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Yogi Bhajan Quotes on Teaching

A Teacher doesn’t hear—he’s deaf. He doesn’t speak—he’s dumb. He doesn’t see—he’s blind. He just carries the teachings. He never amends them, never adds to them, never subtracts from them. You don’t interpret it; you just respectfully carry it to another, and that to another, and that to another. When you do this, all knowledge will come to you. Everything will dawn on you. Your Teacher will speak in you. Your Teacher will guide in you. 7/22/96

 

The first role of the teacher is to be humble...the character, the courage, the grace, and the magnitude of a person is in practicing humility. One who cannot go under can never grow. The first power of the seed is to go under, and then grow.
7/22/96


Some of you who are sitting here will become great Teachers of the Age of Aquarius. You must understand that you have to build your character first. Care for yourself, be kind to yourself, be compassionate to yourself. That is what you have to do.
4/23/97 

 

If you want to become a Teacher of Kundalini Yoga, then your inside and outside both have to be saintly. Then the power of your touch, sight and word must create miracles and will create miracles.
4/24/97


People are in pain, and they need the pain alleviated. They need to know that you can see that pain. If a person is hungry, first feed him. To a starving person, food is God. Once he is satisfied and a little secure, he can consider the possibility that God is food. The ability to apply consciousness will make you a good teacher.
Aquarian Teacher, p. 265

 

Each student who comes to a Teacher is his personal, infinite responsibility.
4/23/97

 

A Teacher has no territory, no jurisdiction, no control, and no communication but the Will of God. He uses his little will, his personal, private will to let God’s Will flow.
4/23/97

 

It’s very important that you should know you and it’s most important that everybody should know you as trustworthy, honorable, graceful, steadfast, serviceful, kind and compassionate. These are a few faculties of a Teacher.
4/23/97

 

A Teacher carries the will of all humanity, plus the Will of God, plus the Self, plus everybody’s destiny. It’s a whole load.
4/23/97

 

Some people think that teaching Kundalini Yoga, the most powerful science of human strength and chakras, is a business. The first thing Jesus did is that he destroyed all those who were trading around the Temple.
4/23/97

When the whole world falls, you must stand as a lighthouse. When there comes a great, great destructive typhoon of temptation, you must bless it and walk out of it.
4/23/97

 

My kindness is your death. My kindness means you'll never be a teacher. Never. My affection is that I totally carve you out and you cannot get defeated by time.
7/20/96

 

That's the pride of a teacher: that he has the privilege to serve another student, because somebody served him.
7/22/96

 

You are always afraid of tomorrow. "Should I become a Yoga Teacher? We will be poor. We will die hungry. My spouse will leave me. Da, da, da, da, da, da, da da, da, da, da." This is what you do. But if you just think, "God has guided me to this. I'm going to grab it,”—unto God it is. Give God a chance to work, then see what happens.
April 25, 1997

 

Why are you becoming Teachers? Because it is the highest status in a human life. It is elegant, it is excellent and it is very, very, very, very, very fulfilling.
August 1, 1996

 

It doesn’t matter how much I teach you or how much you learn. The role of the Teacher is to elevate another person.
April 21, 1997

 

You must know and see and believe and trust you are never an individual. Your “I” is an institution. A Teacher is an institution for help, for service, for raising people’s consciousness, and granting them the Heavens. He’s the guarantor—a Teacher is the guarantor that the other person’s life becomes heavenly. So if you are teaching a class for that ten or fifteen dollars, you are not in the right job.
July 22, 1996

 

After twenty-seven years I am teaching the first Teacher’s course. Do you know how I used to pick teachers? “Hey, you two get up. Are you married or not?” “Oh yes, we are married.” “Go to such-and-such a city and start a center there.” And people stood their ground. Some of them are still there, enjoying and being. But now we are teaching how to be a Teacher. Why? Now the Age of Aquarius has come on us. We have to deal with the whole world, so everybody has to have this hands-on work.  That’s why.
July 23, 1996

 

So just understand, with the grace of being a Kundalini Yoga teacher there’s a vastness of your heart which must go with it.
July 26, 1996

 

That is the first sign, the first qualification of a Kundalini Yoga Teacher—that he goes through calamity with a radiant smile, he deals with another person with a most humble understanding and he lives in the core relationship of Imperial Majesty. He appears as he appears, in utmost grace, with a bright and beautiful face and he doesn’t look like he belongs to this Earth. He belongs to the Lord because he is the Lord.
July 26, 1996

 

First, we identify ourselves: We are, we are. Second, our words should be such that they should cool down any fire, the desperation, the depression of the person. Third, we must have the power to uplift the soul and serve the person, to be graceful. And finally, we must stand pure.
July 20, 1996

 

You want to be Teachers. Then you have to rise above all people. You have to rise above yourself also, and then everything becomes minor. What becomes major is the answer to the call of duty.
April 21, 1997

 

How are you going to fit in? How are you going to come out of your shell? How are you going to come out of your cocoon? How are you going to deal with everybody with oneness of self? How can you open so much that you can embrace everything? How can you close yourself so that you can be?
July 31, 1996

 

Become a Teacher and see how things come to you. You are a vehicle. In you there is the purity and piety of a Teacher that you must protect and serve. Then out of your word will come humans who will be invincible, blessed, bountiful, beautiful, and in bliss. You shall rule time and space, and your generations will be happy, healthy, and holy.
July 22, 1996

 

First of all, the Teacher is a dedicated person. He's a channel through which the knowledge flows. He or she is not the knowledge. It's the student who drinks it. The Teacher is not the knowledge, he's the giver of the knowledge. The student is the taker of the knowledge. Why should we mix our ego with it and change it?
April 26 1997

 

When you teach, you have only one privilege: Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo. That's it. After that, whatever you have remembered, seen and experienced, just share.
April 26 1997

 

Here the student is an obedient student and the Master is a commanding Master. If you do not learn with a commanding Master, tomorrow how can you become a Master and command? You'll be a yo-yo.
April 26 1997

 

A Teacher has no territory, a Teacher has no personality, a Teacher has no reality. His only reality is he uplifts, uplifts, uplifts; he keeps up and uplifts, keeps up and uplifts.
April 22, 1997

 

The first sign of a Teacher is that you are contained, you are content, and you are very continuously dependable. Your behavior reflects it.
 August 3, 1996

 

I am sitting higher than you because I have learned and you are learning. That's the only difference. You'll be as powerful tomorrow as I am today. Rather, the standard is that you should be ten times stronger than me. Then you can hold that flood of students.
April 21, 1997

 

Some things you are free to do; other things you are not free to do. We have kept the teachings of Kundalini Yoga pure from the time we know to the time we are. That's why when some people teach Kundalini Yoga it doesn't work. They teach philosophy, they teach chakras, sometimes they make up kriyas. It's a good time but it will not touch the core. It's as simple as that.
April 26 1997

Kundalini is the cycle, the circle, of the entire productivity of this Earth and all there is. In certain kriyas people say, " Should I close my eyes or not?" I never asked the question, so I'm not going to answer. It's up to you. They are all tested out from the last five thousand years and they work. There's no need to change or alter it.
April 26 1997

 

The student only has to do one thing. He comes and says, "Maestro, this is my problem." All you have to say is, "Guru Ram Das will solve it - now go home." If that person trusts, it shall be solved. If the person does not trust, it won't be solved.
April 25, 1997

 

Some Teachers do not want to look like a Teacher because they think they cannot reach students. To become a Teacher is an election? Is it an election? The student will come to you if you are a Teacher.
April 22, 1997

 

When you have a student, chisel the student, penetrate into the student and make the student better than you. Otherwise tomorrow is dead. Teach your student to become a Teacher. And make him understand again and again and again.
April 22, 1997

 

When you meet an idiot, become an equal idiot, and you come to that balanced level. Then start lifting. Then your wisdom will prevail. First go down like a forklift and then start bringing things up. The principle of the forklift must be understood by every Teacher.
August 3, 1996

 

You must not be bought or sold. No temptation, no planning, no scheme, no money, no gain, no loss, no threat can tempt you.
August 3, 1996

 

As a Teacher follow these three things:
Don’t let yourself down,
Don’t let anybody down,
And don’t participate in any let down.
August 3, 1996

 

Don’t worry about obnoxiousness, narrowness, abusiveness, negativity and neurosis of a student. Had he not been all that, why should he come to you? So please, when you become a Teacher, serve all, like the sun, which shines on all with light and warmth.
August 1, 1996

 

That’s the first faculty of a Teacher. He doesn’t relate to weakness. He relates to strength and tries to make the best of it. That is the Teacher’s pride. That is the Teacher’s orientation. That is the Teacher’s job
August 1, 1996

 

In the Raaj Yog, or what is commonly called Kundalini Yoga, in this Shakti Yoga, any teacher who changes the teachings for any reason, destroys himself or herself.
August 1, 1996

 

Scripturally they call it the Golden Chain of Teachers, passing it on from one to another, to another, to another, to another. They keep the standard, they keep the identity, they keep the personality, they keep the teachings.
August 1, 1996

 

A Teacher is an artist, with hammer and chisel. Whenever you meet a Teacher, God, there will be a spark. At the first introduction of you and your Teacher, you are going to find what is wrong with you. Mostly you will not like to hear that. You’ll skip that person. You are most welcome to skip it, but you do not know that you have lost that one chance which the soul was promised.
July 29, 1996

 

In the purity of the teachings lies the purity of the Teacher. There’s no other rule. You have the right to joke. You can add astrology, astronomy, whatever you want to talk about. But you know, at the time that you say, “Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo,” you are not an astrologer.
July 29, 1996

 

I don’t care whether people say I am a good Teacher or a bad Teacher. I’m a right Teacher or a wrong Teacher, as long as I know there are teachings and I am carrying and sharing them as they are.
July 29, 1996

 

A man who has an all-consuming ego will never become a Teacher because he will never become a student.
July 29, 1996

 

A Teacher is not judged by his popularity, his richness, his money, his knowledge, his essence. A Teacher is judged by his character.
July 29, 1996

 

A Teacher is a process to make saints, sages, givers, who are godly and graceful. A Teacher is a factory to manifest all this. A Teacher is not an egomaniac playboy.
July 29, 1996

 

You are a fountain of love, blessing, grace, bounty, beauty, and bliss, but you seek from your student public relations, admiration, appreciation. And then you proudly say that such-and-such model and such-and-such actor and such-and-such this comes to your classes. What do you teach, acting or reality?
July 23, 1996

 

Aasha: what you long for. Isht: your ultimate purpose. Upaasanaa: how you worship. Khann: what you eat. Paan: what you drink. Peheraan: what you wear. These things of yours should serve you uniquely to represent the power which comes through you. You cannot come one day as a clown, the next be very decorated, the third day a good-for-nothing, the fourth day hopeless, the fifth day beautiful. You shall not be in the presence of any person if you are not ready. And you shall be perfectly ready to serve the great teachings. That is the entitlement.
July 23, 1996

 

So, the first principle of a Teacher is, “I am not.” If you cannot practice shuniaa you cannot be a teacher of Kundalini Yoga. Shuniaa means zero. The moment you become zero, then all powers will prevail through you. The moment you become that, then everything radiates from you.
July 23, 1996

 

I would like to explain something to you. It is not a good thing to become a teacher of Kundalini Yoga and mix other things. When you practice Kundalini Yoga, you stay with it only. Remember that.
July 23, 1996

 

There’s a foolishness that Kundalini teachers do: they mix so many things—astrology, numerology, tarot cards, yum-yum, yo-yo, bananas-pananas-chananas. They are afraid to cover their head when they teach. They want to be very popular. If you want to sell yourself, sell in the open market, but do not take a profession as a Teacher. Don’t insult this institution. In the end you will be sorry and regret it. The teachings are never for sale, and a teacher never has a price. You are priceless, guaranteed by the One who made this Universe.
July 22, 1996

Come here to learn and go back learned, come back again to learn more, and go back to teach more—that is what we want. A Teacher is God's responsibility. You all love God, I know. But God loves Teachers—that I know, too.
7/20/96

The Teacher is always one. One is God, One is the Teacher. People will die but the Teacher will continue to live until Eternity.
8/1/96

 

The Teacher never goes away, it only changes body as people change a shirt, or Italy changes a government.
8/1/96
   

You took an oath, you took a job to serve the deep spirit of humanity. And if you took an oath to do that job, to serve humanity, who else will do it?
8/1/96
   

The Teacher's job is to keep on acting and the student's job is to keep on reacting, and not accepting. But once a student starts accepting, he's not a student anymore—he then becomes a Teacher.
8/1/96

 

A Teacher always knows what he can do to a person to make the best out of it. It is not the wood, it is what you carve out of it. Sometimes you have to give it time, sometimes you have tolerance, but ultimately sometimes you yell and scream, sometimes you chisel it out, sometimes this, sometimes that. But in the end you have to polish it to be something.
7/31/96

If God and the Teacher are standing together and the question is to whom to pay respect first, pay respect to the Teacher, because he gave you God and he can give God again. That is the faculty of a Teacher, described in everything.
7/31/96
   

Unfortunately we do not develop caliber in ourselves. Instead we develop personality, we develop identity, we develop knowledge, we have certifications. You may be certified as a Teacher but you may not have the caliber of a Teacher.
7/31/96
   

If you want to become a Teacher, become one now. It's useless when all the teeth are gone and the wolf says, 'I am a vegetarian.' It doesn't sound right.
7/31/96

 

That has to be the level of the teacher—who says what is right, not what is pleasing, wanting, or needing. You will never realize the truth. Speak what is. And please avoid in your life 'maybe,' 'I don't know,' 'perhaps.' There's no affirmation in your life. Life is an affirmation.
7/31/96

 

We are grateful to the Teacher—he gave us the teachings. That doesn't mean we worship him.
7/25/96

 

There is one concept you have to have or you can't be a Teacher: You don't work; God works for you. A human works, men and women work, an earthling works. Teachers don't work
7/25/96

 

Call yourself anything, be anything, label yourself with anything. But there is no identity for you, except your spiritual identity. There is no grace in you but to learn. There's no achievement other than to become learned. There's no power but to share what you have learned with all and everyone.
7/24/96

The first rule of Kundalini Yoga is that you do not show obnoxiously or politely, humbly or powerfully, any power of your own.
7/23/96

 

When you teach the teachings purely, you shall not be offended. Tested? Yes. Insulted? Yes. Betrayed? Yes. Spat at? Yes. But will you in the end, lose honor? No.
7/22/96

So there are some souls who come to you and you are the water tap. They press the button and bow and open their mouths and you, through the nectar of wisdom, give them the heavens. Beyond that you are nothing. If you think you are anything other than that our karma will catch up with you. But on the other hand, when the thirsty one has that in his mouth he'll say, “Oh God, wow!” In absolute ecstasy. Then man chants the mantra of ecstasy, 'Wahe Guru.' 
7/22/96  

A Teacher only sees the flow of God and is just a vehicle. Have you seen a water tap in a building where you press the button and water comes? You quench your thirst and you leave. Understand?
7/22/96

A Teacher gives you an experience; a preacher gives you philosophy. Without experience you can never become a Teacher, you become a parrot. There's a difference between a wise Teacher and a wise parrot Teacher. They 'quack quack' everything, they know everything, they can talk about everything, but there's never an experience.
7/22/96

I shall be gone. You shall continue. And when you'll be gone see that there is somebody to continue.
7/22/96

© The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan