In the early 1990s I offered seva in Annapurna kitchen at Shree Muktananda Ashram. One day there was a special meal, and the cooks made a dish with many gallons of milk. There were empty bottles and milk crates all around. I was on my way to eat lunch when Venkappanna approached me and said, “You are a manager in the kitchen. Look at this mess! Do something.” Although I was not a kitchen manager, I took responsibility. I got to work rinsing each bottle, placing the bottles in the crates, and mopping the floor.
I had just finished as Venkappanna returned from lunch. He saw that everything was tidy and asked if I had cleaned that area. I said “yes.” And then he asked if I had eaten lunch, and I said “no.” With a big smile he invited me to eat some special food he had prepared. It was the most delicious food you can imagine, filled with love. I felt very accepted and loved. I am grateful to Venkappanna for his way of teaching me about the attitude one should have when offering seva.
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