Kanwal Prakash “KP” Singh
A CALLING TO SERVICE
As they say, “it takes a village to raise a child,”
we all know it takes a lot of every-day unsung and unheralded
heroes at many levels with diverse ordinary and extraordinary
gifts and contributions with age, gender, ethnicity, culture,
faith, or experience being no bar that help define, enrich,
and serve a community and our world; make our shared universe
a more tolerable and exciting place. We admire heroes; want
to be like them.
Beyond the famous inventor and innovator, author and educator,
astronaut and artist, explorer and scientist, war hero and
righteous warrior, philanthropist and spiritual mentor,
there is a vast “army of every-day heroes: parents,
teachers, law-enforcement officials, medical personnel,
and daring young pioneers who demonstrate unimagined courage,
leadership, and angelic qualities under difficult assignments
These every-day heroes step forward for the love of it,
impulse of the moment, not for the rewards and accolades
but to save a life, uplift a broken spirit, make a difference,
their life in service of others as a testimony of their
embraced faith-inspired mandate. These often unknown and
uncelebrated heroes are the true champions of humanity.
At great personal risk and with unbounded innate goodness,
they guide our threatened world to the safety of friendly
“shores” during turbulent events or tough times
in our lives. They become answers to our prayers.
These every-day heroes surprise us, and themselves, by
their immense and often hidden and untested capacity for
thoughtful and humanitarian intervention. Many appear, like
angels, when we least expect and disappear no sooner, perhaps
to another Good Samaritan calling, but not before leaving
a lasting and profound impact on our lives. Their efforts
often avert a tragedy or catastrophe and save a situation
that may demand urgent and timely response. Faith and national
histories are full of testimonies of countless such heroes,
brave and enlightened souls who tirelessly served the cause
of humanity, and stand tall as brilliant lights for our
life-journey. They direct our attention to our responsibility
and moral accountability in life to All Life and All Creation.
The Song of the Buddhist Monks reminds us: “Give
new gifts; Give new gifts each day; Give new gifts reach
for new Heavens.” Lord Christ reminds us: “Give
unto the least among you and you give unto Me.” The
Sikh scriptures remind us: “If you serve during your
earthly journey, then alone you are accorded a place in
the Court of the Lord in the Hereafter.” Celebrations
of Easter, Baisakhi, Diwali, Hannukah, Christmas, high holy
days of other faith traditions, and all Scriptures and Sacred
Texts affirm this message and moral commandment. Human commitment
to tireless service (seva) gives birth to new heroes, so
also making the impossible possible with The Great Spirit
by our side.
Our every-day heroes symbolize what is right about humanity.
They represent an affirmation of God’s Love and Presence
among us. Our every-day heroes are an embodiment of thoughtful
concern, selfless sacrifice, and God’s promised assurance
that we ‘would not be abandoned’ during our
darkest hour and most challenging times. These heroes also
inspire us to create our own lasting legacy of special contributions
to society and life around us.
Many every-day heroes, parents and teachers among them,
serve as a continuous sunshine and shield from harm: uplift
us when we are hurting, make incredible sacrifices and investments
to prepare us to face life’s formidable uncertainties
that may lie ahead.
They are our first-on-the-scenes lifeline to safety and
well-being and role model heroes.
All heroes are our common divinely-inspired human family,
with a deeply enshrined belief and commitment to the greater
good of the human universe. They are our undisputed heroes;
our guiding lights, our trusted and admired anchors scattered
across the global village and for every generation from
the beginning of time and life. The world rests on their
giant shoulders and on many others who inspire us to action,
innovation, and trail blazing along the way.
Kanwal Prakash “KP” Singh
Indianapolis, Indiana USA
April 14, 2007