Seva isn't constricted to be within the walls of gurdwaras and no extra browny points for punching your seva card in gurdwaras


By J Jaks

A lot of good has happened. A lot of things to be thankful for.

Since I was about 10 years old, I had always been lucky. I have always achieved most of what I wanted. Luck and seva (selfless service) were two constant thing in my life. I never pondered why I always got most of what I wanted. It wasn’t necessary; I was young and carefree.

With every extra candle added to my birthday cake, and “wisdom” gained, I developed the ability to ponder about life. Ponder about everything I saw and experienced. But alongside these customary blessings, age also gifted me fear.

Fear caused me to worry. It became the gateway for anxiety to creep in and I began to believe my lucky days were numbered or that they were bottled in a jar by a superpower and were reaching its bottom.

This fear was natural because seva was no longer constant in my new lifestyle so how can luck be?

Yet I could not bring myself to change my lifestyle. Many attempts to bring back seva were futile because I did not get the same joy I did as a child. Seva in gurdwaras became laborious and boring.

Seva as an adult had a complete new setting. With age I gained access to the adult section. Things are done differently here. There is a lot less running compared to the children section. Adult seva curtailed a lot of staying put in your station until the job is done or until you yield. And if you hang around long, you’ll begin to notice the soft chatter these ladies hold. Not partaking in the seva chatter made me stick out like a sore thumb. Partaking, made me arrogant. Talk about a catch 22 situation.

So naive and closed minded I was for believing that the only way to keep my jar of luck filled to the brim was through religious rules; a man-made system (I’m not atheist).

Seva isn’t constricted to be within the walls of gurdwaras and no extra browny points for punching your seva card in gurdwaras. Because seva is an act that can take place anywhere and anytime. Regardless of creed, colour, religion, shape and ability.

I have not found the answer but seva outside the gurdwaras is a good start for now. I have a long way to go to rise above the fear system. A long journey to liberisation. An upheaval climb in believing we are One. An arduous journey to love all like my brothers and sisters. A long way still.

J Jaks, not her real name, plans to share more of her real and imagined fears and joys.

* This is the opinion of the writer, organisation or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Asia Samachar.


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Forcing dreams (Asia Samachar, 23 Jan 2018)


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