Friday, October 17, 2008

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 6 (of Vol 3) Dated 17 Oct 2008

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 6 (of Vol 3) Dated 17 Oct 2008

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by Periyavaal of Kanchi Kamakoti peetam, over a period of some sixty years while he was the pontiff in the earlier part of last century. These have been published in Tamil by Vanadi Padippagam, Chennai, in seven volumes of a thousand pages each, as Deivathin Kural. To day we are proceeding from the last para of page number 25, of Vol 3, of the Tamil original. )
(Note:- All these Deivathin Kural e-mails are available in ‘’, which is being updated every time this e-mail is sent. )
10. The word 'Guru' means heavy or big. We prefix the word Guru to someone's name, who is great and respectable. In Tamil, we refer to people of respectability, as 'Ganavaan' or 'Mahaganam'. May be that the word, 'Magnum' is derived from 'Mahaganam'! Similarly, Brhmam, Mahan or Mahatma also means something big. What is this big about? Is it the size or weight? Big in what?
11. You people refer to me also as, Periyaval and Guru. You cannot be thinking of me as big in height, weight and size. The reference is mainly to experience, knowledge, refinement and grace. In my case however, whether I have any of these qualities or not, that I am called Jagat Guru Sankaracharya, carrying the name of Adi Sankara Bhagawat Paaadaal, is good enough qualification.
12. An Acharya has to be inherently very well endowed with admirable qualities of kindness, compassion, love, humaneness and knowledge refined constantly by experience. Very learned, he has to have high moral standards and instructional ability. His character should be one of truly impeccable behaviour with very sincere and faultless attitude. He should be someone who practices what he preaches. He should be such a role model, capable of influencing and motivating others to emulate him, despite the apparent hurdles. He should be a charismatic leader able to evoke the best in the student.
13. In the case of a Guru, there is no qualification required of Him. He may or may not be well read. He need not be an expert, erudite scholar. He need not be an authority in the Saastraa-s. He may not adhere to any Sampradaaya. He does not have to practice and or preach. He does not have to be a role model to be emulated! Let alone preach, he does not have to open his mouth even! There have been 'Mouna Guru-s' who remained silent forever.
14. That person wholly immersed in himself may be seated in some odd corner of the world, all by himself, uncaring for his self and the world. But there will be someone who will come around the corner and recognize the greatness in this person and accept him as his Guru. He does not have to impart any 'Upadesa' or Instructions. He may not have even thought of the person who has come to him as a 'Sishya'. But the purpose for which the one who arrived later is fulfilled. By word of mouth the Guru's name and fame spreads! (KTSV adds:- When Ramana reached Thiruvannamalai, he was a strapping youth of 17. He had thrown away all his belongings enroute. The first few years often found him in a state totally unaware of the body and the world. Unwashed, unkempt and uncared for, he was entirely lost to this world! He used to be sitting in the underground 'Paadaala Lingam', where ants and insects used to feed on his body! It was Seshadri Swami, who recognized the greatness of Ramana. It was he who saved him from pestering urchins who used to throw stones. He used to bathe, dress the wounds/injuries and feed the body of Ramana, who was later known to the world as Ramana Maharishi the Sat Guru!)
15. There have been many a Guru, who had no formal education whatsoever. They never taught anything to anybody. The earliest known Guru is Dakshinamurthi whose medium of instruction was silence! Not bounden by any rules and regulations of Society or Saastra-s, their have been Guru-s who used to roam around like a mad, ghost like specter of no known caste or creed or origin! They eight directions of space was their clothing. They used to be known as 'digambara swamiyar'. Dattatreya was one such Avadoota Guru, held in very high esteem!
16. Acharya on the other hand is a very systematic person. He has to be the representative of some traditional Sampradaya. He should be well read and knowledgeable about all the principles and concepts of that tradition. He should have learnt all the books of that Sampradaya systematically. That he should be teaching very methodically to his students. Above all he should be a living example of what he teaches.
17. That does not mean however that a Guru is necessarily a unsystematic person. It only means that he is not an easily understandable person. He is under no compulsion that he should be within definable parameters of behaviour. He is a man of inner maturity. He has risen above character, conduct and such recognizable qualifications. Will you think of yourself capable of assessing God's conduct against any standards? Similarly once someone is accepted as the Guru, you do not assess Him or Her anymore! They are through to the ultimate, in direct communication with the Parabrhmam / Bhagwan with no sense of differentiation. From a person with a mind of his own, they would have evolved through a state of mind that has subsided, to no-mind! That is 'Mano-laya' to 'Mano Naasa'.
18. Those who are like this inwardly, may have been outwardly shining with much erudition and Saastra Gnaana, teaching their students, living by and practicing what they preach. Adi Sankara Bhagawat Paadaal, Srimad Ramanujacharyar and Madhvacharyar; have been such Guru and Acharyal rolled in to one!
19. Even if not reached a state of 'Atma Saatchatkaaram', that is realized their oneness with God, mostly the Acharya-s were almost in a state of great inner maturity. It is this greatness that caused them to be identified as Guru and to go and live with them for learning, to be known as, 'Guru Kula Vaasam'. Though not within the parameters of any already existing system, there have been many pioneers who marked a path of their own, as founders and creators of a fresh approach to the same destination, combining the characteristics of Guru and Acharya in themselves. (KTSV adds:- Adi Sankara, Ramanujacharyar and Madhvacharyar were such Guru cum Acharya-s. So were Gautama Buddha, Guru Nanak, Mahavir, Jesus Christ of the Christians and Allah of the Muslims too; were Guru and Acharya rolled in to one!)
(To be continued.)


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