Why do we need a teacher or Guru? Is it important to have a teacher to follow the spiritual path?
In this world we cannot do anything without the help of a teacher. The teacher may be necessary for a second or for a year or for many years. If I want to learn music, at the beginning I have to go to a musician. If I want to learn how to dance, I have to go to a dancer. If I want to learn about the sciences, I have to go to a scientist. In order to learn anything in this world, we need a teacher at the beginning. Then how is it that we do not need a teacher to help us in our inner, spiritual life?
If one is really sincere, if one feels that he can exist without everything, but not without God, then it is possible for him to realize God in one incarnation with the help of a spiritual Master.
How can one recognize a God-realized spiritual Master?
When you are with a God-realized Master, consciously or unconsciously you are bound to feel some peace, some Light, some bliss, some power because it is his very nature to radiate these things. He is not showing off; it is spontaneous, as the very nature of a flower is to emit fragrance.
When you are with a realized Master, you are bound to feel that the Master understands you; and not only that he understands you, but also that he has the capacity to comfort you and help you in your problems.
Why is it so difficult for a realized Master to be accepted by the world?
The world is not ready for spiritual Masters. They come into the world out of their infinite compassion. Humanity needs spiritual Masters for awakening and illumination, but in the outer life, people do not feel any urgency. The world is not ready, and perhaps it will never be ready as a whole. When the Masters come, they find unwilling, unaspiring human beings. For spiritual Masters to realize God, it takes quite a few incarnations. Realization is such an arduous task to perform. But it is much more difficult to manifest God on earth.
Why do some spiritual Masters go out into the world to increase their following?
In the spiritual world, some Masters feel the need to go out into the world, for the outer world is just a baby in consciousness. These Masters feel that there are many children who are crying for spiritual Light, spiritual wisdom, spiritual perfection, but do not know where or how to find it. So the Masters go from place to place and offer their Light with the idea of serving the divinity in humanity.