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Royal Reception

Saturday March 5 2005 07:30 IST

By Karmayogi

Royal reception is for royalty. The royal reception I talk of is not for royalty or for those who are close the seats of power or for those menials in the royal palace, but for one who is far removed from the ordinary dignities of life.

In the campus, brilliant students attract attention. Orators, athletes, tall handsome boys, well-dressed gents are objects of attention, not the unassuming, timid, homesick boy. In a wealthy house, dignity is for the head of the family and respect moves down in grades to the other members of his family. In the absence of wealth, life brings up the rear, which is ordinary, dull, insipid, etc.

In such an atmosphere, servants such as drivers or domestics will not even desire to disclose where they are working. Academic eminence, cultural pre-eminence, long-standing high traditional values of the family, piety and devotion do not carry the status that money or political power does. People who are part of such families or who are on the fringes of it are non-descript, non-entities to the world outside.

There was one such domestic servant. She was not the first there. There had been many in that position, maybe half a dozen so far. They were domestics who did the chores. They were not touched by the Spirit of the place. To most of us social beings, the Spirit of this place or any such place is non-existent. This servant, for whatever reason, felt there was an atmosphere and tried to relate to it. She observed those who came close to it and saw how their faces beamed and life flowered. She became a silent beneficiary. When someone accepted to do a task of five years in one year, this servant joined the spirit of that task, worked silently and saw it done in less than two months.

Someone used to a profit of five lakhs in a trade suddenly received 168 lakhs in the morning and for some mysterious reason lost it in the evening. She set to work without the beneficiary knowing and it was restored at half value the next morning.

Her faith grew, and along with that her accomplishments too. They were not without unwanted accompaniments. She noticed it and began to work seriously to remove them. She was rewarded with a large success, though not complete. At this time, she received an invitation to another place connected with her work place, the first such invitation in her long life. She reached there exhausted but saw overwhelming attention waiting for her. It was no mere attention, it was affection. Her exhaustion left her. From hour to hour she was surrounded by interested enquiries, kind solicitude, plenty of presents, and tours of interest.

It was inconceivable that people could wait for her, or wait upon her. She felt smothered by the intensity of genuine kindness. She felt it was a Royal Reception to her. She does not know fully that it was a reception to her inner faith in the Spirit of the place.

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