Easwaran’s Talks & Writings

The Tamarind Tree

By Eknath Easwaran

My grandmother, who was my spiritual teacher, always used the tamarind tree to illustrate the power of ordinary people. The tamarind is a big tree, with very small, thin leaves. On a hot day, the people of my old state of Kerala like to sleep in its shade. The leaves are so numerous and are packed so closely together that they protect us from the tropical sun just as if they were one large canopy. “Little Lamp, you don’t have to look for big people,” Granny would tell me. “Look for little people like yourself, then band together and work in harmony.”

So don’t be intimidated by position or power or wealth. If little people like you and me work together, we can do a great deal to transform the world. Taken together, these small daily efforts to improve our ordinary lives live up to a very powerful force that, in the years to come, can become a kind of spiritual revolution, providing a firm foundation for the kind of political, economic, and ecological improvements we need to make.


This excerpt is from Eknath Easwaran's book Renewal.

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Suggested stories and teachings

  • A Light in the Darkness

    To make our full contribution, Easwaran writes, we need to train the mind to be at peace and then radiate that peace to all those around us.

  • Answering the Need of the Times

    How can meditation help the world? Easwaran explains how this ancient spiritual practice helps us to create positive change in modern times.

  • Spiritual Education & Right Occupation

    Addressing the age-old question, “What should I do with my life?”, Easwaran shows us in this 30-minute audio talk how the great mystics of the world can help us find answers.