Bhagwati had always been full of life and laughter. She shared a wonderful relationship with her husband. Together they had produced three beautiful children. All of them were well settled and had kids of their own. Bhagwati and her husband went to attend a fireworks display at the city club. It was a spectacular performance. But as the show was about to draw to an end, one ‘rocket’ firecracker flew off right into Bhagwati’s direction and went straight into her eyes. There was excruciating pain. She was rushed to the hospital. After hours of surgery, the doctor came out with a forlorn face. They had not been able to do much. Most likely she would not be able to see again.
The bandages were opened after a couple of days. The doctor’s worst fears came true. Only about 10% vision was there. She could vaguely make out the objects or people in front of her. A year later her husband passed away from a massive heart attack.
Fifteen years later… Bhagwati’s daughter came by, she was very excited. “Ma, I met an eye surgeon who has performed surgeries on many cases such as yours. I had an extensive discussion with him; he is sure that he can operate upon you and get back your eyesight. Isn’t it great Ma, you’ll be able to see again. I’m so excited. I can’t wait to take you to him. Shall I fix an appointment for tomorrow…? Ma listened in silence. Her daughter paused and asked, “Ma! Why don’t you say something?”
“I don’t want it,” said Bhagwati firmly.
“Don’t want it? But why? Her daughter asked in amazement.
“I’m quite happy as I am. I have learnt to manage my life on my own. I have no desire to change things.’
“But Ma, think of all that you are missing out on. You’ll be able to see all of us. You’ll be able to see how your grand children have grown. You can go for a walk without the maid to help you. You can drive, you can watch television, you can read the news papers, and you can see the world Ma! … Don’t be a pessimist.”
The old lady waited patiently till her daughter had finished. Then she said firmly, “First of all I want you to be very clear that I am not missing out on anything. My life is very good. If there is anything I miss, it’s your father. Think of all the friends. I have made because I lost my eyesight. Wherever I go, people go out of their way to help me. Be it the chemist or the grocer; be it at the park or at the ladies club. I am a VIP wherever I go. I enjoy having Ravi read out the newspapers to me. The driver, the doctor, the tailor … My list of friends is endless. I would lose them all if I were to get my eyesight back. And … I have beautiful memories of your brothers and you and all my grandchildren. If I stay this way, all of you shall never grow old in my eyes. Isn’t that wonderful?”
Tears welled up in Bhagwati’s eyes as she said that. Her daughter realised how satisfied her mother was and how much at peace she was with herself. There was no point talking about the surgeon. The vision in her mind’s eye was alive and vibrant. She did not need anymore…. She had understood that, if you want peace, you have to look within.
Baba says, it is not important to get what you like. It is important to like whatever you get. Accepting God’s will is most essential for inner peace. They say, ‘Man is the only animal that laughs and weeps; for he is the only animal that is struck with the difference between what things are and what they ought to be.’
Happiness lies within yourself – in your way of thinking. It comes from within; not from outside.