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Guru Poornima is national wide festival which is dedicated towards the Guru. Guru word is used for the teacher whose knowledge and wisdom have en-lighten us in the journey of life. Guru can be a teacher, God, Parent, Saints who is enlightener or liberator, ego is erased, and doubts dispelled. The disciples can never attain such knowledge by his endeavor.
When is it observed ?
Traditionally the full moon day in the month of Ashadh is celebrated as Guru Poornima. It is also known to many as Vyas Poornima. The upcoming Guru Poornima festival falls on Saturday, July 12 2014. Guru Poornima is not only an important day for Hindus, but also for Buddhists and Jains too.
Meaning of Guru
In Sanskrit, the word Guru (गुरू) means a spiritual teacher. ; however it is also often used to refer to teachers of all kinds—be they teachers of music, ayurvedic medicine, cooking, etc. “Guru” as an adjective means “heavy or weighty” as in “one who is heavy with spiritual knowledge and wisdom.” Additionally, “guru” means servant; “guru” does not mean master.
Significance of Guru Poornima
Guru Ved Vyas has been considered as the biggest and the most knowledgeable Guru of all times. Guru Poornima or Vyasa Poornima is dedicated to Guru Ved Vyas and is celebrated as his birthday. He has taught us the real values and has helped us in differentiating the wrong from right. He edited the four Vedas, wrote the 18 Puranas, the Mahabharata and the Srimad Bhagavata. Vyas Muni taught Dattatreya too, who is regarded as the Guru of Gurus.
Role of a Guru
According to Indian belief, the Guru is the only guarantee for the individual to transcend the bondage of sorrow and death, and experience the Consciousness of the Reality
Qualities of a Guru
Bhagavadgita gives guidelines and qualities of a genuine Guru. A true Guru has credentials to impart true knowledge free from speculation and never claims he is god. He knows god is supreme and we are subordinate to him. He knows the truth and lives it, is free from lust, anger, and greed. He exemplifies wisdom, peacefulness, self-control, austerity, piety , tolerance and strong faith in God. He must be from a succession (eg.Brahma, Narada, Vyasa, Shankaracharya).
It’s very important to understand that an actual Guru never sees himself as the dominator or master of anyone. He never teaches that he has become God, or realized he is God, or tries to take the place of God in people’s lives.
A Guru is someone who is so filled with bhakti or love for the Supreme or Original Cause—and therefore love or compassion for all living beings who he understands are part and parcel of the Original Cause—that he sees himself as the servant of everyone and dedicates his life to helping everyone find true happiness.
Because he has realized the truth that happiness comes from rendering selfless service, he may accept the service of his students or disciples in order to teach them what he has learned from his own Guru. This is his service. The important thing to understand is that a real Guru finds his happiness in serving, not in being served.
At the time of deeksha (initiation), the Guru absorbs the past sins and karmas of his disciples and reveals true spiritual knowledge. The disciple develops strong love for the Guru who delivers him from the bondage of birth and death. Bhagavadgita shows that when Arjuna was confused about his duties, put his faith in Krishna, regarded him as his Guru – then Krishna showed him the right path. The Guru is a man of profound intellectual and spiritual sensitivity and compassion. The scriptures state that initiation must be taken from a Guru. On Guru Poornima day, we pray “Oh Guru, you are father, mother, brother, friend, knowledge and wealth. You are to me everything and god of all gods.
The Guru disciple relationship
From ancient times until today, the art and science of yoga and other knowledge and wisdom (gyan) has been handed down from Guru (teacher) to disciple (in Sanskrit shishya or chela). Disciples in turn hand down what they have learned to their disciples. Every Guru is also simultaneously a disciple not only of his immediate Guru, but also all the preceding Gurus in his line of teachers. In this way, the knowledge or wisdom (gyan) has been handed down to the generations for their betterment.
Acceptance of a guru or teacher is not undertaken lightly by the serious seeker of gyan. The serious seeker of gyan truth seeks out a Guru or teacher, understands and considers what the Guru is teaching, checks the Guru’s teachings against the vedic scriptures, and against what the previous teachers have taught. The bona fide Guru will themselves have been a disciple of a Guru. Additionally, the serious aspirant looks to see whether the students and disciples of the Guru are manifesting the fruits of the true knowledge. In other words, the gyan aspirant should not blindly accept anyone as Guru; rather they must seek confirmation that the Guru is in fact bona fide.
In the ancient Hindu culture and tradition, the guru-disciple relationship is considered to be natural and necessary; similarly a person without a Guru is considered to be like a boat without a rudder.
How to observe Guru Purnima ?
All aspirants awake at Brahma muhurta (early in the morning) and chant prayers to respect their Guru, worship Guru’s Feet, keep fast & do prayer whole day.
Floral offerings and symbolic gifts are given to honor the cosmic Satguru Ved Vyasa.
Guru Gita mentions :
पूजामूलं गुरुर्पदम् ।
मोक्षमूलं गुरूर्कृपा ॥
Dhyaana moolam guror murtih;
Pooja moolam guror padam;
Mantra moolam guror vakyam;
Moksha moolam guror kripa
The Guru‘s form should be meditated upon; the feet of the Guru should be worshipped; his words are to be treated as a sacred Mantra; his grace ensures final liberation
Celebration of Guru Poornima is about devotion, respect, appreciation and salutation towards to Guru/Teacher. Gurus formed the axis of educational system and society, and enriched various fields of learning and culture by their creative thinking.
Guru Poornima is one of the major celebrations in Shirdi by special worship Guru Puja of Sai Baba. It is the sole festival Sri Sai Baba enjoined on his devotees. Lakhs of people throng in Shirdi on Guru Poornima day to get the blessings of Sai Baba.
Guru Mool Mantra
गुरूर्ब्रह्मा गुरूर्विष्णु र्गुरूदेवो महेश्वरः।
गुरुः साक्षात परं ब्रह्म तस्मै श्री गुरवे नमः॥
Gururbrahmaa Gururvishnuh Gururdevo Maheswarah |
Guruh-Saakshaat Parabrahma Tasmai Shrigurave Namah ||
The Guru is Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh (Shiva), veneration to the Guru who is Parabrahma manifest who gives spiritual guidance illuminating the path of the soul through darkness into light.
Listen to the Guru Mool Mantra here .