SERVICE AS OUR DHARMA

Excerpt From Relationships That Work: The Power Of Conscious Living
– By David B. Wolf

To enrich understanding of our innate spiritual qualities, the principle of dharma is very helpful. Dharma refers to “that which cannot be separated from a thing.” Fire, for example, can be used for different purposes, such as cooking. Cooking however is not the dharma of fire, because fire can exist without cooking. Heat is the dharma of fire. Heat is an intrinsic, inseparable quality of fire.

From observation we can understand that our dharma is to serve. As sugar cannot avoid being sweet, so we too cannot avoid serving. It is our constitutional nature. Where there is a human being, there is service. We may direct our propensity to service in different directions; perhaps we serve our nation, family or company, our belly, an ideology or our species. The way in which

we manage our propensity to serve will greatly influence our experiences of life, and of ourselves.

If our inherent tendency to serve is applied only toward bodily functions, the spiritual self is left empty. Being spiritual, our nature is spiritual service. Spiritual service means that our endeavors enhance the spiritual lives of ourselves and others. One important principle of personal growth is to be a source for the spiritual development of others. Service is the natural activity that evokes the joy of the soul.

For our service to be complete and satisfying, it needs to address the spirit—the driver of the car. Spiritual growth is not an exercise in self-absorption; it involves determined dedication to the highest aspirations of others. We can think of our spiritual core as the root of the tree of our being. Just as watering or serving the root automatically nourishes all parts of the tree, attending to our spirit nurtures each dimension of our selves—including the physical, intellectual, emotional and social. Truly being of service to others means relating to them as essentially spiritual in nature.

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