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Sabad -Word

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by Taranjeet singh, Mar 19, 2010.

  1. Taranjeet singh

    Taranjeet singh India
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    Oct 21, 2009
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    Word ​

    The friction of two objects produces sound.138 When sound patterns are joined together in a particular way they give rise to meaningful words. God independently produced the primal sound when He assumed a manifested form from His un-manifested state. The mystical celestial sound produced by God in this process is usually compared with the bursting of a fruit139 and is described as WORD.

    Most religions of the world believe that everything in the Universe came out of this uncreated word of God (SbdwbRhm).140 Almost all of them call the “Word” omnipresent invisible wave (AidRSt Dwrw), which is infinite (byAMq, AsIm) and is the source of emancipation. The intuitive effect of the Shabad (Word) is a very sweet musical sound. According to Sikhism the whole universe came out of this one Word, which is present in the universe in sound, light, and motion in changing and changeable forms of energy. 141

    The “Word” has been given different names by different religions. The Muslims call it Kalam-e-ilahi, Awaz-e-Mustkim, Sultan-ul-Azkar, Ism-e-zaat, ‘Kun Fayukun’, ‘Bang-e-Asmani’, ‘Nad-e-Sultani’, ‘Sawt-e-Sarmadi’ (sOqy srmdI), ‘Ism-e-Azam’, Sultan-e-Alafa or ‘Sultan-ul-Azkar etc.,’

    Sometimes in the Holy Quran it is also mentioned as 'Word' (For example Quran 6:7) or Haq (Truth) as in Quran 36:82. 142

    The Hindu Rishis called it ‘ Nad’, ‘Vak (or Vach)’, ‘Akashbani’ (AwkwS vwxI), ‘Dibh-dhuni’ (id`B DunI), and ‘Dev Dhun’. (dyv Dun), or audgIq ] It is a common belief among the Hindus that the sound of the word of God was Om (Em). 143

    The Greeks called the “Word” Logos, Nous or Noumenon and defined it by saying that ‘Logos’ is one and only, it pervades the universe and is unchangeable. It is God’s law, God’s Will and God Himself.

    The Christians and the Jews call it ‘Memra’. It appears to have been derived from Armenian word ‘Amer’ which means ‘Word’ (Sbd, bwxI). The Jews define it as God’s Word or ‘God’s Hukam (hukm) and consider it as God’s invisible fiat, by which creation came into existence. 144

    In the Chinese Scripture ‘Tau’ has been eulogised a lot. ’Tau’ is defined as eternal Word, Truth, rationality, repository of spiritual knowledge, mystical element, or a principle giving motion to mind and matter. The Chinese say that ‘Tau’ is the basis of the creation of the universe and everything exists in ‘Tau’.

    The Parsees call it “Sarosha”. It is said to have existed before earth, vegetation and fire came into being. It is God’s (Ahuramazda’s) Will that creates the world, sustains it and destroys it. It is piety, religion and reality all in one.

    Guru Nanak Dev named it Sat Naam (siqnwm), which is synonymous with ‘Word’.145 Guru Arjan Dev said that the main aim of every religion is to attune with Naam (nwm). “In Guru Nanak’s house we deal in Naam”.146 Guru Granth Sahib tells us “All attributes of the Universe can be described through the 52 letters (of Sanskrit alphabet) but the attributes of divine “Word” cannot be explained through any letter or word of the alphabet”.147

    Our five senses provide us knowledge of sound, touch, sight, taste and smell. Shabad (sound of the primal Word) is served by two senses that of hearing and seeing (when the Word is written). The real knowledge and therefore enjoyment of the Shabad (sound) lies only in hearing. Written Shabad is an imitation of the real. The ‘Word’ (Shabad) in Gurbani is used interchangeably for both hearing and reading. The written word only helps us in understanding a part of the reality and is not a substitute for the real ‘Word’. However with practice it leads us to the real ‘Word’.

    This divine ‘Word’ is within us all but most of the time we are disconnected from it. The question for the God men has been how to understand the “Word” that created the universe and promulgated God’s law. In order to make it intelligible to ordinary human beings, the religious preceptors (Gurus, Sants or Murshids) devote their psychic energies and get in tune with it. They then try to explain the God’s Word in their own language, which ordinary people can understand. Having done so they leave their findings in the Scripture. According to Sikhism the devotee succeeds in attuning to Naam through Gurbani (Shabad) and thus reaches his destination (the primordial Word).148 Acknowledging the ultimate importance of the “Word” the Guru says, “I died for the world through Shabad and was then raised to life through it. Thus I obtained salvation.

    The Word cleanses the mind and the body and in the clean mind God enters to sanctify it.”149 “Without the Word (knowledge) humans are like blind people fumbling in darkness”.150

    Human soul is subtle. It is not something physical. The source of an abstract subtle thing must also be subtle. ‘Word’ is subtle and is the nearest thing to God. In Gurbani the phraseology used by Bhatts to describe Guru Nanak is equally subtle and mystical. For example they describe him not merely as a human being but as a “Carrier of the light” (joiq srUp) or carrier of energy (klw Dwr). Here the light or energy means the spiritual wisdom or power of the Word. Guru Nanak was Guru only as long as he was the disseminator of the mystical ‘Word’.

    138 Such sound is called Awhq (Frictional). Another sound is continuous, limitless and is not produced by friction. Mystics call it Anwhq (Anwhd). It was produced by God and is the basis of creation.

    139 Scientists call it “Big Bang” It produced light, sound and heat energy (which is necessary for life). jh iJil imil kwru idsMqw ] qh Anhd sbd bjMqw (pMnw 657) jh Anhq sUr auj´wrw ] qh dIpk jlY CMCwrw (pMnw 657)

    140 sBu ieko sbdu vrqdw jo kry su hoeI (pMnw 654)inrMkwru Akwr hoie eykMkwr Apwr sdwieAw [ EAMkwrhu sbd Duin EAMkwr Akwr bxwieAw (B: gU vwr 26/2)

    141 auqpiq prlau sbdy hovY, sbdy hI iPir Epiq hovY (pMnw 117) eyyko sbdu eyko pRB vrqY sB eyks qy auqpiq clY (pMnw 1334) sB mih sbd vrqY pRB swcw (pMnw 351) sB ieko sbdu vrqdw jo kry su hoeI (pMnw 654) Shamas Tabrez says, " Awlm Az sOq zhUr igRPq, Az hzUrS bswiq nUr igRPq" (The universe came into existence from Word and all light originated from it). “Understand the primordial ‘Word’ forgetting all books. Illumine yourself within. How many books will you read?” (Hazrat Sai Qutab Ali Shah).

    142 Maulana Roomi called it Naam. Muslims believe that God said, "Kun Fayukun (kun PXUkun). He said, 'Be' and everything came into existence. kIqw pswE eyko kvwE (jpujI)

    143 “Word is truly God. Word is the highest truth.” (Kath Upnishad XV 24) Word is pRxv or eternal God (AMimRqnwd aupinSd Slok 24). The word is OM. “XujIq pRvY cyqh pxRvy bRhm inRBYXm] pRxvy inqXXukqsX n BXM ivDqy kvicq” (Mandukya Upnishad-Gaudapad’s 25th Karika) “The mind must be unified with OM because OM is Braham, the fearless. He who is unified with OM knows no fear .Hindus prefix this word with many Mantras.

    “ijhVw mnuK EAM (Em) AKr dw aucwrx krdw
    hoieAw sRIr dw iqAwg krdw hY auh prmgqI nuM pRwpq huMdw hY” (gIqw VIII.13)

    144 Your “Word” has been true from the beginning and your Will is unquestionable (Psalms 1.11) “In the beginning was the “Word” and the “Word” was God. (John 1.12) Git Git vwjY ikMgurI Anidnu sbid suBwie (pMnw 62)

    145 eyk nwim jug cwir auDwry sbdy nwm ivswhw hy (pMnw 1055). “inrMkwr ny Sbd rUpI Akwr Dwrn kir inrMkwrI nwm dw jwmw pihinAw ……
    Sbd rUpI swkwrI inrMkwr nUM jp jp ky hI inrMkwr ivKy, inrMkwrI joiq ivKy, lIn hox dI s`cI gurmiq jugqI hY” (‘nwm qy nwm dw dwqw siqgurU’- BweI rxDIr isMG pMnw 15)

    146 nwnk kY Gir kyvl nwmu" (pMnw 1136) “auhI Sbd jo KMfW bRihmMfW ivc ivAwpk hY, jd gurU swihb dy jW hor keI BgqW dy pivqr ihrdy duAwrw bwxI rUp ho ky prgt hoieAw qW aus dw sMgRih kr ky sRI gurUU gRMQ rUp ivc sRI gurU Arjn dyv jI ny hirmMdr swihb ivc sQwpq kr ky Awp nmSkwr kIqI Aqy sB sMgq qoN krvweI ] (‘scw gurU’ igAwnI aUDm isMG pMnw 122)

    147 bwvn ACr lok qRY sBu kCu ien hI mwih, ey AKr iKir jwihgy Eie AKr ien mih nwih (pMnw340)

    148 sbdy hI qy nwau aupjY sbdy myl imlwieAw, ibn sbdY siB jg baurwnw ibrQw jnm gvwieAw (pMnw 644). Gurbani is Naam in essence..

    149 hm sbid muey sbid mwir jIvwly BweI sbdy hI mukiq pweI, sbdu gur pIrw gihr gMBIrw, ibn sbdY jg baurwnM (m:1) sbdy mnu qnu inrmlu hoAw hir visAw min AweI (pMnw 601)

    150 ibnu sbdY suxIAY nw pyKIAY jgu bolw AMMnHw Brmwie (pMnw 429)

    Taken from:
    Concepts of Sikh Religion [pages-45-46][Available on net in pdf format]
    G.S.Sidhu M.A
    Publisher: Gurmat Bhawan Mandi Mullan Pur (Ludhiana),
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