Personal Followers – always able to approach their Guru – 14 Jun 11


Personal Followers

Yesterday I described mass followers, people who like to be one of thousands of followers. There is another type of follower who has quite the opposite attitude: the personal follower.

Personal followers don’t like to see a big crowd surrounding their guru. They want to be special and know if they are one of several thousands, they cannot be special. This is how they usually search for gurus that only have a limited number of disciples.

This has several advantages, the most important one being that they have a personal relationship with their guru. They want to get close to him and they are able to. They want him to know who they are. This gives them the feeling of being special and getting a special honour. They cannot only take pictures of him on the stage, from far away or buy his pictures at his events but they can actually take pictures with him, sitting by his feet.

Their guru is really approachable for them. They can see him also when he does not have a very big event. They can visit him at his home or Ashram, have a private talk, they can phone him if they need him and have one-on-one talks to have their questions answered and to get advice. With a guru of the masses, this would not be possible.

As this guru does not have a lot of followers, they feel special about being among the only ones who can do that. It is like an exclusive club that they are in. I also compare this way of having a guru to going shopping in a small boutique. You get personal attention and the feeling that you are special. You are in a special shop and a special customer.

When you talk to personal followers about other gurus, they may listen and even encourage you to go to another guru. For themselves they know however that there is no guru greater than theirs – because they have a personal connection. At the same time they believe that you will never have this because they are just lucky to be exclusively chosen by their guru.

In the end, it is great for both kind of gurus that there are mass followers and personal followers. In this way small and big gurus can both make their business. Small boutiques can exist next to big shopping malls because there are customers for both.

3 Replies to “Personal Followers – always able to approach their Guru – 14 Jun 11”

  1. If the teacher is good and competent, this is good and just the way it should be, in my view. This is the way we feel about any human relationship we value, within one’s family, one’s husband or wife, one’s true friends, one’s valued school teachers, and valued business colleagues. This is why progressives in the US and those concerned about the education system are always trying to make sure that class sizes don’t get too large, because they know that learning takes place best when the class size is small enough for there to be a personal relationship and rapport with the teacher. I feel this way about all friends, beloved family members, and teachers, that they are special to me and I feel grateful to be close to them. Close and loving human relationships are the most natural kind of relationships there can be, and there’s not enough of them now. Absolutely zero and nothing at all wrong with close and loving human relationships, and it’s so good that some teachers of spiritual matters too still realize the importance of this now and maintain it in their own relations. It’s mass relationships that de-humanize people. But close relationships are the most human, meaningful, and loving.

  2. In my opinion the problem starts, when they get too dependent on this one person. I have read more articles in your blog and know that you are not completely against the idea to have a teacher. I agree in this and can in this personal way of connection see a way to really learn and progress. But only with the condition that the teacher, or guru, encourages you to go your own way.

  3. Dear Deniz, Thank you again for your wonderful comment. I completely agree with you. I think nobody can deny that the best relationships are close relationships. Everybody knows this truth and it relates to your teachers, too. If someone is a teacher and does not wish to be worshipped – even by only 20 followers – this can be fully fine. It is however among these personal gurus and followers also usual that the guru remains a holy God-like person, worshipped and prayed to. And then it is going again the wrong way.I don’t understand why people run after Mass-Gurus or religious or spiritual performers and speakers. They travel from one country or city to another for their show and to sell their stuff and find new costumers. You see many coming from India to USA, too, attracting big crowds and masses.
    I hope the consciousness of people will grow more and they will understand the value of close personal relationships as well as understand that teachers are valuable but also humans with their character and the possibility to make mistakes.
    Lots of love