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Guru means teacher in Sanskrit – one who brings light to those in darkness. There are many who aspire or fancy themselves gurus, more who throw the title around as if it had no meaning other than teacher but a guru is more than someone with charisma who attracts followers like a flame attracts moths.

It is a huge responsibility to assume the title of guru. To be truly worthy, a true guru is humble and modest. Perhaps s/he has many followers or few, it shouldn’t matter – what is important is the transmission of knowledge from the one who knows to those who know not but wish to learn. Sometimes this knowledge is easy to take in, sometimes difficult or even dangerous but a true guru has the ability to know when the student is ready to learn, understand, and most importantly put into practice what is being taught. And a true guru knows how to keep his/her followers safe as they explore, until they are experienced enough to explore on their own.

Perhaps another word for guru should be “parent”, as the teacher is (or should be) the spiritual grownup who watches over his/her “children” as they grow and mature as spiritual beings. The true test of the true guru is how the “children” turn out.

March 2018
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