A View of Santhigiri Ashram

A View of Santhigiri Ashram
Lotus Parnasala and Sahakarana Mandiram , Santhigiri Ashram, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Spiritual Experience - Urmila G

Guru Charanam Saranam

Indelible Marks of Experience
Urmila G, Tallassery

We are witness to the gradual decay and degeneration of well known families which have family temples and family deities. Is there any relationship between the concept of God, way of worship and the ups and downs in life? I don’t know whether we have honestly studied or inquired to find this out. Several studies had been done to analyze the cause and effect of social and cultural disintegration of this country which once enjoyed unparalleled supremacy in the areas of knowledge, education and wealth. Scholars and social reformers assign caste and age-old family traditions as the reason behind the decay of socio-economic and political system and progress. They do not probe into the other dimensions of this phenomenon.

But Guru through his own experience revealed that it was the pattern of faith and the way of worship contrary to the age which played an important role in the disintegration of families social order. Guru, not only stated this untold truth but also fulfilled the Will of Brahmam by restoring Yugadharma. Nobody ever knew that the decay and disintegration of families have been caused by a wrong worship and faith inappropriate to the Dharma of the Age. Families thus degenerated are aplenty in our society. Mavanal in Thottapally is one such old family, which had from wealth, fallen to the depths of penury. It was in this house that Guru had first performed Guru Pooja outside the Ashram. Neither members of the family nor the spectators did not realize it even in imagination, as the exalted action which would become the foundation of spiritual and social renaissance of the world. Smt. Urmila G, a teacher, now residing at Talassery, is a member of this family and has been a follower of Guru since. Here, she shares her experience, with the prayer that it may become a pointer to the world at large.

Q: Teacher, It is 34 years since you have met Guru. How did you come to know about Guru?

A: At that time we were going here and there consulting astrologers to find a way out for the ills at home.

Q: What did Astrologers have to say about your family problems?

A: Ours was a big old household with boundary walls, family temple, pond and family deities which were worshipped as per tradition. It was in our generation that the family had begun to degenerate. The astrologers pointed out that there was the problem of family deities and ancestral souls, and that they should be housed in a freshly built temple. We had identified the place to build the temple. But at a time when we were struggling for livelihood, it was not practical. Similarly, necessary material had been unloaded to renovate the house. But nothing could be done. From the astrological readings, it was seen that nothing would be possible until the relocation of the deities.

Q: How did you meet Guru?

A: My mother visited a Muslim lady soothsayer, who she thought, could advise a way out from our difficulties. On her way back, she paid a visit to the house of Sri K.P. Vaidyar, our family friend. It was he who told her about Guru. When he listened to our difficulties, Vaidyar said, ‘A Swami will come here. Just tell him and see.’ He was talking about Guru.

The moment she saw Guru, she felt that this was the place where all her difficulties could be relieved. She experienced an unexplainable relief too. Guru affectionately enquired with mother about the matters at home. Mother told Guru the entire story.

Guru asked if there were people in her family who were capable to build the temple and move the deities.

Mother informed Guru that they had no faith in these things though they had no big financial difficulties as hers.

Guru said that he was not in a position to do anything at that time. Six months had to pass.

Q: What was the reason for Guru to say that?

A: It was a period connected to the completion of Guru’s spiritual phase. During that time, Guru was not to intercede spiritually. This was in line with the ‘instructions’ from the Light of Brahman. When after six months Guru came to Vaidyar’s house, mother went and saw Guru. ‘Determining a day, all people in the family should be called. Also arrange for a good astrologer’, Guru informed. Immediately we invited the famous astrologer of Central Travancore, Sri Pallana Kochu Keshavan, and informed him all matters.

Q: What was the response of the Astrologer?

A: When he heard that these deities and ancestral souls could be removed just with ‘sankalpam’ (mental resolve) without any rituals, he said, ‘We are viewing this scientifically. No individual, let him be any great saint, through his divine power and meditation, the purifying karma cannot be performed. Rituals like ‘Homa‘ etc. are essential. If the deities observed in the chart were seen relocated by ‘sankalpam’ then only it can be believed’, he added.

On the appointed day, Guru reached our house around 10’ in the morning. We had no knowledge as to how to receive Guru. There were, along with Guru, a little girl called Suma (now Satvika Janani), Moli, the sister of Prathibha Janani, Sri K.P. Vaidyar and his wife and Sri Sridharan. A big crowd had assembled there as spectators and listeners including the family members. The astrologer also arrived in time. My father was living separately as he could not bear the financial burden after the ruin of his business. Presently, knowing that Guru was coming, he also came there.

It took everybody by surprise when they saw Guru for the first time. It was not at all a figure in their imagination. An ordinary looking man clad in white dhoti and shawl. But everyone could see a divine light, a rare aura in that face.

Q: What rituals had taken place subsequently?

A: For everyone, it was totally a different experience from what was expected. Guru along with the little child Suma sat in the front hall. The astrologer sat on one side. Guru asked the astrologer to see what are all there in the house. After calculations, the astrologer said, ‘It’s a very old family. It has an age and tradition of approximately 800 years; We were aware from the disclosures of astrologers earlier that it was a Brahmin household. From the chart, it was made known that there were such and such deities, Brahma Rakshas and Serpent (Naga). It was also disclosed that the remedial measure was to make a temple and install them there.

Q. What was the response of Guru after listening to this?

A: Guru called that little girl to his side and said something. After prostrating before Guru, that girl sat for sometime in meditation. ‘Now see whether these have moved from here,’ Guru asked the astrologer. The astrologer worked out the chart. Agitation was writ on his face. Has the calculation gone wrong? The astrologer doubted. He did the chart again and again. The same results!

Guru: ‘Why, have they all moved?’

Astrologer: ‘From the calculation, it is seen that all have moved’.

Guru: ‘Isn’t the chart true?’

Astrologer: ‘Yes, it is true’.

Guru: ‘Then, what is the doubt?’

The astrologer suddenly rose and prostrated before Guru. ‘Please forgive me. I have not seen anything like this before. I am seeing a unique performance like this for the first time. It is a new experience’.

Some people present asked the astrologer. ‘It was told that all these have moved. Where did it move?’ The astrologer replied loudly across the crowd, ‘It is seen that it was to an Ashram far south’.

Q: What did Guru tell you later about this performance?

A: Guru explained this way: ‘When all these spirits were asked to move after bringing them under the light of Guru, all except one were ready to move. That one was a Sanyasi, a member of the family. As it was standing there as the family head in the ancestral zodiac, it was unwilling to move without someone taking that position. It was however desirous of salvation. The tears of this Sanyasi were causing the family to deteriorate. Only after Guru promised to take that position, the Sanyasi became ready to move. Guru told that it was a soul which had immense love towards the family.

Q: Is the performance known as ‘Pitrusuddhi’ as well?

A: The people at that time had no knowledge about the greatness of Guru. This purifying performance later came to be known as ‘Pitrusuddhi’ or ‘Guru Pooja’, constituting the foundation for the fulfillment of Guru’s mission. I understood its greatness after reading the article, ‘The difference between the Gods and Guru’ - in the ashram monthly.

Q: What is the difference between the Gurupooja in other places and the Gurupooja here?

A: We commonly believe that the luck of the children and the prosperity in every family depend to a great extent on the virtues- merits and demerits of the ancestors. Whenever some difficulties befall us, and when we see it astrologically, we come to know about ‘Pitru Dosha’ – the damaging position of the ancestral souls – and we perform remedial rituals. But a method is not seen among the Hindus to cleanse the manes- ancestral souls, releasing them fully, giving whatever position they deserve. Therefore the ‘Pitru Dosha’ always stands as the reason behind the decay and destruction of the families.

In the path of knowledge, i.e. ‘Sankalpa Matrena Parameswara’ – Self evident Godly realization - without Tantra and Mantra, through the resolve of a self realized Soul, first ever it is through Guru a method is being established for cleansing the Pitrus. In the glow of Guru’s Soul, 18 generations of ancestral souls are cleansed giving them whatever deserved. The Guru Pooja of Santhigiri is also a self-sacrificial action preparing the path for the salvation and liberation of the deities these ancestors worshipped. Through the performance of Guru Pooja, a new generation and culture is being established in the world. After doing Guru pooja for us, Guru said; ‘Do not continue the other ways of worship‘.

Q: Is it not negating the traditional ways of god belief?

A: Guru has not negated anything that exists. Guru teaches that faith and ways of worship we follow since ages are not in tune with the present Dharma of the age and the will of God. This truth is seen in the old scriptures too. In the Sanatana Dharma, which was the ancient culture of India, the Yuga Dharma has been explained. The Mahabharta and Bhagavata have also talked about Yuga Dharma. They have also explained what should be the way of god worship and concepts relating to god realization in each age. But for several ages, a life and the system of worship suitable to this age has not been followed. Therefore, our god concept did not go beyond the plane of ‘heaven’ and the Trinity.

Except for the soothing discourse and expositions on the radiance of Brahman, the planes of consciousness and monism (advaita), practically, god worship and spirituality did not go beyond the sphere of trinity. By stories, ideological discourses and logic, through intellectual prowess and theory of salvation, everything was being submitted at the altar of Trinity. Except that, the mankind could not know about the actual light of God. Without having a path to live and worship as per the wish of that Light mankind got alienated from true Dharma for ages.

Q: What did Guru say about the reason behind it?

A: It was through the path of Manus, mankind received the knowledge about Yuga Dharma and a life culture in accordance to it. The Masters (Gurus) who were the architects of Sanatana Dharma -which is established in the path of knowledge – guided the people as per the dharma of the age. But the Sanatana Dharma got deviated and in course of time, Trinity system came into existence.

Q: What is the explanation received from Guru regarding the cause of decadence of Sanatana Dharma?

A: As per the revelations from Guru, in the 3rd Chaturyuga of this 7th Manvanthara -25 chaturyugas before- an error happened to a Rishi in his vision which brought forth a curse from Brahman. As a consequence, the light of god disappeared from mankind and the path of truth was lost. The memory of Manu itself was obliterated from the mind of man. Several sages took birth after that in many parts of the world and sacrificed their life to guide mankind to virtue and truth, notwithstanding the historical truth that their efforts remain futile.

It is through Guru, the world for the first time knew about the reasons why through the worship of god the problems and desolation of man are not being resolved. The mistake happened to the Manu Lineage did not get revealed to the other sages. As they lived and worshipped without knowing this truth and therefore the mistake remained irreversible. It was in the year 1973, at the time of the fulfillment of Guru’s spiritual stature, these facts were revealed to the disciples through ‘revelation’ and ‘vision’. It was then, the birth and objective of Guru’s life was revealed. We can see an awful situation where after the fading of Manu Dharma, the search for truth languished at the level of Trinity.

Q: Can you tell us in brief the details known about the mission of Guru?

A: Due to the mistake of Manu Lineage, from the time the Yuga Dharma went awry, the sages who came in succession could not guide the spiritual and worldly actions of man in the proper way. Treading the path of truth without having right guidance, innumerable seekers of truth lost track and remained in the spiritual spheres as ‘Yoga Brashtas’ and evil spirits – this has been known from Guru. They influence the thoughts and mind of man and control life. By worshipping these powers - who give ‘visions’ and ‘experiences’ - as God, the system of worship was deviated. The sages, who came to restore the Will of God, after reaching the sphere of Trinity, remained there, unable to go beyond. The history of god realization remains at this sphere of spirituality from where a soul is unable to go further. The life mission of Guru is to restore the lost connection between man and God and thus fulfill the Will of Brahman.

Q: Wasn’t Guru establishing a new path of god worship and concept?

A: Guru has established a path of god worship and god concept suitable to this age. The spiritual paths limited in scope to the availability of ‘heaven’ and trinity stage could be saved through this, leading to God.

Q: What is that path?

A: It is the path of Guru (Guru Margam) which is established in the faith of one Absolute Truth. Behind it is the concept - Guru Sakala Dharmatma – Guru is the essence or soul of all Dharma. After knowing the essence of all Dharma, fulfilling all Karma and then merging with the Supreme Light - Parabrahmam, again taking birth by the command of Brahmam – that epochal Guru is the rightful heir of all Dharma. One can know the greatness of God only through that Guru. Only through such a Guru, the inheritor of all dharma and karma, who came here to fulfill the Will of Brahmam, we can fill our life with prosperity cutting asunder all obstacles that take us backward, spiritually and materially. This is the knowledge and experience received from Guru.

Q: What have you to tell about the experiences in life till now?

A: It is my experience that there is a relationship between the faith and way of worship we follow, and the rise and fall of our life, disintegration of families and societies and cultural degradation. It is an irony that no social reformers, religious pundits, thinkers or scientists inquire or study about this. Even while borrowing new techniques and models to remedy backwardness, we see that the individual, the family and the society is still in turmoil, suffering with contrary experiences and tragedies.

The wisdom should dawn on our scientific, social and political leadership that along with materialistic considerations, there is a determining role, relevance and importance to spirituality. It is also my conviction that the ideology of Guru can be transmitted to others only through the sacrificial life of each disciple.

(Translated from the original Malayalam by Mukundan PR)

Courtesy: Santhigiri Publications, Santhigiri Ashram
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