At the Sri Badrika Ashram during the New Year celebrations, December 2019, I was astounded by an announcement Om Swamiji made. A child – Krish, about ten years old, had registered a Random Act of Kindness (RAK) on the Black Lotus app every day for around 500 days.

Mind boggling!!! 500 days of practiced kindness by a child!!! I have believed that adults have a LOT to learn from children. This was one more learning prompt for me.

I was pricked. The best streak of RAKs I had done was of 11 days. Though I had tried to do longer streaks, I never got down to it. Maybe it was just laziness, maybe the resolve wasn’t strong enough, maybe the conviction needed strengthening. That’s when this announcement hit me.

It strengthened my resolve but still I didn’t get to down to it. I guess another trigger was still required and its funny how things can get started off.

The Black Lotus app was upgraded in August 2020.

In the previous version, separate streaks were maintained for Meditation, Chanting and Kindness. I was on a meditation streak of over 500 days and intended to continue it. In the new version, there was only one kind of streak. It was then that I decided to do everything in the app every day to keep my streak going. I started my Register-A-RAK-A-Day effort in real earnest.

Call it the Universe or maybe Swamiji working His way through His devotees, the fact is that since then, I have found an opportunity to do a RAK every single day for the last 4 months.

It’s great, the way the Universe Conspires for you when you really want to do something. There have been a few incidents since then which makes me conclude that this is indeed the case.

1)      There was a day when it was already 8:00 PM and I hadn’t done anything to qualify as a RAK. I was telling my wife this. I thought I would miss the RAK for the day.

In the pandemic, reduced interaction with people has been a challenge. It had also been a tiring day. My wife and I agreed to drive around a bit in our locality to have a change of scene. While doing so, we stopped at a signal light.

Suddenly a person came up to my car and knocked on the window. He looked normal and well-dressed. I lowered my window to enquire. He said he had lost his purse and needed some money to return home. I gave him some money and he left.

My wife and I both realized that the opportunity to help someone had come upon us in the most unexpected manner. I thanked the Universe for providing this chance and happily registered the RAK in the app.

2)      On another occasion (8-Oct as per my diary), it was already 9:00 PM and I was again cribbing about not having done a RAK for the day. We had no intention of stepping out of the house either. Just when I thought my streak was going to break, there was a ring on my doorbell. One of the apartment guards had come to deliver something to me. It was uncommon for this to happen as we are expected to collect our parcels from the gate.

I realized I had the opportunity. I thanked him, appreciated his work wholeheartedly, ensured he smiled and happily registered my RAK of the day.

3)      A similar incident happened again when the person who cleans my car showed up at 9:30 PM one night asking for the car keys. It was a day when I hadn’t registered a RAK yet and I got the opportunity to appreciate and thank him for the diligence in his work.

4)      There have been days when I found opportunities to share positive comments on public forums, help co-workers, feed strays, etc.

With a vast store of opportunities listed in the app, it becomes easy with time to practice kindness and make it a habit. The results are very positive – peace, calmness, happiness.

My learning is that the Universe operates in its very subtle ways. We have the freedom to resolve and act at the right time. The rest is all part of the Grand Design. Elevated souls like Swamiji probably perceive our resolve and help us tread on the path without being harmed. We are only instruments in the hands of the Almighty.

I would be gratified if anyone reading this post could take one strong resolve – no matter how small, towards developing and spreading positivity or kindness or compassion and let the Universe work its way through you to make the resolve a reality.

Wishing you a Very Happy New Year filled with joy and kindness!!!

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Subhash Iyer

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