Of Reel and Real Gurus

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In a movie, a don is seen wearing a black suit, dark glasses, he has a lean frame and is surrounded by commandos, again in black suits, he travels in black cars…it is a stereotype. Similarly, in a movie, a Guru is seen with a long beard, flowing hair, fancy robes, the followers dance around him/her and even he/she is seen dancing and singing. That is a stereotype, make-believe, a movie…fiction.

In real life, dons do not look like this, nor do the Gurus. If you take a look at the pictures of Shri Ram Krishan Paramhans or Ramana Maharishi, you will find that they looked nowhere close to the portrait sketched above – they neither had a long beard nor long flowing hair or fancy robes and never were they seen singing, dancing or jumping around.

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Gurus are not what you see in movies, Gurus have an aura, a glow about them which is visible even to a naked eye. Gurus have vaakshakti, that is, what they say happens. They have mantra-siddhi, that is, when they chant the vibrations and energy can be felt by all present. They have strong and vibrant bodies which exude glow and they are non commercial, they do not charge for imparting yog. They don’t give you upays or stones to wear to ward off your problems. They do not ask you to perform rites and rituals to fill their treasuries; in fact, they do not have treasuries, as ‘hoarding’ or ‘parigraha’ is antagonistic to the very basics of yog. Satya, asteya and aparigraha are the first three yams in Ashtang Yog, the basic siddhis of yog stem from following these. If someone is building palatial ashrams or acquiring wealth in the name of yog, or following a multi-level marketing system to collect more and more members for the organization, then you can be sure that he/she is not a yogi or Guru, he might look like a stereotype Guru from a movie but actually he/she is a normal person who, seeing opportunity in the problems of people, has started a business of offering innovative solutions and totkas which he/she calls as yog, which ofcourse don’t work. He/she functions on the principle of probability.

Unfortunately, in our country, while there exist laws to protect commercial undertakings through copyrights, trademark and geographical indicators, there exist no laws to protect yog from commerce, which is why anyone can add the prefix Yogi or Guru or Baba (at times even names of god) against their name, grow a beard and adorn a fancy robe and make a fool out of people. People come in their influence because that is the stereotype image they have of Guru…that’s what they have seen in movies. You remember seeing the movies made on so-called Gurus? Obviously you cannot see a real Guru and his glow in a movie, for Gurus are real…movies are unreal. An actor, after a hundred retakes, delivers that perfect smile on the screen, which woos the crowds. Movies are for entertainment, Gurus are for evolution. It is foolish to take reel for real and run after the stereotypes straight out of a movie in real life and take them to be a Guru. Just like you do not arrest a man wearing black suit or dark glasses and put him behind bars thinking he is a don. He is not a don, he is simply a man who liked the character in a movie and imitated him. Similarly, a person cannot be called a Guru just because he caught onto the idea from a movie and sported a flowing robe or long beard. We choose and want to live in unreality because the real scares us and makes us insecure. That is why we go to certain Gurus for getting our desires (unreal) fulfilled, knowing very well that they will fail us one day. Hardly anyone embarks on the journey of reality. This happens for two reasons – one we’re afraid that the reality will take us away from our artificial world and all  our fun will also go and second, there’s no one to tell us with conviction about the real world. So we believe the unreal to be real.

Viparyayoh mithyaa gyaanam atadroop pratishtham

Look for a Guru, the traits of a Guru, for only a Guru can take you from the unreal to real, from darkness to light.

Asato maa sadgamaya, tamaso maa jyotir gamaya, mrityor maa amritam gamaya

When you meet your Guru experiences of the spiritual world will follow, your body form will change, you will radiate the glow which he/she radiates and finally one day you will become like him/her.

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