The search for a true yoga/spiritual teacher is easy if you follow the prescribed procedures in the sacred texts. If you ignore the procedures, you are likely to be caught in a vicious net. You are careful in conducting most of the secular activities, and desire to have the best of the choices. For example, if you wish to admit your son/daughter in a nursery school, you visit/make enquires about the reputation of the school. As an adult, in career selection, you must have consulted your friends, neighbors and consultants to shape your choice of the stream while pursuing higher education.
Even for getting married you went through the process of elimination before the final selection (unless it is a love marriage!) But how do you zero in for the selection of an authentic Perfect Master for yoga? Your approach has been casual. Just because your neighbor took initiation from a particular Master, had opportunities to listen to his spiritual discourses with oratorical skills and got some secular benefits, you wished to follow his footsteps without further thought!
The moot question is consultation with others is a good idea but not the complete solution. Your search needs to be fuelled by an earnest desire to seek a Perfect Master. Is it curiosity, by hearing the tales of miracles performed by certain pseudo-saints or whether it is genuine crave to pursue the path of spirituality? True inquisitiveness and passing curiosity, are much different. In the spiritual realm, genuine inquisitiveness is always rewarded. The seekers testify that, just as you are in search of a true Perfect Master, the Perfect Master is also has the urge to search for the true disciple. Such a meeting between the two has the divine sanction and blessings. For a layman, not well-versed in the subject of spirituality, this claim may look questionable. But the seekers, the ones who have been initiated by the Perfect Masters, realize the sanctity of the statement.
As per the revelations of Lord Jesus Christ,
“Ask and it will be given to you; Seek and you will find; Knock and the door will be opened to you.”(1)
This quote from the Bible is mentioned to emphasize that yoga and spirituality are not the assets of any particular religion. The Perfect Masters belong to the entire humankind. So, surrendering at the feet of the Perfect Master is not a concession; it is the scientific approach. Just as a student desires to take coaching from the best Professor on the subject, spirituality demands that you take the lessons from the one who knows the Truth. The difference between an ordinary individual and the Perfect Master is simple yet profound. We apply our reason and try to get the perspective from one angle– our own angle. The Perfect Master knows the solution from all the angles, he knows the past, present and future and therefore his counsel and guidance is the best and unchallengeable.
So, even if you have made the initial wrong choice, it is not too late to correct the mistake. Do not blindly follow the fake. He is the Perfect Master, who is well-versed in the art of Yoga, and who has the capacity to take charge of your inner being to bless you with the yogic power that is dormant within you; who has the power to kindle the Divine Light. Such an individual alone is the Perfect Master.
(1)Matthew 7:7(New International Version)