increased tendency in workers to malinger in order to run personal errands. These activites result in shortchanging one's employers, customers, and clients. It is very important to apply age-old maxims like this for contemporary contexts because it is the spirit behind the maxim that counts; not literal words.
Quotes: Your honesty is not to be based either on religion or policy. Both your religion and policy must be based on it -- John Ruskin 1819-1900 (Oxford Dictionary of Quotations 6th Ed.)
Note: This concludes the first 13 alphabets of Tamil, i.e., from அ to அஃ. They are known as உயிர் எழுத்துக்கள் (Lifeline alphabets).