Sri Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol 8 (1968)
The bandage removed from the eye

DR. MODI has been engaged during the last ten days, at the Prasanthi Nilayam, in the service of the people who were in great distress, since they could not see; service that is really commendable and sacred. The eye is the mainspring of the body so far as contact with outer nature is concerned. The nethra is the suuthra (the eye is the medium) as the saying goes. By this act of service, done selflessly, efficiently and gladly for years, Modi has become a Yogi (sage), much greater than many who claim that title. This is real thapas (austerity), the sacrifice and asceticism that wins God's Grace. He is happy as a result of this ceaseless toil and he makes all those who come to him for relief, happy. He is clear evidence that service is twice blessed - making the giver and the receiver happy. Service tends to destroy egoism; it confers enormous joy. His life is an inspiration for doctors and others, to use their skill for the service of the really deserving. By devoting skill to this end, it is rendered pure; by devoting the hand to the service of the sick, you are purifying it, you are justifying it. Direct the senses towards these ends; they become beneficial instruments. The gathering of these patients, with their bandages removed, and with bright and curious faces, wearing new clothes and new looks is indeed a charming sight. For, it is Anandha (bliss) that lends charm to the personality. Now that you have recovered eye sight, after the operation, use it for good purposes. You can move about now without the help of another; so, that person is released for useful work, in the home or fields. You can see and appreciate flowers, children, stars, the moon and many other things that will remind you of the Beauty of the Lord. You may see others happy, prosperous, joyful, content; do not develop envy at their happiness! If you kill your peace by that envy, why be glad that you got your eyes? Look upon all with friendly eyes, joyful eyes. Do not try to discover faults in others and disturb their contentment and joy and lose your own.
Help others to repay the service that you received
This garland of flowers is so beautiful, because various hues and types of petals and greens have gone into its making. So, too, this Eye Operation Camp became the great success it is due to the medical assistants, nurses and compounders on one side, and the men and women volunteers, the kinsmen and the cooks on the other, with Dr. Modi, blessed by Me, in the centre. Every one carried out his or her allotted task with great enthusiasm. The volunteers realised that this was a unique chance, to be of help to really deserving patients at a very critical period of their lives. This is Narayana seva, that is to say, service of God, not service of Man. You too must help others, so that you may repay the service that you received. Do not look on, when you find some one in pain or grief. As far as possible, relieve the pain, console the grief-stricken. A man who works for wages, calculates the reward at so much per hour, receives his wages and quits. But, when one works as part of his worship, glad that he is given the chance to serve as long and as gladly as he can, he derives maximum Anandha. Dr. Modi also was happiest here, as he declared just now, for Prasanthi Nilayam has the atmosphere of work done as worship, to win the Grace of the Lord. The four hundred and fifty patients who attended the camp were full of joy, because their every want was fullfilled with sincere enthusiasm and forethought by the residents and the volunteers, inspired by My love.
Learn to have single-pointed concentration
It is considered auspicious when a new born baby casts its first glance on its mother's face. How lucky you all are that you were able to look upon Me as soon as the bandage was removed from your eyes by Dr. Modi. and his assistants! Suurdhas sang, "Why should I bewail my lot? Have all those who have eyes seen you? They are wasting their visual faculty on flippant fouling sights. But, though blind, I have succeeded in getting and retaining the vision of the Lord." I advise you, when you go home, to have the picture (now given to you) on the wall of your residence and bow before it, at least once in the morning and once in the evening; it will remind you of the ten days you spent here, the bhajan (devotional songs) you heard while you were in bed recovering from the operation, the tender hands that plaited your hair, washed your faces and fed you; I feel as if you are all leaving your parental home, to the places where your avocations call you. You are children of Prasanthi Nilayam, belonging to this place, even before you came and even after you leave.
You must have observed how Dr. Modi was conducting so many operations so quickly and so successfully; it is the result of concentration, of single-pointed attention on the work on hand. Learn to have ekagratha (single-pointedness). Through that concentration, it is possible to open the inner eye also, clear and complete, so that man may visualise God. By taking to repeating the Name of God and picturing in the mind the glory of God who has that Name, as well as a thousand others, slowly the cataract of the inner eye will disappear and, man can see the God who is in his innermost heart, installed in the altar therein. Resolve now to enter upon this sadhana (spiritual practise) from this moment onwards.
Gain internal peace, internal joy; that can be done only when you act without an eye on the gain. The act must be its own reward; or rather, the act must be according to the prompting of the God within, so that its consequence is left to Him. Practise this attitude consistently and you will find great Peace welling within you and around you.
– Sri Sathya Sai Baba
Selected Excerpts From This Discourse