Crow-Mind

When the Truth that has not been personally experienced, one can not grasp it directly. However, with the help of examples, analogies, similes, allegories, metaphors, figurative or mystic representations and illustrations, the Truth becomes relatively easier to grasp. Such methods have extensively been used in the Gurbani SGGS.

Consider the following verse of the Gurbani:

  • ਕਊਆ ਕਹਾ ਕਪੂਰ ਚਰਾਏ ॥ ਕਹ ਬਿਸੀਅਰ ਕਉ ਦੂਧੁ ਪੀਆਏ ॥੨॥: Offering camphor (ਕਪੂਰ, a fragrant grass) to a crow is of no avail (because his habit of eating filth will not go away – ਕਾਂ ਦੀ ਗੰਦ/ਵਿਸਟਾ ਖਾਣ ਦੀ ਆਦਤ ਨਹੀਂ ਜਾ ਸਕਦੀ)? (Similarly) feeding a snake on milk is of no avail (because he will not stop biting – his poison will only grow)? ||2|| (sggs 481).

Here, crow (ਕਊਆ, ਕਾਂ) is likened to the Manmukh (Saakat, Mayadhaaree, self-willed, mammon-worshiper, one separated from his Mool or Truth…) who’s conditioned mind has become black (filthy) with Bikaars (lust, anger, greed, etc.).

Camphor (ਕਪੂਰ – Kapoor) is likened to the Gurmukh. The Gurmukh is totally opposite of the Manmukh, Saakat, Mayadhaaree...

A crow enjoys filth, therefore, its beak is always in the ordure! Its unpleasant sound of “kaaon kaaon” resembles the speech of a wrathful person.

The Gurbani indicates that, without churning the Gurbani or without the true Shabad-Vichaar, one is a self-murderer and his mind is like that of a crow, snake, a mad dog, a donkey, a stork, etc. (i.e., a Manmukh).

  • ਕਲਰ ਕੇਰੀ ਛਪੜੀ ਕਊਆ ਮਲਿ ਮਲਿ ਨਾਇ ॥ ਮਨੁ ਤਨੁ ਮੈਲਾ ਅਵਗੁਣੀ ਚਿੰਜੁ ਭਰੀ ਗੰਧੀ ਆਇ ॥ ਸਰਵਰੁ ਹੰਸਿ ਨ ਜਾਣਿਆ ਕਾਗ ਕੁਪੰਖੀ ਸੰਗਿ ॥ ਸਾਕਤ ਸਿਉ ਐਸੀ ਪ੍ਰੀਤਿ ਹੈ ਬੂਝਹੁ ਗਿਆਨੀ ਰੰਗਿ ॥: The crow (Bikaaree or Mayaic mind…) rubs and washed itself in the pool of the saline land (pool of Bikaaar). (As a result) the mind and body remains polluted with demerits (Bikaar, delimited consciousness…), just as a crow’s beak always remains filled with filth. Associating with the crow-minded (i.e., Saakat: those separated from their Mool, Mayadhaaree, Manmukh …), the soul-swan did not respect the Sarovar (i.e., the Pool of the Gur-Giaan or Wisdom). Such is the love with the Saakat. O wise one! Understand (the true Way of life) through the Divine love. (sggs 1411).
  • ਗੁਰ ਮੰਤ੍ਰ ਹੀਣਸ੍ਯ੍ਯ ਜੋ ਪ੍ਰਾਣੀ ਧ੍ਰਿਗੰਤ ਜਨਮ ਭ੍ਰਸਟਣਹ ॥ ਕੂਕਰਹ ਸੂਕਰਹ ਗਰਧਭਹ ਕਾਕਹ ਸਰਪਨਹ ਤੁਲਿ ਖਲਹ ॥੩੩॥: That mortal who lacks the Gur-mantra (Guru’s counsel, advice, Wisdom, Upadesh, ਸਲਾਹ), cursed and fallen (depraved, polluted…) is his life. That wicked person is a dog, a pig, a jackass, a crow, a snake (in this very life, here and now, not after death). ||33|| (1356).

The Gurbani compares an association with the Manmukhs and their activities with that of a crow, etc.

  • ਬਗੁਲਾ ਕਾਗ ਨੀਚ ਕੀ ਸੰਗਤਿ ਜਾਇ ਕਰੰਗ ਬਿਖੂ ਮੁਖਿ ਲਾਈਐ ॥: The stork and the crow like the lowly association. (Even if some come for their own selfish purposes to the Guru) but after leaving they feed on a carcass of poison (Maya) (sggs 881).

The Mayaic mind is vast in its combinations of time, space and form.The Gurbani indicates that before one’s Mayaic, mundane, or crow-mind is transformed into the Pure Mind, it is of the animal-nature. A mind devoid of the Naam (Wisdom, Truth, Virtues…) is compared in the Gurbani with that of a crow, and many other animals…:

  • ਢੀਲੁ ਰਬਾਬੀ ਬਲਦੁ ਪਖਾਵਜ ਕਊਆ ਤਾਲ ਬਜਾਵੈ ॥ ਪਹਿਰਿ ਚੋਲਨਾ ਗਦਹਾ ਨਾਚੈ ਭੈਸਾ ਭਗਤਿ ਕਰਾਵੈ ॥੧॥: ਫੀਲੁ ਰਬਾਬੀ ਬਲਦੁ ਪਖਾਵਜ ਕਊਆ ਤਾਲ ਬਜਾਵੈ ॥ ਪਹਿਰਿ ਚੋਲਨਾ ਗਦਹਾ ਨਾਚੈ ਭੈਸਾ ਭਗਤਿ ਕਰਾਵੈ ॥੧॥: (The mind’s animal nature) plays the guitar of the elephant-nature (egoism…); it plays drums of the ox-nature (indolence, ignorance…); it plays cymbals of the crow-nature (material cleverness…). (The mind’s animal nature) performs dance of the donkey-nature (lust…), and perform Bhagti of the buffalo-nature (uncontrolled conduct or intoxication with Maya…) ||1||. (sggs 477).
  • ਗੁਰ ਮੰਤ੍ਰ ਹੀਣਸ੍ਯ੍ਯ ਜੋ ਪ੍ਰਾਣੀ ਧ੍ਰਿਗੰਤ ਜਨਮ ਭ੍ਰਸਟਣਹ ॥ ਕੂਕਰਹ ਸੂਕਰਹ ਗਰਧਭਹ ਕਾਕਹ ਸਰਪਨਹ ਤੁਲਿ ਖਲਹ ॥੩੩॥: That mortal who lacks the Gur-mantra (Guru’s counsel, advice, Wisdom, Upadesh, ਸਲਾਹ), cursed and fallen (depraved, polluted…) is his life. That wicked person is a dog, a pig, a jackass, a crow, a snake (in this very life, here and now, not after death). ||33|| (1356).

In nutshell, friendship of the Manmukhs (Saakats, etc.) is akin to a crow.

Deep within, a Manmukh has no interest in Awakening the Knowledge (Giaan, Wisdom). In foolishness, although, he takes great pride in describing or talking about Rabb. But, his true nature is to speak only falsehood.

Bhagti or Understanding the Gurbani through the Shabad-Vichaar  or churning the Gurbani is same as offering camphor to a crow, married life to an eunuch, sandalwood oil to a dog, reading of scriptures to a deaf, placing of a light before a blind man, place of gold before a herd of cattle, placing of precious ornaments on a monkey‘s body, offering of milk to a snake, etc.

  • ਝੂਠੇ ਕਉ ਨਾਹੀ ਪਤਿ ਨਾਉ ॥ ਕਬਹੁ ਨ ਸੂਚਾ ਕਾਲਾ ਕਾਉ ॥: The false (ਮਾਇਆ/ਕੂੜ ਦਾ ਵਪਾਰੀ ਜੀਵ) one has no respect or honor; like the black crow (who’s mind has become black with Bikaars, Mayaic efforts…), never becomes Pure. (sggs 839).
  • ਫਿਰਿ ਫਿਰਿ ਫਾਹੀ ਫਾਸੈ ਕਊਆ ॥ ਫਿਰਿ ਪਛੁਤਾਨਾ ਅਬ ਕਿਆ ਹੂਆ ॥: Again and again, the crow (of the Mayaic mind or Jeeva…) falls into the net (ਫੰਧਾ, ਬੰਧਨ, ਫਾਸੀ, ਫਾਹਾ, noose…). Then (after having been so trapped) he grieves, but what can he do then? (sggs 935).

There is this totally nonsensical story about black crows that enter a pool of water and come out at as white — miracle! Chamatkaar!

Many us (if not ALL) have heard this story from the Sikh Pujaaree groups, who, apparently, seem to be still living in the stone-age!

These idiotic and foolish Pujaaree manufactured such stories despite the fact that the Gurbani assertively rejects such nonsense — a crow black cannot become white like that!

  • ਕਾਗਉ ਹੋਇ ਨ ਊਜਲਾ ਲੋਹੇ ਨਾਵ ਨ ਪਾਰੁ ॥ ਪਿਰਮ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਮੰਨਿ ਲੈ ਧੰਨੁ ਸਵਾਰਣਹਾਰੁ ॥ ਹੁਕਮੁ ਪਛਾਣੈ ਊਜਲਾ ਸਿਰਿ ਕਾਸਟ ਲੋਹਾ ਪਾਰਿ ॥: The crow does not become white, and an iron boat does not float across. One who lives by the Divine Wisdom (Naam Padaarath, Giaan Padaarath) is blessed; he exalts and embellishes others as well. One who realizes the Hukam (Law of Nature, Universal Energy…) becomes Pure; he floats across, like iron upon wood. (sggs 1089).
  • ਝੂਠੇ ਕਉ ਨਾਹੀ ਪਤਿ ਨਾਉ ॥ ਕਬਹੁ ਨ ਸੂਚਾ ਕਾਲਾ ਕਾਉ ॥ : The false one (Manmukh, Saakat, Mayadhaaree…) has no honor or respect; like the black crow (i.e., filthy mind imbued in Bikaar), it never becomes pure. (sggs 839).

In this context, here some more pertinent verses from the Gurbani on the crow-mentality.

  • ਦੁਰਮਤਿ ਭਾਗਹੀਨ ਮਤਿ ਫੀਕੇ ਨਾਮੁ ਸੁਨਤ ਆਵੈ ਮਨਿ ਰੋਹੈ ॥ ਕਊਆ ਕਾਗ ਕਉ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਰਸੁ ਪਾਈਐ ਤ੍ਰਿਪਤੈ ਵਿਸਟਾ ਖਾਇ ਮੁਖਿ ਗੋਹੈ ॥੩॥ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਸਰੁ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਸਤਿਵਾਦੀ ਜਿਤੁ ਨਾਤੈ ਕਊਆ ਹੰਸੁ ਹੋਹੈ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਧਨੁ ਧੰਨੁ ਵਡੇ ਵਡਭਾਗੀ ਜਿਨ੍ਹ੍ਹ ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਰਿਦੈ ਮਲੁ ਧੋਹੈ ॥੪॥੨॥: Evil-minded are unfortunate, they remain shallow-minded, and they feel anger in their minds, when they hear the Naam, (Wisdom, Virtues, Truth…). You may place Amrit before a crow and a raven, but they will be satisfied only by eating Excrement (ਗੰਦਗੀ). ||3||  The Satiuru, the Speaker of Truth (i.e., Giaan or Knowledge), is the “Amrit Saru” (the pool of Giaan-Amrit); bathing within it, the crow-like  (MIND) becomes a swan-like (i.e., pure, enlightened, virtuous, etc.). O Nanak! Those people are blessed very fortunate who wash away their Hearts filth with the Naam (Wisdom, Truth, Virtues…) obtained through the Gurmat. ||4||2|| (sggs 493).
  • ਕਿਆ ਹੰਸੁ ਕਿਆ ਬਗੁਲਾ ਜਾ ਕਉ ਨਦਰਿ ਕਰੇਇ ॥ ਜੋ ਤਿਸੁ ਭਾਵੈ ਨਾਨਕਾ ਕਾਗਹੁ ਹੰਸੁ ਕਰੇਇ ॥੨॥ : What is the swan (-mentality), and what is the crane(-mentality)? It is by the Grace (of the Gur-Wisdom, one’s mind becomes Hans-like: Pure, Gurmukh). O Nanak! Whoever has Awakened the Wisdom within is transformed from a crow (filthy or Bikaaree mind – Manmukh) into a swan (pure mind – Gurmukh). ||2|| (sggs 91).

3 replies on “Crow-Mind”

Good read.

Sir why is that a person who is full of lobh, moh, dridra also a person of God. Karmically he must be having things to pay off by still living by pure force of animal nature . So it rightful to hate or look down upon such a person ? Havent we been taught to be nice to everyone- even the so called “pappi or horrible people”.
Please would like to know your perspective.

So it rightful to hate or look down upon such a person ?…

Based on my understanding of the Gurbani, the Gurbani does not want anybody to hate anybody.

• ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਵੈਰ ਵਿਰੋਧ ਗਵਾਵੈ ॥ (sggs 942).

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