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Guru Purnima

Guru Purnima <3
A guru blessing a student
Official name South Asian's Teachers day
Observed by Hindu devotees/disciples and Buddhists
Celebrations National Holiday In Nepal.
Observances guru puja
Date Ashadha Purnima (Shukla paksha, Bright lunar fortnight Full Moon) (June–July)
2015 date July 31
Frequency annual

Guru Purnima is an Indian and Nepalese festival dedicated to spiritual and academic teachers. This festival is traditionally celebrated by Hindus, Jains and Buddhists, to pay their respects to their teachers and express their gratitude. The festival is celebrated on the full moon day (Purnima) in the Hindu month of Ashadha (June–July) of the Shaka Samvat, which is the known as Hindu calendar in India and nepal.[1] This day marks the first peak of the lunar cycle after the peak of the solar cycle.

Contents

  • Observances 1
  • Hindu legend 2
  • Yogic lore 3
  • Buddhist history 4
  • Observances by Buddhists and Hindus 5
  • Observations in Nepal 6
  • Tradition in Indian academics 7
  • Jainism 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10

Observances

The celebration is marked by ritualistic respect to the guru, Guru Puja. The Guru Principle is said to be a thousand times more active on the day of Gurupurnima than on any other day.[2] The word guru is derived from two words, gu and ru. The Sanskrit root gu means darkness or ignorance, and ru denotes the remover of that darkness. Therefore, a guru is one who removes the darkness of our ignorance. Gurus are believed by many to be the most necessary part of life. On this day, disciples offer puja (worship) or pay respect to their guru (spiritual guide). In addition to having religious importance, this festival has great importance for Indian academics and scholars. Indian academics celebrate this day by thanking their teachers as well as remembering past teachers and scholars.

Traditionally the festival is celebrated by Buddhists in honor of the lord Buddha who gave His first sermon on this day at kirtan session and havan at many places, where devotees from all over gather at the ashrams, matha or place where the seat of Guru, Guru Gaddi exists.[11] This day also sees the ritual of padapuja, the worships of Guru's sandals, which represent his holy feet and is seen a way of rededicating to all that a Guru stands for.[12] Disciples also recommit themselves on thPrabhuis day, towards following their teacher's guidance and teachings, for the coming year.[10] A mantra that is particularly used on this day is "Gurur Brahma, Gurur Vishnu, Gurur Devo Maheshwara, Guru Sakshat Parabrahmah Tasmai Shree Guru Veh Namah". This day is also seen as an occasion when fellow devotees, Guru Bhai (disciple-brother), express their solidarity to one another in their spiritual journey.[13]

Observations in Nepal

In Nepal, Guru Purnima is a big day in schools. This day is teacher's day for Nepalese ; mostly Students. Students honor their teachers by offering delicacies, garlands, and special hats called topi made with indigenous fabric. Students often organize fanfares in schools to appreciate the hard work done by teachers. This is taken as a great opportunity to consolidate the bond of teacher-student relationships.

Tradition in Indian academics

Irrespective of their religions, Indian academics celebrate this day by thanking their teachers. Many schools, colleges and universities have events in which students thanks their teachers and remember past scholars. Alumni visit their teachers and present gifts as a gesture of gratitude.

Jainism

According to Jain traditions, it was on this day, falling at the beginning of CHAUMASAAS" , the four month rainy season retreat, Mahavira, the 24th Tirthankara, after attaining Kaivalya, made Indrabhuti Gautam, later known as Gautam Swami, a Ganadhara, his first disciple, thus becoming a Guru himself, therefore it is observed in Jainism as Guru Purnima, and is marked special veneration to one's Gurus and teachers.[14]

References

  1. ^ Article "Guru Poornima (Vyas Puja)" As on 22 July 2013 on www.Sanatan.org
  2. ^ Article "The Guru Principle" As on 22 July 2013 on www.Sanatan.org
  3. ^ "The Significance of Guru Purnima". Isha Foundation. Retrieved July 9, 2014. 
  4. ^ Sharma, Brijendra Nath (1978). Festivals of India. Abhina Publications. p. 88. 
  5. ^ a b Awakening Indians to India. Chinmaya Mission. 2008. p. 167.  
  6. ^ Sehgal, Sunil (1999). Encyclopaedia of hinduism: (H - Q)., Volume 3. 8176250643. Sarup & Sons. p. 496. 
  7. ^  
  8. ^ Wadley, Susan Snow (2005). Essays on North Indian folk traditions. Orient Blackswan. p. 64.  
  9. ^ "Classical Yoga: An Introduction to the Origin of Yoga". Isha Foundation. Retrieved March 15, 2013. 
  10. ^ a b c What Is Hinduism?: Modern Adventures Into a Profound Global Faith. Himalayan Academy Publications. p. 230.  
  11. ^ Sharma, Vijay Prakash (1998). The sadhus and Indian civilisation. Anmol Publications. p. 160.  
  12. ^ Subramuniyaswami, Satguru Sivaya (2003). Dancing With Siva: Hinduism's Contemporary Catechism Volume 1. Himalayan Academy Publications. p. 780.  
  13. ^ Jha, Makhan (1997). Anthropology of ancient Hindu kingdoms: a study in civilizational perspective. M.D. Publications. p. 95.  
  14. ^ ., Mahāvīra (2006). Religion & culture of the Jains. Bhartiya Jnanpith.  

External links

  • On Guru Purnima by About.com
The Hindu spiritual Gurus are revered on this day by a remembering their life and teachings.

A sanyasi performing Vyasa puja traditionally held on Guru Purnima day, as a part of Chaturmas rituals

Buddhists observe on this day uposatha i.e. to observe eight precepts. Vipassana meditators practice meditation on this day under the guidance of their teachers. Rainy season i.e. varsha vassa also starts with this day. During the rainy season lasting for three lunar months from July to October. During this time Buddhist monks remain in a single place, generally in their temples. In some monasteries, monks dedicate the Vassa to intensive meditation. During Vassa, many Buddhist lay people reinvigorate their spiritual training and adopt more ascetic practices, such as giving up meat, alcohol, or smoking.

Observances by Buddhists and Hindus

The Buddha went from Bodhgaya to Sarnath about 5 weeks after his enlightenment. Before Gautama (the Buddha-to-be) attained enlightenment, he gave up his austere penances and his friends, the Pañcavaggiya monks, left him and went to Isipatana (Sarnath). After attaining Enlightenment the Buddha, leaving Uruvela, travelled to the Isipatana to join and teach them. He went to them because, using his spiritual powers, he had seen that his five former companions would be able to understand Dharma quickly. While travelling to Sarnath, Gautama Buddha had to cross the Ganges. When King Bimbisara heard of this, he abolished the toll for ascetics. When Gautama Buddha found his five former companions, he taught them, they understood and as a result they also became enlightened. At that time the Sangha, the community of the enlightened ones, was founded. The sermon Buddha gave to the five monks was his first sermon, called the Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta. It was given on the full-moon day of Asadha. Buddha subsequently also spent his first rainy season i.e. Varsha vassa at Sarnath at the Mulagandhakuti. The Sangha had grown to 60 in number (after Yasa and his friends had become monks), and Buddha sent them out in all directions to travel alone and teach the Dharma. All 60 monks were Arahants.

Buddhist history

In yogic lore, it is said that Guru Purnima was the day that saw the birth of the Adi Guru, or the first Guru. The story goes that over 15,000 years ago, a yogi[9] appeared in the upper regions of the Himalayas. Nobody knew what his origins were. But his presence was extraordinary, and people gathered. However, he exhibited no signs of life, but for the occasional tears of ecstasy that rolled down his face. People began to drift away, but seven men stayed on. When he opened his eyes, they pleaded with him, wanting to experience whatever was happening to him. He dismissed them, but they persevered. Finally, he gave them a simple preparatory step and closed his eyes again. The seven men began to prepare. Days rolled into weeks, weeks into months, months into years, but the yogi’s attention did not fall upon them again.
After 84 years of sadhana, on the summer solstice that marks the advent of Dakshinayana, the earth’s southern run, the yogi looked at them again. They had become shining receptacles, wonderfully receptive. He could not ignore them anymore. On the very next full moon day, the yogi turned south and sat as a guru to these seven men. The Adiyogi (the first yogi) thus became the Adi Guru. Adiyogi expounded these mechanics of life for many years. The seven disciples became celebrated as the Saptarishis and took this knowledge across the world.
Guru Purnima is held sacred in the yogic tradition because the Adiyogi opened up the possibility for a human being to evolve consciously. The seven different aspects of yoga that were put in these seven individuals became the foundation for the seven basic forms of yoga, something that has still endured.

Yogic lore

This was the day, when Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa – author of the Mahabharata – was born to sage Parashara and a fisherman's daughter Satyavati, thus this day is also celebrated as Vyasa Purnima.[5]Veda Vyasa, did yeoman service to the cause of Vedic studies by gathering all the Vedic hymns extant during his times, dividing them into four parts based on their use in the sacrificial rites, and teaching them to his four chief disciples – Paila, Vaisampayana, Jaimini and Sumantu. It was this dividing and editing that earned him the honorific "Vyasa" (vyas = to edit, to divide). "He divided the Veda into four, namely Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharva. The histories and the Puranas are said to be the fifth Veda."

Hindu legend

, celebrate this holy festival around the world. Guru shishya parampara and Indian classical dance, which also follow the Indian classical music Students of [8], a four-month period during the rainy season, when they choose seclusion and stay at one chosen place; some also give discourses to the local public.Chaturmas), observe this day by offering puja to their guru, during the sanyasis and wandering monks (ascetics Hindu [7], where it is an expression of gratitude toward the teacher by his/her disciple.Hinduism The festival is common to all spiritual traditions in [6][5][4]

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