A Master is never out of reach for the one who seeks Him out sincerely! I was blessed to experience it first hand.
It was January 2006. Art of Living Silver jubilee celebrations were around the corner. Bangalore Ashram had set up sort of Call Centre to attend to the enquiries that were pouring in from all parts of the world. Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar wanted two Kannada speaking volunteers to handle enquiries from Karnataka. I was one of them. Being on the phone all day gave me a rare opportunity to get a glimpse of the expanse of the phenomenon called the Art of Living. It was simply awe-inspiring to watch Sri Sri work tirelessly day in and day out attending to finer details of the upcoming jubilation. I was witness to the increasing tempo as the D- Day drew near.
I thought to myself “Sri Sri has no time to spare for anything till Art of Living Silver Jubilee celebrations get over.” The following incident proved how wrong I was!
We were just 3 days away from the global event. The count down had begun. That morning, at about 11 O’Clock, I answered a call from a simple villager from one of the remote villages in Karnataka. His voice was anxious and frantic.
He said, “Madam, my 8 year old son is very sick and we need to see Gurudev urgently. What should I do?”
‘Oh, you need to wait for a couple of days. You see, Gurudev is very busy now.’ I almost said those words but didn’t! Some Divine intervention propelled me to say instead, “Here is the telephone number of Sri Sri’s secretary. Please call up for an appointment”. I gave him Jaina’s number and promptly forgot all about it.
It was 2 O’clock the following afternoon. Just two days to go… Amidst the frenzy of incessant callers, I answered a call at random and said, ‘Jai Guru Dev’. The caller recognized my voice instantly.
“Madam, do you remember I had called yesterday? You were kind enough to help me. Gurudev has called us to the ashram at 4 pm today to see my son. Since we are coming to the Art of Living Ashram for the first time from a remote village, we were told that one of the volunteers would be at the Bangalore bus station to pick us up. I just wanted to inform we are here, waiting.”
I was stunned! All the hairs on my arms stood up stiff!. I also felt ashamed of myself. To think how I had almost said, ‘Gurudev has no time to see you now’ and how glad I was, not to have said it! He was seeing the gentleman and his ailing son!
Despite the forthcoming event, with the attendant confusion, chaos and commotion that had reached a crescendo, Sri Sri was seeing them!! At that instant it appeared to me as though Gurudev had all the time in the world, and nothing urgent was beckoning Him, whatsoever. How could I ever have thought of ‘speaking for Him?!’ Oh, the play of my little mind and my limited vision!
Looking back, I realize, it was the Will of the Divine for me to pick up both calls from the gentleman. The calls could have been attended by any volunteer in the Cell. Why me?! if not to drive home a message about the Ways of the Saints .. that, the Saints are never too busy for the devotees who need them genuinely.
The innocence, faith, prayer and the urgency has the power to draw the Master to us regardless of the pressing worldly matters. You could be a prince or a peasant, a celebrity or a nobody; it doesn’t make an iota of difference to Sri Sri He is always there, available, like an ocean. We just need to seek Him out, banishing all the doubting games that the little mind plays….What a great, invaluable lesson I learnt working in the Silver Jubilee Team! How grateful I am for the same…
By Leela Ramesh, Faculty-Art of Living