When we think of people who’ve achieved what we might call “guru status”, we come up with names like Mother Theresa, The Dalai Lama, Martin Luther King, or Mahatma Gandhi.
But then, there are some who’ve played a much more intimate and personal role in an individual’s life and although they aren’t Jesus-level status, they are, by definition, gurus. Maybe Tony Robbins, Albert Einstein, or Nikola Tesla. It really could be anyone.
While the word “Guru” seems to have a God-like feel to it, it simply means “Teacher”, translated from Sanskrit. Some of mine are Sadhguru, David Icke, Jeremy Clarkson, David Lee Roth, David Goggins (what’s with all these Davids?), Wim Hoff, Bruce Lee, Simon Sinek, Gary Vaynerchuck, and … Mother Theresa.
Yes, I follow a flamboyant Jew, an East Indian Mystic, a loud-mouth opinionated Brit, a badass black Navy Seal, another Brit with some strange yet very insightful thoughts on the world, a cursing Russian immigrant millionaire entrepreneur, a Chinese martial artist, an author/speaker, and an Albanian-Indian Roman Catholic Nun, who’s mere presence elevates the atmosphere.
While I don’t really use the term “guru”, they are my mentors from afar. I don’t know them personally, but I feel what they’re vibing. And for me, it’s not so much about what they’re saying, but how they’re being. The way they move, think, communicate, philosophize, and live.
Some “gurus” can be fleeting. They pop into our field of experience for a brief moment and drop a thought-bomb on us. This happened to me the other day, when Killer Mike was talking with Joe Rogan.
He said, “We are afraid to see the divinity within ourselves, because if we do then that requires us to act differently.” This is why we keep our gurus separate from ourselves: we follow the Asian martial artist, the East Indian yogi, and for many people, “a white version of Jesus” (Mike’s words).
The analogies he makes aren’t important, but his point is. He’s saying, this way we keep the divine being at a distance; removed from who we are so much that we have an out. We can follow it and aspire to it, but don’t have to achieve it or be it, because being it, is too much to bear.
We are afraid to see the divinity within ourselves, because we would have to acknowledge the darkness within us. But, that’s not the scary part; we would have to acknowledge the light and that can be quite terrifying.
We look to Jesus to wash away our sins, but it’s not any religion’s responsibility to do this. It is ours.
Call them what you want, we should all have gurus, mentors, teachers, and fleeting thought-bomb droppers and I’m sure most of us do. But, we don’t have to be them, nor should we. We take some from this one and that one, digest it, marinate it, and make a version of each our own.
Ultimately … we should all be our own guru.
Photo by Thiago Cardoso on Unsplash.