Prashanthi Nilayam Seva
Service is the highest spiritual discipline. Prayer and meditation, or knowledge of scripture and Vedanta (Holy Scriptures of India), cannot help you reach the goal as quickly as service can. Service has a double effect: it extinguishes the ego and gives bliss. – Baba
They will fold their hands and request you to stay in the queue. They will stay awake all night guarding your premises. They will help and guide you in the Ashram. They will clean the vessels in the canteen. They will serve food to the patience’s and hospitals and devotees in the canteen. The skilful among them will drive vehicles, work on computers. And all they do with love in their heart and a smile on their face. At their homes they could be farmers, doctors, drivers, professors, lawyers, government officials, software professionals, carpenters, or corporate executives; they could be from Sikkim, from Kerala, from Punjab or from anywhere across India. They could belong to any religion – Muslims, Christians, Hindus or Sikhs, they could poor or rich. These are the ubiquitous Sevadal volunteers who keep Prashanthi Nilayam ticking.
To anyone who visits Prashanthi Nilayam, the abode of Baba, the sight of “Sai Ram” – wishing scarf – clad sevadal is a refreshing sight in a world filled with object materialism. Be it in Sai Kulwanth Hall, the canteen, the hospital, the museum, the university or the bakery, one cannot but admire these men and women drawn from all walks of life and from all over India rendering service with expectation if virtually nothing from those who get served by them. The “Love Army” or “Messengers of Sai” created by Baba in 1960s, are affectionately termed as ‘seva dals’ and work with united loving spirit radiating the love of the Lord in their activities, completely in equanimity with their thoughts, words, and deeds.
How does one become a part of this “Love Army”? The very basis of metamorphism of a normal person into a Sri Sathya Sai Seva Dal is Sri Sathya Sai Samithi, the very foundation of Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organization. Inspired by other Sevadals, Service activities done by Samithis and Bhanjan Mandalis of Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organization, a person becomes a member of a Samithi/Bhajan Mandali nearby. Regardless of his status, cast, creed, colour, he would be treated equal among all the members. As a new comer he gets attracted by the love shown to him b one and all in the Samithi irrespective of their social standing, financial status, or educational credentials. There is no membership fee. There are more than 2 lakh sevadal volunteers, in addition to about 1 lack registered youth in the country. These volunteers are trained and briefed before 21 states of Sri Sathya Sai Organizations allocate them for Prashanthi Nilayam Seva.
The yearly voluntary service of 10 to 30 days each time for each state is an opportunity for service that these 2lack volunteers both men and women look forward to about 1500 such men and women are the sentinels of service everyday at Prashanthi Nilayam, Puttaparthi. They travel to and fro to Prashanthi Nilayam at their own expense.
Separate batch of sevadal participate in special occasions during Bhagavan’s birthday, Sports Day, Gramaseva, Aradhana Mahosthavam from twin states of Andhra Pradesh and Telengana . Sevadal also take active role in the cleaning of stadium, drinking water supply and decoration activities.
Out of the billions of people on earth, only a few million knew about Swami. Out of these, only a few believed in HIS divinity and worshiped Him. Even among those who knew and believed in Him, very few had the opportunity to see Him, experience Him and be in His presence. Only a few had the opportunity to serve in Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organization. And only very few had wonderful opportunity to serve in Prashanthi Nilayam, Kaliyuga Vaikunta of Swami.
Prashanthi Nilayam is a divine workshop, spiritual platform given by beloved Bhagawan. Swami says, service is the highest spiritual practice than Japa, Thapa and Yajna. Sevadal are Swamis messengers. No one can plan oneself and participate in PN service, it’s His will. Many brothers and sisters are participating in Prashanthi Nilayam service by Bhagawans grace and invitation only! For transforming self to transform world!
Around 200 sevdal both men and women render service in Super Speciality Hospital & Brindavan Ashram, Bangalore throughout the year. These volunteers are from Karnataka state. Seva opportunities are available for ladies gents and youth.
The “Love Army” or “Sevadal” is a “Love in action” spiritual demonstration model of Swamis teachings “Love All, Serve All”.
For the progress of humanity, work alone is not adequate, but the work should be associated with love, compassion, right conduct, truthfulness and sympathy. Without the above qualities, selfless service cannot be performed. – Baba
You must render service out of spontaneous urge from within, with a heart filled with love. – Baba