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I have had privilege of meeting at least three enlightened masters in my life (until now), mentors and coaches. Some of the mentors may be enlightened masters and I am not aware about those. However, rest three I am sure – Sai Kaka, Dada ji and Guruji. It is difficult to have very close day-to-day meeting with the enlightened masters. The mentors have a special place they guide, encourage, handhold, and challenge, I have been fortunate that I have a long list of mentors.

I received a wonderful story on whatsapp “Importance of Guru” or mentor or coach in life.  Without much ado here is this wonderful story on Guru Poornima.

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Once upon a time, a cow went out to graze in the jungle. Suddenly, she noticed a lion racing towards her. She turned and fled, fearing that at any moment the lion would sink his claws into her. The cow desperately looked for someplace to escape and at last, saw a shallow pond. Barely evading the lion’s reach, she jumped into the pond, and in the heat of the chase, the lion blindly leaped after her.

Sai KakaTo the surprise of them both, the pond was extremely shallow yet filled with deep recesses of mud. After toppling over each other, the cow and the lion found themselves a short distance apart, stuck in the mud up to their necks. Both had their heads above water but were unable to free themselves no matter how much they writhDada Gavanded.

The lion repeatedly snarled at the cow and roared, “I am going to enjoy the sound of crunching your bones between my teeth!”

He thrashed about in fury but soon became fretful as he found no prospect of escape.

The cow thoughtfully laughed as the lion struggled to free himself and asked him, “Do you have a master?”

The lion disdainfully replied, “I am the king of the jungle. Why do you ask me if I have a master? I myself am the master!”

The cow said, “You may be the king of the jungle, but here all your power has failed to save your life.”

“And what about you?” Retorted the lion. “You are going to die here in this mud too!”’

The cow smiled mildly and said, “No, I am not.”

“If even I, the king of the jungle cannot free myself from this mud”, snapped the lion, “Then how can you, an ordinary cow?”

The cow gently replied, “I cannot free myself from this mud, but my master can. When the sun sets and he finds me absent at home, he will come looking for me. Once he finds me, he will raise me up and escort me home sweet home.”

The lion fell silent and coldly glared at the cow.

Soon enough, the sunset and the cow’s master arrived. He immediately recognized the plight she was in and lifted her to safety. As they walked home, the cow and the master both felt renewed gratitude for one another and pitied the lion they both would have been happy to save if only the lion had allowed them.

The cow represents a surrendered heart, the lion represents an egoistic mind, and the master represents the Guru. The mud represents the world, and the chase represents the struggle for existence therein.

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Its good to be independent and not rely on anyone. But don’t take it to an extreme, you always need a partner/coach/mentor who will be always on the lookout for you.

Having them does not mean you are weak, it’s just that you can be stronger with their help.