View Full Version : A.07 - Guru Tattva

December 19th, 2013, 03:50 PM
“Thanks for giving me a glimpse of that scene.”

“You are mostly welcome. I am the one to thank you for taking me there again.”

“I am anxious to hear the rest, but I am also curious about something else. You have mentioned how you, your brother and your ex-husband are so devoted to your guru. Can you tell me something about him? How did you meet him?”

“Oh, sure, I can - it is the sweetest topic I can talk about. First time I went to India it was in 1986. My brother and I went to visit His Divine Grace Paramahamsa Thakura Sri Srila Bhakti Raksaka Sridhara Deva Gosvami Maharaja, in Navadwip Dhama, West Bengal. My guru
was his secretary and he served His Divine Grace so perfectly we couldn’t see any difference between the two of them. In fact, for us, the elderly guru was more like a deity, something unreachable, while my guru was a person, someone you could talk to, and he is so sweet and affectionate, we immediately fell in love with him, and accepted him as our guru. You see, there is the institution, and there is the heart. Those who are interested in the form, in formalities, follow the commands of the institution; those who are interested in the essence follow the heart.”
“My brother moved to Italy in 1987 and I started visiting my guru in India quite often around the same time. I would go to India, stay the three months my visa allowed me to stay there, then go back to Brazil, where I would stay for just one month before going back to India again. I did that a bunch of times, until Srila Sridhara Deva Goswami Maharaja passed away in 1988, and my guru came back to the west. I lost track of his whereabouts, and I was not interested in going back to India anymore, that temple didn’t mean anything to me without him.”

“I am sorry to interrupt. Those trips you did to India, was your brother with you?”

“No. Those ones I did by myself. He had just moved to Italy, and at that time he was studying opera singing, under that sponsorship I’ve mentioned before, he couldn’t leave. I was miserable when he moved away from Brazil, I missed him a lot. I had found my guru, and I couldn’t stay away from him. I was so young, and so inexperienced, that traveling across
the world alone was frightening. I made sure to stop in Milan every time to see Valter, of course. Arriving in India, an unaccompanied young woman, do you know how awful it was? Do you know how they looked at me?”
“Even so, those trips were the best time of my life. I didn’t know a word of Bengali, the language spoken in that region of India, but while peeling potatoes with the ladies at the temple I learned some. In the village where that temple resides people don’t speak English, neither did I at that time. We mostly spoke the language of the heart. My guru speaks English beautifully, of course, I learned mine from him.”
“Sometimes there were festivals and people all around the world would come to see His Divine Grace. At those times, the temple was crowded with westerners, I didn’t like them much. I enjoyed the temple more when there were no festivals and it was just the Bengalis and me, and most of the time it was just my guru and me. We would talk for hours, he and I would lose notion of time.”

“You said you lost track of your guru after his guru passed away.”

“Yes. I was not in India when it happened, but my brother was. He saw my guru performing the burial ceremonies for his own guru. It must have been hard for him, I am happy I wasn’t there to see it. The departure of one’s guru is like an inauspicious eclipse that darkens the midday sun – very painful.”
“I always knew my guru would be back to the west as soon as His Divine Grace would be gone, and I knew I would find him again, I just didn’t know how or when. So, from 1988 to 1990 I didn’t hear from him. During those years I remained in Brazil, preaching, teaching to people all he taught me, and it was about this time that I met my husband. When we were planning our wedding and our trip to India my brother called me from Milan saying that my guru was there visiting him. My wedding didn’t matter for me anymore, my honeymoon, my trip to India, none of it mattered. I changed our flight to make a stop in Italy to see my guru again. It was then when my husband met my guru. He had intended to meet a
guru in India, it would be his first trip to India, but after he met my guru in
Italy he was enamored. My guru instructed us about the places we should be visiting during our honeymoon, which temples we should seek out. We travelled all around India, south to north - it took us three months to get to know the whole country.”
“When we came back to Brazil we invited my guru to visit us, and he accepted. We had this institute where we taught Vedic Sciences, we had both clients and students, and my guru preached to them all. It was wonderful, something I would have never imagined would have happened when I first met him.”

“What did he preach about? What did the both of you talk about when you were in Navadwip Dhama?”

“Oh, my dear, it will take me lifetimes to answer these questions. Actually I am bound to do that, out of gratitude. You will just have to wait, these things are being told, if your heart can hear them.”

“How did you know he was your guru?”

“Shraddha, faith, is a feeling, a feeling of certainty. It can’t be explained, it can be only felt. We just know, we feel – and as much as
my rationality tries to deny it, my heart can’t. Sometimes when I see other
people feeling the same I am amazed myself, I sometimes forget that I am not the only one who can feel that way. Guru Tattva, the Principle of Sri
Guru, is universal, anybody can feel it. I explained it before, it is a descent
– a higher power comes to rescue you, and you can’t do anything, but surrender to that sweet will.”

“I have never felt something like that, I wouldn’t know.”

“It doesn’t matter if you haven’t. When I look at a parent with their children I know how the parent feels, and I’ve never had children. It’s the same way. Everybody can imagine it.”

“I see.”