How to render different types of service: Examples from Krishna's life
Bangalore, Brindavan (Summer Course )
Man is attracted by clean surroundings. Similarly a clean mind in a human being is attractive to God. It means that the outer cleanliness and inner cleanliness are important. When man makes efforts to develop outer cleanliness he also makes commendable effort for improving inner purity. People should not only make attempts to clean the surroundings but also make efforts to help the people around to keep clean and happy minds. One must make an attempt to relieve people of their inconveniences and hurt by doing some service. Service is not done only through work but also through words. With good words, one can soothe people’s hearts and make them happy. By doing good deeds one can soothe people’s minds. By speaking about good things one can divert people from their sorrow. Therefore, good words are also a kind of seva or service. Today, people who call themselves leaders are not undertaking good service and as a consequence, the world around is becoming very chaotic and confusing. In this context Swami relates a story from the Krishna avatar. One day Krishna came to his mother Yashoda and said, “Mother, today I want to go with my cowherd friends to forest along with the cows. With great enthusiasm my friends invite me to come along. So I too want to go with them to the forest to tend the cows.” So saying he asked His mother’s permission to go to the forest. Mother sat Krishna close and said, “Gopala! The forest is filled with snakes, insects, thorns and dense bushes. You need to have shoes to walk in such a place. But today I haven’t ordered the task of getting your shoes made. After two days I shall send you to the forest with new shoes, along with the cows, O Gopala! But today I beg you to stay home.” Immediately Krishna asked, “Mother, what did you call me now?” The mother said, “Son, I addressed you as Gopala as that is your name.” “I tend the cows so people call me Gopala. Isn’t he a leader who looks after the welfare of others? Hence the cows under my tending follow me. Therefore I am a leader and the cows under my care will definitely follow me. The cows that follow me do not have any foot wear; therefore I too cannot wear any foot wear, O mother!” Krishna argued with his mother thus: “If I wear shoes, the cows too would want to wear shoes thereby causing a delay in going to forest. I do not want to enter into that kind of leadership. I do not want any foot wear. I can gain respect for my leadership, only when I lead life similar to the life lead by the cows under my care.” This implies that God gets down to the human level and follows the ideal path so as to make man follow Him and attain divinity. The Gopalakas and Gopikas sanctified their lives by following Lord Krishna. In today’s world too, if people can imprint the teachings and ideals of the avatars in their heart and lead life in accordance, they too can become leaders and be able to recognise the innate divinity.
In servitude lies the leadership00:02:49
One must always be men of service. Leadership lies in the spirit of service. Leaders today have never served before. They aspire to be the leaders without serving anyone hence, the present plight of the world. In fact there is a lot of respect in service to others. What are the traits of Hanuman? “Hanuman is one of peace He is one of character! He is one of physical strength!” He is very strong. He went to the Ashoka garden while searching for Sita, but the demons in the kingdom of Ravana had never before seen a monkey. All the demons gathered to see the funny looking creature. Indrajith, son of Ravana, asked Hanuman, “Who are you?” None knew the capacity of Hanuman, yet he replied, “Sir! I am the servant of SriRamachandra!” Such respect he had in being the servant of Rama! Regard for one increases when one says one is the servant of Ramachandra. One may be servant of bad thoughts and deeds, of sensual and worldly pleasures, but what is low about being a servant to the Lord? One must introspect, “What mistakes am I committing? Why should I fear? What is wrong in doing service to the society?” and exercise this kind of discrimination to develop courage in oneself. It is this courage that is most important. When once one serves the community with full faith and courage, one finds the God by his side.
How do we know who comes to our rescue00:04:46
It is not possible for us in this world to foretell what kind of person, who, and under what circumstances will help us. A friend walked into the house of a scholar, a great poet, and pundit and started describing about the book he has written was very good and very useful to the world. This pundit then replied that, in writing the text, his wife was very helpful and success is due not only to him but to his wife also. The friend then said, it appears not only the person but also his wife both of them are poets and scholars. How nice and how fortunate that both husband and wife are writers and scholars. The wife who was standing behind the door and listening to this conversation., came after the friend left and asked her husband, "You never utter untruth, and why is it on this day in this context you lied?" The poet then said, "No, I never say untruth. Even if I am to face death, still I will not say untruth. The wife asked, I do not know how to write poetry. I never did it. How is it you said that I have helped you in writing the book. Not only that. When you had written this text, I was not here. I was away in my parents house. How is that you have said that I have helped you? The husband then replied, "Yes that is the help which you had given me by being away from this house." He said, "If you were in this house at that time I would have been immersed in the family affairs and I would have never been able to concentrate and write such a great text." So in this context, what we have to note is that, it is not possible to say which individual under what circumstances and in what way could help us. Mere giving away money or wealth is not the only help. Help can come by way of a good word, encouragement, by gestures or in any other manner. If we have sacredness in our hearts, even if we participate in a small noble deed in this world, it will turn out to be a great help. You need not have to do some very huge and magnanimous things. Divinity is in the smallest of small things and also in the biggest of big things. So, out of a small seed, a huge tree comes out. Out of a small act of yours great help may emanate.
Help distressed people; Jesus said00:01:00
You see many people suffering. You also see the forlorn, the helpless. In what way are you helping them? Jesus struggled hard to prevent the sacrifice of animals there in that city of Jerusalem. For this reason, there were many obstacles on his way. Where there is a trend to help, naturally the harm also follows.