What is the Object of being devoted to a Master?
Why should we love the Master? It is done chiefly so that we may imbibe the nature and ideals of the Master. By loving the Master, his consciousness brings light within us and we forget everything about this mundane world.
We are naturally in a state of attachment to this world, whether it be our household, our children, our friends or others. A Master has a unique magnetic power by which we are attracted to him.
The purpose of our love for him is that our love may be detached from all other objects and centred around him. If a stream of water has nine outlets, and if it were allowed to flow through only one of the outlets – all the others being closed – its pressure would be so strong that the water would pour out in a flood, even if the opening is a tiny one.
When our love is detached from everything else and is attached only to the Guru, then we are free from all the evil ties and attachments of the world, and contact God.
By loving the Guru, the disciple assumes his very form.
If you have entered the palace of your Beloved, then you should catch hold of him with strong hands. In other words, you should sever your thoughts from everything else.
A devotee always remains absorbed in the love of his Guru, who is the manifestation of God. Persons given to rituals and ceremonies say their prayers a number of times daily, but a devotee remembers his Guru at all times, with every breath of his life. He will never forget his Guru – who is the manifestation of God – and always remembers with his mind and with his body the sweet recollections of his Guru’s actions. A Guru is the giver of spiritual life to his disciples, and sustains everybody.
Devotion to the Guru is in fact devotion to the True Lord. If one were to call it worship of man, then such man-worship was founded by God Himself. He commanded the angels to bow down before man when He created him. A Master is a human being, but he is a complete person, and without him a disciple can have no success in this life or hereafter.
The currents of love emanating from the heart of a devotee strike against the heart of the Master, draw power from it, and return to the heart of the disciple with a double force. In this manner the spiritual powers of the Master enter the heart of the disciple and it appears to him that the Master has become one with him, and he himself feels one with the Master. Once the disciple is in communion with the Guru, all the gates of bliss and happiness are open to him.
Such a devotee need not do anything else, because the Master enters his mind with all his powers. The disciple then gets a feeling of Guru in disciple and disciple in Guru, so much so that the disciple becomes Guruman or Guru plus man. Because a Guru is God incarnated as man, the disciple also becomes a Godman.
These great children of Light, who manifest the Light, who themselves are Light, they being worshipped, become one, as it were, with us and we become one with them.
Devotion is an essential and most important part of the way of Spirituality. We should detach ourselves from all worldly ties and go in search of a Guru. By his Grace only can we be given the gift of Shabd. We should devote ourselves to him.
Oh my Master! Thou who art the Lord of Lords, bestow on me the gift of devotion! I do not want anything except to be in your service day in and day out.
All Scriptures, Sages, Saints and Mahatmas have laid great emphasis on devotion to a Master, because without devotion all our spiritual practices take us only half-way and do not bring proper results.