I to we to Sai… April 6, 2009Posted by tharinid in Ceiling on desires, Divine Inspiration.
This is the idea behind the pilgrimage that Sai centers across Chicagoland and nearby regions are going to undertake the in the last week of June. Getting sanction for a group to come on a pilgrimage to Parthi is a very huge privilege and the opportunity of a lifetime to get within physical closeness of Swami. When I received these mails from the Center, I read very cursorily (not understanding the beautiful significance of it), and passed it off, because there was no way we would be able to go. 2 India trips in a gap of 6 months, meant a big bite into the pocket, and with R’s hectic work schedules, and the concern for the care of the kids, all combined, made me regard it as a very distant prospect for us.
That is all until I got a personal mail from one of the officers of my local Center with the same information of this pilgrimage I had earlier dismissed. He had addressed this mail specifically to me, asking me to attend the presentation this weekend. It troubled me, because I would have to offer yet another excuse of Winkie’s Sunday school engagement. Thinking I would send that mail later with my regrets, I moved onto a chore in the kitchen. And R who sat down with his coffee in front of the laptop, saw the mail and convinced me to go. He said he would drop me beforehand to the Center, take the boys to the temple for school, and then pick me up on the way back. He said it had come in my name, and I must not ignore it, for the sign it was.
And so, with some hesitation (since I was going to the Center after a whole year) and also a lot of excitement, to learn more about what this pilgrimage meant, I went. And just 5 minutes into the presentation, my eyes were welling up with tears and overflowing. For at that moment, I realised what a big blessing was being offered to the members of all these centers…to go as a group, stay there for a whole week dedicated to Swami, and be charged in that vibrant spiritual atmosphere. The person making the presentation had just returned from a monthlong stay at Parthi, and it was his request that Swami had granted, to give darshan to all the members here. Being there, in that surcharged atmosphere just brought the reality of seeing Him that much closer to me, and the desire to be part of the pilgrimage took fire and began to burn inside me. And only moments before, I had been of the mindset of…what was the need to see Him, when I was in constant dialogue with Him, anyways???
Its amazing how the very considerations of practicality which I used as reasons to justify not going on the pilgrimage, began to wither away, and every situation seemed to have a solution in my mind. Everything seemed possible, in the face of this once in a lifetime opportunity. But the fact that nothing is permanent asserts itself even here. The minute I got home, the world began to come into me once more, and the road blocks were up again. Money, time, kids, family, money…on and on it comes back in this loop. *sigh*. Its been a long time since I took something as such a huge blow. The last date for registration is April 15, and I will continue to torture myself until then, I am sure.
One of the nicest things that evolved during the presentation was the subject of unity and inclusiveness, to include even the non-pilgrims to involve themselves in the preparation for this trip. Volunteer services were requested for different areas to help ready the rest of the group even if they themselves were not going. One opportunity includes some proofreading, editing, designing work which I think I will volunteer for. It will afford me some form of contribution and help me lick my wounds. Another wonderful cropped up, to include non-pilgrims in the sadhana effort aspect as well.
Talk of sadhana reminded of one of the most important things in Swami’s 9 point code of conduct….ceiling on desires. It was something I talked about a long time ago and then conveniently forgot all about. Perhaps disappointments in life are good after all….they seem to have the energy to effect the climate of change. As for the change itself, time, and sadhana with Grace, will tell. For now, I have picked up the first desire I want to slowly, but surely, get rid of from where it is deeply entrenched, the desire to raise my voice, yell and talk in harsh tones. It simply has to go. So I offer it to Swami, on a little chit of paper, written proof of my sincere resolve, and hope that I will be able to kick it.