How women should select and follow a guru safely as per the scriptures?
(Kindly note: This reply is to protect the innocent people from getting cheated. I request the genuine gurus and the bonafide gurus from authorized bonafied sampradhayas and other genuine gurus who are doing sincere service to the mankind not to take my reply offensive. My sincere respects to such respectable gurus and I am aware of the importance of a bonafide guru in spiritual development!)
ACTUAL QUESTION FROM A DEVOTEE (NAME HIDDEN):
Gud Morning Prabhu…Recently i come to know through newspapers that a so called spiritual personality (I have avoided his name since I don’t want to advertise for him) is accused and given —- years imprisonment..for spoiling his own followers and sadhvis…used the example of shree Krishna for spoiling girls in his Gufa. He used to tell sadhvis that Krishna is also God…he was having full right over the body of his gopis and he also had physical relations with them…if m doing the same with you..there is nothing wrong in it…u will be blessed with this act…Many People i have seen…always give this example of Shree Krishna to justify their act of having illegal relations with other women and girls ..thus they spoil the lives of females…so tell us..what reply should be given to such men…Such dirty mind people take the meaning of Krishna’s Rasleela in their own way…that’s why they don’t feel that they are doing wrong.they think..that if Krishna can do..why cant we..??
Such persons are not at all gurus. Such people live a princely life surrounded by hundreds of girls in a palace-like mutt(?).
The happenings pain me seriously.
Though I am associated with a popular sathsangha, I have always written in the media daringly that women should never be allowed to stay in the mutts, temples, hostels, etc.
Because, when the men and women use the same premises, there are chances for violations by a few of them.
This is like living life with both fire and cotton at the same time.
That is why, our scriptures have said that one should avoid the company of opposite gender while following devotion.
One may resolve to be pure in his life. Just resolution is not enough. He must make his atmosphere without the opportunity to violate the purity.
Because, at a point of time, he/ she may be forced to violate the purity norms and involve in unwanted violations.
Why should hundreds of beautiful girls stay along with the men in an ashram?
Why that so called guru mentioned by you should choose only the girls to serve him? Can’t the boys perform body massage properly?
Everything is a business.
Flesh game in the name of god.
For such males, spirituality gives an opportunity to get more and more girls to live with them all the time.
Anyone can fall down at any time unless he/she is careful in avoiding the company of opposite gender.
That is why, in SRI Sampradhaya initiated by Sri Ramanujacharya, women staying in ashrams/ mutts is completely prohibited.
There, the women should serve the devotee husband in home. She can visit the mutt along with her husband to offer respects to the Acharya. And, an acharya should have first led grahastha life and then take sanyasa after his age 55 entrusting his wife to his son.
This is the right system to be followed by all.
That is why, there is no such reports of violations in that sampradhaya.
Even in Gaudiya Vaishnavam and Sankaracharya’s advaita sampradhayas, women staying in mutts/ temples is prohibited. However, SRI Sampradhaya is the role model for hundreds of years in this matter of effectively keeping the women away from mutts that are the places for brahmacharis, grahastha male disciples and sanyasis alone to practice devotion.
Mutts/ ashrams are the places for brahmacharis, grahastha male disciples and sanyasis.
What is the need for women to stay in those premises? This is nonsense in the liberalized system followed by all.
That is why, scriptures say that the husband is the first guru for women and the husband should pass whatever they learn from their guru to the wife.
Moreover, when the husband gets liberated, the wives too get liberated.
If the mutts like to give space for women also, they should start a separate women wing headed by women sanyasins. No men should be allowed to stay in the ashram for women. But, training the women is not the business of mutts. So, women can be totally excluded in mutts.
Temples and mutts/ashrams are different.
Temples are the public places; Anyone can come and worship God there. Men and women from any community can visit the temples. However, no one can stay in temples. They have to be locked in the night time and vacated.
Whereas, the mutts are private places only for males to practice brahmacharya and sanyasa. Only the male disciples can stay there.
All the anarthas happening in the name of devotion/ god are the advent of kaliyuga.
The women too should refrain from willing to stay in the mutts. They should hesitate to enter into that place where only the males are dominated.
Many girls/ women do not see the difference between a temple and an ashram.
For example, Tirumala Tirupati temple is a temple. No men or women can stay in temple premises.
Whereas, the JEER (spiritual head) of the same Tirumala temple is staying in an ashram/ mutt. Only the brahmacharis and sanyasis stay there.
This is the difference between a temple and mutt.
Therefore, a girl/ woman should know the difference between a mutt and a temple.
They should avoid freely mingling in a mutt because it will disturb the practicing brahmacharis and sanyasis there.
The women should stay with her parents till their marriage and with husband after marriage. They should go to such spiritually important places with their parents or husband only.
And, the women can do service to Lord in temples. They should not serve their guru directly in mutts.
This is what violated in the case mentioned by you.
That person has used the entire mutt for leading a life full of pleasures.
He has brainwashed many of the girls staying in the mutt saying that he is Krishna and they are gopis and they will be purified if they have pleasures with him.
This is absolutely a purposeful violation.
There will be such personalities everywhere in this kaliyuga. Only the women should safeguard themselves.
Had they avoided staying in the premises of the ashram, they could have avoided such violations. They should know the rules and systems existing in the administration of mutts and temples.
Though an opportunity is given to them to stay in ashrams free of cost, they should say NO and stay with their parents. If they are orphans, they should stay in women hostels. Why should they prefer to stay in an ashram that is meant for males alone?
Vedic texts warn that the sanyasis/ acharyas should not own any properties or save money/ gold, etc. And, THERE IS A CLEAR INSTRUCTION THAT THEY SHOULD NOT START BIG ORGANISATIONS TO EXPAND THEIR ACTIVITIES. They should live in simple huts with only the basic requirements.
But, what happens now?
A few so called sanyasis lead a posh life with all comforts including women assistants. Other disciples are allowing such posh life with violations. If they leave the ashram if they find that their guru is not following the rules, that guru will think. But, the disciples too cooperate in the posh life of such bogus gurus and those disciples too lead posh lives.
HOW TO FIND OUT AN ASHRAM or A GURU IS VIOLATING THE RULES?
The following Eleven points can help you:
(1) If the guru is wearing golden ornaments, do not accept him as guru.
(2) If the guru is having women assistants, please avoid that guru.
(3) If young women are staying in his ashram, avoid that guru.
(4) If the guru does not involve in preaching works, but, is lazily enjoying the comforts, avoid that guru. If he is physically very old or ill but leads a simple life, he is ok.
(5) If a guru speaks vulgar language, avoid him.
(6) If a guru is saving money and materials for his future usage, avoid him.
(7) If a guru is involving only in ashram administrative works without concentrating in preaching, avoid him because he is an administrator, not a guru.
(8) If a guru speaks mundane things more than the speeches about God and the devotees, avoid that guru.
(9) If a guru creates partialities among his disciples/ devotees making politics, avoid that guru.
(10) If a guru does not represent an bonafiedd sampradhaya, does not preach based on the scriptures and his guru, but preaches his own fabricated thesis, do avoid that guru.
(11) If a guru says that he is God or similar to god or equal to god, do not hesitate to desert him.
WHOM SHOULD WE ACCEPT AS OUR GURU?
If a guru does not have all the above Eleven Violations and follow a simple life style, you can accept him. Also ensure that he is expert in the scriptures and is popular for sense control and being strict in mingling with women.
At the same time, being a scholar in scriptures alone is not a qualification for a good guru. Humbleness, simplicity and renounciation are the important requirements.
FOR WOMEN DEVOTEES:
Never stay in any ashram till you cross the age of 60, though they allow you to stay. Any ashram is filled with the brahmacharis and sanyasis. If you are staying there, it is the risk for you and those brahmacharis and sanyasis too may fall down in the hands of maya.
The women should be careful. Their family members are their protectors. No other person can be better than their own family members.
Hope this helps.