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Haumein And Ego

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by Taranjeet singh, Feb 21, 2010.

  1. Taranjeet singh

    Taranjeet singh India
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    SPNer Thinker

    Oct 21, 2009
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    Ego and Implications​

    Ego has been stated as ‘Haumein’ in Gurbani and it has been stated that the seeker should sub-due it and at places to eliminate it if possible. It may be considered as selfishness and self conceit as the various translators have interpreted it. Taking a clue from the number of times this term has appeared in Bani, It can be assumed that the message that the Guru sahibs had to convey represents that it is slightly more than egocentricity. Let us look at some other ‘tuks’ that deal with the aspect of Ego. The following line states that in ‘haumein’ every one is driven to the state of irrationality.

    haumY ivic sBu jgu baurwnw ] (3, 159-11)

    Specific attention is drawn to the ‘tuk’ that states that ‘ego’ in itself is a disease but it has some element of its treatment.

    haumY dIrG rogu hY dwrU BI iesu mwih ] 466-18)

    It is by subduing and overcoming the ‘ego’ that one’s mind gets the illumination of divine knowledge.

    haumY mwir kmlu prgwsw ] (3, 161-18)

    The point to be stressed is whether Guru-sahib is stating “haumeni’ as the ‘ego’ as is understood in the conventional sense. Let us look at the dictionary meaning of ego and the related words like egotism etc.

    A related shabad and analysis​

    soriT mhlw 5 pMcpdw ](616)
    ibnsY mohu myrw Aru qyrw ibnsY ApnI DwrI]1]sMqhu iehw bqwvhu kwrI]ijqu haumY grbu invwrI]1]rhwau]srb BUq pwrbRhm kir mwinAw hovw sgl rynwrI]2]pyiKa pRB jIau Apuny sMgy cUkY BIiq BRmwrI]3]AauKDu nwmu inrml jlu AMimRq pweIAY gurU duAwrI]4]khu nwnk ijsu msqik iliKAw iqsu guir imil rog ibdwrI]5]

    In this Shabad, Satguru Ji is talking about one of the biggest evils that we have inside of us. That evil is ego. All of us have ego inside of us and Guru Ji says that ego keeps us away from finding the Almighty God.
    ibnsY mohu myrw Aru qyrw ibnsY ApnI DwrI]1]

    Destroy my attachment to ego, which makes me think that this is mine and this is yours and end my love with this world.

    In the first line of this shabad (hymn), Satguru Ji explains that we need to destroy the ego that is inside of us because it is an obstacle between us and God:

    Dn ipr kw iek hI sMig vwsw ivic haumY BIiq krwrI]


    The bride (soul) and the husband (God) are separated by the wall of ego.
    hau hau BIiq BieE hY bIco sunq dyis inktwieE ]


    The wall of egotism and pride separates us, but I can hear Him nearby.
    Satguru Ji has said that this pain of Ego is within all humans:
    haumY rogu mwnuK ko dInw]

    Humans are given the disease of ego.

    There are many more lines in Gurbani which tell us that this ego is a very big disease:
    haumY rogu vfw sMswr]
    haumY rogu kiTn qin pIrw]

    When we get ego inside of us, then we forget God. We think that we are doing everything and forget that Almighty God who is in control of everything:

    hau bMDau hau swDau bYr]hmrI BUim kaux GwlY pYru]hau pMifqu hau cqur isAwxw]krxYhwru nw buJY ibgwnw]


    Filled with ego we say “I shall tie up my enemy, and I shall cut him down. Who dares to set foot upon my land?” They say “I am learned, I am clever and wise." The ignorant ones do not recognize their creator.
    So it is very necessary that we break from this wall of ego inside of ourselves.

    Satguru Ji then says:

    sMqhu iehw bqwvhu kwrI ] ijqu haumY grbu invwrI ]1] rhwau ]

    O Saints, show me such a way, by which my egotism and pride might be eliminated. ||1||Pause||

    We must break from this ego because:
    haumY nwvY nwil ivroDu hY duie n vsih iek Twie ]

    Ego is opposed to the Name of the Lord; the two cannot dwell in the same place.

    Satguru Ji explains that Seva and Simran cannot be done if we have ego inside of ourselves. That is not true seva and simran:
    haumY ivic syvw n hoveI qw mnu ibrQw jwie ]1]

    In egotism, selfless service cannot be performed, and so the soul goes unfulfilled.

    If we wish to meet our husband, God, then we must destroy our ego:
    haumY jweI qw kMq smweI ]

    But if she gets rid of her ego, then she merges in her Husband Lord.
    srb BUq pwrbRhmu kir mwinAw hovW sgl rynwrI ]2]


    Show me the method with which I can see the Supreme Lord God in all beings, and I become the dust of all.

    pyiKE pRB jIau ApunY sMgy cUkY BIiq BRmwrI ]3]


    That method with which I can see God always with me, and the wall of doubt can be shattered.

    AauKDu nwmu inrml jlu AMimRqu pweIAY gurU duAwrI ]4]


    The medicine of the Naam, and the Immaculate Water of Ambrosial Nectar, are obtained through the Guru's Gate.

    Guru Ji explains that the Name of God is the medicine which can break us from ego and which makes us become humble. This Name of God can only be obtained through the true Guru.

    khu nwnk ijsu msqik iliKAw iqsu gur imil rog ibdwrI ]5]17]28]


    Says Nanak, one who has such pre-ordained destiny written upon his forehead, meets with the Guru, and his diseases are cured.


    ::::Sikh and ego article ::::

    From the above shabad, esp the last line, one can draw the inference that ‘haumein’ is cured if one meets the Guru and has such a pre-ordained destiny. It cannot be rooted out by the mortal, the poor creature. It may not be the simple pride or ‘Ahamkaar’ that we understand in the ordinary parlance.

    Other Words of Bani to be considered to understand the meaning of ‘Haumein’

    The words that we have to take into account are contained in the following line that cannot be missed by any seeker.

    nwnk sohM hMsw jpu jwphu iqRBvx iqsY smwih ]1] (1093-3, mwrU, mÚ 1)

    O Nanak, chant the chant of 'Sohang hansaa' - 'He is me, and I am Him.' The three worlds are absorbed in Him. ||

    The line has a very specific meaning and is similar to the philosophy that existed at the point of time when the Granth sahib was compiled.

    Analysis: Deriving the meaning from the above Line

    Tempted to look into further on account of the above line the term ‘ego’ can be looked on from different microscope of the philosophy that was prevalent. The above line is of significance. It states that we should practice that ‘I am that’ and what is ‘that’; ‘that’ that is He and thus ‘I am He’. It would imply that that ‘I’ am not that I consider to be that I consider that is body and mind. The individual is not body and mind. The association of the individual with the body and mind that is unreal shall not qualify for the statement that is ‘I am He’. He is ‘sat’ or real or should be formless. Thus the association of I with the body and mind seems to be incorrect. In essence ‘I am He’ would imply that ‘I’ is to be attached with the all-potent formless consciousness of the lord and we have a particle of this formless consciousness in the form of the soul that is also a pure consciousness and is also formless. This is what the ‘I stands’ for in my opinion. It would be in order to say that I am also consciousness and hence the identification of the self with the body and mind may not be correct. The correct approach is that the self is to be seen as identified with the pure consciousness tat is within this body. If one can locate it and can really realize it ,it would amount to self-realization and there would not be any further investigation required.

    Once this is understood the rest should follow.

    qU Awpy krqw qyrw kIAw sBu hoie ] quDu ibnu dUjw Avru n koie ] (4, 365-18)

    You are the Doer and everything is done by you.There is no one else.[It is a crude definition or translation done by me to make it fit into the discussion]

    The doer ship is transferred from the self to Him.

    Another Line that supports the above is as follows:

    Awpy krqw Awpy Bugqw ] Awpy sMjmu Awpy jugqw ] (1, 1047-17)

    Let us take another line to this effect:

    sBnI Cwlw mwrIAw krqw kry su hoie ] (1, 469-5)


    Egoism as stated in Bani should mean that we should stop identifying ourselves to the mind and body that are unreal. Our real self is the consciousness and that being a part of the ‘super-consciousness’ is to be attached to that is happening around us and may be through our body. This feeling that I am the doer is the ‘ego’ and is to be subdued an is to be replaced by That He is doing everything and ourselves are only by lane spectators only.

    It is from this concept that one can further explore the concept of duality.


    Taranjeet singh

    Bhul chuk Mauf
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  3. Bhai Harbans Lal

    Bhai Harbans Lal
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    Sep 24, 2004
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    Hukam and Haumail

    ffice:eek:ffice" /><?"urn:[​IMG]I appreciate Ravinder ji’s intent to discuss Hukam and Haumai together. However, in this discussion I notice an underlying constraint that is preventing us from full appreciation of these two inter-related concepts.

    The constraint is the assumption of anthropomorphic god and thus anthropological topology of god concepts. It presupposes a framework of analysis based on limited human understanding of a super-human like god. God may work in ways that seem mysterious to human mind; god’s inhumanity may be part of a full picture that we cannot see.

    Haumai is neither ego nor ahamkar; it is also neither sin nor pride (garb); it does not lend itself for translation in English.

    Haumai is another side of the coin with Hukam on its other side. Haumai poses as a malady waiting to be treated. Hukam and Haumai are incompatible. Therefore Hukam consciousness is considered a panacea to cure Haumai consciousness. Guru Nanak tells us that

    nwnk hukmY jy buJY q hauumY khY n koie (SGGS p. 1).

    Haumai may be a tool of our inner soul to make contact with outside world of maya..

    The term haumai is derived from two Sanskrit source-words: ham and mamma, meaning ‘I’ and ‘my’ thus literally meaning the experience of, ‘I ‘-ness and ‘my-ness.

    In the delusion of I-ness and my-ness, wanders the whole world, says GGS p. 841.

    In a reply to Sidha yogis, Guru Nanak said, the world comes into being through haumai (GGS p. 916); Impelled by haumai Creation takes place (GGS p. 466).

    Perhaps, haumai is a mental faculty to recognize our surface experiences that is devoid of any familiarity with the deeper expanses of animal or human reality. Gurbani says, Absorbed in enjoyment of venomous pleasures, the blind human realizes not his errors, reaping the fruits of haumai his whole life passes (GGS p. 242).
    Further, even pious acts performed in haumai ultimately become only bondage (GGS p.242). Haumai separates human consciousness from god consciousness. The ‘wife’ and her Divine Spouse occupy the same bed, between them; however, the tough wall of haumai stands (GGS p. 1263).

    In nutshell, haumai is a malady, which is characteristic of manmukh, or a person turned towards human self in contrast to a gurmukh meaning one oriented towards divine wisdom. The wretched manmukh understands not Divine Ordinance, Impelled by haumai, he toils ever (GGS p. 1423).

    Gurmat then asks us to look for the remedy by which the source of maladies should vanish (GGS p. 1279). There comes the role of living in the Hukam.

    The doctrine of Hukamprovides us with a sense of universe as the God’s blueprint. It consists of the laws operative in the qudrat; physical and biological laws of nature that the creator set in gears to be fashioned by nature and the nature’s creation and creatures. In that sense, we are not passive observers of reality; instead, we are creators in a partnership with the Creator God. Guru Arjun (GGS p. 1141) said, My Father has revealed Himself within me. In this way, the Father and son have joined in partnership.

    What fun! Our challenge is to break free of our present concept of a false and passive reality to create brand new dreams that will bring the ultimate to life through human creativity.

    Harbans Lal comments on Sikhchic.com discussion
    • Like Like x 1
    #2 Bhai Harbans Lal, Feb 21, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 10, 2015
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