A View of Santhigiri Ashram

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

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Language of Secular Spirituality

Gurucharanam Saranam

The Language of Secular Spirituality
Mukundan P.R.

From time immemorial man has drawn several pictures and symbols of the Divine on this universal canvass. For millennia the divine was associated with celestial beings, gods and goddesses – the Roman gods, the Greek gods, the Mayan gods or the Egyptian or Indian gods well known among others. As time passed by and the consciousness of man evolved, man erased many of his old pictures and drew new ones. From the beginning of this new era of Kaliyuga more than 5200 years back, it was the age of great spiritual upheavals. In India, the Seers of the Upanishads, Sri Krishna and Buddha and other sages represent this lineage of spiritual masters who took human consciousness to new heights of sublime spiritual contemplation while disassociating themselves from the prevalent ritualistic tradition.

In the West too, a chain of masters appeared like Abraham, Moses and John the Baptist, before the birth of Christianity and Islam. One can find parallel to all spiritual ideologies in the world in the ancient Indian culture as they are in fact the spin off from the disintegration of Sanatana Dharma. India was truly the forerunner in original spiritual thoughts. But sadly, India could not be benefited from its spiritual bounty.

If the case of India, the supposed torch bearer of spirituality is thus dismal, neither encouraging is the situation in other parts of the world. Even the teachings of Moses, Jesus Christ or Prophet Mohammed could not succeed bringing peace to mankind. In the West, the institution of family has been almost completely collapsed, spewing unrest and instability in social life, with the graph of crimes and health crises spiraling up. More dangerous is the impending peril of natural calamities arising out of man’s greed and blind exploitation of natural resources.

It is distressing to note that man has bombed the surface of moon recently disturbing its divine serenity. Man’s attempt to tamper with the planetary system using science and technology is a dangerous trend. Above all is the campaign of terror and inhuman violence let loose by the fanatic fringe in the name of jihad and other parochial or fundamentalist ideologies.

The canvass of the universe has been dirtied beyond reparation with the putrefying carcasses of a bygone past suffocating the march of mankind to progress and peace. The time has come to draw a fresh picture of Divinity and to have a dialogue on the human prospect. The birth of NavajyotiSree Karunakara Guru (1927 – 1999) is in line with this Divine concern. The divine mission of Guru is beyond the confines of all religious dogma. When Guru settled at His Ashram in Pothencode erecting a small hut, He was inaugurating a new spiritual ideology, which links and relates the past with the present meaningfully, in continuation with a Divine Will in Nature, encompassing the whole humanity.

Santhigiri Ashram has today grown into a reputed spiritual institution with thousands of followers in India and abroad. The Ashram believes in an action oriented spiritual life and has several enterprises in the area of healthcare and education, especially for the rejuvenation of Indian systems of medicine. Many eminent leaders, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, UPA Chairperson Smt. Sonia Gandhi, the then leader of opposition Sri L.K. Advani et al visited the Ashram and shared the vision of the Guru with Her Holiness Sishyapoojita Amrita Jnana Tapaswini, the present spiritual head of Santhigiri Ashram. Late Sri K.R. Narayanan, former President of India was greatly inspired by the Guru. He donated his ancestral property at Uzhavoor to Santhigiri Ashram for the establishment of a research institute for the promotion of Ayurveda and Siddha.

Today, the humble hut, the parnasala where Guru first made His abode, has been transformed into a giant lotus- shaped marble embellished structure, rare of its kind in the world, after a tireless work of ten years. On the eve of the dedication of the Parnasala to humanity on 12th September, 2010, Santhigiri Ashram, established by the Guru is organizing a Spiritual Congress, an all Religious Meet in which eminent spiritual leaders from all over India would participate.

It is only befitting to the great epochal Guru, who sacrificed His lifetime of 72 years for the peace and spiritual unification of mankind. Santhigiri Ashram is a spiritual abode, blessed with the revelations of the Divine and the present spiritual head of the Ashram, Her Holiness Sishyapoojita Amrita Jnana Tapaswini is the repository of those divine revelations, through whom the Guru still communicates revelatory visions for the building up a new world beginning from ones home and society, irrespective of caste, religious affiliations and other discriminations based on gender, class or color differences. Sishyapoojita said about the message of Guru:

‘The message of Guru’s life is beyond the confines of time and place. Guru, who is the perceiver of three-fold time, guides us remaining as the Radiance in the primordial plane of God’s creational contemplation, comprehending the nuances in the meaning of mankind’s liberation through His own life, knowing and making it known. Mankind should take up the mission of Guru as an austerity of guiding us to Satya Yuga (the golden era of truth), rectifying the disasters in the dharma of Kaliyuga as well as that across the ages through the action of disciples…..'

The teachings of NavajyotiSree Karunakara Guru deal with varied fundamental spiritual concepts such as –

i) Sanatana Dharma and Experiential Spirituality
ii) Concept of Cosmic Evolution and Yuga Dharma
iii) Manus and Yuga Cycles
iv) Stages of Spiritual Evolution
v) Astral Pollution or Diabolic Spirit world
vi) The relation of spiritual practices with-

a. Genetic problems and diseases
b. Parental curses and family disorientation
c. Social degeneration
d. The causes of success and failure and other misfortunes in life

vii) Healing of Karmic diseases and Ancestral curses
viii) The role of woman in the family
ix) Marriage and family Life
x) Civilizing the progeny

These topics are in fact the language of Secular Spirituality propounded by NavajyotiSree Karunakara Guru and will constitute the pivotal principles for a civilizational change.
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