The Guru principle is the eternally valid principle for the development of consciousness that leads the creation from unreality to reality, from the darkness of ignorance to the light of knowledge. In its purest form this cosmic principle manifests and reveals itself on earth as a divine incarnation or a spiritual Master.
The root of meditation is in the form of the Guru
The roots of worship are the Lotus Feet of the Guru.
The roots of the Mantra are the words of the Guru.
The root of liberation is the grace of the Guru.
GURUR SĀKSHĀT PARABRAHMA, TASMAI SRI GURUVE NAMAH
He is also Parabrahman, the Supreme Self
I bow before the Guru with the greatest adoration.
- To be born as a human.
- To be raised by loving and spiritual parents.
- To have a yearning for knowledge and truth.
- To meet a Realised Master.
And Srī Mahāprabhujī said in one Bhajan:
- Parents are the first Gurus. The influence and example of the parents, especially the mother, are of great importance in the continuing development of the child. Even during the growth of the baby in the womb the thoughts and feelings of the mother exert a strong influence on the child. It is important for the beneficial development of the child that it is conceived and raised by its parents in an environment full of love and harmony.
- Playmates and school friends are the second Guru. Character and habits are formed by the society that we predominantly keep. Because of its lack of moral values, bad company (Kusang) should be ignored as being a senseless and pernicious pastime that drags our consciousness down. But in good company (Satsang), with friends who are loving, wise and spiritual, our progress is supported. Remember that children are very easily influenced and imitate bad as well as good role models. Therefore we should be a good example for our children and, rather than just giving them lots of toys to play with, give them loving understanding, inspiration, love and wisdom.
- Third are our schoolteachers and Professors. They instruct us in Aparavidyā and help us acquire the knowledge and skills required for our profession and within society. If we utilise this knowledge correctly and pass it on to the next generation we have settled the “debt” that we as schoolchildren and students have towards our teachers.
- The fourth Guru is the religious teacher or priest who introduces us to the religious teachings and ceremonies of our culture. He instructs us in human Dharma, our duty towards family, community, our fellow humans, animals and nature. It is the Dharma of humans to be protectors and helpers, as well as to strive for knowledge and God-Realisation. Unfortunately nowadays only a few people fulfil this most important duty.
- The fifth Guru is the Satguru, the spiritual Master, who shows us our spiritual Dharma and transmits to us Paravidyā, spiritual knowledge. He teaches us the true religion and our connection to God (Sat Sanātan Dharma), which stands above all denominational differences. The spiritual teacher shows us the way to our real Self (Ātmā). He opens the door to liberation and God-Realisation for the disciple. In every religion and within all nations and cultures around the world we encounter the Master-Disciple principle. All the great teachers of humankind that we revere as divine incarnations also had a Guru, a Master. Rishi Sandīpa was the Master of Lord Krishna, Rishi Vasishtha was the Master of Lord Rāma, and Rāma was the Master of Hanuman. John the Baptist baptised Jesus Christ, and Jesus was called “Master” by his apostles.
- Ultimately, the sixth and final Guru is the inner Master that exists within each and every one of us. As the disciple attains mastery he becomes his own “Guru”, and also becomes capable of passing on the light of knowledge and wisdom to others.