The Guru

The Guru

 

“One repays a teacher badly if one always remains nothing but a pupil.”
Friedrich Nietzsche

 

The Guru has found the answers to the ultimate questions of life and he is eager to share it with others. We might even say, he lives to teach others.

He is struck by insights and serving a higher cause. He really is convinced and certain about what he perceives, believes and wants to ensure the strength of his invitation to others to explore what he explored.

Thus, there is sometimes a tendency to be a little too patronising or schoolmasterly about what he wants others to know. This might actually be the problem: He knows. And others don’t. Therefore there is teaching needed. Even when this seems a bit of a sweeping judgement, there are multiple ways in which we manage to believe that we know and need to tell others. Also, there is such a tremendous tendency within us that rather prefers being told what to do or not to do, instead of really setting off and learning to trust ourselves and our inner compasses.

The Guru is only a Guru in relation to others because it’s a legitimate need for a teacher. However, people often put the Guru above themselves and for some start blaming this person for being and liking such a position. We forget that it was us who put the Guru in this position We might also consider that we tend to slightly, almost secretly hand over responsibility when we are not mindful about the role, position and needs we give or project onto the Guru.

A real Guru strives to make himself dispensable. The growth of the “student” or “disciple” is sacred to him and he is humble to the fact that life is mighty and the only thing he can do is serve, give feedback and support. He will never keep someone dependent; self-responsibility, free will and true commitment to the people is his bottom line. He is still in a process of evolution as well (instead of “already enlightened, knowing, accomplished”) and therefore the teaching process between him and his students/disciples/participants will be reciprocal.

When you pick this card you are called to reconsider your way of learning or your way of teaching. Your way of devotion or your way of enjoying devotees.

 

Questions:

*To what extent do you admire your teachers?

*Do you respect your students’/participants’ decisions and attitudes do you need to explain or judge it in order to accept it?

 

Exercise:

Simply take a step back when you notice you are saying sentences such as “My teacher has said….” What do you yourself really think, feel?

As a teacher/workshop leader: How much have you built a system that necessitates people coming back? How much do you put the students’/participants’ evolution in the centre, how much yourself or your teaching? How much are you able to still take encounters as teaching situations and critical feedback without putting it in a context that declares the person as wrong or “not there yet”?