The guru is considered as the Supreme Lord Himself, because he gives the light of transcendental knowledge to his disciples. Consequently, for one who maintains the material conception that the guru is an ordinary human being, everything is frustrated. His attempts to progress in spiritual life, his Vedic studies and scriptural knowledge, his penance’s and austerities, and his worship of the Deity are all as useless as the bathing of an elephant.

Bhagavata Purana 7.15.26 (via beyondsamsara)

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