A story about love, compassion and devotion.

“All the supply in this world is within you and it has to flow out FROM you. It cannot come TO you. If you want to demonstrate supply, you have got to begin with ‘What have I in the house.’ And then you have got to begin to share it.”  Spiritual teacher Joel S. Goldsmith, from a 1956 Melbourne class

Sindhutai Sapkal’s life story encompasses both heart-wrenching tragedy and radiant transformation. She started life as an unwanted child, was married to an abusive husband, and then abandoned when she was nine-months pregnant. She refused to let any of this close down her heart or stifle her spirit.  The circumstances she has faced could force anyone to lose courage and succumb to the adverse situations. But Sindhutai emerged stronger with every difficulty she faced and became a ‘mother’ to over 1400 homeless children when she herself was in a hand-to-mouth situation!

The 68-year-old lady Sindhutai is commonly referred to as “Mother of Orphans” and as she talks about her life and her children you can see the pain, the troubles and the miseries she has faced and overcome with her hard work during her life time. “I am there for all those who have no one,” she says with a lot of affection. You can see flashes of her life as she talks about her journey and how she became the “mother”.

Born on 14 November, 1948 at Pimpri Meghe village in Wardha district of Maharashtra, she was nicknamed “Chindhi” which means a torn piece of cloth. She was married at a tender age of 10 to a 30-year old man. Her abusive husband beat her up and threw her out of the house when she was 20 and nine-months pregnant. She gave birth to a baby girl in a cow shelter outside their house the same day and walked a few kilometers in that condition to her mother’s place, who refused to give shelter to her. She thought of committing suicide, but instead started begging at railway platforms for food to feed her daughter.

As she spent more time begging, she realized that there are many orphans and children abandoned by their parents. Having faced the difficulties herself, she could feel their pain and she decided to adopt them. She started begging more earnestly in order to feed the many children that she had adopted. To-date she has adopted and nurtured over 1,400 orphans, helped them get an education, treats them as her own and some of them are now lawyers, doctors and engineers. Sindhutai has gathered a huge family that includes over 1000 grandchildren. To-date she continues to fight for the next meal. She does not take support from anyone but still gives speeches to earn her daily bread and butter.

For her immense courage and compassion she has received over 500 awards. Whatever amount she received as awards, she used it to construct homes for her children. The construction is still going on and she is constantly looking for more help across the globe to give shape to her dreams.

Her life’s story inspired many and a Marathi film called “Mee Sindhutai Sapkal” was made on her which won a national award.

To read the entire article visit: http://www.dailygood.org/story/1236/she-begged-on-the-streets-so-she-could-feed-every-orphan-she-saw-shreya-pareek/