To serve or not

To serve or not

Any humble human being would consider it a privilege to serve others and make others happy.  May be you have much wealth but you are not happy. You have a well paid and respected job and yet you are not happy. It could happen that others praise you or appreciate you but you, in your heart of hearts are not happy. You are not satisfied. You do not experience a sense of well being. May be it is high time you learnt the meaning of genuine service and the joy and happiness that it gives.

Mahatma Gandhi was not a poor man but made himself a poor man to identify himself with the masses of the poor and set out to serve the impoverished and the oppressed of all sorts. People praised him and hung on his words but what gave him immense joy was only service. He would not hesitate to take the broom and sweep or clean the toilets or sit and spin at his charka like any poor labourer.

This definitely gave him peace and joy and he himself has said so a number of times. A former prime minister like Lal Bahadur Sahstri was comparatively a poor man and did not amass wealth and was a contented, simple man who exulted in service to the nation.  Jesus, too, has given an example of service. He says explicitly: "I came to serve and not to be served unto". At the Last Supper before his death he gave an example of humble service by washing the feet of his disciples!

So it is not wealth that will give you happiness; your vast erudition can only make you head-strong but service to others can certainly give you genuine peace and happiness. Such a service mindedness flows out of genuine humility which is nothing but in truth to accept our basic human weaknesses and inadequacies.

Look around and you are sure to find a number of occasions wherein you can be of service to your neighbour. Sometimes it happens that we look far a field to serve when perhaps the person we should serve is my husband, wife, child or aged parents.
It is also true that it is not the greatness of the task but rather the simple tokens of care and concern, even a look or a word of sympathy can be a service needed by that person at that time. So try to do simple service to others and find the joy and peace that is eluding you right now.