July 31, 2015
On this sacred day of Guru Purnima, celebrated by devotees throughout the world who follow India’s tradition of paying homage to the guru, we lay at the feet of our own beloved Gurudeva, Sri Sri Paramahansa Yogananda, our hearts’ devotion and gratitude. How blessed we are that God has drawn us to such a pure channel of His love to be our eternal friend and guide in the journey from the darkness of maya to the light and freedom we are meant to find in Him. I pray that each of you open your heart and mind anew to the guru’s love and wisdom, that he may fulfil his most cherished wish for you—union with the Divine Beloved of your soul.
For lifetimes you may have lived in the small cage of the ego—accepting its limitations, the conditions it places upon your happiness, and its vulnerability to the unpredictable circumstances of this world. The guru comes to rouse the heroic qualities of the soul, by which we overcome all that hinders the expression of our innate divinity. As Guruji said of his own guru, Swami Sri Yukteswar: “He wanted perfection for me. He wanted me to be supremely happy. That was his happiness. He wanted me to know God; to be with the Divine Mother for whom my heart longed.” That is also our guru’s desire for us. The sadhana he has given, when faithfully practised, infallibly leads to that goal, and he has assured us, “God has sent you to me, and I shall never fail you.” Inherent in his promise is an unconditional love that transcends all boundaries of space and time and will watch over you until you reach God-consciousness. The disciple’s part is to recognize and receive the guru’s love in all its guises—in his words of guidance, in answered prayers, and especially in challenges and difficulties that stretch one’s faith and endurance and offer new opportunities to grow and change. Those of us who were with Gurudeva often found that just when we thought we had attained a new level of spiritual progress, he would “raise the bar.” We learned to ban from our consciousness the thought, “I can’t,” and he asks the same of you—for by your willingness to keep reaching a little higher, you will receive the fullness of his blessings. If human nature resists, that is the time to ignore the skilfully rationalizing mind and listen to the quiet voice of the heart’s devotion, which urges us to trust and surrender to him. Surrender is the key that will open every closed door in our consciousness to the guru’s purifying, transforming power.
The greatest gift you can give to Gurudeva is to cooperate with him in your own salvation. His standards are high, yet he will guide you with infinite compassion, for he sees and honours the divine image within you and wants you to honour it too. I encourage you to apply the truths he taught and attune yourself with him daily in the soul-silence beyond the reach of maya. There you can most tangibly feel his presence and God’s power flowing through him to help you cast off the limitations of the little “I” and become your true divine Self. Jai Guru!
In God and Gurudeva’s love and unceasing blessings,
Sri Sri Mrinalini Mata
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