Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The lila that surrounds a Siddha (saint)

When I read this commentary by Michael James of Shri Ramana Maharishi's lack of attachment and concern about "bad" (and good) things that went on around him, I thought it so accurately describes the level of lila, a sort of crazy dance, that surrounds anyone in this world who attracts attention, power or money, realized or not.

Sri Ramana Maharishi
"Michael James: Whatever good or bad comes to a Sahaja Jnani, He remains Himself ever unaffected by them and unconcerned with them, since He knows Himself to be Self, which is other than the experiencer of the good or the bad. His state may be compared to a cinema screen, which is neither burnt by pictures of fire nor drenched by pictures of water, though it is the support of all those pictures. This completely unattached and unconcerned state of true knowledge (jnana) was well illustrated by the life of Sri Bhagavan. Though so many bad things went on around Him – though some bogus sadhus tried to pose as His guru, though because of jealousy they tried to kill Him by rolling boulders on Him, though some insincere devotees pretended to love Him but did mischief behind His back, though some people gave Him intoxicating drugs like bhang, though a will was made in His name, though court cases went on against Him, though an abusive book was written about Him, though some of His good devotees like Sri Muruganar were ill-treated and abused, though some so-called disciples even tried deliberately to misinterpret His teachings by mistranslating them and by writing false commentaries on them, and so on – and though so many good things went on around Him – though sincere devotees came to Him and praised Him as the Supreme Lord, though His Jayanti, Golden Jubilee and other functions were celebrated on such a grand scale, though His name and fame spread all over the world, and so on – He ever remained as a mere witness, unconcerned with all these things."
From Guru Vachaka Kovai by Shri Ramana Maharshi, commentary by Michael James

I have witnessed and unwittingly participated in such lilas at times around my own guruji.

I have also heard of something once said which contradicts something else now said, and witnessed how yogis struggle to reconcile what has been with what comes up now. All of this, to me, indicates how different a guru's communications are (from "non-gurus"), how a guru is filled with the divine shakti of that moment, a shakti which determines what words are chosen and especially how the words affect those who hear them, a transformative power which is always equally (and sometimes more) important than the concept being addressed.

The teachings are different. They are immutable. A guru would never weaken the teachings. This is part of the definition of a teaching, i.e. as something greater than the guru or her role as the source of the grace and transformative power to support the unfolding consciousness of the devotee.

To protect the teachings is to protect the shakti of the (guru's) lineage.

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