is a sacred night in the Yogic calendar.
‘Tis a full Moon of giving honour
to the teachers and the elders
who guide us on the path of wisdom.
The sweetness and ruthlessness of the elder perspective of the Guru is the Bhaav (mood) with which the Guru Moon is approached.
Upon this night, the astral forces are strong for setting the Guru Tatva within us into motion.
It is a day for remembering the elders and those that have given to us the gifts and fruits of their love.
Fruits and gifts given in love awaken fruits and gifts of love within us… Love is magnetic.
The Purnima (Full Moon) of the Month of Ashadha, is known to the Yogins as Guru Purnima.
This is the ‘The Celebration of the Teacher’, and it has been reserved since aeons to give honour, not only to the personalities of one’s teachers, but also to the principle of devotion that the Guru represents.
The Guru is the inner quality that we all possess.
The quality of attention to detail and unwavering voyage into the depths of a single subject.
This Tapasya (Yogic effort) to surpass oneself, and sink to the very depths of wisdom, is said to come from the Guru Tatva.
Tatva can be translated as ‘element’.
The Guru Tatva implies ‘weight’ and ‘heaviness’.
The word Guru is often defined in various ways according to modern custom, but the root of the Sanskrit word means ‘ heavy’, whereas the word denoting the aspirant means ‘light’.
A great weight is required to ground wisdom.
To follow the austerity to accomplish any profound skill in a single subject takes weight, and so the Guru represents a weighted immovable force that stands in devotion for the subject that is represented. The subject of the Guru is wisdom… it is sacred wisdom.
Love and sacred wisdom is one and the same…
The element of devotion exists within all as the Guru Tatva.
This is the element that guides us from the depths.
It is the element that overcomes all obstacles that stand in the way of the sacred wisdom of love.
The true essence of the Guru Tatva is a one pointed focus on wisdom.
The wisdom of the Guru Tatva is hidden deep behind the surface rewards of personal satisfaction. It is a learning and devotion that differs from the drives of sentimental ambition.
The Guru Tatva aligns the human instrument to very subtle layers of reality.
The art of the Guru is often learned and devoted to from early childhood, and passed down the ages in unbroken lines known as Parampara.
Our society may give credit to all manner of attainments and skills.
The contemporary development of contest shows and a culture of awards to actors and musicians may make it seem like a common place thing to honour those within developed ranges of skill.
The difference is that the Guru represents someone who passes on a line of teaching, and has as their main interest the passing on wisdom to the student.
This is quite a difference of focus to taking credit for, or accepting praise at ones accomplishment.
In India it is said that a true Guru lives for their student. It is this which defines their role as teacher.
A STORY WITHIN
Shiva is known as the Adi Guru, and is legendarily revered as the first Guru.
Adi meaning ‘first’ or ‘origin’.
Shiva had been absorbed in Samadhi for unknown ages, and was discovered in a hidden Himalayan cave by 7 Seekers of wisdom.
When they approached Shiva, he roused from deep Yogic absorption and was asked by the 7 seekers of wisdom ‘what he was doing’.
Shiva replied that he was ‘listening and watching’,
and then he went back into his meditation.
84 years passed until Shiva roused once more, only to find himself in the company of the 7 seekers of wisdom, who had been there all along attempting to imitate him.
He was pleased at their effort and granted them the secrets of Yog.
The seven seekers became the Sapt (7) Rishis of legend, who are said to have spread the Yogic arts, and inspired the scriptures.
The seven Rishis are reflected in the seven stars of the Sapt Rishi (Big Dipper constellation), and are activated upon the astral plane by the full Moon of the Guru.
It is the drive of the Guru Tatva within us that urges the 7 stars of the Chakras to balance within us through the Yogic art of listening and watching.
The over and under seeing Guru Tatva is brought to its full force on this annual Moon Phase. The Guru Tatva provides us with the opportunity to develop the gift of devotion.
Devotion to what?
The Guru Moon has passed the halfway mark in the lunar year, to shower it’s Moonlit gifts upon us.
A gift that is at once saturated in sweetness and also a certain ruthlessness.
Both Sweetness and Ruthlessness together are required to delve into the twilight regions of wisdom’s constellation.
One without the other might very well be a distortion of Wisdom?
Sweetness without Ruthlessness, or Ruthlessness without Sweetness is the opposite of the Guru Tatva.
This is something to ponder upon…
Esoterically, the Sapt Rishis represent the 7 Chakras within us.
The 84 years refer to the 8.4 ‘million’ different forms of life that are said to exist in Indian philosophical thought. *
The myth reveals how the Rishis who represent the 7 Chakras, came to know all levels of existence through the art of listening and watching that was imparted to them by the Adi Guru Shiva.
In the same way, the 7 Chakras within us, come to know of the vastness of existence when we take up the art of listening and watching.
- A Lakh is the Yogic numerical measurement to be precise.
WALKING WITH THE ELDERS
The ritual Moon of Guru Purnima is an age old festival day that honours the Guru.
It takes place annually in the Star constellation of Uttara-Ashada Nakshatra.
The lunar mansion of Uttara-Ashada Nakshatra gives the teaching of enduring focus.
Its focus is singular and unwavering – this is the quality of the Guru.
The Guru is an uncompromising force that endures in vision for the very deep and enduring truth at the foundation of being.
In a world of beliefs, opinions, likes, dislikes, dualistic information and endless modes of self expression of all of these, we risk the very opposite of what the deep inner teaching of Uttara-Ashada has to reveal to us.
Uttara-Ashada is the very opposite of light dispersing action.
Guru is an adjective that means heavy.
The Guru is just like the solid grounded Elephant energy that is the prominent earthly expression of Uttara-Ashada Nakshatra.
Just like the weight of memory possessed by an Elephant.
Uttara-Ashada gives power to ancient & timeless memory.
Uttara-Ashada reminds us of the heavy foundations at the roots of being.
The Guru is an elder of soul
who carries timeless & ageless wisdom.
The wisdom of the Guru is the elder base of wisdom.
It is grounded power and maturity.
We live in a culture where the elders themselves perhaps do not strive to be elders but rather to emulate the tones of youth.
A mass cultural fabric that does not honour the heavy weighted wisdom of age may indeed be a culture that banishes the Guru altogether.
The sacred weight of mature vision is something that is needed in all branches of life, and is not exclusive to Tantra.
Politics, technology, agriculture and both secular and spiritual life are places where the foundation of being is as much needed as in any branch of life.
When we banish the roots of being, the fruit fails.
CODES OF TANTRA
The codes of Tantra revolve not around the teacher as a personality or a celebrity, but as an imparter of techniques.
To be able hold some of those Tantric techniques, indeed takes great power and weight.
Tantra understands that the heavy quality and presence of the Guru is of utmost importance.
The heavy Guru has a heavy vision that must stand for solidity, and look only to the real weight of the student.
The Guru is strict about practices and the regulations of living.
The codes of Tantra are very much like digging a deep hole in one place in the search for water.
For that, focus, regulations and consistency is a necessity.
Spreading out ones life force can be a great distraction and detriment on the path of Tantra.
Many half dug holes lead to what?
There are many channels available to feed our life force into.
Maybe we ourselves are the creators of an audience that we spend our energy upon?
Sometimes we spend our energy in trying to correct the evils of life… there is always something wrong we can find to put our focus upon trying to correct.
Sometimes the wish to correct that which is around us, can be a very real flight away from looking deeply within ourselves.
What we resist outside, often has a lot to do with what our inner themes are, and can provide a key to unravel the sacred heart if we introvert our externalised forces.
The strictness of the Guru is very much about bringing us to internalise our focus.
If one is to come to their true deep weight, Tapasya is a requirement.
Tapasya is an inner weight of love that occurs when we bring all our forces into one place.
The Guru stands in the same place always for the Tapasya that sinks with the weight of love.
We might make many journeys in our life, but it is said that the Guru will always be in the same immovable eternal place. Waiting there for us.
The place of the Guru is a deep pondering to be meditated upon under the Moon of Guru Purnima.
Where is the place of the Guru?
Flimsy light weighted abstractions, and clever escapisms, pale in the presence of the Guru.
Laghoo is a Sanskrit word for ‘aspirant’, which means ‘lightness’.
The Guru in his vision might not tolerate and even overlook the light, flimsy and superficial aspects of our character.
The Guru puts heavy focus upon the deeper self that is locked in the very weight of our being.
If we are used to living in empty vanities and airy realities, the mere presence of the Guru can at times be painfully and heavily oppressive.
If we are to follow the teachings of Tantra with sincere focus, it does not allow for indulgence in superficiality and escapism.
The Tantric way is the way of the weight of reality and truth.
Sometimes seeing and swallowing the Truth is bitter.
But sweetening the bitter taste is not an entertainment
that Tantra in its original sense will offer us.
GAZE OF THE GURU
INSIGHT INTO INNER SIGHT
The strict insight of the Guru is timed with reality.
The gaze might appear as unbending, but the Guru’s eyes are firmly focused upon the optimal power and potential of each and every moment.
This is a vision that takes great stamina and integrity of being.
This is the weight that awakens the weight of the Guru Tatva.
The weight of the Guru is within each person.
The practice of Tantra has a strict form that becomes the Guru.
If one is to engage in ritual successfully, there is to be no sidestepping – light wishful thinking and good intentions do not drive the car.
One must put the foot on the pedal of Tantra. It is a pedal that takes some weight to press.
That is the weight of the Guru.
The true inner and outer teacher wants us to drive the car of life power, and not sit back lightly and hypothesize about life.
Whether the teacher is our own inner rooted power, or an actual outer guide, the essence of the Tantric teacher is weight.
What blocks the Teacher from coming close?
The teacher can not reach us if we are in the habit of defense.
When we suffer the habit of defense, even unto our own heart, then we close off the reception of Wisdom.
Defense fades as trust grows, by learning to uncover and trust our innate power, we open ourselves to love.
Tantra is not really the learning of new wisdom, but rather the unfoldment of our innate wisdom, by a process of practical study, we come to see the coverings upon our innate wisdom – and can then apply ourselves to a process of excavating the treasure of inner wisdom.
What is the inner treasure?
THE ELDER VISION
AN ANCIENT REMINDER
The Guru is a reminder that the fruit and the root belong together.
The Northern node of the Moon is known as Rahu and the Southern Lunar mode is known as Ketu.
The Ancient stories of India mythologize that they were once a single being.
The cut that divided them turned them into head and tail.
They are regarded as inauspicious energies, and they have much to teach us about the nature of wisdom and the lunar opposites.
Rahu is the head that consumes all and anything without any regard.
It is never satisfied, and it does not discriminate between the quality of the quantity that it takes in.
Of course the consequences are registered by Ketu the tail.
Neither are inauspicious energies when we learn the maturity of adequate intake.
When adequate intake is a hallmark of our lives, then the reception at the tail end of lunar influence… is another matter than bearing the consequences of indiscriminate consumption.
The consumption of ideas, of beliefs, of principles and of course of food, all follow the laws and consequences of nutrition.
The real elder vision does not seek to emulate any pervasive cultural ideas.
The elder vision does not strive for expressions imbued with the power of youth and ideology.
The elder vision is the vision that unifies the North and the South, after having learned of the consequences of having separated cause and effect… or consumption and consequence.
This is the lesson that brings Rahu and Ketu into a unified and whole being.
They had to be parted to learn the lessons of the laws of consequences.
This is the law of Karma in action – written and reflected in the stars.
How do we unify these forces?
By slowing down the vision to an ‘Elder Perspective’ that through the viewing of the passage of time, pauses to look at what we are doing and creating.
Tantric ritual is an attempt to move to the elder mature vision, and not stay only in the leaps and springs of youth.
The leaps and springs of youth have their necessity and power, but when they endure as a measure of being for too long, they outstay their use – then the elder vision is lost and maturity can not ripen in the garden of the soul.
THE LINK IN THE CHAIN OF WISDOM
Tantra is a wisdom tradition
that entails strict codes
that are handed on
in unbroken lines
from teacher to student.
The teacher is the link
in the chain of Tantra.
The original Tantric practices are themselves the Teacher that lead us to the Darshan (vision) of the Guru Tatva.
In the Tantric tradition, the teacher is no job, but a way of life.
Those who go forward and become teachers in the initiatic lines of Tantra must undergo extreme initiation rituals where failure is measured by physical death…
So extreme is the Tapasya to take the seat of the Guru.
Such rituals are to teach – or rather prepare them for a life that belongs more to their students than it does to themselves.
The axiom in Tantra
is that our lives are not given for ourselves
but for others.
The sacrifices of a true Guru go unseen and know no bounds.
Sacrifices motivated by the weight of Love.
So, who is the real teacher?
The real teacher is the one who is able to look beyond the characters that we think we are, and see who we really are – beneath the library and archives of personal history that lay upon our souls.
The Love of the teacher is not sentimental, but is a visionary love that looks into the reality of who one really is.
The Guru’s role is not to satisfy and please the student by giving what the student wants.
Often the Guru must show the student that which they do not want to see.
For those blind spots are where the true self lays buried like a precious underground treasure.
A strict love indeed… but a love that forgives time and again, and holds a profound and enduring patience.
The teacher can seem like they do not care.
Maybe they do not care for the skin and surface of our being, but rather for the one within and behind the costumes and uniforms of character.
TANTRA IS THE TEACHER
The Guru waits eternally for all those who venture to the wisdom of love.
The Guru is the living beating ritual.
Traveling towards the Guru, is to travel through Tantric practices of wisdom, and unfold the living & beating myths of infinity.
Myths move in the circles that we walk and link together in the eternal sequence of love.
Connecting to the principle of the inner wise one, who takes us deep into the cave of our heart… is the Tantric path that the Guru beckons us on with the left hand.
The Guru revelas the vision that makes us aware of the spirits of the unconscious world that colour and dream our visible lives into being.
Tantra is the Teacher.
As we uncover wisdom’s face, we may find the hidden games and strategies we play to banish wisdom from our hearts and lives.
Wisdom requires the death of many things.
We might have got used to make others less than ourselves in our hearts and minds.
We might have got used to make ourselves less than others in our hearts and minds.
What games and strategies must fade in the gaze of wisdom?
We might have come to believe
that the unseen & unknown has no measurable value.
We might have taken the stance
to critically stand above things
as a way to navigate through life.
In the face of uncovering wisdom, such things may come to our attention…
Such attitudes really isolate us from learning anything, and such attitudes fade as the mask is taken away from wisdoms face.
These attitudes are based on traumas that have their roots in self protection.
The dropping away of self protection does not mean that one abandons their dignity. The Guru wants us to keep our dignity, while losing our self defense against wisdom. This is the state of empowerment, where subservience and self abnegation does not enter.
Like many words of the ancient Tantric vocabulary, Guru has been transposed across cultures and taken on a somewhat negative connotation in modern times.
Guru may be synonymous with the imposter who uses his power to exploit others.
This is indeed a pity and an anomaly of a sacred word and principle.
There may be those who set themselves up in such ways as they break into the Western market.
Tantra has never attempted to break into any market, though a click and scroll through contemporary pages might show us differently.
Again another word… ‘Tantra’… has become well used in modern times and taken out of context… perhaps used, exploited and cheapened dishonorably.
The notion of the Guru upon the pedestal, or the stage, is a deep rooted one.
Giving our responsibility away is an ancient maneuver that we find not only in spirituality, but in many walks of life… in health, education and nutrition to name a few.
The Tantric teacher is a friend who walks the path in the name of Tantra.
The Tantric, no matter how seasoned and weathered by wisdom, strictly opposes the pedestal and platform and joins the teaching that gets ever heavier the deeper one goes.
True wisdom is imparted on the level of the friend of heart.
Masters may make disciples, but Tantrics make friends.
THE HEAVY ONE
SATURIAN WEIGHT & FOCUS
Guru means ‘the heavy one’. Guru is an adjective that means Heavy. It is popularly and modernly translated as ‘the one who brings one from darkness to light’.
This is a perhaps a Christian inflection upon the principle of Guru.
In-fact, this could be said to be a reversal of meaning.
The Guru is linked to the grand teacher of the Tantric’s
This is Shunidev, the planet Saturn.
He reveals that which lays in the dark.
The stories of Shuni tell how he is the child of sun and shadow, who with his dark, weighty underworld gaze, even caused the sun to blacken into a dark crispy shadow of his former self.
Saturn is just like the Guru who has the ability to take away all visible and known light within us, and take us into the parts of ourselves that have previously not been seen.
Tantric methods themselves act like the Guru who can eclipse the solar vision and make us aware of the spirits of the unconscious world that colours our visible lives from behind the scenes.
By seeing and addressing these forces, they are brought to the altar of the soul for Karmic resolving and healing… this is exactly what the weight of the Guru stands for.
Just like Saturn, the Guru brings us to our deep inner weight.
The Guru is like the heavy dark planet indeed, and brings us to our deep inner weight.
What is that weight?