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Selfless Service Seen In Parents Only

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5/19/2015 9:25:30 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
You say that devotee should serve God without aspiring any fruit in return just like parents serve their children. But, parents serve their children expecting fruit in return, which is the expected service from them in the old age.

Swami replied:
The parents always serve their children without expecting any fruit in return. There is no trace of doubt in this concept. The mother gives milk to her child due to her excess of love to it. Does the mother give milk to her child expecting that the child will return all the milk by giving a cup of milk everyday to her in old age? Hence, during the time of service to their children, the parents are selfless completely. In the old age, when their grown up child gives milk to his wife and children without offering even a drop of milk to them, the parents are seriously hurt due to human jealousy and start scolding their son. Of course, the son is also sinful. Such reaction from the parents is based on the selfish behaviour of the son, who becomes ungrateful to the parents.

The reaction of the parents is based on the nature of such unjust behaviour of the son in that specific context. The reaction of the parents is not based on the concept that the milk given by them to him in the childhood was not returned to them. In the place of their son, if there is some outsider, the parents will fight with him even in the absence of such specific context because the reaction here is based on concept of collecting back the loan given by them to the outsider. Therefore, the concept given by Me in the case of parents is perfectly correct and should not be misunderstood with respect to their reaction based on a specific context. If the son remains unmarried and serves the parents without giving milk to them, they will not scold him for not giving the milk. In fact, in such context, they will give milk to their son continuously.

The service is constituted by two parts. One is sacrifice of the fruit of work (Karmaphala tyaga) and the other is the sacrifice of work (Karma Samnyasa). The Lord stressed on these two concepts in the Gita. He received the butter, curd and milk from the shepherd ladies (Gopikas), which is the best example of Karmaphala tyaga. The butter etc., are the fruits of their work done to the cows. He received sacrifice of work, which is fighting with evil people, from Arjuna and this is Karma Samnyasa. The father is the best example for Karmaphala tyaga, who does strenuous work to earn the wealth, which is sacrificed to his children without expecting any fruit in return.

The mother stands as best example for karma Samnyasa, who does lot of work in the form service to the child from its birth. Of course, in the present time, the ladies are also employed and can come into the first part of service also. In any case, work and fruit of work are one and the same. Work is the form of energy and fruit of work is the matter. Both energy and matter are inter-convertible. If you sacrifice the work, you have sacrificed the fruit of work also. If you sacrificed the fruit of work, you have sacrificed the work also. In the case of God, people are certainly sacrificing some work and some fruit of work. But, the whole defect is that in both cases, the fruit in return is expected at least in the mind if not in the words. This single defect is spoiling the whole service like a pot of milk getting spoiled by a drop of poison.

People expect the fruit in return in two ways. One is the fruits in this life on this earth itself. The second is the fruit expected in the upper world after death like protection from hell. Shankara says that both should be totally dropped out (Ihaamutra Phala Viraagah). It is very difficult to drop both these expectations in single stage. Therefore, you can drop the first set of fruits concerned to this world by the following logic: The fruits in this world can be obtained by our sincere work also.

posted by: surya (disciple of Swamiji)