Let us begin with a paradox. My spiritual guide is the one who is supposed to bring me from darkness into light. Since he/she is truly enlightened, I must submit entirely and let go. Yet in this world we see a large number of people suffering the consequences of such a surrender. They wander in the dark alleyways of the spiritual path for an entire lifetime.
If I don’t give in I don’t awaken and if I do, I don’t know when I am lost.
The answer to this paradox is fortunately provided in our scriptures as well. Once we know the correct interpretations, we cannot be misled.
Let me quote a very important portion of a sloka from an Indian scripture
” Shabath Guru surat dhunn chelaa..”
This refers to the Guru or guide who shall help you cross the ocean of the world. But this guide is within. Shabath is the awakened divinity or power of the Divine within. It is the inherent infinity in everyone, even in atheists. The sloka explains that the true Guru or guide is the awakened omniscience inside i.e the ‘shabath’. The word ‘Chelaa’ implies the follower. You become the true follower once you experience this awakening inside through Bhakti or the yoga of complete surrender. It is clear now that surrender is not to an external power or person, rather to the very divinity inside each one of us.
However, the fact is that all the scriptures are written in allegory and metaphor and the languages are also not modern. Therefore, it isn’t possible for a person to read the scripture or its translation and really comprehend the truth.
Therefore a human teacher is needed who is truly awakened and helps us to understand the scripture in its true import.
In many scriptures, especially in the Indian tradition, this guide is mentioned as ‘Satguru’. He /she is the one who interprets the scriptures and helps you on your path. It is clearly mentioned that such a person is worthy of reverence. That is no rocket science because how can I learn anything from someone whom I can’t respect?
However, the word ‘Satguru’ in many contexts, especially where surrender is mentioned refers not to the person guiding us, but to God inside. The sloka has to be interpreted in the context.
Therefore, please do not be misled and be careful. The true Guru is inside. Your own sub-conscience, your own sixth sense. That is the ultimate guide. This is where you can safely let go.
Develop that and the right person; the right path will unfold in all its glory.
Many blessings to all who read.