Note: This question is the second in a series of questions: ‘Three questions every spiritual seeker asks‘.
Once you are set in the spiritual path, your mind will ask this question again and again — who is my guru? Even if the awakening happened clearly in the presence of a particular guru, your mind will still have this question. This is the nature of the mind. It will never be satisfied, however good the answer be. Its job is to question, anything and everything.
So how to deal with this cunning mind?
Whenever you have a question in your mind, you have to look for the source of that question consciously. You should ask — from where this question arise? Obviously the first answer is the ‘mind’. The question definitely came from the ‘mind’. But don’t stop here. Because this is not the true answer. You have to go further. Now you have to ask — from where does the ‘mind’ come? Once you start asking this question, you will know that there is nothing called ‘mind’. The mind that had hundreds of questions will now vanish altogether. It will not happen overnight, but with sustained practice, it will happen one day. Because in reality there is nothing called mind. Mind is just a bunch of thoughts. In reality, there is only ‘you’. Mind is just an illusion.
Now, lets get back to the question ‘who is my guru?’ When you are awakened, you start paying attention to everything. You become more conscious and you start to see things as they are. When you start seeing things as they are, without any prejudice of the mind, you will realize that the knowledge comes from everywhere, not just from the guru that your mind has assumed. You will recognize the role of different people around you in your life.
In my case, after my spiritual awakening, first thing I became aware of was that there were so many living self-realized people on this planet. I had no doubt that Sadhguru was a personified form of my guru, but after my awakening, I became aware of other gurus who had influenced me previously. For example, I realized that swami Prabhupada had implanted the seed of spirituality upon me many years ago when I had visited India. I had read “Gita” written by him at that time but could not understand it much. But after my spiritual awakening, I could understand the verses of Gita effortlessly. Similarly, there are several self-realized beings who have touched my heart at different times. If I have to name, I would name Sri Sri Ravishankar, Mata Amritanandamayi, Ramana Maharishi, Mooji baba and Osho Rajneesh. In fact these masters came in my life as I needed them. And each of them imparted unique knowledge upon me that progressively cleared the confusions of the mind.
And it was Ramana Maharishi and Mooji baba who made me realize that our “self” is the ultimate guru. I would say, only with their instructions, I really started turning inward. Only then, I understood the real meaning of “awareness”, in my own experience. Only then, I realized that we cannot really do meditation — we can only be meditative. Until then, I was looking outside for a guru to come and bless me.
You will meet many gurus in your spiritual path at different times. But once you find the guru within you, all other gurus will disappear. Ultimately, you will realize that the ‘self’ is the only true guru. Everything else is the illusion of the mind.