24 January 2016
Sri Sivabala Yogi’s teaching revealed in the Guru Upanishad is an exhaustive guide for aspirants of various grades and temperaments, who are curious to know the Truth. It contains divine knowledge of the highest quality, which is of special value for those seekers who want to pursue a spiritual quest seriously. Guru Upanishad sets out in great detail various aspects of the metaphysical nature of Reality and, more importantly, the means to attain It through control of mind achieved by personal effort and divine grace. A spiritual enquiry seeks knowledge that is not only abstruse but its esoteric nature is difficult for intellectual comprehension without purifying the mind through practice (sadhana) of a guru’s instruction. Although Guru Upanishad is written in simple language, yet, it is not possible for an average reader with no more than rudimentary scriptural knowledge to appreciate the subtle nuances of its teaching without practical spiritual experience. The scope of Guru Upanishad is so vast that even advanced disciples do not need its complete knowledge to progress spiritually. It is primarily intended for highly evolved souls, who are close associates of the Guru, to further his mission in the future. Some aspirants, except the very earnest ones, may, as a consequence, be put off by the elaborate nature of the Guru’s instruction given in that work.
To spread the divine word to a larger audience, not too familiar with spiritual matters but are keen to learn its basic knowledge, Sri Sivabala Yogi has simplified the teaching given in the Guru Upanishad for use by beginners. This book is not a chapter wise condensation of the original work but comprises its essence for easier assimilation. And, yet, its sweep is broad enough to embrace all that a beginner needs to know. It has a twin purpose; one, to serve as guidebook for a deeper study of the Guru Upanishad; two, encourage people interested in pursuing a spiritual path to begin practice without which bookish knowledge is of little avail. Chapter 1 from Guru Upanishad has been reproduced in full in the present work to give a broad perspective of the teaching. Similarly, Chapter 34 has been included to familiarise readers with Sri Sivabala Yogi’s life story and divine mission. A word of caution to those readers who are not familiar with the theoretical basis of any spiritual quest discussed in Chapter 2. It is essential to have detailed knowledge of the subjects covered there. A broad and rudimentary understanding of nature of Reality, maya, mind and creation is enough to begin meditation(or any other path). It helps an intelligent person to derive beneficial effects from practice.
This treatise follows the question and answer technique of the Guru Upanishad. The Guru’s instruction, revealed in bhava samadhi, is given in the form of replies to questions asked by Guruprasad. The use of traditional words to convey certain ideas has been deliberately kept to the minimum to make instruction simple. They have been used only where their English equivalents are inadequate to convey their real sense or some very commonly used ones that are generally understood.