5. Crossing the Ocean
During the daytime, a window opens our vision to the horizons. At night,
it reflects back only a picture of ourselves. The mind is like a window.
It has no color or quality of its own, yet it reflects all that we see.
If the light of our intellect is focused outside, it reveals the whole
world. If it shines only on ourselves, it reflects a narrow vision of
our ego. The act of service helps us to focus outside ourselves. It
shows us that we are an inseparable part of the divine creation.
The joy of service grows and blossoms into detachment. When we serve
God in others, we find that the Lord is resident in our own hearts also.
Desire for personal gain vanishes and we experience lasting happiness.
If the essential step of service is not practiced, then how can we know
One cannot cross the ocean of this cycle of births and deaths by
visiting many sacred places, nor can one do it by performing japa
and studying Sastras (holy books). It is only possible to do so by
performing seva, or service.
Summer Showers 1973
The spiritual fact is that we can grow only by expressing love in action.
The inspiring truth is that we should be grateful to those who allow
us to serve them --- who have given us an opportunity to approach closer
to God. And most humbling and most exalting – because all exists in
Oneness – is the fact that when we serve others, we are actually
only serving ourselves!