In Sanskrit, guru means "teacher," Sat Guru means "spiritual teacher." From an externalized point of view, the Sat Guru is perceived as a physical person. From an internalized point of view, the Sat Guru is perceived as wisdom—wisdom revealed through a live person, a life experience or direct intuition. Intuitively, we discover this wisdom through introspection. Personally, we find it with the help of a physical teacher. Experientially, we locate it in the sometimes-difficult experiences of life.
When this wisdom that is the Sat Guru comes indirectly—which would be through a physical person or the experiences of life—it guides us toward direct perception through intuition. Yet intuition is not the Sat Guru’s truest identity. That identity would be as it is for us—the Self God within.
From this sequential joining of truths, we can catch the whole crux of a one practice of a one yoga for a one purpose of God realization: that God, Self and Sat Guru are not separate. They are one. As such, these three in one constitute our ultimate identity and destiny.
For those who might assert that telling a beginning yoga student he or she is God, Self and Sat Guru might be recklessly unwise, we would reply, “How far wrong can such a teaching go that it couldn’t be caught and corrected by the life or live Sat Guru?”
The life Sat Guru—the experiential teacher—misses no opportunity to feed us lessons we earn and learn through the infallible law of karma. Although these lessons come from this life Sat Guru, they are derived from experiences we have set in motion of our own volition. Thus, the responsibility for the direction our training takes in the arena of life governed by action and reaction lies with us and not with our teacher. Knowing this, we perceive this neither wrathful nor merciful life teacher as an unbiased messenger of that karmic law we all must honor and obey.
It is, in fact, only because of the life Sat Guru’s perfect impartiality that the law of karma can function as it does, throwing back upon us the kind of education that can only occur through our experience of the consequence of nothing more or less than precisely what we ourselves have done.
Although the life Sat Guru is with us throughout embodied existence, the live Sat Guru usually makes his or her appearance only after we have experienced most of all the life Sat Guru has to offer. Yet when that live Guru finally does come, the life Guru does not go away. Where there is life, there is the life teacher. The live teacher only doubles the life teacher’s strength to more powerfully usher in the influence of that more deeply inner teacher that works directly through intuition.
When the influence of the Sat Guru becomes triply strong by working uniformly through all three of its channels, it becomes impossible to ignore. Fortunately, this full-blown preceptor of threefold power cannot force itself upon us before we are primed and ready. Love holds it back until love can hold it no more, which is when its love becomes our love and there is no separation between us.
In our deeper understanding of karma, wisdom, love and such, it becomes apparent why the Sat Guru’s full story can only be told one chapter at a time, like the play of life can only be experienced one act at a time, and the journey of yoga can only be walked one step at a time.