Until 2 days ago I had no idea that there was such a thing as Guru Purnima. Well, to be perfectly honest I don't really know anything except that it is a day to honor and pay homage to your guru. It's celebrated on the full moon in July. I'm always looking for a reason to have a celebration so honoring the guru is just as good as any. I know I'm a day late but what the hell...... Let's celebrate the Guru!!
I'm always lamenting about not having an "official" guru so I was surprised when I first read about Guru Purnima that I knew exactly who I wanted to acknowledge. In reality (okay well in the maya that I refer to as my reality) I have been blessed with an abundance of gurus.
Many teachers have crossed my path over the years. Each one planting a few seeds. Some seeds were clearly marked while others were planted and I didn't know what the seed was until it bloomed. Some teachers planted seeds while others help me recognize the weeds from the flowers. Some plow the soil along side of me while others give guidance from a distance. All equally valuable to my spiritual growth.
A wise friend said today "There are yoga teachers and there are yogis" The teachers who have impacted my life the most are those who are living yoga. They are the true yogis. The teachers who I want to be like are those who ARE yoga. They teach just as much by their example as they do by their words. Anyone can teach you asana but a true teacher inspires you to be a yogi. A true teacher ignites that inner fire and continues to stoke it. That inner fire being our desire for self-realization. The desire to connect our inner guru with the cosmic guru.
Last night, I went to a special Guru Purnima program. We were paying homage to Paramahansa Yogananda. It was a lovely program in which we chanted, meditated and heard some readings by Sri Daya Mata. I believe she was the president of the Self Realization Fellowship organization until she passed a couple of years ago. I'd like to share a part of one of those readings with you here.
"Sometimes devotees have the expectation that, because they have been drawn to a God-united guru, their path will be smooth and free of difficulties, and the blissful realization of God will come easily. The guru does indeed remove many karmic obstacles from our lives, but because his goal is to transform our whole being, he also seeks to motivate us to stretch our capacities -- to draw out fully the faith, understanding and spiritual strength of with we are capable."
In order for a seed to sprout forward a beautiful flower it needs to crack open first. There's no mistaking that the cracking open part is difficult but the result is always beautiful. Today and always I feel eternally grateful for the teachers who have guided me lovingly and sometimes sternly. It is through their guidance and support that I have been able to let my heart and mind crack open so that spiritual growth can blossom!
Om Shri Gurubhyo Namaha Hari Om.......