Kelvi-42nd chapter of Thirukural-
(Knowledge gathered by hearing)
(There are several methods of learning , the major being to learn from books. The other major one is to learn it by hearing it. In fact all the Vedas were once only learned by hearing them. The great poet says , that when ypu do not have food for ears , do give some food to the stomach.)
1.Chelvathu chelvam chevi chelvam , achelvam,
CHelvaththulk yellam thalai
1,The wealth among wealth is the wealth of knowledge earned by ear,
And that wealth is the chief.
2.Chevikkunavu yila pozhthathu , chirithu ,
Vayithurkkum yeeya padum.
2.When food is not there for ears ,
Some would be given to the stomach.
3,Cheviyunavin kelvi udayar , aviyunavin,
Aandraarodu oppar nilathu.
3.Those who wealth of heard education living on earth,
Would be equal to the Devas of heaven.
4,Kathilan aayinum ketka akthoruvarkku ,
Orkathin ooththaam thunai.
4.Though a person has not read , he should try to hear them,
That would be of help to him like a walking stick in times of weakness.
5.Izhukkal udayuzhi ooththukol aththe ,
Ozhukkam udayaara vai chol.
5.The words of great people of good conduct ,
Would be like a walking stick to those who travel in slippery marshy land.
6.Yenaithanum nallavai ketka anaithanum,
Aandra perumai tharum.
6.However minor it is hear good words as it ,
Would add greatness to the extent heard by him.
7.Pizhaithunarthum pedaimai chollar izhaithunarnthu ,
EEndiya kelvi yavar.
7.Those who have knowledge earned after careful research,
And the knowledge got through ears, even if they have misunderstood,
Would not tell words of ignorance.
8.Ketpinum kelaa thagayave kelviyaal,
Thotka padatha chevi.
8. The ears of those who have not heard words of the learned,
Though they can hear are considered as deaf.
9.Nunangiya kelviyar allaar vanangiya,
Vaayinar aathal arithu,
9.Those who do not know minute knowledge ,
Learnt by hearing would not be able to tell words which can be saluted.
10.Cheviyin chuvai unaraa vaai unarvin maakkal,
Aviyinum vaazhinum yen.
10 What is the matter if the people who cannot understand
The taste of what they hear,but only know the taste by mouth , live or die.