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Leadership that stays awake to service the mankind.

In a small village lived two brothers, who were farmers. They cultivated their land and made a living. Also they had cows, bullocks, buffaloes etc. and they lovingly took care of them. The milk which the cows and buffaloes provided was very nutritious and was well suited for them well as their families. Once it so happened that two buffaloes, belonging one each to each brother were simultaneously pregnant. The time of delivering the calves was fast approaching. And when the moment came, both of them kept awake. As they did so, the evening slowly transited into night. Due to exhaustion, one of the brothers felt drowsy and went to sleep. At that very moment both the buffaloes gave birth to calves. The brother who was awake, saw that his buffalo had delivered a bull calf, while his brother's buffalo had delivered a heifer. Noticing that his brother was asleep, he quickly interchanged the calves. The noise woke up his brother who asked, 'What happened? So he joyously told his brother, "Have a look, the one who is awake has received a heifer, while the one who was sleeping has received a bull calf. The other brother was left scratching his head.

Such is life. In fact, to awaken is life. He who wakes up gets everything. A couplet in a poem advises...

Uth Jaag Musafir Bhor Bhai, ab ran Kahan Jo Sowat Hai

Jo sowat hai vo khovat hai,

Jo jagat hai, so payat hai..


Wake up..the Sun has risen and the night is over.

The one who wakes up early wins,

And the one who rises late loses.

There are many bravehearts in the world who sleep for very few hours and spend most of their day working. They continuously work hard and always aim high with an underlying desire to give something back to society.

One such individual is Jake Dorshe, the founder of Twitter and the CEO of a company called Square. He spends eight to ten hours a day working on Twitter and another eight to ten hours working on Square. So, in effect, he sleeps only for four to five hours a day. And when he is travelling, he sleeps even less. But he has adapted himself to sleeping less and keeping awake for more hours during the day. Dominic Orr is the president and CEO of Aruba Networks. He also sleeps for only four hours a day. When he feels the need, he takes a short vacation of a week. Eminent bypass surgeon Dr Subramanian, who is attached to the prestigious Lennoxhill Hospital in New York, and who performed the bypass operation on Pramukh Swami Maharaj, sleeps for only three hours a day. When he is not performing surgery, he spends his time in social service. He considers sleep as a waste of time. There are numerous such individuals who want to do something for the society. Such concerned individuals even go to the extent of minimising their comforts.

We have witnessed innumerable instances of Pramukh Swami Maharaj where he kept constantly awake and worked for public welfare. In the year 1990, Swamiji had embarked on a pilgrimage abroad. At that time, Gujarat was going through a very severe drought. Without water, humans along with all animal and avian life were facing a grave situation. Everyone was extremely worried for themselves and their loved ones. The severe heat was taking its toll on all kinds of sentient life. The saints, devotees and people from other communities and faith used to continuously write to Swamiji about the kind of situation that they are facing without water in the country. In the letters, they would also request Swamiji to pray that it rains. They would also regularly call swamiji and inform him about the plight of the people.

Swamiji's tender and compassionate heart would be deeply moved after reading and hearing about the extreme conditions. Tears would well up in his eyes. As per his instructions, the BAPS sanstha was providing aid as much as possible, but since the grief of the people and every other life had become unbearable for Swamiji, he would keep awake at night and pray. In one of his letters, he wrote to a person that it is natural that letters of concern are coming in from every place and people requesting to pray for rains. Also since half the month of Ashad (the prime month of the monsoon season) has passed by without a drop of rain, it is only natural that everyone would be deeply worried. But we should live as per the wishes of Shriji Maharaj. Since the last two days, I have been waking up at night and praying for rains...Swamiji would never talk about himself in letter or speech. The moment he realized he had written something about himself he deleted all of it and then simply wrote that at night I spend an hour praying at Aksharderi..

Swamiji would never talk about himself. But such was his nature that he would keep awake at night. On one occasion, even at midnight, he called for a report on how the organization's earthquake relief work was being carried out. When the whole world would be in a deep slumber, unbeknownst to anyone, he used to keep awake at night and pray for the drought victims. Such was Pramukh Swami Maharaj.

An extraordinary event occurred in the year 1968. Yogiji Maharaj, Swamiji and a few other saints were going to Ayodhya from Banaras. Yogiji Maharaj, Swamiji and Sant Swami were sitting in Ramnikbhai Jayantibhai Gandhi's car who lived in Banaras. Ramnikbhai himself was driving the car. The vehicle was crossing the river Gomati near the town of Jaunpur. Ten to fifteen saints were following behind in a bus. Swamiji was sitting in the front seat next to the driver. After sometimes Ramnikbhai started feeling drowsy and as his eyes shut slightly, his grip loosened from the steering wheel. The car started to weer away from the road. Swamiji was alert to the situation and immediately put his hand on the steering wheel and steered the car back on the road safely. Everyone was momentarily out of breath. But Swamiji was awake and so everyone was safe. Such was the Pramukh Swami Maharaj.

Thanks Giving

This article is written and submitted to The E Today by Sadhu Amrutvadandas. We thank swamiji for his research and analysis and hope to see the awareness about life and peace being spread ahead to larger mass of our citizens.

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