30 years ago, I was introduced to Transcendental Méditation (Maharishi Mahesh Yogi) and developped interest for The Bhagavad Gita an Upanishads. After several months of steady practice, I quitted Transcendetal Méditation as it did not work for me, and so my interest for Indian philisophy... Now I am more attracted by buddhism, not as a religion but as philisophy and meditation technics. So I am sometime reading translations of sutras relating the teaching of the Buddha.A friend of mine spent several stays in ashrams in India. She was a doctor in classical medicine but had specialized in various alternatives - Indian and Chinese (TCM). She introduced me to this ancient culture of the Indian scriptures. For the last fifteen years I've been reading the texts of the "eternal wisdom" (philosophia perennis) and I'm really fascinated with the depth of these texts, both the scientific and the spiritual ones. The Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads and Puranas have had a great impact on western philosophers and scientists of the 19th and 20th century (Goethe, Schopenhauer, Hegel, Thoreau, Huxley, Einstein to name but a few).
As to the Sadhus and Gurus who take money there is a clear agreement: an enlightened person would never accept money for his services (even the Dalai Lama is very outspoken about this).