DIY: New-age guru

Your guide to a high-flying career with lot of perks including never having to comb yourself even once

Chennai: As the examination results are out, we get down to career counselling. And today we will find out what it takes to get into that one career, which is without doubt one of the most lucrative, outside of organised mafia and running schools and colleges: New-age guru.

It beats us as to why colleges have not cottoned on to this and are not already offering, say, a Bachelor degree in ‘Gurunomics’ or some such, as, after all, what it takes to become a new-age Guru can be easily curriculumized, especially because it mostly involves what class-room tutoring is generally about: talking incessant gibberish to a hall of people who have no way of escaping.

Okay, fret not. Here is a 3-step DIY guide to become a new-age guru:

The moment you decide that you want to become a career guru, your first move must be one to acquire a name. And don’t like a fool say that you already have been given one by your parents soon after your birth. Rule one in gurudom: Like on twitter and instagram, the most successful Gurus operate under an alias. And it better be catchy to get the buzz right later.

We will tackle this with the practical example of an existing name: Balakumar. Left to its original state, the name simply has no redeeming quality. Also, ‘Bala’ and ‘Kumar’ technically mean the same and hence tautological and can have copyright infringement issues with, say, ‘Sri Sri’. So something else has to be added. How about ‘Swamy Balakumar’? This straightaway is poor branding. Also, it may remind people of Subramanian Swamy. More importantly, ‘Swamy’ is dowdy and associated with a particular religion, whereas your new-age, jet-setting, corporate guru would have to come across as being religion-agnostic.

So then, what about any of these combinations? — ‘Jaggi Balakumar’ or ‘Jaggi Sri Balakumar’ or Bala Sri Kumar Jaggi’ or ‘Mahatria Kumar’ or ‘Bala Baba’.

Strike out them all. They are copy-cattish and don’t have that ring of originality. The smart thing is to opt for a totally new name that will get you a fresh identity, and also probably help you escape from testy old police cases. Google some Sanskrit names or even Greece (if you want to come across as eclectic), pick the quaintest ones (Kaivallya, Anirbhav) and you are well on your way.

This is a career that doesn’t offer much choice in terms of attire. You have to stick to a variation of the traditional kurta. On the plus side, though, there will be no occasion to wear a tie and — this is the best part — you don’t have to comb your hair even once. This is an avocation where an Einstein-style hairdo would be too low-key and underwhelming. If you have the hair sense of Dennis Rodman, you have a good chance of making it. Or it will be equally fine if you have a literal bad hair day every day. But not every one can be a Suhel Seth.

Also, you should not shy away from growing a beard, which you should also work it to the density and texture of standard coir roll (regular usage of beer shampoos will get you this). Your beard must also have strategic streaks of greys, giving you the look of cool intelligence in the deep meditative poses that you will have to strike on the covers of CD discs, to make which is the purpose of your gurudom itself.

Now we come to the easier part. As a new-age guru, what should you be talking about?

Well, this is an unretouched quote from one of the celebrated modern-day gurus: “When a thought is released from the seat of silence, a mere wish becomes a command to the universe”.

The above quote will tell you what is at the core of being a new-age guru followed by lakhs of volunteers. Yes, that unparalleled ability to stitch together perfectly purposeful and insightful words into totally a meaningless sentence.

So don’t worry that you don’t know anything about anything. Actually, it is a huge advantage here. You must confidently, to use a sensitive euphemism here, bullshit your way through. In other words, get a grip on HR jargon.

But you must basically build a body of work that is consistently silly and bizarre. Some examples (all true quotes): ‘Life is not a 100m race. It is a 110m hurdles race.’ ‘If you want everything from life first give everything you have to life’. ‘Let us dream and on the sheer strength of our dreams, let us get the world to stand up’.

And, just on the fly, I thought up these pearls: ‘On the hypotenuse of purpose you can climb on the right-handed triangle of life’. ‘It doesn’t matter if you are sleeping as long as your conscience is conscious’.

On the face of it, these may seem easy. But do remember it is difficult to consistently produce such stuff of intense inanity without mainlining heroin.

You must compile your sayings in easily-forwardable video nuggets that your followers can send it to all the friend groups they are part of on Whatsapp so that their friends will develop the resolve to get out of Whatsapp totally.

Also, your cult should have a caption that is at once catchy without, again, not making much sense. ‘Infinitheism –Let’s Go The Other Way’ is already taken. You can perhaps try ‘Trignometryism — Let’s Take A U-Turn’ or even ‘Polynomial Equationism —- Toll-Plaza Ahead’ and check whether they are already trademarked or not. Or you can give a shot at the inevitable: ‘Science of Existing’

If you keep at this for a bit, you should make it to the level of becoming a global guru, sitting alongside world leaders at high tables and even brokering peace between Lithuania and Congo, the two countries that haven’t even heard of each other.

That is all to it. This should work. It already has. No reason why it won’t again.