Spiritual Master – There are several self-appointed spiritual masters today. These personalities proliferate over the web, create their own web sites, and have an increasing quantity of followers. Many can be found on YouTube delivering their message. This is extremely charming but how can we discern an authentic master from a bogus one? We have been finding that some of these so-called gurus happen to be exposed as cruel, greedy and/or sexually abusive, but they may be fooling the population and their followers by their denials. If an individual discovers this information, then a guru should likely to end up dismissed. We don’t necessarily must be hasty in our judgment but because expression goes, “where there is smoke, there is fire.” There is not enough time in life to remain on a bogus spiritual path or using a bogus teacher.
In the event the student is ready, the master will come, but the sincere student must be qualified also. When we engage in spiritually detrimental nonsense like alcohol and drugs, gambIing, or sexual promiscuity, you have to may not yet be fit to comprehend the Truth. These types of activities cover our true nature similar to anger and greed. Hence, if wish to meet a bona fide spiritual teacher, then we must minimally try renouncing this stuff. Otherwise we will surely be misled by cheater gurus.
Sri Chaitanya, a 16th century spiritual master wrote, “O Lord, We’ve no desire to accumulate wealth, nor will i desire beautiful women nor should i want any number of followers. I only would like causeless service, birth after birth.” Therefore, would you judge the character with the spiritual master? In the Upadeshamrita it states, “A sober person, who is able to tolerate the urge to communicate, the mind’s demands, those things of anger as well as the urges of the tongue, belly and genitals, is qualified to make disciples worldwide.” This should be the barometer when accepting a spiritual teacher. However, we must understand this statement in their proper context. In most cases, this statement is direct enough to grasp. The urge to speak doesn’t mean one practices silence however it indicates that the spiritual teacher only discuss spiritual topics or those linked to one’s service. The urges in the tongue does not mean to consume meagerly. It also involves eating only pure, clean, wholesome foods – no meat, fish or eggs. Manipulating the belly implies that you don’t overeat. Controlling the genitals means that one does not have sex beyond a holy bond with one’s partner. Regulated love life is meant for those couples that are totally committed to each other, otherwise one should practice celibacy. The mind’s demands are the material desires and mental impressions that flow continuously like waves inside ocean. These waves of desire and rejection gradually relax by controlling the mind with assorted recommended practices of specific yoga techniques or meditation. Not being angry but peaceful and non-violent speaks by itself. The novice student learns, over time, how to do develop good qualities like cleanliness (in thought and deed), patience, humility and austerity. Spirituality can be a practice that takes an eternity of commitment. The enlightened spiritual master has received many years or even life points in the spiritual practice so one should practice patience.
Seeing that we can intelligently pick a spiritual teacher, how should we understand what enlightenment is? The famous Zen proverb brilliantly describes enlightenment; “Before enlightenment – chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment – chop wood, carry water”. You don’t need to necessarily need to change one’s station in your life, however a change in consciousness is required. One byproduct of spiritual practices will be the attainment of peace and contentment. This state to become implies that the material desires that arise within the mind have either settled or dissipated. Sri Chaitanya has also written, “Think of oneself as less than the straw in the street; be more tolerant compared to a tree, devoid of all a feeling of false prestige, and stay ready to offer all respect to others.” Then one can constantly mediate on God and the welfare of all living beings. This could take years of practice. There won’t be any shortcuts or honorary degrees. You may notice that one of your fellow spiritual brothers or sisters has seemingly become enlightened after having a short time, in that case they might have had other lifetimes of practice, however a lot of the by very good actors. The spiritual path is often a razor’s edge. It takes devotion, patience, love and humility to endure. Endurance is the key word. Spiritual our life is not for the average person. It is meant for those with a loving heart ready to offer their life inside the service of humanity, guru and the Supreme Godhead.