- Religion and Philosophy»
- The Role of Religion in History & Society
Human life must culminate in service and sacrifice!
Sacrifice is real Joy!
Life moves on over hills and valleys. Relentlessly it moves whether it passes through ocean or desert. Some people feel that we should always go through good tidings. Yes, the aim is good, but is it possible? Look at the earth and see whether it is smooth throughout? No, only those who never move an inch from their home may think like that. Life is really full of efforts and struggles for most of the people. We are not aware, how people are living in many places on earth, deprived of their habitations and livelihood? They are not able to get even one meal a day. Many are undernourished, emancipated and live in most pitiable conditions. Media depicts those scenes in detail. Why this pathetic state, when some nations are living in luxury and comfort? Why the countries which are rich do not extend an helping hand to provide for those unfortunate people?
God has blessed certain people with abundant wealth. They invest their money in shares, gold and real estate. But they think twice to dole out few rupees to the deprived lot. But, there are certain philanthropic people who invest their wealth for the betterment of such deprived lot. This investment will reap lot of good will and gratitude from the poor. This is real joy, everyone must experience. There is joy in giving and not in getting. This is the fundamental philosophy of human life. There is a beautiful verse in the Upanishads, “Immortality could be achieved only through sacrifice. Neither your wealth, nor progeny could secure the exalted state. The Bible too emphasizes charity to the poor. During the period of Jesus, wealthy people were leading a life in an obnoxious manner. There were frequent parties where wine is served liberally to the wealthy guests. Rich food was served to the guests. The servants spend their life and energy in serving those rich masters without proper compensation. They were like slaves to the wealthy lot. Jesus was pained much at the condition of the servants.
His sermons contain many teachings about the dangers of wealth and the false pride; it creates in the mind of those wealthy people. Once, Sathya Saibaba told a gathering, “Treat the wealth you are blessed with as a “Trust from God”. It is not meant for your selfish needs. The rich one should share their wealth with the poor and destitute. Then only the rich will find fulfillment. A well will yield more water when it is drawn. Stagnant water will be polluted. |Hence share your resources with the have not. Look at the river. It flows always quenching the thirst of not only human beings but also the animals, birds and trees on its banks. Just like the flowing river, the wealthy should serve their fellow man.
I heard that after amazing billions of dollars in business, Ford was one day bedridden with some deadly disorder in health. This made him to ponder. All along my life, my only concern was wealth and hence I toiled day and night to build this business empire. Not a day, I thought of helping the poor with my money. Hence forth, I will apportion a good part of my wealth in philanthropy. The moment, he took this grand decision, his health started improving. Thus the “Ford Foundation”, which alleviates the suffering of many people, in many ways in third world countries was founded. Similarly, Bill and Melinda Gates of Microsoft developed an interest in common people and gave away huge amounts for treatment of AIDS and other deathly diseases in poor countries, especially in African countries. In India, we have many such business magnets engaged in philanthropy, who gave away a portion of their profit for improving the living condition of many villagers in the spheres of health, education and drinking water etc. Now social responsibility is part of the company laws. Wherever there is displacement of people for factories and projects, the management should invest in schemes to improve the living condition of those displaced by providing education, employment and sustained ways of livelihood. Sathya Sai Organization has done yeoman service for the poor villagers, around by providing drinking water, health care facilities and free educational Institutes wherein one can pursue his education upto MBA level absolutely free. Students are admitted through a competitive examination and no bias is shown with regard to nationality, religion, language or caste. For the past twenty years of its existence, many graduates and post graduates have passed out of this august institute.
In addition to secular education, they received spiritual education as part of their curriculum where character building is given the highest importance. It is no wonder that the students of Sathya Sai Institutes are the most sought after in many leading companies of the world for the discipline, sincerity, service oriented attitude and other human values. Now they are spread all over the globe, helping the poor people in their locality by conducting free feeding, free healthcare, free education and giving the poor with dresses, shoes, blankets and other essential items for their existence. Wherever possible, the students even construct simple shelters for the poor to save them from vagaries of weather. All these service activities are undertaken without any fanfare! ‘THE HANDS THAT SERVE ARE HOLIER THAN THE LIPS THAT PRAY”-Sathya Sai Baba.