Have you ever known anyone who unthinkingly and slavishly follows a particular teacher?

John Cali

It doesn’t even have to be a single individual. It could be an organization, a religion, a political party, etc. A common characteristic here is the follower’s belief that everyone who believes differently is wrong. I know, because I grew up in a church that taught exactly that.

Sometimes the guru, whether it be one individual or an organization, pressures followers into this wrong-headed thinking. A good modern-day example of that is James Arthur Ray, the guru who’s been charged with manslaughter in the deaths of three people in one of his sweat lodges.

Ray allegedly once said this:

“…no one can talk to God, for any reason, except a priest. And I AM GOD. If you talk to god for any reason, you immediately die.”

How’s that for wrong-headed thinking? Worse yet, his followers believed him. This is so contrary to everything Spirit and I have been saying for years, as have many other teachers.

Our society often perceives the followers of such gurus as Ray as “victims.” But are they really victims?

Since I’m without my main computer this week (see the news item in this week’s email), I’m repeating some of Spirit’s wisdom from a while back. They were talking specifically about the sweat lodge deaths.

Spirit

Whenever human dramas like this unfold the tendency is to find someone to blame. Certainly by the dictates of your legal system, James Arthur Ray may be found guilty.

But is there any real blame here?

We think not.

After all, those folks at the sweat lodge were there voluntarily. Some have characterized them as followers of Ray’s. Nonetheless they chose to be there. He did not force them.

From the soul perspective, from our perspective, there is no blame or guilt. There is only responsibility — the responsibility of each of you for yourself.

We suspect at least some of those sweat lodge participants had serious reservations about being there. Perhaps including those three who died. You all know, at some level of your awareness, when and how you are about to die.

While a charismatic leader such as Ray attracts many followers, those followers sometimes give their power away and follow the leader blindly. That is an abdication of responsibility for one’s self.

Being inspired by someone like Ray is fine. Following such a person blindly, while disregarding your own inner guidance, is not fine.

As tragic as this event is from your human perspective, there are no villains or victims. Everyone involved was a co-creator of this event. We are not being callous and hard-hearted here. We have the greatest compassion for those adversely affected.

However, the “bottom line,” if you will, is you all create your own experiences, every bit of those experiences.

The one and only true guide in creating what you want — and in avoiding what you do not want — is your own inner guidance. If you insist on becoming “addicted” to a “guru,” let that guru be yourself, your own inner guidance.

Listen to it. Trust it. It will never lead you astray.