From His Own Wallet

[Listen to Asha read this story]

(Told by an Ananda devotee)

Often Swamiji will accept people who are spiritually sincere, but difficult to get along with, giving them a job when no one else in the community will. Usually, contact with Swamiji deepens their attunement and helps smooth out their rough edges.

Aiden (a pseudonym) was one such person Swamiji tried to help in this way, putting him in charge of multi-media presentations. I was one of several volunteers working under Aiden.

One day Aiden asked me to pick up a printing project from town. I paid the bill, assuming I would be reimbursed, a common practice at Ananda. When I asked Aiden for the money, though, he laughed at me. He said it was foolish of me to front it and he had no intention of paying me back.

Though the loss of money hurt me financially, the main offense was the attitude behind it. This sort of breach of trust and friendship is unthinkable at Ananda.

The next day, while working with Swamiji on a project, Aiden’s name came up. I told Swamiji what had happened.

Immediately he asked, “How much money was it?”

“Four hundred dollars,” I said.

Without another word, Swamiji pulled out his checkbook and paid me what I was owed.

Even though Swamiji chose many of the people who worked in that department, he didn’t have much involvement in the money aspect of it. It was his own money he was giving me, which he had very little of at that time. I was stunned by the way Swamiji so quickly assumed responsibility, taking the burden onto himself without question. There was no waffling on his part, just a deep adherence to dharma.

Unfortunately, Aiden didn’t take advantage of the spiritual opportunity of working with Swamiji. He never developed his attunement, but kept to his worldly ways, and soon left Ananda.

No comments:

Post a Comment