In search of a Guru

One day King Shivaji was told by a wise friend, “Without a Guru, there can be no salvation. You need a Guru.”

Outwardly, King Shivaji was performing his duties as sovereign extremely well, in spite of the fact that his life was full of responsibilities. But inwardly he felt that something was missing. He used to visit temples quite often and he was religious in the strict sense of the term. But without a spiritual guide, he was unable to enter into deep prayer and meditation. So he began to search for a Guru.

Shivaji came to learn of a particular saint. Three times he went to see the saint, only to find that the saint was not available. The saint was evading him. Finally, Shivaji asked one of the saint’s devotees where her Master actually was. She told Shivaji to go to a certain village. Shivaji went there and found the saint sitting under a tree with a few of his disciples. After the saint had finished singing devotional songs, Shivaji humbly approached him and begged to be accepted as his disciple.

The saint said, “I accept you as my disciple.”

Then Shivaji begged the saint to come and live at his palace, but the saint said, “Oh no, I cannot come to your palace. You are a king. Your duty is to protect your subjects. My duty is to pray and worship. I shall stay here. You can come and visit me from time to time.”

In obedience to his Master’s will, King Shivaji agreed to return to his palace and resume his duties. He was so happy that at last he had found his spiritual Master. The name of this saint was Ramdas and the year was 1672 AD.

Sri Chinmoy, Shivaji, Agni Press, 1997