ON OUR RELIGIOUS GODMEN / RELIGIOUS PREACHERS
MEANING OF RELIGION
The religion is famously called as the one which transforms the mind of its proponents; changes negative mindset into the positive one. It is one of the most revered institutions which serve its purpose when it becomes a medium or a vehicle of change in the thinking and mindset of the concerned individuals for the overall good of the humanity. Religion, in fact, is run on the basis of laid down norms and principles enshrined in various scriptures. Truth is the hallmark or cornerstone/foundation on which a religion stands. Different religions have different scriptures; which could be construed as different paths in order to reach a single SOURCE. This Source is omnipotent and omniscient which adores us without any discrimination. We’ve to seek Him sincerely and He is there for our assistance.
The scriptural knowledge contained in different Holy Books requires somebody knowledgeable person to spread the respective messages contained in these. This ‘knowledgeable’ person should spread the message in right earnest. His earnestness is revealed when he/she transforms the ill-informed or ignorant people into knowledgeable thus removing the rampant ‘darkness’ that prevails in them. How best he/she does this depends solely on his/her Initiative and method adopted including the sincerity in which one spreads the message. When this message is spread with a motive to garner riches for enhancing power and pelf then it is bad. Here the intention is to lubricate the ego which is enemy number one for spiritual march ahead. Such people neither are connected with God nor know the truth about God and His existence.
GURU FOR SPREAD OF SCRIPTURAL TRUTH
The Guru originates from the Sanskrit which means a ‘teacher or a preacher’ but in real term, it is more significant than a teacher or a preacher. As per Bhagwad Gita, Guru is the one who eradicates ignorance or darkness from us. Guru or acts as spiritual teacher. The Guru Mantra whispered in our ear transforms us if we follow this Mantra sincerely.
Essentially, there are some reasonable posers which we should take into account while choosing an appropriate Guru Deva Ji. These question are; firstly, to whom to make a spiritual Guru secondly, when to make a spiritual Guru and thirdly how easily and sincerely we endeavour to pursue his discourses and sermons to the best of our ability and belief for our spiritual forward march. But for this, we’ve to be very cautious in our selection because if that spiritual Guru chosen gets embroiled in some illegal, immoral or unethical activities. We can easily imagine the predicament in which we may fall when we come to know that one to whom we believe not only belied our belief but also our Bhagwanji too. All this will surely, later on, disappoint us immeasurably after coming to know about the dark-side of our Guru. A Guru is venerable but not vulnerable to negative attributes.
A Guruji could be a living one or may be in his heavenly abode but his spiritual knowledge should still influence us not only spiritually but also become a guiding light in our day to day activities. Gurus should be like: Shri Paramhansa Ji whose various books on spiritualism including AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A GURU are the guiding lights for different people round the globe. These written works could guide us and influence our Karma. Guru Mantra given to us by our Guru as per own capacity and spiritual inclination can work wonders in our life
It is relevant to mention about my own Guru Ji, Late Shri Sarupananda of Nangli Sahib (UP) whispered a Guru Mantra in my ear which I recite in my prayers thus helping me in maintaining God’s connectivity and becomes a guiding light in whatever I transact. Although he is not with me in person yet he remain influencing me in variety of ways. That is the secret of a Guru or a Godman.
If and when that spiritual leader or a Guru is found to have indulged in morally flawed and ethically wrong misdeeds / kukaramas then we can well image the state of our disappointment. For such a so called Guru, the phrase ‘A wolf in sheep’s clothing’ or a wolf masquerading in sheep’s clothing stands good for such a person. Fact stands out that conviction of Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s conviction in two rape cases has proved that we should not be taken in by the outward platitudes and high sounding deceptive rhetoric’s. The decision of Hon’ble Court was eye-opener not only for the supporters consisting of unlettered populace of this misleading individual called GURMEET RAM RAHIM. He is not fit for calling himself as ‘Insan’ human even.
GREED BRINGS ABOUT OUR DOOM
It is observed that people in general give more credence to material possessions than any other consideration such as spiritual orientation etc which is in fact a curse. Thus we can infer that more desire for worldly possessions bring in its wake more desire for more possessions and this chain reaction for ‘more – still more’ remain unending consequently we are engulfed in the web of negativism of our own making. This highest stage of ignorance or lack of knowledge goes on unabated putting the concerned proponent into the quicksand of ‘no return’ situation. This is similar to the condition with the Godmen of today who aspire for riches and reach to the situation of ‘no return’ because it is too late when realization dawns on them. Such is the condition with some of our so called Godmen who have thrust into the allurement of external shine. They live for wealth, accumulate more and more of it by hoodwinking the gullible or easy to fool masses by resorting to any means whatsoever. Similar is the case with our Godmen such as Gurmit Ram Rahim etc.
Those who advice others to follow a disciplined life should first of all follow disciplined life themselves. Mere advising others and giving them spirit boosting talk will not serve any purpose. A spiritual preacher should understand fully what actually spiritualism stands for. Tall talk will neither be good for the followers nor the preacher himself/herself. I am giving some of so called spiritual preachers whose Kukarma came in the glare/domain of general public which not only has lowered them in the eyes of their followers but also their standing for good.
GURMEET RAM RAHIM
It is pertinent to mention that so called Godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim controlled his empire with more than 1,000 acres of land at one place and even more in other places, vast expanse of campus, with multi-specialty hospital, luxury resort, schools, palatial abode with cave like structure, hospitality and hotel businesses, with MSG brand ayuvedic products and cosmetics, business in clothes, animal care products and a battery making factory etc. he should have been called a businessman rather than a Godman. This modern Godman should be termed as a business tycoon of highest repute if he wanted so. His adopted daughter and he had produced films which were being screened in his own cinema hall known as Mahi. To top it all, he had armed guards to defend his empire and to protect his ill-gotten wealth and also with an ulterior intention that nobody should know his ulterior activities.
A compassionate and humanitarian / philanthropic related work should not carry the tag of ‘commercial activities’. If we perform some humanitarian service, it should never ever be done after giving wide publicity or drumming about it. For charity or empathy, our left hand should not know what our right hand is doing. That is the well established norm for a good work done and if that work is done in order to garner profit, then that work loses its significance in the eyes of our Creator. Being compassionate is so good but to be compassionate with huge reservoir of humbleness gives us eternal satisfaction.
As a result of his conviction by the court for rapping two Sadhvis, he was awarded 20 years imprisonment for the heinous crime perpetrated by him. Gurmeet Ram Rahim started weeping in the court room. His crime was more monstrous since he belied the beliefs of lacks of his followers who believed him immensely. He did not leave his own female disciples and finger is also being pointed that he had affair with his adopted daughter. In fact a shameful act for a so called godman.
In the prison cell, the godman cries, why i had done this? This lamentation is just a façade. He did not take any food for two days after his imprisonment. He pretented that he was the patient of hypertension and other diseases. His rependence, at this stage, when all the sex cases against this godman have been proved beyond any stretch of doubt.
It is not the men folks who fool the common people with their tricks to have spiritual knowhow but there are some women too in this. There is the case of Radhey Maa, a so called spiritual preacher but known for her controversial issues like harassing her devotees etc. Born in Gurdaspur (Punjab), she was drawn towards spirituality from her early childhood. She moved to Mumbai and hoodwinked the gullible masses but she kept her connection with Punjab and participate in religious congregations. She too has substantial followers. Subsequently a police case was filed against her for physical assaults and other cases attributed to her. Such is the state of our religious preachers. They could go to any limit for getting money and publicity.
I had the opportunity of attending his discourses four times. In each of his congregation, he had a special mantra to maintain connectivity with our Bhagwanji. His motivational anecdotes, words and phrases for his followers were obviously very impressive. Seemed as though he can do no harm to anyone. He mesmerized his audience with his oratory on spirituality. Never in our dreams, we could fathom that such a person with lacs of followers / devotees could do anything which is attributed to him.
He too have several acres of land attached with his various ashrams, running schools in the Ashrams, have factories to manufacture Ayurvedic products, a monthly bi-lingual magazine published besides a host of spiritual activities performed by his followers. But a complaint by the parents of a teenaged girl against Asaram for sexually assaulting her, opened a Pandora Box against him and his son named Narayan Sai. Both were imprisoned and case registered against father and son duo. All this goes to show ‘When wealth is lost nothing is lost, when health is lost , something is lost, but when character is lost, all is lost’.
SWAMI FROM THE SOUTH
Another so called Guru from South India too vanished in the thin air when he was convicted of sexual abuse in the USA. The Barsana Dham where he conducted his spiritual lectures was also famous for having all sorts of activities like yoga classes, concerts, discourses including interfaith ones besides doing humanitarian work of rendering help to refugees adversely affected by Hurricane Katrina.
A true preacher of a Dharma Guru should have the following traits:-
(a) He should know fully what is spiritualism and relevant belief system.
(b) He should not preach others something which he cannot follow himself.
(c) He should command respect from not only his followers but also the general public.
(d) Worldly possessions should not be his weakness.
(e) He should preach others in a language which is understood by his audience.
(f) He should rather be humble and compassionate to the core.
(g) Finally he should know the true import of Guru Dharma and influence which he could exercise on his devotees for their overall good.