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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Social Service Like Seeta

A Social lesson that I learnt recently. The post here is a fabricated description of the truth. The last sentence that you read is derived from the reaction that my friend P gave me after I narrated the idea of this blogpost to him.


When Lakshman went to the forest to search for Ram, he drew around their hut, what is called, the Lakshman Rekha. Seeta was supposed to stay within the Lakshman Rekha for it would always protect her. That is why when Ravan, disguised as a sage, came to the hut asking for alms, Seeta was initially reluctant to cross the Lakshman Rekha.


Rohit goes to the slums near his house every weekend to teach the adult students there. The students are all mostly construction workers or the ones who do petty jobs of plumbing and carpentry. There's obviously no fee involved. Rohit writes on facebook that it gives him unparalleled satisfaction to know that he is doing something for a social cause.

Today is Guru Pournima and his adult students decide to hold dinner for him. When he reaches the place, he is warmly invited for the dinner....

Rohit is now caught in a tight spot. "How can I go there? I mean, would the food be safe?", the thought comes to Rohit's mind.

And he is worried. He cannot help but excuse himself out of the dinner without eating anything.


We want to go down to the lower level of the society and work for its upliftment - but we somehow do not have the courage to go down to that lower level and work for it by staying there.

Social service many of us do, but only few manage to do it like Seeta. It was Seeta who decided to cross the Lakshman rekha to make her donation to the sage.

I do not say that social service like Seeta is not the only way to go about it. What Rohit did is a noble social service indeed.

But the Seeta-ly social service is what made Mahatma Gandhi what he is. He is a person who gave up his lifestyle and adopted a humble man's way of living... and hence, he is Gandhiji...


  1. A very nice correlation, Aditya.

    Many a times, crossing the Lakshman Rekha would actually let us know if what we think as 'social service' is really one or not.

  2. The difference between 'rohit' and an individual called Gandhi is that one goes to uplift those who are seen to be lower, the other to take his community to the next level ...... as far as rohits of the world go to the class as a lower class, this is hardly surprising.....but then not all can be a Karve or Phule or Gandhi and though discriminatory, the rohits of the world play as importanta role, if not more, in society moving up.