Below is another interesting message from Osho Robbins. He relates how he saw the current Radha Soami Satsang Beas guru behaving in a way that is far from traditional.
Here's my take on this: It is only when we put gurus up on an undeserved pedestal, viewing them as other-worldly beings rather than ordinary humans, that behavior like Robbins describes appears unusual.
For many years I was a devotee of Gurinder Singh's predecessor, Charan Singh. People would be amazed at Charan Singh doing everyday things, like reading a newspaper. Likewise, in the early days of Gurinder Singh's realm, people would email messages saying things like "I saw the guru wearing blue jeans!," or "The guru was kicking a soccer ball around!"
Well, so what? People read newspapers, wear blue jeans, and kick soccer balls.
I saw Gurinder Singh flying first class, looking utterly ordinary. It's nice to know that he's now acting even more un-guru'ly. I wouldn't be surprised if one day he gave up his guru position. After all, he has become hugely rich by Indian standards (really, by any standards).
Could be one reason Gurinder Singh has loosened up. Super wealthy people can afford to have a "who cares?" attitude. This is what Osho Robbins emailed me:
Gurinder Singh Dhillon breaks the ‘Satguru’ mold.
Traditional sant mat teachings elevate the guru to a status equivalent to God himself. In fact the teachings even say the guru is greater than God.
So now imagine the scene at Haynes Park, UK. It’s Bank holiday Monday and it’s a ‘seva day’ which means only the ardent followers are present. So Gurinder can let down his guard and relax. And that is exactly what he does.
It’s around 5pm and the sevadars have gathered in the canteen and are waiting hopefully for the guru to show up. The guru arrives and sits on his elevated chair for all to have darshan. Now the fun begins. Members of the sangat sing songs and the guru sings along (but he has no microphone) and he makes funny gestures from time to time. He taps his feet to the tune of some of the songs. He moves his head like a drunkard. Actually he’s having good fun.
The songs continue: Love songs, Hindi songs, funny songs and the occasional shabd. Also featured was the Beatles song “with a little help from my friends.”
I watched the faces of shocked followers as Gurinder Singh sat there making a fool of himself, clearly enjoying the process. And not really caring what anyone else thinks. Talk about pushing their boundaries.
This continues for 3.5 hours. As for me – I’m done after 2.5 hours – I can’t sit very comfortably for that long on the floor – so I leave and take a walk in the deserted Haynes Park grounds.
“What the heck is going on here?” is what the majority of the sangat must be thinking.
According to traditional sant mat teachings a satguru would not behave in this manner. The teachings have all kinds of standards for a master to live up to. And they state that his life is exemplary and beyond question because he is GIHF. So you wouldn’t expect a Satguru to be interested in love songs. You certainly would not expect him to spend 3.5 hours getting the sangat to sing love songs while he sings along with them.
Now before I go any further – let me make it clear that I am not saying it is a ‘bad’ thing. In fact I am rather impressed with him, because he is consciously dropping the image of being the ‘divine satguru’ and instead being just plain Gurinder Singh and he is quite happy making a fool of himself.
Why is he doing all this? Well my opinion is that he is shaking people out of their comfort zones. He always tells people to laugh and relax and have fun. So now he is demonstrating. By making a fool of himself he is opening the way for them to do the same and not be so stuck up.
After all – he is the guru and his image is the most important and he’s not at all bothered about it. I’m impressed with his laid back attitude. It would be a very different path if the followers also became just as laid back.
Just imagine the incident I reported last time about the sevadar asking me to stand on the other side of the walkway. It could just not happen – instead he would say: “Stand where you like – just so long as you keep to the primary directive – have FUN!”