Monday, February 21, 2022

Fruit from a Guru


Kannada Article by: Vadirāja Prasanna

 English Rendering by: M R Bhashyam

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We have some problem or the other in our daily lives. We use some means to come out of these. If we cannot find solutions by ourselves, we consult others.


"The mother is the first teacher, Guru, and the home is the first school" is a saying which reflects our first learnings at home. As time progresses, we go to schools and colleges and educate ourselves under the tutelage of several teachers and Gurus and attain graduation. Hence, there is a practice of youngsters learning from elders. Nowadays, we can see that elders learn from youngsters about Computers, TV, Mobile etc. So, the common understanding of the present day is we have to learn from those who are knowledgeable and they are our Gurus.


But in Bhāratīya culture, the word Guru has a special meaning. "The letter Gu means darkness and the letter Ru means the One who obliterates it" meaning Guru is the one who removes darkness. So, a question arises as to what this darkness is and what does it mean to say it is eliminated?


It is important for one who does not know swimming to have proper guidance from an expert. If by over enthusiasm or carelessness one gets into water, it is possible that life will be in danger. Our life is also like a fast current.  We are being swept away in the deluge of our wants and aspirations. The flow of life does not stop and we cannot be at peace or be contended.  If we want to be peaceful, we should be able to swim in the flood of life and reach the banks. In this rush of worldly life, we need to take asylum in a Guru who has realized the immutable principles and is able to show them to us too.  A Guru can not only negotiate by himself but is also able to make the disciples who have taken refuge in him and follow his guidance, to navigate. Though a Guru may look like an ordinary person he is not afraid of worldly perils;, for, he is anchored to God and is traversing the inner-path, .  That is why the saying "Guru is Brahma, Guru is Viṣṇu and Guru is Mahesvara,  Guru is Parambrahman Himself, so prostrate to that Guru" has come into being. Here it is appropriate to recall the words of Śrī Śrīraṅga Mahāguru "The importance to a match stick is because it contains powder, not because it is a wooden stick. The word Guru is not used for the person but for the energy resident in him.   The power of that greatness comes to light when there is a union, the yoga, of Guru-Siśya (disciple) and the Lord.


Having realized Paramatman himself, a Mahāguru is someone who is able to make others also realize God when they come to him for asylum.  If we take refuge in such a guru and live a life as per his intent and traverse the path of yoga as per his direction, we can get rid of the internal darkness and realize the eternal effulgent light, the pinnacle of joy resident in our own selves. We can thus attain the ultimate fruit of liberation in this birth itself.  

Note: The Kannada version of this article can be viewed at AYVM blogs.