This is a post about My Master. It is about His relationship with water. A humble attempt to cover the following aspects:
#1, #2, #3 and #4- How he gave water; #5 How he consumed water and #6: Water that he seeks from us
#1 – Anything for others; Any amount of effort for the poor
For years I have known about the incredible contributions that My Master has steered to alleviate the suffering of those who were victims of a severe water crisis for decades in the second most arid regions of our Country, i.e the villages of the dry land of Anantapur district. 1.25 million people across 731 villages benefitted from this project that was executed with an outlay of Rs 300 Crores. It was executed in a record time of 18 months. (To know more read https://www.srisathyasai.org/pages/sai-anantapur.html)
#2 – Life lived for others. Physical pain endured to serve others.
Lets go back in time, all the way back when My Master was a school going student in the village of Kamalapuram. Every single day, he would himself walk a few miles to bring water on his tender shoulders for not only his home but also many others in the street. And at the well, he would assist all the old people who would find it streneous to draw water from the well. To see more do watch this video https://youtu.be/cOjK59JO9Ww?t=405 (From 6:45 onwards).
#3 – Emphatic declaration and confidence to face all odds and be successful in serving society
“…..On this sacred occasion, I have decided to undertake yet another service project. In Chennai, there is scarcity of drinking water. The rich can afford to get water through tankers and lorries, but what about the poor? They spoil their health by drinking polluted water from ponds and puddles. Hence, whatever may be the difficulty, I have decided to provide drinking water to the people of Chennai. The waters of the rivers Godavari and Krishna are being drained into the sea without being properly utilized. Even in Rayalaseema, people are suffering from water scarcity. The districts of Bellary, Anantapur, Cuddapah, and Kurnool are classified as backward regions. I want to provide pure drinking’ water to all these four districts also. This project is bound to be successful. There is no doubt about it.….” – 19th January 2002, excerpt from discourse delivered on the occassion of first anniversary of Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences, Bangalore.
To know more, one must watch this 4 part video series:
#4 – No Tap water at residence for atleast a few decades
Water from the rivers and well has been the only source of water for My Master throughout his childhood and even in his 30’s. What was available to all those who came to see him, it was the same that was available for him also. Do we even know the count of number of taps in our homes? I bet you dont know. Such is the lives of privilege we lead. Water for every need had to be drawn from the well and stored in pots for use during the day for all purposes. When many urged and pleaded that a pipeline be laid, he insisted that it should then be provided to all the devotees who gathered and resided in the vicinity. My Master allways thought of others before himself. I would say, He never thought about himself. (To know more see this video https://youtu.be/LIw2Y75BXcw)
#5 – Every drop matters to Him
How would we use water? Lets take two instances (I have learnt of these from those who have been close to him)
We (including myself): After we finish eating our meals, we would go over to the wash basin to wash our hands and rinse our mouths. We would collect some water in our hands and sip it up. Hold the water in our mouth, move it around so that any food particiles left in the mouth is washed up and then we would spit this water back into the sink.
My Master: After he ate his meal, while at the dining table itself, he would sip some water and rinse his mouth to bring out the food particles left in the mouth and then swallow it down his throat.
He would say why waste water and the few food particles. Why spit it away into the wash basin?
We (including myself): We open the tap. wet our tooth brush. Close the tap. Put some paste on. Brush our teeth. Open the tap. Wash our tooth brush. Collect water in our hands to rinse and clean our mouth. Close the tap. Keep back our brush and paste in its place.
My Master: Open the tap. Collect water in a mug – only as much needed. Close the tap. Use water from the mug for his brushing needs.
(By why so? While we collect water in our hands to rinse our mouth, during the movement of our hands from the tap to our mouth and then back again to the tap, although just a few seconds, that much water is wasted down the drain.)
He would say, if u use the tap, then u dont know how much water u are using daily. But since he first collects it in the mug, he uses only as much needed and the same amount every day. Never more, not even a few drops !
#6 – All he asks is just a few drops
He has given water, millions of litres to alleviate the suffering of the poor residing in water stressed regions of the country. Inspired by his work, many volunteer groups have undertaken water supply service projects for the poor across the world.
He has however counted every drop of water that he uses and consumed consciously and judiciously only as much needed.
He has given much. He has consumed much much less and He seeks even lesser from us.
What pleases him the most? He says, shed just a few tear drops of sincere love and devotion and that is enough to melt his heart. What does this signify? To shed tear drops is to deeply feel, experience and live a life of gratitude and love for Him and His teachings and His way of life and living.
All that he asks is just a few drops…..