The word guru is applied to all sorts of fields showcasing mastery of some knowledge and expertise. We often hear it as “oh he is the social media guru”, or “she is the guru of marketing”. The the word’s origin is from sanskrit, guru meaning a teacher or guide with extensive knowledge on a subject. In Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism there is a highly regarded respect towards gurus. It is is believed that they have a direct line with the divine energies.
Do You Need a Guru?
Throughout the years, I encountered many friends and family that have always felt they need for a guru. They want guidance on how to move towards their true path. To have a guru is like a sense of security, and who doesn’t like that? As their growth happens, they move on to another guru that is better aligned. At the end of the day, gurus are mortal people just like you. They too might have families and have personal or health issues in life. Just like anyone else, they are vulnerable to also operate from a place of ego. We would hope and expect them to follow the virtues of being a guru. Though they also have many tests in life with some deviating from the virtuous path.
Hundreds of years ago, the gurukul system was the most prevalent system where gurus would choose who they wanted to initiate and pass on the knowledge. The students came to live with their gurus, as if they were family members in their house and the relationship was intimate. In fact, ayurveda was passed down through the gurukul system, the knowledge of the vedas, herbs, mantras. So much has changed, this gurukul system scarcely exists anymore.
The gurus that I am mainly referring to are the spiritual gurus. Some of these gurus, pass on wisdom and knowledge. Some also share times predictions and directly help to better their devotees lives. These days, most are the hybrid of an astrologer/pyschic, healer and spiritual wisdom keeper. Do this mantra, “108 times a day and you will be clear from your financial woes”, or “do this puja (offering) in that temple once a week for 4 months” are some things they might suggest.
The thing is I had grown up with all this, and I had seen so many family and friends in this loop. While some of us are actually seeking wisdom and insight to grow ourselves, some of us attract these sort of gurus into your life, to “make it better”. There are authentic gurus out there that will not give this sort of guided astrologer/ psychic advice. Instead, they will push you to find your own answers, for you to get in touch with your higher self and soul. No quick fix remedies, no easy solutions, only guidance to find your own answers.
How are we supposed to know what kind of guru who is what? Once you start to follow or believe that this is my guru, the caveat is there must be faith and devotion. I know a few people that felt that certain gurus had such a cult feeling that they could not bear it. For others it took them years before they realized what all was happening behind the scenes with their guru and eventually backed out. Some gurus have even used blackmailing, basically if you leave this community and the guru’s worship then your life will spiral downwards.
Purpose and Authenticity
The question is why do we need a guru? The purpose of a guru has indeed evolved, the original authenticity is jeopardized for commercialism. The gurus in the old times would teach from the scriptures and allow their students to bloom. There was a process of allowing, not suppressing.
Each individual be it a guru or another that crosses your path has some purpose. With a guru, there may be some words of wisdom or knowledge worth taking in, only if it resonates with your soul.
A guru is a bridge to the Source. It is important to understand the mortal qualities to a guru and their limitations. At times it is the guru developing an ego and other times it is the devotees encouraging his/her behavior. Hierarchies created within the guru’s community, fantasizing the guru as God. The purpose of a guru is to help us connect with our spirit and higher selves, so then why use a guru in the first place?
We all have this connection. The thing is that no one other than our own individual selves can have as powerful of a connection to our soul than us! We are our own guru. It is so difficult for us to believe that we have it within us. We are shifting into a higher vibration collectively, where we are more connected in the mind, body and spirit. Our ability to connect to our higher selves is becoming more easier as the veils and heavier densities are lifted. I am not the first person to say this. Many healers and those in the spiritual field have been saying this for quite some time in the last few years.