Guru Purnima 2021-22: Date, Time and Importance

Guru Purnima in 2021

24

July, 2021

(Saturday)

In Hindu culture, Guru is considered superior to God as it is the Guru who helps to cross the ocean like the world. By attaining the knowledge of the Guru and following the path shown, one attains salvation. It is believed in the Shastras that if God curses you, then the Guru can save you, but even God himself cannot protect you from the Guru curse. That is why Kabir Ji also says –

Guru Gobind Dono Khade, Kaake Laagu Paya.

Balihari Guru Aapno, Gobind Diyo Batay.

Every year, the full moon of Ashadh month is observed as Guru Purnima. The Guru is venerated on Guru Purnima. In India, this festival is celebrated with immense respect. In ancient times, when the disciples used to receive free education in the Guru's ashram. On Guru Purnima, they worshiped their Guru with full devotion. On this day, the Guru and the elder in the house, i.e., parents, siblings, etc., are considered gurus, and blessings are taken from them. Gurus are highly respected in our country because it is only a Guru who leads his disciple out of the wrong path and leads it in the right direction. Many such stories related to the mythological period are prevalent, which shows that the Guru has a remarkable contribution in making anyone great. One of the reasons behind celebrating this day is also believed that on this day, the great Guru Maharishi Ved Vyas, who composed the great literature like Brahmasutra, Mahabharata, Srimad Bhagavat, and Eighteen Puranas, was born. On this day, all the disciples take the blessings of their respective gurus. They thank them for what they have given so far.

We at Bajrangi Dhaam will be performing a small Pooja ritual and Guru Purnima celebration for selected followers & the overall prosperity of our large client base on 24th July, 2021 in the morning around 9.00 am. 

What is the Meaning of Guru?

In the Shastras, 'Gu' means darkness Yamul ignorance, and 'Ru' means its Nirodhak, 'Prakash.' A Guru is called a Guru because he removes ignorance from enlightenment; that is, he is the 'Guru' who leads from darkness to light. The similarity between Guru and God has been believed to be of equal stature. The reason behind this reverence is that this relationship is solely for spiritual progress and attainment of God. 

The Beginning of Guru-Shishya Tradition 

According to the Shastras, at first, Sriparmeshwar named Narayan as Vishnu and ordered him to chant the Mahamantra in the form of 'Om.' Later, to free Brahma from ignorance, God revealed with his heart the wisdom of Yogis to Sri Rudra. He then purified Brahma's darkness by giving them the knowledge to chant the 'Om Namah Shivaya' mantra to cleanse Brahma's conscience. Therefore, it is Guruta to take the disciple towards the light instead of darkness.

The Importance of Guru Purnima

On the day of Guru Purnima, many people duly worship their late Guru or Brahmin saints with their Paduka, Diya, flower, Akshat, sandalwood, naivedya, etc. 

One who erases darkness and leads to light is called 'Guru.' Even though parents give birth to a child, the teacher does the work of explaining the meaning of life and the world to him. Guru is called Brahma because just as he creates an organism, in the same way, the Guru makes a disciple. Our soul is eager to confront the truth in the form of God, and this confrontation is not possible without meeting the present physical state of Guru; that is why in every birth, it searches for the Guru.

Maharishi Ved Vyas Ji, who composed eighteen Puranas was born on Ashada Purnima. Such is the belief. Ved Vyas was the son of great sage Parashar. According to Hindu scriptures, Maharishi Vyas was the master of all three periods. Seeing from his divine vision, he knew that people's interest in religion in Kali Yuga would decrease. Due to a lack of interest in religion, a man will not be a believer in God, devoid of duty, and will be of less age. It will not be easy for him to study an extensive and complete Veda. That is why Maharishi Vyas divided the Vedas into four parts so that people with little intellect and little memory power can also benefit by studying Vedas.

Vyas Ji named the Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samveda, and Atharva Veda after dividing the Vedas into separate divisions. Due to such division of Vedas, he became famous as Ved Vyas. He gave Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda, and Atharvaveda to his beloved disciples Vaishampayan, Sumantumuni, Pal, and Jamin. Ved Vyas Ji composed the Puranas as the fifth Veda in which the knowledge of Vedas is explained in the form of exciting stories-stories because the experience in Vedas is extraordinarily mysterious and challenging. He gave them the wisdom of Puranas to his disciple Rome Harshan. According to their power of intellect, the disciples of Vyas Ji divided their Vedas into several branches and sub-branches. Maharishi Vyasa also composed the Mahabharata. They are considered our Adi-gurus. This famous festival of Guru Purnima is also celebrated as the birth anniversary of Vyas Ji. Therefore, this festival is also called Vyas Purnima.

What is the Ancient Importance of Guru Purnima?

According to various Hindu mythological Vedas, Guru has also been called Sarvopari from Tridevas because it is believed that Guru only shows the right direction to the person and also guides his disciple. This day has been celebrated since old times. The disciples' immense reverence for their Guru was the real Dakshina for the Guru at that time. There is also a law for Govardhan's circumambulation, which is in Uttar Pradesh. It has also been seen that on this day, people bathe in holy rivers, kunds, and ponds and also give donations.

Guru ki Mahima Hai Agam, Gaakar Tarta Shishya

Guru Kal ka Anumaan Kar, Gadhta Aaj Bhavishya

Lord Shiva is considered to be the Maiden Guru in Vedic Grantha. 

According to the Puranas, Lord Shiva is considered the first Guru. Shani and Parashuram are his two disciples. Shivaji was the first to propagate civilization and religion on earth, so he is called Adidev and Adiguru. Shiva is also called Adinath. Adiguru Shiva gave seven people along with Shani and Parashurama. These were later called the seven hamarshi, and they subsequently spread the knowledge of Shiva all around.

Shishya Worship Guru

On the pious festival of Guru Purnima, the disciples worship and worship their gurus as gifts and give some donation and Dakshina and express their gratitude concerning them. In each age, the authority of the Guru has been pervading everywhere like the particle-like Parambrahma. The world without a guru is just a night of ignorance. 

Method of Guru Purnima Puja

The Shastras describe the method of Guru Puja on Guru Purnima in such a way that after worshiping Lord Vishnu, Shiva, Guru Jupiter, and Maharishi Ved Vyasa in the morning, you must honor your Guru. Make your Guru a garland of flowers and take blessings from him by offering sweets, new clothes, and money.

1. On Guru Purnima, not only the Guru but anyone elder in the family, that is, parents, siblings, etc., should also be considered like Guru.

2. Only by the grace of the teacher does knowledge enters the student. The ignorance and darkness of his heart get removed.

3. Only the blessings of the Guru are beneficial, enlightening, and useful for humanity. All the learning of the world comes from the grace of the Guru.

4. This day is also best for getting the mantra from Guru.

5. On this day, it is essential to serve the Gurus as much as possible.

6. Hence, it is important to celebrate this festival with full devotion

The Myth behind the Celebration of Guru Purnima

The identity of India lies in its spiritual essence. According to the changing times and circumstances, the fantastic art of bringing this spirituality into life is also taught by India's sages. Guru Poornima is the festival of expressing gratitude to such cosmopolitan gurus who, despite suffering themselves, lead the society on the path of progress. Hardly anyone is unaware of the name of Maharishi Veda Vyasa during the Mahabharata period; these are the same Munishrestha who composed the four Vedas, written eighteen Puranas, and created the Srimad Bhagavata. He was considered the first Guru of the Guru-disciple tradition. 

It is known very well that if any person gives any knowledge, makes us learn something; then he is like a guru to us; he is worthy of worship, irrespective of the stature. It is mentioned in the Shastras that once Muniver saw someone from the Bhil caste bending a tree and plucking coconut from it. From that day, Vyas Ji started chasing that person because he was keen to know this learning, but that person used to run away from Ved Vyas Ji due to hesitation and fear. While chasing - Vyas Ji reached the person one day, and the person was not present, but his son was present who listened to Vyas Ji and agreed to give the mantra. The next day Vyas Ji came, and he took that mantra, following all the rules. When the father saw all this, he could not stay away from him. He wanted to know the reason for this from the son. After listening to the son, the father said that son, "I did not want to intentionally give this mantra to Vyas Ji as in my mind that the person from whom the mantra is taken, he becomes like Jiguru and we are poor and belong to small caste. Will Vyas Ji respect us if we are poor?" Then the father said that if the son who gives the mantra is not revered, then that mantra does not come to fruition, so you go and test Vyas Ji whether he will provide you with respect or not. The son reached the next day in the court of Vyas Ji, where he was discussing with his companions. Seeing his Guru coming, Vyas Ji came running and worshiped him and respected him, following all the rules. The person was pleased to see this. All his dilemmas and his father's dilemmas were erased that a person who gives importance to a small caste like a Guru is genuinely revered. And since then, Vyasa Ji started being considered as the foremost Guru in the Guru-Shishya tradition. One day in the year was dedicated to the Brahma Gyan Sadguru, popularly known as Vyas Purnima or Guru Purnima.

Why is Varsha Ritu Best for Guru Purnima?

All seasons in India have their importance. There is a reason behind Guru Purnima being observed, especially during the rainy season. It is because, in these four months, there is neither excess heat nor excess cold. This time is apt and best for studies and teaching. Therefore, the disciples present at Gurucharan opt for this time to attain the power of knowledge, peace, devotion, and yoga. 

You can read similar write-up on relevance of astrology in indian festivals for all other major Indian Festivals.