If you are situated in the identity as ‘servant’, then when you sing well, you are happy because you served well, and when you lose your voice, you can still serve in other ways. On the other hand when my identity is based on being the enjoyer, I seek to exploit and tend to get selfish. Conflicts and anxieties are natural by-products of a self-centred life.
The more we cultivate an attitude to serve, the more we rise beyond the painful dualities of this world. Of course, you don’t get to see much in the news about ‘servants’; the media is abuzz with exciting stories of successful enjoyers. Ironically, even those who give billions away in charity are portrayed as enjoyers; there’s glamour of being the lord and great in everything we do. Paradoxically it’s in being small and servant that we actually feel fulfilled and closer to our real identity of being the pure soul.
Howard Zinn was against Fascism and therefore joined the US Air force and dropped bombs and fought wars. Later driven by his conscience, he researched and was appalled to discover how many innocent civilians had been killed by his following the order of his superiors. He investigated more and to his horror discovered that his military officials were motivated more by their own career growth than legitimate military objectives. His life changed dramatically thereafter; he became a crusader of peace. As a social activist and historian, he helped the world see wars and human rights differently. He championed the cause of service for which he won many awards; his impressive words remind us the power of simple acts of service: “Small acts when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.”
Therefore let’s take the simple first step to think beyond our own minds; let’s serve, and it doesn’t have to be immense and impressive to be deeply significant and to make a difference to this world.