Want to know what criteria I use to evaluate the authentic teachers (gurus, philosophers, leaders, and prophets) from the false ones?
1. Do they practice what they preach?
2. Do they have healthy habits?
Almost nothing turns me off more than an unhealthy hypocrite.
Anyone who is brilliant, and gives good advice, but who neglects their own health, or who minimizes the importance of health and longevity, is revealing a major lack of wisdom.
Anyone who is all talk, no action; who doesn't strive to attain a balance between theoretical knowledge and experiential knowledge, or who doesn't recognize the value of both philosophy and practice, not merely as a theoretical ideal, but as a lifestyle habit to be implemented in this lifetime, is revealing a major lack of wisdom.
It doesn't mean that such a person doesn't have anything to teach, we all have something to teach, but it reveals gaping holes in their lessons. They are teaching not by example, but by words alone, which are empty of the fruits of experience, empty of the essence of power which would be embodied within the nourishing words of an authentic teacher.
It doesn't mean that an authentic teacher is perfect, or doesn't ever suffer from poor health, or doesn't ever make mistakes, but they at least make the attempt to be healthy, and make the attempt to practice what they preach. And if they fail they don't gloss over their failure to do so as if it's a good thing, and they don't minimize the importance of being healthy and the importance of being consistent in what they say and what they do, simply because they have failed to implement it themselves. Again, anyone who does so, is revealing a major lack of wisdom.
Yeah, I judge. If you are unhealthy as a direct result of poor habits, and make no attempt to regain your health, or if you make major mistakes, and make no attempt to correct them, I tend to have less respect for you. If you are a fat ass, with the bloated physique of a refrigerator, I don't care if you have an IQ of 180, and a PhD in Medicine, you are revealing a major lack of wisdom.
I do not say this to make myself seem like I am so much better. I have my flaws; most notably being judgmental, and drinking alcohol too frequently. I do not consider myself a teacher. While I sometimes play that role, as far as what I know, I am a novice with limited knowledge. I am more of a student than a teacher, but I refuse to recognize the credibility of any teacher, of anyone who gives advice, or who proposes a philosophy for others to follow, who at the same time has unhealthy lifestyle habits, or who does not practice what they preach.
This is the quickest way to gain or lose my respect, and to clearly discern the fake gurus from the real ones.