Guru Purnima ~ The full moon in July

Swami Satyadharma Saraswati

Guru is the sun, the energy of life. When the disciple feels the guru’s energy or grace flowing through him bountifully, all goes well. However, when he feels the supply is low, he goes through very dark periods.

It is not easy to accept the guru as an immense powerhouse until his energy waves are actually felt. He looks human; he walks, talks and eats just as other people do. What is he all about? Is he within or without? Is he that man who runs yoga institutions, goes touring, gives speeches and satsang, or is he the inspiration and motivation of our soul?

When the guru accepts and initiates a disciple, he actually connects him to the powerhouse of his super-conscious awareness. It is similar to installing electricity into someone’s house. After the house is wired, it is hooked up to the main relay station, which transforms the high voltage current sent from the powerhouse into lower voltage for individual homes, factories etc. Then when the switches are fixed in their proper places and turned on, electricity flows through the line giving light and power to run machines and appliances. In the ordinary household, this new supply of energy brings undreamed of innovations. It practically changes the whole family’s lifestyle and awareness, opening them up to so many new pastimes and time savers, from television to vacuum cleaners. The new light extends day into night, and the life of each family member automatically expands with the multitude of new possibilities before him. That household will never be the same as it was before it had electricity.

So it is with the disciple. When he gets hooked up to the guru’s relay station and powerhouse, new energy and light floods his being. Life takes on new dimensions for him. He begins to see, think about and understand things which had never crossed his mind before. He starts doing things which he never dreamed he could do. Some disciples change radically overnight; others progress more slowly. This depends on many things: the kind of line, the condition and layout of the circuitry, the size and condition of the fuses and switches, the availability and condition of appliances. Some disciples may have an ordinary line whereas others may have an industrial line, capable of receiving ten times more power. Some may be wired with copper which is strong and durable, others with tin which doesn’t hold up well. One disciple may have old, weak fuses with thin wires which can only handle very small currents without blowing. Others may have large, new fuses able to conduct a high voltage efficiently. Some disciples may only have tiny light bulbs bought from the local shop, while others may have big bright tube lights and many fine gadgets and machines. Yet with time the guru can accomplish many works. When energy is flowing between guru and disciple, many inner transformations happen, often without the disciple even knowing it. Even the dullest, most unpromising disciples are rewired. New and stronger fuses are put in to replace the old ones. Some may even get a bigger line installed. Useful appliances are easily acquired, and before you know it the uninspiring novice has become a shining yogic example.

This new infusion of energy opens up many channels of interest; creative ideas start to flow and the disciple begins to feel a more balanced attitude towards himself and the world. Long-standing mental and physical problems like asthma, blood pressure, depression etc. dissolve and are forgotten as if they never existed. The disciple’s connection to the guru, his power line so to speak, becomes the most important and guarded part of his life. All else may be lost or destroyed including his body and mind, but that line which connects him to the guru must be preserved, enlarged and strengthened, come what may. This is the disciple’s life. Through this line he receives energy just as the foetus receives nourishment from the umbilical cord. If the umbilical cord gets blocked or tears away, the foetus will die before it can be born. So the disciple would also die if anything happened to his guru cord, not physically or mentally of course, but spiritually. Thus the disciple soon finds his whole life centring around the line which connects him to guru. He lives, works, prays and stays with guru from moment to moment by the strength of that line, and by his own capacity to receive limited or unlimited amounts of energy and guidance through it.

Guru is certainly a mysterious power. Some say he is God. Others say definitely not just a guide, alight in the dark. To the disciple all these concepts are meaningless. Guru is the powerhouse whose immensity is beyond imagination or conception.

Guru is also the inner electrician who fixes all broken or loose lines and connections and the directing force that watches everything, comments on some things, gives advice and delivers lectures on others. Often in one’s sleep or in the course of daily duties, the silent voice of the guru is heard. It is a source of constant wonder how so much can be received from someone whom we hardly know at all and rarely see. How is it possible for one consciousness to be everywhere, giving so much, continuously and simultaneously to so many people all around the world? Yet many swamis and visitors who come to the ashram from far-off places like Australia, South America and Europe say that they feel the guru’s presence far more strongly when they are overseas than when they were living in Monghyr!

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