Just spent a wonderful month of daily (oops, with a couple of days off!) practice with Damien and Andrea. They are a wonderful couple and great teachers. This week was the first without them and their absence is keenly felt.
I have been blessed to have had the guidance of many awesome teachers. Each brings with him or her a special brand of teaching. Probably how each home smells different, depending on what food is cooked or what kind of detergent is used on the clothes. (Note: I do not mean to imply that any of my teachers smell :P)
Authorized, certified or not, a good teacher is not the easiest thing to come by. For one thing, yoga teachers always seem to be travelling. Or surfing. Or backpacking. And not all of us can get to Mysore, India. It's important to find someone who can help you grow your practice. Who will challenge your edge. On the flip side, there is also the need to step back from or avoid teachers who (unintentionally) hurt us, who do not or cannot listen to us, or who just simply have no connection with us.
Guru is a special connection. We may follow this person for an entire lifetime or we may outgrow him or her. But we all at one point need a light to follow. We all need a strong tree to cling to during a storm. How lucky for us to find a our guru. Have you met yours?