Questioner: If we surrender to the great souls that lived thousands of years ago, can that be considered surrender? Can we make any progress through such surrender or do we need to surrender to a living great man?
Dadashri: You can progress even through paroksha (indirectly- one not currently living). However if you find such a living (pratyaksh) person, then your liberation will be instant. The indirect approach will give you the benefit of progress but there is no liberation without meeting the living great human being.
After surrendering, you do not have to do anything else. If a child is born to us, the child does not have to do anything. In the same way, after surrendering, you do not have to do anything.
To whomever you surrender your intellect; you will attain the energies of that person. If you have surrendered, then you will attain everything of his. Just as we join two tanks with a pipe, then no matter how much water is in one tank, the other tank will bear the same level of water. That is the power of samarpan (surrender of the mind speech and the body).
He that has attained moksha himself and who sets out to give moksha to others is the only one that can give moksha. I have set out to give the gift of moksha, therefore, I can give moksha. Otherwise, no one else can give the gift of moksha.
See video on how grace of living Guru helps one to attain liberation (Moksha).
Book Name : Guru and Disciple (Page #48 Paragraph #2, #3, #4, #5 & #6)