Tuesday, Nov 13 2018
IF GOD DOES EVERYTHING, WHY DOES MAN NEED TO PUT IN ANY EFFORT? - 12 APRIL 2004
My humble pranams at the Divine Lotus Feet of Swami.
Sai Ram uncles, aunties, brothers and sisters. I am Bro Aditya from Group 4. My topic for today is a question many of us may ask -"If God does everything, why does man need to put in any effort?"
Imagine a life whereby we have not put in the slightest effort, but we are living a comfortable life, free from difficulties. This appears to be gratifying at this instant, but actually, there is no latent meaning in leading such a life. Even an ant has to put in effort to search for its food and so are all creations of God.
How many of us want to get everything in life and just sleep all day long, thinking that God will do everything for us. Can I have a show of hands please? I am sorry to say this is impossible.
Swami says that everyone has a Dharma or duty to perform. We must all put in the effort in following our Dharma so that our society will run in an organized manner.
Swami says, "Dharma is like a mother. One can choose a wife, but no one can choose a mother. Dharma is in the same position as one's mother is. We have no choice .We cannot transform Dharma, but put in our best foot forward when performing it"
For instance, a student's Dharma is to study hard to attain academic excellence while a parent's Dharma is to foster purity and good qualities in their child. But everyone needs to put in some effort when following his or her Dharma.
Furthermore, Swami has said "Life is a game, Play it. Life is challenge, Meet it." The thought of failing is what intimidates us, causing us to buckle under pressure. If we fail, we must discover new methods to achieve success. Only then, will we find joy because of just one reason - that we have put in immense effort in trying to achieve our goals.
Let me share with you the story of the horseman and his lazy horse. When the horse was thirsty, the horseman could only take the lazy horse up to the river, but the horse was refusing to make any effort to drink water. At this point, the horseman cannot pump water into the mouth of the horse!! Like the horseman, God will only show us the way; we must put in our effort.
I am now going to share with everyone a very important formula that Swami has given us - Grace is proportional to Effort
Let me share a personal experience. I am guilty of blaming God for my failures. When I was in Sec.2, I studied very hard for my examinations, but to my utter dismay, I did not achieve the results that I was aiming for. So, I blamed God for not helping me. I also went a step further and said, "There is no such thing as God". I told myself that I am no longer going to put in effort in anything I do. But eventually, I realized that God wanted me to learn from my mistakes and do even better the next time.
Brothers and sisters, many of you must have also experienced similar situations. Don't worry. As long as we put in our best effort, God's Grace will be won, even if that means not getting exactly what we were hoping for. Swami says 'It does not matter if we don't get a rank, but we should not be blank'.
Professor Anil Kumar's once shared that Swami interestingly compares poetry and prose.poetry and prose may contain similar words and convey the same meanings, but people would love to hear a poem and would not always appreciate a prose. Hence, we must put in our effort enthusiastically in our tasks to make life as colorful and lively as poetry and not dull and monotonous like prosaic.
Jai Sai Ram
SSEHV Group 4