Read #1 book on Hinduism and enhance your understanding of ancient Indian history.
Read #1 book on Hinduism and enhance your understanding of ancient Indian history.

Thomas Augustine



Thomas Augustine


All About Help

All About Help

5 mins 237 5 mins 237

Vijay, a friend of mine, is a stock market advisor, employed with a big-time stock broking company. He has this to say about his job/profession: "I help people to invest wisely! And because I help them do so, they earn. If not for me, would they have earned anything?" he asked me with so much self-pride. But I was laughing from within as I wondered: If one were to go by this logic, everyone on earth was helping; then be it even a shopkeeper. What nonsense!

Vijay is into a business that requires him to get people to invest their money. And since he brings in the investment, he gets paid for it by his stock broking company, and his stockbroking company then gets paid by the company whose stock has been purchased (by investors).

To simplify the whole thing: A person/investor gives his money to a company that has its stock listed on the stock exchange. Vijay's company (a stock broking company) convinces people to part away with few thousand rupees, by way of buying stocks. But where comes the thing called help, here?

No one here is helping anyone. Vinay is only bringing business for his company, by convincing people to part away with their money. This money then makes its way up to the stock market, and finally, the profit is shared by all. So neither Vijay, nor his company, and nor did the investor help anyone. All of them are doing "business", and the word "help" is being cunningly used. 

Companies today have Innovative advertisement writings, intended to sell products. But no matter how creatively or innovatively the word "help" is used in an advertisement, "help" will still remain help (in its true sense).

 Then there is this guy, Joseph, who is mockingly called a fool by his friends. The best thing about him is, he does not give any explanation for his, so-called, foolish acts. He just smiles and takes it as a compliment. For him, the matter ends there. But, he has repeatedly been doing these, so-called, foolish things. And how can someone repeatedly keep doing foolish things? There was a need to study this 35-year-old man, a loner, who worked as a translator to earn his living.  

One fine day, as we traveled back home from our office, I asked him, "Joseph, don't you have an explanation to give them? I mean, they call you a fool." With his trademark politeness he asked me, "would you like to be a fool who helps, or would you like to be a cunning guy (smarty); and earn a huge amount of money?" I wanted to reply, to prove that he was indeed a fool, but I found myself scrambling to find words. It was as if my thoughts were wrestling, with my tongue. He kept looking at me. He wanted to hear what I had to say. But what could I say? Nothing! Joseph, as usual, accepted the fact that he was a fool, for being kind-hearted and getting cheated, most of the time.

A while later, he spoke "every one of us wants to earn big, and save for tomorrow. No amount is a satisfactory amount (of money) for us. The more we earn, the more is the desire to earn even more. There's no full stop to it! If I lend a helping hand to people, and if the same ones cheat me in return, how am I to be blamed for it?"

I interrupted to remind him that, he never went behind those people, to recover the money lent. And in doing so, he was being least bothered. But Joseph's reply was again something new. "Look, friend! When people cannot pay you back, it means they are going through bad times. Recovering debts in such times only adds to their misery. They will pay back when they have." "What if they don't," I asked him. "That's how it is! Help is given without expectation. Else, it's no help at all".

I thought to myself… "and this is the guy whom we all call a fool. What a joke!" Joseph then got my attention back with a daily life example.  

"Listen, young man", said Joseph! ...and he proceeded: "There's this beggar standing on the street, asking for alms (which in true sense means help). But most people have no time to help, while others don't care…and they just walk away. But, among the many who walked past the beggar, there's this man who stops, takes out his wallet, and gives the beggar a few coins. The beggar acknowledges his kindness by bowing his head; a gesture most of us use to say thank you. 

The ones who did not have the time to stop and put in a coin, and help, will not land up in hell. But the ones who stopped by and put in a coin will definitely be blessed, for they have helped (in the true sense). Even in this fast-paced world, where time means money, some have stopped for a while and helped.

When you help, you open a 'Goodwill Account', unknowingly. The blessing for the help that was once lent, comes back in some or the other forms from the almighty. It could be in the form of a job, a long-pending payment, etc. coming into your bank account, or unexpected help from some unknown sources…and so on. So, the 'Goodwill Account' that was once opened by you, almost unknowingly, gets credited with huge benefits, almost unexpectedly, by the almighty. This is the payment I am awaiting with great expectation".

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