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Rene Learns About Guru Purnima

Rene Learns About Guru Purnima

GuruPurnima explained to Rene by Papa

Did you know there is science behind the concept of Guru Purnima? Read this story to know the history behind this celebration which Papa narrates to Rene.

By Somashis Gupta

“Papa – Rene Series”

Starring: Triparni Das as Rene and Chayanchit Das as Papa

Living in the city of Calcutta, for the last 27 years my experiences has been antithetical. But it is difficult to comprehend the whole of this protean city. In fact when I come to think of it, I realize, how little I known about the place. For instance I was unaware that Lower Circular Road (Now AJC Bose Road) was originally a ditch dug sometimes in 1742 to prevent the Maratha Bargis to attack and loot the villagers. The morning started with such thoughts when I heard Rene asking…

“Papa what is Guru Purnima?”

I wanted to read the newspaper where a detailed report was published about the James Webb space telescope, so preferred answering in short, I said “It is the day we show our respect to our teachers” hoping that will satisfy her.

But I was so wrong. She asked again “But why this specific day? Don’t we respect our teachers every day?”

I kept the newspaper aside, obliterating all intentions of the telescope and said “For this you need to understand the meaning of the words Guru Purnima.” I took a sip from the cup of tea.

“And what is that?” Rene was curious.

“The word Guru is a combination of two words” I informed “where ‘Gu’ means darkness and ‘Ru’ meaning he who dispels them”

“Oh! So Guru is the one who dispels darkness, which is our teacher, right?”


“And what about Purnima” Rene asked again

“Like ‘Guru’ ‘Purnima’ too is made up of two words” I explained “Purna means ‘complete’ and Ma meaning ‘Moon’”

“But Ma means mother isn’t it?” I knew Rene would ask this question

“Mother in Sanskrit is Matri” I corrected.

“Okay so as I understand” Rene catechized “Guru Purnima means a complete moon or a full moon day where, the one who dispel darkness is shown respect”

“Right you are”

“But still I do not get it why this specific day?” Rene asked again.

“There is a lot of science behind it” I said

“What? There is science in this as well?” Rene was surprised.

“Well some history and a lot of science” I continued “you see during ancient times, probably 3000 years back , it was this day when the pathshalas or schools reopened for its pupils after the summer holidays”

“Why this specific day” Rene enquired.

“It is because this is the day, when the solstice happens making the days shorter and the nights longer” I explained “and due to this our body goes through certain changes.”

“What changes?” Rene asked

“Changes in metabolic system and more importantly changes in maltonin level which leads to negativity in our body” I said “so it is important to control the same by certain processes which the students learn from their teacher.”

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“Oh I see that is why the school used to start on this day?”

“Yes” I continued “In fact it is the patshalas or Gurukul where pupils were trained to live with the changing circadian with the practice of vedantra, yogantra and tatantra.”

“Ah! Now I understand.” Rene looked satisfied.

“There is another concept as well” I wanted her to know all the details.

“What is that Papa?”

“It is believed that, Gautam Buddha on this day 2500 years ago delivered his first sermon to his followers. It is also believed that Veda Vyasa the author of Mahabharat was born on this day”

“Oh! Interesting” Rene looked satisfied “but I feel the scientific reason is more important”

“Would you like to know them?” I asked

“Yes, Of course.”

“Well….” I was interrupted by Rene’s mother who was calling us for breakfast “let’s go for breakfast. I will tell you about the processes some other day.

After all ভোজন গেলে সাধন হবে না.

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