Gurupurnima 2020 with Vishwaguruji
On Sunday 5 July 2020, the 7th full moon of the year, Gurupurnima celebrations took place in Mahaprabhudip Ashram Střílky, Czechia. His Holiness Vishwaguru Mahamandaleshwar Paramhans Sri Swami Maheshwarananda Puriji, founder of Yoga in Daily Life, arrived in Europe from India, just one week before, giving students and devotees the rare opportunity to be with him on this most auspicious day.
From near and far, many came to take part in these traditional spiritual festivities. With so many people gathered together, everyone took care to very consciously follow the necessary health and safety rules and guidelines as required in these times of the Coronavirus Pandemic.
Speaking to the devoted crowd, Vishwaguruji explained the meaning of Gurupurnima:
"GU means darkness, RU means light. The guru leads you from the darkness to the light. When the light comes, the darkness must disappear. This light is Parabrahma, the highest principle. Purnima means completeness."
He then gave a lecture about the great saint Ved Vyasa, the great sage and teacher of Sat Sanatan Dharma, the universal path of consciousness.
As Gurupurnima traditionally begins a new spiritual year, Vishwaguruji referred to the importance of making a sankalpa, a decisive commitment for the year ahead:
"Make your sankalpa on Gurupurnima to think, speak and act positively – just be positive! Just be good!"
Vishwaguruji's own master, Paramhans Swami Madhavanandaji, affectionately known as 'Holy Guruji', wrote the beautiful book Lila Amrit, in which he illustrates the profoundly deep relationship between a Guru and a disciple through astounding and remarkable true-life stories.
In the great Indian scriptural epic, the Mahabharata, Lord Krishna describes the perfect Master for his friend Uddhava:
"Find a guru who can control the body, mind and senses. Only those who have gained complete self-control can realize God the Supreme and attain all siddhis (spiritual perfections)."
This Gurupurnima was celebrated in Mahaprabhudip Ashram, in the small Czech village of Střílky, which is a wonderfully peaceful place surrounded by nature. And on this most sacred day, the weather was very favorable, so all were able to sit in the big park behind the ashram castle, under huge 300-year-old trees, with scattered sunlight shining through the leaves.
For the devotees, it felt like a great blessing that Vishwaguruji was with them on this very day. For many years he has usually been at the ashrams in India at this time. An altar with the pictures of the Yoga in Daily Life lineage of masters or parampara, was on display. The satsang atmosphere was warm and loving. The bhajan band sang Sri Sataguru Chalisa, a prayer of devotion composed by Holy Guruji, and then they sang many beautiful bhajans (devotional songs) of Mahaprabhuji and Holy Guruji.
This was followed by the ceremonial or Puja time: one by one, the yoga students and devotees (bhaktas) went with flowers, gifts and donations to Vishwaguruji and the altar - hearts filled with devotion, expressing their love and gratitude to their teacher.
Long time devotee, Rukmani, senior yoga teacher and secretary of the Yoga in Daily Life Association in Vienna, Austria, expressed what many were clearly feeling on the day, when she said, "Many of us could feel the oneness with our beloved master, our teacher. Thank you, dear Vishwaguruji, for your protection, guidance, and endless love. It is your blessing which leads us to liberation."
See more pictures and an article about the Gurupurnima celebration on vishwaguruji.org