Kindred Spirit Tales (1): Krishna, the Real Proprietor

This year the store is not doing all that well—at least compared to last year at Christmas. So that requires some adjustment for the owners. Kindred Spirits is a service to the local community which includes seekers, yet it is also a business through which devotees earn a living and give to the BBT book fund. Success in business requires a sort of sixth sense to know what people want, a pleasant personality, and of course the karmic tendency to run a business and attract “laxmi” or money.

This year the store is not doing all that well—at least compared to last year at Christmas. So that requires some adjustment for the owners. Kindred Spirits is a service to the local community which includes seekers, yet it is also a business through which devotees earn a living and give to the BBT book fund. Success in business requires a sort of sixth sense to know what people want, a pleasant personality, and of course the karmic tendency to run a business and attract “laxmi” or money.

Personally, I also want the business to do well, since I know that the money generated is used for such good purposes. They are my friends as well, so I feel some of their pain. At the same time, as a salaried employee I am not affected in the same way. Since I am not the proprietor of the business I don’t have the responsibility, and am more easily detached from the results. From the KC perspective we are all meant to think ourselves an employee of Krishna in our work life [in other words we are working for him, the real boss].

In the Gita’s 5th chapter, 29th verse we learn that not only are none of us the proprietor of any business or even our own body, but neither are we the enjoyer of the results of our work, or a real friend of anyone. If we can truly realize this then we can be peaceful in any situation, and will not become entangled by the results of our work. If we know we are not the doer, then we have no results to suffer or enjoy [Gita 2.47, 5.14]. We dedicate our work and its’ results for the satisfaction of Krishna. Seeing Krishna as the true proprietor of our business, profit and loss are his responsibility [Gita 18.57]. Our identity is “Krishna dasanudas”, or the servant of the servant of Krishna.