Gurbani says focus on the Message not the Messenger

The Gurbani urges us to focus on the Message not the Messenger: “Gur kahiaa saa Kaar Kamaavahu” (“ਗੁਰਿ ਕਹਿਆ ਸਾ ਕਾਰ ਕਮਾਵਹੁ”) – do what the Guru tells (i.e., focus on the Message of the Guru, ਗੁਰ-ਬਚਨ, Gurmat…). In the same breadth, the Gurbani tells us not to focus on the Messenger.

  • ਗੁਰਿ ਕਹਿਆ ਸਾ ਕਾਰ ਕਮਾਵਹੁ ॥ ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਕਰਣੀ ਕਾਹੇ ਧਾਵਹੁ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਸਾਚਿ ਸਮਾਵਹੁ ॥੨੭॥: Do those deeds which the Guru has ordained. Why are you chasing after the Guru’s actions? O Nanak! Merge in the True (Lord) through the Gurmat ||27|| (sggs 933).
  • ਗੁਰਿ ਕਹਿਆ ਸਾ ਕਾਰ ਕਮਾਵਹੁ ॥ ਸਬਦੁ ਚੀਨ੍ਹ੍ਹਿ ਸਹਜ ਘਰਿ ਆਵਹੁ ॥ ਸਾਚੈ ਨਾਇ ਵਡਾਈ ਪਾਵਹੁ ॥੨॥: Do the deed (work, action, Kaar…), which the Guru tells you to do. (What is that Kaar? That Kaar is) Understand the Shabad, come to the Home of Sahaj (the inner Natural State of Being, ਗਿਆਨ ਅਵਸਤਾ, ਆਤਮਕ ਅਡੋਲਤਾ…). Through the True Naam (ਸਚ ਦਾ ਗਿਆਨ…), obtain Greatness (ਸੋਭਾ, eminence…). ||2|| (sggs 832).

In other words, the Gurbani tells us that we need to focus more on the Message (Understanding of the Gurbani, and then living that Understanding…) and less on the Messenger (person delivering the Message). That is, the Gurbani urges us to focus on the Message (Gurmat, Aatam-Giaan, Wisdom…), live by the Teachings of the Gur-Shabad

  • ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਕਾਰ ਕਮਾਇ ਮਹਲੁ ਪਛਾਣੀਐ ॥: By doing the Guru’s Kaar (Will, Rajaa, Gurmat or His Teaching…), one realizes (All-pervading Lord) Presence within (sggs 420).
  • ਸਰੀਰੁ ਜਲਉ ਗੁਣ ਬਾਹਰਾ ਜੋ ਗੁਰ ਕਾਰ ਨ ਕਮਾਇ ॥: That body devoid of Virtues burns away that does not do the Guru’s Kaar (sggs 651).
  • ਮਤਿ ਵਿਚਿ ਰਤਨ ਜਵਾਹਰ ਮਾਣਿਕ ਜੇ ਇਕ ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਸਿਖ ਸੁਣੀ ॥: Within the mind are gems, jewels and rubies (i.e., Divine virtues…), if one listens to the Guru’s Teachings, even once (sggs 2).

To do “Gur kee Kaar” is essentially to live in accordance with the Gurmat (Teaching of the Gur-Shabad, Hukam, Shabad-Giaan, Aatam Giaan…), whereby we allow the Gur-Shabad to guide our day-to-day life. Simply put: our reading and understanding of the Gur-Shabad will be difficient without allowing the Gur-Shabad to guide our daily life.

  • ਕਰਣੀ ਬਾਝਹੁ ਘਟੇ ਘਟਿ ॥: Karanee baajhahu ghate ghati (sggs 25).

As a carpenter makes objects out of rough-hewn wood, similarly, the Guru shapes his disciple – Sikh – into a sterling Gurmukh who experiences Bliss (Anand) in living the Gurmat (Spiritual Knowledge, Aatamic-Giaan…).

  • ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਮਾਨਿਆ ਕਰਣੀ ਸਾਰੁ ॥ ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਮਾਨਿਆ ਮੋਖ ਦੁਆਰੁ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਮਾਨਿਆ ਪਰਵਾਰੈ ਸਾਧਾਰੁ ॥੮॥੧॥੩॥ : Following (obeying, living…) the Gurmat (Aatam Giaan, Guru’s Teaching…), one’s conduct (ਆਚਰਨ, practice…) becomes excellent. Following the Gurmat, one finds the Door of salvation (ਮੁਕਤੀ ਦਾ ਰਸਤਾ, Liberation from Maya…). O Nanak! Following the Gurmat, (one) becomes the base of family. ||8||1||3|| (sggs 832).

But the question is, why the majority of us (over 99.9 percent category) focus on the Messenger instead of the Message? The Gurbani answers as follows:

  • ਪਉੜੀ ॥ ਜਿਨ ਕੇ ਚਿਤ ਕਠੋਰ ਹਹਿ ਸੇ ਬਹਹਿ ਨ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਪਾਸਿ ॥ ਓਥੈ ਸਚੁ ਵਰਤਦਾ ਕੂੜਿਆਰਾ ਚਿਤ ਉਦਾਸਿ ॥ ਓਇ ਵਲੁ ਛਲੁ ਕਰਿ ਝਤਿ ਕਢਦੇ ਫਿਰਿ ਜਾਇ ਬਹਹਿ ਕੂੜਿਆਰਾ ਪਾਸਿ ॥ ਵਿਚਿ ਸਚੇ ਕੂੜੁ ਨ ਗਡਈ ਮਨਿ ਵੇਖਹੁ ਕੋ ਨਿਰਜਾਸਿ ॥ ਕੂੜਿਆਰ ਕੂੜਿਆਰੀ ਜਾਇ ਰਲੇ ਸਚਿਆਰ ਸਿਖ ਬੈਠੇ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਪਾਸਿ ॥ ੨੬॥: Pourree || Jin ke chit kathor hahi se bahahi na satgur paas… (sggs 314).

Therefore, it is highly stressed in the Gurbani to be constantly attuned to the Gur-Shabad, to be in harmony with the Gur-Shabad, to feel the Gur-Shabad’s vibration while living in this world…

  • ਗੁਰ ਕਾ ਕਹਿਆ ਅੰਕਿ ਸਮਾਵੈ ॥ ਨਿਰਮਲ ਸੂਚੇ ਸਾਚੋ ਭਾਵੈ ॥ : (One who) Takes the Words of the Guru into his very fiber (Heart); (he becomes) immaculate, holy, and pleasing to the True Lord. (sggs 933).
  • ਗੁਰ ਕਿਰਪਾ ਤੇ ਸੇ ਜਨ ਜਾਗੇ ਜਿਨਾ ਹਰਿ ਮਨਿ ਵਸਿਆ ਬੋਲਹਿ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਬਾਣੀ ॥: Gur kirapaa te se jan (sggs 920).

Filed Under: Gurbani, Practice, ਅਮਲ, ਕਰਣੀ
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2 Comments Leave a comment

  1. ravindersingh

    dear sir your udham and selfless service in propagating the word of the Guru through this site is the most outstanding and extraordinary.May the Guru bless you and and guide you in spreading his word.

  2. balwindersingh

    wahe guru ji wahe guru ji

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