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.