Community on Yoga, Meditation, Ayurveda and Spirituality
‘Guru-The Guiding Light’
“To light a candle one needs another burning candle; in the same way those who are unenlightened need the help of an illumined guru.”
The Sanskrit word guru means ’remover of darkness and ignorance’. It is a negative term in that it does not say that the guru gives you anything, only that he removes something. He removes the mental blocks and obstacles that prevent the spontaneous effulgence of the light of truth. The guru’s role is to remove the veil, the ignorance, the preconceived ideas and mental conditioning that prevent the already existing light from shining through.
The means adopted by the guru varies greatly. It can be by personal instruction, by inspiring his followers, by rebuking his disciples for actions which are not in accordance with their nature and by guiding disciples so that their action are appropriate to their own physical and mental make-up. But whatever the method used, the aim is the same: higher awareness.
The Guru is an essential part of life. His role is the essence of all mystical systems. This essence is the light of the guru. It is he who opens the disciple’s eyes to the impossible.
There is a special day in India, the day of the full moon in the month of Ashadha (July), which is traditionally called ‘Guru Poornima’. On this day disciples pay homage to the guru, whether mentally from a distance or by their physical presence. At the same time the guru remembers his own guru.
In a personal relationship between a guru and a disciple, the guru by virtue of his higher awareness can clearly see the mental blocks that the disciple himself cannot see. He takes steps to help the disciple remove them, by any means that are suitable and justified. The guru supplies the strength, which makes progress possible in spiritual life, and the divine love, which makes it so rewarding and joyful.
The guru's individuality as a human being is just one tiny aspect of his being. His personality is a perfect and pure instrument of the infinite, though which unlimited power flows unceasingly to the world around him.
“Life is as fickle as water dripping from the lotus leaf. The world is devoured by disease and egoism. Everything is drowned in sorrow. Remember this well!” --- Adi Guru Shankaracharya.
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There are many different paths of Yoga. The various paths of yoga lead to the same point or source. All the paths of Yoga incorporate the same aim: Physical Health, Mental Peace and Higher Awareness.
The many variations of Yoga can broadly classified into five basic paths:
1-Hatha Yoga=The path of Balancing the Mental, Physical and Subtle (Pranic or bioplasmic) forces of the body. 2-Raja Yoga = the path of Introspection.
3-Bhakti Yoga= the path of Devotion.