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The few who have a broad experience of life, whose reason is sufficiently alive to judge both fruits and roots correctly and whose intuition is sufficiently active to recognize nobility when meeting it, who want the whole truth and nothing less, will find a friend (for he will not wish to be anything more) who will decline to permit others to hold a fanciful vision of an earthly perfection which is non-existent; who will be humble, sane, and balanced above all things, and yet prove with time--if they themselves prove loyal--to be also a sure and benevolent guide in this dark forest where so many wander bewildered, deceived, or self-deceived. Excessive unreflective saint-worship raises exaggerated and even false hopes. It has historically often ended with exploitation of the worshipper. But even where it does not, it is still incompatible with healthy self-development; an affectionate respect is wiser and safer. Let us not ask a teacher to be a god, because thereby we are liable to deceive and endanger ourselves, but let us ask him to be competent and illumined, truthful and helpful and compassionate.


-- Notebooks Category 1: Overview of the Quest > Chapter 6: Student-Teacher > # 1






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