Without The Guru
Without The Guru is essential reading for anyone who has been attracted to the belief that when it comes to spirituality, `teacher' and `practice' are one and the same. Dr Finch puts into stark relief the fatal error of judgment which results from the confusion of a valued spiritual practice with the personality of the teacher of that practice. In Dr Finch's case the Guru to whom he chose to give so much was to many spectators especially incongruous, a child god who grew into a materialistic teenager, and today dresses in the deceptive garb of `international businessman'. But Dr Finch shows how the seduction lay not merely with the supposed charisma of the Guru, but with the central overriding theme of a belief in a powerful meditation being virtually `one and the same thing' as his Guru. For Dr Finch, and perhaps many others, the Guru Trap was sprung in quiet contemplation, not in the hysteria of personality worship.
This is not a book about the evils of cults or the failures of New Age thinking; books such as My Life in Orange, The Spiritual Tourist and Serpent Rising have already blazed that trail. What Dr Finch has written is a unique memoir encompassing both meditation and practical philosophy, and how the thinking individual, when faced with the challenge to cherished beliefs, can move forward to a healthy and fulfilling life. A life that, at least for Dr Finch, appears to have become far richer and more fulfilling once he was able to put down the unnecessary burden of "The Guru".
Whether the reader is long experienced in Yoga, meditation or other spiritual practice - with or without a Guru - or is about to take their very first steps on a philosophical journey, this book should be required reading.
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