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Everything that glitters is not Gold

Continuing the description by Sri Adisankaracharya swamy in Bhaja govindham, about true sanyasa it can be said that similar to those fraudulent people found in the Politics and in the society, also in the spiritual world there are the fraudulent people. We have to be careful about these fraudulent Sanyasis too.

Everything that glitters is not Gold. The real Sanyasi is pure Gold and the fraudulent Sanyasis are the metals with the glittering of the Gold. Unless we observe properly, we may often get confused about the real Gold and the just-glittering gold. As we can not confirm whether a shiny metal is Gold or not unless we test its specific properties, similarly we can not find easily who is the right spiritual master. We must differentiate this ‘Gold’ from the just-glittering others.

Can an actor who plays ‘Satya Harischandra’ (a legendary Indian King who never spoke a lie in his life despite his difficulties) role in a drama be a Harischandra in the real life? A Drama is always a Drama, and the Life is the Life. In the same way, a false Sanyasi who even if seems to be a real Sanyasi by this attire, can never become a real Sanyasi. This is also a drama. A fraudulent drama.

From another point of view we can say that the life of ‘Kapata Sanyasi’ (Fraudulent Sanyasi) can not be even compared with a drama. The actor in the normal drama is known to the audience as an actor. But the role of Kapata Sanyasi in our real life can not be understood that much easily compared to a drama. He looks very similar to a real Sanyasi. Here the innocent public will be deceived.

Instead of common public, for the time being, let us consider the case of Sita Devi, the queen of Lord Sri Rama Chandra in ‘Ramayan’. She was also deceived in the same way. When demon ‘Ravana’ came to abduct Sita he was also in the form of a Sanyasi. And at that time Sita herself was deceived by him.

To differentiate between a real Sanyasi and a fraudulent Sanyasi is a task next to the impossible because generally public seldom get a doubt about the spiritual masters, unlike in the other political affairs.But with a little common sense, if an observation is made on the life style of the Sanyasis something real can be understood.

He who always wanders with a desire of spiritual wisdom is a Sanyasi. The affairs relating to the physical world will not affect the mind of a Sanyasi. He who has won the battle over the love and hate or who has been trying to win the battle over these qualities by gaining the spiritual knowledge, is a Sanyasi. He who does not have the desire about the perishable world is a Sanyasi. He who quits the desire of name and fame, and who has an undoubted belief and interest in the realization of truth is a Sanyasi.

Those hypocrites who act as Sanyasis, those who always strive or struggle for name and fame, steal the great works or writings by the ancient wise gurus and  proclaim that all that knowledge is originating from them with their superfluous  lectures. This is similar to words spoken in a drama. Those Kapata Sanyasis preach to the public but they do not try to understand those principles. When they are even unable to understand how can they practice in their daily lives?

That is why, this kind of unwanted Sanyasis are described by Sri Adisankaracharya, as those who are blind though they can see actually. (Pasyannapi cha na pasyathi moodaha). Thus the guru Sriadisankaracharya, comments that this kind of behaviour of these Kapata Sanyasis is a means of their livlelihood. (Udhara nimittham bahukrutha Veshaha).

Credits: Spiritual discourse by Sri Swami Sundara Chaitanyananda
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