Guru Puja

Posted By: Tapas Dev Tag: Scriptures Last Update: 05/08/2018
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Yesterday I spoke regarding the seven secrets of success as were told to Párvatii by Shiva. One of the secrets was “Gurupújanam.” I said that “pújanam” means the endeavour to acquire the attributional stance of Guru. And, regarding the import of the term, Guru, I said that “gu” means “darkness”, the spiritual darkness, the micropsychic darkness, and “ru” means “dispelling personality”. So Guru means “the personality who dispels darkness from the minds of spiritual aspirants”.

What is the meaning of the incantation that is used in Guru Púja? In that incantation the first line is “Akhańd́a mańd́alákáraḿ vyáptaḿ yena carácaraḿ.” I told you in Ánanda Sútram, “Brahmaeva Gurureka náparah”. The secrets of Brahma, His macropsychic and cognitive secrets, are known only to Him, and unless and until He expresses Himself through some physical form, how can His secrets be known to others? And that is why it is said, “Brahmaeva Gurureka náparah”. That is, Brahma Himself is the Guru. There cannot be any second Guru. His secret is known to Him only, and He expresses Himself through a framework, a form. Now generally people say that the form is Guru, but the form is not Guru, Guru is expressing Himself through that form.

As I have already told you, the expressed universe, this quinquelemental expression of this universe, is very big, but it is not infinite. While creating this universe of ours static Prakrti, the static attribution of Prakrti, had to be used and will be used. Because of the static attributions it cannot be infinite. Certainly there will be bondage because bringing something under bondage is the wont of static Prakrti. Further, because of its shape being to some extent elliptical, it is called “Brahmáńd́a” in Saḿskrta. “Ańd́a” means “oval-shaped”. “Brahma” + “Ańd́a” = “Brahmańd́a”, that is, “the elliptical expression of the Cosmic Entity”. It is the partless expression of Parama Puruśa, which is “Mańd́alákáram”. Parama Puruśa has this type of quinquelemental expression, the universe, and is all-pervasive in nature. Parama Puruśa is all-pervading. For this the English is “pervasive”, the Saḿskrta root verb is “vis” and that is why this all-pervading Entity is also known as “Viśńu”. “Viśńu” means all-pervasive.

“Tadpadaḿ darshitaḿ yena tasmae Shrii Gurave namah.” You also know that this all-pervasive Entity, this Viśńu, remains untouched by the microcosm. Microcosms cannot come into contact with this Entity without the help of Guru, who is the link between jiiva and Shiva. This link is also a part of Shiva, that is to say, Shiva is Guru. “Tadpadaḿ darshitaḿ” – this link, actually or noumenally, is Parama Puruśa, is Táraka Brahma. It is He who is to be followed. “Tasmae Shrii Gurave namah” means, “I surrender myself at your altar”.

“Ajiṋánatimirándhasya jiṋánáiṋjana shalákayá.” You know that an eye ointment is applied with a stick (“Shaláká” means stick). Now, all the microcosms are parts of that Noumenal Entity, all are actually parts and particles of that Supreme Entity, but due to ignorance, due to the darkness of ignorance, they cannot see what is what and which is which. That is why they require the ointment of spiritual knowledge. Guru (with a stick) applies the ointment of spiritual knowledge to their eyes.

Cakśurunmilitaḿ yena tasmae Shrii Gurave namah.

After the ointment of spiritual knowledge has been applied the eyes are opened. Then, “tasmae Shrii Gurave namah”: I surrender myself at your altar. Namah means to “surrender”. Namah refers to the process called “Namo mudrá”. It means that all my expressions, all my dexterities, which are expressed through my ten fingers, have been brought to a point. That is, I surrender along with all my capabilities, all my dexterities.

Gurur Brahmá, Gurur Viśńu, Gurur Devo Maheshvara.

“Gurur Brahmá”. What is Brahmá? There are three main functional expressions of Parama Puruśa. He is the Supreme Progenitor, all are His progeny; as the Creator He creates everything; as the Guardian He retains and nourishes everything. Every thing is in the environment of His creation. When He withdraws everything within the Nucleus of His existence then everything becomes one with Him. As Generator, as Operator, as Destroyer, He is GOD. The word “God” is made by taking the first letters of three terms.

Now, you know that whenever anything is done, a vibration is created. Whenever any vibrational action is done there must be sound, there must be light, and there must be other differential expressions. During the phase of creation, when He creates, the sound “a” is created. When He retains and nourishes the sound “u” is created. When He takes back everything the sound “ma” is created. So, “Aum” represents all the expressions of the Supreme Entity.

Therefore it is said in the Tripáda Vibhuti Náráyańa Shruti, “Prańavátmakaḿ Brahmá”. Aum is called “Prańava”. Now, when He creates, the sound “a” is created, so “Brahma” + “a” is “Brahmá” – “Gurur Brahmá”, the creative faculty of Brahma.

“Gurur Viśńu”. Already I told you that Viśńu means the “all-pervading”. He pervades with the help of Viśńu Máyá (Special Operative Principle).

“Gurur Devo Maheshvara.” What is deva? “Dyotate kridate yasmád udyate dyotate divi. Tasmád deva iti prokta iti sarva devatah.” All those vibrations, all those expressions, all the actional manifestations which vibrate the entire creation, leading it in the direction of the goal from electronic imperfection to nuclear perfection, are called “deva”. All the actional manifestations of the Supreme Entity are “deva” – there are many devas. But amongst them the Supreme Deva is the Supreme Entity and the minor expressions of those actional manifestations are called “devatás”. That is, the devatás are being controlled and supervised by the devas.

Among the Devas, the greatest is Mahádeva, the deva that controls all actional manifestations. Mahádeva controls all actional manifestations within and without the microcosm and Macrocosm. You may say that everything is within Macrocosm. But “without Macrocosm” means that portion of Macrocosm, that portion of the Supreme Entity, that remains unmetamorphosed, that has not undergone metamorphosis. He is called Maheshvara or Mahádeva.

Maheshvara is He who has the power, the right and stamina to control the expressions of devatás and devas; that is, the withdrawing power is His. Whenever He withdraws anything from this world, we cry aloud, saying and thinking that that particular entity has died. But He has simply withdrawn the actional manifestations of so many devas and devatás. That’s why He is Maheshvara. And regarding Him it has been said:

Tava tattvaḿ na jánámi kiidrsho’si Maheshvara,
Yádrsho’si Mahádeva Tádrsháya namo namah.


“O Maheshvara, we do not know what You are like or how you withdraw all the actional manifestations of so many devas and devatás. You have the existential faculty, the faculty of existing. And for that existential faculty we offer our namaskara. Your existential faculty is of some type – what type we do not know – but to that type we offer our namaskara.”

“Gurureva Parama Brahma.” The expressed side of Brahma is called “apara”, and the witnessing side is called“para”. When “para” becomes the witnessed side, the witnessing side becomes “parápara” – para for the para. Now, the Supreme Para, the Para of all paras, is “Parama”. That Guru, that expression of Parama Brahma that dispels all your spiritual darkness is Parama Brahma. That is, Parama Brahma exhibits Himself in the form of Guru just to dispel your clouds of ignorance and spiritual slumber. “Tasmae Shrii Gurave namah” – “to that Guru I offer my Prańáma.”

A.V. Part-03, 4 October 1978, Patna