Mr. S. Bhatt, a Sadhak at the Institute, was requested by a volunteer to take charge of the last half hour of the 7 days Residential Camp, as she had to go home to attend religious ceremonies.
The Sadhaka agreed. A group of thirty was to present their own farewell program and he was just supposed to be the In-charge – observe, comment, or may be interact for just one minute as there would not be much time and people would be anxious to go back to their homes.
Having accepted the assignment, the man wondered as to of what purpose! Slowly it dawned upon him that it was perhaps Lord’s way of making him to learn.
Three campers staged a play – a group of friends enjoying life in parties, smoking, drinking and one of them taking to yoga and helping his friends to give up their bad habits. Three others acted one activity of each day’s teaching, Asanas, Pranayamas, Bhajans. One item was singing and swaying to the tune of “Hare Rama, Hare Krishna” with large bead necklaces and chanting.
True to the expectation, the group took exact one hour to finish! Now, the sadhak had to take over charge. The committed man shared his observations with the group.
They were all ‘seekers’ who had come from different parts of the world, willing ‘listeners and learners’, who were heartily laughing during their first lesson that in spite of worldly worries, one has the choice to laugh and be happy.
The second lesson: while chanting the three Australian girls unconsciously and slowly got into the rhythm and there was clear sign of spirituality on their faces. It was a learning that religion is not mere rituals but spirituality.
Then he turned the tables on the group, that now they will talk and he would listen. But there was a rider. One person at a time, just one word and one minute. This would be a new quality which each one would imbibe in his/her life after they leave the institute.
The Australian girl said ‘Non-violence’, another ‘Honesty’, a gentleman would take to ‘Time Management’.
The sadhak pointed out to them that one quality ‘Non-violence’ enabled Mahatma Gandhi to win freedom for India. Barrack Obama promised to would-be voters during his campaign that he would always be honest with them and he has become the President of America. Similarly each one of them could inculcate one new quality in life, practice and succeed. They had a whole life ahead.
Learning is an unending process. One must keep learning while he/she is alive. Otherwise one will be physically alive, but mentally dead.
Mr. Bhatt, the sadhaka who supervised was happy that good learning occurred in the group.
Published in the July 2010 edition of Yoga & Total Health Magazine.