Baba says, ‘You know that you must definitely offer bhog to Shiv Baba’. This is like giving regard to Him.
God is the Incorporeal One. He doesn’t have physical needs – doesn’t need to eat, drink, doesn’t need a house to live in, clothes to wear etc. We souls, His children, are also incorporeal but unlike the Father, we have bodies of our own with which to play our parts on this world stage. So, we do need food and drink, clothes and a home. And while the Father is incorporeal, He still supplies every one of the needs of His children – physical and spiritual. He doesn’t just preach or lecture me on how to be a good soul, He fulfills the relationship of a father and mother. He sustains His children in every way.
When I have faith that this is in fact the case, there isn’t a question of whether I should offer bhog to Baba or not. If I still question this, it means I haven’t settled the issue of whom it all belongs to, who the source is.
‘But’, I think, ‘if He is Incorporeal and doesn’t need anything, why do I need to offer anything?’ At a fundamental level, it’s a gesture of regard. I offer first to the One Who is the Giver before I accept it for myself. But on a deeper level, when I make an offering – whether of food, money, time, talent…whatever- what I am really offering is the impure ‘I and mine’. What I am effectively imbibing through that simple act is that this is not mine, but Yours. God doesn’t take anything from me, He doesn’t need anything, He is the Bestower. But when I offer myself– body, mind, wealth– to Him, He takes away the body consciousness and the impure attachments. He spiritualizes it and returns it back to me, pure.
This is what Brahma Baba did – he offered himself completely to God and His task. He used his body, mind and wealth but for Baba’s task. For the body, the words that emerged naturally were: “This is Baba’s chariot”. He never thought: “This is my body”. It was always, “I am feeding Baba’s chariot”, not “I am eating”. His mind was Manmanabhav, always thinking about new ways to serve, new ways to get Baba’s message out to all the children who are still searching for their Father. He used his money, but never thought or even said, “My money is being used”. He said, “This is Baba’s bhandara. It is the bhandara of Bholanath Baba.” He never used any time or breath on himself, but always remained busy in Baba’s task till the very end. He never made decisions without first consulting with Baba, it was always clear Who was in charge, Whose work was getting done and Who was getting it done.
He is KaranKaravanhaar, the Doer and the One Who gets everything done. I have the incredible privilege as His child to be the caretaker, the manager, the steward of His task and His resources but I am not the owner. He is.
A lot of people think they are getting everything done: ‘I worked really hard for that promotion’, ‘I earned it based on my talent and skills’, ‘I work 50 hrs/week and so I deserve the success I have’ etc. etc. I don’t realize or I forget Who gave me that idea or that creativity that got me that promotion, how it came to me ‘from nowhere’, I forget how I was just at the right place at the right time, how that person was good to me for no reason, how I suddenly gained the confidence to make that presentation. I think I am the source or that people or that job are the source, when in fact, they are not. Only God is the Source.
When I acknowledge this truth that He is my Provider and then apply that same talent and skill, I will see multi-million fold return, I am able to envision and accomplish things I never ever dreamed. Sure, I might have seen success already today but I’ve had to labor, I’ve had to cut corners, compromise for it. When I partner with God, I am able to accomplish exponentially more and with ease and without compromise. Similarly, when I prepare my meals in remembrance and offer it first to Baba, that food fills me with strength and nourishes the body. When I eat with Baba, I feel His love and companionship. When I give my time to Baba’s task, I receive happiness and fulfillment, I grow as a person. A lot of people struggle with offering financially: ‘In this day and age, God doesn’t expect me to contribute financially, it’s hard’, ‘Baba, when You need help, let me know and I will offer then’ or even if they do contribute, many do so out of a sense of compulsion. Baba does not accept such offerings. For this method of giving a little and receiving multi-millionfold in return to work, I have to do so cheerfully, with love, and honesty.
Whatever you do with your heart reaches Dilaram, the Comforter of Hearts, says Baba. If someone does something simply to show others, then that is used up in making a show; it doesn’t reach the Comforter of Hearts. This is why you, who act from your heart, are good. If you do something from your heart, you become a multi-millionaire, whereas if you do a thousand times as much just for show, you don’t become a multi-millionaire. The income of the heart, the income of love, is a true income. What do you earn money for? Isn’t it for service? Or, is it for your own comfort? So, the income of a true heart is that one becomes multimillion-fold. If you earn and save for your own comfort then, although you might have comfort here, you will later become instruments who give comfort to others. By having rest and comfort here, you will become instruments who have to give rest and comfort there. Therefore, whatever you earn with love and a true heart and use for service, you are using that in a worthwhile way. You receive blessings from many souls.
Even on the path of bhakti, you who are Godly helpers at this time are remembered along with the Father, He says. To become a Godly helper is to become His angel; it is to use my body, mind and wealth in His task, in giving His introduction to all souls who are lost and wandering searching for their Father, for their home, for their identity. This is offering bhog to Baba. To help the Father and Mother in their task is giving them love and regard.