The Guru’s moon. While Baba was in his body, Guru Pūrnimā, the full moon in July, was celebrated with thousands of people paying their respects to Baba. At this time of year, Ganeshpuri experiences the monsoon. We would hear the rain coming and run under the overhangs on the buildings. The weather may have been brutal, but it did not stop anyone from having the opportunity to pranam to Baba.
Now that Baba is no longer in his body, Guru Pūrnimā is not only about remembering the times we were with Baba. This is a time to revitalize our sādhana. This is a time to sharpen our awareness that Baba is alive and in everyone. This is a time to examine whether Baba is in every room of our houses.
The more I practice, the more I experience that Baba is alive. When I say practice, I do not mean the regular chanting and puja we performed in the ashram. Practice, for me, can be and is performed wherever I am; practice is internal. After Baba took mahasamadhi, I waited until Ian was born in Bombay and for him to get strong enough to travel to return to America. Once back in the States, I found myself in an environment that did not encourage or support any of the culture we had been immersed in all those years with Baba.
Whatever God does, He does for good. Baba was always pushing me to learn not to entangle internal practice with outside action. He was always teaching me not to attach my vehicles to the practice. Being in a place that did not accept the outer expressions of sādhana encouraged me to hone my inner practice. No matter what I was doing or saying, I worked to practice.
So as the Guru Pūrnimās passed, Baba became more and more alive for me. He is still here for all of us. He has not left. In the last fifteen years I have been able once again to openly acknowledge my Guru, Swami Muktānanda. Baba does not need me to praise him; this is for me. Acknowledging the one that gave me life and showed me the way back to God is for every disciple. Baba modeled that for us.
Baba always gave credit to his Guru, Nityānanda. We are to do the same; we are to honor our Guru. Focusing on who gave us the most important gift helps us from losing that very gift. The small self wants to take ownership of what each of us has received. When that happens, the gift is made shallow and empty: what Baba gave us becomes a shrunken memory rather than a vital truth.
With this Guru Pūrnimā let us share with each other the Truth that Baba shared and continues to share. God dwells with us as us. God dwells within the Heart. We are to rest there and emanate from there. There is no better tribute to the Guru than to imbibe and manifest what he taught. Baba loved each of us; we were to be ourselves. We are to continue to remove the obstacle of wrong understanding, of wrong identification with the small self, so that we truly live how our Guru wants us to live: in God, in Guru, as Love.
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