Spirituality Outside the Home > Seva > Benefits of Seva > ...

 

VIII 1. What are the physical, mental and spiritual benefits of Seva?

Purity: Remember that the body, with its senses-mind-brain complex has been awarded to you, to be used for helping the helpless---'Paropakarartham idam sareeram'. Seva is the highest of paths of Devotion which wins theGrace of God. It promotes mental purity, diminishes egoism and enables one to experience, through sympathetic understanding, the unity of mankind.
Sathya Sai Baba, 21 Nov 1986
 
Elimination of egotism: The greatest consequence of Seva is the elimination of egotism---Ahamkaara. Suurdas prayed that he be made the servant of the servant of the Lord, so that no trace of ego be left in him. This is the reason why the pupil who lived with the Guru, had to go with a bowl to beg his food. Suurdas said, "The Lord does not need my service; he has everything. He has many devotees more efficient than I. But these, His devotees, they are in distress; they need care; I shall serve them and uplift myself."
Sathya Sai Baba, 8 Mar 1967
 
He who dedicates his time, skill, and strength to service can never meet defeat, distress, or disappointment, for service is its own reward. His word will be ever sweet and soft, his gestures ever revered and humble. He will have no foe, no fatigue, and no fear.
Sathya Sai Baba, 28 Aug 1976
 
Inner Peace: Rendering Service selflessly with a compassionate heart is alone true Service. One is bound to attain peace if he serves in a friendly spirit. This is the truth.
Sathya Sai Baba, 19 Nov 1987
 
Bliss: In order to evolve oneself into a balanced individual, service is an essential quality. This ideal of service has the good quality of removing ego in man. It promotes love and affection. It takes him away from the aspect of worldly attachments and puts him on the path to the Divine. Service can give widespread pleasure and bliss for the entire mankind. In fact, service is the first step along the spiritual path.
Sathya Sai Baba, Summer Showers 1973
 
Self-realisation and World peace: All service should be regarded as an offering to God and every opportunity to serve should be welcomed as a gift from God. When service is done in this spirit, it will lead in due course to self-realisation. It is this kind of selfless, spiritually oriented service that is needed today. To a world riddled with conflict and chaos, this will provide a climate of serene peace.
Sathya Sai Baba, 19 Nov 1987
 
Shift of attention from deha to dehi: Service can be effective only when the feelings of 'I' and 'Mine' give place to 'God' and 'God's'. It is only when your attention is monopolised by the body and its needs, that egoism will grow in strength. When you direct your attention to the Anthar- aathma (Inner-self) which is God, then, you find the same God in all and a flood of reverence fills you and fertilises every act of yours. Saadhana is needed for redirecting the attention from the deha to the dehi---body to the soul. Establish this Bhaava-adwaitham (non-dual attitude) in your mind; it will render your service more enjoyable, more fruitful, more sweet and pleasant to the recipient
Sathya Sai Baba, 4 Nov 1965
 
God's Grace: I will give an example very well known to you. After your retirement, you are given pension. Why? It is the payment for your long service in a profession. So also, God's grace is bestowed on you for your service in the past. Another example. If you fill the tank with water during the rainy season, you will have water supply in summer. Is it not so? Therefore, service of today will help you receive God's grace later, undoubtedly. Sathya Sai Baba 2 Will seva confer equal benefits for all? All acts of service are not equally sanctifying or uniform in the benefits they confer. When service is undertaken by power-hungry people, or under compulsion or by imitative urges, it results in more harm than good. Self-aggrandizement or competition or ostentation are motives that will pollute the sacred Sadhana of Service.
Sathya Sai Baba, 21 Nov 1986