Spiritual life is a playful interaction between a seeker and the spiritually evolved. In this, one has to offer and the other has to accept. The one who offers, accepts back again and the one who accepts, offers back again. In this interaction, one is known as the Guru and the other is known as the disciple (shishya). No part of worldly life is an exception to this either.
However, in the spiritual and religious aspects of life, the relationship between Guru and shishya is more pronounced. Its medium is speech as well as literature. The one, who has compiled, subject-wise consolidated, category-wise classified, planned and created a self sustaining structure for this literature in a very powerful, universal and ideal way; is known by the name, ‘Shrī Vyās. By doing this, He acquires the highest honor of being the ‘Universal Sadguru‘ (Guru with a spiritual level above 85%), in the hearts of the people. He is constantly offering (knowledge and guidance) to the universe through His everlasting literary works. He has a thousand hands (offering knowledge).
Vyāspourṇimā, which is popularly known as Gurupourṇimā, is celebrated so that the recipient of this knowledge does not fall short in his ability to receive it, and so that he preserves the tradition of expressing his gratitude for it. God Shrī Vyās is knowledge personified. The seat of Shrī Vyās (vyāspeeth), is one which is prepared by God Shrī Vyās by: pouring His knowledge into it, strengthening it with the two legs of karma (action) and bhakti (devotion), and firming it up with the base of yog (discipline)!
Those who have acquired the privilege of taking a seat at this vyāspeeth are called Shrī Sadguru. Gurupourṇimā is a great moment, which gives one the opportunity to offer gratitude and pay obeisance to such a Sadguru, for the everlasting flow of the divine nectar of knowledge. The donor, Shrī Sadguru, offers incessantly, whereas the receiver accepts only in parts. Even this small bit causes a revolution in the life of a receiver. Life progresses towards a sense of gratitude. The one who is aware of this will definitely experience the awakening of his ‘gratitude intellect.’ A golden moment to express this gratitude is Gurupourṇimā.
The importance of sacrifice (tyāg) and service to the truth (satsēvā) on the occasion of Gurupourṇimā
A gradual sacrifice of body, mind and wealth is necessary for rapid spiritual growth. The mind is sacrificed through chanting, the body through physical service unto truth (satsēvā) and wealth through donation (arpaṇ). The most appropriate donations are to Saints.
Our give and take account of previous births is responsible for financial problems in this life, such as obstacles in business, illness, never being able to hold on to money, etc. Many such problems get solved by offering donations to Saints. Most seekers experience this hence they make donations at different Holy places.
One needs to sacrifice everything to attain God. To attain this objective, one needs to increase sacrifice stepwise. Reducing our attachments is more important than how much one has actually donated. For example, it is more important to donate $100 when we have just $100, than to donate $10,000 when we have millions.
The Guru principle is a 1000 times more active on the day of Gurupourṇimā than on any other day. Hence we get more spiritual experiences (anubhūtīs) and receive more of the Guru’s blessings when we perform satsēvāand sacrifice on the occasion of Gurupourṇimā, than on any other day or for any other spiritual programme.
The importance of sacrifice of wealth during our spiritual practice and its effects
The overall importance of donation in one’s spiritual practice is as follows:
It helps to settle give and take accounts.
The process of undergoing destiny and finishing it, is accelerated.
It decreases attachment to money.
Due to coming out of the great illusion (Māyā), it becomes easy to do spiritual practice.
To whom should one donate/ help financially?
Importance (in percentage)
|1. For a worldly reason e.g. a wedding||
1 to 2
|It increases one’s give and take account|
|2. For a social cause e.g. a school, hospital, etc.||
|It helps liberate one from social debt. Also one gets a little benefit due to performing spiritual practice according to the path of karma.|
|3. The Guru||
|Since a Guru is an individual (vyashṭi) representation of God, it helps a seeker to become eligible to be a disciple.|
|4. For nation and righteous (dhārmik)activities||
|An opportunity is given to get involved in righteous activities (Dharmakārya). The activities for nation and righteousness are the collective (samashṭi) representations of God. Also, these activities are important according to the current era.|