No Guru. No Teacher. No Method?

[vc_row padding_top=”0px” padding_bottom=”0px”][vc_column fade_animation_offset=”45px”][vc_column_text]The quest of finding a guru is a very personal experience. Gurus are presenting themselves more and more around us in society, and the question is whether we can benefit from finding this guidance in our lives, or if we can find other ways to inspire wisdom.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row padding_top=”0px” padding_bottom=”0px”][vc_column fade_animation_offset=”45px”][vc_column_text]

Who is a guru?

For many of us, the most common introduction to the idea of a guru has come from people who get attached to a style of yoga and stumble across the fact that there is somebody behind that system. And that somebody is whom we might call a guru.

The word guru in Sanskrit means “heavy”, and this heaviness is there to help make us aware of where we are in a place and time and to help up through those blind spots in life when we can’t find resolution just by reading a self-help book. So in that sense, a guru is often necessary to help us ‘wake up’ and be present and not stay trapped in our own heads.

But there are also dangerous gurus who have taken advantage of their power and been abusive or associated with cult behaviours. This has left many people sceptical and searching for new ways to trust and be open to the idea of a guru. Gurus provide frameworks and these are helpful, but they’re not necessarily the only truth. We should investigate if these leaders are actually bringing us towards our goals, but also the idea that anything or anyone can be a guru to us.

Spiritual leader Eckhart Tolle famously said, “I have lived with several Zen masters – all of them cats.” You can inspire wisdom in many ways. Anything around us could be a “guru” or a tool to discover our personal guidelines.

What’s really teaching us?

So do we need a guru or not? I’m of two minds behind this idea. Dr Robert Svoboda explains, “the experience of working with a guru is not always pleasant, and can in fact be quite challenging.” The guidance of a guru might not always be constructive or easy to digest, which can then bring the sensation of standing on the edge of growth. I believe that we do need some form of guidance in our lives, whether that’s from the presence of a guru or maybe through practices like meditation, mindfulness or tantric yoga, which do not favour a guru, but can help us to awaken and be clear, right here right now. 

Don’t get me wrong. I know that there have been people in my journey who have helped me to gain this gravity and connectedness to the here and now. And because these people were in my life, I have been able to evolve in ways that maybe I couldn’t have alone. But on another level, if we were to lose the ideas of a guru in order for us to find guidance, would we still create the experience for ourselves? We are all so ready to follow direction right now. But who is really teaching us? Why do you need to attach yourself to a person?

Hey teachers, leave them kids alone!

No guru, no method, no teacher is something we commonly live by when we come into adulthood. After years of following guidance from parents, teachers and curriculums, we are suddenly left on our own. But the true question is – are we disciplined enough to live our lives like this? I don’t always have the answers (believe it or not), so I’m putting the question out there and asking you – why do we feel the need to force one another to ‘see’ things? If we simply ‘follow’ all the time and don’t take the time to distinguish ourselves, then we just become another brick in the wall.

For this reason, I am always encouraging more conversations between my students and myself. Because for any type of guidance, we should always be asking – how is this landing in your body, mind and all the layers of you? Is this an experiment gone wrong or right for you? Is this creating results? 

If you would like to dive deeper into finding out what is right for you – learning from the big guru (nature and it’s rhythms) – then join us for the Sunday Soul Sessions, starting from Sunday 24 May.