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    Qualifications of a REAL guru was giving to his sons by Lord Ṛṣabhadeva, one of the expansions of the Lord.

    3rd and 4th line here, Lord describes the nature of Sadhu, a Mahatma.

    If you are seeking a guru, seek a Sadhu/Mahatma. 

    Bhaktivedanta VedaBaseŚrīmad Bhāgavatam 5.5.2

    mahat-sevāḿ dvāram āhur vimuktes
    tamo-dvāraḿ yoṣitāḿ sańgi-sańgam
    mahāntas te sama-cittāḥ praśāntā
    vimanyavaḥ suhṛdaḥ sādhavo ye

    TRANSLATION By Bhakti Vedanta Swami Prabhupada
    "One can attain the path of liberation from material bondage only by rendering service to highly advanced spiritual personalities. These personalities are impersonalists and devotees. Whether one wants to merge into the Lord's existence or wants to associate with the Personality of Godhead, one should render service to the mahātmās. For those who are not interested in such activities, who associate with people fond of women and sex, the path to hell is wide open. The mahātmās are equipoised. They do not see any difference between one living entity and another. They are very peaceful and are fully engaged in devotional service. They are devoid of anger, and they work for the benefit of everyone. They do not behave in any abominable way. Such people are known as mahātmās."


    These mahatmas are impersonalists or devotees, like Prabupada is explaining above. Within impersonalist, their are Mayavadi and Brahmavadi. We do not associate with Mayavadi because Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, "Mayavadi Krishna Aparadhi"

    Mayavadi thinks he himself is Krishna, but forgot that he is Krishna. Thinks Maya is more powerful than himself, who is Krishna/God. To him God is not most powerful. Maya is. Example of mayavadi is Vivekananda.

    Brahmavadi is one who believes Krishna is Supreme Personality of Godhead, however he is attracted to impersonal form of the Lord, Krishna's effulgent Brahma Jyothi. Eg of Brahmavadi is Durvasa muni. 

    We do not approach Mayavadi or Brahmavadi. Approach only a devotee. Now what is the nature of such devotee? Caitanya Mahaprabhu describes in Caitanya Caritamrita Antya 20: The Śikṣāṣṭaka Prayers

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      (Click on the link on the left, to study the verse in detail from Vedabase)
      CC Antya 20.20 — Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu continued, “O Svarūpa Dāmodara Gosvāmī and Rāmānanda Rāya, hear from Me the symptoms of how one should chant the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra to awaken very easily one’s dormant love for Kṛṣṇa.
      CC Antya 20.21 — “ ‘One who thinks himself lower than the grass, who is more tolerant than a tree, and who does not expect personal honor but is always prepared to give all respect to others can very easily always chant the holy name of the Lord.’
      CC Antya 20.22 — “These are the symptoms of one who chants the Hare Kṛṣṇa mahā-mantra. Although he is very exalted, he thinks himself lower than the grass on the ground, and like a tree, he tolerates everything in two ways.
      CC Antya 20.23 — “When a tree is cut down, it does not protest, and even when drying up, it does not ask anyone for water.
      CC Antya 20.24 — “The tree delivers its fruits, flowers and whatever else it possesses to anyone and everyone. It tolerates scorching heat and torrents of rain, yet it still gives shelter to others.
      CC Antya 20.25 — “Although a Vaiṣṇava is the most exalted person, he is prideless and gives all respect to everyone, knowing everyone to be the resting place of Kṛṣṇa.
      CC Antya 20.26 — “If one chants the holy name of Lord Kṛṣṇa in this manner, he will certainly awaken his dormant love for Kṛṣṇa’s lotus feet.”
      CC Antya 20.27 — As Lord Caitanya spoke in this way, His humility increased, and He began praying to Kṛṣṇa that He could discharge pure devotional service.
      CC Antya 20.28 — Wherever there is a relationship of love of Godhead, its natural symptom is that the devotee does not think himself a devotee. Instead, he always thinks that he has not even a drop of love for Kṛṣṇa.
      CC Antya 20.29 — “ ‘O Lord of the universe, I do not desire material wealth, materialistic followers, a beautiful wife or fruitive activities described in flowery language. All I want, life after life, is unmotivated devotional service to You.’
      CC Antya 20.30 — “My dear Lord Kṛṣṇa, I do not want material wealth from You, nor do I want followers, a beautiful wife or the results of fruitive activities. I only pray that by Your causeless mercy You give Me pure devotional service to You, life after life.”
      If you look at the CC Antya 20.29 a true devotee, a guru you wish to seek, does not desire material wealth. Many gurus have a million dollar bank balance saved up for retirement, instead of depending on Krishna in old age. Many have hundreds, if not thousands of materialistic disciples. Some involved with women, though accepted Sanyasa and others may be still in Karma Kanda, fruitive activity.
      Just choose wisely. At the end of the day, we all seek our own kind, unless for mercy of a pure devotee.
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