16. The Servant

The jobs like storing water, cleaning utensils, sweeping, making flour, washing clothes, and cleaning toilets are considered low standard jobs. It's not that people don't have time but they think that the lowly people should do these jobs. That is why they have servants to do these things. Those people are considered having low standard and are treated badly.

Gandhiji did not consider any work as low. He had same feelings even before he started the Ashram. There were many servants in his home but they were not treated like servants.

When Gandhiji was a child, they had a maid named Rambha. Gandhiji remembered and respected her like his own mother. Rambha had taught him in his childhood that chanting Ram naam could save him from fear. Gandhiji never forgot this advice.

After he became a Barrister, Gandhiji lived in Mumbai for some time. He had a Brahmin servant who cooked meals for him. He had been abroad and had a rich Western life style. Yet he never treated him as a servant.

When he lived in South Africa, he earned a lot of money. There they had so many things to do in the house. Yet he and Kasturba cleaned the toilets, washed clothes and did many other things themselves. They had a number of servants in the house but they treated them like their family members. When they came to live in the Ashram, they made it a rule to do everything themselves. They did not hire a servant. People who want to serve humanity don't discriminate between an employer and a servant.