Thinking about the Guru disciple relationship


While searching for a spiritual guide and thinking about the role I wanted that person to play, I read a lot of books about Gurus and disciples. I had many questions. How could I learn from those who were on the journey but who had not reached that final destination? How would I recognize one who lived in a place of freedom?  What was it like for someone to take on the kind of “discipleship” that I was contemplating? How did a Guru work with disciples? What could I do to better facilitate the kind of relationship I wanted?

I was seeking feedback from the Guru to help in my personal development. How would I respond when I got negative feedback? I didn’t think about it then, later I realized it’s also important to think about how to receive and use positive feedback.

How did I plan to process the teachings I was seeking? Perhaps write it down, read it over, discuss it with others, try to act on it to see if that could bring clarity so that when we meet again I would be ready to receive more.

Most probably the kind of Guru I was seeking, worked in an organization. How involved would I be willing to be in such an organization? I decided I could make a firm internal commitment to the process of development but I was not willing to take any kind of formal or external initiations or vows. I wanted the emphasis to be more about making the changes I needed in the way I lived my daily life.

Another thing to think about is I could not just take, it would be important to me to find ways to give back to the Guru in ways that s/he would value and that would be congruent with my values.

I’m happy to say I found what I was looking for. Every relationship is a dynamic one just like this one, so I often reexamine the relationship, clarifying my goals and intentions and discussing with the Guru how I can make the relationship better. This relationship has been one of the greatest gifts I have ever received. I wish that every spiritual seeker may find a guide who will selflessly show the way to freedom.

 

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