“The greatest thing by far is to have a command of metaphor. This alone cannot be imparted by another; it is the mark of genius, for to make good metaphors implies an eye for resemblance.”
- Aristotle, Poetics (330 BC)
If last year’s diary was a journey of experiencing our Guruji’s life in subtle hues of art and aesthetics, this year we will sample his playful wit, flowing eloquence and natural ease in explaining complex concepts in simple words.
The satsang extracts in this diary are a selection of analogies that Guruji used to explain various spiritual concepts. They are rare nuggets of pure wisdom, wrapped in an analogy. Guruji took the common things of daily life – computers, cooking or farming – and used them to explain different
aspects of spirituality, such as meditation or breaking the patterns of the mind or dependence on the Sadguru. Analogies, metaphors and similes aid our understanding by containing the most truth in the smallest space: we can grasp the essence with the minimum of effort.
These satsang extracts, which on the surface are seemingly simple, are in fact layered with deeper levels of meaning. To appreciate Guruji’s words to the fullest, all it takes is for us to reflect and investigate, and the layers will peel away. The more layers we peel, the more we uncover.
Guruji’s command over language, and his clarity and ability to cut to the heart of a question, would always fill the room with dizzying awe, while his quick wit and sparkling sense of humour had us bubbling over with joy! This playful, affectionate and charismatic way of “not teaching but making us learn”, is what makes him a great teacher.
Surely if we look closely at the elements of our daily life, we will find connections to the light-hearted analogies that Guruji used in his satsangs. Memories triggered in such a way may bring a soft smile to our lips, and with deeper reflection give us many helpful insights.
On the subject of metaphors and analogies, one cannot help but feel that the only way to describe our beloved Guruji is with such imagery, even though it is always so inadequate to capture his greatness. But metaphors
are indefinite by definition and thus the perfect tool to describe the
inexpressible infinitude that is our beloved Guruji.
Below is one such humble attempt by a gurubandhu:
“To express who He is, is like talking about the sea or the sky...
Immense and with many, many colours.
His wisdom is like the Himalayas, far seeing and far reaching.
His kindness is like the pure air of the mountains.
His laughter is like a storm of relaxation.
He is precise like lightning.
He is severe like life and death.
He is impartial like the sun.
He is as steady as a rock.
He is balanced like a flying bird.
He is generous like life itself.”
Saipatham Book Team