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Doing Sums for the Teacher
Once a landlord appointed a tutor for his son on a monthly salary of fifteen rupees plus a monthly stipend of another fifteen rupees for the tutor’s maintenance cost. The landlord’s son was very weak in mathematics, so the tutor would give him alot of sums too do by himself. In spite of the pupil’s insisting the tutor to do the sums for him, the tutor would tell him, “If I do the sums for you, then you will never learn the methods. Rather, I would like to demonstrate the basic method of solving the sums, or at least I can assist you when you get confused. But you’ll have to do all your sums for your own practice.” The boy was most inattentive and lazy. He had hardly any interest for learning maths, but he had to engage himself in practising maths with the tutor under pressure from his parents.
One day he was loudly talking to his sidekicks so that his tutor could easily overhear him. “For me my father has engaged a worthless tutor on a monthly salary of fifteen rupees plus an additional fifteen rupees for his food and clothing - in all thirty rupees a month! And look, I am still doing so many sums for him everyday. Really I can’t tolerate this anymore; this strain upon me while spending so much money and still taking the trouble of doing all the sums for him! Why should one pay him any salary when in fact I myself have to do all the sums?”
Many of us maintain a similar concept that we renounce our family life, we sacrifice alot in the service of our spiritual master, some of us collect donations and do alot of multifarious direct and indirect service for the satisfaction of our spiritual master, but what do we gain?
Here we forget that we do such sums for our own benefit alone and by such services, we are ourselves are uplifted, not the spiritual master.
The spiritual master knows the sums very well and it is only for our own well-being that he is getting the sums done by us. The spiritual master is engaging us in different services for our own satisfaction and welfare in the path of devotion. Those who are averse to their own benefit, only consider such services to be meant for the welfare of the spiritual master, for the temple complex, for the Vaishnavas, for the Lord, and thus foolishly take little interest in them.