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Selfless Living

A week back, I visited Sai Krushna Mandir to partake in the 96th birthday celebrations of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. During my stay, I had an opportunity to interact with the students of class 8.  As I enter my 80th birth year, I can safely say that I have gathered enough life lessons to share with youngsters. The teachers were keen that I talk to the students on the topic of discipline and obedience. With Swami’s blessings, I was immediately reminded of a story that I decided to share with the children. 

We all know the Mango tree, with the spread of its branches and full of leaves. This mango tree does not require us to water it every day. There is so much the tree gives us, including the one thing everybody loves. Do you want that is? Yes, its fruits – mangoes. But do you know, there so many mangoes on a tree, but not all of them taste the same. Moreover, the tree bears fruits only during one time of the year. 

While the fruits are seasonal and in high demand, the tree’s leaves are used year long as a harbinger of auspiciousness. They decorate our doors during festivals and pooja. The same leaves also give us shade when we stand under the tree. And above all they remove carbon dioxide from the air by taking it in and releasing oxygen into our atmosphere. Thus, the tree purifies the air. And its roots, they spread out in all directions, binding the soil. 

Now let us take an in depth look.

The mango seed falls in a place even without an intention. The seed gets into the soil, it germinates into a sapling without any tender care or nourishment. It satisfies its water needs from the moisture in the soil all the time, without caring to store water for the next as we all normally do. As the tree grows, the trunk becomes broader carrying water to all the branches and to the leaves. As soon as it matures into a fully grown tree, it begins to flower.

 And very soon, the tall tree starts drooping with the weight of the umpteen fruits that decorate its branches, attracting young and old alike. The mango lovers try their luck at plucking the mangoes. Some risk climbing the tree, while some may use stones just to get a taste of the delicious fruit. In the process the tree may be subject to some damage.

 

When not in season, the tree attracts wood cutters who cut the branches or the entire tree for use as fuel or for commercial use as furniture. Whatever be the case, whoever may be the beneficiary, the tree gives without reservation. For all the people, the tree gives what it is capable of without any reservations. Even to the woodcutters, it provides shade from the scorching sun so that they may rest and sleep. The mango tree is a living example of selfless service. It offers all that it has to everyone, without an differentiation. 

 

Similarly, parents offer all that they have for the well being of their children. They work relentlessly, sacrificing their own pleasures, ignoring any discomfort solely to ensure that their children are happy and comfortable. They put their life savings into securing the future of their children.

 

And so does the teacher, who is selfless like a ladder, helping students to gain knowledge and come up in life. What a noble life the mango tree leads. Parents and teachers lead a their life in similar fashion too and all they expect is that their wards live a disciplined life, respecting their elders. 

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