Prem Rawat's Teachings about Embodiment - In His Own Words
Prem Rawat, or Maharaji ("the Ultimate Ruler") as he insists on being called, or Guru Maharaj Ji as he called himself until the 1980's, did not claim he was God, the infinite, formless Creator and energy sustaining the universe. He said he was incarnation or manifestation of God in a human body who "come(s) in(to) th(e/is) world", which have identical meanings, many times. He sometimes also used the word 'embodiment' to describe the relationship between himself and God. 'Embodiment' is a word that is difficult to use in a sentence about yourself but it was often used by his followers, including his wife, to describe him. He used the phrases "in this body" or "in a body" far more often. Among the synonyms he called himself are the Master, the Savio(u)r, Guru Maharaj Ji, the Perfect Master, the Satguru, the Lord, the Living Master, the Master who come(s) in(to) the world.
During the Celebration of His Birthday, December 11 1971, Prem Nagar Ashram, Hardwar
All the saints of India, even Jesus Christ, even Mohammed, have emphasized love because love is the greatest cord in the world that can unite you and the Lord, Who is perfect, perfect for all. And he who goes to Him and asks Him for His love, He never hesitates to give this love to him. Maybe he is the lowest person in the world; maybe he is the highest person in the world. The Lord is the embodiment of love and you must realize Him. Not only realize Him, but be one with Him; because He can create you as many times as you like.
And my guru also taught me this first of all, this thread of love, and then I was able to realize this embodiment of love. He is white, but if you will wear blue glasses, you won't be able to see Him. In this world, everywhere there is darkness. White glasses are necessary for that white, bright, shining light. And if you go to Him, He says, "Ask and it shall be given; knock and it shal I be opened unto you." So, if you have asked for knowledge, very good. Otherwise, if you have known the knowledge, go ahead and meditate.
Reflections On An Indian Sunrise, © Divine Light Mission 1972, Price 50 cents
Swiss Alps Festival, August 26, 1972
One thing you must understand is who is Guru, and who is God? And what is the difference? God is the name of power, God is a sort of noun. Guru is a complete adjective. It indicates a movement from 'gu', darkness, to 'ru', light, and so this word is performing a very great action. And this word 'guru' is an adjective, and a verb too, because it shows us that some work is being done. So who is Guru? When God Himself incarnates in this body, He is called Guru, because only God is the power who can bring us from darkness and put us into light.
Divine Light magazine Volume 2, Number 4, December, 1972
Chicago Illinois, August 7 1973
this Knowledge has to be revealed by the Perfect Master which is a source who can reveal us this Knowledge. We have to go to a source and that's why it is very necessary that we go to a Master. When we want to drive a car, now car is something that finally somebody made it and the first guy who ever made a car he drove it. Now he didn't have a Master to drive the car but finally when other people had to learn they had to go to Master. In the same way when the Perfect Master comes in this body he is enlightened but if other people want to be enlightened they can't be like Perfect Master because they are not the one, they are created. There is a great difference between a creator and created like there is a great difference between the chair and a maker of a chair. In the same way there is a great difference between God who created the world and the creation itself which we are. God creation and if we try to compete with the creator we can never do that because creator is perfect and we are not perfect. Creator is infinite and we are not infinite, we are finite. We have a beginning and we have a end but the infinite one who is God doesn't have a beginning and doesn't have a end to it. That's the constant primordial vibration sustaining the whole world and to realize it is realizing Knowledge, is the Knowledge.
PMT #008: The Practical Solution Studio Rehearsal
Denver, Colorado, October 17, 1976
Now, they asked their own questions and they answered their own questions. They didn't wait for Guru Maharaj Ji to handle it. They didn't just have faith in Guru Maharaj Ji. But you see, this is where it's really, really important. And that is the reason why Guru Maharaj Ji comes in a body. There can be this enormous, spiritual power - well, there is - and no physical body, and it's just like it was before. There was no Guru Maharaj Ji, and everybody was just doing whatever they wanted to do. Everybody was into their own trip. This is what happens time after time when we lose our perspective, when we lose that fundamental thing. … But you have to understand what this is all about. You know? This is about peace. Premies say, "Well, my experience isn't working out." Or, "There is an even greater experience than this experience." The thing is, there is a reason why Guru Maharaj Ji is in this body, and if you really have faith in Guru Maharaj Ji, then Guru Maharaj Ji will let you know, will let you understand what is really to happen. He has done it. Not just one time, but time, after time, after time, after time.
Divine Times - November 1976 Volume 5, Number 10
An Interview with Guru Maharaj Ji, June 1979, Miami Magazine
Q: Most people think of a Guru as someone who has renounced all worldly things and sits on top of a mountain. What does "Guru" actually mean?
A: The word "Guru" is a very simple word and has a very simple meaning. It derives from Sanskrit and means, 'One who can take us from the darkness and bring us to the light.' 'Gu' meaning darkness; 'Ru' meaning light. The word 'Guru' is in some circumstances mis-used. Guru is that embodiment, that human being who can take us from darkness, bring us to light, show us the perfection within, show us the experience of God within, and bring us the inner contentment.
The Golden Age, July 1979, Number 54 and Guru Maharaj Ji Answers Questions, 1979 and The Golden Age Special Introductory Issue Number 1, February 1980
The Connection video, 1998
It's a total package. Physically there is a Master so you can connect and internally there is Knowledge so you can connect on both levels. Make the connection."
The Connection video, 1998
It is unusual to talk about one's own embodiment and Prem Rawat was no different to others in this respect. However, his devotees, the media and academics of religion used the concept more freely:
In any case Hans Maharaj Ji claimed a Sant Mat succession which he passed to Maharaj Ji. Maharaj Ji, as do many of the other Sant Mat leaders, claims to be a Perfect Master, an embodiment of God on earth, a fitting object of worship and veneration. - J. Gordon Melton (ed), Encyclopedic Handbook of Cults in America, 1986
This article intends to explore the nature of change and continuity involved in the various organizational structures that have been developed to promote the teaching of Prem Rawat (a.k.a. Maharaji), and to suggest that the organizational adaptations that have taken place, and continue to develop, are not as influenced by internal and external crises as by the dynamics of the message itself embodied in the messenger. - R. Geaves, From Divine Light Mission to Élan Vital and Beyond: An Exploration of Change and Adaptation, Nova Religio, Mar 2004
Theologically, Satguru exemplifies the Hindu concept of the Absolute as both with and without form. As living human master Satguru does not merely represent the Absolute Lord, but Satguru is that Lord's form, or embodiment, or incarnation: (11) simultaneously, even as he sits before the devotees in the form of a living master, Satguru is also "non-dual, un-namable, and formless" (Lane, 1981:12). To Kabir, this Lord's "form is love" and "all light" [Tagore, 1977:1 13,75). Radhasoami means "Absolute Lord," whose form " … is without limits and beyond description. To what could I compare it? It is beyond all measure." (Singh, 1976:2:35-6, cited in Babb, 1981:390). Guru Maharaj Ji sometimes described this "Lord" or "God" as impersonal energy, at other times as the creator. - DuPertuis, L., How people recognize charisma: the case of Darshan in Radhasoami and Divine Light Mission, 1986
A History of Hans Jayanti
If God is omnipresent, He cannot leave. The Perfect Master is His embodiment; he also cannot leave. Hans Jayanti is a celebration of the soul. It is a festival of worship for that spirit which is continuous upon the earth, that energy which is bound by neither birth nor death, the life force of the perfect Master. It is Shri Hans Ji Maharaj (Shri Maharaj Ji) in whose honor the Hans Jayanti Festival is held. Late in 1966. Shri Maharaj Ji left his mortal body, having dedicated every breath to spreading the Knowledge of God. The time had come for that perfect energy to manifest in full power and glory. It chose the body of an eight-year-old boy, Balyogeshwar Shri Sant Ji Maharaj, son of Shri Maharaj Ji. The new Perfect Master did not waste any time.
And It Is Divine, Millenium Edition, November 1973
Satgurudev Shri Hans Ji Maharaj Originally Published by Divine Light Mission, B-19/3, Shakti Nagar, Delhi 7, India - 1970, 8th November, 1970
He was a fearless, realised saint who followed the path of all great seers, shunning traditions, superstitions and rituals. He emphasised the worship of the living Guru. … But the relation of the Guru and the disciple transcends human relations, and are based on eternal bond of the jiva and God. Every individual soul is destined to achieve salvation through the grace of a living Guru. … Knowledge of the soul cannot be attained simply by reading the holy books. It is only a living spark that can give us light. The truth can only be imparted to us from the living spiritual master. … Guru and God are one and the same entity. One is given form while the other is formless. "I and my father are one." (John, 10; 30) Thus, the knowledge of the self can be attained only at the feet of a living spiritual master. … The Divine Light has been variously named by different spiritual masters. … It is possible for every man to experience this Divine Light through the grace of the living master. … The Word can only be known at the feet of a living Spiritual Master. It is only a burning lamp that can kindle other lamps. Only he who knows the Word and is fully God realised can be called a Spiritual Master. … The living spiritual master is Balyogeshwar Param Hans Satgurudev Shri Sant Ji Maharaj. … It is a spiritual law that there can be no divine knowledge without the grace of the living Satguru. … The Satguru is the living embodiment of grace, and the very ocean of mercy.
Satgurudev Shri Hans Ji Maharaj
Who Is Guru Maharaj Ji?, People, testimony of Joan Apter
This is a testimony. But really, without exaggerating, it is a scripture, for I have been graced and the Living Lord has found me, and so my experiences with Guru Maharaj ji are the eternal experiences written by every soul in the past and will be written by every soul in the future who meets the embodiment of truth, pure consciousness, and bliss, receives his Knowledge, and lives under his universal shelter.
Who Is Guru Maharaj Ji?, People, testimony of Joan Apter
Durga Ji (Prem Rawat's wife), Holi Festival, Miami Beach, Florida, Sunday, 9 April, 1978
Because I can't even say how kind Maharaj Ji is. I experience that kindness and it just keeps going. I mean, it's boundless. Guru Maharaj Ji is the embodiment of kindness, of mercy. We have no idea what kindness and mercy are, really. But I know that Guru Maharaj Ji is that embodiment of it, just as he is the embodiment of Love.
And this is just what we have to realise: like Maharaj Ji said, going beyond just knowing it, but actually realising it, seeing the real reality of this life, and just knowing that that Giver and that Sustainer of our life is the embodiment of mercy, is the embodiment of kindness, is the embodiment of Love, is the embodiment of Grace, is the embodiment of Truth, is Guru Maharaj Ji. Our Father. Our Lord.
Divine Times, May/June 1979, Volume 8, Number 3
The supreme Lord knows human weaknesses, therefore He manifests Himself in the form of Satguru to reveal the mystery of His own Divinity and to give to His devotees the opportunity of performing service at His Holy Lotus Feet. Those who have been blessed with the Divine presence of Satguru will undoubtedly be saved and never be abandoned to the clutches of birth and death. Such devotees are always in peace and attain the state of immortal bliss.
Let us beg Him sincerely to grant us His devotion and love and nothing else. Really blessed are those devotees who have bathed in the intense love and the unalloyed devotion of the Lotus Feet of Shri Guru Maharaj Ji, who is the highest manifestation of God and the embodiment of truth, love and compassion.
Divine Light, Volume 1, Number 5, February 1972
Satsang of Loring Baker, Initiator
What is Guru Maharaj Ji? How does one speak of Guru Maharaj Ji? I don't even know. With words one can't even begin. But I can tell you what I know for sure. Guru Maharaj Ji is the embodiment of that love that is within us. He is the giver of love. He knows us in the deepest way that we can be known. He loves and sees us in a way that we could never love or see ourselves or one another. He is pure in love, pure in faith. He is the only one who has unshakable faith in the power of love. He sees what we truly are and can bring us to be what we truly are. He is our Father, here to bring us to our true home.
Divine Times, May/June 1979, Volume 8, Number 3
Mahatma Sampuranand, head Raj Vidya Kender and eminence grise
On the thirteenth day after Shri Maharaj Ji's death, by tradition, people from all over India were expected to come to pay their final respects and to discover who was going to be the next master. On 30 July, the night before this event, I decided that the first thing I would do the next morning would be to accept Sant Ji as my master. So I arranged for a garland and a chair and whatever else was required to be brought to a small room. But when the next day came, Sant Ji and I started playing together as usual. I began having so much fun that I forgot about the preparations I had made the night before. Soon our play took us into that very room and much to my surprise he asked me what was in the cabinet where I had put the garland. Then and there, all alone with him, I garlanded him and accepted him as my master. Meanwhile, about 12,000 people were sitting outside on the event grounds. Many were crying over the passing of Shri Maharaj Ji. Once or twice Sant Ji would go to the stage and speak to console them. He asked them why they were crying and told them that what they had really loved in Shri Maharaj Ji would never die. Everyone felt uplifted and there was an acceptance of what seemed obvious, that Sant Ji was embodying that same thing that they had been loving and respecting.
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