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Sikhi Guru Nanak's Methodology Of Finding Truth

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by dalvindersingh grewal, Jan 1, 2016.

  1. dalvindersingh grewal

    dalvindersingh grewal India
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    Writer Historian SPNer Contributor

    Jan 3, 2010
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    Guru Nanak's Methodology of Finding Truth

    Col Dalvinder Singh Grewal

    Concept of Ultimate Truth

    The ultimate truth is the one that is permanent and does not change. It is 'the Lord alone that is permanent and unchangeable'. Hence the Lord is the ultimate truth and nothing else[1]. …True is the Lord, true His Name.[2], [3] He was True in the prime, true in the beginning of ages, true He is even now and true he shall ever be.[4]

    Guru Nanak's choice of 1 is unmistakable indication of his characterization of the highest reality as positive presence and affirmation, not negation. The world emanates from the positive essence; as such it is a real world, and not merely an illusion. The world in which the Providence is imminent, cannot be pure falsehood. Thus, the living, all-extensive, all-comprehensive reality; which is unitary yet multi-faceted, is the object of estimation in the mool mantra. In the very next symbol of sat (i), Guru Nanak has actually described God as the real. It is the basic substance of all the modes of existence; it is the reality of the things and forms of the world. The first characterisation is the reality that starts with Satnam: the Eternal Holy Truth.

    Guru Nanak describes this further, "All the universes and its parts and the galaxy systems are all real. All the light and the figures created by Him are real. All His doing and deliberations are true. His order and His court are also all real. Whatever His Will and whatever His utterances are all true. True is His Grace and true is His sign. Lacs and crores call Him the True. All the power and might is in Him. True is His praise and true is His commendation. All His nature is True. They too are true who remember Him. Only those who are caught in the circle of life and death, are the falsest of the false."[5]

    Guru Nanak had the vision of a power expressing itself as the Being, immanent in the world-order. Now, he is considering this power as the real, the focus of all, that is, the ultimate object of all pursuit of knowledge. Reality is not a matter for reason; it comes by revelation of God through nadar or Grace and by anubhava or mystical experience. Says Guru Nanak, "He is not accessible through intellect, or through mere scholarship or cleverness at argument. He is met when he pleases, through devotion."[6] The true reality is thus not in the falsehood of life and death but in the continuity of entire universe.[7]

    Truth is taken to be essence of God, which accords well with our age of the scientific quest.[8]Truth is the remedy of all; only truth can wash away our sins.[9] Falsehood exhausts itself; only Truth prevails in the end.[10]Truth never gets old.[11] That is being true, when the True One is in the heart; when the filth of falsehood departs, and the life is made clean. That is being true, when man fixes his love on truth, and finds pleasure in hearing of the Name; and finds himself liberated. When one receives true instructions, understands a mercy to living things, and performs some acts of charity, he is true. He is true when he resides at the sacred font of spirit. Consulting the true Guru, he abides in peace [12]and the True Lord puts an end to man's transmigration. [13]

    Lord Krishna said in Bhagwad Gita, "Of thousands of men some rare soul strives to realize Me (the Lord); of those striving Yogis, again, some rare one know Me (the Lord in reality."[14] Only a few spiritual guides and Gurus like Lord Krishna, Mahatma Buddha, Christ, Mohammed or Guru Nanak have excelled in attaining pra knowledge. Though all these enlightened ones have given certain descriptions about the Lord and His universe, but they have not recorded their experiences in their own hand (except Guru Nanak) and are recorded by others after hearing from some others hence these are here-say record i.e., recorded by others. Guru Nanak's descriptions in scriptures are the most authentic because these were recorded in pothis in his own words. These are the latest (just around 500 years old) and are written just before the modern science came into existence. These are most relevant, vivid and detailed. Thus these details can go a long way to guide the present and future generation of scientists and spiritual technologists. Guru Nanak had obtained pra gyan through self-realisation and inter-linking clean body and soul to find out the truth.

    According to Guru Nanak, the concept of the universe is the creation and perception of our mind. When there is a consciousness the phenomenal universe is a reality; when the consciousness is non-existent, the universe ceases to exist. The universe exists exactly as the state of our mind may dictate. A happy mind regards all universe as a place of peace and good cheer whereas a sick and disturbed mind finds the world a den of discomfort and disease. In either state it is our mind that determines the nature of our existence. Thus good or bad, happiness or sorrow depend on the conscious state of our mind. As the mind perceives, so does man create his own cosmos. The mind thus has a choice to create perceptions of good or bad or of happiness and sorrow. If our mind discards the illusionary and transitory notions and follows the spirit and transform spiritually guided beliefs into actions, he will attain infinite happiness and freedom from sickness, sin and suffering.

    The thought process centered in our mind is most powerful vehicle. The perceived universe being a product of our thought-process is thus unreal, a dream characterized as an 'airy mountain of smoke'. Yet this basic truth is exceedingly hard to believe-by our earth bound intellect. Those schooled in the art of contemplation and meditation alone can understand the mystery. The practitioner of meditation is capable of seeing the subtle aspects of creation- to an extent where creation itself dissolves into the thought of nothingness. The more he dissociates from his sensory perceptions of phenomenal creation, the closer he gets to the true nature of existence.

    In as much as all worldly creation arises from powerful thought-waves that acquire substance from our sensory perceptions, ignorance of the basic principle becomes the root cause of mental tension and physical sickness. Conversely, in so far as our mind understands the principles of spiritual sciences, our life in this universe acquires the spirit of true happiness. By practicing meditation, the attributes of God begin to unfold and envelop the seeker, who gradually starts acquiring those attributes and becomes god-like, shedding all shortcomings that are ungodly and acquiring the goodness that is inherent in the divine being. The axiom 'as you think so you become' applies and the seeker starts substantiating in real life every good thought he contemplates.

    As at any one time, our mind can process only one thought, the practioner of naam simran, begins to dwell in godly thoughts- the more he meditates on God's name, the greater is his preoccupation with goodness; all negative thoughts are thus left our of his mind. Thus virtuous thoufht process becomes creative and over a period of time, the mind acquires the power to fulfill whatever it desires. But since the meditation is focussed only in Godly attributes, all manifestations and episodes in his life have a divine quality of truth, beauty and joy.

    Guru Nanak defined Satya or Sach as Satinam i.e., only Truth is the Name of the Lord. He described the Lord as the Prime Truth who has been True beyond ages He has been the only truth and will continue to be so.[15]He considered Him alone as permanent and everything else as perishable' binsanhar' The True Lord is the creator and destroyer of the entire universe[16]. He said," That Lord is ever true. He is true and true is His Name. He is true and beautiful and His mind is joyful ever (sat-chit-anand).[17] He, the True Lord alone is true and none else. He who created the world shall ultimately destroy it.[18] As He alone is True and His Name alone is true one must meditate on His Name. The entire universe functions according to His Order[19]. To know Truth one has to know Him, His creation and His order. The True knowledge comes from Him and with His Will. Only His name is true (satinam), hence one must remember Him, love Him and recite His name to unite with Him and be enlightened with the Truth. Guru Nanak meditated on True Lord's Name and attained enlightenment.

    When the Siddhas showed number of miracles and changed their shapes into lions and birds and showered rain and fire, they asked Guru Nanak to reciprocate. Guru Nanak clarified," I have no other occult powers than the power of the True Lord's Name.[20] " All the Siddhas were subdued through right communication on the Name of the True Lord.

    How can one be emancipated by those bereft of the Lord's Name?[21] Replying Sidhhas, he gave the importance of the True Name as under," Salvation can be achieved only through His Name. Even the lowest reach the highest domain."[22] The one who has got the True Name into his heart, can neither die nor be looted."[23] Those who have the Lord's Name in heart, their toils cease forever. They are purged of every sin & they attain eternal peace.[24]

    What is the power of the True Name? Guru Nanak has made this clear in Japuji Paudi 8 to 11 (p.2-3), where he gave the following benefits of hearing True Lord's Name:

    1. The knowledge of four religious books, six schools of philosophy and twenty-seven ceremonials are acquired.

    2. Truthfulness, contentment and divine knowledge is obtained

    3. The mortal caught in the blind ally finds a path and the unfathomable Lord becomes fathomable

    4. By hearing and constantly reading Lord's name man gains honour and can easily get connected to Him through meditation and progresses ever thereafter

    5. The man then dives deep into the ocean of virtues and the Lord makes a mortal being a scholar, spiritual guide and a monarch.

    6. The mortal understands the ways of uniting with the Lord and the body's secrets and attains the status of Ishar, Brahma and Inder.

    7. The knowledge of continents, the worlds and the nether regions is obtained.

    8. The myth regarding earth that it is supported on bull's horns is cleared and the knowledge about heaven and sky is gained.

    9. The fruit of ablution at sixty-eight holiest places is obtained

    10. Disease and wickedness are wiped off as the saints who hear Lord's Name always develop themselves through meditation and obtain the True Lord's bliss.

    11. Death cannot torment or touch such mortal beings

    12. The devotees ever enjoy happiness and bliss. Sorrow and sin are destroyed. Even the evil beings recite Lord's praises.

    13. The mortal becomes a perfect person, religious guide, spiritual hero and a great yogi.

    The benefits of accepting True Lord's Name as a True command are given in Japuji, Paudi 12-15, ( p.3) are listed below:

    1. By truly believing in the Lord's Name Divine comprehension enters a man's mind and consciousness.

    2. The knowledge of all the spheres is acquired.

    3. Yama, the god of death does not harm the mortal engaged in Lord's Name.

    4. The mortal does not find any obstruction on pilgrim's progress and departs with honour and renown as his path shall not be the worldly path and ritual religious roads. He will always have alliance with righteousness.

    5. He thus finds salvation himself and even helps his kith and kin to obtain salvation as well as the Sikhs of his Guru.

    Thus those who attain union with the Lord have all the mystic powers derived direct from the Lord. They obtain the knowledge of all the spheres and his Creation including all the activities. Guru Nanak attained all what has been stated earlier i.e., freezing the boiling pot of Kauda; stopping the rolling boulder etc., through mediation on Lord's Name.

    What does one want more than this. His fear of death is ever removed as he is saved from transmigration. He is in a state of bliss; his very purpose of living and remembering the Lord is achieved.

    Guru Nanak's method of attaining the True Lord was natural assimilation through meditation on True Lord's Name with devotional love[25] and Lord's Grace was an essential requirement. Guru Nanak described his desire for True Lord's Name in Paudi 32 & 33. "O Lord, make this single tongue of mine into lacs and from lacs into twenty lacs. With each tongue I repeat Your Name lacs of times. This way I ascend the steps to meet the True Lord and to unite with Him. Even the smallest worms in lacs sing in merriment after they hear of Lord's celestial bliss.

    The Lord can be obtained only through His Grace; all other methods are false boasts as the beings have no powers on themselves or nature. By one's own strength no one can be good or bad. No one has the power to escape from the world and attain the bliss. He, The Lord in whose hand the power is, exercises and beholds it.

    In Paudis 34 to 38 he explained the method of reaching Him through meditation. He described the five Realms i.e., Realm of Righteousness (Dharam Khand) (Paudi 34); Realm of Knowledge (Gyan Khand) (Paudi 35), Realm of Spiritual Effort; (Saram Khand) (Paudi 36), Realm of Grace (Karam Khand) and Realm of Truth (Sach Khand) (Paudi 37) through which one has to advance through.

    In the Realm of Righteousness (Dharam Khand) man's vision is very much limited. Being a prisoner in the jail of physical senses. He cannot see anything beyond the physical phenomenon except the working of the Law of "cause and sequence". He is just an actor in the playhouse of infinite forms and acts with the idea that he must perform his duties properly because in the divine court of justice he will be judged by his actions alone.

    Lord made Nights, days, fire and water, Wind, Weather, time and space,

    In between He designed the Earth; For beings to obtain His grace.

    Various beings, forms and faces; Move upon ever-changing globe.

    Acting on the Universe stage; None knows as no one can probe.

    In this realm of mortal life; One idea does sway the mind;

    "Our actions travel with us; May they be of any kind.

    "In divine court of justice; The raw and ripe get apart.

    For all is clear to the Lord; Who can read every heart. (Paudi 34)

    Realm of Knowledge: In Gyan Khand the spirit of divine knowledge reigns. Here the aspirant does his duty with intense faith and sincerity. His knowledge expands and brings him closer to Nature. He finds that there are more and more suns and moons, worlds and creatures, saints and sages, gods and goddesses besides those in the existing material world.

    Before the light of learning; in radian knowledge sphere;

    To mind's eye become clear; many secrets deep and rare;

    Many a wind and ocean waves; many a brook in silver streaks;

    Many a jewel mine, fire cave; many a mount with snowy peaks.

    Many a Sidh, Sadh and Nath; gods like Krishna and Shiv;

    Budha, Brahma, Inder, Dhruv; in world-play act and live.

    He finds no end to continents; lines of kings in royal robes;

    Noble souls and evil entities; suns and moons, skies and orbs.

    Full many a gem of ray serene; many a seeker with light blest;

    And many a sage, devi deva; worship the Lord to their best. (Paudi 35)

    Realm of Toil (Saram Khand): This is the realm of self-exertion and introspection where there is spiritual rapture and beauty all round. Excellence in word, deed and thought are its note and sign. Here Dharma becomes a part of one's own nature. He treads the path of righteousness as a matter of habit and not duty or knowledge. He sympathises all sorrows and sufferings of the beings.

    In blazing light of knowledge; soul discovers essence of life;

    Music sweet from which proceed; peace and joy above vain strife.

    Next comes Domain of Toil; excellence its note and sign.

    Where all beings move and act; in a manner so fair and fine.

    No soul has power to conceive; the subtle moulding there set;

    All attempt at such conception; shall all last end in regret.

    Here are burnished our mind; intellect, skill and the rest.

    All thoughts take proper form; introspection leads us the best.

    The gloom that girts us round; before its glamour fades away.

    Yielding place to thoughts new; sights and scenes ever so gay.(Paudi36)

    Realm of Grace (Karam Khand) is full of spiritual energy. The seeker now begins to commune with the Lord directly. He is now beyond death and deception. His rejoicing becomes perpetual. Like other holy men and women of all climes his heart enshrines the Lord. There is no possibility now of the two getting separated.

    Now he reaches the sphere of Grace; full of power, full of might;

    Where dwell the heroes great; brimming with celestial light.

    There dwell queens like Sita; in rare forms and glories rare.

    There dwell the pious saints; wrapped in peace without a care.

    Above pangs of birth and death; above temptations all dwell they;

    Who enshrine the Lord Supreme; in their heart and to Him pray.

    In this realm of pure delight; where saints immortal reign;

    None may attempt or lead astray; and pleasures take over pain.

    Realm of Truth (Sach Khand) Now ends the arduous journey of the soul and the aspirant becomes one with God. The weary pilgrim at last reaches the final goal-the domain of truth where dwells the Supreme Being raining bliss every where and on every one. Here he espies ending not and engaged in doing what Lord ordains. It is iron-hard to describe the unique vision. None can do so.

    Now we reach realm of truth; where dwells the Formless one;

    Raining bliss from His eyes; every where and on every one.

    The weary pilgrim here espies; world beyond world full of awe;

    Planes and systems with no end; each subjected to His great Law.

    In a state of blissful pleasure; the soul enjoys visions unique.

    The face to face with Reality; beyond one's description, none dare speak.

    (Paudi 37)

    Guru Nanak sums up this path of attainment of the true Lord next.

    At the sacred mint of truth; with sustained effort and grit;

    On the fire of austerity; through the bellows of fear lit.

    In the oven of continence; with Knowledge of God above;

    Melt the Gold of Name divine; in the melting pot of love.

    And on the block of sagacity; coin the world of reality;

    Practice of the blessed few: enjoying Grace of Lord True.(Paudi 38)

    Guru Nanak had received the bliss of union with the True Lord by His Grace through meditation full of devotional love on His Name after passing through all the stages described above. Path described by Guru Nanak was by making a clean mind and heart from all worldly vices with the guidance of the Guru; remembering the True Lord with devotional love; meditating on His Name and obtaining His Grace for uniting with Him. This path is natural, simple and practicable and is devoid of all complications.

    Acquisition of capabilities to gain the required base for scientific solutions by Guru was through the five steps or realms described earlier i.e., detachment from the world full of ego and adopting a path of righteousness, living pious life, obtaining the pra-vidya, the true knowledge, dedicated & committed meditation, thereby obtaining the Grace of the Lord and reaching him in the realm of truth.

    Realm of Righteousness (Dharam Khand): Guru Nanak lived a life of virtue from the very beginning. At the childhood, he spent all the money on feeding the saints and returned home without buying items required to run his business. On his father's inquiry he coolly stated that he has done the true business, as feeding the hungry is the true business. .At Sultanpur while performing the duties of store-keeper, he continued pouring wheat in to the bag of an elderly lady reaching the count of teran (thirteen). Here this teran meant yours i.e., that Nanak belongs to the True Lord.

    Realm of Knowledge: Guru Nanak's realm of knowledge can be explained in terms of apra and pra knowledge. He acquired apra gyan through regular schooling and contact and observation of the knowledgeable and experience of the world during his travels and stay at Kartarpur. Guru Nanak studied business and religious languages from the age of seven onwards. He learnt languages, Vedas and Shashtras, Mathematics and accounting from Pandha Gopal[26] and Pandit Brij Nath[27]. He learnt Persian and Turkish from Maulvi Qutub-u-din.[28] He was sent to Pandit Brij Nath to study first. He learnt too fast. Once the Pundit wrote the 35 alphabets of Lande, Guru Nanak sang a hymn using every alphabet sequentially.[29] He learnt Indian languages and Vedic scriptures from Pandit. He was then sent to a Maulvi. Maulvi taught him Persian, Arabian, Turkish, mathematics, accounting, maintenance of land records and all duties of Patwaris (land record holder). Guru Nanak learnt the Persian alphabets in one go and all the office system with in a few days. Soon he mastered Persian, Arabian, Turkish and Indian languages. Guru Nanak's quest for knowledge continued. He visited most of the globe and met most of the knowledgeable persons of the time. He visited various religious including Hadwar, Allahabad, Benaras, Ayodhya, Gaya, Jagannath Puri, Kanchipuram, Rameshwaram, Girnar, Ujjain, Mathura, Kailash-Mansarovar, Mecca, Medina, Baghdad etc., and met the most knowledgeable and reverred person of the time. These included various Siddhas and Naths, Jainis, pandits, Maulvis, Faqirs like Saint Chaitniya, Saint Kabir, Balnath, Shekh Ibrahim, Baha-u-din Makhdoom, Peer Dastgeer etc. He met various kings and the influential people. These included Emperor Babar, King of Sri Lanka, Kings of Assam and Far East, Nawab of Punjab King Harinath of Patna etc. The list is long but has been kept short as the requirement here is to give examples only and not details.

    He gained pra knowledge through pre-birth and through meditation. Guru Nanak was born with pre-knowledge. At birth he spoke 'Your Name, Your Name' unlike other children who cried differently.[30] As he was just seven months old, he started sitting in Yogi asan.[31] At the age of five, he played with children but spoke of knowledge of God (Braham-gyan). He gave advice to the young and the old and the outsiders.[32] He was just five when he spoke of nether and under worlds. Whatever he spoke, he spoke after deep thought, to the entire satisfaction of the listener.[33] In addition his acquisition of knowledge from various teachers was amazingly fast.

    While being taught by Pandha Gopal he recited a verse which contained godly advice for the Pandha.[34] Pandit Brij Nath acknowledged his pre-birth knowledge bowing before him and said," Somebody may have different Guru; but you are my Guru, who has such an intellect. Now onwards, you run these classes as you wish."[35] Even Maulvi Qutub-u-din was astonished by his pre-knowledge. He acknowledged it, saying," This child has great intellect. He has learnt everything within a very short time. Ordinary students take many years to learn this much."[36] Maulvi further said, "He has the previous knowledge of everything. He does not need any more teaching." Deeming divine knowledge great, whosoever praises it he becomes truthful, uttering the True Name.[37] The writer of Janamsakhi acknowledged that Guru Nanak was a 'perfect man and an avatar.'[38]

    Guru Nanak started giving advice to all Hindu and Muslim elders on their respective religious scriptures[39]. At very young age Guru Nanak gave sermons to Hindus in Hindi and to Muslims in Persian, Arabian and Turkish. Everyone was astonished at his mastery of these languages and in-depth knowledge of religion.[40] Guru Nanak believed in pre-birth. He said "Uniting together the soul and body separate and having separated they unite again. Mortal lives, lives to die and he dies to be born again. He becomes the father of many, the son of many and the guru and the disciple of many. One cannot make the count of future and the past. Who knows what I was in the past and what shall I be in the future? All the deeds are recorded. This is what the creator has been doing and shall continue to do. The mind-ward dies and the Guru-ward is saved. The Merciful Master bestows mercy on him."[41]

    Meditation: Quoting Guru Nanak, Bhai Gurdas wrote," I resorted to meditation by recitation of Lord's Name. I got tuned to Him with love and devotion."[42] Guru Nanak believed that by Lord's Grace, man is blessed with meditation and by His Grace one is ferried across.[43] "Guru Nanak first received Lord's Grace at His gate; he did meditation. He lived on sand and Akk and slept on the bed of sharp pebbles. He meditated a great deal and to his good luck He reached the true Domain and received the True bliss with a direction to help the obsessed, poor and the down-trodden.[44] Details are available in Janamsakhis that he meditated for 14 years 11 months and nine days on the banks of Bein on a platform He achieved enlightenment at Bein in Sultanpur One morning he did not return home after his bath in the River Bein. Everyone was left to believe that he had been drowned. But Nanak did reappear on the bank of the Bein on the third day with a luminous hallow his face. According to Puratan Janamsakhi, the interval was spent in communion with the Supreme Being. Guru Nanak had ascended to the plane of truth and appeared before the True One

    As the Primal Being willed, Nanak the devotee, was ushered into the divine presence. Then a cup filled with amrit (nectar) was given to him with the command, "Nanak, this is the cup of Name-Adoration. Drink it…I am with you and I do bless and exalt you. Whoever remembers you will have my favour. Go, rejoice in my Name and teach others to do so…. I have bestowed upon you the gift of my name. Let this be your calling." Nanak offered his salutations and stood up. Later Nanak celebrated the favour through a song of His praise.

    Were I to live for millions of years and could make air my food and drink.

    Were I to seal myself in a cave and ceaselessly to meditate

    Without seeing the sun or the moon without a wink of sleep.

    I will still not be able to measure your greatness,

    Nor signify the glory of Your Name.

    The Formless One is the eternal replaceable truth,

    Attempt not to describe by heresy knowledge.

    If it pleases Him, He in his grace will reveal Himself…… (SGGS p.14)

    Thereupon, the voice spoke, "Nanak You discern My Will." Nanak recited the Japu, which continued the core of his doctrine and which became the opening text of the Sikh Scripture. The voice was heard again, " ho is just in your eyes, Nanak shall be so in Mine. Whoever receives your grace shall abide in Mine. My Name is the Supreme God, your name is the divine Guru. " Guru Nanak then bowed in gratitude and was given the robe of honour. A sonoround melody in the Raga Dhanasri rang forth:

    The skies are the platter, sun and moon stars, the pearls,

    The breeze id the incense; entire venture, a bouquet of flowers

    What an aarati?

    The wonder of wonders, sundered of the circuit of life and death.

    Your splendid aarti.

    Primal music is playing motionlessly.

    You have a many thousand eyes, but without eyes You are,

    You have a many thousand forms, but without form You are.

    You have a many thousand feet but without feet you are.

    You have a many thousand noses without a nose You are.

    Thoroughly enchanted am i.

    There is a light in all and that light is That one.

    From His light all are illumined.

    Through the Guru the light becomes visible.

    What pleases you becomes your aarti.

    Like the bumble-bee, day and night I long for your lotus-feet.

    Pleads Nanak, grant the thirsty bird, the Nectar of Your Name. (SGGS P.13)

    The above version has brought into focus Guru Nanak's vision of ultimate reality. As he is ushered into the Divine presence, Nanak had a full insight into the existence as well as into the nature of Ultimate reality. He only hears the command and drinks the cup of ambrosia of His Name. The bearing of the command, the holding of the cup, the savouring of the nectar of his name; these together constitute the fullness of his vision of the Infinite One. Drinking the ambrosia signifies the sapiential quality of knowledge received from the Divine. Guru Nanak's encounter with transcendent reality gets him an insight into very ground of the Supreme Being without seeing the presence of any other being. The rejoicing of Guru Nanak follows and sings in ecstasy," I would still not be able to measure thy greatness nor signify the glory of thy Name." This is a resounding melody. In the song of praise he states the formless One is the eternal, irreplaceable truth which cannot ever be described. Awe and wonder have been engendered By Guru Nanak's vision of the unfathomable greatness and the impulse is to describe the indescribable.[45]

    Guru Nanak has thus seen or has darsana (from the root dars- literally "to see") of the Reality. In Sanskrit darsna denotes both seeing and philosophic speculation. The root is 'vid' meaning to know. Also it is related to Latin vidore -to see and Greek Oida- to know. This seeing provides him with a spontaneous and absolute knowledge of that REALITY. Guru Nanak had an intense revelatory experience that was his and his alone. In response to it he rejoiced and poetry was the medium of that expression. The rejoicing was the celebration of the total unicity of ultimate reality and he was launched on a profound mission and was soon recognised as the 'founder' of something new something different.

    Guru Nanak reappeared after 72 hours interval but remained in broken silence. When he spoke the following day, the first words he uttered were: "There is no Hindu; there is no Muslman."[46]

    The news that Nanak had disappeared and reappeared and that he has said, "There is no Hindu; there is no Muslman" reached the Nawab of Sultanpur.

    The Qazi demanded that the Guru should be summoned and required to explain his sweeping assertion bordered on heresy.," He should say what he wished about his own religion, but he had no right to talk lightly of Islam." He added. A messenger was sent to bring Nanak to the court of the Nawab. The messenger approached Nanak but he was so over whelmed by the spirit of peace and the aura around pervading the Guru that he humbly submitted, "Sir, the Nawab shall be very pleased if you grace his court with your presence."

    The Guru answered," My brother, I have no concern with the Nawab now. I am in the service of Him, who is the sovereign of this whole world."

    The messenger returned and reported the conversation. The Qazi rose angrily and said," I will bring the heretic myself to the court of Nawab."

    As he approached the Guru, the Qazi seemed to have lost the mastry over self. In spite of the resolution, he respectfully said, " Nanak come with me; the Nawab is anxious to be enlightened by you."

    "If he seeks enlightenment, I cannot refuse," said the Guru and accompanied him. The Nawab was great believer in saints. Nanak's administration of his store, his disappearance and appearance had greatly impressed him. He rpose to receive the Guru and gave a seat next to him. " I am puzzled by your alleged pronouncement that there is no Hindu; there is no Muslman," he said, " is not Qazi Sahib a true Muslman? Am I not a humble follower of the prophet?"

    "Nawab Sahib, it is very difficult to be a true Musalman," said the Guru. The Qazi turned on him with flashing eyes and said ," What do you mean?"

    The Guru answered through a hymn.

    "He who is firm in his faith, has a right to be called a Muslim.

    His acts must accord with his faith in the prophet.

    He must clean his heart of pride and greed.

    No more troubled by the two imposters - life and death.

    'Resigned to the Will of God, knowing Him as the Doer.

    Freed from the domination of the self, compassionate to all beings.

    Such person may call himself a true Muslim"[47]

    The Qazi was not prepared to accept the verdict and asked," What are you?"

    "I am neither a Muslim nor aHindu," answered the Guru.

    "Why? Are you not religious?" asked the Qazi.

    The Guru said, " Only he has a right to call himself religious, who lives in the light of God's word brought to earth by prophets of all religions. To me all religions are His."

    The time for offering the prayers had come, so the Nawab intervened," If all religions are the same, will you join us in offering prayers?"

    "With pleasure," answered the Guru, " if you or the Qazi will lead the prayer."

    The Nawab and the Qazi rose and the Guru accompanied them.

    When Namaz was offered and the faithful kneeled, Nanak was observed to remain standing and taking no part in the prayers. At the end of prayer, the Qazi turned to Nanak in an agry mood and said," You are an imposter. You said you will pray with us but you remained standing."

    "I promised to offer Namaz with you," said the Guru," Since you were not praying, how could I accompany you?"

    The Qazi turned to the Nawab, " Have you ever heard such blasphemy?" he said. The Nawab turned to the Guru and enquired," What is your explanation"

    " Now tell me does Namaz merely consist of kneeling and bowing?', enquired the Guru. "No," said the Qazi," It is merely the outer expression of humility"

    The Guru asked, " Then tell me what is the inner expression?"

    The Qazi replied, " The worship that the spirit offers in terms of words of prayers to the Lord."

    "That is why I said, neither you nor the Nawab were praying. Though your body was bowing, your spirit was occupied with other things - both yours and of Nawab,' said the Guru.

    " What things?" said the Qazi angrily.

    The Guru said," You were thinking of your mare that had just foaled and you were afraid lest the foal may fall into the well which is in your courtyard. Am I right?'

    The Qazi held down his head for it was true.

    "And me?" asked the Nawab humbly.

    " Your thoughts were not rising up to God," said the guru," You were absorbed in thought of horses, which your agents are purchasing in Qandhar."

    The nawab bowed and said," The Guru is right" The whole congregation was struck dumb with amazement.

    The Guru then turned to the congregation and said," I will tell you how to offer prayers and follow the holy script of Qoran,"

    "In the mosque of love, spread the carpet of faith.

    Enjoy only your rightful earnings, follow the holy script.

    Make restrain and modesty your circumcision

    Moderation you fast.

    Right action the pilgrim to Qaba,

    Make truth your spiritual guide, good work your creed.

    Thus become a Muslim,

    Repeat His name on the rosary, He will exalt you."

    Listen O people I speak the truth.

    Learn to realise the meaning of prayers, purify your minds

    That the words may acquire power and become significant.

    The five periods of the day are associated with five prayers.

    They have five separate names.

    Their foirst requirement is truthfulness.

    The second is to live on lawful earnings.

    The third is to givein to Lord's Name

    The fourth is to discipline the mind with right resolution

    The fifth is to praise God.

    He whose deeds preced the words of prayer,

    Has the right to call himself a Muslim;

    They wander into the wilderness of untruth,

    Who follow the form and ignore the spirit."

    Then the Guru turned to go. The Nawab requested him to stay but the Guru said, " Time has come that I convey the Lord's message to the ignorant." So he left.

    From this episode following facts emerge

    1. Guru Nanak deeply meditated, reached the True Lord and got enlightened.

    2. He found that the Ultimate Reality lies in the True God.

    3. The True Lord can be reached by having faith in Him, His Will and Order praying to Him and remembering Him, reciting His Name ceaselessly from the core of one's heart,

    4. The Spirit is the right guide to lead one to the True Lord. The Spirit must learn the path of truthfulness.

    5. Only the person who has reached the Lord can come to know the Lord and achieve the rare feat of knowing the universe. Knowing the minds of others is a simple example of this as depicted in the episode where Guru Nanak came to know as to what was going in to the minds of Nawab and Qazi.

    Guru Nanak had achieved the required apra knowledge from the best available sources of the time in the situation he was born and brought up. His had pra knowledge from pre-birth and developed it through contact with yogis andsaints and then through ceaseless meditation for over 14 years. During childhood itself he had developed an advanced sense of inquiry and investigation and linked it with the pre-knowledge and the acquired knowledge. His pre-knowledge was stated to be from his pre-birth and the acquired knowledge from his teachers and saints in whose company he got into in his young age. Through inquiry and knowledge he developed his intuition and consciousness and finally developed a very high stage of super-consciousness. He meditated upon His Name for years and reached Him. The intense revelatory ecstatic experience of direct contact was the total uniticity of ultimate reality, the True Lord. He understood that Parmatma or the True Lord is existing everywhere, inside the entire universe and in all the beings. He is in continuity; He is a unity and not in parts. He is thus inside the beings known as atma; the soul which is a continuous part of the Parmatma. If one has to see Him, he can see Him both within and outside. Through meditation he found Him inside and through the True Vision he saw Him in all the beings equally. That is why he found no difference between a Hindu or a Muslim. It is this super-consciousness which helped him to fly into upper and lower regions of the universe and ultimately unite with the Lord. In this stage he stated about the Lord and the universe what he saw. These are thus his personal experiences.

    Guru Nanak was not an ordinary person; he had great powers achieved through meditation, super-consciousness and intuition. Some of his extraordinary actions listed below are described in Janamsakhis:

    1. Describing what was going on in the mind of the Kazi at the time of prayers[48].

    2. Reading the evil feelings of Sajjan Thag and redeeming him [49].

    3. Reviving a dead elephant. otherwise[50].

    4. Freeing Mardana from the occult powers of Nur Shah Jadugarani.[51]

    5. Facing the Kalyug Demon and redeeming him.[52]

    6. Treating the leprosy patient.[53]

    7. Freezing the boiling pot of the Demon Kauda and redeeming him otherwise[54].

    8. Stopping a huge boulder rolled down from a hillock by Wali Kandhari, with his palm and redeeming him otherwise[55].

    9. Moving Mecca in the direction of movement of his feet [56].

    10. Obtaining hot pudding from the heavens in the presence of astonished Peer Dastgeer otherwise[57].

    11. Hearing his sister Bebe Nanaki's call thousands of miles away [58].

    From these events one would discern that Guru Nanak had the super-natural or occult powers. However, Guru Nanak did not believe in occult powers. He said,"ridhi sidhi awra saad' (Japuji)

    Through his meditation on True Lord's Name he achieved the great powers. However he never used these powers for his personal benefit, but for the benefit of the poor; the downtrodden and the oppressed. He said, " There is only One Lord the sustainer of all high and low."[59] He used his powers to guide them to the True Name of the Lord. Despite of these extra-ordinary powers he remained in sublimity and humility. He said," I am the lowest of the low and poorest of the poor. I am with these lowest and the poor. Why should I compare and copy the great and rich."[60] He never showed his powers to subdue or humiliate others, but to help them.

    Guru Nanak had achieved enlightenment at Bein in Sultanpur after long and deep meditation and had attained the Realms of Toil, Grace and Truth. Guru Nanak's consciousness had reached this stage of super-consciousness where he could not only fathom the globe but also the entire universe.

    These experiences are somewhat different than what have been described by the sages and seers of the past but are very near to the findings of the neo-scientists who now after over 550 years of his birth, are trying to delve into. If they follow these experiences seriously they will certainly find the new world a very happy place to live with all the developments which otherwise does not appear to be possible.


    ¨ Gurmat Darshan, Dr. Sher Singh, SGPC, Sri Amritsar, 1951.

    ¨ Gurmat Martand, Guru Granth Kosh, Gyani Lal Singh sangrur, Janak Pustak Bhandar, Sangrur, 1949.

    ¨ Gurmat Parbhakar, Bhai Kahn Singh Nabha, Gurmat Press, Amritsar, 1922.

    ¨ Gurmat Sahit, Ed. Dr.Jeet Singh Seetal, Bhasha Vibhag, Punjab, Patiala, 1989

    ¨ Gurmat Sudhakar, Bhai Kahn Singh , Gurmat Press, Amritsar, 1922

    ¨ Guru Granth Vishav Kosh 2 Vols, Dr. Rattan Singh Jaggi, Punjabi University, Patiala, 2002.

    ¨ Guru Granth Sanket Kosh, Piara Singh Padam, Punjabi University, Patiala, 1977.

    ¨ Hymns of Guru Nanak, Language Department, Punjab, 1972.

    ¨ Janamsakhis, Edited by Dr. Kirpal Singh, Punjabi University, Patiala

    ¨ Nanak Prakash Patrika, Special No. on Naam Simran & Sidhant Nirnai, Punjabi University Patiala, June 1990

    ¨ Nirgun Sahit, Punjabi Duniya, no. 6, June 1969, Bhasha Vibhag Punjab, Patiala

    ¨ Varan Bhai Gurdas, SGPC, Amritsar, 1952.


    [1] Sacha sach(u) soyee avr(u) na koyee. The Lord is the only truth and nothing else. (SGGS p. 1020) 4

    swcw scu soeI Avru n koeI [[(pMnw 1020)

    [2] Japuji Moolmantra

    [3] op cit

    [4] op cit

    5. scy qyry KMf scy bRhmMif[[ scy qyry loA scy Awkwr[[scy qyry krxy srb bIcwr [[
    scy qyrw Amru scw dIbwxu [[scw qyrw hukmu scw Purmwxu[[scw qyrw krmu scw nIswxu[[
    scy quDu AwKih lK kRoV[[scy siB qwix scY siB joir[[
    scI qyrI isPiq scI swlwh[[ scI qyrI kudriq scy pwiqswh [[
    nwnk scu iDAwiein scu[[jo mir jMmy su kcu inkcu [[ (pMnw 463)
    6.buiD pwiT n pweIAY bhu cqurweIAY Bwie imlY min Bwxy[[(pMnw 436)
    7. Agm Agocru AnwQu AjonI gurmiq eyko jwinAw [[
    suBr Bry nwhI icqu folY mn hI qy mnu mwinAw[[
    gur prswdI AkQau kQIAY khau khwvY soeI[[ (pMnw 1233)
    eykm eykMkwr inrwlw [[ Agm AjonI jwiq n jwlw[[
    Agm Agocru rUpu n ryiKAw[[Kojq Kojq Git Git dyiKAw[[
    jˆo dyiK idKwvY iqs kau bil jweI[[ gur prswid prm pdu pweI [[
    ikAw jpu jwpau ibnu jgdIsY [[ gur kY sbid mhlu Gru dIsY [[ (pMnw 838)
    hir Agm Agwhu AgwiD inrwlw[[ hir AMqu n pweIAY guur gopwlw[[
    siqgur miq qwry qwrxhwrw myil ley rMig lInw hy [[ (pMnw 1027)
    siqguru AlKu khhu ikau lKIAY ijsu bKsy iqsih pCwqw hy [[ (pMnw 1032)

    [8] Vinoba Bhave: Commentary on Japuji, Translation by Gurcharan Singh

    Talib, Punjabi University, Patiala, 1989, p.4

    [9] Raag Aasa, Mahla 1, p.468, ;u[ ;GBk j'fJ dko{ gkg eY? X'fJ.

    [10] Ramkali Mahla 1

    [11] Vaar Ramkali Mahla 1

    [12] Aasa di Vaar Mahla 1, (P. 468), scu qw pru jwxIAY jy irdY scw hoie[[

    ……nwnku vKwxy bynqI ijn scu plY hoie[[ (pMnw 468)
    imilAw hoie n vICuVY jo imilAw hoeI[[ Awvwgaux invwirAw hY swcw soeI[[ (pMnw 729)

    [13]imilAw hoie n vICuVY jo imilAw hoeI[[ Awvwgaux invwirAw hY swcw soeI[[ (pMnw 729

    [14] Manushyana shastreshu kakshdhyatati sidhye. Yattampi siddhana kakshnma veti tatvta.

    [15] Awid scu jˆuugwid scu hY BI scu nwnk hosI BI scu[[(jpujI pMnw 1)

    [16] soeI soeI sdw scu swihbu swcw swcI nweI.[[ hY BI hosI jwie n jwsI rcnw ijn rcweI[[ (pauVI 26)

    [17] siq suhwxu sdw min cwau[ (jpujI pauVI 21)

    [18]swcw scu soeI Avru n koeI[[ijin isrjI iqn hI Puin goeI[[( sI gurU gRMQ swihb pMnw 1020)

    [19] ijv ijv hukmu iqvY iqv kwr[ (jpujI )

    [20] bwJoˆ scy nwm dy horu krwmwiq Aswˆ qy nwhI[[(vwrwˆ BweI gurdws vwr 1-43)

    [21]nwm ibhUx mukiq ikau hoie[[[[(vwrwˆ BweI gurdws vwr 1-48)

    [22] bwbw AwKy nwQ jI! nwnk nwm jpy giq pweI[ nIcu khwie aUc Gir AweI[[(vwrwˆ BweI gurdws vwr 1-28)

    [23] n Eih mrih n Twgy jwih[[ ijn kY rwm vsY min mwih[[ (jpujI)

    [24] ijnI nwmu iDAwieAw gey mskqu Gwil[[ nwnk qy muK aujly kyqI CuutI nwil[[ (jpujI slok)

    [25] pRym Bgiq kir shij smwie, (pMnw 685)

    [26] Janamsakhi Walaitwali p.3.

    [27] Janamsakhi Bhai Mani Singh p.332

    [28] Janamsakhi Miharban p.59-61

    [29] Janamsakhi Walaitwali, Janamsakhi Prampra edited by Dr. Kirpal Singh p.3-4

    [30] Avrw bwlkw kw suBwau rovxY kw aUAwˆ aUAwˆ Aru gurU bwby nwnk kw suBwau eyhI khY qyro nwau, qyro nwau
    (imhrbwn vwlI jnmswKI ijld pihlI pMnw 58)

    [31] jb sqwˆ mhIinAwˆ hUAw qb lgw ckR mwr bYTxy, jˆoigMdr jˆYsY bYTk bYsY[ siq mhIny kw bwlku Aru kYsy
    bYTqw hY[ (auhI pMnw 59)

    [32] jb bwbw brswˆ kw hoAw qwˆ lgw bwqwˆ Agm ingm kIAw krn, jˆo bwq kry smJ kr kry iqsqy sBs iksy
    dI insw hovy[(jnmswKI vlwieq vwlI pMnw 3)

    [33] jb pMij iCAwˆ brswˆ kw hUAw qb Kylih bwlkhu swiQ Aru bylY bRhm igAwnuu, nsIhiq dy bwlkwˆ kau vifAwˆˆ
    kau, ibigAwnIAwˆ kau[ ( auhI pMnw 59)

    [34] Kirpal Singh, Janamsakhi Prampara, Janam Sakhi Meharban p.60.

    [35] ibid

    [36] ibid p.61

    [37] frnkB[ ;bkj/ tvk efi ;u' ;uk BkT[. (gzBk 1243)

    [38] Miharban wali Janamsakhi in Janamsakhi Prampra p. 61

    [39] ibid

    [40] ibid

    [41] juiV juiV ivCuVy ivCuiV juVy[ jIiv jIiv muey muey jIvy[
    kyqIAw ky bwp kyqIAw byty kyqy gur cyly hUey [
    AwgY pwCY gxiq n AwvY ikAw jwqI ikAw huix hoey[[
    sB krxw ikrqu kir ilKIAY kir kir krqw kr kry[ (pMnw 1233)

    [42] hau jipAw prmysro, Bwau Bgq sMg qwVI lweI[ vwrwˆ BweI gurdws vwr 1-28)

    [43] nwnk krmI bMdgI ndir lMGwie pwir[[ (pMnw 1242)

    [44] pihlw bwby pwXw bKsa dir ipCo dy iPr Gwil kmweI[ ryq Aku Awhwru kir roVw kI gur krI ivCweI[
    BwrI krI qpisAw vfy Bwgu hir isau bix AweI[bwbw pYDw sc KMif nau iniD nwmu grIbI pweI[[
    (vwrwˆ BweI gurdws vwr 1-24

    [45] Nikky Gurinder Kaur, Guru Nanak's Vision of Ultimate Reatlity, Khera, Bhai Vir

    Singh Sahitya Sadan, New Delhi, Vol-IX issue-1 Jan-Mar 1990, p. 16-37

    [46] Puratan Janamsakhi: Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji, Amritsar Khalsa Samachar, 1948

    [47] Musalman Kahavan Muskil

    [48] Janamsakhi Walait Wali p. 13.

    [49] Janamsakhi Walait Wali p. 15.

    [50] Janamsakhi Walait Wali p. 20-21

    [51] Janamsakhi walaiwali p.21-22

    [52] Janamsakhi Walait wali p32.

    [53] Janamsakhi WalaitWali p.44

    [54] Janamsakhi Bale Wali p.305

    [55] Janamsakhi Bhai Bala p.284

    [56] tMgoˆ pkV GsIitAw iPirAw m`kw klw idKweI[[( vwrwˆ BweI gurdws vwr 1-32 )

    [57] lK Awkwsu pwqwl lK AK Puurk ivc sB idKlweI[[ Br kckOOl pRswd dw Duroˆ pqwloˆ leI kVweI[[
    (vwrwˆ BweI gurdws, vwr 1-36)

    [58] Kirpal Singh (Ed.), Janam Sakhi Walait Wali p.11, Janamsakhi Prampara, Punjabi University, Patiala, 1969.

    [59] sBnw jIAw kw eyku dwqw so mY ivsru n jweI[[ (jpujI pauVI 5)

    [60] nIcw AMdir nIc jwiq nIcI hU Aiq nIic[[ nwnku iqn kY sMig swiQ vifAw isau ikAw rIs[[(pMnw 15)
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  3. Original

    Original United Kingdom
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    Writer SPNer

    Jan 10, 2011
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    Your article above is a good encouragement for the student Sikh to render meaning more distinctly and assuredly. Perhaps a little too long for immediate apprehension and digestion by the mind to make sense in one hit [sitting], but is nevertheless, much needed piece of literature for its religious and cultural significance. Indeed, it not only preserves form, but also promotes Nanak’s perennial doctrine of Satnam [ultimate truth].

    I suppose that no one possessing the slightest knowledge of literary expression could remain untouched by its philosophical and spiritual wonder to render it otherwise. As a result, I cannot persuade myself to leave it thus unattended without a word or two because literature of this kind has been long overdue and in some respects so carelessly presented, that the perfect finishing of it becomes a matter of curiosity and ridicule, therefore an interruption to serious Sikh thought. Refraining as it were, from entering unduly into the question of the general propriety of such treatment, I would only observe that, at least in this instance, it is based on a truer principle of the “permanence” in all – Satnam.

    Thank you for the education.

    Respectfully yours
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