Gurmukh and Manmukh

It is repeatedly indicated in the Gurbani that there are only two different mentality-groups  living together on earth: the Gurmukhs and the Manmukhs. The Gurbani asks us to become the Gurmukhs. Why?

Because, only by becoming the Gurmukh one can Realize, Know, or Understand the Divine Light ( “ਚਾਨਣੁ”, ਜੋਤਿ-ਰੂਪ, ਜੋਤਿ ਨਾਲ ਸਾਂਝ, Light, Spiritual Wisdom, Aatam-Giaan, Brahm-Giaan, the Truth, and so on).

And, without becoming the Gurmukh, one remains a Manmukh – which is opposite of the Gurmukh.

According to the Gurbani, a Manmukh is “Mugadhu Gubaaru” (ਮੁਗਧੁ ਗੁਬਾਰੁ).

Mugadhu” (ਮੁਗਧੁ) = unwise, stupid, ignorant (in darkness), silly, foolish, deluded…

Gubaaru” (ਗੁਬਾਰੁ) = perplexed, filthy (inner filth: Kaam, Krodh, Lobh, etc.: lust, anger, greed, etc.)…

  • ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਚਾਨਣੁ ਜਾਣੀਐ ਮਨਮੁਖਿ ਮੁਗਧੁ ਗੁਬਾਰੁ ॥: The Gurmukh Knows the Divine Light, while the foolish Manmukh gropes around in the darkness of ignorance (sggs 20).

Now, why the Gurmukh is in ਚਾਨਣੁ (Divine Light, Giaan, Wisdom…), and the Manmukh is in darkness (of ignorance)? The Gurbani answers that the Manmukh is asleep (ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਵਲੋਂ-unaware of the Divine Life…) in the love of Maya, while the Gurmukh being established in the Divine Light (Giaan…) remains Awake (in the Divine Life and remains Aware of Maya-ਮਾਇਆ ਵਲੋਂ ਸੁਚੇਤ).

  • ਮਨਮੁਖਿ ਸੂਤਾ ਮਾਇਆ ਮੋਹਿ ਪਿਆਰਿ ॥ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਜਾਗੇ ਗੁਣ ਗਿਆਨ ਬੀਚਾਰਿ ॥ ਸੇ ਜਨ ਜਾਗੇ ਜਿਨ ਨਾਮ ਪਿਆਰਿ ॥੧॥  The Manmukh is asleep, in love and attachment to Maya. (The one who has) become the Gurmukh by contemplating Spiritual Wisdom and the Divine Virtues remains Awake. Those beings who love the Naam (Shabad, Hukam…), remains Awake (Aware of Maya). ||1|| (sggs 160).
  • ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਆਪਣਾ ਮਨੁ ਮਾਰਿਆ ਸਬਦਿ ਕਸਵਟੀ ਲਾਇ ॥ ਮਨ ਹੀ ਨਾਲਿ ਝਗੜਾ ਮਨ ਹੀ ਨਾਲਿ ਸਥ ਮਨ ਹੀ ਮੰਝਿ ਸਮਾਇ ॥: Applying the Touchstone of the Shabad, by becoming the Gurmukh, the Gurmukh conqueres his mind (prevents it from falling in love with Maya, etc.). He fights with his mind (its evil inclinations: ਬਿਕਾਰ-ਬਿਰਤੀ), he settles with his mind (make his mind understand), and he becomes immersed (in the auspicious nature of: ਸੁਭ-ਬਿਰਤੀ) his mind (sggs 87).

Thus, the Gurmukh is the Enlightened one (living liberated or living dead, the follower of the Truth, Divine Life…).

The Manmukh is the opposite of the Gurmukh (mentaly blind, ignorant, bound, the follower of the untruth or falsehood…) (ਮਨਮੁਖਿ ਜਨਮੁ ਗਵਾਇਆ ਝੂਠੈ ਲਾਲਚਿ ਕੂਰਿ ॥: Manmukhi Janam gavaaiaa jhoothai laalach koorr, sggs 854).

Thus, according to the Gurbani, being a Gurmukh or Manmukh is not a question of heredity, family of birth, ancestry, race, region, social status, caste, creed, education, titles, religion, or any peculiar external appearance of a person; it is a question of whether one has Realized the Shabad (Mool, Joti-Svaroopa, Source, Truth, Reality, Aatam-Giaan, Shabad-Giaan…) or not.

  • ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਬੂਝਹੁ ਸਬਦਿ ਪਛਾਣਹੁ ॥:  By becoming the Gurmukh, Understand and Realize (the Reality, Truth, Mool…) through the Shabad. (sggs 1041).
  • ਸੇ ਮਨਮੁਖ ਜੋ ਸਬਦ ਨ ਪਛਾਨਹਿ ॥: They alone are Manmukhs who do not Realize the Shabad (sggs 1054).

Indeed, to become  a Gurmukh is like standing in a fire without getting burnt!

Gurmukh and Manmukh was last modified: January 9th, 2015 by T. Singh
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