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Top 10 Teachings of Mantralaya Guru Sri Raghavendra Swamiji

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji, also known as Rayaru or Guru Raghavendra, was a 17th-century saint and philosopher of the Dvaita Vedanta school of Hinduism. He was the pontiff of the Raghavendra Matha, one of the three main monasteries descended from Madhvacharya, the founder of Dvaita Vedanta. He is revered as a guru, a saint and an incarnation of Prahlada, the devotee of Lord Vishnu. He attained Jeeva Samadhi (a state of conscious exit from the mortal body) in Mantralayam, Andhra Pradesh, where his shrine attracts millions of devotees every year.

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was not only a scholar and a teacher, but also a compassionate and generous soul who performed many miracles and helped countless people in need. He also wrote many works on Dvaita philosophy, Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas and other scriptures. His teachings are based on the Vaishnava cult, Dvaita philosophy and the preaching of Madhvacharya. Here are some of his top teachings that can inspire and guide us in our spiritual journey.

Top 10 Teachings of Mantralaya Guru Sri Raghavendra Swamiji

1. Surrender to Lord Hari

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji taught that the supreme goal of human life is to attain the grace of Lord Hari (Vishnu), who is the creator, protector and destroyer of the universe. He said that Lord Hari is the only refuge for the souls who are trapped in the cycle of birth and death due to their ignorance and karma. He advised his devotees to surrender to Lord Hari with faith, devotion and love, and to chant his names and glories constantly. He said that by doing so, one can overcome all the obstacles and miseries in life and attain liberation from the bondage of samsara.

2. Follow the Guru

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji emphasized the importance of having a guru (spiritual master) who can guide and instruct the seekers on the path of spirituality. He said that a guru is essential for learning the scriptures, understanding the philosophy, practicing the rituals and developing the qualities of a true devotee. He said that a guru is like a mother who nurtures, protects and loves her child unconditionally. He said that one should serve the guru with respect, obedience and gratitude, and follow his instructions without any doubt or hesitation. He said that by doing so, one can please Lord Hari and attain his blessings.

3. Study the Scriptures

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was a prolific writer and a master of various branches of knowledge. He wrote commentaries on Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas, Mahabharata, Ramayana and other sacred texts. He also wrote original works on Dvaita philosophy, logic, grammar, astrology and mathematics. He encouraged his students and followers to study the scriptures diligently and systematically. He said that the scriptures are the sources of wisdom, truth and morality. He said that by studying the scriptures, one can gain clarity, confidence and conviction in one's faith and practice.

4. Perform Seva

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was known for his kindness and generosity towards all living beings. He performed many miracles to help those who were suffering from poverty, disease, injustice or calamity. He also supported many social causes such as education, health care, animal welfare and environmental protection. He urged his devotees to perform seva (selfless service) to others as a form of worship to Lord Hari. He said that seva is a way of expressing one's gratitude, compassion and humility. He said that by performing seva, one can purify one's mind, heart and soul, and earn merit for one's spiritual progress.

5. Practice Dharma

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji taught that dharma (righteousness) is the foundation of human life. He said that dharma is not only a set of rules or duties, but also a way of living in harmony with oneself, others and nature. He said that dharma is based on four principles: satya (truth), ahimsa (non-violence), asteya (non-stealing) and brahmacharya (celibacy). He advised his devotees to practice dharma in their thoughts, words and deeds. He said that by practicing dharma, one can avoid sin, maintain peace and order in society, and please Lord Hari.

6. Cultivate Bhakti

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was a great devotee of Lord Hari and his incarnations, especially Lord Rama and Lord Krishna. He composed many hymns and songs in praise of Lord Hari and his devotees. He also celebrated many festivals and occasions related to Lord Hari and his pastimes. He inspired his devotees to cultivate bhakti (devotion) towards Lord Hari as the highest form of love. He said that bhakti is the easiest and most effective way of attaining Lord Hari's grace and presence. He said that bhakti is not a mere emotion, but a state of mind that is filled with joy, bliss and surrender.

7. Meditate on the Guru

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was a great yogi who practiced various forms of meditation and mantra sadhana. He attained Jeeva Samadhi by entering into a state of conscious exit from his mortal body. He said that he would continue to live in his samadhi and bless his devotees who meditate on him. He gave his devotees a mantra to meditate on him: Om Sri Raghavendraya Namaha. He said that by meditating on this mantra, one can invoke his grace and guidance. He said that by meditating on the guru, one can also meditate on Lord Hari, as the guru is the representative of Lord Hari.

8. Respect All Religions

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was a staunch follower of Dvaita Vedanta, but he also respected all other religions and faiths. He said that all religions are different paths to reach the same goal of God-realization. He said that all religions teach the same values of love, peace, justice and harmony. He said that one should not criticize or condemn other religions, but rather appreciate and learn from them. He said that one should not be attached or fanatical about one's own religion, but rather be open-minded and tolerant towards others.

9. Be Humble and Content

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was a simple and humble person who lived a life of renunciation and detachment. He did not seek any fame, wealth or power, but rather devoted himself to the service of Lord Hari and his devotees. He was content with whatever he had and whatever came his way. He did not complain or grumble about anything, but rather accepted everything as the will of Lord Hari. He taught his devotees to be humble and content in their lives. He said that humility is the sign of wisdom, and contentment is the sign of happiness.

10. Have Faith and Hope

Sri Raghavendra Swamiji was a person of faith and hope. He had complete faith in Lord Hari and his grace. He had complete hope in the future and his destiny. He faced many challenges and difficulties in his life, but he never lost his faith or hope. He always trusted that Lord Hari would protect him and guide him in every situation. He always hoped that he would attain Lord Hari's abode in the end. He encouraged his devotees to have faith and hope in their lives. He said that faith is the source of strength, and hope is the source of courage.