About Shree Guru Dattatreya :


Dattareya is the Grand Teacher or "Guru Principle" in the Universe. The Teachers is various planes are the manifestation of the one teaching principle who is referred to in the ancient Indian Wisdom as "DATTAREYA".

Dattatreya is said to be born to Anasuya, the Mother and Athri, the Father, Anasuya, in sanskti means not asuya- asuya means malice (jealousy) Anasuya the Mother is said to be the state of no malice and Athri the Father is said to be the pure consciousness.

Athreya, in sanskrit means "The son of the seven seers / Principles of creation." Athri in sanskrit means "Not Three." The one who came down from that which is not three is called Athreya.

Datta in sanskrit means "The one that is donated." Thus Dattatreya, the One who is not three is donated through the three into all the planes of creation to help mankind find the path back to truth. Dattatreya is the teacher, the Friend, the guide that leads to one's own source of existence. Duttatreya is an Eternal Principle.

The "Pure consaousness" details into the three aspects of consciousness as : Will, Knowledge and Activity or Itcha, Jnana and Kriya Sakthis. The three come together to lace creation with their three qualities which are Dynamism, Poise and Inertia or Rajas Satwa and Tamas. Their correspinding colours are : red, Blue and golden yellow. The lacing is done through those three qualities and colours along with the related sounds and numbers. As a result the creation happens with all its planes of existence.

The poised creation and the poised being are a result of the synthesis of the three qualities which is also called the state of quilibrium.

The planes of existence are made out of the disturbance of the state of equilibrium. The pathe of yoga helps mankind regain such a state of equilibrium, where there are no instincts of desire, anger, illusion, prite, prejudice, etc. This is called the yogic state in this state happiness is natural and need not be sought after, it is the natural, joyful state. It helps the yogi to ascend further in the realms of truth.

But, when desire or rajas emerges, it causes dis-equilibrium once the equilibrium is lost, it may take many lives and re-births to gain back that blissful state.

Dattatreya is considered to be the presiding diety for the pathe of yoga from ancient times. Those who aspire for truth are initiated by the grace of Dattatreya through a local Teacher. Who so ever is the Teacher it is the Principle of Shree Guru Dattatreya that enlightens the student theough the Teacher. Shree Guru Dattatreya however remains invisible, hidden and secretive. only to the accomplished Teacher, he Gives his figurative presence.

In Sanskrit, the foremost one, is called the Guru. In any group, the head of wisdom is the Guru. Shree Guru Dattatreya is the foremost one, the Guru in creation. Every spiritual group in India invokes Shree Guru Dattatreya when they utter the follwing invocation.

Guru Brahma, Gurur Vishnahu, Gurur Devo Maheshwaraha
Guru Sankshat Parabrahma Tasmai Sri Grurave Namaha
  The English Translation is :
The Teacher who is Brahma (the Intelligent Activity)
The Teacher who is Vishnu (the Knowledge Love Wisdom)
The Teacher who is Isvara / Shiva (will)
The Teacher who is Parabrahma, "The systhesis of the Three and the One who is beyond the Three"
To that Teacher, I offer my salutation,
Thus, the one Teacher (Guru) of the universe is invoked through every Teacher (Guru)

In Sanskrit, Guru also means "the one who causes recollection" the true Teacher - the Sat Guru has only one mission to accomplish - to recollect, to each one that gathers around him that he is a being of light, of pure consciousness, immortal and divine and nothing less than that.

The essential quality of a Teacher is compassion Dakshinya. He is compassionate towards all beings, never judgemental. A true Teacher never believes in punishing, for him every being is a being of Light, a Divine being and hence He cannot but be friendly and compassionate towards their ignorance.

The True Teacher cannot reject some and prefer others, He has no preferences. His Love and Enlightenment emanate from Him with equanimity like the rays of the sun or the magnetic currents. The receptive ones receive differently according to their fitness and ability.

Sometimes, disciples are not happy when co-disciples, whom they do not like, are also entertained by their Teacher. But the Teacher is beyond all partiality and treats everyone equally.

Shree Guru Dattatreya is thus the foremost one, the Guru who permeates the whole of creation as the teaching principle that guides all beings along the path of truth.

The Significance of the FIgurative Representation of Shree Guru Dattatreya :
Shree Guru Dattatreya is Figuratively represented as a Deity with Three Heads and Six Hands, holding Six different articles :
[1] a Conch (Shankh)
[2] a Wheel (Chakra)
[3] a Mace (Gadda)
[4] a Trident (Trishul)
[5] a Water Carrier (Kamandal)
[6] a Begging Bowl (Khappar)
He is acccompanied by a Cow and Four Dogs.
The Three Heads of Shree Guru Dattatreya represent the Three Dieties : Brahma, Vishnu & Mahesh (Shiva).
He is therefore creative like the Creator Brahma, Preserver as Vishnu and can also be the Destroyer like Mahesh (Shiva).
He is potent with all possibilities. That is how he is conceived by the seers of ancient times, as "All in One and One in All"
The Significance of the Six Symbols held by Shree Guru Dattatreya :
The Conch indicates the principle of expansion and contraction; every expansion requires consolidation and vice versa. On the path to truth there is the expansion of consciousness, which needs to be consolidated at each step. It is the Law of Alternation which works in the evolutionary and involutionary processes.
The Conch also stands for the sound Nada, the musical notes and all that relates to the sound. The Teacher introduces the student to the sound. He breaks the inertia of the student and recruits him into works of goodwill. He leads the student to that poise in which his inertia and activity find a balance. This enables the student to walk into the esoteric side of training.
The Wheel stands for Time and Time is presided over by the True Teacher. He intiates the student into the knowledge relating to time, so that the student skilfully adapts himself to the favourable and unfavourable periods of life without losing his poise and equilibrium.He learns to co-operate with time.
The Wheel held by Shree Guru Dattatreya is an assurance that he would lead his followers into timelessness and the consequent Bliss.
The Mace is symbolic of the instrument that subjugates pride. Self-pride needs to be sacrificed on the serviceto fellow beings and Shree Guru Dattatreya appropriately uses the Mace to put down the pride of those who follow the path of Truth. He bestows humility. simplicity and humbleness through His training. He never punishes the seekers as He is "The Compassionale One" He counters and neutralises the pride of his followers but, if they are crystallised in pride, He works with His Shiva quality, but with love and compassion so that the soul is uplifted.
The Mace also symbolises the inverted position of the cerebrospinal system, which is the abode of consciousness. If the Mace is held upright, it resembles the light of the Head, followed by the column of light of the spine.
Shree Guru Dattatreya enables the truth - seekers to reverse many inversions which they suffer from. He conducts seven reversions and inversionsto make themupright ordinary beings are upside down from the standpoint of knowledge. They suffer inversions and hence remain ignorant. They are illusioned by their ignorance. The Mace, held by Shree Guru Dattatreya gives the message that man is inverted and that he needs to reverse the inversions. The technique of reversing the inversions relates to the yoga philosophy and the yoga practice.
The Trident held by Shree Guru Dattatreya is symbolic of the triple energy held in an etheric form within the Brahmadanda. The Triple energies are referred to as Ida, Pingala and Sushumna. They are the left, the right and the central energy The left current causes the materialisation, the right current causes spiritualization and the central currents causes the balance between the two, enabling the existence of the being in a particular plane of existence.
I da stands for involutionary energy, pingala stands for evolutionary energy and sushumna stands for the yogic energy that balances at every level the spirit and the matter to be in existence in that level.
The one who is in the middle is the poised one, the equilibrated one, the fulfilled one who can experience the bliss in every state of awareness This is called synthesis. This synthesis is promised to be bestowed by Shree Guru Dattatreya. His holding the Trident is indicative of such a promise.
The Water Carrier of Shree Guru Dattatreya is in essence the life carrier. The Teacher should bestow life and longevity to the student so that he can fulfull himself in yoga during that incarnation. A true Teacher is also a True Healer and even a life giver Until the student gains mastery, He would like to help him with good health and longevity. The Teacher bestows three essential benedictions on the student : One is longevity, another is health and the third benediction is the path to Truth. He establishes the life force firmly in the student, introduces him to the word (Initiation) recruits him into acts of goodwill, purifies him in the mental, emotional and physical plane, neutralizes his past karma, stimulates the kundalini energy, thereby transforming his body tissues and causes the birth of the etheric body, which is capable of receiving and transmitting light. He further guides the student to realize himself as a being of light in the size of a thumb finger. The way the Teacher guides is incomprehensible by the student until the student is fully accomplished.
Shree Guru Dattatreya is thus the Mother - Father principle that developes the knowledge of the soul which leads to self - realization.
Shree Guru Dattatreya carries a begging bowl but He is not a beggar. To protect his followers He begs them to donate their limitations their impurities, their evil motives and substandard behaviours. It is for this reason that he extends the hand with the begging bowl towards eveyone who orients to him. He would like us to relieve ourselves from attachment, hate, desire, anger, pride, prejudice, jealousy and avariciousness. He reverses these ignorant aspects and leads us to bliss. The Begging Bowl is indicative of such sublime activity of the Real Teacher. In short, He symbolically drinks others impurities (Poison) and bestows nectar.
Dattatreya is accompanied by healthy white cow. The Cow is under the protection of Shree Guru Dattatreya. The Cow is considered sacred and is respected worshipped protected and well fed before one uses its milk. The cow is the giver of all fulfilment, joy, happiness and it follows Dattatreya.
In Indian mythology Shree Guru Dattatreya and Shree Krishna are the only ones shown as accompanied by a Cow, as both of them represent the one teaching principle in all the three planes of existence.
Shree Guru Dattatreya being three - headed is the Creator, Preserver and Destroyer and so is Shree Krishna. Shree Guru Dattatreya is the Master of Yoga in creation and Shree Krishna gave out the science of Yoga through the Bhagavad Gita. The Bhagavad Gita is the synthesis of Brahma Vidya, Yoga Vidya and the Upanishads.
All that which is mystically depicted as Shree Guru Dattatreya is in its full manifestation in flesh and blood as Shree Krishna.
Shree Guru Dattatreya as accompanied by four Dogs in his figurative symbol. These four Dogs represent :
The Four Vedas : Rig Veda, Sama Veda, Yagur Veda & Atharva Veda.
The Four Yugas : Kirta, Treta, Dwapara & Kali Yugas.
The Four States of the Word : Para (Begond), Pasyanti (Perception), Madhyama (Conception) & Vaikhari (Vocal).
The Four States of Existence : Existence, Awareness, Thought and Speech or Action.
To indicate that all is fourfold the Four Dogs are depicted as moving around Shree Guru Dattatreya. The Dog represents the faculty to listen, to listen far and to listen to the subtle: They have a better ability to listen than humans. In the esoteric practices. the student is made to listen more than to speak, to listen to the voice of the silence, where the subtle sound coming through the ether can be received and perceived.
All great initiates listen to the silence within and express the plan as is impressed on them in silence. Impression from the subtle planes is possible only if one is alert able and oriented to silence. The Dog represents such an orientation and the impression comes from higher circles. Astrology says all impressional teachings are the work of Jupiter whose name in Sanskrit is Guru. Thus it is the Principle of Guru that causes impressions upon the well-prepared beings.
Salagrama, the sacred natural stone in circular shapes formed out of shells and found in riverbeds.
The Tree of Audambara, the Cow, the Dog & the Saints.
Thursdays, the eleventh moon face, the full moon, the new moon are special times to experience Shree Guru Dattatreya.
In Sandalwood and the sacred ash (Vibhudi), His presence is experienced and is recommended to be used on the body.
In the pilgrim centres, banks of the sacred rivers, mountain ranges and in places of silence, His presence can be felt easily.
Shree Guru Dattatreya moves in a body of light, He is the "Embodiment of Knowledge", He can dispel ignorance and the related illusions. He is pure and poised. His form is bissful and sacred. He alerts, invokes, stimulates and makes strong the will of those who look to him for guidance.
He is the "Master of the Masters", the "Friend of the Universe" and the "Most Compassionate One".
May his touch of Divine Love inspire the reader to walk unto the path of yoga that leads one to the Sublime Truth.
Shree Guru Dattatreya sitting on the banks of the Godavri River, along with yaduraja, spoke to him about how He had gained wisdom from 24 different objects and beings whom He acknowledged as His Gurus.
He told Yaduraja that any object or being from whom we can gain knowledge, can be worshipped as our Guru.
Shree Guru Dattatreya, then identified these 24 objects and beings who are His Gurus.
The Earth sustains us, and eexpects nothing in return. It only gives of itself. The mountains remain stable and unshakable, the trees give us food, flowers, shelter without any expectations.
Similarly we must do our duty and not expect anything in return. We must live a life of sacrifice.
Air has no colour, taste or shape. It is neutral. The wise man does not praise or critisize anyone unnecessarily.
The Sky can be seen every where, similarly the power of God is omnipresent.
Water is always sparkling and pure. It takes impurities within itself and makes everything pure.
Similarly the wise man must be pure and not have any sinful thoughts. He must make others pure with His divine teachings.
Fire burns all the offerings put into it and gives blessings to the one who makes the offerings.
Similarly the wise man must accepts what society offers him and blesses it in return.
The Moon waxes and wanes but its shape remains the same.
Similarly the Grace of God is showered on mankind in different degrees but Got Himself remains one.
Water evaporates in the light of the Sun and the gives this water back in the form of rain.
The wise man must not keep the knowledge he has gathered to himself but He must share it with others for the benefit of makind.
The reflection of the Sun is seen in millions of drops of water but the Sun remains only one. The Power of God is present in all lbeings, but God remmains only one.
The Pigeon is very innocent and is easily caught in the trap laid by the hunter.
We must be careful and not get easily caught in the meshes of Maya.
The wise man must live his life like the Python. He must not wander around seeking alms but must be satisfied with whatever comes his way.
The wise man must
The Sea does not go beyond its borders but stays within its limits. The wise man is not overjoyed by good fortune or saddened by mifortunes, but always remains equanimous.
The wise man must not be attracted by men, women or wealth. He must not keep the company of women.
The Honey Bee gathers honey for others not for itself.
The wise man must give away whatever knowledge He has gathered to others and not keep it for himself.
The hunter puts a paper trap with a hole at the bottom, to catch the elephant and the elephant falls easily into the trap. The wise man must not fall into the trap laid by women.
The Honey Bee works very hard to gather honey but the Bee keeper makes smoke and takes it away and the Honey Bee is left with nothing.
Similary we must not store knowledge or wealth, but use it for others.
The Deer i s playful and falls into a trap while hearing sweet music.
The wise man must not be ensnared by the sweet words and charms of women.
The Fish gets caught when it tries to eat the food thrown into the net by the fisherman.
The wise man must not be trapped by the charms of women.
She gave up her singful path and started taking God's name and attained salvation (Mukti).
The wise man must do the same.
An Eagel found a piece of flesh and flew away with it. Another eagle came along and tried to take way the piece of flesh ; it injured the ealge with its beak and succeeded in snatching away the piece of flesh as the first eagle was liberated from the fear of other eagles.
The wise man must also give up the attractiono of (Maya) delisoun.
The little child is engrossed in his playfulness and is happy in his own world.
The wise man must happily remember God with single minded devotion.
She was alone at home and some guests arrived, so she started pounding rice for them. The bangles on her hand started making a tinkling sound, so she took them off, one by one, till only one remained and it did not make any sound.
The wise man must worship God in a quiet place where there is no noise or any distractions.
The Arrow Maker was so engrossed in his work that he was not aware that the king and his coutriers passed by with great pomp and splendour.
The wise man must fully control all His senses and remember God with single - minded devotion.
The Snake does not make a home for himself but lives in the home made by the rat.
The wise man must not make a home for himself but live whereever He is, when night falls.
The Spider makes a web and then eats it up himself. God has made 84 lakh beings and ultimately takes them back into himself.
The wise man must alsways be engrossed in prayer and meditation.
The Wasp makes a home for itself from mud and then makes little holes in it, through which it throws little insects into its home. Then it closes the holes with mud. Then the Wasp bites these insects till they cry out in pain : oh, here comes the Wasp. ultimately the insects becom just like the Wasp.
The wise man must take the name of god and ultimately become an image of god.
Thus we can see how Shree Guru Dattatreya has so beautifully and intelligently gathered wisdom from so many soutces.
It is said that if a person wishes to attain moksh, here is what he must do : for 52 Thursdays, after taking a bath, light a lamp, agarbattis, offer yellow flowers, wear yellow clothes, eat yellow dal and read about the 24 Gurus and the Datt Bhavni with great faith and devotion. Very soon all his problems will evaporate and he will find eternal bliss.