During the land donation movement, Vinoba Bhave , who is also known as spiritual successer of Gandhi ji asks a 30 year old enthusiastic Gopal :” Do you take a pledge to dedicate your life for service ? ” I do said Gopal without a blink and today at the age of 80, Gopal kaka with just one extra pair of clothes and almost no possessions works for the poorest of poor in rural India.
When 25 year old Nandan, an engineering student in Mumbai leaves his home, he makes sure he has an extra pair of footwear, which he then distributes to the barefoot in the railway stations. No one in his family knew about his kindness act till recently and he doesn’t accepts donation just footwear.
Every Sunday, instead of taking a day off after a very hectic week as a bank manager, S. Shreedhar goes to Government hospital in Chennai to look for unclaimed dead bodies. He would then personally cremate them with proper rituals and prayer.
These are everyday, invisible people who are doing small act of random kindness to bring together oneness in the world. These are whom we call soul entrepreneurs.
We broadly outlined few characteristics which reflects the spirit of soul entrepreneurship:
* Dharma (Belief): Every Soul entrepreneur deeply knows that his journey is about self exploration and connecting with the oneness of the universal energy. He follows his Swadharma ( His natural act). He knows he is just an instrument. he is follower of truth. He does what he does because he finds selfless joy in it, there’s no other way to express his truth. He lives in this moment.
When Shreedhar was asked, why he does the cremation of strangers, he simply replied ” because every human being deserves a dignified farewell.
*Karma (Action): His actions are effortless because he knows Small is beautiful. He acts from a space of no fear and no desire but complete abundance. Unlike an entrepreneur who works for the top of the pyramid and a social entrepreneur who works for the bottom, he is one with the pyramid. There’s no separate two. The giver is receiver and vice versa.
Nandan never fund raised for his cause, he would buy it all from his own pocket money or use donated footwear. When his story was shared, many people poured to send donations to which Nandan politely declined and requested them to buy and distribute themselves.
* Akarma ( Non Attachment with result) :
Unlike any enterprise, the growth here is not sought vertically but naturally horizontally. There’s no desire to scale or measure the impact of one’s deed because he knows that ripples of each selfless act has the potential to transform every life which is touched by it.
Knowing the magnitude of work Gopal kaka has accomplished in his lifetime, I once asked him, ” Kaka what do you think, how many lives you must have changed ?
He looks at me and with a most beautiful smile, he replies ” I am changed”.
I believe there’s a bit of soul entrepreneur in all of us and to find it we just have to follow our truth through whatever we do.