Guru or truth is seeked and found when a person is seeking something beyond material realm like Buddha(than King Siddhartha) was dissatisfied with his wealth, kingship, luxuries etc., and seeking something beyond or Swami Vivekananda (then Narendra) searched for someone who had actually seen God in reality rather than simply accepting God's existence blindly.
Grace of Guru explained by Ramana Maharshi
D. How is the Guru found?
M. God, who is immanent, in His grace takes pity on the loving devotee
and manifests Himself according to the devotee’s development. The
devotee thinks that He is a man and expects a relationship as between
two physical bodies. But the Guru, who is God or the Self incarnate,
works from within, helps the man to see the error of his ways and
guides him in the right path until he realizes the Self within.
D. What should the devotee do then?
M. He has only to act up to the words of the Master and work within.
The Master is both ‘within’ and ‘without’, so He creates conditions to
drive you inward and at the same time prepares the ‘interior’ to drag
you to the Centre. Thus He gives a push from ‘without’ and exerts a
pull from ‘within’, so that you may be fixed at the Centre.
D. What is guru’s grace? How does it lead to Self-realization?
M. Guru is the Self…. Sometimes in his life a man becomes dissatisfied
with it, and, not content with what he has, he seeks the satisfaction
of his desires, through prayer to God etc. His mind is gradually
purified until he longs to know God, more to obtain His grace than to
satisfy his worldly desires. Then, God’s grace begins to manifest. God
takes the form of a guru and appears to the devotee, teaches him the
Truth and, moreover, purifies his mind by association. The devotee’s
mind gains strength and is then able to turn inward. By meditation it
is further purified and it remains still without the least ripple.
That calm expanse is the Self.
The Guru is both ‘external’ and ‘internal’. From the ‘exterior’ he
gives a push to the mind to turn inward; from the ‘interior’ He pulls
the mind towards the Self and helps in the quieting of the mind. That
is guru’s grace. There is no difference between God, Guru and the
You think that the world can be conquered by your own efforts. When
you are frustrated externally and are driven inwards, you feel ‘Oh!
There is a Power higher than man!’
The ego is like a very powerful elephant which cannot be brought under
control by any less powerful than a lion, which, in this instance, is
no other than the Guru, Whose very look makes the elephant-like ego
tremble and die.
You will know in due course that your glory lies where you cease to
exist. In order to gain that State, you should surrender yourself.
Then the Master sees that you are in a fit state to receive guidance,
and He guides you.
D. How can I obtain Grace?
M. Grace is the Self.That also is not to be acquired: you only need
to know that it exists.The sun is brightness only. It does not see darkness.
Yet you speak of
darkness fleeing on the sun’s approach. So also the devotee’s
ignorance, like the phantom of darkness vanishes at the look of the
Guru. You are surrounded by sunlight; yet if you would see the sun,
you must turn in its direction and look at it. So also Grace is found
by the proper approach you make, though it is here and now.
However, in Kaliyuga many fake gurus operate, with mere saffron robes and external symbols and to deceive and rob majority spiritually blind masses who identify spirituality with mere visible religious symbols or word jugglery and are seeking wealth, material things and occult powers in reality rather than enlightenment or Moksha from such impostors. Because spiritually devolved will ask for material things but not God/wisdom despite God or Guru appearing in front of him.
Arjuna and Duryodhana seeking help from Krishna
Despair and Hope in Age of Kaliyuga
(2) Among the people of the age of Kali all one attains by good birth,
behavior and qualities will be wealth while material power will be the
only factor determining what is just and reasonable. (3) Relations
between men and women will be based upon sensual pleasure, business
will be ruled by deceit, masculinity and femininity are there for
sexual attraction and a sacred thread will suffice to be considered
learned. (4) External marks only determine someone's spiritual status
and constitute the basis for mutual exchanges, because of a lack of
funds one is less credible and scholarship consists of word jugglery.
For any serious Sadhaka, the creation itself is Guru, thats why Avadhutas and Dattatreya have 24 gurus of the nature as explained by Krishna in Uddhava Gita.