In the past 10 years of my life in the Art of living organization I have observed that the Life of an Art of living volunteer mostly goes through a few stages described below:
1st Stage is what I call as the ENTHUSIASM (or New born Baby ) stage- This person has just experienced Kriya and completed the course and feels all elevated and High to go and share his experience with everyone. He feels like new born baby, ready to transform the world with his knowledge. His AOL teachers are like God for him and the volunteer’s are like angels. He wants to be like them.
2nd Stage is the LEARNING stage- He shortly realizes that there is more to learn than he thinks because his/hers enthusiasm is not being taken very enthusiastically by people of his world. So he becomes a perfect student. Ready to listen and do what his mentors want to teach.
3rd Stage is called the GRACE stage- This is the Best stage when the volunteer experiences Guru’s Grace flow through him. He is in a constant state of wonder about how nice he feels while doing seva . When people actually listen to him with open ears and words which he has no clue of come out of his mouth. He feels on cloud nine when he sees a person he registered sitting on a course and thanking him for the same. This feeling keeps growing as others start complimenting him and look up to him like a hero.
There are 2 kinds of people in the Art of living
1st Those who have gone through the 3rd stage
2nd Those who haven’t
For the 2nd kinds I have an advice, You are missing the most elevating experience of life. So quickly become the 1st kind.
4th Stage is called the SVS (Senior Volunteer syndrome) stage- At this stage suddenly the “New Star” starts hallucinating. He in his own mind has imagined a position for himself and thinks himself superior now . He /she feels like a King or a lion/Lioness. You will generally hear such sentences from a SVS patient
‘ You know, when I give intro talks everyone listens”
“It’s a small talk ask a new volunteer to give it, I just give BIG talks”
“When I sing in satsangs people go so deep”
“In my last talk every single person registered, my talks are the best”
“You know, Bawa and Dinesh know me by my name”
“You know Guruji personally told me to sit on a TTC”
“For me a TTC is just a formality, I am ready to teach”
They have an air of authority around them and whenever they find a Bakra they grab their change to exhibit there seniority.
This stage can last Really Really long in one’s career in the Art of Living.
I think at this stage Master is having fun watching the show as he lets it continue for as long as he wants or until the 5th stage comes.
5th and the final stage is the Great Fall – One day you open your eyes to find that now you are in Ethiopia (A place where your existence means nothing more than a dust particle). No one knows you or your qualities here.
And the harder you try the further you move from your goal of creating an identity. This is the Great fall. Until you realize fully that you are only an instrument in the hands of the Master and he is the director of the whole show he keeps cooking you.
Our Master makes sure that we do not get stuck in any false identities and only aim for the highest and keeps giving us such experiences. 🙂
He is himself the epitome of humility and that’s for us to learn from. He even feels the thirst of a plant ,so sensitive he is. His message of love is moving this world and as his messengers the 1st and foremost for us is to learn to be humble , polite , sensitive and loving to all.
If we have these qualities and none other, we are eligible to represent him but if the above are missing I think we missed the boat!
– Regards and Love