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Guru Poornima

Aashaadha poornima day is dedicated to Guru Pooja. On this day we remember the great saints and the gurus who elucidated the mystery of the universe and the creator. Foremost amongst them is sage Vyasa, who classified the accumulated spiritual knowledge of the Vedas under four heads - Rig, Yajur, Saama and Atharva. To him goes the credit of composing the authentic treatise of Brahma-sootras to explain the background of Vedas. He also wrote the eighteen Puranas, the stories of our great heroes and saints, to carry the spiritual and moral precepts contained therein to the common masses.


The greatest of epics of all times and of all climes - Mahaabhaarata - embodying the immortal song of God, the Bhagavad Geeta, also in it, is also the priceless gift of Vyasa. The Shri Madbhaagavata Mahapuran, the thrilling and devotional story of Sri Krishna, was also his contribution. It is in the fitness of things that Vyasa should be looked upon as the supreme preceptor of mankind. In his honour the day is also known as Vyasa Poornima.


The inspiration for all this compilation of knowledge is divine and coming directly from the fountainhead of the universe itself. So the supreme guru of the universe is none other than the creator Himself.  A daily prayer of devout vaishnavas read as:


Vasudev sutam devam, kamsa charnoor mardanam|

Devaki parmanandam ,Krishnam vande jagadgurum ||


Meaning goes as: Prostrations to Krishna, the son of Vasudev, bestower of divine happiness to Devaki, demolisher of ego of demon Kamsa and Charnoor, the Universal Guru.


The clear message here is: there is no difference between the Guru and God. They are one and the same. Inspired from here we have a prayer in honour of Guru as under:


Gururbrahmaa gururvishnuh gururdevo Maheswarah |
Guruh-saakshaat parabrahma tasmai shrigurave namah ||


Meaning as “My salutations to the Guru who is Brahma, Vishnu and Maheswara. The Guru is Parabrahma incarnate".


The seeker should apply a little discrimination here – as guru is considered the Parabrahma incarnate, the devotee should look for and realize that divine spark in the personality of guru before submitting. On the other hand, it is perfectly alright to adopt Shri Krishna or any other form of proven divinity as guru and following the path to salvation.




The tradition of celestial Gurus coming on to the earth and revealing the truth and true path continues. We are not attempting to give a complete list of such divinities but a few names that come to mind promptly are: Gautam Buddha, Adi Shanker, Shri Ramanujacharya, Shri Vallabhacharya, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Swami Shri Haridas, Gowami Tulsidas, Shri Nimbarkacharya, Shri Hit Harivansha, Shri Ram Krishna Paramhans, Swami Vivekanand, Guru Nanakdev, Swami Dayanand Saraswati and many others.


This presentation is dedicated to Shri Bankey Bihari Mandir, Vrindavan. The tradition was started by Swami Shri Haridas, who was the incarnation of Shri Lalita, the image and intimate friend of Shri Radhey. Swami Shri Haridas elucidated the path to Nikunj Ras through complete surrender. He is considered to be the Adya Acharya( original Guru) propagating Madhury Bhakti. However in Brijmandal, Madhury Bhakti as well as Prema Bhakti both are widely practiced and are intermixed beyond recognition. We have a daily prayer common to our beloved Thakurji Shri Bankey Bihariji Maharaj and our revered Guru Swami Shri Haridasji as:  


Namah kunj biharinyai, namah kunj biharine|

Swami shri haridasay gurunam guruve namah||


That means: prostration to Lord Kunjbiharini- Kunjbihari. Prostrations to Swami Shri Haridas who is guru of all gurus.






On this day, the temple as well Nidhivan both of the places are tastefully decorated. As we know the very meaning of the term Bihari is supreme enjoyer, such decorations are rather a daily affair. The ritual of Panchamrit abhishek (ceremonial bath with cow dung, milk, curd, honey and water) is conducted at Nidhivan in the morning. Devotees throng Nidhivan as well as the temple to pay respects to the guru and seek his grace. In the evening Phool Bangla (a palace of flowers) is erected in Nidhivan, at the Samadhi Mandir of Swami Shri Haridas.


So, on this Guru Poornima day wherever you are, meditate on Swami Shri Haridas, the Guru of all Gurus . You can have a view of Samadhi Mandir in our picture gallery. And pray earnestly:


Asato ma sadgamay, tamso ma jyotirgamay, mrityor ma amritamgamay|


O divine Guru, guide me to realty from illusion, to light from darkness, to eternal from perishable.

Festival Significance : Phool Bangla for Swami Haridas in Nidhivan
Festival Date (Hindu Calender) : Aasharh Shukla Poornima
Festival Date (English Calender) : Sun, Jul 21, 2024

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