The Greatest Privilege
Look upon every man, woman, and everyone
You cannot help anyone,
you can only serve.
Serve the children of the Lord,
serve the Lord Himself,
if you have the privilege.
If the Lord grants that you can help
anyone of His children,
blessed you are.
Do not think too much of yourselves.
Blessed you are that that privilege
was given to you when others had it not.
Do it only as worship.
I should see God in the poor,
and it is for my salvation
that I go and worship them.
The poor and the miserable
are for our salvation,
so that we may serve the Lord,
coming in the form of the diseased,
coming in the shape of the lunatic,
the leper, and the sinner!
Bold are my words;
And let me repeat
that it is the greatest privilege in our life
that we are allowed to serve the Lord
in all these shapes.
Give up the idea that by ruling over others
you can do any good to them.
But you can do just as much as you can
as in the case of a plant:
You can supply the growing seed with the materials
for the making up of its body,
bringing to it the earth, the water, the air
that it wants.
It will take all that it wants
by its own nature,
it will assimilate and grow by its own nature.
Bring all light into the world.
Light, bring light!
Let light come unto everyone.
The task will not be finished
till everyone has reached the Lord.
Bring light to the poor,
and bring more light to the rich,
for they require it more than the poor.
Bring light to the ignorant,
and more light to the educated,
for the vanities of the education of our time
Thus bring light to all
and leave the rest unto the Lord,
for in the words of the same Lord:
‘To work you have the right
and not to the fruits thereof.’
‘Let not your work produce results for you,
and at the same time
may you never be without work.’
May He who taught such grand ideas
to our forefathers ages ago
help us to get strength
to carry into practice His commands!
– Swami Vivekananda