Children what do you want to be?

A beggar or giver, the great– the choice is yours.

Guru Nanak Dev ji was a great saint. Millions of people worship him world over even today, as an incarnation of God. One of his endless great qualities was that he always drew happiness from ‘giving’- giving whatever he had, to others.

Once his father, Kalu Mahta, gave him Rs. 20/- to start a business. In those times Rs. 20/- used to be a substantial amount. Guru Nanak Dev Ji set out to the city of Lahore to find some business opportunity to invest the money in. Bhai Balaji was sent along to assist him.

On the way, while crossing a forest, they came across a group of saints. “Who would provide food to these saints deep with in the forest, with no dwellings around?” Guru Nanak Dev ji’s kind heart was moved. He sent Bhai Balaji to the nearest village to bring necessary groceries for the saints. Food was prepared and served. The saints were pleased. However, all of the twenty rupees had been spent.

Bhai Balaji was a little worried. With all the money spent, what happens to the business? Guru Nanak Dev ji, was however, happy. “No bargain could have been better”, he told Bhai Bala. “God resides in all beings. By feeding these noble saints we have only struck a business deal-with God. Trust me, this is a deal in which there can never be a loss– but only gain is sure to come.”

Guru Nanak Dev ji returned, seemingly empty handed. But he had been transacting. His transactions were with no one but the God himself. He revealed himself as the great one – bestowing peace and happiness upon people all over the world, so much so that he became manifestation of God himself. Even today the world sings his praises.

Kalu Mehta , his father was annoyed and angry. For him, Guru Nanak Dev ji had wasted Rs. 20/-. But Nanak ji had no doubts- for him it was a lucrative bargain, made fearlessly and truthfully.

Children, it is these trivialities (small things), which transform an ordinary person to a great one. Children love toys, colourful clothes and sweets etc.; but have you ever thought of sharing your toys with children less fortunate than you? Have you ever given, happily, any of your good T-shirt or trousers etc. to some child who could not afford to buy clothes? Do you feel happy in sharing your, food, sweets, fruit etc. with others around you?

Some children would do anything, even quarrel with their parents or siblings, to get what they want. They cannot even think of sharing their possessions with others. However on the other hand, there are children who do not hesitate to give away their things, if someone asks for them. However best of the lot are those children who derive pleasure from giving away, or sharing their things with others on their own, without being requested to do so. They are always on a lookout for the needy, the poor, the less fortunate ones who need something – may be a book, pen , pencil note book etc.-but cannot afford it. These noble children are capable of achieving greatness

Here is story of Ashish, a child, a darling of his parents. He wanted to have a bike as a birthday gift, but being a bit short of money, his parents were not inclined to buy a bike. However, he did not relent. “I am not asking for something too big. Why can’t I get even a bike? Just imagine what fun it will be to ride a bike with my friends. In fact it is a necessity. How easy it will be for me to move about.”

Giving in to his stubborn insistence, it was decided to buy a bike. Ashish was thrilled, as he and his father started for the bike-showroom, on a scooter. Reaching the main road of the town they found that it had been blocked for traffic as some procession was passing through the area. To save time, they took an alternate route, which passed through the back street inhabited mostly by extremely poor people living in small huts or battered houses.

As they drove through, Ashish looked around. Dilapidated houses, flies and mosquitos all around, people sitting outside, some sick people even lying on cots, in the street itself! Some people were even cooking their meals out in the open. Perhaps they did not enough space in their shacks. May be they did not have even a shack to live in. What a pathetic picture it was.

Moving a little ahead, he saw a long queue of people, both children and grown ups. Looking on with curiosity, he noticed that the queue was for receiving daal-rotiand ladoos, which were being distributed by some kind hearted people there. “Why are they queuing up for something as simple and tasteless as daal-roti?” he asked his father.

“They do not have enough to eat my dear. They cannot even afford two meals a day, so poor are they. So, some generous people keep distributing food and clothes etc. among them”, said his father. “For them receiving a meal of daal-roti is a matter of delight.”

Ashish was somewhat moved. “Papa, please stop here. I do not want to buy a bike anymore. We will spend the money, kept for my gift, for serving langar to the needy. A bike can not give me as much happiness as the smiles on the faces of these people will.”

His father was happy and this time too eager to fulfill his wish. Some days later, Ashish also received a gift–A Motorbike- from his father.

Feeding others give happiness thousands times more than feeding one’s own self. The joy of gifting to the needy is thousands times more than the joy of accumulating toys, clothes etc. however this joy comes to only those with a large heart, not to the ordinary beings, – busy all through their lives, enjoying the ordinary things like food, clothes play etc., not much different from animals.

Children, after reading this story please think. Think of the things that you have, which could be gifted, distributed to the needy; it could be a shirt , a toy, sweets, pen, pencil, book, note book, may be some art, some skill, some knowledge, and much more- thinks what can you share with the needy.