Shiva Sutra 2.6 – The Real Guru


Achieving God consciousness is the goal and in this sutra we are told that the guru is the means. Sadly in the west, we have seen a parade of false gurus. Swami Lakshmanjoo says that the real guru is one who can reveal to you “the reality of God consciousness” - not one who asks for money or labor.

The real masters are those who have experienced and Become the Oneness, that Immutable Imperishable Absolute Supreme Truth. The guru or master serves as a reservoir of truth that will carry the disciple “across the ocean of all doubts [Spanda Karika 4.1].”

Guru simply means teacher. If it were not for the dedicated men and women who spend their lives studying and teaching the ancient wisdom, we would have no access to such knowledge. These individuals deserve our respect. Surely it is easy to understand that in an ashram, where many people are living and eating together, there must be order and rules as there are in any institution.

In the Malinivijaya Tantra text there is a teaching interpreted by some to mean, “the master is not a worldly being. For them, the master is, in the real sense, the supreme energy of Lord Shiva. [SLJ]” This energy of Shiva is the ubiquitous Oneness. Perhaps our teachers are waiting patiently eternal within us all - and if we are aware, they are simultaneously everywhere.


“It is your own business to have it.”

In Swami Laskhmanjoo’s recorded teachings, he often says that certain experiences or states of consciousness will come to the aspirant by the grace of the guru. However in the DVDs of Abhinavagupta’s commentaries on the Bhagavad Gita recorded in 1990, the year before his death, this master of Kashmir Shavism revealed something deeper.

In the context of Chapter IV.34, in which Krishna tells Arjuna that by respect and humble submission, by enquiry and service, the ones who Know will teach you. Abhinavagupta interprets these ‘knowing ones’ as your own sense organs, meaning the mechanics of consciousness, your discriminating intellect (buddhi) and the senses within you that receive and collect the enlightening data that will lead to your Liberation (moksha).

Ultimately you are your own master. Swami Lakshmanjoo reasons this out simply: Krishna is the greatest master, yet he is directing Arjuna to go to a master – when standing right before Arjuna is the ultimate master, Lord Krishna, who speaks as the God within us.

As Swami Lakshmanjoo says, “It is just a joke! Master means your own consciousness. You have to insert your all-force in your own consciousness. Then you’ll find it out. Don’t try to catch me. I have nothing to do with this. It is your own business to have it.”

Realizing our real nature as God consciousness is achieved by our own efforts. We lift ourselves up out of delusion by our Self, the God-within [Bhagavad Gita VI.5]. We cannot wait passively for some magic touch or look that will carry us into our goal. We are responsible for our own enlightenment - and with great courage and dedication, we must take up this task of inserting our all-force into our own consciousness.


No one has ‘done’ this deluded state to us. We are self-deluded. The Oneness has taken on the appearance of differentiation as us, in order to play this divine drama of concealing and revealing Itself to Itself. “This whole universe has come into existence just to carry you to God consciousness [SLJ].”

We are lost in our own self-created illusions that we enjoy – until one day we see that all these wretched pleasures quickly evaporate. External world pleasures are not lasting and are always followed by pain, disappointment and disinterest. We become bored with the sour adventure of repeated deaths and births [samsara] and begin to look within. “To be samsarin means being deluded by one’s own powers because of ignorance of that [Pratyabhijnahrdayam, Sutra 12].”

We created all this temporal illusion. We are the architects of our own holographic entrapment. Like spiders, we spin our own webs. So it simply makes sense that in the final analysis, it is completely up to us to release our consciousness from our clever self-imposed snare and wake up!

There may be many teachers both good and bad on the way Home. However my view is that if anyone but the God-within us could give us our final enlightenment, then we would be indebted to them for all eternity. I do not believe God would consider that condition of debt as a state of real liberation. We would simple be in yet another web.


Unlike so many Indian gurus, Swami Lakshmanjoo remained in Kashmir quietly teaching the ones who came to him. He wore simple clothes, did not have long flowing hair and beard, and was not seated on a golden throne. My feeling is that he taught only those who had the capacity to learn, meaning the ones who had the ears to hear.

I was not fortunate enough to have met Swami Lakshmanjoo, but I have learned an avalanche of wisdom from listening to his voice, the nectar sounds captured by the heroic diligence of John and Denise Hughes.

Do learn from everyone. Knowledge (jnana yoga) is imperative and your spiritual experiences will only remain with you when you understand what they mean in terms of their value relative to your progress. Yet, in the end this business of Liberation and reaching God consciousness is solely up to you, as it should be.



SPANDA-KARIKAS, The Divine Creative Pulsation, translated into English by Jaideva Singh; Motilal Banarsidass Publishers, Delhi, 1980. 2005.

Bhagavad Gita, In the Light of Kashmir Shaivism, Chapters 1-6, revealed by Swami Lakshmanjoo, edited by John Hughes; Universal Shaiva Fellowship, 2008.

Pratyabhijnahridayam, The Secret of Self-Recognition, translated by Jaideva Singh, Sanskrit Text with English Translation Notes and Introduction; Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Private Ltd. Delhi, 1963, 2003.



Swami Lakshmanjoo mentions Krishnamurti in this matter of finding out for yourself and being your own master. So I have included an interesting link regarding Krishnamurti’s views on gurus: