Perinjery narrates an incident that led him to reflect on how #religion contributed to the #oneness of humanity by transcending differences especially when it comes to serving those in need. #unityindiversity #sundayoneday
Four of us friends went for trekking to an arid area with few hills. The region was almost uninhabited. The hills were without any vegetation, with few rocks and mostly soil. Such hills are difficult to climb as they are slippery. Hence we decided to keep our back packs as light as possible with small water bottle and few snack packets. We started in the morning and felt very happy when climbed the 3rd hill. It was already noon and we were very tired, thirsty and hungry. We had already finished our snacks and water. We looked around and could not find any signs of houses or other human beings.
We took our binoculars and saw a saffron flag flying at a distance which we judged to be 3-4 km away. It was a temple. We hurriedly climbed down and walked fast towards the temple with whatever energy we had. We only expected to get some water there and some place to rest. When we reached there it was 1230 pm.
To our joy we saw few temple staff inviting us for the free lunch served on leaf plates with mats laid on the floor to sit. They directed to us to the wash area, where water was a kept in a tub and one person poured a mugful into our hands to wash our hands and face. That itself freshened us. Then we sat down on the mat and were served a meal with a sweet which we ate hungrily. We felt so filled both with food and gratitude. However, only we four of us were having the food. After the food we spoke to the main caretaker and he told us that they served free food every day at 1 pm. Since they saw our state they served us immediately and that is why we did not have any more company. We touched his feet, got his blessings, prayed in front of the deity and put a generous amount into the donation box. He thanked us and said that with such donations they are able to run the temple and serve the people.
That day we learned how religion brought discipline and a sense of humanity in a community where people would help others in the name of the almighty.
[Image Source – Sastha Prakash]