Let us discuss some important elements related with “Gurupornima”.

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1} गुरू – (गु+रू = गुरू)

In Bharatiya sanskriti Guru-tattva or Guru is considered as  it is beyond the descriptions, definitions and experience. But a traditional etymology based on the ‘Advayataraka Upanishad’ ( line 16 ) describes the syllables ‘Gu ‘ as darkness and ‘ Ru ’ as destroyer , thus meaning  one who destroys / dispels darkness.

गुशब्दस्त्वन्धकारस्यात् रुशब्दस्तन्निरोधकः |

अन्धकारनिरोधित्वात् गुरुरित्यभिधीयते ||


2} ज्ञान – (Medium of Enlightenment)

It is a matter of fact to discuss that how can one destroy the darkness and what does this darkness mean? Gurugeeta explains it as follows ,

अज्ञानतिमिरान्धस्य ज्ञानाञ्जनशलाकया |

चक्षुरुन्मीलितं येन तस्मै श्रीगुरवे नमः ||

The verse above states that “Salute to the guru , who opens the eyes of a person who is blind due to darkness of ignorance( by knowledge)”. Thus, it  means  that darkness  indicates  अज्ञान  while ज्ञान  is the  medium of enlightenment by which Guru dispels the darkness.

3} गुरूत्व – (Power of Guru)

In physics, the term गुरूत् is called as gravity. It is a natural phenomenon by which all the things having mass or energy are brought towards one another.  But this concept is just a part of गुरूत्व. The concept of “ गुरूत्व and गुरुत्वाकर्षण goes beyond the concepts of “ Gravity and  Gravitational Force” in science.

गुरूत्व awakens  one’s knowledge by destroying the layer of ignorance. गुरूत्व  keeps one towards self –realization (आत्मज्ञान) through various processes like  समत्व , स्थिरता , समाधि . These 3 terms are explained in the section below.


4} गुरुत्वाकर्षण – (Applied force of Gurutva)

It is the process when the Guru and his disciple both are attracted towards each other where his disciple experiences a different change, both mentally and physically in his life. Some of the terms related with his experience are described in श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता.

a) समत्व

आत्मौपम्येन सर्वत्र समं पश्यति योऽर्जुन |

सुखं वा यदि वा दुखं योगी परमो मतः || [6.32]

 An obedient disciple of Guru observes the same element (तत्त्व) in everything in the world. Also he accepts all the sorrowful and joyful situations with the equal amount of intensity in his life. That means he doesn’t find any difference in the situations whether it is sorrowful or joyful.

b) स्थिरता

दुःखेष्वनुद्विग्नमनाःसुखेषु विगतस्पृहः |

वीतरागभयक्रोधः स्थितधीर्मुनिरुच्यते || [2.56]

  His mind experiences exceptional intellectual stability. He is able to control all his feelings and emotions in any situations. Hence, he is called as ‘स्थितधी’ or ‘स्थितप्रज्ञ’.

c) समाधि

सर्वभूतस्थितं यो मां भजत्येकत्वमास्थितः |

सर्वथा वर्तमानोऽपि योगी मयि वर्तते || [6.31]


         He not only realizes but adopts that गुरूत्व within him .He also experiences the same गुरुतत्त्व in the outer world  and starts becoming caring in nature about everything in the  world, thinking as if everything is a form of supreme power by his sacred service ,without any ego, selflessly.

 (For example- Dattatreya, the Guru of Gurus had observed it in various entities – श्रीमद्भागवत महापुराण).

So, the knowledge is the medium of enlightenment while गुरूत्व  is the root source of it. It is the power of Guru which itself is responsible for the conversion of ज्ञान  into  आत्मज्ञान .


5} पौर्णिमा – (Symbol of Completeness)

पौर्णिमा is the word used for full moon in Sanskrit which suggests the most flourished and complete state ( कला ) ,here it implies ‘of  गुरूत्व . So, the enlightened humans, sages, monks experiences all the Brahmand within Guru and and Guru as Brahmand.

अखण्डं मण्डलाकारं व्याप्तं येन चराचरम् |

त्वत्पदं दर्शितं येन तस्मै श्रीगुरवे नमः || (गुरू गीता )


श्रीगुरू ग्रन्थसाहिबजी teaches the same philosophy ,

जि पुरखु नदरि आवई तिस

का किआ करि कहिआ जाई |

बलिहारी गुर आपने जिनि

हिरदै दिता दिखाई ||

  • The lines tells: “Anything for Guru, who realized the presence of God (param poorakh) in my heart.” This is the Gurutva of Guru.This is the proof of his completeness.

6}  आषाढ पौर्णिमा  – (Importance of the Day)

  1. In the yogic tradition, the day is celebrated as the occasion when the God शिव became the first Guru, as he began the transmission of yoga to the सप्तर्षि (seven disciple rishis) .
  2. Also it is believed that the great sage वेदव्यास  was born on this day who categorized Vedas into four branches, author of eighteen Puranas, Mahabharata, Brahmasutras  and had taught God Dattatreya, who is regarded as the Guru of Gurus. So  वेदव्यास  is  regarded as the symbol of guru-shishya parampara . And the day is celebrated as Gurupurnima as well as Vyaspornima.
  3. After  the foundation of ‘Sangha’ by the Lord Buddha , he gave his first sermon called as “Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta“ to the five enlightened monks on the full moon day of Ashadha. Hence Buddhists celebrate the festival in honor of the Lord Buddha.
  4. According to Jain tradition, it was on this day, the 24th Tirthankara ,after attaining Kaivalya, made Indrabhuti Gautam, later known as Gautam Swami, a Ganadhara, his first disciple thus becoming a Treenok Guha himself, therefore in Jainism it is observed as “Treenok Guha Purnima”, and is marked as a special veneration to one’s Treenok Guhas and Teachers.
  5. The Sikhs too observe it as an honor to their Ten Spiritual Gurus.

7} गुरुपौर्णिमा – (Dedication to the Guru)

So , Gurupurnima is a spiritual tradition in Bharatiya Sanskriti dedicated to the spiritual and academic teachers, who are evolved or enlightened humans, ready to share their wisdom, with very little or no monetary expectation.

This is the day which memorizes us our knowledge based “Guru-Shishya paramparas” which still can be observed in our culture. गुरूत्व is the प्राण (surviving element) of these paramparas while गुरूत्वाकर्षण is the procedure(प्रक्रिया) to experience it. गुरू is the मूलतत्त्व which guides us abolishing darkness of अज्ञान and गुरूपौर्णिमा is the day which inspires us to attain  enlightenment and make us realize the purest form of happiness (आनन्द)in the universe(जगत) by self-realization (आत्मज्ञान) .


  1. Virendra Deshpande

    Very enlightening article. May Guru bless you with his grace all the time.

  2. Nilkanth Deshmukh

    Article 7 emphasizes on enlightened on Gurutva, mulatatva n Guruparampara in simple language.shubheccha For Guruparampara.

  3. Govind K Joshi

    The details within the article is very much enlightening .The subject chosen too doesn’t allow me to comment without phatoming in deep in the subject. I express my inability in that regard. Govind K. Joshi at present Pandharpur.

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