Guru Mahima -2 - The grace of the Guru had bestowed Jnana (wisdom).
Radhe Krishna To All,
On the occasion of Guru Poornima, Nama Dwaar presents to all the devotees,
a series on the glory of the Guru, - excerpts from Sri Sri Muralidhara
Guru Mahima Contd...
Thottakacharya was one of the four chief disciples of Adi Sankara. His pre-monastic name was Giri. Sankara has written commentary for the Brahma sutram, Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, etc. He has established Advaita philosophy. One day, as usual, he was conducting a Sutra bhashya class. Through advatia philosophy he has established that the world perceived is illusory. How difficult it is to comprehend this philosophy. Several highly learned men including ascetics were seated in front of him to listen to his exposition.
Giri, the attendant of Sankara, was a dull head. He knew not a single alphabet. All efforts to educate him had failed and he had been sent to Sankara to serve him. He had developed deep bhakti for the Guru (Sankara). He would keep looking at his Guru. Whenever Sankara discoursed, Giri would enjoy the holy Feet and beatific face of his Guru. He would carry the clothes of his Guru when the latter went to the river for bath, would wash his clothes after he had bathed. Washing the Guru's clothes was no ordinary matter for him. He would tell Sankara, "My Lord! Please go, I will wash your clothes and bring them." After Sankara had left, he would place the Guru's clothes down and circumambulate it several times and bow down to it. He would place it reverentially over his eyes, place it on his head and dance about singing, "Sadguro pahimam, parama dayalo rakshamam!" The clothes of his Guru would appear to him verily as the Guru, Himself. He possessed such deep, inexplicable devotion to the Guru.
One day, Sankara was seated on the platform with several highly intelligent disciples seated in front of him. He did not begin the class. Just as a cow would look out for its calf, so too, Sankara awaited the arrival of Giri. One of the students took courage to ask softly, "Lord! All of us have assembled. Why have you not begun the class?"
Sankara said, "Giri is yet to come."
The scholarly disciples looked at each other and laughed mockingly. Their laugh seemed to say, 'whatever you are teaching us is not easily comprehensible even by us who are highly intelligent. Giri is a dull head.
Why then do you desire to wait for him to begin the class?'
Sankara did not laugh; He did not chastise them, either. Thinking of Giri deep compassion flowed out of him. He thought, 'Oh, this child considers me as his only refuge. These disciples are laughing at him who is so devoted to me.' At once the grace in him came out as 'divya tejas' (divine luster) and went over to Giri who was on the banks of the river washing his (Guru's) clothes. The 'divya tejas' surrounded Giri and at once he underwent the highest spiritual experience! Clapping his hands he began to sing,
'Vidhithakila shaasthra sudha jhaladhe
mahithopanishadh kathithartha nidhe
hrudhaye kalaye vimalam charnam
bhava Sankara Deshika mey sharnam'
(I surrender unto the Lotus Feet of Guru Sankara, the ocean water of shastra and one who has written commentaries on the Upanishads. His pure Feet I bear in my heart and think of them)
Singing so, he came to Sankara's presence. While all the others were trying to comprehend Truth through their intelligence, to Giri, the disciple who had earned the grace of the Guru Sankara, it became a living reality! As he sang it in the metre called 'thotakam' he came to be known as 'Thotakachaarya'. The stotra is known as 'Thotakashtakam'.
The grace of the Guru had bestowed Jnana (wisdom).
!!! Guru Mahima - 3 will follow !!!
Sri.Sri.Muralidhara Swamiji's Irai Bhakthi discourse Series in Tamil from Vijay TV....Episode 2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZniipT7pTc - Part –1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5TeXnDNV_bQ - Part-2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7GIUVd9AqE - Part -3
Chant the Mahamantra Nama kirtan :
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
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