Guru Purnima, also referred as Vyasa Poornima, is observed on the full moon day (Purnima) in the Hindu month of Ashada or Ashara (June – July). Guru Purnima 2013 date is July 22. The day is dedicated to the Guru – one who dispels darkness. Guru is honored and given due respect on Guru Charan Pujan day. Sage Vyasa is considered the Adi Guru or the first Guru in Hindu religion and therefore the day is also known as Vyas Poornima.
The Guru Gita in the Skanda Purana hails guru in this famous verse:
Guru brahma Guru vishnu Gururdevo Maheshwaraha
Guruhu sakshaat Parambrahman tasmai Shrigurave namaha‘Guru is Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva,
Veneration to the Guru who has manifested as Parabrahman.’
The true Guru is a transmitting medium, a transporting agent and transparent embodiment of the divine grace and compassion, the focal point of the timeless eternity and finite time.
A real Guru not only points the direction to the goal but takes the consciousness of the surrendered disciple into his consciousness and makes the inflow of the Higher into the lower continuously, till the three consciousness of the Isvara, the Guru and the Atman of the disciple become one undifferentiated whole. (Extract from the preface of Prabodhasudhakara published by Samata Books.)
While honoring and following the Guru we must also be cautious as the world today is filled with fake gurus and swamis – who make a living out of spirituality.
Ramakrishna Paramahamsa says about true guru like this
He alone is the true teacher who is illumined by the light of true knowledge.
Bees come of themselves to the full-blown flower when the breeze wafts its fragrance all around. Ants come of themselves to the spot where sweets are placed. No one needs to invite the bee or the ant. So when a man becomes pure and perfect, the sweet influence of his character spreads everywhere, and all who seek the Truth are naturally drawn towards him. He need not go in search of an audience to listen to him.
It is very hard to find a true and real Guru in the modern day but luckily the great Saints of Sanatana Dharma stored their wisdom in the Upanishads, Yoga Vashista and Gita. Guru Purnima day is rightly termed as Vyasa Poornima because Guru Vyasa is the greatest editor and compiler of holy texts in Hinduism. He has provided all the necessary elements needed to understand the Truth and to lead a happy and peaceful life; only we need to have patience and time to read and digest the unparalleled wisdom treasured in the Holy Scriptures in Hinduism.
A Guru need not always be a person clad in saffron or white, it can be a book, an incident, a small child or any aspect in nature. Any person or incident that removes darkness and fills with light or Brahman realization is a Guru.
Special pujas and rituals are held on the day. Satsangs and meetings are held to honor Saints. Eminent speakers and scholars present articles on Sage Vyasa and his contribution towards Santana Dharma on the day.
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