One of the greatest obstacles on our spiritual journey is the illusion that the Master is outside us. In truth, from the beginning of time, the Master has always dwelt within.
The Master is the luminosity of our own consciousness, drawing us intimately into relationship with the heart, and through the heart, into intimacy with all sentient beings. The external Master meets us one day and gazes into our eyes for no other reason but to ignite the fire of the Guru within. The Mother hugs us until we hug ourselves. Then we are free. Then the Master is free.
Meditation is simply a direct step to the Master's inner presence. I once heard beloved Mahesh Yogi say: "The impulse of the mantra that draws awareness to its source in transcendental silence, is precisely the same impulse that draws the disciple to the Master."
The true Master is formless love. Formless, but not impersonal. If I cling to the form of the Master in my mind, I lose the deeper intimacy, for I create a distance between subject and object. This is why, when Mary Magdalene reached out to touch Jesus on Easter morning, the Master said, "Noli me tangere: Don't cling to me!"
Let the breath of angels move the great stone away from the entrance to your heart. Let your mind be empty as the tomb of Christ. The gardener comes, calling your name. You are the garden, the Master is Spring.
Why then await the "second coming?" The Master never left. Why travel to India seeking a divine Presence that already Is? The Master is always already here as the very space of this moment - not the content but the awakened space that contains it.
I had a talk with Sri Sri Guruji in his room one evening, just the two of us. I was tired of the silly Ashram talk about his identity, whether he was Krishna or Jesus or Shankara come back, all that nonsense that bubbles up in the hothouse of an ashram. So I expressed my concern about this and then asked him point blank, "Who are you, really? Are you a deva, an avatar? Are you one of the great Masters from ages past?"
This question reminds me of a story at the heart of Buddhism. A disciple asked Gautama, "Are you a God, an angel, a savior?" Gautama merely smiled and said, "I am no different than you, except I am Awake." Therefor they called him simply, "Awakened One," which in Pali is "Buddha."
So I asked Guruji this question, and he silently gazed at me with eyes like black holes of empty radiance, twin voids where galaxies are born. His gaze seemed simultaneously to dissolve yet re-create me. He shook his head slowly and whispered, "No, no, they don't understand. I am Nobody." And he meant it.
This took me years to comprehend. But at that moment, I knew he was my Guru.
Longing for the Master's glance is an exquisite drama, a play that thickens the plot of devotion. Yet even as you play your role and the Guru plays his, don't get stuck in the melodrama. Know that the Master dwells between your heartbeats, nearer than your next breath. In St. Augustine's words, "Intimeor intimo meo: More inward to me than I am to myself."
A true Guru is neither lord nor lawgiver, but mirror. Look deeply into the Master's eyes, yet deeper still, until you see the boundless expanse of your own Being.
Jai Guru Dev