Gagan Damama Bajiyo | ਗਗਨ ਦਮਾਮਾ ਬਾਜਿਓ ਪਰਿਓ ਨੀਸਾਨੈ ਘਾਓ ॥ | Sikh Philosophy Network
  • Welcome to all New Sikh Philosophy Network Forums!
    Explore Sikh Sikhi Sikhism...
    Sign up Log in

Gagan Damama Bajiyo | ਗਗਨ ਦਮਾਮਾ ਬਾਜਿਓ ਪਰਿਓ ਨੀਸਾਨੈ ਘਾਓ ॥

Aug 19, 2005
Fremont, California
ਸਲੋਕ ਕਬੀਰ ॥ (1105) Shalok, Kabir:
Bibi Harsimrat Kaur Khalsa
Guru Granth Parchar Mission of USA

ਗਗਨ ਦਮਾਮਾ ਬਾਜਿਓ ਪਰਿਓ ਨੀਸਾਨੈ ਘਾਓ ॥

“The battle-drum beats in the sky of the mind; aim is taken, and the wound is inflicted.”

What is the purpose of beating drums in warfare? Each army uses rhythm and visible symbols for various reasons. As long as the regular beat is sounding the army is building up its spirit and courage to fight the fight of victory. Why do people wage war? There are several reasons for this. One reason is for self preservation of life or identity. The other reason is for revenge. Another reason is for greed. Sometimes there is a fine line which determines when war must be declared. Kabir Ji is not simply just talking about nations fighting and drums rolling. The drums represent the signal for action. The first word in this shabad is ggn sky. The sky represents the mind full of gian. Until the drums start rolling, the army will not approach to start to fight. Once they hear the drums, then the information is triggered in the mind. The mind processes this information; then feeds it to the rest of the body with detailed instructions. The mind is the supreme commander of the forces. If this commander has no stable, constructive information to give, then the whole army will lose. There will be no strategy, no authority, and no willpower. The army will flee with all the soldiers scattered. But when there is a logical reason to fight, warfare should be the last resort; and not the first. Both sides must realize that the only way to avoid killing thousands of people is by trying to comprise a way that both sides will benefit equally. Sometimes the need of a neutral mediator is used to encourage both sides to learn to trust one another. In a situation where promises are severely broken, and the welfare of the people is at stake, then there is no other option. Guru Gobind Singh taught us that the sword is only to be used as a last resort. The bow and arrow and the sword were some of the most popular weapons of warfare used hundreds of years ago. Every strike requires learned and practiced skill with agile aim applying the proper pressure, so that the target is struck in the most effective way. The better the strike: the more severe the wound. The whole purpose of inflicting wounds is to weaken or destroy the enemy. The weakest army will always lose, but no matter how many men are in the army, no matter how much physical skill and weapons they have, intelligence, wisdom is the main factor for winning. Sometimes it is not wise to react to a small violent action, because it may be done to booby-trap you into an ambush. Sometimes you need to react to small episodes, too. The purpose for espionage is to inform the army of the enemy’s future strategies. Watchmen are constantly placed in inconspicuous places in case of surprise attacks. Kabir Ji is presenting in this shabad his documentary of a typical war scenario from the beginning of the battle to the end. Is there really an end to a severe war? There is always room for revenge and retaliation. Once the losers are given enough time and opportunity to recuperate and find many allies, the war will continue sometimes until total destruction. So when someone is attacking you, then that is the main time to plan a war. Once the plan is ready and the army prepared, then the war will begin. Careful planning can only be done by wise people that use their warfare experiences. They know the patterns of the enemy; they know the weaknesses and strengths of their army as well as of their enemy. The must also know the battlefield well. They examine all territory structures and physical features, such as forests, caves, hills, cliffs, high grass, and sources of water. They must know the psychology of the enemy well in order to entice them into a trap. They must also know when it is a good time of the year to fight. If a field battle is during a drought, the army will die of thirst. If a long war bout is during the heavy rainy season, the soldiers will be stuck the mud and catch the flu or pneumonia.

ਖੇਤੁ ਜੁ ਮਾਂਡਿਓ ਸੂਰਮਾ ਅਬ ਜੂਝਨ ਕੋ ਦਾਉ ॥1॥
“The spiritual warriors enter the field of battle; now is the time to fight! ||1||”
It is very important for an army to have commanders that are expertise and trustworthy. The commander must also be able to trust in the abilities and faithfulness of his entire army. Warfare is strictly a team operation of total cooperation. The failure of one soldier, regardless of rank can jeopardize the entire army. It takes only one act of deception to weaken the entire chain of cooperation and success. What is the battlefield in this shabad? It is the battlefield of life where one fights his five vices towards the victory of self control. There is no particular battlefield in which all battles are done. Any area can be a battlefield. Our minds go everywhere we go, walk, sleep, and sit. The enemy can surprise attack at any time. We must be constantly on our guard, continually being aware of our weaknesses and strengths. We must always develop our physique with proper diet and exercise. We must continually use our minds to learn about our surroundings by daily contemplation of the teachings of Guru Granth Sahib. This kind of war is not about bloodshed. All wars are caused by what goes on in the mind. It’s a long chain reaction of facts, lies, or exaggerations spread to hungry listeners. Sometimes wealthy people cause wars to make money manufacturing weapons and the newest billion dollar booming business – security guards and computer war technology for ships, fighter jets, and submarines.

War should be understood as an actual, intentional and widespread armed conflict between political communities.
Just war theory can be meaningfully divided into three parts, the first which concerns the justice of resorting to war in the first place; 2) which concerns the justice of conduct within war, after it has begun; and 3) which concerns the justice of peace agreements and the termination phase of war. Just war theory insists all six criteria must each be fulfilled for a particular declaration of war to be justified: it's all or no justification, so to speak.

1. Just cause for starting war. This is clearly the most important rule; only for the right reason.: self-defense or the defense for others from those in violation of someone else's basic rights; the protection of innocents from brutal, aggressive regimes; and punishment for a grievous wrongdoing which remains uncorrected. Should one must wait for the aggression actually to happen, or is it permissible to attack against anticipated aggression; or one must wait, since it would be bad to “punish someone for an offense they have yet to commit.” But it is the seriousness of the anticipated aggression; evidence required; the speed with which one must decide; and the issue of fairness and the duty to protect one's people. If one knows a terrible attack is coming soon, one owes it to one's people to shift from defense to offense. The best defense, as they say, is a good offense. Why let the aggressor have the upper hand of the first strike? But that's the very issue: can you attack so that you do not become the aggressor? Can striking first still be considered an act of defense from aggression? International law, for its part, sweepingly forbids pre-emptive strikes unless they are clearly authorized in advance by the UN Security Council.

2. Right intention. A state must intend to fight the war only for the sake of its just cause. Having the right reason for launching a war is not enough: the actual motivation behind the resort to war must also be morally appropriate. Ulterior motives, such as a power or land grab, or irrational motives, such as revenge or ethnic hatred, are ruled out.

3. Proper authority and public declaration. A state may go to war only if the decision has been made by the appropriate authorities, according to the proper process, and made public, notably to its own citizens and to the enemy state(s). The “appropriate authority” is usually specified in that country's constitution.

4. Last Resort. A state may resort to war only if it has exhausted all peaceful alternatives to resolving the conflict in question, in particular diplomatic negotiation. One wants to make sure something as momentous and serious as war is declared only when it seems the last practical and reasonable shot at effectively resisting aggression.

5. Probability of Success. A state may not resort to war if it can foresee that doing so will have no measurable impact on the situation. The aim here is to block mass violence which is going to be futile.

6. Proportionality. A state must, prior to initiating a war, weigh the universal goods expected to result from it, such as securing the just cause, against the universal evils expected to result, notably casualties. Only if the benefits are proportional to, or “worth”, the costs may the war action proceed.

We must also consider the expected consequences of launching a just war, the right conduct in the midst of battle, which is the responsibility or the military commanders, officers and soldiers who formulate and execute the war policy. We need to be concerned with the rules that a state should observe regarding the enemy and its armed forces and also be concerned with the rules a state must follow in connection with its own people as it fights war against an external enemy. There are several rules of a state regarding the enemy and its armed forces in relation to the states own people and army

1. Obey all international laws on weapons prohibition. Chemical and biological weapons, in particular, are forbidden by many treaties. Nuclear weapons aren't so clearly prohibited but it seems fair to say a huge taboo attaches to such weapons and any use of them would be greeted with incredible hostility by the international community.

2. Discrimination and Non-Combatant Immunity. Soldiers are only entitled to use their (non-prohibited) weapons to target those who are, “engaged in harm.” Thus, when they take aim, soldiers must discriminate between the civilian population and legitimate military, political and industrial targets involved in rights-violating harm. International law seeks to protect unarmed civilians as best it can.

3. Proportionality. Soldiers may only use force proportional to the end they seek. They must restrain their force to that amount appropriate to achieving their aim or target; and not to use weapons of mass destruction.

4. Humane treatment of quarantined prisoners of war (POWs).because the enemy soldiers they stop being threats to basic rights. Thus it is wrong to target them with death, starvation, rape, torture, medical experimentation, and so on. They are to be provided, as The Geneva Conventions spell out, with benevolent—not malevolent—quarantine away from battle zones and until the war ends, when they should be exchanged for one's own POWs. Do terrorists deserve such protection, too? Great controversy surrounds the detainment and aggressive questioning of terrorist suspects held by the U.S. at jails in Cuba, Iraq and Pakistan in the name of the war on terror.

5. No Means. Soldiers may not use weapons or methods which are “evil in themselves.” These include: mass rape campaigns; genocide or ethnic cleansing; using poison or treachery (like disguising soldiers to look like the Red Cross); forcing captured soldiers to fight against their own side; and using weapons whose effects cannot be controlled, like biological agents.

6. No reprisals. A reprisal is when a country violates in war with the enemy country. then that country takes revenge to commit the same violation, to punish the other country into obeying the rules. There are strong moral and evidentiary reasons to believe that vengeance does not work, and they instead serve to escalate death and make the destruction of war increasingly indiscriminate. Winning well is the best revenge.

How do you conduct the third and final stage of war: that of war termination? It involves regulating the ending of wars, to ease the transition from war back to peace.

1. Proportionality and Publicity. The peace settlement should be measured and reasonable, as well as publicly proclaimed.
2. Rights Vindication. The settlement should secure those basic rights whose violation triggered the justified war, such as life and freedom and community entitlements to territory and sovereignty.

3. Discrimination. Distinction needs to be made between the leaders, the soldiers, and the civilians in the defeated country one is negotiating with. Civilians are entitled to reasonable immunity from punitive post-war measures.

4. Punishment #1. When the defeated country has been a blatant, rights-violating aggressor, proportionate punishment must be meted out. The leaders of the regime, in particular, should face fair and public international trials for war crimes.

5. Punishment #2. Soldiers also commit war crimes. Justice after war requires that such soldiers, from all sides to the conflict, likewise be held accountable to investigation and possible trial.
6. Compensation. Financial restoration helps the defeated country to begin its own reconstruction.

7. Rehabilitation. The post-war environment provides a promising opportunity to reform week institutions in an aggressor regime, such as: demilitarization and disarmament; police and judicial re-training; human rights education; and even deep structural transformation towards a minimally just society governed by a legitimate regime.

Just as the science of war ethics is vast, so is the actual method of fighting. Bhagat Kabir Ji teaches us in this shabad what war we must be ready to fight, and what to expect in the process. Guru Granth Sahib teaches us what we are to battle every day, and that is our five vices. If we surrender to our vices, then we weaken ourselves and deprive ourselves the very right to believe in truthfulness. The religion of Kabir Ji is the same teachings as the philosophy of all of the Guru Granth Sahib. We fight to defend our faith which keeps us going.

ਸੂਰਾ ਸੋ ਪਹਿਚਾਨੀਐ ਜੁ ਲਰੈ ਦੀਨ ਕੇ ਹੇਤ ॥
“He alone is known as a spiritual hero, who fights in defense of religion.”
This is typical of Sikh history, fighting for freedom of religion. For a very long time, India has been under the control of Brahmans. The new threat to India has been the Mogul Moslems terrorizing in the name of Islam, when they were not religious themselves. They were only outwardly showing their religiosity. These Moguls were only interested in land and money. They know that very few would convert, and if they would, they would be considered fools. Guru Tegh Behadar risked his life for the sake of rescuing and entire Hindu village in Dehli from Moslem forced conversion. He made a deal with Mogul leader Aurangzeb that if they could successfully force him to convert, then his Sikhs would allow them to convert the entire village. So what was Guru Ji’s plan? He tricked the Mogul ruler by convincing him that if the executioner would try to cut off his head, God would not allow the knife to cut him. After the attempt, the Mogul ruler would read a note that is in Guru Ji’s hand. So, the Mogul was order to cut his head off: and he did. When the ruler read the note that was in Guru Ji’s hand, he became furious. The not read. “Head off, but turban still on.” Thus the entire village was saved. Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s three sons preferred a slow death rather than convert to Islam. and Guru Arjan Dev Ji suffered his torturous death from Moguls

ਪੁਰਜਾ ਪੁਰਜਾ ਕਟਿ ਮਰੈ ਕਬਹੂ ਨ ਛਾਡੈ ਖੇਤੁ ॥2॥2॥
He may be cut apart, piece by piece, but he never leaves the field of battle. ||2||2||
When is a soldier ready for battle? After he is trained physically and psychologically, then he becomes aware of the reality of the potential dangers. Any wrong move or bad timing can be devastating. He should not hesitate in battle when he sees or experiences physical blows. Once the fighting stops, there is no escape. He must fight for his life as well as for his community. There is no room for giving up, regardless of the cost. This type of soldier requires spiritual maturity.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji gives another historical example on terrors of the Moguls. Awsw mhlw 1 ] (360) Kurwswn Ksmwnw kIAw, ihMdusqwnu frwieAw ] Having attacked Khuraasaan, Baabar terrified Hindustan. It was not enough for Baabar to slaughter Khuraasan; he had to invade Hindustan as well with the same genocides and tortures. AwpY dosu n dyeI krqw, jmu kir muglu cVwieAw ] “The Creator Himself does not take the blame, but has sent the Mugal as the messenger of death.” The opens the philosophical question, “Why did God allow terrorists to murder the innocent?” eyqI mwr peI krlwxy, qYN kI drdu n AwieAw ]1] “There was so much slaughter that the people screamed. Didn't You feel compassion, Lord?” People think that God does not exist because so many good people suffer in the hands of the wicked. The existence of God should not be the question here. One must ask how God allowed it to happen. The natural laws of the universe operate equally for all people, regardless of age, color, race, or beliefs. We are all created with the free ability of movements, but it is the power of nature that allows us to cause our brains to send commands to the rest of our body parts to do something. This shabad says that God sent the Mogul as the messenger of death. How did God send this Mogul? The natural laws of nature operated as they were created to. God did not have a desire to to evil. All His doings are perfect and complete. God does not need to send anything. A human sends things. This is a figure of speech that murder is one of many causes of death that are results of nature. Sometimes we die of disease, or ignorance by abusing our bodies with drugs and alcohol and smoking. Sometimes we die of natural disasters, such as the tsunamis or earthquakes. ||1|| krqw qUM sBnw kw soeI ] “O Creator Lord, You are the Master of all.” jy skqw skqy kau mwry, qw min rosu n hoeI ]1] rhwau ]” If some powerful man strikes out against another man, then no one feels any grief in their mind. ||1||Pause||” skqw sIhu mwry pY vgY, KsmY sw pursweI ] “But if a powerful tiger attacks a flock of sheep and kills them, then its master must answer for it.” Murders happen every day, but if many people are murdered in the same area like a flock of sheep, then people start to feel grief and fear, especially the mayor of the town. But God is concerned with each individual and each part of the universe He created. He makes sure that the cycles of the universe keep rotating. rqn ivgwiV ivgoey kuqIN, muieAw swr n kweI ] “This priceless country has been laid waste and defiled by dogs, and no one pays any attention to the dead.” Why are the dead ignored here? This is an example of a society suckered into greed and insensitivity to the needy. Greedy dogs have defiled a family, a town, or even a church, mosque, or gurdwara while the innocent members only have a small voice crying for justice. They are ignored by the greedy who exploit in the name of religion. Instead of fighting for justice, they sit back and say they don’t want to get involved in politics. If a committee is corrupt, God will punish them. This is a cop out excuse. We are to fight to protect the family, city, and gurdwara from corrupt Moguls dogs. don’t sit back and let the greedy posing and religious leaders exploit Sangat gifts. Awpy joiV ivCoVy Awpy, vyKu qyrI vifAweI ]2] “You Yourself unite, and You Yourself separate; I gaze upon Your Glorious Greatness. ||2||” God creates and maintains the stability of the natural laws of the universe. He causes things to join and to separate. Everything He does is a reflection of His glorious greatness. jy ko nwau Drwey vfw, swd kry min Bwxy ] “One may give himself a great name, and revel in the pleasures of the mind,” This is an example of the fool who thinks he does everything by himself, without the hukam of God which he never believed existed. KsmY ndrI kIVw AwvY, jyqy cugY dwxy ] “but in the Eyes of the Lord and Master, he is just a worm, for all the corn that he eats.” The manmukh continually acts in foolishness and is compared to a worm that is easiest prey to anything. It’s only defense is to dig into the dirt and hide; but even the dirt will not protect it. mir mir jIvY qw ikCu pwey, nwnk nwmu vKwxy ]3]5]39] “Only one who dies to his ego while yet alive, obtains the blessings, O Nanak, by chanting the Lord's Name. ||3||5||39||” What does it mean to die to one’s ego? This verse used die twice mir mir, so what can we learn from this? When someone dies, he does not get back up again, he stops breathing, moving, and thinking. When we learn to control our ego, we must not simply weaken it, but totally destroy it. The only way to defeat a terrorist army is to totally wipe is out, to kill them all. If you leave any survivors, they will build up strength to attack again. One cannot truly live a life of peace, happiness, and success if he ego is strong. What are the blessings that he gets from defeating his ego? Easily answered, it’s self control, poise, contentment, happiness, being able to function fully, worry free, you learn better, to get along better with your family, friends, and coworkers. You become more creative and relaxed. your learning and health improve. You make more logical decisions in life. You also start to share how to be this successful with other. You begin to care for others in a new way. How does chanting God’s name bring these blessings? Chanting God’s name does not mean literally repeating a phrase over and over again to get in to a hypnotic state. Chanting God’s name means to take the teachings of Shri Guru Granth Sahib and understand them, then let them saturate in your mind, keeping the awareness of this great enlightenment in our minds at all times, sitting, standing, walking, sleeping, and awake.

In conclusion. I have mentioned these two shabads about warfare and bloodshed because of the importance of the month dedicated to the Sahid for the sake of religious freedom. Since God has dedicated His entire essence to sustain us and the entire universe, we owe it to ourselves to protect the rights to teaching the meanings of Guru Granth Sahib to all people. Our short 500 years history of bloodshed, torture, and bravery have paid off to win humanity back to have the opportunity to meet God. We have dealt with forces against our faith under the disguise of Brahmanistic agents, fake Khalistani people, in which some are even terrorists, pakandi baba ji saints, these examples of pakandi fanatical groups that have been sponsored by Brahaministic leaders in India to re-Hinduize the Sikhs. Some of our gurdwaras are run like greedy businesses by greedy granthis and hypocritical ragies and some corrupt committees. We as a sangat must not sit back and let God punish them. God’s punishment is the natural course of things, where they will automatically pay for their evil. We must still fight for the rights of the gurdwaras, the town, and the home to be safe from these parayas, dogs. The dangers we face with these are far more worse than what the Moguls have done. We survived the dangers of the Moguls with our faith and understanding of Shri Guru Granth Sahib. Today, we live in an age where we can’t even get knowledge of Guru Ji, because we have no interest to learn, and the teachers available are untrained. All they do is read paath and make the money. Most of them can’t even explain the meanings, or don’t want to. If we lack Gur gian, then how will we ever fight our gravest danger, loss of identity and loss of Guru Ji teacher. We will then wander in ignorance, ruled by our tyrant five vices. So, we need to fight, be strong. Prepare our wars with the know how, develop our skills of righteousness, understanding, and courage. Let’s gets this movement going to promote Sri Guru Granth Sahib’s teachings to all people, not just Indians. This is our first hope, our only and our last hope. Just as God has no enemies, so must we not have any enemies. An enemy is one who is a threat to one’s life. God is not intimidated by inferior beings as us. He has no rivals, no one can compete with Him. His hukam is unbreakable. His hukam is truthfulness. When we meet God, then we also have no enemies. The greatest threat to man is his own ego and ignorance. People start to hate each other for greedy, selfish gain. Their blindness makes them totally unaware or simply insensitive to the hurts of others. They will find every clever deceiving trick and lie to dissuade to follow them. Many disguise themselves as holy saints, when they are nothing but fools who have lost the battle against their five vices and start manipulating others. When this common behavior gets out of hand, then the entire group is labeled with a bad reputation. Both the righteous and the wicked are identified together as deceivers. The bad apples in the group spoil the reputation of the entire group. Many Sikhs have immigrated to USA for a better life, but when some of them become enslaved to the US dollar, they begin to be corrupt. We Sikhs have a responsibility to learn Guru Granth Sahib’s wisdom and offer it to all people. If we are engrossed in high profit at the cost of hurting others, then we are misrepresenting the very scriptures that we bow down to. The function of the gurdwara is to offer a haven of tranquility through the education of the Shri Guru Granth Sahib Ji wisdom which follows with naam simran. Naam simran literally means to contemplate of the hukam of God and His glory. We remember the meanings in the Shabad and keep the power fuel of it in our minds to keep us alert day by day of the schemes of our five vices. This is very important to remember – that while we exist in the hukam of God, we never leave the battlefield. The only way to go is to victory fateh. If we listen to the plans of Almighty God’s hukam, if we give Shri Guru Granth Sahib Ji the chance to prove his perfection, then we will never lose the battle. You may be cut piece by piece with physical losses, insults, poverty, victim of slander and lies, but you still must fight. If you do not fight, then your loss increases. It does not stop with injurty. It does not stop with death. In every dimension of existence, we need the enlightenment of God, His word and power absorbed in our body and mind. God’s way in battle is the only way. We do not battle each other, but battle ignorance, ego, pride, lust, and over attachment. We must chose to be Shaitain or Gurmukh.

Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create an account on our community. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.

Shabad Vichaar by SPN'ers

This Shabd is composed by Guru Nanak ji in Asa Rag and is recorded on page 360 of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. The complete shabd is as follows.

ਖੁਰਾਸਾਨ ਖਸਮਾਨਾ ਕੀਆ ਹਿੰਦੁਸਤਾਨੁ...

SPN on Facebook