HOMECOMING

ਬਿਨੁ ਗੁਰ ਮੈਲੁ ਨ ਉਤਰੈ ਬਿਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਕਿਉ ਘਰ ਵਾਸੁ ॥:
Binu gur mailu na outarai binu hari kiou ghar vaasu:

Without the Gur (Giaan...), the pollution (of Mayaic efforts)
is not removed. Without the Lord, how can there be any
homecoming (ਅਡੋਲ ਅਵਸਥਾ, dwelling in the Mool within...)? (sggs 18).
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There is "homecoming" (spelled herein with small "h") and there is "Homecoming" (spelled herein with big "H")! The former is physical (for example, the home of parents, etc.) and the latter is Spiritual, the place of Healing within - the Mool (Source, Origin, Jot...)!

"homecoming" is when one returns or comes back to his worldly home. After school, work, travel, etc., we want to come back to our worldly home. Not only that, we never forget how to get there. Nothing wrong with it. It's a part of the living in the "midst of Maya", whilst we try to Grow (Spiritually) to go beyond the influence of the three modes of the material nature (Maya). Even birds come back to their nests in the evening, and animals to their dens.

"Homecoming" — "Ghar Vaasu" — is when we return to our Spiritual Center or the Mool within (Source, Origin, Jot...). This is indicated to be the real purpose of human birth. It's difficult for birds and animals to understand this. But we humans can; for we are endowed with a keen discerning intellect or Bibek Budhi.

The majority of us (the 99.9 percent category) having separated from our godly status ("Joti-svaroopa, Mool... ") have lost our way. We are given an opportunity in this human birth to reform (mend our ways to overcome latent tendencies and old habits) ourselves and return "Home" — "Ghar", "Nij Ghar", "Sach Ghar", "Nij Pada", "Thaan Suhaaiaa", "Chauthaa Pada", "Turiyaa", "Aap Pashaanai" or Self-realization, God-realization, Mool-realization, etc. — within.

Freedom from repeated suffering (Aavaa Gaman) is figuratively indicated as “Homecoming” and it is the birthright of every bonded Jeeva (individual being). The Homeward-bound soul is said to follow the path of Light (Spiritual Wisdom, Aatam-Giaan, Divine Knowledge, etc.). He enjoys great Anand (everlasting Bliss, Joy, rejoicing, etc) and is escorted to the Transcendental Realm (Sachkhand, etc.) within. Divine Knowledge (Spiritual Wisdom, Aatam-Giaan...) is indicated as supreme as it removes ignorance, which is the cause of bondage. All other knowledge is relative.

  • ਬਿਨੁ ਗੁਰ ਮੈਲੁ ਨ ਉਤਰੈ ਬਿਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਕਿਉ ਘਰ ਵਾਸੁ ॥: Binu gur mailu na outarai binu hari kiou ghar vaasu: Without the Gur (Giaan...), the pollution (of Mayaic efforts) is not removed. Without the Lord, how can there be any homecoming (ਅਡੋਲ ਅਵਸਥਾ, dwelling in the Mool within...)? (sggs 18).
  • ਇਹੁ ਸੰਸਾਰੁ ਬਿਕਾਰੁ ਸੰਸੇ ਮਹਿ ਤਰਿਓ ਬ੍ਰਹਮ ਗਿਆਨੀ ॥: Ihu sansaaru bikaaaru sanse mahi tario Brahm Giaanee: This world is engrossed in Bikaar and doubts (cynicism, ਸਹਸੇ, ਸਹਿਮ, ਭਰਮ....). Only the Brahm Giaanee (ਜਿਸ ਨੇ "ਪ੍ਰਾਤਮਾ" ਨਾਲ ਜਾਣ-ਪਛਾਣ ਪਾ ਲਈ) are saved (from these).

The SGGS stresses the absolute necessity of transcending the realm of the three-modes of material nature (Traiguna Maya: Saatav, Raajas and Taamas). SGGS says that the Chauthaa Pada (the Fourth State, Turiyaa or the state of Pure Awareness, which beyond Maya) is experienced only when the "Trikuti" of Maya is transcended. In other words, when the knot of the three qualities of Maya stands untied, the Tenth Gate (Dasam Duaar) opens up (Homecoming!). Hence, the sphere of Maya is wherein matter predominates over Spirit. In this sphere, thelaw of repeated suffering works in full swing. Therefore, SGGS accentuates one must go beyond Maya to come Home.

Going beyond Maya or the gross realm of material is synonymous with many other esoteric terms and expressions such as Sunn, Sunn Anaraagee, Sunn-Samaadhi, Sunn Kalaa, Panch-Shabad Jhunakaar, Shabad-Surti, Surati-Dhun, Ajappaa Jaap, Akul Niranjan Deethaa, Sachee Nagree, Baygumpuraa, Kundilini Surjhee, Siv Kee Puree, Sasi Ghari Soor, Siv Shakti, Anhata Naad, Anhata Dhuni, Anhata Shabad, Anhata Baaje, Anhata Bani, Anhata Beenaa, Anahad Benu, Anhata Run Jhun, Anhata Sunn, Ounman, Dhandhookaar Niraalam, Sat Saroop, Guptee Bani, Bees Ikees, Sat Saru, Sahaj-Avasthaa, Gurmukh state, understanding of Irhaa-Pingla-Sushumanaa, turning of the Heart-lotus upright, opening of the Tenth gate (Dasam-duaar), opening of Bajjar Kapaat, third eye, and so on.

  • ਨਉ ਦਰ ਠਾਕੇ ਧਾਵਤੁ ਰਹਾਏ ॥ ਦਸਵੈ ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਵਾਸਾ ਪਾਏ ॥ ਓਥੈ ਅਨਹਦ ਸਬਦ ਵਜਹਿ ਦਿਨੁ ਰਾਤੀ ਗੁਰਮਤੀ ਸਬਦੁ ਸੁਣਾਵਣਿਆ ॥੬॥: Naou dar thaake dhaavat rahaaye. Dasvai nij ghar vaasaa paaye ...: Those who close off the nine gates, and restrain the wandering mind, come to dwell in the Home of the Tenth Gate. There, the Unstruck Melody of the Shabad vibrates day and night. Through the Guru's Teachings, the Shabad is heard. ||6|| (sggs 124).
  • ਇੜਾ ਪਿੰਗਲਾ ਸੁਖਮਨਾ ਲੰਘ ਤ੍ਰਿਬੇਨੀ ਨਿਜ ਘਰ ਆਵੈ ॥: Irhaa pingalaa sukhamanaa langh tribenee nij ghar aavai: Go beyond the Triveni of Irhaa, Pingalaa and Sushumanaa and stablize in your own Self (Vaar Bhai Gurdaas).
  • ਆਪੁ ਪਛਾਣੈ ਘਰਿ ਵਸੈ ਹਉਮੈ ਤ੍ਰਿਸਨਾ ਜਾਇ ॥: Aap pashaanai ghar vasai houmai thrisanaa jaai: Through realizing the (True) Self, people dwell within the Home of their inner being and their ego and desire depart (sggs 57).
  • ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਵਸਿਆ ਗੁਣ ਗਾਇ ਅਨੰਤਾ ॥ ਪ੍ਰਭੁ ਮਿਲਿਓ ਨਾਨਕ ਭਏ ਅਚਿੰਤਾ ॥: Nij ghar vasiaa gun gaai anantaa. Prabh milio Nanak bhaye achintaa: (sggs 371).
  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਸੇਵਹਿ ਸਦਾ ਮਨਿ ਦਾਸਾ ॥ ਹਉਮੈ ਮਾਰਿ ਕਮਲੁ ਪਰਗਾਸਾ ॥ ਅਨਹਦੁ ਵਾਜੈ ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਵਾਸਾ ॥ ਨਾਮਿ ਰਤੇ ਘਰ ਮਾਹਿ ਉਦਾਸਾ ॥੩॥: Satiguru sevahi sadaa mani daasaa. Haumai maari kamalu pargaasaa. Anhadu vaajai nij ghari vaasaa. Naami ratae ghar maahi udaasaa ||3|| (sggs 126).

The SGGS indicates that the Reality of our Being or our True Home is within us, here and now (Haajraa Hajoor). So there is nowhere to go! That is, "Bande Khoj" or "Mann Khoj Maarag" is the journey within: inner search!

Accordingly, the SGGS time and again reminds us to look inwards to know the Reality. However, with awareness externalized, we are unable to see it. Consciousness of most of us is being attuned to the physical aspect of life, makes it hard to believe or accept the simple Truth that everything is within the body. It is the deceitful nature of the outgoing mind that shield this Truth from us. The SGGS indicates that all we need is a pure, calm, or silent (Haume-free) mind to experience it. But, the truth is that our mind is never silent or still. So our mind is never found there. It is always somewhere else, lost wandering in the glitter of the world (Maya). Hence the Real Home remains empty. It wants us to come back and occupy it, but we are always somewhere else, thus keep missing it. As indicated in the SGGS, "Joti-svaroopa" is our Originality, our very Being. Everything else comes and goes... this Reality always is, changeless in midst of the changefulness.

  • ਬੰਦੇ ਖੋਜੁ ਦਿਲ ਹਰ ਰੋਜ ਨਾ ਫਿਰੁ ਪਰੇਸਾਨੀ ਮਾਹਿ ॥: O human being, search your own heart every day, and do not wander around in confusion (sggs 727).
  • ਮਨ ਖੋਜਿ ਮਾਰਗੁ ॥: Mann khoj maarag: mwrgu: O mind, seek out the way! (sggs 71).

The SGGS shows us the way to get established in the Inner Home. A mind free of passions (Bikaars, etc.) is indicated to be an innocent and pure mind (empty of Haume but full of "Joti-svaroopa"). To the contrary, a mind full of passions is indicated to be a corrupt and impure mind (empty of Awareness, but full of Maya).

So the SGGS urges us dropping our passions and becoming the Gurmukh (Spiritual or Enlightened Being). The Gurmukh leads Spiritual Life (also called Inner, Divine or Eternal Life); for he knows that only by knowing one's True Nature one can overcome material afflictions (passions), and become eternally Blissful. Hence, the one with Spiritual outlook spend their time and energy on the Spiritual Path (Aatam-Maarag) practicing Shabad-Vichaar to gain Divine Knowledge (Aatam Giaan). How it's possible?

The analogy of watching pictures on the television screen will be helpful to further appreciate this. The screen is fixed, whilst the pictures move in it. However, the screen remains unaffected by the movement of these pictures. Likewise, the True Home is the changeless Center within; the waking, dream and sleep states are mere movement in it. The Gurmukh (Spiritually Awakened) is fully aware that the true state of his inner Being ever remains unmodified and that all activities go on around him; hence he considers only the screen and not the moving pictures. To silent or to arrest the mind is easier said than done. The mind is ever changing. It is restless, unsteady and imbalanced. That's why our thoughts, emotions, fears, and worries are ever unsteady and changing. Accordingly, the SGGS urges us becoming the Gurmukh (egoless being) and arresting (conquering or annihilating) the mind and making it intuitively balanced and steady (purified). The wobbling and unsteady mind is indicated to become steady when it has realized its essence or True Nature as Pure Consciousness. Therefore, in the Gurmat (Aatam Giaan of the Gurbani), true understanding or right viewpoint is said to be the key.

  • ਜਿਨੀ ਸੁਣਿ ਕੈ ਮੰਨਿਆ ਤਿਨਾ ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਵਾਸੁ ॥: Jinee suni kai manniaa tinaa nij ghare vaas: Those who hear and believe, find the home of the Self deep Within (sggs 27).
  • ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਕਾਰ ਕਮਾਵਣੀ ਸਚੁ ਘਟਿ ਪਰਗਟੁ ਹੋਇ ॥ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਜਿਸ ਕੈ ਸਚੁ ਵਸੈ ਸਚੇ ਸਚੀ ਸੋਇ ॥ ਸਚਿ ਮਿਲੇ ਸੇ ਨ ਵਿਛੁੜਹਿ ਤਿਨ ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਵਾਸਾ ਹੋਇ ॥: Gurmukhi kaar kamaavanee sach ghati pargat hoi ...: The Gurmukh practices good deeds, and the truth is revealed in his heart. True is the reputation of the true, Within whom truth abides. Those who meet God are not separated again; they come to dwell in the home of the Self deep Within (sggs 27).
  • ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਵਾਸਾ ਪਾਏ ਸਬਦੁ ਵਜਾਏ ਸਦਾ ਸੁਹਾਗਣਿ ਨਾਰੀ ॥: Nij ghar vaasaa paaeae sabad vajaaeae sadaa suhaagan naaree: Obtaining an abode in the home of her inner being, she vibrates the Word of the Shabad, and is a happy Soul-bride forever (sggs 568).
  • ਸੁਖ ਦੁਖ ਹੀ ਤੇ ਅਮਰੁ ਅਤੀਤਾ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਨਿਜ ਘਰੁ ਪਾਇਦਾ ॥: Sukh dukh hee te amar ateetaa Gurmukh nij ghar paaidaa: By becoming the Gurmukh, become Immortal, and remain untouched by pleasure and pain. He obtains the Eternal Home of his own Inner Being within (sggs 1037).
  • ਮਨਮੁਖ ਮਾਇਆ ਮੋਹਿ ਵਿਆਪੇ ਦੂਜੈ ਭਾਇ ਮਨੂਆ ਥਿਰੁ ਨਾਹਿ ॥: Manmukh Maya mohi viaape doojai bhaai manooaa thir naahi: The Manmukhs (ego-beings) are engrossed in emotional attachment to Maya; in the love of duality, their minds are unsteady (sggs 652).
  • ਨਾਨਕ ਆਪੈ ਆਪੁ ਪਛਾਣੈ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਤਤੁ ਬੀਚਾਰੀ ॥: Nanak aapai aap pashaanai gurmukh tata beechaaree: O Nanak, by becoming the Gurmukh, realize your (True) Self and reflect on the essence of Reality (sggs 1112).

But, this "Home" within is not palpable and its existence can only be inferred by the seeker. A seeker can reach a certain stage on his own. To progress beyond in this inner search, the Gur-Giaan is needed to guide him further. If approached with reverence, patience, enthusiasm, faith and sincerity, Shabad-Vichaar will clarify one's doubts and will impart the Divine Knowledge (Aatam Giaan) unto him. The Gur-Shabad deals with spiritual Knowledge, which removes ignorance that causes bondage and mistaken identity with the limited (finite) body-mind-intellect personality obscuring one's eternal spiritual nature ("Joti-svaroopa, Mool... "). The SGGS indicates that when the dirt (of passions, ego or Haume, Maya, etc.) is removed from the "mirror" of the mind, the True Home will manifest itself. To say it otherwise, when the mind attains the Purity of the Naam, instantly the Home is there just as bringing of the light spells sudden disappearance of the darkness!

  • ਬਿਨੁ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦ ਨ ਆਪੁ ਪਛਾਣੈ ਬਿਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮ ਨ ਕਾਲੁ ਟਰੇ ॥: Bin gur sabad na aap pashaanai bin har naam na kaal tare: Without (practicing) the Gur-Shabad, one does not undersand his (True) Self. Without the Lord's Name, death (fear of death) cannot be avoided (sggs 1014).
  • ਗੁਰਮਤੀ ਆਪੈ ਆਪੁ ਪਛਾਣੈ ਤਾ ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਵਾਸਾ ਪਾਵੈ ॥: Guramatee aapai aap pashaanai taa nij ghar vaasaa paavai: Under Guru's Instruction, one comes to understand his (True) Self, and then, he comes to dwell in the Home of his inner Self (sggs 565).
  • ਗੁਰ ਪਰਸਾਦੀ ਆਪੁ ਪਛਾਣੈ ॥: Gur parasaadee aap pashaanai: By the Grace of the Gur (Giaan), (he) Recognizes ownself (ਆਪਣੇ ਆਪ ਨੂੰ ਪਛਾਣ ਲੈਣਾਂ). (sggs 88).
  • ਇਹੁ ਮਨੁ ਆਰਸੀ ਕੋਈ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਵੇਖੈ ॥ ਮੋਰਚਾ ਨ ਲਾਗੈ ਜਾ ਹਉਮੈ ਸੋਖੈ ॥ ਅਨਹਤ ਬਾਣੀ ਨਿਰਮਲ ਸਬਦੁ ਵਜਾਏ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦੀ ਸਚਿ ਸਮਾਵਣਿਆ ॥੪॥: Ihu manu aarsee koee Gurmukhi vekhai ...: This mind is like a mirror (or looking-glass, through which one can see his Mool, Source, Originality, Authentic Nature, Jot-Svaroop, ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ, etc., but); hardly any by becoming the Gurmukh (Spiritual Being...) sees himself in it. The rust (of ego or Haume, Maya...) does not stick to (the mind of him who becomes the Gurmukh and) burns his ego (and, with ego burnt, he can see himself through this mind-mirror). The Unstruck Melody of the Bani, the Pure Shabad resounds (within the Gurmukh); through the Gur-Shabad, (the Gurmukh) remains absorbed in the Truth ||4|| (sggs 115).

— T. Singh
www.gurbani.org