Reincarnation | Sikh Philosophy Network
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Dec 9, 2007
Hello Everybody, Waheguru Ji ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji ke Fateh.
This is my first post and hope I will be posting regularly. As you can see the title I will be talking about reincarnation. For sometime now I have noticed on different sites that there is some kind of confusion or misunderstanding about reincarnation in Sikhism. I have read questions like " Do Sikhism believe in Reincarnation?, How many times you have to die as a cat before becoming human form?, etc" My sole purpose is to present the idea of reincarnation as I have understood it and I will be providing Gurbani's lines just to make myself clear.

First of all we have to understand what are we composed of. We have three things in us that makes us. Our body, our mind(mann) and our soul.
Soul is part of GOD therefore it remains unaffected by our thoughts and actions. Soul is like an energy that provides life to our material body.Our body is made of material things and as we die the body ceases to exist. Now comes our mind(mann), also we can say it our ego, this is where desire comes, hopes and worry comes, pain and pleasure comes.
It is our mind(mann or ego) that experience pain and pleasure, happiness and sorrow, hopes and worries.It is our mind(mann or ego) that is stuck in this cycle of reincarnation.

Every living creature has life. Soul is present in all the creatures so is the mind(mann).Soul being part of GOD has nothing to do with what goes around.It is the mind(mann) which perform actions either mentally or physically or both.
Reincarnation simply put is the law of cause and effect.As I perform action I get the result of that action.If my actions are good I get better life and if I continue to perform good action while meditating on the GOD, I get to a point where I escape this cycle of death and rebirth and have spiritual union with GOD.On the other hand if my actions are bad, I will keep coming back in different life forms depending on my actions.What happened was, with all due respect, since in Hinduism there was division of society into four groups that is Brahmin, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras. When a child would born in Brahmin family they would say he must have done something good in his past lives so he is born in Brahmin family whereas if a child is born in Vaishyas family it would be consider that you must have done bad things so you are born in Vaishyas. And reincarnation fits very well with this because reincarnation is you get what you do and things kept going untill Guru Nanak came. Guru Nanak rejected this idea.Guru Nanak rejected the whole idea of caste system but reincarnation remains as it is. There are two types of actions which governs my life. Actions from my past lives and the actions I am doing right now in this life.And though we may have different actions in our past lives, but once we are born in this human form we all have the same and equal abilities irrespective of our origin, color,gender,race. This thing was not allowed in caste system as it was considered to be predetermined but thats not how it should have been. The society itself created caste system and put reincarnation in it. Past and present life's actions simply have a bearing upon a specific individual.Reincarnation in no way makes one superior to another. Some lines from the "SIRI GURU GRANTH SAHIB":
ਕਰਮੀ ਆਵੈ ਕਪੜਾ ਨਦਰੀ ਮੋਖੁ ਦਆੁ ਰ ੁ ॥
karmee aavai kaprhaa nadree mokh du-aar.
By the karma of past actions, the robe of this physical body is obtained. By His Grace,
the Gate of Liberation is found.
ਨਾਨਕ ਹਕੁ ਮੀ ਆਵਹ ੁ ਜਾਹ ੁ ॥੨੦॥
naanak hukmee aavhu jaahu. ||20||
O Nanak, by the Hukam of God's Command, we come and go in reincarnation.
ਿਨਜ ਘਿਰ ਮਹਲੁ ਪਾਵਹ ੁ ਸੁਖ ਸਹਜੇ ਬਹਿੁ ਰ ਨ ਹੋਇਗੋ ਫੇਰਾ ॥੩॥
nij ghar mahal paavhu sukh sehjay bahur na ho-igo fayraa. ||3||
Within the home of your own inner being, you shall obtain the Mansion of the Lord's
Presence with intuitive ease. You shall not be consigned again to the wheel of
ਲੇਖਾ ਇਕੋ ਆਵਹ ੁ ਜਾਹ ੁ ॥੧॥
laykhaa iko aavhu jaahu. ||1||
According to the account of our actions, we come and go in reincarnation.
ਦੂਜੈ ਭਾਇ ਕੋ ਨਾ ਿਮਲੈ ਿਫਿਰ ਿਫਿਰ ਆਵੈ ਜਾਇ ॥
doojai bhaa-ay ko naa milai fir fir aavai jaa-ay.
No one merges with Him through the love of duality; over and over again, they come
and go in reincarnation.
ਲਖ ਚਉਰਾਸੀਹ ਫੇਰ ੁ ਪਇਆ ਕਾਮਿਣ ਦਜੂ ੈ ਭਾਇ ॥
lakh cha-oraaseeh fayr pa-i-aa kaaman doojai bhaa-ay.
The soul-bride in love with duality goes around the wheel of reincarnation, through
8.4 million incarnations.
ਭਰਿਮ ਭੁਲਾਣਾ ਅੰਧੁਲਾ ਿਫਿਰ ਿਫਿਰ ਆਵੈ ਜਾਇ ॥
bharam bhulaanaa anDhulaa fir fir aavai jaa-ay.
Wandering in doubt, the spiritually blind come and go in reincarnation, over and over
ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮੁ ਸਾਲਾਿਹ ਤੂ ਿਫਿਰ ਆਵਣ ਜਾਣੁ ਨ ਹੋਇ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥
raam naam saalaahi too fir aavan jaan na ho-ay. ||1|| rahaa-o.
Praise the Lord's Name, and you shall no longer come and go in reincarnation.
ਭਏ ਿਕਰਪਾਲ ਠਾਕੁਰ ਰਿਹਓ ਆਵਣ ਜਾਣਾ ॥
bha-ay kirpaal thaakur rahi-o aavan jaanaa.
Becoming Merciful, my Lord and Master has ended my comings and goings in
ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰ ਸਰਣਾਗਤੀ ਮਰੈ ਨ ਆਵੈ ਜਾਇ ॥੪॥੩੦॥੧੦੦॥
naanak gur sarnaagatee marai na aavai jaa-ay. ||4||30||100||
Nanak seeks the Sanctuary of the Guru, who does not die, or come and go in
ਆਤਮ ਮਿਹ ਰਾਮੁ ਰਾਮ ਮਿਹ ਆਤਮੁ ਚੀਨਿਸ ਗੁਰ ਬੀਚਾਰਾ ॥
aatam meh raam raam meh aatam cheenas gur beechaaraa.
The Lord is in the soul, and the soul is in the Lord. This is realized through the Guru's
ਆਤਮ ਦੇਉ ਦੇਉ ਹੈ ਆਤਮੁ ਰਿਸ ਲਾਗੈ ਪੂਜ ਕਰੀਜੈ ॥੧॥
aatam day-o day-o hai aatam ras laagai pooj kareejai. ||1||
The soul is divine; divine is the soul. Worship Him with love.Hope this clarifies. Thanking you.

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Shabad Vichaar by SPN'ers

These are saloks of Sant Kabir ji. They appear on Ang 1369. There is no rehao. The translation is by Dr. Sant Singh Khalsa. spnadmin

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