Monday, October 19, 2009

Can there be a Siddha Yoga without a Guru?


Dear Gurumayi
I remember with some melancholy my days in the Ashram, one thing I’ve learned: don’t be influenced by gossip and chatter. Your worst enemies are some of your followers and You must be partially responsible for it, to say the least. This “I am Shiva” has been misunderstood for “I’ll do whatever I want” including eating disorderly, lack of discipline and in general , disrespect for the teachings and for others. Siddha yogis have become egoistic, ritualistic and fanatic, more obsessed with the pronunciation of the Guru Gita than with its meaning, more focused on the form than on the content. The question is: can there be Siddha Yoga without a Guru? (Form without content) It is true that the Guru has always been taught as a principle, as an abstract, as the Absolute but it is also true that there has always been a physical relation with the Teacher, essential for the gift of the Shakti to occur. Only a living Guru, with two arms and two leg can give Shaktipat, according to the Guru Gita. You have transformed this Guru-Disciple relationship into a purely abstract relation, a blind reaching for an inner self many times hidden under layers of ignorance for many of us, this makes us no different from other Religions or cults in which followers pray to the Unknown and with hope wait for answers. In Siddha yoga there was no need for “hope” there was reality! In Siddha Yoga the answers came from the words of the Guru but now your lips are closed and the disciples are confused talking to each other and to our egos, in search for answers. The problem is that we are not reaching deep enough, our meditations have become prayers and the answers to those prayers are basically “do whatever you want” or “You like it, go for it” Shivoham misunderstood. We are lost with no clear guidance. Videos or swamis will not do, without You there is no SYDA, I believe. Please renew the so much needed direct relationship with us your devotees and allow our egos to dissolve in the ocean of bliss.

Anon

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is a heartfelt and moving letter. It rings true. A form without content, this is what Siddha Yoga has become. So true, the remark about becoming obsessed with the pronounciation of the Guru Gita, if that was what counts. Something has been going deeply wrong with this path, and you, Gurumayi, do not take responsibility for it. Have the strength to correct your mistakes, as we all have to.

SeekHer said...

If Siddha Yoga is considered as a body of teachings, rather than a relationship with a figurehead, then maybe SY has become content without a form attached to it?

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Anonymous said...

Intensives were live events; New Year’s messages were also live events but why, perhaps because there was enough money to pay for the satellite broadcasts? Or on the contrary, was the money there because without it, the live broadcast could not happen? It was well understood by all, that you had to be present to receive Shaktipat, not even near the Hall but in it. Unfortunately the latest intensives and messages have been reruns of previous years, like beautiful canned products. I am sorry but Illumination cannot come in DVD format and all you need to do is watch, how many times can you watch it before the shakti is gone? Is there prana in a frozen vegetable, or does the energy of the Sun and the elements have to pulsate within it to nurture you before it dies out? The whole idea was to be present at the precise instant when, by the deliberate will of the Guru, the gift of Shakti was bestowed, dissolving somehow the apparent duality and becoming both, One. We've all experienced this marvel in awe and wonder. There lies the necessity for the relationship with a figurehead. Without the form there is no content, saying the contrary may sound cool or thought provoking perhaps (arupa), but it’s untrue. What is better, a tender kiss on your lips or remembering an kiss? You say Siddha yoga is now a body of teachings instead of a relationship with a figurehead? I'm sorry, that is not Siddha yoga or let’s say, was not. If the Guru is somewhere in heaven and all we have are the swamis and teachers, like modern priests invoking the Almighty, acting as intercessors between the devotees and the Devoted, then something is missing, this has become a religion based on faith, it’s no longer a Yoga based on experience, which is ok like in most religions, but that’s not what I or many of us signed for. Finally, if you love someone dearly but this someone is never around and does not even want to see you, no matter how attached you were, with time you’ll get over it and stop loving this person, if lucky you’ll find love somewhere else, that’s better than becoming bitter and denying Love itself.

Anonymous said...

It’s been announced recently almost with irony that “Guess what? Your intention has been realized. Your dream has come true. Your wish has been granted. You get to do exactly what you intended, what you dreamt, and what you wished for—in the year 2010. Gurumayi is blessing us again with the Aum Sadhana for the year 2010. Those who attended the Sweet Surprise Satsang in 2009 will have an opportunity to go deeper into the practice of the Siddha Yoga Message in the coming year” Again we are told there will be a rerun of the previous year’s message but telling us this is exactly “what we dreamt” . That’s not what I dreamt, just the way its phrased is a bit disturbing, trying to convince you, you want something you don’t. Only blind fanatics could say that’s right we won’t see Gurumayi again, we’ll hear a recording, just as I wanted! When they know everyone is shouting where are you? they even go further by saying “Whether it is your first time, your second time, or your tenth time participating“ I understand one teaching can be eternal such as “love your neighbor as yourself” or in this case “God dwells within you as you” This teachings have no expiration date so you can reflect on them forever until you realize fully its meaning and intention. But to tell us we will hear this year the same message we received last year in the same manner as this year’s only intensive was the rerun of last years and pretend that that’s what we are hoping for is just unexplainable. Yupi, great! We get to continue wondering where is she, why the silence, just what we are all dreaming of, a big question mark. Thanks for allowing me to share my thoughts here and I wish others would speak out. Am I so wrong? Am I alone? Is this really your dream come true? Blessings to all in this Thanks Giving Day, a bit ironic I know.

Anonymous said...

There are so many absurd ideas in the invitation or threat, that it’s difficult to decide with which one to start. One thing in clear, the waves of dissent have arrived at the shores of the Guru’s feet. Even in the most filtered and hand picked group of people you could create, they are asked to produce a sharing no longer that 45 seconds, with infinite gratitud, if you are “Off Topic” therefore not grateful, you will surely be silenced by a gong, and theofensive laughter of your peers! Not my peers. It clearly exposes the discomfort SY marketing executives (or swamis however you want to call them) have to allow spontaneous and free expressions of ideas for fear of someone standing up to what is right and saying what needs to be said, which will not aligned of course with their so called guidelines. I can almost hear the nervous laughter of the automats obeying instructions, how spontaneous they sound indeed, all under a threat of banishment for life and even of dying before the end of the year! as they themselves incredibly and openly admit. What's this, the Inquisition? And we all know how true that is, how many greay peopel have been punished for simply having a mind of their own. Syda Yoga is fast to condemn you and till you die! So much for the good old "welcome with all my heart", yeah right! So be careful with what you say in those precious 45 seconds! Be sure it's a happy something, no matter what, or else... Can’t wait to make my own sharing! It’s just a group of stockholders protecting their brand and their CEO. About the flowers never smelled by any living being, Oh please cut the BS.
Happy birthday Coca Cola...

Anonymous said...

Hi, well it is fantastic that you identify that SY is not for you, because you are looking at finger that indicates the moon and not to the beauty of the moon. Now what can you do instead talking about the dirty finger? Look to another form of escape and pass the rest of your life running way saying that you are seeking happiness? Or are you going stop running way and realize the violence, the greed, the envy, the fear and hate that you have creat for your life and every single day realize that is a habit builded by thought which you keep feeding ouver and ouver again and see that paying the whole atention without judgement or will of atain anything one day you could look with clean eyes for the reactions of your gossip mind until it died because you´ll not feed it anymore.Instead you can spend all your energy in this madness of "thought prosses" and live like a man in the desert who have a leak in his bottle of water.

Anonymous said...

Hi, well it is fantastic that you identify that SY is not for you, because you are looking at finger that indicates the moon and not to the beauty of the moon. Now what can you do instead talking about the dirty finger? Look to another form of escape and pass the rest of your life running way saying that you are seeking happiness? Or are you going stop running way and realize the violence, the greed, the envy, the fear and hate that you have creat for your life and every single day realize that is a habit builded by thought which you keep feeding ouver and ouver again and see that paying the whole atention without judgement or will of atain anything one day you could look with clean eyes for the reactions of your gossip mind until it died because you´ll not feed it anymore.Instead you can spend all your energy in this madness of "thought prosses" and live like a man in the desert who have a leak in his bottle of water.

Anonymous said...

This is the first time I have commented on this blog. I was in SY from 1987 to 2001 spent many hours doing seva in SF and went to India twice.

The subtitle of this blog is: "When the Guru holds us spellbound, how can we ever truly be free?"

A truly vexing question because GM has retired with no successor and SY as an organization, certainly as we knew it, no longer exists.

That is the root of the problem suggested by the title of this blog.

GM did not die - she simply and completely withdrew. SY as an organization did not decertify itself in anyway. It is like a corporation that has had all of its assets removed but still stays registered with the state.

In short, there has never been an actual end to the process that started with Muk's first world tour in 1970 and all of us have been left to deal with the disintegration of something that was very important in our lives.

When something important ends we usually have a ceremony to help us accept its passing. It can be a graduation, a retirement ceremony a wake or a funeral. These ceremonies allow us a ritual to mark the end of a situation and move on with our lives.

Because of the way GM chose to disappear and SY became a shell we were never given an opportunity to mark their end causing a great many of us lingering pain.

Therefore, I propose that this Labor Day, September 3, 4 and 5, in the Catskills, there be a reunion and “Farewell to SY Gathering” where we can all get together one last time and respectfully but unequivocally formally acknowledge the end of SY.

It is my hope that such a gathering would help heal the pain that so many of us feel and allow us to become whole.

Anyone interested?

Anonymous said...

What are you all talking about?

Gurumayi is still around the ashram in the Catskills and in India (where my friend is an MD, and has been since 2003-2004).

IF you believe that the physical Guru needs to be present for his or her Grace to be present, then you simply do not understand the Guru- Disciple relationship.

Jesus, Paramahansa Yoganandaji, Bade Baba, Baba Muktananda, Anandamayi Ma, etc., etc., etc., ALL continue to teach me in various ways, at various times, with varying degrees of intensity.

YOU are the GURU you are searching for.

GURUMAYI's body is NOT the Guru.

Read the Guru Gita.
You are singing to your SELF...your Inner Self.

You are THAT which you are searching for.

And Gurumayi was most definitely seen at SMA after 2004 N Y program (if anyone was at that program in Muktananda Mandir, I was the one who walked up to her chair after the cameras went down. Security tried to stop me...but Gurumayi insisted she allow me to speak to her. I never treated her like something other then my Self --except at the very beginning. She STILL honors and accepts people into the ashram...check the site.).
Gurumayi was available, walking around SMA until the ashram closed to day visitors in Sept 2004.
I spoke to her on her birthday...in the hallway, when she was walking with her dogs. I asked her the dogs names and she told me, very kindly. Again...I treated her as a friend-- with great respect, of course, as with all friends, but I never treated her as unapproachable ...and I think that's why she always talked to me...well, except once, in the beginning...when she stared back at me mirroring ALL of my insecurities! Haha! Aahhh...but it's her job to crack the ego...and she did...and I learned from it. Wow...did I learn!
Ram Das calls this "Fierce Grace".

My mother got shaktipat from Gurumayi 's photograph about two years ago.

She is and will always be a conduit of Grace.

You must Realize that the Greatness you projected onto Gurumayi is your own Greatness..she was mirroring that back to you and you refused to own it yourselves.

I am bedridden.
I could not visit the ashram now even if I wanted to.
(I never worked at nor lived at the ashram outside of visits with seva.)

Gurumayi's presence has never been stronger in my life than now...because I am That and I receive the Grace she bestows upon me wholeheartedly.

You don't need to be suffering.
I am truly sorry you are suffering.

Please...go back and read the Guru Gita and read it as if you are reading about yourself...your Self.

Read the Sveshvashvetara Upanishad.

Read ANY spiritual text and know that YOU are THAT which you are searching for.

Yes...

YOU are that GREAT!!!

Every single one of you.

And if Siddha Yoga is not your path; find a path that helps you reach your fullest potential.

Life is short...I know that for sure!

No more wasting time looking back.

Look within.

God Bless.

Bhakti

Anonymous said...

By the way-- I LOVE your profile picture. I just realized it is Shree Ganesha. Beautiful! :)

Bhakti

Anonymous said...

Again...I would like to reiterate:

It is absolutely not true that a physical Guru need be present to receive his or her Grace.

I got my first hit of Shaktipat while chanting Om Namah Shivaya at a retreat: Gurumayi was no where near...except her voice. I never even saw a picture of her face and had not yet heard of Siddha Yoga.

My mother got shaktipat from Gurumayi's photo on my puja.

I got a hit of shaktipat from a photo of Anandamayi Ma ....I had never heard of her...I happened upon her photo by accident on Google back in 2002-2003. I was in a state of unity for over 24 hours.

The thought of Jesus brings me home.

All of these things are a relection of what is already within.

Look within my friends.

Please... look within.

Tvat Tvam Asi!

Wholehearted blessings.
Bhakti