(This talk is also available as a PDF you may download: Mark’s introduction to the Guru Gita).
From Mark Griffin:
“I’d like to talk about the text of the Guru Gita. When you go to India you see that there is an incredible tradition of spiritual training. We have very little of that tradition here in the West. Baba Muktananda’s mission to the West, which was conceived of by his Guru Bhagawan Nityananda, began a process of what I have referred to in the past as “Shaktipat on sight”. In the past, the contact and impact between Guru and disciple was very much shrouded in secrecy. You entered a very secret kind of life when you came under the grace of a Siddha Guru. I believe that out of necessity, the spiritual hierarchy realized that this entire project of human awakening needed to be carried to a more aggressive level.
It was Bhagawan Nityananda, a being of unsurpassed authority in the spiritual hierarchy, who I feel was the manager on this project and put the conditions in place for the thunderbolt of awakening to move out of the relative secrecy that enshrouded it in India. Bhagawan Nityananda gave rise to the permission blessing and empowered Muktananda to come to the West and give Shaktipat on sight. In other words, no background in spiritual training was required – all you had to do was meet him and want to be awakened. It’s unbelievable to say those words and know them to be true.
Muktananda was an extraordinarily powerful Siddha and a profound Master. He was a true Sadguru. There was also a side to him that was incredibly pragmatic. He realized that most of the people with whom he came into contact didn’t have even the slightest idea what they were getting involved in – just like you. Most of you don’t have the slightest idea what you’re involved in. I see that all the time. So, faced with the idea of striking anybody with the thunderbolt, even those who had no background, Muktananda hit upon the idea of the recitation of the Shri Guru Gita every morning. It is an unbelievably profound text and you simply recite it everyday.
If I were to define my sadhana, I could find no clearer description of the awakening process that I underwent, than the Guru Gita. Step by step, idea by idea, principle by principle, it is an incredibly profound document and it has the ability to make what is very difficult and mysterious, seem available and understandable.
In its essence, the Guru Gita is a diagram of the method by which the awakening process occurs. It describes the transmission of Shaktipat from the Guru to the disciple, which is the entire principle behind the Whispered Lineage. The Siddha Path is known as a Whisper Lineage or a Whisper Tradition. It is not written down and this very mysterious process of awakening of a human being emerges from the impact between the Guru and the disciple. The Guru Gita is essentially a mantra by and of the nature of the Guru. The mechanics of a mantra are such that the name of the mantra, the deity of the mantra, and the power of the mantra are a single thing. Therefore, the Guru Gita is a complete description of the nature of the Guru, how the Guru operates and the mysterious method by which any person can come into contact with the Guru and receive the force of the transmission.
Again, the principle is contact. The bringing together of the Guru and the disciple produces the effect of awakening. This Shaktipat transmission is authorized by Shiva himself, and so carries his full authority. Shiva is the Lord of the Guru Shakti. In this world system, at this particular time and place, he is the ruling force. The nature of Shiva is one of centrifugal dispersion, a very wrathful spinning away and decompression of all qualities into emptiness. That’s why they say that Shiva is the fast path.
By comparison, the principle of God that is known as Vishnu is one of universal cohesion, with all qualities being brought together into an infinite compression. In previous times we’ve heard about human beings who lived incredible long life spans when the process of awakening quite literally took centuries. This was when the ruling force was Vishnu driven. Vishnu, who is said to be the true face of God, is now fourteen of sixteen parts Shiva, so it’s a Shiva dominating Vishnu principle that’s active right now in our world system.
Baba was a Siddha and a Shiva Guru. That’s always a code. If a Guru is described as a Siddha, it means they’re outside a tradition, and spontaneously arise as enlightenment. They are the manifestation of a Whisper Lineage or a Whisper Tradition, and engage in the direct transmission from the Guru to the disciple. If a Guru is described as a Shiva Guru, that means that the path is the shortest possible way, because all qualities are dispersed instantaneously. If a Guru is described as a Siddha AND a Shiva Guru, it is code for the swiftest way one can move through the process of awakening. All of those principles are present here in Hard Light and it is how Hard Light operates.
It is extremely auspicious that the Guru Gita has emerged and is now becoming a part of the margena, the pathway of awakening here in Hard Light. The practice around Baba was very simple. Do the mantra, love God, welcome people. Simple. The practice here in Hard Light is also very simple – we do pretty much the same. Awareness of the SoHam. Constant exposure to the Kundalini. Come and see the teacher as frequently as you can. And out of that process, the awakening emerges. But I also now want to add the daily recitation of the Guru Gita.
I think it’s important that the Guru Gita be recited in English, because that’s our main language and more than anything, it’s essential that the meaning be understood. Baba started operating inside America in 1974 and an English version of the Gita was present as a subtext, but it was principally recited in Sanskrit. In the Hard Light recitation we focus on the English translation, because the power emerges from clearly understanding the meaning.
There is something about the way we are as people, as human beings, that even the most important truths can be easily forgotten. We’re faced with so much every day and we get rubbed very thin sometimes by the intensity of the maya. As a student of Hard Light, you’re always being reminded to hold to your discipline and plunge inward. Now you can use the recitation of the Guru Gita as a supremely powerful tool that provides an opportunity for the Guru to speak directly to you. You can see and feel how powerful it is to align yourself with the Guru and the Guru Principle, the external Guru of cause and the internal Guru of action, within you and without. It gives you the ability to punch through the proliferating obscurations of kleisha-born afflictive emotion, which is always a very fierce opponent. There are also very specific applications for protection, empowerment, the clearing of obstacles, the renewal of the heart and the purification of body, mind and spirit.
In the recitation of the Guru Gita, you align with the Guru’s force in the deepest way, across the entire spectrum of the expressions of Pinda, Pada, Rupa and Rupatita, as mentioned in verses 74-76. Those words embody principles beyond understanding, and it’s why the Guru is the Guru. Your life is impacted with Pinda, the divine Kundalini Shaktipat; Pada, the SoHam, which is the coming together of the ocean of consciousness and the creation inside your own being; Rupa, the Blue Pearl, the true form of consciousness that is the recognition of the true Self; and Rupatita, emptiness beyond all qualities, the unfoldment of infinite consciousness as the individual and universal identities dissolve into each other and become forever one.
I wanted to introduce Shri Guru Gita on this celebration of Baba Muktananda’s 26th anniversary of his Mahasamadhi. And I want it to become a part of your daily sadhana. It takes just 30 minutes to recite, and you can read the text out loud or silently to yourself. It’s going to be recited everyday at the Hard Light retreat site, Fire Mountain in Nimboli, India.
The impact of the recitation of the Guru Gita acts as a powerful point of alignment with the Vajra Guru principle – that principle of mercy and awakening that is one and the same with God. It brings the full force of the Siddha Lineage into your life. You can be having the usual trials and tribulations and by just sitting down and reciting the Guru Gita, a wash of force will go through you that will bring you clear. This is available to you now through this daily recitation.” ~ Mark Griffin, October 12, 2008, Lake Arrowhead, California