A guru is a relalized soul, one who attained perfection. A realized soul surpasses this world, even higher worlds, the gods' world and he is anchored in the Ultimate Reality. He's body still belongs to this world, and that can be killed if he chooses so. He is wearing the body as a cloth.
I never met such person in my life. But that does not mean they not exist, or I would not follow him if I met him. So the question is not the need for such person in your sadhana, but perhaps our ability to assess his presence.
Also the question migh be: do you believe at all in spiritual worlds, higher powers, gods, angels and so on (use your culture's terms here, be it kamis, boddhisattwas, anything), do you beleive if there is something more that what the senses see ? Do you beleive that there is even a higher thing than those ? I only had one single extrasensorial event in my life, but that is enough for me to put these questions away, and believe. Faith is what we have until we see it ourselves, with our own soul. Opening the chakras is opening our spiritual eyes. Having that single experience, I long for knowledge. I know I am blind and imperfect. I did learn the hard way that nothing lasts. Maybe I have grown bitter, too, because I am still attached to the things I know cannot last forever.
So this is not just a talk for me. What I share here, be it right or wrong ( and I often find that I was wrong in my thoughts) is very important to me, perhaps the most important thing in my life.
I love my wife and baby girl very much, and I would give my life for them. But that does not change the fact that I would follow my guru/master if I met him. This is hard to accept, and some of you probaly will say I am a monster, and how can such bigottry exist today.
Be sure, I would not make such sacrifice easily. (probably it would be the greatest I am capable of) I would test him the best I can do. I would provoke him, dare him, to show he is the one.
I believe that Jesus was a guru or master. And he said, the one who leaves his parents, wife, children for me, will get a hundred times more in the kingdom of heaven.
How many people leave their wife and children for somtehing as illusory that romantic love ? A thing that we all know that does not last ? That it lasts for a few years than it gives place to a deeper love ... and still how deep is that love in people who give that up for the new high gave to them by a new relationship ?
But they are not monsters or bigotts, they're just human. We forgive what we understand and we don't forgive what we don't. That's why the life of saints, prophets or the true, is a tragic one. That' why there is such a gruesome statement in John's Apocalipse about the number of the true ones who must fell before Christs second coming.
Perhaps all these sound to catholic for this place. Some of you fled here because the church disappointed you, or it just wasn't able to wake your interest. I don't ask you to be catholics or christians. Be an atheist if that what feels true for you. God is incomprehensible, perhaps an atheist is closer to Him than one who tries to depict Him. Be a hindu, or budhist, I don't care. What I believe that the laws of morality are one for all human kind. I believe that we will find if we seek, so self effort is not useless. But I also believe that we can be helped, taught.
What a beautiful and short is the commandment: Love thy fellow as yourself. It is in fact what yogins say by ahimsa. This is one of the two greatest commandments. The other is love thy God by all your heart, soul and mind. (Not exact quotations because I am not reading the Bible in english)
A yogi might say, be true to yourself 'til the end. Both of these lead to the same, just the directions where they come from differ.
So we are different in where we come from. As different types of food with the same nutrients just in different percentage, are best for different body types, perhaps the same knowledge but in different clothes is more accessable for different cultures' sons and daughters.
But in essence they are all the same. I like what Yogiraj Siddhanath says:
Humanity is ones only religion, breath is ones only prayer, and consciousness is ones only God.
But that does not mean we must throw out our heritage. We must find what's good in it, and enliven it by what's the same for all of us.