Serving at the Retreat
I once asked my mom, “Don't you get tired working for all of us day in and day out, and that too, without seeking anything in return?” She just smiled and said, “I like it.” I nodded, appreciated and understood, but never comprehended it completely till I went to the Moved By Love Retreat as a volunteer.
I had been to the retreat earlier. If I have to describe it in words, it is difficult; but the closest will be 'a home away from home'. 'The treat', I would like to keep 're'turning to - and after my first visit as a participant, I really wished for going back, as a volunteer. Here, I must express my gratitude to the person/s who bestowed upon me this opportunity. I remember, as a participant, I had received so much love and understanding from all, including the volunteers, that I wanted to experience giving the same, with so much humility and kindness.
The three days passed by, in a blink...leaving memories of a lifetime. With participants from 5 different countries and with diverse backgrounds, it was really 'a salad bowl', but merging in the 'melting pot' of 'Moved by love' (MBL). Along with other inspiring volunteers, I was ably guided by generous souls from MBL and ESI, Sughad (where the retreat took place). Add to that, the gracious participants, who themselves volunteered for many works, I found, I have nothing much to do, except soak in the air of bliss.
Whatever little I did as a volunteer, reinforced my belief that 'giving is a joy unparalleled'. While receiving feels good, giving, which looks like its mirror image (try it in the mirror), feels good raised to infinity. I felt, as if I am on auto-pilot. I didn't do anything, it just happened. I was just going through the motions. I felt, as if it was my nature - as if I was born to do just that - as if some greater force was manifesting and making it happen. Whatever you may call that greater force, 'God' or something else, but 'giving' is one guaranteed way you can experience it.
As I write, I vaguely remember what I did, but I vividly remember the way I felt – 'effortless joy'. Just like, I am feeling now. Holding the pen, as it writes itself.
Somebody asked me in the retreat, about the difference I felt as a participant and as a volunteer. I do recall replying, that as a participant, I felt like a kid (sometimes spoiled...with so much love) and as a volunteer, I felt like a parent...and more like my mom.
While I have helped people in different ways, even served before, this was one 'heaven' of an experience. One after which, I understood in its totality, what mom said many years back, about why she never gets tired. Now, I can say, “I know, how it feels mom - and I like it too.”