Such a multitude of religions, castes, Gods, cultures, cuisines, languages, scriptures, music, rituals etc… all are part of vibrant whole. This is India. I am fortunate and proud to be an Indian. I salute all the freedom fighters, who fought together without any barriers of caste and religion and got freedom to this country. They were the first to volunteer for a better India.
But when I look at our country today, I wonder, “Have we really got the freedom or are we still ruled by corruption and violence?” When you look at the recent incidents of violence against women, female foeticide, use of innocent people for vote banks, rampant illiteracy.. it makes me worry! Is India safe? How secure is our children’s future?
I had always wanted to do something for the country, but I didn’t know where to start, what to do and how to reach out to people. And then I would console myself by thinking, “let me take care of myself and my family first then think about the Nation.”
One time, I was in an Advance Meditation Course at Art of Living international Ashram. Swamiji was sharing an incident. It was in the early eighties, when Art of Living Ashram was under construction. The few rooms and toilets that existed were not sufficient to accommodate the people who came to stay in ashram to do Art of Living residential programs. Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar was not in the Ashram. One day Swamiji received a call from Sri Sri to give money to a particular volunteer, as he was constructing toilets in the village nearby and he was short of money.
Swamiji suggeted to Sri Sri that since Ashram itself was short of money to construct toilets in the ashram, it would be better to donate to others after fulfilling the requirements of the Ashram.
Sri Sri replied, “There is no end to our requirements. Once one need gets fulfilled, another arises. If we think that we will serve others after our requirement get fulfilled, then we will never do it. Work for the Nature and Nature will take care of us.”
“After listening to this, there was a shift in my attitude towards life,” shared Swamiji .
Art of Living gave me a platform to do something good for the society. I got involved with projects where I could work for slums, villages, prison inmates, orphanages, old-age homes, rural colleges etc. I was really amazed when people started showing so much of love and gratitude to me. I was very happy to see them all happy. The satisfaction was deep and ultimate. When you help someone without any expectation, it is SEVA. I was stunned to see the tears of gratitude & love for me in their eyes and the blessings for me & my family.
Somewhere deep inside, everyone has the desire to do something good for the society. But we all are caught up in Family Responsibilities and commitments. Most of us might also be thinking like me, where to start? how to start? It is difficult to work alone as an individual, etc. A stick can be broken easily compare to a bundle of sticks. We can bring the change only when we all work together. No one can break us when we all are together. We can do wonders only when we all are together.
As Sri Sri says, It is our nature to love. We love our parents, sister, brother, friends, wife/husband etc and express our love towards them by giving them what they want or like. Similarly, we have love towards our Country, but we do not know how to express it. The best way to express the love towards the country is by stretching our hands to become a volunteer for a better India — giving one hour a day for our nation.
Cine Director Mr. Srikanth Addala has given a very beautiful message in a recently released Telugu movie Seethamma Vakitlo Sirimalle Chettu. Acclaimed actor Prakash Raj plays the role of hero’s father and his character is brilliant. He is a simple and happy man always wearing a big smile. In one scene, Prakash Raj tells his children, “everyone here is good but sometimes situation makes them behave differently and they are not the same always. Am your father only in this life, you both are brothers only in this life. So live it fully with love and what we take when we die.” These lines touched me very deeply.
I might be Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Jain, Buddhist, male, female etc only for this life. So let us all live together with the sense of belongingness and work together for the betterment of India.
Sri Sri is giving all of us a multi faceted platform to work together for the betterment of our country. He is launching “Volunteer for a Better India“ on 3rd Feb,2013. As an Indian , I would be happy to volunteer and Give an hour to the Nation. How about You?
Contact 0114608066, 4608966
By Bhavana Sunitha, a Volunteer for a Better India
Related Links on Art of Living Blog:
Let’s make a better India – VFABI
Volunteer for a Better India, it makes sense
Let Spiritual People take the Bull by the Horns
Volunteer for a Better India, says Desi Videshi
Time to Volunteer for a better India
Volunteer for a better India