Wednesday, February 01, 2006




In earlier times parting of knowledge from one generation to another was hereditary- that is teaching was imparted from father to son and so on. In the first instant Lord Adipurusha imparted knowledge to Brahma. Then Brahma passed on the same to Narada/Vasistha / Prajapathies etc.( sons of Brahma)Thereafter the parampara knowledge was passed on to Sakthi- Parasara-Vyasa-Suka- and so on in the same order. From Suka Brahmam onwards-hereditary chain is reported to have been broken since Sri Suka remained as a brahmachari. Guru Sishya Parampara outside family circle is reported to have started from this period onwards.

Sri.Gouda Padar was guru of Sri Govidna Bagavat Padar, who was the guru to Sri. Adi Sankarar. Sri. Adi Sankaracharya had four disciples namely –Sriyuths: Padmapadar, Hasthamalakar, Throdakacharyar, and Sureswarar (Mandala Misrar- earlier Sishya of Kumarila Bhattar).

Narayanam padmabhuvam vasishtam, Sakthim, cha thad puthra- Paaracharam cha.-- Vyasam Sukam, Goudapadam mahantham, Govinda Yogeendramadasya Sishyam.- Sri Sankaracharya madhasya Padmapadam cha Hasthamalakam cha Sishyam/. Tham Todakam Varthikara anyan Asmat guroon santatham Anathosmi..”

Three great rare opportunities or boons obtained by the grace of God are to get a Maanusha Janma, the desire to know the truth, and finally in getting a great man as Guru.

Durlabham thrayamedad devanughraha Hethukam.
Manushyathwam, Mumukshatwam, Mahapurusha Samasrayaha:

A True Guru has character of divinity. Para Brahman has no attribute or form. Then how to know him and to reach him to get His grace. Only through a Guru one can get to know the Lord – through the knowledge imparted by him. In Guru “GU” represents Gunas – attributed and “RU” represents Rupa or form/rupa Thus “GURU” is the Paramathman with attribute and form. Guru thus lead the seeker of knowledge by removing (GU) means the darkness- anthakara- the ajnana - (“RU” –means- Removing) i.e by removing ajnana/darkness by imparting knowledge of light/the vision.

“Gu"-karachandhakarasthu Ru-karasthannirodhakrith
Andhakarasya Ravi nasinyodh gururithya abhideeyadhe

Ajnana Thimirandhasya Jnananchana Salakaya
Chashuhu militham ena thasmaii sri Gurave namaha”

One who delivers lectures or writes books without him self crossing the ocean of Samsara, is nothing more than a mere professor or doctorate holder. A person who conducts religious rites as per “agama sastras” is only a Purohit, and who makes a living from the financial assistance received from the kartha. Only that “ Bhrahmajnani,who in addition to himself crossing the ocean of “ Samsara” help others also to cross that ocean, can be called a Guru. An Acharya is one who in addition to explaining the meaning of the “Sastras” (scriptures) leads others into that discipline, and himself, shows practical adherence to discipline by his own conduct.

In Viveka Chudamani Acharya Sankara (Period: 509- 477 BC) ( some say the period as AD 788 to 820) who was exponent of Advaita Vedanta and Shanmatha Sthapaka describes “Acharya “ as follows: -

“Theerna Swayam Bheema Bhavarnavam Jnanan
Ahethuna Nanyapi tharayanthaha:
Santhom Mahnthom nivasanthi santhom
Vasanthova Lokahitham Karanthaha:”

The Shanmatham propagated by Sri. Adi Sankara is Sauryam, Ganapathyam,Kaumaram, Saivam, Vishnavam and Saktham. While bringing in clear awareness about our Hindu Sanatana Dharma, he also codified the system of conducting worship of various deities. According to Shanmatham System, worship of Lord Muruga was added to the Siva Panchayata Pooja. Sri Adi Sankara established 4 Mutts in four corners of India.The first madathipathies of the four Mutts i.e Sringeri ( Sri Mutt) Puri (Jagannath mutt),Dwaraka, and Badarinath(Joshi) were Sri. Sureswara Charya, Sri Padmapada, Sri.Hasthamalaka, and Sri Totakacharya respectively.It is reported that each of the above Mutts was also entrusted with separate branch of Vedas for specialization. The historic sacred pontifical throne of the Sringeri Mutt is known as VYAKHYANA SIMHASANA or seat of learning. It is reported that this seat was given to the great Sankara by Saraswathi, the Godess of learning herself.
Dasanami Sanyasins i.e Saraswathi, Bharathi, Puri,Thirtha,Asrama, Giri, Prvata and Sagar,Vana and Aranya are organized by Sri.Sankara.

Sri.Sankara’s teachings can be summed up in the following words: Brahma Satyam, Jagat Mithya, Jeevo Brahmaiva na Aparah:

The other main Hindu philosophies came after Sri. Adi Sankara are Vishishta Advaitha and Dwaitha. 12 Alwars ( period AD – 600-900) Sri.Nathamuni ( Ad 824-924) Sri, Yamuna ( AD 918- 1028) Sri. Ramanujam (AD- 1017- 1137) were pioneers of Vishishta Advaitha System. Sri.Jayathirtha of 13th Century, Sri.Vysa Thirtha (AD_1447-1539) Sri. Ragavendra ( AD- 1598-1671) stabilised Dwaitha System after establishment of this system by Sri. Madhva Charya-( Anantha Thirtha- AD- 1238-1317).

Apart from the above great saints/sanyasins many other Saiva /Vaishnava/ Madhwa saints/sanyasins had also contributed imparting of knowledge through Guru parampara.Lord Dakshinamurthi is considered as the Jagath Guru by Advaitha followers.

Just as we need a doctor to cure our illness a GURU is necessary to know what the scriptures have ordained for us and to teach us the particular course of action suited to our qualification. If we wish for a guru in all earnestness, he will be before us in no time. But if we require his presence only to test his competence of a guru he will be farther off than before.

So surrender to GURU entirely. He will take us by the hand and lead us to the goal. He is not blinded by the enveloping darkness of ignorance and is sure to guide us properly. Guru is Brahma Guru is Vishnu , Guru is Maheswara, and He is the prathyaksha parabrahman himself with GU-na and RU-pa ( Guru= Guna Rupa of God)

“Guru: Brahma Guru: Vishnu: Gururdhevo Maheswara:
Guru: Sakshaat param Brahma Tasmaii Sree Gurave Nama:
Gurave Sarva Lokanam Bhishaje Bhavaroginam
Nidhaye Sarva Vidhyanam Sree Dakshinamoothaye Nama:”

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