Guru’s Guidance to a Disciple
At the sacred vow called the Mantra-Diksha, my guru Swami Kripalvanandji (Bapuji) accepted me as his disciple and gave me the Margadharshan. It provides guidance of how to affect improvement in life and make it a good character with purity of mind and sacredness of attitude. Each disciple gets it at his sanctification through the ritual of the Mantra Diksha. It details on the guruji’s spiritual ideas and vision of sacred life. A disciple is expected to follow the guruji’s guidance to discipline his mind and make his life worth. It may also lead him further to attain elevation of soul.
The Margadharshan is available originally in Gujarati. But its English version is given below for a purpose of non-Gujarati readers who shows curiosity in guruji’s spiritual ideas. It is hoped that it will generate positive impact on readers and impart them some kind of solution to improve a person’s living, thinking, attitude and approach to life.
Ekeshwarvad / The Doctrine of Monotheism:
“God is ONE and He manifests Him to us in diverse divine forms.”
I keep faith that the god is ONE. Hence, I never hesitate or even deny to utter god’s different names like Shri Rama, Shri Krishna, Shri Shiva, etc. The reason is that GOD IS ONE and He bears thousands of different names. So we know God by thousands of names. We offer our prayers and worship to His thousand different names. On just uttering any of these names with total love and devotion, man’s all sins and deficiencies are put to end. In that sense, I pay honour to all innumerable forms of the Eternal Almighty. For no reason, any form of Great God appears displeasing to me. Thus, I take all the names of god as pious and sacred, and I take all the forms of god as adorable and worthy of worship. So no person should criticize or hate any of God’s names and forms, no matter it belongs to a different faith or sect. All the cults and faith in the world merge in to the sacred feet of God, Shri Prabhuji. Therefore, hating or denouncing any faith or cult, or any saint or sage, or any scripture or faith can not be anything else but like gross ignorance of Great God.
Shri Guru Bhakti! / Devotion to the Guru:
To a disciple, Shri Sadguru is the God incarnate. He serves him the Divine Presence on the earth. Believing it, a true disciple should keep unshaken faith in his guru and offer him his incessant love and devotion. It is like his offering to God’s sacred feet. He should surrender his total being to God. Such disciples are capable of swimming across the great sea of worldly sins and attain ultimate devotion to Great God. For that purpose, he has to serve his guru with all sentiments free of any ill-will and with all enthusiasm offering everything, his physical being (tana), mental attitude (mana) and wealth (dhana). It brings about purification of his “mind and his ego too. Those who do not keep unshaken faith in his guru’s purity and sanctity and deny to follow his guiding words, they can not be counted as true disciples. Those disciples who deny guru’s inevitable help in his efforts to realize god are believed to be infected with arrogance. If such a person hates his guru or denies his need and help and betrays his dharma, he is said to be a betrayer to Great God.
Iiaritryavidhanl / Cultivating Character:
(1) One should show love and compassion to all animals. He must not envy anyone.
(2) He should always utter words that are truthful, pleasing, and beneficial to others so that his words do not hurt a listener in any way. One should prefer to speak the minimum and as the situation demands he should prefer to
(3) One should never indulge in stealing and should never hide a lie.
(4) Following a disciple receives the Mantra Diksha, he has to observe celibacy at least for a period of one year and three months. If he finds it difficult to do immediately, he has to determine to observe celibacy at a convenient time in life; and during that time he has to observe possible control while he lives through a phase of domesticity following marriage (Grihasthashrama).
(5) Disciples who have received sacred vow, mantradiksha from a gurushould take diet once in a day and make sure that food he takes is simple, minimum and nourishing to body. Beyond it, he can take little milk twice, in the morning and in the evening. He should keep away from non-vegetarian food like mutton, etc. He has to get rid of addiction of any kind like drinking wine or ‘bhang’, taking to cocaine, opium, tobacco, tea, snuff, etc. One sanctified with the mantradiksha has to observe fast on seven days in a Hindu month that include four Thursdays, two eleventh days of the ‘shukla’ and the krishna’ fortnights (ekadashi) and the full moon day. He should observe this practice at least for a period of one year and three months from the day of the mantradiksha. It would be better if he can continue this practice all through his life.
(6) If it is possible, one should take bath with cold water at least three times in a day. He has to ensure with conscious efforts physical cleanliness and purity. He should ever avoid taking a nap during a day. He should go to bed not later than ten o’clock at night and ensure to get up in the morning as early as at four o’clock. He should ensure to maintain this routine.
(7) In order to avoid or curb worldly instincts like the Rajoguna, pleasure-loving instincts and the Tamoguna, the base instincts that give way to six human weaknesses like sex (kama), anger (krodh), greed (lohhd), passion (moha), arrogance (mada), evilness (matsar) and also to ensure protection to health and fitness, he should practice asanas, bodily postures at least for thirty minutes daily in the morning and also in the evening. Practicing bodily postures enables to him virya-raksha, preserving bio-energy or strength. A practice of the pranayama makes him eligible for higher goal.
(8) Hence, he should practice three types of pranayama daily in the morning, in the afternoon and in the evening, the first type of pranayama for a round of fifteen repetitions, the second type of pranayama uttering the divine name ‘Rama’ for five times and the third type of pranayama uttering the divine ‘OUM’ too for five times. In the first type of the pranayama, one should practice the kumbhak, blocking the breath inside the cavity as long as he can do it. While doing it, he should constantly utter in his mind the Gurumantra, “II Oum namah bhagavate vasudevaya II”.
(9) A disciple once sanctified with the mantradiksha should count ten times a round of one hundred and eight beads, mala uttering the Gurumantra Oum namah bhagavate vasudevaya. On days he observes fast he may increase the count. Further, during the Hindu months of the Maghashirsh or Magashar, Sharavan and the adhik, an additional month in a Hindu year, he should observe fast on all days and utter the Gurumantra repeatedly for a count of one lakh and twenty five thousand.
Mantras / Verses:
Shri Krishna! Govind! Hare! Murare!
He natha! Narayana! Vasudeva!
Hare! Rama! Hare! Rama! Rama! Rama! Hare! Hare!
Hare! Krishna! Hare! Krishna! Krishna! Krishna! Hare! Hare!
Rama! Raghav! Rama! Raghav! Rama!Raghav! Raksha ! Mam!
Krishna! Keshav! Krishna! Keshav! Krisha! Keshav! Pahi! Mam!
Hari! Hari! Bol, Hari! Hari! Bol,
Mukund! Madhav! Govind! Bol.
He should keep ever uttering these great mantras. These great mantras can be uttered even in conditions that may be most impure. For the purpose of self-learning (swadhyaya), he should always read and ponder over the Gjaneshawari Bhagavad Gita. He should also memorize the following verses from Shrimad Bhagavad Gita:
- The Second Canto: Sankhya Yoga: verses 54 to 72.
- The Twelfth Canto: Bhakti Yoga: all verses.
- The Fifteenth Canto: Shri Purushottam Yoga: all verses.
- The Sixteenth Canto: Shri Daivasurasampad Yoga: all verses.
He should recite all these verses daily. Daily in the morning, he should also recite the Brahmacharya Bavani that he has memorized. Daily he should sing prayers and bhajan (devotional songs). Daily he should read the scripture and sacred books and ponder over the preaching they impart. Daily he should listen to the preaching that sages and saints deliver to people.
(10) He should daily practice dhyana (meditation) of four types. He should practice more and with special interest the type of meditation that he likes most and suits him most. In the first month, he should practice that type of meditation increasing a minute or two more on a usual time. He should increase the time gradually to duration of fifteen minutes (a quarter of an hour). Like this, he should add to the time fifteen minutes more every month. In this way, he should attain progress in meditation (Sadhana). In a time of one year and three months, he should raise his capacity to meditate sitting erect constantly for three hours at least.
A disciple should read this Margadarshan every Thursday.
In the state of affection for you and with a view to ensure your well-being, I am imparting to you this valuable preaching and introductions that my able guru imparted to me for the sake of my well-being. Jai Bhagawan!
Your beloved Bapuji Kripalvanand
Printed by: Ramanlal Nanalal Shah, Ashok Printary, Raopura, Vadodara.
Published: Swamiji Kripalvanandji Pustak Prakashan Nidhi.
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