[Advaita-l] The Sadguru Graces All Immaculately - parables of Sringeri JagadGuru
avsundarrajan at yahoo.com
Sat Sep 23 14:57:54 CDT 2006
In light of recent posts on Samadhi etc this parable emphasising the role of Grace
from the book 'Edifying Parables' may be very appropriate. This post is 'longish', hopefully since it is a story, shoudn't prove too hard to read.
('Edifying Parables' of HH
Jagadguru Sri Abhinava Vidyateertha Mahaswamigal is published by Sri
Vidyateertha Foundation, Chennai)
The Sadguru Graces All Immaculately
An enlightened sage lived in a forest spending most of his time
oblivious of his body and surroundings, in Nirvikalpa Samadhi, the
acme of Yoga.
One day, two youths came to his divine presence and reverentially
waited, standing motionless with joined palms, till his mind emerged
When, on his opening his half-closed eyes, his glance fell on them,
they prostrated for long. Thereafter, they humbly beseeched him to
grace them by accepting them as his disciples. By virtue of his
realization of the non-dual Truth he had transcended all duties and
wants. However, being on, ocean of mercy, he acquiesced to their
To provide them an opportunity to perform Guru-Seva, which is
invaluable for a disciple, he assigned them tasks to be performed on
a daily basis, such as washing his ochre robes, cleaning the place
where he performed penance and obtaining food by begging in the
villages at the edge of the forest. He initiated both of them into a
Mantra and taught them how to meditate.
One of the disciples soon became an adept at meditation who sat for
hours with a rock-steady, concentrated mind, without awareness of
even the body.
The other wholeheartedly and regularly attempted to meditate but
found his efforts consistently thwarted by distracting thoughts that
kept on arising and disappearing like the waves of the ocean.
The first disciple readily grasped, in its entirety, what the sage
The second lad sincerely attended the classes and read for long the
portions taught. But as he was not bright, he comprehended far less
than his companion. Both the disciples efficiently carried out the
tasks assigned to them with thoroughness.
Five years passed. One day the Guru told his disciples, "Your
studies are now complete and it is time for you to return to your
homes". They loved their Guru dearly and the mere thought of being
separated from vim was very painful. However, they had the firm
conviction that at no time should any command of the Guru be
transgressed, even to the slightest extent, for any reason
So, in deference to their Guru's directive, they got ready to leave.
The first disciple prostrated before his Guru. The sage blessed him
with Abhaya-Mudra, upraised palm.
When the second disciple prostrated, the sage placed his divine hand
on the disciple's head and stated with certainty, "May you become
fully enlightened, right now." His grace was so potent that the
disciple instantaneously became an enlightened Mahatma.
The first disciple felt unhappy that, unlike his friend, he had not
received the special blessing. Not one to hide his feelings or
thoughts from his Guru, he asked with joined palms,
"Lord, a doubt has arisen in my mind. I seek your permission to
express it to you. By your grace, my meditation has been far
superior to his and I have grasped much more during your classes
than him. Such being the case, O Master, why did you specially grace
him rather than me? In case my query is inappropriate, kindly
Guru: Prior to my answering your question, let me pose some queries
to you. What do you think of me?
First disciple: You are my revered Guru. You are a great sage
who has realized the Supreme and achieved all that is to be achieved.
Guru : Do I appear to be a man given to transacting
business with his disciples?
First disciple: Certainly not.
Guru: My child, you referred to your superior meditation
and your greater grasp of Vedanta. You aver that I am not a trader.
Why, then, do you expect me to dispense grace proportional to a
disciple's service, success in absorbing my teaching and
progress in meditation practiced according to my
You further say that I have achieved
all that is to be achieved. If so, I stand to gain
nothing by your service or by producing a scholar
adept at meditation, through whom my name shall spread.
First disciple : Are not Meditation and Vichara means to getting
knowledge of the Truth, which is what my companion has now got?
Guru : Of course they are. If properly practiced,
Meditation and Vichara eradicate the ego.
You, my child, feel, "I meditate well. I am a scholar."
You should not be egoistic like this.
Your companion, on the other hand, feels,
"I am nothing. Whatever state my Guru places me in,
that is all that I want. Let my Guru do whatever
he wished to do with me".
First disciple: If there be the possibility of a disciple
who has not progressed in the spiritual path straightaway
getting enlightened by the grace of the Guru,
then does not spiritual effort become something
that is dispensable?
Guru: Not at all. A disciple should carry out his Guru's
instructions to the very best of his ability and then
have everything in the hands of his Guru or God ;
that ability of his may be great or insignificant.
If a disciple were to be indolent or careless,
thinking "I need not personally take steps in the
direction shown by my Guru. May he himself
deliver me to the goal", he will certainly not attain
Undoubtedly, your companion did do his best.
It is true that you, whose capacity is far
greater than his, were also sincere.
My child. I love both of you equally. A mother
attends more to a baby that is a few days old
than to her ten-year-old child.
This is not because she loves the latter less
but because the former is in greater need of care.
You are very intelligent, learned and meditate well.
Combat your ego and realization of the supreme
shall be yours. For that, you have my complete blessings.
Your companion is helpless like a new-born baby.
He is neither intelligent, nor learned and his mind
wanders like the wind. If I had not uplifted him myself,
he would have been lost.
So, I gave him special blessings. As for You, you too shall
become enlightened. Have no doubt or apprehension regarding this.
Numerous are the persons who shall be uplifted by you.
The Guru then called out to the second disciple, who was standing at
some distance to allow his companion to converse in private.
Guru : If I had ignored you when you prostrated, what would you have
Second disciple: Lord, you are everything to me. You know best. So,
I would have remained quiet and fully satisfied if you had ignored
or even cursed me.
Turning to the first disciple, the Guru said, "See how profound his
devotion is. He spoke truthfully when he said that he would have
been satiated even if I had cursed him. I blessed you and yet you
felt dissatisfied. What a difference there is between his devotion
The first disciple hung his head in shame. Looking at him with
compassion, the Guru unequivocally declared,
"I questioned your companion for the sole purpose of creating a
situation conducive to eradicate your ego, the obstacle in your
path. Now that humility has pervaded your heart, you deserve the
highest and shall have it."
Saying so, he released a flood of grace. Submerged in it, the first
disciple promptly attained the most-exalted state of the sage.
Regardless of the differences between disciples, the ideal Sadguru
knows and does what is best for each of them. His mode of bestowing
Grace is ever immaculate.
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