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One Who Is A Guru Should Give Up Lust And Greed

Before promoting oneself as an acharya and taking disciples, a guru should give up lust and greed. Sri Ramakrishna explores the duties of both Guru and disciple. These words of Sri Ramakrishna on Guru is from the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna.

Maya is nothing but the egotism of the embodied soul. This maya, that is to say, the ego, is like a cloud. The sun cannot be seen on account of a thin patch of cloud; when that disappears one sees the sun. If by the grace of the guru one's ego vanishes, then one sees God. All the knots of ignorance come undone in the twinkling of an eye, through the guru's grace. Do you know what it is like? Suppose a room has been kept dark a thousand years. The moment a man brings a light into it, the darkness vanishes. Not little by little.

One needs faith – faith in the words of the guru, childlike faith. One understands the scriptures better by hearing them from the lips of the guru or of a holy man. Then one doesn't have to think about their non-essential part. One attains God by following the guru's instructions step by step. The guru is like a companion who leads you by the hand. It is like reaching an object by following the trail of a thread. There can be no fear if the guru's grace descends on one.

If a man in the form of a guru awakens spiritual consciousness in you, then know for certain that it is God the Absolute who has assumed that human form for your sake. When the disciple has the vision of the Ishta, through the guru's grace, he finds the guru merging in Him. Satchidananda alone is the guru.

Anyone and everyone cannot be a guru. It is not good to be a guru by profession. One cannot be a teacher without a command from God. But it won't do if a man only imagines that he has God's command. God does reveal Himself to man and speak. Only then may one receive His command. How forceful are the words of such a teacher! They can move mountains. But mere lectures? People will listen to them for a few days and then forget them. They will never act upon mere words.

A man who is himself ignorant starts out to teach others — like the blind leading the blind! Instead of doing good, such teaching does harm. After the realization of God one obtains an inner vision. Only then can one diagnose a person's spiritual malady and give instruction. A huge timber floats on the water and can carry animals as well. But a piece of worthless wood sinks, if a man sits on it, and drowns him. Therefore, in every age God incarnates Himself as the guru, to teach humanity.

Renunciation of the world is needful for those whom God wants to be teachers of men. One who is an acharya should give up kamini-kanchana, lust and greed. It is not enough for him to renounce only mentally; he should also renounce outwardly. Only then will his teaching bear fruit.