Seva, A Part of Life
Seva, or selfless service, is an integral part of the spiritual path. We perform seva in many aspects of life and seva in the service of the guru is one such aspect. Such seva is accomplished in many ways. Helping at retreats, workshops or public programs where Ma is present is one way. Being active with our local groups, hosting meditation programs, webcasts is another. Reaching out to fellow disciples in need is yet another. No matter what situation, seva has the power to transform.
Sharing these experiences is a great way to understand the benefits and power of seva, so please send us an experience that you’d like to share of a time when you had the opportunity to be of service to the Guru or the Guru’s work in any context.
To contribute a short experience (of a paragraph or less), you are welcome to write or copy and paste your seva experience in the field below. You can send us a larger experience by clicking the contact tab above. If you would like to send a recording or something by mail, let us know using the contact form and we’ll get back to you and tell you how to do that.
The following is part of this ongoing series:
Whatever I do, I don’t think of it as doing seva because that will bring ego into the work. When it becomes a part of life, like when we wake up and brush our teeth and go to work, then it doesn’t become a burden, it becomes a joy. When it is a routine in your life, it’s enjoyable. Your attitude makes a big difference. For example, you are paid for doing a job, and the next person is also paid for doing the same job, but you’re doing it with joy and not thinking of it as a burden. So you have two people: one is told to do seva, one is doing it because she wants to do it without thinking of it as seva, then that person feels more joy and more gain than “just a paycheck.” Seva is my paycheck and enjoyment.
You may call what I do seva, but I don’t think so – I’m just doing it, for the Guru or for my parents or friends.
There is another benefit too. If I do something good for you as a friend or family member or Guru, my children automatically see that. I don’t have to send my children to a special school to try to learn to be good human beings. Automatically, indirectly, I’m gaining so much because my children are learning this. I’m creating a positive atmosphere for them. I can’t count on a “return” from seva, but after twenty years of raising my kids, I see it has paid off.
Seva is a big word. It’s hard to do without expectations. Only a saint can do that. But if I see it as just a part of life —if you come to my house, I take care of you; I’m nice to a person who’s nice to me — then it’s easy and I never think I’m doing anything.
My definition of seva is that I never consider what I do to be seva. My job is to do the job God gave me the strength to do. It’s no special thing. Then I enjoy it, and I gain a lot back.
A slideshow about seva can be found here.