“I will never give up on You…” – By B. Subramani

Lord Vardhaman Mahavir in a Jain Temple in Mumbai
I had finished my day’s work. I came out of office and started walking towards Parel station (Mumbai suburban station) from where I always catch a train for home. On the way to the station, there is a Jain temple – a majestic white building with the door to the sanctum sanctorum facing the road. Any person walking on the road can get a glimpse of the Divine Lord seated there in a lotus posture. In the evening, this presents a most serene view as all lights are off in the temple and only two lamps are kept lit. The sight fills one with a strange peace. 

As I walked, I was feeling guilty for not having submitted the article on time. At the same time I was feeling helpless at not being able to put my thoughts into words. This is when I crossed the temple and as I turned to look at the figure of Lord Mahavira, my eyes fell on a man standing on the road between the temple and myself. He caught my attention as he was carrying a heavy load (an iron trunk) on his head. He was a little on the older side and looked quite troubled. As I looked at him, he seemed to be conversing with the Lord and making gestures with a wave of hand as if asking, why he was being made to suffer and when his misery would end. This sight triggered a rush of thoughts that started me on this note. 

As I sat down to write this, a thought passed my mind that probably the man was not questioning as to when his sorrows would end but was actually asking when the Lord would take over his load. I also realised that my thoughts had started flowing the moment I had stopped worrying about writing the article and had looked up to the Lord to help me. In effect, I had cast off my load and He had readily taken over. 

What better theme could I latch on to, than to share the simple teachings that we tend to ignore in our daily life, especially in our professional life, the slip-ups that the ever-merciful Lord conveniently forgets when it comes to showering His Love. He takes over in spite of our resisting Him. 


With Swami’s Grace, I have tried to pick up those very simple things which I have in past overlooked and have later realised their importance. I am submitting these follies (from my own experience) which, when avoided can help each one of us tremendously. 

Start Early… says Swami if one has to reach safely. How many times does it happen that we find the time allotted for an activity to be insufficient or we are faced with the proverbial eleventh hour tasks? In all this mad rush we end up missing something important or even turn up with a mediocre performance. Work expands (and sometime overflows) to fill the time available.  An example that comes to my mind is from the area of sales where annual targets are to be achieved. It is invariably true that the sales teams spend first few months of the year without much activity, simply because they had overexerted in the last few months of the previous financial year. The so called run-rate (target per day to be achieved in remaining days) keeps climbing up slowly until it looks like a vertical climb ahead. The common complaint at this time is that the targets are too high. Then there is a whole list of activities and contingency plans and …..if only we had started early! 

Talk Less…. Swami never gets tired of telling us to talk less and to be careful of the sins committed by the tongue. Idle talking and backbiting are the two most dangerous components of the socio-political atmosphere of an office. In the last few years of my brief professional career, I have seen people at all levels getting caught on the wrong foot, just because they opened their mouth at the wrong time and place and spoke more than what was required – a senior official trying to score a point over his colleague, an officer from one department trying to put down another department and so on. There is no dearth of such episodes. But as Swami says, it is better to talk less about such things. That’s the surest way to escape unscathed! 

Almost every time Swami speaks to us, He emphasises the importance of Self-confidence. And each time He has explained the meaning of this word. While it is easy to mistake the voice of our mind as originating from the inner core, it is not difficult to listen to that Indweller. Doubts surface very often when one’s decision is questioned and is subjected to criticism. At times it seems that one’s suggestions are being rejected and those of others, though less pertinent, are being accepted. It starts the vicious cycle of self-condemnation and castigation resulting into impatience and a loss of heart. In the worst of times, however, I have seen people bounce back, riding on the wave of faith in the Lord and on the confidence in the Self. 

Remarks are more important than marks. Scoring a few points over others may help one get forward in the short run but ultimately it is the work and nature of the person that sets him apart. If we look around in our organisations, we will find more and more people trying to gather what we call the ‘brownie points’ by being in the good books of the boss. At the same time I have found that those who excel in knowledge, work and behavior earn all the respect. These are the people who keep silent and let their work speak volumes. This is true in any unit, be it a batch of students, a team of players or a group of professionals. 

Preaching without practicing is easy. Most of us tend to be like the direction pointers that show the way to a destination but that never go there and I must say I am no exception to this trait. One cannot deny that the impact of our actions is much stronger than that of our words. There are examples abound which ratify this simple and basic principle. One can’t be a leader unless he leads by example. Children learn from the actions of their parents. Students follow what the teachers do.  Don’t we have the best example in front of us all? Swami never talks but shows and guides us by His actions. Only one who practices can say ‘Hands that help are holier than lips that pray’.   

Tell me your company… At every stage of our growing up, we are constantly reminded of this statement. Instinctively we know whom to make friends with and whom not to. It is the signal system installed by the Lord in each of us, which attunes us to good and keeps us away from bad. Even at the cost of repetition, I say that one’s company determines not only one’s personality but also gets reflected in one’s work. It is Swami’s incomparable Love that every time we come into harmful circles; He ensures that a helping hand pulls us out. I am sure that if we look back and think about our lives, we would all recollect many occasions when we were on the brink of a disaster or failure because of some person whom we had wrongly trusted, and suddenly the fog had lifted, and everything reappeared in order. Who else can manage it so neatly? 

Each of us is a student in Swami’s school and college and I am sure we all want to stay that way, for we cannot find a more Loving and Caring Teacher. He nudges and cajoles us to keep us on track. He tempts us to learn all the time. He scolds and forces us to go through testing times so as to make us stand up stronger after each fall. He waits lovingly until we get tired of our foolishness of committing the same mistakes again and again ……He will never give up on us! 


- B. Subramani
Student (1996-1998), Department of Management Studies
Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning, Prasanthi Nilayam
Currently, Business Head at Forpple Consulting, Mumbai 



2 comments:

  1. So beautifully written brother. Some of Swami's simple lessons are the ones most people ignore, but its that very same teaching that will give us happiness.
    Thank you for this reminder. It is good to be reminded over and over again.

    Sairam

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sairam, thank you sir. I am so grateful after reading this article.

    ReplyDelete

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