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Concept Of Manmukh/Gurmukh. Is There A Freewill In Sikhism?

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by Harry Haller, Jul 25, 2016.

  1. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    If we have free will then what is the difference between manmukh and gurmukh?
     
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  3. dalvindersingh grewal

    dalvindersingh grewal India
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    If you follow your mind which is attached to the world you are a manmukh; if you follow the guide whom you call satguru you are a Gurmukh. Manmukh and gurmukh are very well defined by Guru Nanak while having discussions with Siddhas as recorded in Siddh Gosht.
     
  4. Sikhilove

    Sikhilove United Kingdom
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    Very True

    Maya Is the mind and is the Illusion. When u silence the mind, she ceases to speak and you realise the Truth and apply the Satgurus teachings.
     
    #3 Sikhilove, Jul 26, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2016
  5. Original

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    My dearest H

    Freewill is an interesting and never-ending tale of the human condition, why confine it to kaursingh only [ Title]? Allow Jack n Jill, Bob n Bill and the rest to have a bash at what is definitely the most prized of them all, philosophical treaties - Freewill v Determinism ! Expect no ready made answers - this is a rollercoaster, go with the flow kinda attitude required with loads n loads of open-mindedness ! I studied this in my undergraduate days, nothing much has changed in principle, but lot to report in light of science n technology.

    Speak soon - gdnyte !
     
  6. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    Actually my first quote is flawed, it should read,


    If we do NOT have free will then what is the difference between manmukh and gurmukh?

    but first baby steps, can we agree on whether there is free will in Sikhism, or is everything as they say, already written, if we do have free will, then should we, as some say, just leave everything to 'him', so to kick off, do we have full free will.
     
  7. Original

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    Good morning Sir,

    As I pointed out above, confining freewill to Sikhism alone will rob it of its ancenstral roots, particularly the period in antiquity. Perhaps a general to the particular approach might be an appropriate way of homing in on Sikhism only. And, quite rightly since it's a human condition that everyone should be allowed to have a say, regardless of orientation or overriding considerations - just my opinion.

    On the whole, moral philosophy presupposes that humans have a sphere of freewill within which human action can operate. This is because without freewill there can be no intelligible notion of responsibility. If we are not considered responsible for our actions then it makes little sense to say we acted rightly or wrongly. What sense does a moral judgment have if we have no choice in the action we have taken ?

    Moral philosophers treat the subject matter quite eloquently and as a result, subscribe to the following formula:

    Freewill>Choice>Responsibility>Moral Culpability

    As regards Sikhism there is what we call the "Divine Will" [Hukam], which overrides human will and is thus categorised as, manmukh n gurmukh. From an ideological viewpoint it is the gurmukh who is considered to have and exercise "self-control" [freewill] and live freely in what otherwise is a deterministic universe. Quantum mechanics supports this view in line with the "uncertainty principle".

    More another time - time for training ! But yes, definitely worth beefing up here on freewill v deterministism.

    Good day !
     
  8. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    So a manmukh is one who is not following the divine will through no choice of his/her own?
    a Gursikh, also, is one who is following the divine will, again through no choice,

    I think the Christians call this being called, do you think the same applies here?
     
  9. Sikhilove

    Sikhilove United Kingdom
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    If you realise that everything works to the law of Karma, you'll understand Hukam.

    We have the free will to create better karams for ourselves, but karam must always be paid whether its in this lifetime or ten lifetimes from now.
     
  10. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    What if like me, you believe that death is death? You have mentioned karma and also intimated you understand Hukam, this is good, as I still do not understand Hukam, I will open another thread on the topic so we can debate it
     
  11. Original

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    I think it is imperative to have consistency and precision with the words we use in order to understand one another. If we are to understand the subject to hand, then we have to mean the same by the words we use. For example, a manmukh by definition is one without a guru and gurmukh is one with a guru. This refers to the ability to take on the conceptual world-view of Sikhism's theoretical standpoint. The conceptual framework within which Sikhism's theoretical thinking is defined has distinctive and meaningful vocabulary, knowledge of which is paramount.

    The question of freewill in the instant case must on all counts be entertained from within a Sikh perspective. Sikh as a religion has been institutionalised over the centuries and accordingly, has a system of beliefs n values, one of which is gurmukh n manmukh. To further the discussion and develop a thorough understanding, one need to accept the idea of a Supreme Being. The supreme being argument for n against ought to be settled before any crediable inferences or explanations are provided by way of conceptualisation. One argument in favour of a Supreme Being advanced is that the world appears to be structured and functional in such a way that it is much like a clockwork. And, if that'd be true then it follows that the mechanics of a watch can be best explained in terms of it having been made by a designer. So by analogy, the workings and the mechanics of the universe must too have an almighty designer, which we call God.

    To understand the concept of manmukh n gurmukh we need to first, establish whether there is a Supreme Being or not ?

    Take care -
     
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    #10 Original, Jul 28, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2016
  12. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    Is the question whether a supreme being exists, or whether a supreme being designed the universe?
    I acknowledge a supreme being, an energy if you will, that has a passive interest in the world, almost observing, with no interference, so I would take it that this view needs to be resolved before we move on,
     
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  13. Tejwant Singh

    Tejwant Singh United States
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    Freewill.Manmukh.Gurmukh.

    Harry ji,

    Guru Fateh.

    Interesting gumbo to say the least.

    Freewill: As per Christianity; a Christian has a freewill. However, freewill punches the omnipotence in the gut of the omnipotent Abrahamic God. Therefore it becomes nonsensical babble because if the deity is omnipotent then the followers are all powerless, hence no freewill. All belief systems have these kinds of contradictions.

    This is the reason Sikhi does not require any Belief System nor any Supreme Being as Believed by Original ji, because Ik Ong Kaar Is.

    As far as freewill in Sikhi is concerned, everyone is free to do anything provided he/she is ready to face the consequences, positive and/or negative.

    Many people confuse Freewill with Hukum. Freewill sprouts out of Me-ism whereas Hukum is borne out of One-ism.

    Munmukh, Gurmukh.

    As we are fallible beings, we are bound to make mistakes till our last breath because making mistakes is what a Sikh maketh.

    Based on this, Munmukh and Gurmukh are not the ultimate levels of a person but rather it is a hopscotch of life, pathways to our journey. We all keep on hopscotching between making mistakes and learning from them as Sikhs because we know the traits of each as per SGGS,our only Guru.

    So we are all Munmukhs and Gurmukhs at many forks of our Sikhi journey..
     
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    #12 Tejwant Singh, Jul 29, 2016
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  14. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    Tejwantji,

    Thank you for your view, which on the whole, I happen to agree with, however, no one can really know truly what is the right view, all we can do is use logic, pragmatism and wisdom to try and get our best shot at the truth, we will probably never know whether we are right or wrong, but at least a summing that makes sense and is free from contradiction is a start.

    If we are to for one second focus not on the design of the world but rather the general day to day workings of the world, to the many people praying for a miracle, to the many with full faith that god will help them, assist them, make their wishes come true, is god listening? will god do something? all opinions and thoughts from the other camp welcome please
     
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  15. Original

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    The fact that you've acknowledged the existence of a supreme being [SB], technically rules out the argument for or against God's [wider meaning] existence. Furthermore, you then go on to ascribe to it some functional qualities, namely, passive interest,..observant, non-interfering, which by definition brings it out of a mere existence and into a physical being that has the potential to be anything and everything. Nanak calls him creator [karta purakh], would you hold against me if I was to call him a designer ?
     
  16. Sikhilove

    Sikhilove United Kingdom
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    If you believe that death is death, then you're not following the Satguru as theyve taught us about reincarnation.. Either you love and follow the Guru or u dont
     
  17. Sikhilove

    Sikhilove United Kingdom
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    If you believe that death is death, then you're not following the Satguru as theyve taught us about reincarnation.. Either you love and follow the Guru or u don't..
     
  18. Tejwant Singh

    Tejwant Singh United States
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    Harry ji,

    Guru Fateh.

    Noun 1.
    [​IMG]
    Supreme Being - the supernatural being conceived as the perfect and omnipotent and omniscientoriginator and ruler of the universe; the object of worship in monotheistic religions
    God

    Supreme Being

    The Supreme being, if there is such thing in Sikhi as some claim here, then it is a Being, a Deity.
     
  19. Original

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    Pyari sad sangat...

    Purely for cooperative pusuit and further the dicussion at hand, we don't have to knuckle down to English defintions, we can modify them and perhaps develop new ones if you like, ones that reflect and are quasi to perfect in expressing and holding true Sikh tenets, values and beliefs to arrive at, as it were, at the summit of the intellectual realm.

    For example, the word cousin of the English vocab has no equivalent in the Indian language. We tend to call massi's boy phaji, chacha's son phaji and so on, who's to say we have to use the word Deity to reflect a God with 8 arms and 9 nostrils and what not. No, not all. Sikh ideology and practice is evolving, we can make it better, hence, thal vich tin vastu...sat [truth], santokh [contentment], vichar [contemplation or thinking]. And, the prime reason Waheguru has brought us together to move forward or backward, in truth, is to attach to the "shabd" of the Sikh faith.

    Enjoy the day !
     
  20. Tejwant Singh

    Tejwant Singh United States
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    Pyari Sadh Sangat,

    Guru Fateh.

    Original ji writes:

    I agree with Original ji's statement that
    .

    And we have been doing that. Here is one example. Now we all call Gurdwara rather than Sikh Temple as we used to and it has become the part of our English lexicon in such a way that ex PM of the UK,Cameron and of Canada PM Trudeau call Gurdwara rather than Sikh Temple whenever they talk about the Sikh house of worship. As a result, many in the Police forces around the country have also started calling it Gurdwara.

    Secondly and more importantly, people are enunciating the word Sikh as it is written not Seekh as they used to but many still do which is bound to change with time provided we stop calling ourselves Seekhs.

    This is the way we bring changes to introduce Sikhi so it can be understood by the mainstream by calling a spade a spade, so to speak. It is our responsibility to do that.

    Original ji further writes:

    Here Original ji is mixing apples with mangoes or shall I say, Jamuns! The first paragraph has nothing to do with the second. Those of you who might not know, Original ji is a barrister in the UK and he often talks here on SPN, about his wonderful work in the favour of human rights as a lawyer which is commendable.

    The word cousin is not the same in English as it is Punjabi because of the cultural reasons which are quite unique to the Indic cultures, it has nothing to do with the linguistic part as Original ji is trying to claim.

    Following are some more examples from our culture where we have different names for Uncles/Aunts/Brothers in law etc. etc.

    Chacha is respected less than Taya-his older brother. The same goes for their respective wives. Sala, the bride's brother is also used in a derogatory manner in everyday Punjabi speech as opposed to Jeeja, sister's husband, who is respected and at times revered because of the culture, not because of the language. One can go on and on but I am sure the astute readers of SPN get the gist.

    I am sure Original ji is aware of the Indic and Latin languages. Many historians claim that Latin is derived from Sanskrit. I do not know if that is true or not but one thing I am certain about is that the Verb conjugations, Adjectives with genders and plural forms are not only similar but identical in both languages.

    English is totally a different animal with amalgamation of many languages including the Indian languages like Pajamas, Verandah, Jodhpurs, Chakars; the latter two are used in horse polo, among many more.Hence, it is easier for us to introduce Sikhi vocabulary in English.

    One thing we can not do is change the meaning of a word in English for Sikhi in order to be part of mainstream because they do not mean the same thing. The particular words being discussed are Deity and Supreme Being.

    Original ji has correctly defined a deity with a question
    Well Original ji, thanks for defining deity so accurately. He/She is a god or goddess in this example of yours. This also defines the Supreme Being, both of which have nothing to do with Sikhi. If you claim they do, then please post full shabads from SGGS with your understanding so we can all learn from that.

    So, we do not have to use the terminology that does not define Sikhi but makes it rather more nebulous which is not our objective. Our objective as Sikhs is to show people the difference between Sikhi and other religions and why the differences/distinctions are important to grasp the value system of Sikhi enshrined in the SGGS,our only Guru. The main differences are:

    No Hell, no Heaven.
    No Reincarnation.
    No Deity.
    No Super Being.
    No Fasting.
    No Mechanical rituals.
    No Pilgrimages. And many more.

    These differences have to be demonstrated to others for the understanding of Sikhi and I have been fortunate in that aspect as a board member of the Interfaith Council of Southern Nevada which gives me a doorway to share Sikhi values with others.

    I would like Original ji and others to check my PowerPoint presentation to the Homeland Security named "To Protect and Serve". In the beginning only the PP was posted when the interaction between myself, Original ji and others took place in the following thread. After some time the video was also added which I do not know Original ji has watched it or not. My presentation is on YouTube which was videoed by my son Trimaan on iphones and then put together by him as we were not allowed to videotape in a professional manner because of many members of the audience who were not allowed to be shown due to the sensitive nature.

    The following thread has both. Please share your comments.

    Sikhi(sm) - A Presentation by Tejwant Singh Malik

    Over to the Blind Faith Believers & Co.

    Tejwant Singh
     
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    #19 Tejwant Singh, Aug 1, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2016
  21. Original

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    Respected Tejwant Singh

    I strongly suggest you re-read what I've written, particularly the verb in the passive voice at the beginning of the sentence.This is where the object [cooperative pursuit] is acted upon by the subject [English definitions]. And was in fact, an invitation to treat the subject under discussion following the 'cooperative inquiry' guidelines, where the emphasis is on research and develop "with" sangat rather than "on" sangat. To talk about Original Ji and not about definitions, the dialectical framework within which cooperative inquiry is found, is not only derogated from, but destroyed. And, the irony is not in the ignorance but rather in the approval by the service provider [Admin Singh] of the potential violation of its constitutional terms of engagement, that is:

    4. Prudence: Respond to the topic in hand, not the persons, who posted it.

    As a result, I'm obliged to remind us all of the ethical considerations inherent in formal communication with which we must all accord and conform.

    And also if I may add, the word COUSIN [noun] has no equivlent a noun in the Punjabi dialect, adjectives yes, but no noun which springs to mind. My reference in the post above was to show how Sanskrit can be very general and fluid to accommodate terms such as a Deity to mean a lot more than what is defined in English Dictionaries. And the cooperative inquiry was to that end to construct and develop a wider definition of Nanak's Creator Being [karta purakh], encapsulating as it were, the general from the particular. On that note I invite the honourable sangat to debate and discuss so that a wider definition is found with which there is general consensus.

    Good day !
     

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