Guru buddhyaat mano naanyat, satyam satyam
na samshayaha; Tallaa bhaartham prayat nastu,
kartavyo hi manishibhibhi.
The Guru is the same as the Self, the same, as Consciousness
itself. This is the truth. This is the absolute truth. Those who
seek wisdom should make every effort to find their guru.
an extract from the Guru G ita.
The Guru-disciple or sisya relationship today is often regarded, by Westerners as an out-dated
relic carried over from an unsophisticated and superstitious East.
When regarded from a purely intellectual point of view, it can be related to
the psychologist-patient relationship and the relationship of transference, but is
so much more subtle and powerful than that.
The word guru is composed of two sacred syllables.
Gu which represents the darkness and
ru, which represents light. Gu is maya and ru is
the destruction of maya. Gu is the state which is beyond
the three gunas and ru is emptiness. The guru is he
who gives the experience of darkness melting into light,
maya, dissolving into clarity and formation revealing wisdom.
When the topic arises, I am often met with ‘why would you want to give
your power away to someone else?’ and ‘we do not need a guru, we have everything
we need within ourselves.’
Both these statements are based on cliches and sound very ‘true’ and yes, on a certain
level they are both true. But they also display a sense of ignorance to what a relationship
with a guru entails. Our Western conditioning and culture (and some would argue that
this is not Western, but American) teaches us from a young age that the individual is the centre
of the universe. And the Jungian term ‘individuation’ is also often interpreted from that
point of view. Whereas spirituality teaches that the One is All and All is One and that
we are all inter-related and that the One is guiding you on your life journey and that it is
Thy Will and not my will.
The most evident characteristics of those who have made the transition to the inner world,
are usually a great sense of peace and of being ‘at rest’. But if you observe their lives, you
will notice that they still face their daily challenges and that their lives are not always
filled with worldly peace and abundance. But the peace that comes from within
transcends any worldly obstacle, challenge or personal desire.
When one has travelled a certain distance into the personal sacred landscape within, a few lessons have
been learnt. These are Acceptance, Allowing, Forgiveness and Surrender.
None of these contain personal will or desire.
All of these imply great trust and faith.
All of these imply a deep sense of being safe and taken care of.
the dedication of one’s life to the Guru
is extraordinary. Everything is affected by this devotion –
the devotee’s mother, father, family and ancestry
are all blessed.
Even the earth itself rejoices.
For a Westerner conditioned to believe in a formless God, it is very
difficult to learn to surrender. The many voices within vie for kingship and the
upper hand. The Trickster disguises itself as a divine being, and indeed,
the ‘gods’ of the mythical soul journey rules the kingdom within.
The Guru Gita states that personal guru is a personification of the Divine Guru.
The challenges and blows in life does not manifest in a disembodied form, out of the sky, like a
lightning bolt. Although it at times seems like it, it is always a very personal and
intimate event. You feel it in your deepest self and one strives to defend and protect
this deepest intimacy – both from others, from God and from life.
Being in a personal relationship of trust, opens the heart and helps
you lower the defenses. This can be in any personal relationship of trust as all
relationships are indeed ‘spiritual’, in other words there is no separation between
the mundane and the profane.
A guru relationship, however, goes much deeper than this. The personal
guru is indeed a metaphor for the Guru Within, Everything experienced
in the energy field of the personal guru is regarded as a metaphor
for the journey into deeper intimacy into the Self.
Surrendering to the personal Guru facilitates surrender to the Self.
There are many paths to awakening to that which is truly beyond the senses
and that which cannot be shared by anyone in any form whatsoever.
In my personal experience I know the path of kundalini awakening
and the personal guru, to be a direct and powerful path.
The guru is beyond any description whatsoever. No
imputed terms can describe him. Thus, the Vedas say
‘neti neti’ – he is not this, he is not that. Contemplate
this great mystery and continually worship him with
both mind and speech.
One can only ‘know’ the full meaning of a relationship with a
personal guru, when one has directly experienced the boon.
I am far as well as near.
I am inside everything and outside everything all at once.
I am beyond cause and effect.