Sometimes His creations too are invisible, isn’t?
Today morning was totally different from my regular morning hours. Last night I decided to sleep early and wake up earlier than usual to avoid unnecessary stress while I got ready to office. I was all set to leave home half an hour ahead of my scheduled departure time. That half an hour helped me understand so many wonderful things about life and gave me the time to notice what I had missed all these days. Most of us, in our busy journey to reach our destination, forget to notice important sign boards and lovely landscapes. Once we reach there, another destination is set and we continue our never-ending journey, still failing to notice and appreciate what should not be ignored.
As I was leisurely sitting on my sofa, watching TV, I noticed my maid who was quietly cleaning my home. I saw her face and I could read so much of pain in her eyes. She has been working at our home for a year now and I had never given any time to observe her as another human being around. I asked her, “Chinnamma, are you not well or something?” Without stopping the work even for a second she replied, “No sir, I am fine”. In the rat race of life, I have ignored the presence and contribution of this wonderful woman who takes care of my home better than me. Immaterial of the meager salary that I pay, I have to be so thankful to her for maintaining my home with so much dedication. Gratitude was flowing in me for this woman about whom I knew nothing else but her name.
I came out of my home and was about to leave my apartment, when I heard someone greeting me, “Namaste sahib”. I turned around to notice the building’s watchman; Bahadur, who was in his late 60s. At the age where one must live like a king, taking complete rest and enjoying life, here was a man still earning for his family, waking up all night and doing odd jobs for few more rupees. Bahadur was trying to smile hard despite his sleepless night and worn out body. He was in tattered clothes and so was his status only because he was a watchman who was paid for his job. I thought for a moment, ‘If not for this man waking up all night, would the others in this building be able to sleep peacefully? Does anybody thank him for that?’
I walked on the street towards my bus stop. I noticed an old lady sweeping the streets. People who were crossing her were cursing her for the dust that rose as she was doing her job. She had to receive such signs of disgust everyday but totally unaffected by these, she kept focus on what she was doing. The challenge of doing some job is when nobody appreciates you for it and still you have to do it. I wondered how the streets would look if not for these people who clean up all the dirt others contribute to the society. In fact, this is the best service anybody can offer. How many of us think about these people and respect them for what they are?
How can we recognize God even if He is visible, when we so easily ignore people who are actually visible?
I boarded the bus to my office and in a few minutes the bus took a sudden dangerous twist and turn. The bus driver just managed to avoid an accident that was a result of a careless two-wheeler driver. He was in utter tension for few minutes and then came back to normalcy continuing his goal to safely transport over 50 lives. This man was in his mid 40s and he too must be having his problems, however, he could not lose focus for a minute that would put so many lives in danger. He must be tired driving this huge vehicle all his life in such thankless, maddening traffic. Without drivers like him, how will people commute to their work places? These are the people who provide us the mobility and freedom to do so many things in life. I have never taken time earlier in life to thank people in such professions. What self centeredness!
‘If not for this man waking up all night, would the others in this building be able to sleep peacefully? Does anybody thank him for that?’
The day was filled with such experiences. I consciously decided to notice, thank and respect all those people who were invisible to me till then, but have made significant contribution in my life so far. I noticed the ever-smiling receptionist in my office, the sincere security guard at the gate, the lift operators, those who cleaned the entire office including the wash rooms, the cooks in the pantry, those who served food, those who cleaned our left-over, the postman, the plumber… the list went on and on! I was drowning in gratitude for I realized that there are so many people around me, who are part of my life, keep things ready for me, even when I do not know anybody and they gain nothing out of this service, except their salary.
This list is just a brief one based on the people whom I see on a day-to-day basis. If we sit back and observe, there are actually millions of people who are part of our life, without whom we cannot even start our day. Do we know who built our home, who prepared those bricks, who manufactured our furniture? Do we know how many have worked on the fields to make the food reach our dining table? Do we know how many people’s effort was involved in producing the clothes we wear or the car we drive? Do we know how much of sweat has gone in to lay the roads we travel or the electricity that brightens our home? Do we ever take a few minutes in day to thank all those millions of lives which made every day of our life possible? How egoistic of us to not acknowledge the presence of so many lives and the way we live life taking everything for granted!
We have so much gratitude for God, who is invisible to us and yet we are sure that all help comes from Him. Why cannot we extend at least a bare minimum gratitude to these people who are so much visible and help us regularly in our day-to -day life? The best way to respect an individual is to acknowledge the presence and the only way to show disrespect is to ignore someone even after we have benefited much from that person. We can evolve as spiritual people only if we know to express gratitude to even the smaller blessings of life.
We are all waiting for big miracles to happen and our priorities of people lies in how much benefit we get out of them. Are we not selfish to keep praying to God that someday we must meet Him? Why don’t we start experiencing God even while he is tangibly invisible? How can we recognize God even if He is visible, when we so easily ignore people who are actually visible? We invest so much time to search within and search in all holy places to experience God. We have so much love towards the invisible God! But think again, is only God invisible? Sometimes His creations too are invisible to our eyes, isn’t?