In this material world, bridges (“ਸੇਤੁ”) are seen built to go acrooss something. For example, a bridge is a link between one side of the river to the other side.
Similarly, a bridge is also needed to go across the Sansaar (visible, Mayaic world, Form-ਆਕਾਰ) to the Nirankaar World (Invisible World, which is beyond Maya, Formless-ਨਿਰਾਕਾਰ).
Simply put,the Gurmati, Gur-Updesh, Shabad, Naam, Aatm Giaan, etc., (Gurmukhataa) is akin to a subtle bridge between the Niraakar (Source, Mool, Nij Ghar, Unseen…) and the Sansaar (the place of repeated suffering).
How can one build such subtle bridge, which cannot be seen by the physical receptors?
The Gurbani tells us that we all can build this bridge that connects Sansaar with the Niraakaaree World (of Bidhaataa, ਸਚ, etc.) by becoming the Gurmukhi – by becoming one with the Gurmati, by becoming one with the Truth or ਸਚ, By becoming one with the Shabad or Naam, by becoming one with the Viveka, and so on. ( ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਬਾਂਧਿਓ ਸੇਤੁ ਬਿਧਾਤੈ ॥: Gurmukh baandhio setu bidhaatai, sggs 946).
Then one can go across to his Real Home in the Niraakaar World within (“Nij Ghar”, Joti-Svaroopa, ਸਚ, etc.). This is to say that, without Realizing the Essence of the Shabad within (Naam, Hukam, etc.), one can not link with his True Being within.
In nutshell, the Gurbani is the Aatam-Giaan (Gur-Updesh, Gurmati…). The purpose of Prema-Bhagti, Naam-Simran, etc., is to make the mind understand and digest this Aatam-Giaan through the unbroken Shabad-Vichaar; followed by a lifestyle based on this Giaan (live the Gurmati, Hukam-Mannanaa, ਭਾਣਾਂ ਮੰਨਣਾਂ, etc.).
- ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਸਾਚੈ ਰਹੈ ਸਮਾਏ ॥: Gurmukh saachai rahai samaae: By becoming the Gurmukhi, (one) remains absorbed in ਸਚ-Truth (sggs 942).
Otherwise, what’s the use of reasoning and intellectuality; or reading Gurbani and listening to its recitations (or any other scriptures for that matter); or talking about religion, Dharma, spirituality, Truth, ਸਚ…?
- ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਹੈ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੋ ਦੇਇ ਦ੍ਰਿੜਾਇ ॥: The Gur-Giaan (Spiritual Wisdom…) is the Naam Padaarath. (Hence, the Guru) makes the Hari Naam firm (resolved, stable, strong, properly understood, ਪੱਕਾ, ਦ੍ਰਿੜ, etc., in the mind of the sincere seeker of Truth – ਜਗ੍ਯਾਸੂ…). (sggs 759).
- ਤੀਰਥੁ ਸਬਦ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਹੈ ॥: To Reflect on the Shabad (Shabad-Vichaar) is the pilgrimage (because of this) Spiritual Wisdom arises within. (sggs 687).
But, as the Gurbani asserts, rare is the one who becomes the Gurmukh and reflects on the True Shabad (Naam-Aatm Giaan…) within. Stumbling around in delusion, the rest of us just keep searching It in the gross objects of the mirage-like enchanting, perishable or changeful world – Maya!
- ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਸਾਚੁ ਸਬਦੁ ਬੀਚਾਰੈ ਕੋਇ ॥: Rare is the one who, by becoming a Gurmukh (Spiritual Being…), reflects on the True Shabad (sggs 946).