By Karuna Beaver, SVA Board Member
You may have been an active volunteer throughout your life. You’re a yogi, a good person, helping others. You’ve volunteered for schools, churches, community organizations, giving of your time and giving of yourself. You do good, you feel good.
But until I began doing seva for the Ashram and for my Guru, I didn’t fully appreciate the Divine nature of volunteering. I didn’t realize that seva was a spiritual practice because I didn’t fully understand the reciprocal nature of the relationship. I didn’t fully understand the source of the support that opened the door inside, Grace. I receive support. I give support. I am participating in a reciprocal relationship.
Where is the source of Grace? It is the Guru, and lineage from which she teaches. When the Grace of this lineage begins to permeate your life and shine its light into every corner, you are inspired to give back to its source. You begin to understand that the source of the Grace that has opened the door to your own Self is the Guru.
When you really identify the source from which it’s all coming, it works even better. A Guru’s life story revolves around their sadhana, or spiritual path. Just as Muktananda did before her, Swami Nirmalananda has invested her body, heart, wallet and intellect so that you can do as little or as much as you want. You can feel this support in your own practices. It’s the result of Swami Nirmalananda’s own deep and profound study and practice. She is the originator of the Svaroopa® Sciences, and yet will tell you that everything she received came from her Guru, Swami Muktananda.
I still feel good about the seva I do for my Guru. But more importantly, I realize that I don’t do seva to feel good. I offer seva to be in relationship with my Guru, the source of Grace. I offer seva as part of my own sadhana. When I let go of my focus on the results of my seva, I feel the Grace, the source of my support.
Many of the sevites who made calls to Svaroopis in our first-ever phone-a-thon feel the same way. Having called many Svaroopis as part of our Support = Release fundraiser, Priya (Lori) Kenney says, “I was so grateful for this Divine seva! It made me grateful to be ‘stuck in’ the path. That is a term used in soccer to mean you are fully engaged and really in and on your game, and it seems appropriate here, too. This seva helped me to appreciate my full commitment to this spiritual path. So grateful to our Guru!”
Sattva (Susan) Daniels says this seva “inspired me to share my story as to why I donate monthly. First, I feel it is important to support the organization that supports me. I give what I can now with the hope that I’ll be able to give more both through seva and monetary means later. As I tell my family when they ask me why I keep teaching and keep supporting the Ashram, I get way more than I give monetarily and time-wise! Because I believe in Swamiji, I support the core organization that brings us Svaroopa® Vidya.”
The many Svaroopa® Sciences practices offer you support that releases you from your small sense of self and propels you to experience your Divine essence. How will you support the source? Your financial support is crucial to the Ashram’s ongoing offerings, as are your practices, including seva. Please do what you can this spring to support the source that makes your release possible. Support our Svaroopa® Vidya Ashram by clicking Donate, or call 610.644.7555, weekdays from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm (Eastern Time). Support really does equal release.