Relationship between a Disciple and a Guru

Recent events in India, have forced me to write on this delicate issue. What should be the relationship between a disciple and his/her Guru?

Ask anyone which subject they like most, and 90% of time the answer will be a subject taught by an adult (mostly school/college teacher) whom they adored. If in simple education, the prsence of love between student and teacher strengthens the flow of knowledge between them, then, spiritual knowledge is much more difficult to have, and requires utmost love and dedication of disciple towards their Spiritual teacher/Guru. Don't stop reading here!! I know you are thinking what a crap, but just have a little patience.

When I love the subject, the work I am doing, I give my 100% to it, and spiritual knowledge requires giving more than 100%, yes at times I am surprised when people claim they are spiritual because from 24 hours of their life they give 15 minutes to some pooja, ritual, while they carry on their day as usual... How can you assume that when to get expert in one small topic of a subject, one needs to spend years and years in taking education, then practicing it again day in and day out... one can become spiritual by that 15-30minutes!!

There must be something wrong in their definition of spirituality, their definition of love. I will not attempt defining the two here, because defining it will take years for me at present, and I may still miss something. I will use the traditional method of Neti-Neti to tell what love is not:

  • Love does not mean I close my eyes to negativities of other. If my mind tells me it is wrong, and I love other (even my Guru) I should tell without fear that 'Gurudev, I think this is not right'. A teacher (Guru) who rebukes you, or tells you to just believe it for now (you will learn later, you do not know have enough knowledge for it) is just making an excuse. 
  • Love does not mean I have to always obey, instead it means that I can go upto my Teacher (Guru) and say without fear 'Gurudev, I don't think I should do this'. The real Guru, will not ask me to do it unless I have full faith, full conviction in what I am doing.
  • Love does not mean I do not question my teacher (Guru), I can always go upto my teacher(Guru), and ask 'Gurudev, why so'
If we read our ancient stories with open eyes and mind, we will find they do speak of these things. Consider Bhagwat Geeta, it is but a discourse between a disciple (Arjuna) and his Guru (A guru is first a friend and then a Guru). Arjuna goes on asking question, doubting if what Krishna is asking him to do is right or not. And, Arjuna picks up Gandiv, only when all his logics, all his doubts against the war are shed.  Thanks to him, the world got Bhagwat Geeta, if he would have blindly followed him, we all would have missed such an important book.

Consider Ananda and Buddha, Ananda stayed with Buddha for complete 40 years, always questioning, asking to elaborate on what Buddha says something, and why of it. Thanks to him so many of Buddhas words are still available to us. Had he not questioned his Guru, we would have lost a treasure!!

The world is empty in nature, any intelligent mind, after attaining what he she desires from world, will also realize the emptiness of that desire. The intelligent mind can see that power, money, degrees do not remove sufferings, instead they are like carrots, given to fool us, keep us occupied, they are like veils to stop us from seeing the reality. The intelligent mind will question what is beyond this, and thus the thirst of spiritual knowledge will arise.

And to gain this spiritual knowledge we need a teacher, a live mentor who can tell us when we are right, when we are wrong... yes to gain that knowledge it is important that we love our teacher, our mentor, our Guru. But my Guru has to be someone who is like me (like a friend) and still know more than me... It is not necessary that I have only one Guru, we learn what we can from one Guru and can move towards the next step, just as I we do with classes...

And while many will ask me to tell how to dentify right Guru, right teacher... I cannot write it it, simply because what all can be written, can be translated to acting, and you have no means of knowing what is acting and what is real...

But, I will end by saying, become a right disciple, if you are lokking for Guru who can solve your stupid problems like winning a lottery, getting married, having kids etc, you are looking for wrong kind of people, and you will get a person who will exploit your attachment for these desires. But, then if you are intelligent enough, you will see getting these things is not the end. there is something more.

It is only when your search, your thirst is of something is more than what eyes can see, what ears can hear, what skin can feel, what your six senses can feel, that you will search for a real Guru. And when the disciple is ready, Guru will come...


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