Animals Don’t Need Gurus

Let me dispel a notion I know some are thinking. “Oh, Richard found out some things that worked and now he wants to be a ‘Diet & Exercise Guru’ and cash in.”

The truth is that I’m doing fine with everything on my plate already. I love the new direction of this blog and it would be child’s play for me to churn out a half-dozen substantive posts per day. I love it because it’s completely devoid of bullshit, I know it’s genuine, and I don’t have to spin or exaggerate anything in the slightest. It works. It’s fun. You’ll love yourself for doing it, won’t be able to imagine how you could have lived any other way for so long, and it will be with you forever. That said, taking my experience (not access to the blog, or its quality) commercial represents a significant challenge, and I’m always up for them.

When it’s something I’m passionate about as I am with this, it’s nearly irresistible.

But then there’s that Guru factor, and I just hate that. I loath Gurus, and you should too. You know what I think a Guru is? It’s someone who sells you tantalizing, feel good, sound good lies or incomplete information that rarely if ever works for anyone as advertised. When it doesn’t work for most (i.e., it works for some, just like stopped clocks are right twice per day) there’s always the subtle implication that you’re just not applying the info right. But don’t worry. The next product speaks exactly to those problems. Repeat. Over and over.

Frankly: I think far too much of myself and am far too selfish to ever do that to you or to me — and to my own sense of who I am. Do you understand? It’s good old fashion self-esteem and self-respect. Why would I ever want to cheat myself out of what I already posses? For money? There isn’t enough money.

Are there going to be follow on and ancillary products? Youbetcha; if I do this. For whom? Those for whom the basic information worked, and who want more in-depth treatment in specific areas. I get questions (from guys, mostly) about how to cook, for example. Well, a basic book is going to have a basic treatment. But how about a 3-day cooking boot camp where we have kitchens full of great Real Food and we cook up stuff on the fly — no recipes? It could be done on the web, too. Exercise. Some people don’t want to lift weights, or don’t have access to a gym. What if I were to assemble great information from a number of different sources about different options in working out? There are dozens of possibilities, and they would only apply to people actually seeing results.

The objective is to free your inner animal, and animals don’t need gurus. Animals are their own gurus, their own authorities. They know everything there is to know about their own physiology, what activities they can and can’t do, when to eat, when to hunt, and when to guiltlessly take a nap. They spend no time whatsoever seeking out a Guru. Their mom and playmates were their teachers, and then they went off, a Guru in their own right, wholly able to discover and experience the full complement of their lives. Animals live their lives to the utmost. Every time. Every minute.

If I do this, I’ll do it right. And if I do it right, those who come along for the ride will be their own Gurus, able finally to operate 100% on their own authority, never needing the proclamations, assertions, or admonitions of the self appointed-anointed.

If I’m doing my job, then each of you will be able to go out and make your own discoveries. And maybe, some of you might even write a book.

Do you think I can help others discover how to Free the Animal? Do you think I can’t? Either way, I’d love to know what you think. It’s important. So please go right away and take the survey, if you haven’t already. Or, go directly. If you’ve already graced me with your valued judgment, I thank you.

Since Covid killed my Cabo San Lucas vacation-rental business in 2021, this is my day job. I can't do it without you. Memberships are $10 monthly, $20 quarterly, or $65 annually. Two premium coffees per month. Every membership helps finance this work I do, and if you like what I do, please chip in. No grandiose pitches.


  1. Naomi on September 14, 2008 at 12:53

    Hello Richard,

    I was catching up reading your posts today, and I just wanted to say that my respect for you just keeps growing. This post especially makes me just nod my head in agreement and joy in reading it.

    Whatever you decide to do with your survey outcome, I wish you all the best with it. I do think in this modern time when everyone is always busy, it can be very beneficial for people to just offer some handholds, a place to start.

  2. Richard Nikoley on September 15, 2008 at 07:55


    That's a wonderful complement. Thank you.

    And for all the rest of you, Naomi's blog, My Paleo Kitchen, is a great source for not only what to eat, but how to cook.

  3. elcunto on September 15, 2009 at 21:22

    Preach it brother

  4. Nick Ryan on June 28, 2010 at 15:17

    Refreshing. Just found your blog today and I dig it. If more people took the time to think for themselves and follow their instincts rather than wait (and pay big money) for somebody to spoon feed them miracles, we’d have a lot less silly bullshit dragging the rest of us down. I will share this with anyone I think might be interested. Best wishes in your endeavors.


  5. Skeptic on October 4, 2010 at 14:56

    It’s fine to “think for yourself” but learning includes “from others experience.” No one was born with complete knowledge based wholly and solely on “just their own experience.” Therefore, if your experience doesn’t jive with someone else’s experience, you can’t say unequivocally that their experience is wrong and yours is right. I note in your “About” page you have no interest in “religious matters,” obviously based on your experience in college (and growing up, too, I guess). Religion, as practiced today, is, for the most part, the blind leading the blind. But plenty of people throughout history have sought and had “mystical” experiences of other worlds or planes of existence, which, according to them will be more real than this life once experienced.

    I know. You probably think it is delusional. But since you won’t be investigating it in any real open-minded or scientific manner (read trying techniques that others report to lead to such experiences) don’t denounce ALL religious activities as myth. I can tell you (as can some who have had what are called Near Death Experiences, there is a reality beyond the senses that can be experienced before death — BUT usually you DO have to seek it.

    I can appreciate the frankness of your blogs. But don’t dismiss other people’s experiences that seem to lead to different conclusions that yours. Your verbiage can come across as a dictatorial pronouncement of absolute truth. When it does, it can be just as much BS as you deride. Keep and open mind. Unless you do absolute knowledge, it will allow for new information to creep in. :)

    • Skeptic on October 4, 2010 at 15:05

      Sorry for all the misspells. When you’re rushing (post from work) this tends to happen.

      Errata: I can appreciate the frankness of your blogs. But don’t dismiss other people’s experiences that seem to lead to different conclusions than yours. Your verbiage can come across as a dictatorial pronouncement of absolute truth. When it does, it can be just as much BS as you deride. Any “truths” you espouse will stand on their own merits. Keep an open mind. Unless you do have absolute knowledge, it (an open mind) will allow for new information to creep in.

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