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Who knows what a GURU is? (歴史篇)


[Since 1999/10]

[前] イスラム教

Encyclopedia Britannica (1998)

"Encyclopedia Britannica CD 1998 Multimedia Edition" というのが手元にありましたので、引いてみました。‥ あっ! すげー!! (@o@)

[ 1999/4 ]

[Table of Contents]



(Sanskrit: "venerable"), in Hinduism, a personal spiritual teacher or guide who has himself attained spiritual insight. From at least the time of the Upanisads (ancient commentaries on the sacred scriptures), India has stressed the importance of the tutorial method in religious instruction. In the educational system of ancient India, knowledge of the Vedas (sacred scriptures) was personally transmitted through oral teachings from the guru to his pupil. Classically, the pupil lived at the home of his guru and served him with obedience and devotion.

Later, with the rise of the bhakti movement, which stressed devotion to a personalized deity, the guru became an even more important figure. He was not only venerated as the leader or founder of the sect but was also considered to be the living embodiment of the spiritual truth and, thus, identified with the deity. In at least one sect, the Vallabhacarya, the devotee was instructed to offer his mind, body, and property to the guru. The tradition of willing service and obedience to the guru has continued down to the present day. The guru is frequently treated with the same respect paid the deity during worship, and his birthdays are celebrated as festival days.

Religious self-instruction is considered dubious. It is the guru who prescribes spiritual disciplines and who, at the time of initiation, instructs the student in the use of the mantra (sacred formula) to assist in his meditation. The example of the guru who, though human, has achieved spiritual enlightenment leads the devotee to discover the same potentialities within himself.

Copyright 1994-1998 Encyclopaedia Britannica
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  • むかしむかし、Upanisad の頃、 guru は個人的精神的な先生あるいはガイドであった。 ( [ 『マヌ法典』におけるグル ] を参照のこと)
  • のちに bhakti movement の高まりとともに guru の位置付けも変わってきた。 単に指導者として尊敬されるだけではなく、 spiritual truth の体現者と 考えられるようになった。 vallabha 派では修行者は guru に his mind, body, and property を捧げるよう教えられるが、この伝統は現在に繋がる ものである。
  • guru は spiritual enlightment に達しており、それゆえ guru による指導が大事であると考えられている。

[Table of Contents]


この辞書の解説は、勉強になります。ポイントは、時代の変化とともに「グル」の 意味内容が変わってきたということ。

 最初は「聖なるもの へのガイド」的な位置付けだったものが、 中世の頃から(?)「バクティ(信愛)」が重視されるようになってくるとともに 「真実がそのまま姿をとった方」的な解釈をされるようになり、 それが現在につながっている、と。

 つまり崇拝の本当の対象が「太古の聖典で示されている最高神」だったのが、 「最高神を体現する、目の前にいるあの人」に移ってきたということですよね。 平たくいえば「教祖様への崇拝化」。

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