In Part-1 of this series, I talked about the confusions and internal conflicts that arise, if the guru-disciple relationship is not seen in proper, higher perspective. In this part, I will discuss my own confusions, and how my teacher Siddhar Thirumoolar clarified my doubts using my wordly relationships as examples.
I got caught up in this cycle of confusions and inner conflicts, immediately after Siddhar Thirumoolar made his first contact with me (I discussed this in, How I contacted Thirumoolar). As I mentioned in that article, I also took initiation into Babaji’s Kriya Yoga (BKY) before this contact, and I had taken Mahavatar Kriya Babaji as my guru.
Until Siddhar Thirumoolar contacted me, I hadn’t realized that I was treating Babaji (even though I hadn’t made a personal contact with him) with some mystery, awe and most importantly some form of fear and dependency. The moment Siddhar Thirumoolar contacted me, questions arose, “Will it anger Babaji, if I take Thirumoolar as my guru as well? Oh, my god, what have I done?” I know this is insane. But, the sane part of me said, “Don’t worry. Babaji and Thirumoolar belong to the same lineage of Siddha masters. Though not known yet, I am sure there is a reason why this contact was made. Just go with the flow.” But, that insane part of me, the part with limited ideas and thoughts, kept coming up and confusing the issue. Then, I got initiated into Thirumoolar’s Siva Yoga (TSY), even though this question was still nagging me in a corner of my mind.
As time went on with with my practice of TSY, more truths about guru-disciple relationship were revealed (discussed in articles, here, and here), but a nagging feeling still continued. While writing and posting the article, How I contacted Thirumoolar, something happened in me; felt something open up—a channel for communication, maybe.
Another Dialogue with Siddhar Thirumoolar
Finally, my guru Siddhar Thirumoolar contacted me again to put my doubts, about my relationship with him and Babaji, to rest. Below I present—after editing out sections that discuss techniques personalized for me—the dialog I had with him.
[ During meditation, a powerful, loving voice started in the form of thoughts, exclusive of all others, about my stubbornness of not accepting a few things in my life as they are ]
I said, “What? I am just hearing something. I am probably telling something to myself.“
The voice came again, “I am Thirumoolar.“
I said, “That night I saw you. How am I not seeing you now and only hearing you? I would like to see you.” (See How I contacted Thirumoolar.)
He said, “Not yet. That day you saw me in semi-conscious state. In conscious state, you won’t be able to handle the light. Your inner senses need to open up fully.“
I asked, “I also want to see Babaji. I have never seen him. Some times I wonder…“
He said, “Don’t worry. In time you will see him. Know that he is there for you.“
That really made me happy. I saw a faint outline of the smiling face of Thirumoolar as we see him in the painting.
So, I asked him, “I have been having this confusion for a long time. If I take you as my guru, would I be insulting Babaji? I know at a deeper level, it is absurd to think that way, but my limited thinking keeps coming up with this question.”
I felt him smiling, again.
He said, “The problem is coming because you are treating us as gurus and putting us on a pedestal. Treat me as your aNNa.” [ aNNa, in Tamil and Telugu—two of the Indian languages—means “Elder Brother.” ]
I said, “How can I treat you as my elder brother? Is it not disrespect? You are so expansive, so much more older, and so much more knowledgeable than me.“
He smiled and said, “Think of it this way. When you were born, your biological brother was sixteen years old. So, he was sixteen years older than you. Did you not call him aNNa? You still learned from him, as you grew up, did you not? It is the same way. I came before you and gained the knowledge. As your aNNa, I am here to pass it on to you. If calling me ‘aNNa’ puts your mind at ease, then that is what you should do. There is no disrespect in it.“
I asked, “How about Babaji?“
He smiled, “You can call Babaji, aNNa as well.“
I asked, “How about Lord Muruga?“
He said, “You can call him appa (Father in Tamil language) or Murugappa (Father Muruga). He is the father to all of us.“
I said, “Okay Gurudeva.” [ GurudEva means “Divine Teacher.” ]
He said, “You don’t need to address me that way. Call me aNNa.“
I said, “Sorry. aNNa!“
He continued, “I don’t want you to worship me or Babaji. Take away our pictures that you kept in front of the computer on your work desk.“
I said, “Okay. I will do that,” as he continued, “In the pUja (meditation) room I want you to face east and away from where you kept all the deity pictures. That is, your back should be to the deity. You are one of us and you should feel and behave as such.” [ Note that in Hindu tradition any idols or pictures of the deities are arranged facing east. ]
I said, “Okay.“
[ He then gave me a technique tailored for me. ]
I said, “Thank you very much, Thirumoolar Anna.“
After this dialogue, I came to realize what I stated in Part-1, that we are all siblings, some older and some younger. All are learning from one another and are all equally children of the One Great Source—call it God, Muruga, Supreme Being, Stillness, or by any other name. He loves his children equally, and wants them to evolve at their own pace. He provides help in many forms whenever asked. With this dialogue, my confusion vanished; fears vanished. Reverence and love remained.
This dialogue also revealed to me that both Mahavatar Babaji and Siddhar Thirumoolar are my gurus, my brothers, my kinsmen. I may have been part of the Siddha tradition for many lifetimes. It may have been a cosmic plan for this life where I came to know Babaji and Thirumoolar in that particular order. I believe that there is a cosmic plan for everyone of us incarnated on this planet and it will be revealed at the right time and the right place.
I hope that this article helped you to clarify some of the questions you may have about guru-disciple relationship—it is based on love and respect, but not on fear, clinging or sycophantic behavior. A True Guru always points you to your highest potential that is within you. Best wishes to you for your unique journey.