5-WHY SHOULD WE FOLLOW MEHER BABA?
Why is it necessary to go to a Sadguru or Avatar? To answer this, one need to know real purpose of life. What our life mean? What do we want in our life? Do we want fulfillment of desires only in our life or it has some higher purpose? Why are we not able to achieve everything what we think of? Why the man is limited and suffers? Many similar questions remain unanswered. There are many things beyond man’s control. Tulsidas said “Hani, Labh, Jivan, Maran, Jash, and Apajas Bidhi Hath”.
According to Meher Baba- “Aim of life is to love God and goal of life is to become God. There is no creature that is not destined for supreme goal, just as there is no river which is not winding its way to sea”.
Every soul is consciously or unconsciously traversing spiritual journey and heading toward God-realization. May it take millions of births to achieve this Goal. Meher Baba said every soul is trying to find the answer of one original question as “Who AM I” and ultimately gets one final answer to this question as "I AM GOD”. Every soul is destined for the God realization. In fact whole world is a big dream. As a man we are waking but as God we are dreaming. According to destiny, at appropriate time one starts self introspection or develops intuition to tread upon spiritual path of self realization by himself or coming into contact of a saint, guru, Sadguru or Avatar. Meher Baba said “Love God and become God. In order to love God love Me. I am the God personified”.
Status of a Guru or Saint.
There are many saints, valis, and pirs of different spiritual planes who are not God realized. They can help you in your spiritual journey maximum to their level only. For example a Ph.D. holder can teach nursery to Ph.D. students but an intermediate student cannot teach a Ph.D. student. Many are false and hypocrite saints and gurus who have no level in spirituality but with their bookish knowledge are able to impress common men by their speeches. Such gurus are no good for benefit of spiritual aspirant. These saints or gurus of lower status give mantra or secret words to their followers for repetition, a medium of limited approach to progress spiritually. Kabir, perfect master of his time said “Kanfuka guru had ka, behad ka guru nahi, behad ka guru aur hai, soch samajh man mahi”.
Meher Baba says “I am the goal and I give nothing less than God realization”. I am a shah Saudagar (one who has full control over the business). Do not ask me for pin, thread or material things for which you can approach sadhu and saints who can fulfill your desires. I fulfill your needs but not desires. If you are thirsty in a desert, you need water not lemonade. So, do not come to me even with the desire of God realization but just to love, obey and try to surrender Me as much as you can. Rest I will take care of you and your goal. I will take you to the final destination of God-realization blind folded without any risk and pitfall of spiritual journey. Only Sadguru or Avatar is worth to be approached for spiritual help which depends on past preparations of an individual and his destiny.
How to Find a Real Sadguru or Avatar?
Sadguru means a Man-God (man becoming God). Sadguru is one who has consciousness of God as well man simultaneously and bears experience of “Aham Brahmasmi” or “I am everything” having universal body and mind. Unless one reaches to certain height in spirituality, he has no capacity to recognize even a mast of higher plane and to recognize a Sadguru is still more difficult. None of the contemporary saint or self styled guru has dared to call himself Avatar except Meher Baba who all the time declared that He is the Avatar of the age. He proclaimed “I am not this body. I am the Highest of the High. I am no less than Avatar. If I say you are a dog, you will not accept it because you consciously know that you are not a dog, likewise I consciously know that I am God. If I say I am not an Avatar it would be a biggest hypocrisy for me”. When someone has no capacity to recognize or find a Sadguru then why not to try Meher Baba who has revealed His identity as an Avatar?
Test of a Sadguru or Avatar
Sadguru and Avatar always allows the spiritual aspirant to test Himself because He is truth Himself. Nothing is impossible for Him. Those who sincerely approach to Sadguru or Avatar are definitely helped by Sadguru or Avatar to bring them in His fold. But to test a Sadguru or an Avatar with malice intentions or to insult Him may be very damaging for the individual. Here, an incident with Meher Baba is worth to quote. One person approached Meher Baba to find his lost son but Meher Baba refused. When father of boy insisted, Meher Baba suggested him to look for his son on a particular street and the boy was found. Another man, having three sons approached Meher Baba to prove Him wrong. He requested Meher Baba to be blessed with a son. Baba asked him to be sure but the man insisted and Baba okayed. The man approached his fellow villagers and said how he has fooled Meher Baba. He blessed me a son, whereas I already have three sons. Meher Baba is fraud and He does not know anything. After some time his two sons died simultaneously in a road accident and only one survived. Knowing this incident, mandali (group of close disciples) got frightened and approached Baba to tell the storey. Baba said never tries to judge a Sadguru or Avatar with malice or ulterior motive. Better would be to test Meher Baba with all sincerity and the way you want.
Supremacy of living Sadguru or Avatar
Avatar is not bound with space and time with regard to help anyone but Sadguru is. After a Sadguru drops His body, He enjoys eternal Bliss, and though the power is with Him He cannot use it. At the tomb or samadhi of a Prefect Master (Sadguru) there is spiritual power but it is the faith of the people for the disembodied Master which becomes medium to utilize the power. It is for this reason that people derive benefits by revering a Sadguru’s (Perfect Master) tomb; but the benefit accruing from such sources and drawn upon by individual’s faith is invariably material in nature. In the words of Kabir "The advantage one derives by pilgrimage is one. The benefits one derives by visiting a saint are four. But the benefits one derives by meeting a Sadguru or Avatar are numberless".
Sadguru does not take rebirth. Once a Sadguru drops His body, another God realized immediately takes His place. After dropping body, role of Sadguru to help spiritually ceases. A Jivan mukta or God –realized person can impart God-realization to one only in His life time but Avatar and Sadgurus are not limited by this and can impart instant God-realization to any number of persons since they come down to human level after God-realization. God realization is given by one master only and it is only by the grace of Avatar or Sadguru.
It is only Avatar who incarnates after a cycle of 700 to 1400 years. Avatar Krishna said “Yada yada hi dharmasya, --------sambhawami yuge yuge”. Similar Is the Meher Baba’s clarion call in which He said “Age after age, when the wick of righteousness burns low, the Avatar comes yet once again to rekindle the torch of Love and Truth. Amidst the clamour of disruptions, wars, and chaos, rings the Avatar’s call “Come All unto Me”.
Contemporary Avatar of the age is most effective in spiritual help of the mankind. It is like a sitting president of a country who is in best position to help his countrymen than a retired or expired president. Meher Baba said “100 years after dropping body, Avatar remains in full force as if He is alive. Thereafter, His universal manifestation starts”. Meher Baba also declared that 100 years after dropping My body, five Sadgurus (who are present all the time and control the universe) will not come into prominence. This means till year 2069, no one should expect to come across a living Sadguru as Avatar Meher Baba is still active and will remain till His next advent.
The Avataric period is like the spring tide of creation. This brings a new release of power, a new awakening of consciousness, a new experience of life. Qualities of energy and awareness, which has been used and enjoyed by only a few advanced souls, are made available for whole humanity. Life as whole, stepped up to a higher level of consciousness is geared to a new rate of energy. Avatar’s grace flows to one and all in the universe. He takes upon Himself universal suffering through His universal body and mind to lessen the burden of human sufferings. During the period of the Avatar, anyone whether he comes in His contact or not, has heard His name or not, is bound to be spirituality benefited by His presence in physical form.
Laying emphasis on supremacy of living Sadguru or Avatar (Man-God or God-man), Meher Baba said “Various religions are like patent medicines, just as it is necessary to approach a specialist for speedy recovery and radical care, so it is imperative to approach a spiritual master in order to become spiritually perfect. You surrender your head to barber, when you want to get your hair cut, till the work is done, similarly you must surrender yourself to a Sadguru if you want God-realization.”
“As stated by a seer, wealth may be sacrificed for health, wealth for self respect and all the three (wealth, health and self respect) for one’s own religion, but to gain God everything including religion should be sacrificed without hesitation.” Meher Baba, the Avatar of the age is the savior / supreme liberator of humanity.
Easiest and Safest Way to God Realization
Spiritual journey in contact of a living Sadguru or Avatar is the easiest and safest way to realize God. According to Meher Baba and scriptures also there are three paths to reach the goal of God-realization.
- Karma Marg/yoga
- Dhyan Marg/yoga
- Bhakti Marg/yoga
Karma Marg is to follow the rites, rituals of any religion and selfless service to others. This is very slow process since new sanskaras are formed for each action carried out howsoever intelligently. Effacement of bad sanskaras and thereby balancing of good and bad sanskaras are effected bit by bit in every rebirth. Meher Baba has compared this with travelling in a goods train which is detained indefinitely at various stations without any schedule.
Dhyan Marg consists of meditation and yoga. Meher Baba said this path is better but not the best as it has its own dangers and pitfalls. Visions and sounds experienced in meditation or mystic powers gained by yogic exercises are often misunderstood by aspirant as the final destination. Guidance of a master is essentially required to safeguard the practicener. According to Meher Baba, meditation and yoga is nothing but mental and physical exercises which conditions your mental and physical health but is of not much help in the domain of spirituality. Volumes and volumes have been written on yoga but Meher Baba simplified it by saying “You go and Yoga will come”. Advancement on higher planes of spirituality is not reversible unlike in meditation or yoga. Once an aspirant enters the first plane of subtle world of spirituality he becomes oblivious of gross world and the gross world does not affect him in subtle world. Rather subtle world superimpose over the gross world up to 4th plane. Mental world of 5th and 6th planes superimpose over gross and subtle world both. Meher Baba compared this path of meditation or yoga as travelling in an ordinary train which stops at every station according to time table and takes scheduled time to reach final destination.
Bhakti Marg is devotion, remembrance, love, obedience or surrender to Avatar or living Sadguru. In Meher Baba’s words ‘‘the easiest and safest way to lose one's self is by completely surrendering to the Perfect Master. The past, present and future of the one who has surrendered are drowned in the Master. Now he is no longer either bound by or responsible for any of his actions whether good or bad, expressed during his implicit obedience to the Master. Thus, complete surrenderance to the Sadguru (Perfect Master) or Avatar is in itself freedom. Meher Baba compared this path as travelling in a special train which will take one to the goal in shortest possible time without any halt at intermediate stations. Any aspirant would prefer to travel in special train of Bhakti Marg under guidance of Sadguru or Avatar.
Power to perform miracles is no sign of spiritual advancement. Yogi and tantric develop occult powers as a result of certain extreme exercises and can perform miracles but hardly gain any spiritual advancement. Advanced souls of lower planes of spirituality can perform big miracles but they do not do it. These occult powers gained in the traversing the spiritual path by soul of lower plane is to sustain himself unaffected in the gross world and concentrate more toward his goal without being distracted by temptation to perform miracles. Once compelled by temptation of performing miracles, if an aspirant or soul falls prey to it and performs miracles, his further spiritual advancement gets held up.
There is world of difference between the miracles wrought by Avatar or Perfect Masters and pilgrims of lower planes. Avatar or Sadguru while performing miracles uses one form of Maya to drag the worldly people away from other form of Maya. Meher Baba gave an example of a child holding a bird in its hand. If you try to snatch the bird from child’s hand, the child would probably tighten its grip on the bird. If you offer a coin, the child would definitely release the bird in order to catch coin. So miracles of Avatar or a Master (Sadguru) are like offering coin to worldly people.
Avatar and Sadguru do not perform miracle except for common cause for benefit of masses or to bring a deserving soul into His fold. Once Sadguru or Avatar is sure that the disciple is established in His fold, He starts operation by calling more and more setbacks to His disciple to withdraw his attachment from worldly things. It is like sweet given by parents to a child to draw his attention toward reading. Once the child develops interest, instead of giving sweets he is made to bear more burdens of reading and writing.
Meher Baba said “Miracles are small illusions in the great illusion called the world”. Performing miracles to attract others for own following is a proof of one’s distraction from the spiritual path. Meher Baba said “biggest miracle I have ever done is to have created this universe”. One should not give any weight to power of performing miracle. It only creates more binding for the individual in his spiritual progress.