There are two questions I have been asked tens of times. Recently, someone I have known for a reasonable time asked them. I replied. After doing so, I thought I should share it with others too. In future, I can just point them to this link saving me time.

I am paraphrasing the questions for you:

1. I worship a certain deity. If I worship another form or explore other practices, will that upset my deity?
2. Can guru be perfect? Or can anyone be perfect for that matter? Only the Supreme is perfect.

My thoughts; as follows:

Worshiping other forms.

The same divine dwells in all. Krishna says to Arjuna:

समोऽहं सर्व भूतेषु न मे द्वेष्योऽस्ति न प्रिय |
Samō̕haṁ sarva bhūtēṣu na mē dvēṣyō̕sti na priya. (Bhagavad Gita. 9.29)

Thus: I am impartial and homes equally in all and I am even with everyone. I have no personal favorites and I hate no one.
Your God is never going to feel bad if you decide to try different things. If He does, how can he be God! Do you think God is stuck in the dualities of pride-prejudice, good-bad, right-wrong? Duality is a trait of the unenlightened. Whatever helps you tread the path of truth and self-discovery, choose that fearlessly.

Exploring other avenues can give you a broader perspective, however, it comes at a price. Until there is self-discovery, going through many things dilutes one’s focus, energies and devotion; it happens naturally. Your God is a product of your belief, samskāra, conditioningand thoughts. If you have made Him into someone who is crossed, pleased or appeased based on what you do or do not, you may need to rethink perhaps. You are entitled to have a god of your choice in “your world”. It does not necessarily need to integrate in the framework of “the world”.

The Perfect One.

Everyone is as complete as anyone else just like each one is as imperfect as everyone else. If you believe that no one can be perfect or complete and that belief helps you become a better, stronger, happier person; you should stick to that belief till you know better.

My point of view is somewhat different on this one but if I give you my answer that will be conditioning you, however subtle, with my thinking. Ideally, the answer to this should be found and felt as part of your self-discovery over the course of your own spiritual journey.

त्रिविधा भवति श्रद्धा देहिनां सा स्वभावजा |
Trividhā bhavati śrad’dhā dēhināṁ sā svabhāvajā. (Bhagvad Gita 17.2)

Devotion is of three types Krishna says. Such devotion is formed based on one’s  samskāra both from this lifetime and past, he adds.

If there can be a perfect painting, a perfect piece of literary work, food that tastes perfect, their creators may well be perfect I suppose, at least so in their fields. If for anyone the first three can never be perfect, how can there ever be a perfect human being for that person! Perfection is subjective and relative as it is dependent on individual interpretation. Some examiners never hand out perfect score, many others, do so with ease.

Self realization is not about attaining perfection; it is about redefining it.

Peace.
Swami

 

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