Disciple’s Experience: Guruji’s Presence
At Guruj’s birthday celebration in Antioch this month, there was no lack of devotees, devotion, incredible food or the sweet nectar of Ma’s and Guruji’s shakti. As the ceremony progressed I could not help but fall into deep meditation, hardly able to participate in the ceremony in an outward sense. Finally, after the bija mantra meditation we were to go up to do a brief individual puja to Guruji’s murti (statue) and sandals.
As I moved closer to the murti I thought, “Nobody but myself, not even my guru, can remove the final barrier to merge with God that is pure awareness itself.” Over the years I have experienced a spontaneous form of self-inquiry that would arise in deep meditation at my heart center. My sense of self would merge with a deeper sense of pure awareness and then dissolve into a tiny point at the top of the head; then this source point of original awareness would dissolve into the infinite expanse for a moment before all perception ceased. A single, minimal thought of “I am” would cause creation to resume and consciousness to again identify with its own self-reflexive illusion of separation.
Suddenly I realized that God can and does take the entire being of the devotee, not just the soul, and absorbs every last particle…
These experiences led me to understand that there is no such thing as the soul merging in anything other than itself. Ultimately we must all deal with the illusion of separation alone. In other words, God can only truly be reached within. This realization sometimes leaves me feeling aloof and with no desire for thoughts or actions of any kind. This aloof feeling grew very strong as I came closer to Guruji’s murti. My eyes closed as I sat in front of the murti, and liquid light filled my vision and entire body. I felt Guruji’s presence magnified 1,000 fold and I felt not just my soul or subtle energy but my entire body enveloped into His body through that of the murti.
Suddenly I realized that God can and does take the entire being of the devotee, not just the soul, and absorbs every last particle; and I realized this form of self-realization is equally as valid as self-inquiry. One can be in the waking state in a form of deep meditation yet with the senses somehow active and merge completely with God, who is Guru in the felt sense.
This is why Dhyanyogi is also Krishna, because we can reach Him through the form or formless practice. The guru is the repository of knowledge, yet one can simply meditate on him or her and reach the final goal without having to understand any philosophy or scripture.