Jindal Awards at Delhi
(Sri Sri was invited as the chief guest, and to award the prestigeous Sitaram Jindal Awards 2012. The Jindal Awards is intended to acknowledge outstanding service for Indian citizens, with a motto of social upliftment. Sri Sri awarded the prize to Anna Hazare who was one of the 27 recipients of the prestigious award. Sri Sri also spoke to the congregation and said that, righteousness gives you a comfort that nothing else can.)
Om Shanti my dear ones who are here to receive the award; on my other hand my dear ones who are giving the award, and the many eyes and ears who have come to witness this.
A budding youth politician came to me in Chennai and he asked me a question, “Guruji, what is the point of being good? What is the use of being good? We see all those who are doing corrupt practices and who are ruthless, are happy. They are moving in their life very well. Why should I be good? Please tell me.”
He said, “See, for example Ravana. He enjoyed all his life and when he died, he attained Moksha. Duryodhana, he ruled the whole kingdom. He ruled India all his life and when he died, he also went to heaven before Yudhisthira. So what is the point of being good? Why you say we should be good?”
This is a big challenging question for anybody - any historian or philosopher. Why should one be good?
I told him, “Look, forget about Duryodhana and Ravana. Have you done something wrong?”
He said, "Yes, Guruji."
“So when you did something wrong, that day could you sleep? Did you enjoy your food?”
“Guruji how can I do that? When I do something wrong, I cannot sleep. I go drink and then get myself drowned in unconsciousness.”
“See, that is what it is. When you do something wrong, you cannot have peace of mind. You cannot sleep. You cannot enjoy the things that life has provided you. So it’s not that being good will give you some reward sometime in the future, it rewards you right now.”
You know, the general tendency in people is who will recognize us for being good, and in these situations I feel awards like what Sitaram Jindal Foundation has instituted will reinstate the confidence in people to walk the right path, to be honest and to be sincere. Yes, you will be recognized.
There is a comfort that the dharma or righteousness gives you which nothing else can give you. The inner comfort that you get, the peaceful sleep that you get, the food that you can enjoy, the simple things that you can enjoy in life is possible when there is honesty.
You know, corruption begins where the sense of belongingness ends. Till today, nobody had done corrupt practices with those whom they considered their own. Where corruption begins is exactly where the sense of belongingness ends. And spirituality is not sitting in a corner and doing some practice. It is expanding the sense of belongingness. Feeling that everybody is a part of me and I am part of everybody. And here we have luminaries who have lived such a life. Anna Hazareji, Santosh Hegdeji, our Virender Hegdeji of Dharmasthala, and our most dear President, Shri Abdul Kalamji – they have lived their life with that example and the foundation is so privileged to give them these awards. I am so happy to be part of this. These are the stars. In one string, we got real luminaries of this country who have inspired the youth and who will remain a guiding light for centuries to come.
There are many others here, of course, Tarun Tejpalji and fifteen other wonderful beings. They have done this great work not for the sake of an award or to impress anybody. They have done it because they cannot but do it. It is in their nature. It is in their DNA and that is authentic.
The authenticity of any service is because it is your nature. You can’t but do it. And inside every human being, there is this instinct. Every person has an element of service in him. This attitude to serve is there but it has got lost somewhere. We have to bring it out. Such award functions help in bringing out the element of service. The humanity and innocence in us comes out as one individual follows another.
There are many principles but people don’t follow principles, they follow people. And such deserving people have gathered here that it is actually an honor for us to honor you. It is a very joyful atmosphere here.
The youth of today should learn from the great people present here. Our youth, our country should follow the path of these great people, who are a ray of hope for our country.
The effort of Sitaramji to bring all these people together on one platform is praiseworthy. You not only cure the body but also the soul. Jindals are known for this.
So with these few words, I congratulate the foundation and also thank all the recipients of the awards for having agreed to accept the award and have come here.
May God bless you all!