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I found my another guru

Published:Mar 7, 2021

My life has been a journey of Nothing, both literally and philosophically. When I was very young and reading in school, there used to be a voice that used to to guide me, tell me words of wisdom. We all know this as the inner voice or the voice of inner conscience, but I used to interact with the voice by calling him Sir like I would call my school teachers. But the problem was I was not a sincere disciple.

I remember He always used to ask me to give him only two days of full discipline and dedication and he would transform my life for the better. But forget two days, I could not even give him two hours of dedication or discipline due to my fickle mind. But anyway that inner guide of mine stayed with me for may be couple of years before I could not hear his voice anymore, until I could many many years after. That inner voice I consider as my first Guru who later on in my life also helped me to attain self realization and the knowledge of Shunyata.

The problem however with such an inner voice as a Guru is that you can easily supress, ignore or undermine its messages thinking it only to be your own inner conscience that is talking and interacting with it would trigger the feeling of you talking to yourself like a mad man. So driven by this feeling I had actually never accepted or even considered that it also could be a guru of mine until later in my life when I realized the importance of this inner voice by the means of the following Gita verses:

तेषां सततयुक्तानां भजतां प्रीतिपूर्वकम् । ददामि बुद्धियोगं तं येन मामुपयान्ति ते ॥ १० ॥ तेषामेवानुकम्पार्थमहमज्ञानजं तम: । नाशयाम्यात्मभावस्थो ज्ञानदीपेन भास्वता ॥ ११ ॥

The above verses of Chapter 10 from Bhagvad Gita basically say how the Lord Himself gives knowledge and destroys ignorance by residing within the heart of the sincere devotee. So every sincere seeker and devotee gets the benefit of the inner voice through which the Lord Himself guides him. But until this knowledge came to me, undermining this first guru of mine I was in search of a physically available guru and willingly or unwillingly made many formal and informal gurus in the course of my journey until I attained realization in the year of 2012.

After my realization and attaining the knowledge of Shunyata I did not make any guru or even wanted or needed any guru for the sake of attaining knowledge as that want had been fulfilled by the grace of the Lord. However, I still wanted to have gurus for Yoga, Meditation, etc. although I knew that I did not need to practice or attain any knowledge on those fields as whatever was to be gained through any spiritual practices for the sake of redeeming oneself from this human birth was already available to me by the grace of the Lord. So I did not make much effort in this regard, but subtly there was in my mind a desire present to find someone whom I can look up to and whom I can admire and accept as my guru.

Having invested many years of my life in spiritual pursuit and exploring the spiritual domain I had come to see that may be 95% of the so called gurus, babas, etc. that are available to us through TV channels, YouTubes etc. are insincere and immature. They are not the ones I could look up to or even listen to. There is certainly no need for the student of a PG class to listen to the so called teachers of grammar who do not even know proper grammar themselves. So this subtle desire of mine had remained unfulfilled for quite some years after I had entered the family life and engaged myself in responsibilities of my family.

But God’s grace is not too far when the time is right. So after may be 5 or 6 years today I found a person whom I can lookup to and accept as my role model and even a guru. At this point you might be thinking he might be some baba, sadhu or guru, but he is only a common man living a common life. You certainly know him and heard his name, but I did not know him except his name because the time when he was in lime light and over the media for his work, I was living a renunciate life without watching any TV or news. So it is only recently that I heard his name again when he offered to be the face of Kerla chief minister by joining politics. Now you know who I am talking about, yes, Dr. E. Sreedharan, commonly known as the Metro Man.

When I first came across the news, since I did not know much about him or his work except that he was some guy who worked on creating Delhi metro, my initial impression was here is another over ambitious man in the pursuit of more worldly titles to his name. So I did not bother much to know more details like why he wants to be the CM or what are his views, etc. However, I cam across the following old video in YouTube yesterday and thought of listening to it as a matter of curiosity.

Whatever 4 pillars of his success as a project manager or director of the organisation he mentioned was certainly a form of mantra passed down to the listeners as a gist of his professional experience. Undoubtedly all efficient and productive managers and leaders know and practice these things to various extent, but the fifth factor that he told won my heart.

In today’s world spirituality even though is in hype due to it being sold in various packages by various sellers, true spiritual persons are certainly rare and few. I myself being a spiritual person inside know and value spiritual principles although my outward life may seem mostly as materialistic. So knowing that he draw his inspiration and values from Bhagavad Gita made me very happy. Then I found another video of him where he narrates the verses of Gita that had not only inspired and motivated him, but are the ones which he put to practice in his daily life.

I myself having been through Gita many times in my life since childhood, know all the verses he mentioned and even could guess what verses he would be mentioning, but hardly I had known anyone to actually put into practice instead of just preaching it. Knowing that he put into practice those verses I could know he is certainly a true Karmayogi, not a man desirous of worldly titles. I guess he certainly knows when you do your work and duty dedicatedly and responsibly, worldly titles can keep coming and going even though the titles are never the goals.

In my life I had made attainment of God as the foremost objective giving less value to worldly work. I had always though very high of renouncing the worldly work and becoming a monk. I valued spiritual practices higher than worldly work and general profession. So in my mind I had decided to be a kind of monk (sannyasa) instead of becoming a karmayogi. But that delusion had went off from my mind after my spiritual realization when I could know that neither work nor no work is a hindrance in the path of a spiritual person. An enlightened person may or may not involve himself in worldly work depending upon the need and his or her personal choice. However, the subtle difference still stayed in my mind between a karmayogi and a sannyasi where I thought the sannyasi owing to his spiritual practices and steadfast knowledge would gain a position higher after death than a worldly karmayogi person would do who doesn’t know the spiritual practices of meditation, yoga, tantra, mantra, etc. and who doesn’t have knowledge of the Self.

Any spiritually knowledgeable person may easily point out the fallacy in the subtle difference that I had in my mind, but it was not going to be pointed out to me since I did not have any guide or guru who instructs me and clears my doubts except for my inner guru that I had previously mentioned. So after coming across such a personality as Dr. Shreedharan, even though I was happy to know such karmayogis exist, I knew in my mind that he is just another jiva fulfilling his destiny. I was wondering if after such a life of dedicated worldly work whether he would attain any spiritual good. This wondering in my mind was due to the subtle difference that I had between a sannyasi and a karmayogi. But since this was a fallacy in my thought that needed to be cleared out, my inner guru gladly stepped in and reminded me the following verses:

सां‍ख्ययोगौ पृथग्बाला: प्रवदन्ति न पण्डिता: । एकमप्यास्थित: सम्यगुभयोर्विन्दते फलम् ॥ ४ ॥

यत्सां‍ख्यै: प्राप्यते स्थानं तद्योगैरपि गम्यते । एकं सां‍ख्यं च योगं च य: पश्यति स पश्यति ॥ ५ ॥

You see, may things in life you might already know, but the real essence of it may not be realized until a proper example or instance is found. Many Gita verses in in my life I have come to understood from practical examples and personal life experiences rather than simply reading it. So these two verses now make sense to me as they have been cleared to me after coming across the example of Dr. Shreedharan.

I had practiced Bhakti Yoga and was fortunate enough to come across a good guru in the path of Bhakti. Gyana Yoga I got as a result of practising Bhakti through the grace of the Lord and help of my inner guru. Dhyana Yoga (or Kriya Yoga) I wanted to practice, but had no strong desire for it after attaining knowledge so do not know whether or not I will be pursing it even though I had made guru in this path about 6 years ago and completely got cut off from the practice after only the first initiation class due to my marriage later in the month. Now karmayoga is something I never waned or thought of practicing as I have been totally uninterested in worldly work. But of all the yogas, karmayoga is the most important one as irrespective of what yoga you follow or practice karmayoga is compulsory in this world for a spiritual aspirant. Now after coming across the personality of Dr. Shreedharan I can say I am inspired to practice karmayoga and hence I treat him as my guru with regard to karmayoga.

Even though there may be many such personalities in this world who are karmayogis whether they know it or not, for few reasons I started liking and admiring the personality of Dr. Shreedharan.

  1. Spiritually rooted
  2. Did not preach, but practised
  3. Exemplary career and illustrious work
  4. Did not retire or take sannyasa
  5. Even at 88 years of age, while many are either dead or sick, he decided to enter politics( a tedious but most effective public service profession) for serving the society.

My idea has always been of ceasing worldly actions as soon as possible in my life and retiring so that I could live a lonely life of peace as my heart has become empty of desires. Even though at the core of my heart everyday I think only of spiritually serving the people, I do now want it in a strong way. My idea has been of completely ceasing of any worldly actions, even the actions of helping or serving others. This has been mainly because of the subtle difference I had in my mind for the sannyasis and the _karmayogi_s where I valued sannyasis more thinking that _karmayogi_s are people who are simply under the influence of maya. But now that my doubt has been cleared I am thinking of not running away from worldly actions. In fact this very post on my website is the result of my changed attitude. I would not normally write or post about my feelings as I think very lowly and humble of myself when the world is being flooded by countless opinion and ideas. But it’s mostly because I am simply not interested in any worldly work except of my profession. But since I have got some new insights and inspiration, I will be now posting my views, thoughts and opinion just for the sake of doing it as a karmayogi without any expectations as I know that’s the right thing to do do when that’s what I was born for.

Without having a guru or a role model it is too easy to divert your ways in life. When you have a guru or a role model it becomes easy for you to structure your life as you have some clean objective, you known in which direction to move. Having come across such a personality like Dr. Shreedharn I am very happy to know such role models do exist in our country. I wish I had came across him earlier, but then, every thing happens in its own right course of time. From now on I would engage more in my work of writing and preaching and will practice karmayoga till the end of this body instead of retiring to my abode of loneliness. For it is not me who is the doer, it is He who is doing the deed.

कार्यं करोमि नचकिंचित अहं करोमि

As I write this I also remember how I also liked doers to be better than the renunciates who only spend away their lives living for themselves without doing anything of much worth in life. That is the reason I did not take full time sannyasa and did not want to be a monk. So at this stage of life and time of this country of Bharat, we need more _karmayogi_s than _samkhyayogi_s. Since eventually both are but the same, work is certainly better than renunciation. There will always be problems to solve, there will always be things to be done, one life after another, one person after another, let the mortal bodies be engaged in useful action instead of in the pursuit of worldly name, fame and wealth. Let never inaction be thy goal. For work is better than inaction.