Friday, July 9, 2010

A Great Sabha has nothing to do with Sabha: Why Sabha is a lot like a Table Top (and other fun analogies and scenarios!)

I know. You are really used to outrageous statements to get you and your mandal to start thinking, doing, and living.

But really. I mean it. A Great Sabha has nothing to do with Sabha. Yep. We can go ahead and plan all of the sabhas we want, set up our calendars, and send out the syllabi - but really, they do not guarantee a great sabha.

Come on, think about it. We might have an amazing presenter or Sadguru Sant presenting this week, but what happens if no one shows up! We might have a full house of extremely pumped up youth on the tail end of a Mandal Outing, but the presenter conveniently forgot her materials at home or just plain did prepare and is now reading from the printout and trying her best to ad-lib.

Sound familiar?

So what does make a Great, Remarkable, Excellent, Amazing, Thought-Provoking, Can't-Wait-To-Get-Back-Next-Week SABHA?

Showing Up?
Being Prepared?
Being really, really Well Prepared?
Following up?
Reporting on time?
Knowing our material?
Following our seva consistently?
Keeping Maharaj & Swami front and center?

Well, it is all of these things above and more! It is also all of the points we have been discussing on this blog, at our regular meetings, at shibirs, at trainings, etc.

Let's think of it in another related way. Have you tried Pilates? Yoga? Ever worked out in your life? Well, one of the first things we will likely learn is about Core Conditioning. About building Core Strength before we try to run a marathon or win the game. Everything we do to ensure a Successful Sabha helps us build our core strength in Satsang.

Pilates has a basic position called Table Top, where I stand on all fours, but if my core is not in good shape, then even that basic position becomes a challenge! This is not unlike a table itself.

The table you are sitting at, eating at, or chilling at - you only really look at the surface itself. That's sabha. Sabha is the Table Top. Everything else that gives it support are the foundation. Generally the foundation is made up of 4 legs, but if you are into IKEA's desk systems, you'll know that legs can be made up of trestles, drawers, etc.

A Table is only as strong as its Foundation. And in the fast-paced, youthful life of ours full of adventure, it would be great to have a strong, well-supported table that we and our entire mandal can depend on.

So every week when we get together, we see the results of how much we worked out our core. Did we make the phone calls to the presenter? D id we follow up to make sure we have our AV equipment on time? Did we call kishoris to ensure they will be there on time? Are we doing our part to please Swamishri and, in the process, achieve great sabha?

Can we think of other legs or foundations that can help achieve Great Sabhas?

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