"Selfless Service at Guru - Sthaans and Importance of Laung, Elaichi & Jal"
- written by Sh. Ravi Trehan
The highest form of worship is to render selfless service to His creation – the mankind, revered Sadguruji’ (of Gurgaon) used to say. During his lifetime, he established sewa sthans in many small and big cities in India as well as at the international level. Hundreds and thousands of people from all walks of life - social, political, business, weaker sections, practicing all kinds of religious beliefs and faiths, irrespective of cast, colour and creed, visit these sthans with variety of problems – physical, mental, material, spiritual and what not, and receive selfless service and spiritual cure to their ailments and solution to their problems from mukhya sthan sanchalaks. Innumerable persons, innumerable problems and solutions – blessings, direction to follow the path of satoguna and are given laung, elachi, jal and kara etc. charged with spiritual powers.
Mankind is the most exalted creation of the Lord. In fact, while creating human form, He gave it the shape of a mobile temple in which He established Himself in the form of Atman. Atman is an inseparable part of Param-atman. If our thoughts are pure and satoguna is predominantly prevalent in us, then we can perceive the presence of God in every mobile temple that we come across. Clearer the mirror, equally clear would be the reflection.
Sewa: Service to mankind should be rendered with a sense of sacrifice and dedication, relinquishing all attachment to it. Alleviate the sufferings of humanity and earn the prayers and blessings of Dridra-Narayan. Rendering service to mankind with a feeling of selflessness is, in fact, serving the Lord himself, because He is present in every human being. By doing so, we attain the highest good. In return, the all merciful, benevolent Narayan, in a mood of placidity, showers His abundant blessings on us and accelerates the process of our spiritual advancement. Interestingly, when you render service with a feeling of selflessness, not with ostentation nor with a sense of pride to gain fame, not as charity to give a feeling to the recipient as if he is an object of pity; but with love and compassion, with a feeling that to do so is your duty, then you establish an unbreakable bond of ‘bhavana’ between the two. When our sewa is moistened with love and compassion, then the resultant contentment and happiness is gratifying both to the giver and the recepient in an infinite measure. Such an act of a ‘karamyogi’ generates ‘satoguna’ and the all pervading infinite is always present where such ‘karmas’ are being performed. No form of worship is greater than serving his own creation - the mankind. Japa (inward recitation of mantras), dhyana (meditation), and nishkam sewa (rendering selfless service to mankind with a sense of dedication and sacrifice) is the simplest and shortest short-cut to attaining salvation and God realization.
Problems: Because of our attachment to the material world (which is temporary, transitory, and ever-changing), we tend to weave a web of problems around us. Depending upon our past and present karmas and sanskars, as a result of a particular guna (satoguna, rajoguna or tamoguna) predominantly prevalent in us at a given point of time, we enjoy pleasures or suffer pains. As the human race multiplied, we became more and more materialistic and self-centred. In the process, we developed a tendency to construct walls around us – walls of ego-centric desires. That is how, we restrict our vision, our thoughts, our actions, through the identification of oneself with the body. Human progress and expansion was limited to ‘Me’ and ‘Mine’ and those related to me through this body.
The feeling of jealousy increased to such an extent that the happiness and welfare of a neighbour became a source of sorrow. Under the influence of rajoguna and tamoguna, tormented by their own thinking pattern, conduct and behaviour, karmas (actions), and ailments due to food habits, human-beings were bewildered and wandered in the race of finding solution to their problems. We forgot our real identity that we are not a destructable body, but an indestructible, everlasting and eternal soul (atman), which is an inseparable part of Param-atman. Renowned psychiatrics hold the view that we have no control over 10% of our problems, whereas 90% of our problems are the result of our own thinking, behaviour pattern and reactions, which (with practice and restraint) can be easily brought under control.
Sadguru’s grace: Attempt praising the grace and blessings of Sadguru, and we shall fall short of words. Mahaguru mantra itself explains the stature and level of Sadguru in its entirety:
Guru Bramha, Guru Vishnu, Guru Devo Maheshwara
Guru Sakshaat par Bramha, Tasmaye Shree Guruve namah
Guru dispels the darkness of ignorance, about this false and transitory material world. He teaches us the art of living a balanced life with restraint and stability of mind. He is the one who is competent to show us the light of knowledge, make us realize the presence of the Omni-present and lead us to the path of bliss. Guru motivates people who are tormented by the sufferings due to attachment (to the material world), enmity and jealousy, to the path of spirituality and self realization. He enlightens our path and guides us as to how can we discipline and tame our five wild horses (passion, anger, greed, emotional attachment and ego) to bring those under our control and take the chariot of our life in the right direction to experience inner peace and bliss.
Revered Guriji, who was manifestation of Shiv-shakti, would recommend good use of the gifts of nature, like jal and vanaspati (laung, elachi, kali-mirch etc.) to alleviate people from their variety of problems. Nature has provided medicinal values in all these items, but revered Guruji groomed his shishyas in the path of sadhna and made them capable of multiplying the medicinal values by charging these items with the power of mantras and they are relieving people of their physical and mental problems.
The effect of mantra-power also depends upon the karmas of people. How good or bad the person is, accordingly would be the time factor, less or more, to derive the benefit. It does take some time to cleanse the dirt (of bad karmas) of a person. Persons who are comparatively pious and receptive, get well soon or find solution to their problems faster.
Importance of vanaspati and jal: Shanti-mantra in Yajurveda (Chapter 36, shloka 17) while praising the entire universe, five tatvas, medicines, vegetation (among other gifts of nature), motivates towards international peace and internal peace of mind. These vegetational gifts of nature – laung, elachi, kali-mirch, tulsi, supari, neem etc. – have inbuilt medicinal valaues, but when a sadhak, with the grace and blessings of Sadguru, charges these items with exalted and sidh mantras, then with the help of spiritual powers, the medicinal values of these items multiply manifold and the physical and mental ailments of people get eradicated at a miraculous speed.
From the spiritual point of view, laung and elachi have a very deep significance. When laung is placed on elachi in a perpendicular position, then this combination takes the shape of a shiv-linga. A human form is the most exalted creation of the Lord. It is like a mobile temple. When laung and elachi is taken with implicit faith and reverence, while inwardly chanting Aum Aum Aum, then symbolically, we are establishing shiv-linga (shiv-shakti) in this corporal temple. Furthermore, by pouring jal on that shiv-linga (i.e. drinking jal) day and night, an effort is being made to cleanse the dirt, layer after layer, of rajoguna and tamoguna, accumulated during birth after birth and establish satoguna in a clear, transparent and pure mind.
This effort generates cosmic energy in the human body and ensures regular and adequate flow of life force, eradicates ailments, enhances will-power, and in a clear and transparent mind, you are able to see and realize your real-self (atman) which is an inseparable part of Param-atman.
With this effort, the object is to alleviate the suffering humans afflicted by tamoguni and rajoguni food habits, conduct and behaviour, thinking pattern, sense of attachment (to material world), jealousy, animosity etc.; show him the right direction and motivate him to leading a satoguni life with a spiritual bent of mind so that he is able to experience happiness and peace, which has been alluding him so far.
Jal is a life source. Merely by adopting the qualities of Jal, one can ensure fulfillment of life. The inherent qualities of Jal are coolness, purity, transparency, continuous flow and ability to change its course when it comes across obstacles, transform its transparency into any colour it is put into. That is how our life needs to be. Remain cool in favourable as well as in adverse circumstances. Ensure transparency in your character, purity in your thoughts, actions, behaviour and conduct, and you would pleasantly observe that you belong to the entire world and the entire world belongs to you – .Vasudhaiva Kutumbhakam. Life is a continuous flow of energy and must go on if the human race has to progress. One should be able to change and adjust oneself in changing circumstances and situations. Obstinacy will only result into turbulence – anger, hostility, animosity, jealousy, so on and so forth, which is not the purpose of our life.
Importance of Kara: We live and keep ourselves alive because of cosmic energy. Due to fluctuations in the cosmic energy, certain deficiencies occur in the human body which create variety of problems. Copper, being a good conductor, plays an important role in keeping these fluctuations under control. Just as electricity is generated in a power house and through the distribution transformer and copper cable it reaches up to the meter in our house, so that we are able to make good use of the electrical equipment/gadgets. To safeguard these equipments/gadgets, we install a voltage stabilizer. In the same manner, kara, made out of copper wire, receives cosmic energy, stores it and distributes/transmits it to the human body at required intensity, so that various gadgets/limbs of our body are able to perform the desired functions. Kara is worn as a protective measure to safeguard the safety of our body and to maintain its normal functioning. This is the reason why Kara keeps changing its colour – at times it shines, sometimes it becomes dull and at times it turns black or red. This is a scientific explanation.
Copper is a metal that acts as a shield or a deterrent factor to any impending ailment. From naturopathy point of view, water stored in a copper vessel, eliminates the impurities of water and its use can drive out many anomalies of the stomach. Copper kara constantly rubs around the wrist and, through the fine pours of skin, enters into our body in an infinitesimal quantity. Then it mixes with the body chemistry and eradicates many types of ailments.
Copper kara has a very deep spiritual; significance also. Copper is a manifestation of Mahamritunjey (one of the forms of Lord Shiva), that not only gives relief from ailments, sorrows, sufferings and other problems, but also acts as a protection to the human body and bestows good health. After living a complete life, it ensures agony-free transcendence. Half copper and half silver kara symbolically is a manifestation of Shiva and Shakti – copper represents Lord Shiva and silver Shakti. Shakti, in the form of Goddess Lakshmi bestows upon us happiness and well-being, wealth and prosperity, progress and advancement in business and profession, land and property etc.
This fact is equally important that when you take the charged items with pious feelings, implicit faith and reverence, surrender yourself unconditionally unto the lotus feet of your Guru and God, the results and blessings are equally positive and forthcoming. For example, while bowing your head before the Guru to receive his blessings, if the inner-self has not bowed, then, the mechanical bending of the body is meaningless. That karma which is performed half-heartedly, devoid of faith and reverence, then the result obtained is also incomplete. A true Sadguru, who renders selfless service, expects nothing in return except that, like God, he yearns for love and reverence only. Except love, reverence and faith, what else can you give to your Guru. In the spiritual domain of Guru hierarchy, gift items of material world become unimportant and meaningless. To detach yourself from the material world and move ahead towards spiritual world is the ultimate goal of human life.