A Guru in the Guest Room is a collection of writings by Vicki Woodyard about her fictional housemate, Swami Z. It includes a small cast of characters including Vicki herself. They attend satsangs, and even satsnag, with Swami Z.
Like the movie actor in The Purple Rose of Cairo who stepped out of the movie screen and into the real world, Swami Z steps out of the book:
"Vicki has a good sense of humor when she writes about me, but when she leaves the computer, she forgets how funny being human is. She mopes around with the best of them."
And although Swami Z has a cookie habit that "would sicken more than it would heal," this cookie dough that is A Guru In The Guest Room consists of humor, wisdom, and cool chips of reality. But, Vicki points out, "Cookie-making is a messy thing. I swear we have sugar rings in the bathtub."
Thanks to that messiness, there is lots of life in this book. Through it all, the eye of wisdom never blinks. Is that the eye painted onto Ruin, the stick pony? Some say Ruin is the true Guru in the book.
Who is the true Guru? What was Swami Z's response to Vicki's question, Who am I? Did Larry really sell Ruin on eBay? What does it mean to chew the scenery instead of the cookies?
Maybe it all comes down to what Vicki calls her direct path: "Loving the script and the characters." Speaking of which, one of the characters in this book is one of the greatest fictional Gurus in history. I'm just not saying who it is.