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(go͞o`ro͞o, go͝or`o͞o), in Hinduism and Buddhism, spiritual teacher. The guru gives initiation into spiritual practice and instructs disciples, often maintaining a close relationship with them. Among the Sikhs (see SikhismSikhism
, religion centered in the Indian state of Punjab, numbering worldwide some 19 million. Some 300,000 Sikhs live in Britain, and there are smaller communities in North America, Australia, and Singapore.
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) the title guru was given to the 10 leaders of the community from Nanak (c.1469–c.1539), founder of Sikhism, to Govind Singh (1666–1708). Govind appointed no successor, declaring that the Granth (the Sikh scriptures) was the true guru.


(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

In Hindu tradition, a guru is an enlightened, spiritual teacher. The word comes from a Sanskrit word that means "heavy" or "grave," and it is roughly translated as "the venerable." In other words, being a guru is serious business, involving leading people out of the darkness of ignorance.

You don't become a guru by studying or going to school. You become a guru by finding enlightenment. And once you become a guru you don't advertise for students. Students are drawn to you.

Ramakrishna, the great nineteenth-century guru, has written:

Anyone and everyone cannot become a guru. A huge timber floats on the water and can carry animals as well. But a piece of worthless wood sinks, if a man sits on it, and drowns him.

Stories abound about famous gurus. Ramana Maharshi died in 1951 but is remembered because he sat alone on a mountaintop, so absorbed by ultimate consciousness that he neither spoke nor ate. Finally he had to be force-fed by his followers. But his glance alone was said to illuminate those who came to see him, drawing out of them the answers to questions they didn't even know they had.

Generally speaking, a guru will not try to "teach" you anything directly. Unlike Western teachers who try to deliver a body of knowledge, a prospective student of a guru will be asked, "Do you have a question?" The guru is attempting to meet the student at the point of their need.

A popular metaphor is that of the glass and the pitcher of water. The glass represents the student. The pitcher, the guru. The water is spiritual wisdom. If a glass is full of stale water, nothing can be added. First the glass has to be emptied of its contents. Then, and only then, can fresh water be poured. (This lends insight to the contemporary observation, "He is certainly full of himself, isn't he?" Such a person cannot be taught.) If a glass is on the same level as the pitcher, water cannot be poured. So it is expected that the guru will be lifted up to a higher level, or venerated.

This kind of veneration can be abused by unscrupulous gurus. But the authentic wisdom teacher knows that the real guru is within; it is the self. Swami Satchidananda writes:

What you wish to acquire is the way [the guru] lives, the serenity he has.... Ultimately all these forms and names should disappear into a formless and nameless One, who is the Absolute Guru.



head of the Sikh religious community in Punjab, India. The first guru was Nanak, the founder of the Sikh religion, who lived from 1469 to 1538 or 1539. Amar Das, who was guru from 1552 to 1574, made the post of guru hereditary. In the 17th century the gurus became secular rulers, owning land and collecting taxes from the members of the Sikh sect. The last guru, the tenth (1675 to 1708) was Govind Singh, who led the Sikhs in an antifeudal struggle.

What does it mean when you dream about a guru?

A symbol of spiritual authority. Meeting a guru in one’s dream can mean encountering one’s own inner guidance—a variation on the wise old (wo)man archetype.


a Hindu or Sikh religious teacher or leader, giving personal spiritual guidance to his disciples


An expert, especially in "Unix guru". Implies not only wizard skill but also a history of being a knowledge resource for others. Less often, used (with a qualifier) for other experts on other systems, as in "VMS guru".

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An advisor or teacher. The term, which comes from Hinduism, refers to a spiritual teacher. "Gu" means darkness, and "ru" means light; thus a guru turns ignorance into enlightenment. In the west, the term has been interpreted quite often as simply an expert in a field whether that person helps you learn or understand anything or not.
References in periodicals archive ?
Guru Nanak Devji who had deep faith in democratic institutions and democratic way of life and worked for the equality and dignity of all people is ever relevant for India- the largest democracy of the world.
If new ideas or experiences appeal; you like to relax and unwind with friends or a special someone, a visit to Guru in Paphos should be high on your list.
Lashing at PDP for politicising the issue, he said "You have no concern either for Afzal Guru or his family, neither you were concerned about people facing difficulties under curfew, you only wanted the situation go out of control, precious human lives are lost and you had an open field to play politics".
Its leaders were not in favour of the discussion on Guru as they feared that its outcome might affect the party in the state and at the national level.
We believe on this day Sikhs were told by their 10th Guru, Guru Gobind Sing Ji, to uphold the freedom of speech, to protect the weak and the oppressed so that people can practice the religion of their choice.
Daya Singh, president of Guru Har Rai Gurdwara said: "This anniversary is an extremely important occasion to all Sikhs and is being celebrated all over the world.
Guru is a Sanskrit word meaning teacher, honoured person, or saint, but is used by Sikhs to specifically refer to the ten Gurus who founded the religion, starting with Guru Nanak in 1469 and ending with Guru Gobind Singh in 1708.
How to Join the Guru Elite (including Attitude, Ethics, Methodology, and Market Niche)
Tradition and twentieth-century scholarship recognize four texts or recensions of the Adi Granth: the Kartarpur recension, said to have been compiled by Guru Arjan in 1604; the Banno recension, said to be descended from a direct copy of Guru Arjan's manuscript, to which a number of extra compositions were added; the Lahore recension, which lacks the extra material of the Banno version and has a different order at the end of the text; and the Damdami recension, said to have been compiled by the tenth Guru, Gobind Singh, in 1706, which lacks the extra compositions of the Banno version and is said to have been the first text to contain the works of Guru Tegh Bahadur.
So the gurus went to Japanese businesses, who, at the time, were not feeling very cocky, and they welcomed the terms with open arms.
MIRPUR (AJK) -- Paying tributes to veterans of Kashmir freedom struggle - Shaheed Mohammad Maqbool Bhat and Shaheed Mohammad Afzal Guru on their martyrdom anniversaries, Jammu Kashmir National Front (JKNF) Wednesday said that people of Kashmir owed a lot to martyrs who laid down their lives for the cause of freedom.