On the auspicious occasion of Guru Purnima, a devotee express his gratitude for the tatva that lights up his life for real #ThankYouSriSri
It was no ordinary day. Being coaxed by my friends and a doctor as a possible cure for my migraine which was almost becoming chronic, I was attending the Art of Living Basic Course (as it was called then) in Bangalore with of lot of reluctance. The first two days were no big deal. Nothing extraordinary! It didn’t look like I was heading towards anything like a cure for my headache. I was feeling vindicated about my conviction that there is no way a white-robed, long-haired guru can cure my migraine which the modern science has failed to do so.
The world changed the next day. It was the day of the Sudarshan Kriya! The day when my Guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar lovingly whispered something very deep into my consciousness! The sound was so amazingly soothing that the meaning of what was heard didn’t really matter. I became just unconditionally happy! It was later that I got to know what “So Ham” actually means. Who cares? #ThankYouSriSri
Then on, life became beautiful. I felt light, I began to smile effortlessly. I became one with my own life. I became free! My anger dropped, negative feelings gave way to more refined and positive patterns! Oh, I almost forgot to mention about my migraine. No wonder! It’s has been 14 years since my last migraine attack and my first Sudarshan Kriya! #ThankYouSriSri
Was it a magic? Or did something logical really happen? Being a journalist who was trained and programmed to be a skeptic about anything under the sun, I was not going to dismiss it easily as an out-of-the-world occurrence! Was it something like hypnotism? There could be a thousand and one ways to explain that phenomenon. But one I actually think that made all the difference was that I connected with my Guru that moment. He whispered infinity into my ears!
In a few paces of breath, I was taken to a new world of serenity, bliss and liveliness! Until then, I was totally ignorant about and oblivious to the very existence of a world like that!
What wizardry did the guru do? He didn’t do any manipulation! He just lifted the veils and planted a new level of awareness in me! And that’s the role a true Guru plays! Unlike, the teachers who give shiksha (knowledge), a Guru gives diksha (heightened awareness). He kindles the life force. He awakens the pinnacle of intellect.
He actually started teaching me about life. Sri Sri made me realize how different layers of my existence interplay, what controls my mind, what nourishes my soul, etc. As I acquired a little understanding about life, it became simpler to handle. That’s logical, for anything you have knowledge about becomes easy to handle. For those who have knowledge of cooking, even making an elaborate and lavish meal is a child’s play. But to the one who has no knowledge, even making a cup of tea becomes a challenging task.
That explains why we need a Guru, a mentor, in life. Whatever we have learnt in life is because we have had a teacher to teach us. I know writing because I had teachers who taught me journalism. Many of us know driving because we learnt it from that instructor from the local driving school. The equation is that simple. We have always needed a guru to gain knowledge. But paradoxically we feel we don’t need a guru to learn about life. How can it be possible?
Why, then, is this reluctance to accept a Guru for life? Is it because we don’t know whom to learn from about life? Or is it hard to trust someone with our lives? But Indian culture has always revered the concept of a spiritual guru. Even in the Sufi tradition, the system of peer-mursheed is sacrosanct! Having a Master was not just considered a matter of pride, but a mandatory progression!
This beautiful offering from the Guru Strotam by Adi Shankaracharya sums it up all. “Na guror adhikam tatwam, na guror adhikam tapa, Na guror adhikam jnanam.” There is no principle is greater than Guru. No penance is greater than Guru. And no wisdom is greater than Guru! I am at the centre of that ultimate principle! And that’s what I am really feeling grateful about this Guru Purnima!