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GURUS — WHO WERE NEITHER MONKS NOR HERMITS

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There are many words in English literature which are incapable of exactly expressing the meaning of their counterparts in other languages. I felt the word “Guru” is one of them. When one tries to explore the meaning of this word, the results are multiple. The most popular one is a Hindu spiritual teacher. The other popular meanings are “an influential teacher or a popular expert”. There are words like a mentor, guide, peer, and many similar. But the power and the evolved state that the word “guru” conveys is hardly justified by these inept translations. I was recently asked to speak on this — My Guru! Interestingly, it was at an academic conference in the subject of Obstetrics and Gynecology. I being a teacher in the subject for many years now, the organizers were interested in knowing who were the best and most influential of all my teachers? They titled my talk as “My Guru”. It really challenged me. It was only after so much of mental roiling that I was struck by a brainwave. Look be…