“One who, through yoga practiced correctly as one’s first duty, knows this yoga power as My very own and is not yoked by irresolution and doubt. I am the source of all that exists. Everything is set into motion from Me. Thus do the wise with the ability to meditate, worship Me.” — Lord Krishna, Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 10, Verses 7-8
Vibhuti Yoga: Power Yoga
Yoga (union) occurs when meditation has been matured through practice. When it does, you will most likely fight it because of its power, for this power is an awesome thing.
It is useless to try to practice yoga to get special powers or to have elaborate experiences if you can’t tolerate the power. Yet, thousands go to popular gurus for reasons like this, with the expectation that all should be given to them in one blow without having to do any of the work—without practicing real yoga, real meditation, and acquiring real, correct knowledge.
You may not want to seek a guru because society has taught you that to associate with gurus is to associate with cults, even though most cults stem from organized religions and insanity. This is one reason I talk about yoga as an adventure. Another reason is because it is an adventure.
All adventures have some degree of real or imagined risk. Taking a guru may be a foray into the unknown, but it is a risk you must take if you’re going to continue to grow spiritually. A guru knows the way from personal experience in meditation, the teachings of their guru lineage, and correct knowledge as found in scriptures. Without this, you can only go so far.
Many Sanskrit terms have been tweaked in order to get them into English and have lost or diluted their real meanings. The word guru is one of them.
- Guru – a teacher who can take you from darkness (gu) to light (ru).
A guru is a teacher, a teacher with a lineage of successful masters. A guru can not only teach you, but can correctly guide you. I don’t mean to say that because someone is a guru that he or she is perfect. Gurus are human, so they are not immune to error. Expecting perfection is foolish. As with any marriage, one takes the bad with the good.
Sometimes, seekers will confuse being a student with being a disciple. For the most part, anyone can become a student of a guru. Discipleship, on the other hand, is a different matter.
To become a disciple one usually has to ask the guru if he or she will accept them. The guru will either accept you as a disciple or not, and may also require something of you before agreeing to make this commitment (you are not the only one taking a risk!). The guru will want to know that you are serious and are also willing to make this commitment yourself—it’s a two-way street. You cannot be taught, and you certainly cannot be guided, if you are not serious and not willing to follow the guidance of this guru.
No real guru is going to try to control you or get you into trouble.
How do you know if a guru is the real deal or not? You may not be able to be certain about this, so any time spent before accepting you as a disciple is a good thing for you, too. If you are not already personally acquainted with this person and his or her lineage and teachings, this time gives you the opportunity to do so.
If your guru accepts you as a disciple, you must act as if this person were God incarnate—whether you like something about your guru or not, whether you like what you hear or not, whether you want to do what is required of you or not. You will inevitably run into these kinds of situations because you are being guided in such a way as to reach something that is beyond your previous experience. so it is going to be unfamiliar. This is what makes it an adventure.
You would not be interested in being a disciple unless you believed that this guru could get you where you want to go, to something that you don’t already know, to some place you have never been. It is a journey into the unknown, so of course these things will come up. You will best serve yourself by ignoring your mind’s objections and just going forward anyway. You can’t have a good adventure without risking the unknown.
Can you get hurt? Of course you can. You can get hurt by anyone. Haven’t you ever been in love and gotten hurt before? You were willing to take a chance on that relationship, so why would you resist a guru-disciple relationship that has the potential to take you to real love and eternal happiness?
I am a long-term renegade, but I thought it would be worth the risk, and it has. I have been payed so many times over I couldn’t begin to tell you. So why wouldn’t you seek out your guru?
Namaste (I bow to the divine one you really are),