The Teacher of Wisdom series continues with Guru Purnima, ‘The Celebration of the Teacher’, as it is known to Tantrics and Yogins. It takes places yearly on the July Full Moon 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 and effort that the teacher 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 effort to surpass oneself and attain the hights of wisdoms 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 above all for the subject that is represented. The element of devotion exists within all as the Guru Tatva. This is the element that drives us to achieve successes and overcome obstacles, but the Guru Tatva is more than just this.
The true essence of the Guru Tatva is a one pointed focus on a branch of wisdom. A wisdom that stands outside of rewards of personal satisfaction and a learning and devotion which 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, passed down the ages in unbroken lines. 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 being that the Guru represents someone who passes on a line of teaching and has as their main interest the passing on of the wisdom and the development of his students. This is quite a difference of focus to taking credit for or indulging in praise at the accomplishment. In India it is said that a true Guru lives for their students, which defines their role as a teacher.
Upon the Full Moon of July we come to the time honoured tradition of Guru Purnima. Upon this day the astral forces are strong for setting the Guru Tatva within us into motion.
There are many types of teachings that we recieve in life, some are sweet and some are bitter. Sometimes the Guru is an elder or a person of wise council. Sometimes the teacher comes in the form of a fiend who strips us painfully to the bone.
Learning can be light and fun, but it can also be heavily tiresome, full with laborious interminable tedium. This is the type of learning that Saturn presents us. His is an aged and deeply applied form of learning. The results of his type of application, is a profound and penetrating insight into the depths.
We might not feel such an attraction to the old-school mode of meandering over manuscripts and stretching the attention span beyond the hops and jumps it might be used to. Saturn is the planet that takes one to the very depths. It is the planet of Yogin, who requires an attention span that traverses infinity, if (s)he is to touch the depth of the soul.
Saturn breaks through the superficial layers. As we approach him, we gather a deep love for the magical discipline he proposes. In his realm, discipline turns from laborious interminable tedium into an art of profound and timelessly magical devotion.
If we find ourselves rushing around, nervous, hungry, restless and tense, we will at the same time find ourselves empty and bereft of personal power.
The great Guru Saturn is Shuni, and this name of his that Tantrics know him by, means the one who crushes. Guru means the heavy one, possessed with the penetrating weight to go to the roots of things.
On this nights ritual, we shall be working with solidity, weight and value.
If something has weight, it has substance, depth and reality. The light and wispy life, dries up into an empty husk. The heavy Guru Saturn, brings the nourishing weight of the grain that we should be harvesting if we are to avoid spiritual malnourishment.
These words are hard, but Saturn is even harder. He is the weight that makes the Diamond.
It is a day
for remembering the elders
and those that have given to us
the gifts and fruits of their labours.
In darkness and candle light we will come together in a healing circle of power and practice rituallistically methods of Tantric Asanas (postures), Pranayam (breathwork), Mudras (gestures), and Mantras (sacred emotional syllables & sounds) whic awaken trance like states & dream-like experiences in which deep healing and psychic unwinding occurs.