Guru Purnima

(redirected from Gurupournima)

Guru Purnima

June-July; full moon day of Hindu month of Asadha
In Hinduism, a guru is a personal teacher or guide who has already attained spiritual insight. The tutorial approach to religious instruction has always been emphasized in India, and in ancient times it was the guru who personally transmitted his knowledge of the Vedas, sacred Hindu books, to his student. The student often lived at the home of his guru and looked up to him with devotion.
Guru Purnima, or Asadha Purnima, is the day set aside for the veneration of the guru. In ancient times, when students were educated in ashrams and gurukuls, this was the day they would honor their teachers, pay their fees, and give them presents. It was customary to fast on this day and to seek the guru's blessing.
This day is also known as Vyasa Purnima after Rishi Vyasa (ca. fifth century b.c.e.), a famous guru who is said to have compiled the four Vedas, the Mahabharata, and the Puranas, a series of 18 epics dealing with creation and the gods in the form of fables, legends, and tales.
SOURCES:
CelebFestIndia-1994, p. 62
RelHolCal-2004, p. 171
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