Spiritual Blossoms
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During the last couple of weeks, the BBC has been airing many programs on religion. I managed to listen to quite a few of them and found them most absorbing as well as interesting, especially as the BBC has done an extensive global survey on what people round the world think of God, religion etc. Many interesting conclusions have emerged and those interested may visit the BBC web site. Let me mention just a couple of interesting observations that I heard. One was that even atheists pray! The second is the observation of one person who when interviewed said that Spirituality looks Inward while Religion looks outward. I found this observation extremely interesting as well as thought provoking. My purpose in bringing up the BBC features is not to comment upon them – perhaps I shall do it later – but to draw attention to an interesting story narrated by one of the panellists, a Professor of I forget what. Anyway, the story narrated by the Professor is more interesting that the subject that he/she professes. The story is about a Sufi saint and goes as follows:

One day, the Sufi saint prayed to God.

“Oh God, You are so wonderful. You have created marvellous things in this world. Yet, in this beautiful world created by You, there is so much misery, suffering, pain, violence and what not. Why don’t You do something about it?”

“I have done something,” replied God.

“You have done something? Where is that? What is that? I don’t see it,” said the Sufi saint in reply.

God then slowly whispered, “Son, I created you!”

Wonderful story is it not? I think there is a deep message and if we reflect carefully, we would realise that Swami is telling us precisely the same thing over and over again. Yes, all we have to do is to serve mankind, remembering that service to man is service to God. If we wipe one tear in one eye, we would be not only making God happy but also experience Ananda ourselves.

By the way, this reminds me of an incident recorded by late Mr. J.R.D Tata, a towering figure in modern India. He was half Parsi and half French, and India was his home. He was an enlightened citizen who incidentally was also a great business manager. He won the highest honour in India, the Bharata Ratna.

Once he invited Mother Teresa to Jamshedpur, where the Tata company has a huge steel plant. Mother came there to participate in a function. After the function was over, Tata took Mother back to Calcutta [about 200 km away] in his private executive jet. The Sun was setting and Mother took out her rosary to pray. Just then, the plane was flying over big slums near Jamshedpur. Tata then said to Mother, “While you are praying to God, why don’t you ask Him to do something about poverty and misery?” Mother turned to Tata and said in a stern tone, “Mr. Tata, God does not require our advice. You might instead concentrate on doing your bit by trying to create more jobs!” This has been recorded by Tata himself.

Yes the world is packed with misery by way of providing opportunities for us to experience Ananda. Pure and true joy comes not from expensive vacations, but from service to the Lord. Think about it!



Volume - 2 Issue - 7 Radiosai Journal - PSN 2004