Betrayal of Trust-2

If your guru teaches you to stay away from anger but you see him shouting, he’s a hypocrite. If you sense greed and selfishness in him, if you see him telling lies while he asks you to practice the truth, he’s a hypocrite. When, even though, he preaches love and compassion, but, no matter what the cause, if his buildings, ashrams are more important to him than the wellbeing and welfare of those who look up to him, he’s a hypocrite. Please open your eyes and wake up. Abandon him. Don’t accept the wrong just because your guru is doing it. And , that leads to an extremely important point: what is wrong?

When what they say is not what they do, it’s wrong. For example, if Osho slept with a woman, I wouldn’t call it wrong because he never said he didn’t. If Ramdev did, however, I would flag it as misconduct because he says he’s a celibate. So long as their actions match their words, I don’t see a betrayal. When your guru is open and honest, they are not wrong then, even if you disagree with them. At that time, you have the choice to stay or go. And, by open and honest, I don’t mean they have to hand you their personal diary (unless they ask you for yours). If their actions or conduct doesn’t sit well with you, move on. Because, not everything needs to be judged and just like you, your guru too is entitled to have a life of his own.

Having said that, I can tell you what is wrong regardless of how liberal your guru may be or how spiritual the situation may seem. When people are hurt, abused, molested, or mistreated, it’s always wrong. Always. When you are asked to lie to fellow followers for any cause whatsoever, it’s always wrong. When your guru tells you his way is the only way, it’s the biggest lie. When you see wrong, don’t put up with it and don’t just leave. Speak up. Learn to trust your inner voice. Not all gurus are bad though. Even in this day and age where many of them are crooks, there are plenty of honest and good gurus too. If you walk the path sincerely, Nature will arrange for a guru in your life. Take my word for it.

Before you accept someone as your guru, take your time. Examine him or her thoroughly. Repeatedly. Pointedly. Only take them as your guru if you absolutely accept what they represent and want to become like them. Once you are ready, put your trust not in your guru but in what they stand for. Because, when you place your trust in a phenomenon and not just a person, when you invest your sentiments in a belief or a cause and not just its proponent, it no longer remains just trust then, it becomes faith. And, faith, unlike trust, can never be betrayed because true faith is unconditional. It’s not based on anything.

Guru is not a position of absolute power but a conduit of unreasonable compassion. He will never abuse power because he doesn’t hold any power to begin with, only love. A true guru will never tell you to tread his path blindly, instead he’ll encourage you to find your own. He’s gentle like the flowing river, warm like the winter sun, bright like the full moon, rejuvenating like the first summer rain. And, if you don’t feel gentle, warm, bright and rejuvenated yourself in his company, he’s not the right guru for you.

Om Namah Shivay

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Mind is Like Water

Your body is like a hard shell. And your mind, the inner self is like water. You are like water inside. Nature of water is cooling and flowing. But when the innermost, which is like water, is burning with jealousy, anger, frustration and all the fires you put inside, then the water boils and its cooling nature disappears.

Then how does one cool the water? Just imagine a pot and underneath are all these burning sticks. To cool the water you have to remove these sticks. All emotions are linked with people, objects and events.

Catching on to objects, people or relationships hinders freedom, liberation. You are hankering for some greater joy that is not there, not going to be there.

So, remove all this firewood and the water will become cooler. Because “cool” is the nature of water. When all these other negative stresses, burning sticks are removed, water will possess all its natural qualities — humbleness, humility, and naturalness — just like the nature of water which flows down.

In the Bhagavad Geeta, Lord Krishna talks about all the good qualities. And then He adds that they are already in you. Just like in an atom, the core is positive and the negativity is peripheral. Know that it’s not in the core.

Your nature is calmness, coolness. If it wasn’t your nature, you would never feel at home in it.

Mind means moods, thoughts, opinions, ideas, all these things that we collect. And, ‘no mind’ is meditation. Yoga, meditation and spirituality are about giving comfort to your soul and transforming all the negative tendencies in the mind.

When you meditate, you go off the influence of the mind and go into the self. The mantra of knowledge is — in this world there is no other. The mantra of love is — there is no one who doesn’t belong to me.

When the mind is free from all impressions and concepts, you are liberated. When you know that everything is changing — all relationships, people, body, feelings — suddenly the mind, which clings on to misery, comes back to you.

A fulfillment, centeredness, a subtle solid strength comes from within. Then if fame comes, money comes, it doesn’t touch you. It comes or doesn’t come, it doesn’t matter to you.


Become calm and listen to your inner self. You have the ability to bless and grant others’ wishes when the mind is serene.

Om Namah Shivay

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Religion is a part of people’s everyday lives and inspires such spirited beauty in them.

Our bus passed through a vast desert spotted with villages of earthen huts. We watched caravans of camels winding across the plain. The camels carried heavy bundles, but strutted forward effortlessly, their long necks moving slowly back and forth in perfect sync with every other limb. In the heat of the sun, nomads, their heads wrapped in turbans stained white by sun and sand, rode on camels or paced alongside their trusted animals. Here, under the clear skies of the Iranian desert, was a lifestyle completely foreign to my own. I felt I had gone back in time. As the sun rested in the western horizon, the starlit Persian night made its entrance, so still and quiet that I dozed into a dream.

Opening my eyes minutes later, I was blinded by a flash of light. Neon signs outshone the stars: Mobil, Shell, Exxon, and Texaco. It seemed we had accelerated through centuries in mere minutes, as if the bus had become a time machine.

Everyone but the driver and I were fast asleep. We had reached the outskirts of Tehran where the Shah of Iran had rolled out the red carpet to welcome foreign oil companies.  From where I sat, the city appeared as a neon-lit island floating in a sea of ancient desert.

It was in Tehran that I quietly studied the followers of Islam. Religion was so much a part of their everyday lives and seemed to inspire such beauty in their spirits. I was inspired to see the spiritual integrity of ordinary god-loving Muslims, but shook with trepidation on encountering those who practised extremism in the name of that religion. Seeking the essence of the world’s religions, I hoped to better understand.

Journeying on across the Iranian countryside, we came to Meshed, a place of pilgrimage for Shi’ite Muslims. I must have been a peculiar sight, a young American with hair draped down his back, wearing a turtleneck and pin striped jeans and sitting alone in front of a mosque intermittently reading the Koran and meditating.


Om Namah Shivay

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Dust may return to dust, but the show must go on for the spirit and it is our duty to facilitate this, so the departed can continue their journey.

How to deal with the physical remains of the dear departed? This dilemma must have teased the minds of survivors in the family since the time of Adam! In more recent times, when the Sage of Shirdi left his mortal coils, this was the big question that dragged on for days together.

Two major practices have come down the ages in this regard. These relate to burial or burning of the corpse. Both practices are guided by a common concern for the good of society and environment, as also advantage for the dead person’s spirit in the hereafter. Proper disposal of the remains post-death is the last of the 16 samskaras or nodal ceremonies enjoined upon a Hindu.

Sacred Elements

Early societies held two of nature’s elements as especially sacred: earth and fire. The preferred practice for disposal of the dead is directly related to a given tribe’s regard for these elements. Among those that held the earth as sacred, one group felt that the remains are best returned to the sacred earth; while another group felt that to lay the corpse to rest in earth would amount to defiling it. This group chose instead to consign the corpse to flames, to scatter it back to the panchatattva, five elements. Likewise, among those that held the fire as sacred, one group felt that the dead person’s remains are offered to fire — the supreme purifying agent; whereas another group felt that to burn the dead would amount to defiling the sacred fire. They chose instead to bury their departed.

Thomas Browne observes that the practice of burial or cremation has never been constant. European societies, for instance, formerly burnt their dead. This practice was gradually discarded in favour of burial as and when Europe converted to Christianity.

This points to another rationale for burial: faith in resurrection, whether for a second term in life, or as in Islam, to enable the person to rise on the 40th day in the current body to stand trial before god. In such cases, the dear departed is not buried but rather laid to rest in the earth.

There are of course other forms of disposal that have been practised: like feeding the lifeless body to birds; or consigning it to a watery grave. And there are combinations of burning and burial wherein the corpse is first burnt and then the incinerated remains placed in an urn — symbol for the womb, often designed accordingly — and buried in the earth. And, in the past, there was the practice of preserving the dead as mummies.

Om Namah Shivay

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The Well Baked Pot

If you pour water into a half baked pot, the pot becomes wasted and so does the water. If the pot is well baked and strong, then it does not matter whether you put the water into the pot or the pot into the water.

During Satsang that evening a devotee presents a beautiful hand crafted pot to Guruji. Another devotee presents a bouquet of roses. Placing the bouquet into the pot Guruji says, “If the pot is well baked, then it will hold the flowers.”

Yet another gift of sweets is given to Guruji and He adds, “When you blossom the sweets come to you.” Then came a box of (Sandesh) Sweets and Guruji concluded, “This is today’s sandesh.” (Sandesh is the Hindi word for message)


Know that there are good people in the world in every field. This world has a hundred good people, and only five bad people. If the world is bad today, it is not because of the five bad elements, it is because of the hundred good people who are sleeping. So wake them up.


Q: How do you forgive yourself and your loved ones sincerely?

Guruji: There was no difficulty for me in this. You need to ask someone who has very tough time forgiving you and then you tell them to forgive you.


To have a spiritual teacher means to feel at ease, to feel comfort and to have the confidence to go on a journey to the unknown. A spiritual teacher means: There is somebody to take care of me. If I fall, someone is there to hold me.


The definition of spirituality in Sanskrit is attaining greatest happiness, attaining greatest freedom (Nirvana) . It is natural. Like water flows down, and fire goes up, human beings want enlightenment.

Om Namah Shivay

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Play of the Divine

Suppose you place your trust in someone and got betrayed. Then just remind yourself that it is all a play of the Divine. Think that God wanted to make you learn some important lesson, and so he came in this person’s form to your life.

So just see the situation with this understanding.

Why am I saying this? See, in the end, it is all one consciousness which assumes different forms and different ways to teach us something important in life. So have this understanding and just move ahead.


It is not right behavior to curse and speak ill of others around you, and only think well of yourself. Such behavior shows a lack of intelligence and maturity in the person.

Wanting spirituality is as natural as wanting deep rest, as wanting to be loved, as wanting comfort and happiness.


Q: I am not satisfied with the seva I do.

Guruji: That is a good sign which shows you are not frustrated.


Q: I have a vatta imbalance. My mind is so restless most of the time. It is almost impossible to meditate deeply. What to do?

Guruji: These imbalances are not permanent. You call it imbalance because it is impermanent. It can’t be there for too long. If vatta imbalance is there, it is going to go away. A little rest, an ayurvedic massage, a little attention on food, and some good sleep, it will be gone.

You shouldn’t sit and worry about it too much. It is the nature of the body, sometimes it gets very stiff, sometimes it becomes very loose. Same thing with the head! What do you do? That is how the nature is.

Do what you can, and do what is to be done, and just move on.


The feeling with which we sow the seeds of our actions, we will reap the same kind of results too.

Om Namah Shivay

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Chelsea Shields: How I’m working for change inside my church-4

Because religion doesn’t just create the roots of morality, it creates the seeds of normality. Religions can liberate or subjugate, they can empower or exploit, they can comfort or destroy, and the people that tip the scales over to the ethical and the moral are often not those in charge. Religions can’t be dismissed or ignored. We need to take them seriously. But it’s not easy to influence a religion, like we just talked about.

But I’ll tell you what my people have done. My groups are small, there’s hundreds of us, but we’ve had huge impact. Right now, women’s pictures are hanging in the halls next to men for the first time. Women are now allowed to pray in our church-wide meetings, and they never were before in the general conferences. As of last week, in a historic move, three women were invited down to three leadership boards that oversee the entire church. We’ve seen perceptual shifts in the Mormon community that allow for talk of gender inequality. We’ve opened up space, regardless of being despised, for more conservative women to step in and make real changes, and the words “women” and “the priesthood” can now be uttered in the same sentence. I never had that. My daughter and my nieces are inheriting a religion that I never had, that’s more equal — we’ve had an effect.

It wasn’t easy standing in those lines trying to get into those male meetings. There were hundreds of us, and one by one, when we got to the door, we were told, “I’m sorry, this meeting is just for men,” and we had to step back and watch men get into the meeting as young as 12 years old, escorted and walked past us as we all stood in line. But not one woman in that line will forget that day, and not one little boy that walked past us will forget that day.

If we were a multinational corporation or a government, and that had happened, there would be outrage, but we’re just a religion. We’re all just part of religions. We can’t keep looking at religion that way, because it doesn’t only affect me, it affects my daughter and all of your daughters and what opportunities they have, what they can wear, who they can love and marry, if they have access to reproductive healthcare. We need to reclaim morality in a secular context that creates ethical scrutiny and accountability for religions all around the world, but we need to do it in a respectful way that breeds cooperation and not extremism. And we can do it through unignorable acts of bravery, standing up for gender equality.

It’s time that half of the world’s population had voice and equality within our world’s religions, churches, synagogues, mosques and shrines around the world. I’m working on my people. What are you doing for yours?


Om Namah Shivay

***Write ” Om Namah Shivay ” if you ask for God’s blessing on your life today. Please Like, Tag and Share to bless others!

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