Who Is Hugging Her Now?

Once a pretty young girl was stung by a scorpion.  It happened on a mountain top, at evening time.  To go to the clinic down below, you had to descend a thousand steps.  There were mostly monks and spiritual aspirants around, and everyone was trying to figure out what to do.  The girl was lying on the ground crying, and her mother also was crying.  A renunciate is not supposed to touch a girl, so the monks were planning to get a stretcher or something on which to move her.

As they were planning, I said, "This is all foolishness."  I grabbed her, put her on my shoulder and ran down the hill to clinic.  The doctor immediately gave her an injection, after which she calmed down and fell asleep.  But all the people around started gossiping, "Look at that swami.  How could he carry a girl like that?  Look at the way he hugged her."

For four or five days this was bubbling, and it slowly reached my Gurudev, Swami Sivanandaji.  During his next talk he looked at the sannyasis and said, Ah.  Who is hugging the girl now?  You or him?  True, he carried her down the hill, but he put her down at the clinic.  All of you are still carrying her."

From  The Golden Present Daily Inspirational Readings by Sri Swami Satchidananda (June 20).