Before one goes into the role of what Godmen play in one’s life, one needs to go into the various aspects of what actually one means by God and why at all one should reach God. So, the emphasis shifts really towards, what is God?
The concept of God varies from person to person and there cannot be a definite and firm framework in which we can fit the concept of God into a single format. This is subject to one’s own understanding of the concept of God and, therefore, various means are adopted by persons to reach God. Some believe in going to temples regularly, some chant mantras, some in doing social service, some in meditation techniques, some reading scriptures, some seeking solace from Godmen, and many doing many things to reach God.
Some people do not believe in the existence of God, and they have their own point of view to tell that God really does not exist. These groups of people also have their own Non-Godmen, who propagate themselves into establishing the non-existence of God. They are also in a way, Godmen because they disprove a fact which is already existing in the form of the Universe and the very nature in which we live, and are part and parcel of it. In fact, these Non-Godmen have to work much more than the other Godmen because they have to travel through existence to prove that existence is not by God. This is really a difficult subject, and I feel they are more close to God than anyone else because they constantly think of God to prove that He does not exist.
Now, coming back to Godmen and their role, as we have seen, the approach to reach God is many and in fact manifold in human thinking. As many types of ways can be perceived, that many Godmen are available today. In fact, some Godmen claim to make people reach God on an “instant” basis, as people are busy these days and the solutions are provided in capsule form. Many Godmen profess and propagate their own ways of reaching God, and in the process, claim to have helped many people. They also establish many ashrams, cults and they assume special personalities of their own, creating an empire within their own spheres. Like this, there are many Godmen who establish their firm foot advocating special ways and methods. Since the inquisitiveness and aptitude of people vary, depending upon their choice and capacity, people form groups and fit themselves into some of these establishments of Godmen. They also feel that by associating themselves with these establishments they are able to reach God. These methods only satisfy the eagerness in people and do not really reach the purpose for which the person is seeking God through these channels. At best, such people fit in themselves in such cult and the moment they do that, they go far away from the real concept of God and get into trivialities of the so-called cult to which they belong. We can extend this concept to the religion based groups, faith-based groups, ritual based groups and so on. In this approach, reaching God takes a backseat and seeking the methods of the cult or the Religion etc. takes priority. The result is chaotic and leads persons to waywardness. At best, these types of Godmen cater to a particular type of demand and glorify themselves in a particular spectrum. Definitely, there is nothing wrong with these methods as they satisfy human requirements in a particular fashion. But do such activities lead people to God, is a remote question.
All human beings are not emancipated and enlightened to understand the concept of God. Some are fortunate in this respect and some lag behind in dimensions and degrees. Therefore, one feels the necessity to get guidance from a Satguru (as distinct from Godmen). A Satguru never claims himself to be a Godman. He enunciates the necessary circumstances and makes the person seeking God to enquire himself into the subject. The Satguru guides the person. Each student is evaluated depending upon his intellect and understanding. The persons are encouraged to pose questions, which are answered by the Satguru strictly as per the Vedas or the original scriptures, neither understated or overstated. This increases the spirit of enquiry of the person towards reaching God. In fact, there is no mention as a personal God in the original scriptures. They refer to God as Purusha or the Truth, Eternity, etc.
This method is not mass-based, but person based. It serves the person to enquire about God from his own personal perception and understanding. The Satguru guides the person and does not superimpose any cult or a particular pattern. This was the method adopted by all our ancient saints and seers. A Satguru never claims that he is a Godman. He acts as an instrument of change. The change in the seeker according to his own particular thinking and method. So, such Satguru shows the object and the concept and does not become an object himself as many Godmen do these days.
Therefore, while a Satguru can be termed as Godman because he helps the person to seek God, we cannot say all Godmen are Godmen.