Imagine a scenario:
You are an enlightened being. You are compassionate and generous. You bear a strong suit of patience. You have cunning wisdom and insight and the strong aspiration to bring benefit to all beings. You effortlessly fulfill the aims of others, simultaneously fulfilling your own aims.
All other beings are unenlightened. You live in a world in which everyone is suffering. Everyone else doesn't understand the true nature of reality or their own nature. Your job is to tirelessly try to liberate them from their own confusion. You are the only one who has the vision and wisdom necessary to carry out that task.
Imagine another scenario:
You are unenlightened. You know your own suffering. Anger, attachment, frustration and delusion follow you like a shadow. You try to be generous, but end up holding back. You try to be patient, but end up blowing a fuse. You have insight, sure, but there are many days you just don't know what to do.
Everyone else is enlightened. Everyone else is trying to wake you up. Everyone is your teacher, a spiritual friend or a guide on the road. Every interaction is an opportunity, every trial is part of the path. Everyone is in on the game. You are the last to wake up.
Both of these scenarios are unrealistic, but which one do you think would lead to quicker progress on the path?
The student-teacher relationship is not well understood in the west. There is a lot of cultural baggage and misunderstanding that needs to be cleared up. There is a lot of gross misconduct and deceit that takes place. You should properly analyze the teacher and the teachings. Once you do though, you should try to generate pure vision in regards to the teacher.
It may not be possible to see all beings as enlightened, to appreciate them all as guides on the path. That would be a stretch. But if we could see one person as enlightened and really be impacted by their teachings, then maybe we would be more receptive to other forms of teachers and teachings as well.
Start with one. One is the minimum. Be willing to be receptive, to generate reverence and devotion, to respect and to serve one being. If you can do it with one, more will appear.
Who knows, maybe you are the last one to wake up.