When we were very young our mother used to narrate us a tale of Guru Nanak Dev Ji (the first Guru of Sikhs). Guru’s father Shri Kalu Mehta on seeing his son come up of his age, decided to give him lesson in business and trading. He gave him Rs 20 (which was a good amount those days in 15th century) and told him to go to nearby town and carry out beneficial and ethical trade (Sacha Sauda). Guru along with his companions moved towards the town, en route, he saw a group of hungry people who had not eaten for days. Guru thought why not feed them, what could be a True Trade than this and spent the entire money on providing them meals. His father was very angry with him for this kind of trade but the Guru replied, “What could be a better bargain than feeding the hungry people.”
Even today we have such good Samaritans in our society who go out of their way to help the needy person without expecting anything in reward. They do not even mention or advertise their efforts in helping the society. Our media always picks up sensational news of rapes, murders and other impact topics but has never paid any heed to airing such people’s effort which is noble and would induce good feelings and character in the society.
I am reminded of a tale that my daughter told me a long time back when she was studying in Kendriya Vidyalaya No2, New Delhi in 1993. Seeing the sensational items that are projected on the TV and media, I felt that I must mention the efforts of such unknown and unsung heroes of the society. There was a lady teacher in her school whose husband was also a teacher in a nearby school. They had no issues of their own. They hardly had any material possessions and did not even possess a scooter. However, the couple was very happy and contented. They used to live in the staff quarters provided by the school. On every sunday, the lady would cook breakfast for 10 children and her husband would cycle up to the nearby poor people’s colony and invite 10 poor kids for breakfast. the couple would feed them with their own hands and feel happy. This was their weekly ritual. This couple would spare and save money out of their meagre salary to buy some cheap clothes which were distributed to the slum kids on any festival like Diwali, Eid etc. When a poor student could not afford a good book or was in need of something the teacher couple always helped them. In today’s era when the teacher do not teach kids properly in the school and instead goad them to come to their residences for personal paid tuition, the above mentioned couple conducted regular extra coaching for the weak student in their house, free of cost. Once my daughter asked the lady teacher as to why they do it, her answer was, “We have no kids of our own and therefore every poor /needy child is our own child and above all we get peace of mind and happiness.”
I am sure there would be many more such people in the society that I do not know of. God bless such unknown and unsung pillars of the society, they are indeed indulging in “Sacha Sauda” (सचा सौदा ), “The True Trade.”