A guru should be open to accepting cultural and habitual differences. For example, if the guru is Tibetan, he or she should be able to value a sincere hippie Australian student’s offering of a treasured seashell as wholeheartedly as a Chinese student’s offering of a kilo of pure gold.
An open-minded guru should be able to work with an American whose strong habit is to believe in a soul and who might be confusing that soul with buddha nature. An open-minded guru should be able to recognize that the habit of Dharma bums with their antiestablishment barter society is not necessarily practicing renunciation. An open-minded guru should understand why his lesbian students are having a hard time visualizing a male consort. An open-minded guru should be able to understand why Jewish people might have trouble accepting the concept that everything is a product of past causes and conditions and therefore there is no such thing as good and evil.
An open-minded guru should know that his Chinese students’ habit of saving face is not necessarily a fear of wrongdoing. An open-minded guru should understand why a Swiss student may not appreciate a wish-fulfilling cow.
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
from the book The Guru Drinks Bourbon?
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Further quotes from the book The Guru Drinks Bourbon?:
- Check how the guru handles criticism
- Cultivating trust in simplicity
- Gurus Don’t Fish for Devotion
- The authentic guru lineage is indispensable
- A proper guru-student communication
- Going beyond Rational and Irrational Devotion
- Humble Gurus
- Peeling of our patches of samsara
- Modern Buddhadharma
- Never opt for the easy way out
- Hearing the Dharma
- Controlled by circumstances
- Celebrity Gurus
- Dharma without devotion
- No one can please everyone
- You and only you will decide
- Look beyond titles and hats
- Dismantling the puzzle of dualism
- The whole purpose of the outer guru