Why are you volunteering for #dasvandhweek?
I’m volunteering for Dasvandh Week because I’m inspired by the saakhee of Bhai Soma Jee, who embodied the spirit of giving, giving selflessly even when he had nothing left to the Guru. Whenever Guru Raam Daas Jee would walk by Soma Jee’s food stall, near Darbar Sahib, he would request Soma Jee to give his earnings of the day. A few days, this happened and Soma Jee would hand over the bag without question. It got to a point where Soma Jee would automatically hand Guru Sahib the money without needing prompting. But, that meant that he was losing money as well; his business was suffering. A few days later, he asked Guru Sahib, “why do you need my money, Paatshaah?” and Guru Sahib would answer, “I just need it, Soma.” And, that would appease him. However, as the days went by, Soma struggled to make ends meet. Soma Jee then beseeched Guru Sahib the next day saying, “Guru Sahib, I don’t have any other money to give you… all that I have is Yours and even more. I just beg of one thing from you… my mother has been starving for the past two weeks. I tell her every night that she has to make ends meet and that for the sake of her son’s happiness, she should ignore her rumbling stomach…but, she’s getting old. She can not survive without food. I just ask for two parshaade for her.” At this point, Guru Sahib, seeing the humility and selflessness of Soma Jee, said, “Here, Someya. Here’s your entire wealth back…You are now a Shah in my eyes.” This saakhee inspires me to think of giving dasvandh as not just seva, and not just a hukam of the Guru but an extension of the selfless life that Gursikhs are expected to live- even when they have nothing to give, they are giving all that they have to those who need it the most.
What is one of your favorite childhood memories?
My favorite childhood memory is running around the huge lake with the neighborhood kids, playing hide-n-seek in the trees until midnight or until my mother got angry at us. My brother and I would come home with dirty clothes, multiple scratches and smiles on our faces.