Saturday, August 15, 2009

Serve Silently and Deserve Divine Grace

Om Sri Sairam

Being Dust (ChemburDust that is)helps.
Dust is the lowest denominator of matter
to which everything is reduced to in the end.
Which,being Dust,we already are.

No baggage of Knowledge.
Enjoy Knowledge-holiday
and transact only through heart.
Aatha vaatha kuch nahi tho
what a relief!
A state carefully crafted
by wilful unlearning.

By the way, Love happens in Heart
only when we switch off the Head.
Even in low-end worldly Love,
two love-smitten don't discuss Algebra !
Divine Love is far more non-head stuff.

Being at the bottom,
we get a worm's-eye view, if not bird's.
And that too is some angle,
atleast from the bottom of the Pyramid.
To which everybody rushes these days
led by the celebrated C K Prahlad.

Armed by ignorance we set out to explore
with a clean slate.

So much grief and agony all around.
India can certainly write grammer for grief.
But again,there is disproportionately higher
NGOs in every domain.
From 'street dogs' to 'Green space' they are ubiquitous.
Then,why mitigation-rate is miserable?

We did a petty survey to figure out.And
exchanged notes with few NGOs.

Every NGO has a challenge.
Their Junta demand high drama,
in every Project conceived.
Local mileage, if not Media mileage.
Without big bandwagon,photo ops
and noisy celebration,
pretty poor participation.
Only a few dedicated handful
show up in Silent Zones.
Can't get critical mass to make a difference.

Modern minds suffer from 'Attn deficiency'.
Inadequate recognition in workplace.
Poor acknowledgement back home.
And no one cares a hang in Society
for others' welfare.

In this backdrop,
many minds jump at NGO-ops
to get a new badge of recognition.
With noise and celebration.
But if they are missing,many don't sign up.

At ChemburDust, we embarked upon a tiny project-
To go at midnight, on the eve of Baba's 84th birthday,
to the footpath opp Tata mem hospital,
and spread brand new bedsheets over the
poor cancer patients and their escorts sleeping there...
Around 80+ right on footpath.

It was executed with the script-'Quietly spread and Quickly vanish'.
The beneficiaries in sleep didn't know who the donors were.
We enjoyed our anonymity and identitylessness.
With only few volunteers turning up,
it was a mid-night non-event.
But tons of bliss in that plain vanilla 'giving'.

In any supply chain, the last mile is crucial.
To deliver without transmission loss.
In many NGO projects, we find the last mile dicey,
though their PPTs are spicy!
Flood at the top of the funnel.
But not even a trickle at the bottom.

But we can't blame them always.
Read Times story on 18 Dec
about an NGO, struggling to get
regular volunteers for handling street kids.

Familiarity breeds contempt,they say.
The mind needs new drama in every action-(read Seva.)
The organisers are forced to package it with
high decibel bandwagon and assured mileage.
Baraath of Bandhu lok in truck loads.
Forced to Dramatise and draw volunteers.
It is a task for the poor NGO heads.

But unfortunately this model won't sustain.
Nor get billed as Seva, in real sense.
There is choice-
Serve our sick minds or serve the poor n needy?
And many buckle and choose the former.

Limelight is irresistible.
It is part of Maya's script.
For some, NGO is backdoor access to Powerplay.

But the real Seva demands
self-effacing simplicity.
Just deliver and disappear.

Seva is a Sadhana to jettison
the unwanted load of 'misconceived self'-
Mai yeh hoon.. mai woh hoon...
Meri izzat..Mera reputation...
Iam not an ordinary volunteer,
Iam an office bearer..etc.etc.
Misconceived self is a
millstone around the neck..

But dropping self-centredness
is the pre requisite for any Seva.

When doing Seva, set aside Self.
Seek Obscurity,sink in oblivion and revel in it.
As the beneficiary wonders who gave it,
hide and enjoy their pleasant surprise.

Like the Lord does it with us.
He makes us win, through His Grace.
And let us clamour "Oh. I won on my own".
And hides and enjoys that!

Time is running out.
Evil forces are catching up.

Post Copenhagen, we realise
Govts can't concur even on climate issues.
Societies of the west implode and crumble as
everyone in family pursues own private agenda.
And kids need tobe saved from Parents.
Institutions fall like pack of cards every day.
In the confusion, terrorists have a field day.

The only hope for the world is
good NGOs and their few silent workers,
who travel the extra mile and deliver fully.

Next time when we choose to join any Seva,
we shouldn't look for a jamboree-
Excitement, fun and enjoyment-
as part of Seva Package.
That drives the organisers crazy
defocussing from Seva objectives.

Enough of our dope.
Lets hear what Baba has to say on these.

"Do not allow your service activities turn into shops which concentrate on window dressing, in order to attract
attention and patronage.....Service activities in all lands can thrive only through selfless dedication.
Fanfare is a sign of insincerity. Silent, unsullied work alone can appeal...

...Clever propaganda may achieve some temporary results but, in the long run, it will bring disappointment and
disillusion. Like the 'rockets' lit by children on Deepavali night, it will flare up and fizzle down..

Today, we are confronted everywhere by statistics parading quantities and reports in glowing
terms. Do not bother about adding to the number or achieving a target. I value quality, not
quantity. Genuine, intensive devoted service offered in a few villages is more fruitful than casual
contacts and superficial service offered to a large number.
__ Sri Sathya Sai Baba
Discourse at Poornachandra Auditorium on 21-11-1986. SSS Speaks Vol.19
More of Baba's words in the above link..

Seva is the only saviour.
And Silent seva is the only model.

Come.Serve silently and Deserve divine grace.



No comments: