Guru Bhakti

A Guru is a master who has realized his Self, ever joyful, full of love and has become very dear to God. The purpose of our life is to realize our Self and unite with Divine but we get caught up in so many things and become ignorant of this real purpose. Only a Guru can remove the ignorance and help the disciple to evolve and realize the blissful state of Divine like himself. To receive the Love, Knowledge, Grace that is flowing from Guru, one need to have Guru Bhakti or devotion towards Guru.  Developing Guru Bhakti is the way towards Divine as Guru is none other than God Himself in human form. Having Bhakti towards a Guru is nothing but having Bhakti towards Divine. Serving Guru is serving the Divine Himself

Now a question might arise as how to develop Guru Bhakti? Many Saints and Scriptures have spoken about developing Guru Bhakti. With my Guru’s guidance, I had the opportunity to read the book “Guru Bhakti Yoga” by Swami Sivananda and will explain from that. Swami Sivananda says that Faith, Obedience and Surrender are the three main things in developing Guru Bhakti.

First one should have faith in Guru which is having confidence and trust in the words and actions of Guru.  Then show obedience which is being sincere and carrying out the tasks given by Guru irrespective of the situations. Finally surrender to Guru which is submitting oneself completely to the will of Guru.  As the disciple starts showing faith and obedience, slowly Guru’s Grace descends on the disciple and helps the disciple to surrender. The more the disciple surrenders, the more Grace flows and takes the disciple closer to the Divine.


Some people have laziness, ego and carefree attitude. Obedience will help to overcome them through way of doing the action. I recently read a story on “Obedience to Guru” from and would like to share it with you.

Once Guru Nanak, founder of Sikhism was sleeping at night in his thatched house. It was a windy and rainy day. That night the wall next to Guru Nanak collapsed and rain water started to pour in. Guru Nanak sent for his disciple and asked him to fix the wall. The disciple knew nothing about masonry work but he said to himself, “My Guru has asked me to fix the wall. I have to do it!” and started fixing the wall. After some time, he finished. But Guru Nanak wasn’t happy and told the disciple to re do it again. Without any hesitation, the disciple broke the wall and tried again. When he finished the 2nd time, Guru Nanak again found fault and asked him to re do it. So the disciple broke it and started again. Like this, three or four times the disciple built the wall, and each time his Guru said he was not satisfied. Guru Nanak’s sons began to laugh at the disciple and advised to send for a mason to complete the task as their father will not get satisfied.

The disciple patiently answered them, “No matter how many times it takes, I will keep on trying to please my Guru.” On completing the wall for the 7th time, Guru Nanak said, “I am satisfied and pleased with your obedience. You are truly my best disciple by virtue of your obedience.”

Sometimes we feel lazy, tired and postpone things. But when I read the story, I was reminded of how the disciple was able to overcome the lower dictates of his mind and complete the task. The disciple might have felt lazy to do the task at midnight or have got annoyed to be made to do it again and again. But with obedience and willingness to serve the Guru, he was able to ignore any such thoughts and served the Guru happily.

Guru Bhakti

The disciple in the story didn’t knew about masonry and might have given an excuse to not to do the task. Rather he took up the task and completed it not just once but seven times. Swami Sivananda rightly says that, “An obedient disciple never procrastinates nor gives excuse”. This is something to remember before giving any excuse to your Guru in the future.

He also says that, “Obedience is better than reverence to Guru”. It is very true. Anyone can have respect to a person who is full of love and knowledge. But being obedient and carrying out the words of the Guru is difficult and most important requirement for a disciple.

As we grow in Guru Bhakti, we start doing tasks for the love towards Guru and finds peace in serving the Guru. This will be the hallmark of Obedience as explained by Swami Sivananda. We can help ourselves to develop Guru Bhakti by practicing true obedience.


5 Responses to “Guru Bhakti”

  1. Sanjai Athi Says:

    Dear Sriram,
    Just like we have an education system that teaches science, math ..etc, we certainly require a Guru to teach us who we really are. Only a person who has gone through this path can guide us. We are fortunate to have our Guru. Being fortunate is one thing and what we do with this is a different thing. Guru Bhakti is something we may not realize overnight. The more open we are, we will better understand Guru Bhakti and its significance. The example you have provided illustrates the obedience aspect very well.

  2. Devraj Karthikeyan Says:

    Dear Sriram anna,

    A very good article and well summarized. The story explains the core concept of the article well. I have learned a lot from the article.


  3. Raghu Says:

    Dear Sriram,
    The article was very good and nice to knowing the friendship between Guru and Disciple,and Article was well explained about a true disciple how to act with Guru by their qualities, learned more things from this article.
    Thank you very much for your effort and sharing with us.

  4. Raghu Says:

    Dear Sriram,
    I had a question before,that why Guru give task to everyone to do it,even everyone has a work,I understood this question through the story of Guru Nanak,The true disciple should have faith,obedient,surrender to Guru is wonderful.

    Thank you,

  5. Anuradha Says:

    Dear Sriram, thank you very much for very good article. The story of Gurunanak’s disciple is very touching. One must have faith and obedience to surrender himself to Guru. This story very well explains this.

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