ਦੁਰਜਨੁ ਦੂਜਾ ਭਾਉ ਹੈ ਵੇਛੋੜਾ ਹਉਮੈ ਰੋਗੁ ॥:
Durjanu doojaa bhaaou hai veshorraa haumai rogu
Duality is the evil person; and the disease of egotism
is the separation (from God) (sggs 1094).

The nature of one'sMool within (Source, Origin, Jot...), is Blissful Conscious Existence. Since the Soul is an expanse of the Divine Substance (Joti-Svaroopa); and since the Divine Being is Pure, impartial and unbiased, the Original Soul-Nature of all Jeeva (individual beings) is equal and alike. In other words, the Creator intentionally does not make a good or a bad Soul. Seen thusly, the Soul and the world are not inherently evil or corrupt.

  • ਏਕ ਨੂਰ ਤੇ ਸਭੁ ਜਗੁ ਉਪਜਿਆ ਕਉਨ ਭਲੇ ਕੋ ਮੰਦੇ ॥੧॥: Ek noor te sabh jagu upjiaa kaoun bhale ko mande ||1||: From this One Light, the entire universe has welled up. So who is good, and who is bad? ||1|| (sggs 1349).

Nothing can come out of nothingness. For example, a wave arises out water, evolves in water, and ultimately merges back into the water. The water ever remains the same water. For the wave to arise, the water has to be there; for it cannot exist if there is no water. Similarly, the Soul arises from the Perfect and Complete Lord, evolves in it, and merges back into it. But the Perfect Lord remains the same. To assume that the Soul and the world are created less than Perfect or Complete would imply that the Absolute One is not Perfect (or All-knowing and All-powerful); thus making Him incomplete.

The Perfect Lord cannot create an imperfect entity. However, we do see the world full of evil, false, ugly, misery, sorrows, corruption, injustice, death, disease, and so on. How can this be reconciled?

The Gurbani defines the root of evil as forgetfulness or ignorance of one's True Nature (Joti-Svaroopa, etc.). As such, the evil is defined as one's engrossment in the love of the second, Doojaa Bhaav or duality (Maya).

  • ਹਰਿ ਛੋਡਨਿ ਸੇ ਦੁਰਜਨਾ ਪੜਹਿ ਦੋਜਕ ਕੈ ਸੂਲਿ ॥੨॥: Har shodan se durjanaa parahi dojak kai sool ||2||: Evil people are those who forsake God; they fall into the horrible pit of hell (i.e., they suffer the horrible pain of their hellish existence) ||2|| (sggs 322).
  • ਦੁਰਜਨੁ ਦੂਜਾ ਭਾਉ ਹੈ ਵੇਛੋੜਾ ਹਉਮੈ ਰੋਗੁ ॥: Durjanu doojaa bhaaou hai veshorraa haumai rogu: Duality is the evil person; and the disease of egotism is the separation (from God) (sggs 1094).

Thus, in nutshell, harming others, harming ourselves, causing sorrow to people or coming in the way of the good is evil. It is one's any wicked behavior. To put it otherwise, any bad forces that cause bad things to happen are evil.

To view that all evil in the world is the handiwork of some outside agency (Satan or demon) shows the subtle influences of ignorant dogma. Such bewildering explanation denies the Gurbani's view.

  • ਕਰਮੀ ਆਪੋ ਆਪਣੀ ਕੇ ਨੇੜੈ ਕੇ ਦੂਰਿ ॥: Karmee aapo aapnee ke nerrai ke doori: According to their own actions, some are near (Akaal Purukh or God), and some are far away (sggs 8).
It is said that the evil is in one's mind Now, what is mind? Mind is nothing but a bundle of thoughts or Phurne. It exists so long thoughts exist. Thoughts arising from wicked tendencies constitute evil mind. Similarly, pure thoughts (Aatam-Giaan) constitute good mind, and the state of thoughtlessness constitutes no-mind (killed-mind or egolessness). Good thoughts and evil thoughts are all relative. But the Absolute Truth is beyond any relativity. Since the thoughts are ever anew or afresh (i.e., fleeting), the mind is not a real entity. Anything that depends on something else for its existence is unreal. Thus, upon investigation (Shabad-Vichaar) into the mind, we find that it is a phantom. That's why the Gurbani (sggs) repeatedly reminds us to eliminate it.
  • ਨਾ ਮਨੁ ਮਰੈ ਨ ਕਾਰਜੁ ਹੋਇ ॥ ਮਨੁ ਵਸਿ ਦੂਤਾ ਦੁਰਮਤਿ ਦੋਇ ॥: Na man mare na kaaraj hoi. Man vas dootaa durmat doi: Till the mind does not die, the job (Self-realization, God-union - ਪਰਮਾਤਮਾ ਨਾਲ ਇੱਕ-ਰੂਪ ਹੋਣ ਦਾ) is not accomplished. The mind is in the control of evil passions, evil intent, and duality (sggs 222).
How do thoughts (or mind) come into being? It is the false ego that gives rise to aggregate of thoughts called mind. As we can see, the mind, thoughts and ego are mere words, but in reality they all are one and the same. Now, where does the false ego come from? If we go deeper into Shabad-Vichaar, we will find that Maya (ignorance, duality, etc.) is the root of false ego. It is this Maya, the illusive power, that is responsible for the manifestation of this phenomenal material world of names and forms - subject-object relationship or the principle of duality. Being spiritually ignorant, it gives rise to false ego, which identifies the Mool with the material body. In other words, under the spell of ignorance and doubts, Mool becomes superimposed by the outer consciousness of the material world (i.e., false ego). By its very nature, thus, the outer consciousness of externalities of  world creates bondage or evil mentality.
  • ਇਹੁ ਸਰੀਰੁ ਮਾਇਆ ਕਾ ਪੁਤਲਾ ਵਿਚਿ ਹਉਮੈ ਦੁਸਟੀ ਪਾਈ ॥: Ih sareer maya kaa putlaaa vich haumai dustaee paaee: This body is the puppet of Maya. The evil of egotism is within it (sggs 31).
Psychological ego essentially is another name for the false concepts such as good-and-evil. As no modification is possible in the Mool (Source, Joti-Svaroopa...), there exists no such concept. It arises in false ego-sense (Haume) only. In Pure Consciousness, there is no good or bad; there do not exist a higher state of consciousness or a lower state of consciousness; for the Spirit is just one Homogeneous Oneness. Thus the concept of good or evil comes into being only after the seed of ignorance sprouts into our false ego-sense (Haume), followed by its far reaching branches. As the Gurbani affirms, the false ego-sense (Haume) corrupts the man's entire body-mind-intellect apparatus!
  • ਮਨ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਹਉਮੈ ਰੋਗੁ ਹੈ ਭ੍ਰਮਿ ਭੂਲੇ ਮਨਮੁਖ ਦੁਰਜਨਾ ॥: Man antar haumai rog hai bharam bhoole manmukh durjanaa: Those within whose mind is the disease of ego (Haumai - ਹਉਮੈ), those self-willed (Manmukhs), the evil beings (ਬਿਕਾਰੀ ਬੰਦੇ - corrupt people), are deluded by doubt (sggs 301).
  • ਮੇਰੀ ਬਹੁਰੀਆ ਕੋ ਧਨੀਆ ਨਾਉ ॥ ਲੇ ਰਾਖਿਓ ਰਾਮ ਜਨੀਆ ਨਾਉ ॥੧॥ ਇਨ੍ਹ੍ਹ ਮੁੰਡੀਅਨ ਮੇਰਾ ਘਰੁ ਧੁੰਧਰਾਵਾ ॥ ਬਿਟਵਹਿ ਰਾਮ ਰਮਊਆ ਲਾਵਾ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ : (O Kabeer!) The name of my old bride (i.e, my old thinking) was "Dhaneeaa" (meaning who loved wealth, i.e., Bikaar - perplexed..). (Due to influence of Satsang) now she has become the knower of Raam (Truth, Wisdom, Virtues...). These Satsangi have ruined my house (within which my Bikaaree or perplexed mind used to live - now that old thinkig of my mind is changed). (Satsangi have caused my "Bitavahi" (my ignorant mind) to link with Raam (naam - Truth, Wisdom, Virtues...). ||1||Pause|| (sggs 484).
Now, perhaps one can appreciate as to why the Gurbani proclaims the false ego (Haume) to be the greatest disease one can be inflicted with! Again, the severity of this disease depends on the quality of one's past deeds or Vaasnaas — conditioning, latent memories and subtle impressions of the past. Whatever we do at the present becomes the memory of the past the very next moment!

Since the evil and one's Mayaic efforts cannot be separated, the root of all evils lies in man. When the Spiritual ignorance dims the intelligence, then desires and fear creep up and make their demand. Desires and fear, in turn, are unfailingly followed by 5 evil passions — lust, anger, greed, emotional attachment, and pride, with their numerous variations. The faults of our Haume, the 5 evils are also known as "Panch Chor", "Panch Janaa", "Panj Doot", "Panj Mahaabalee", "Panch Sikadaar", "Panj Dusat", "Panch Sakhee" or 5 companions, five evils, five thieves, evil passions, or simply the man's inner garbage.

But, how does a man without control over his senses causes himself into the pitch darkness of spiritual ignorance? Here is a step-by-step analysis of his descent. His brooding over objects of the senses causes attachment to them. From such attachment, lust or craving develops; from unfulfilled lust or craving, anger arises; from anger, mental delusion arises; from delusion comes bewilderment or loss of memory of the true Self; the loss of such memory causes loss of intelligence or the discriminating faculty; upon loss of intelligence or discrimination, one falls down into the material consciousness (or evil-mindedness); which, in turn, brings annihilation of his Spiritual Life.

  • ਭੀਤਰਿ ਪੰਚ ਗੁਪਤ ਮਨਿ ਵਾਸੇ ॥ ਥਿਰੁ ਨ ਰਹਹਿ ਜੈਸੇ ਭਵਹਿ ਉਦਾਸੇ ॥੧॥: Bheetar panch gupat mani vaase. Thir n rahahi jaise bhavahi oudaase ||1||: The "five" (i.e., all evil passions: lust, anger, greed, etc.) dwell hidden within the mind. They do not remain still, but move around like wanderers (ਠਠੰਬਰੇ ਹੋਇਆਂ ਵਾਂਗ, and do not let my mind remain still) ||1|| (sggs 359).
As evil is lesser good, it is a relative term dependent on the narrow egotistical viewpoint. However, in the Absolute Truth, there is no relativity as there is no ego or ignorance. Therefore, from the viewpoint of the Supreme Truth, there is no such thing as evil — all is. The perception of evil belongs only to false ego. Whatever we sow in egoism, we reap in the form of evil at later date.
  • ਹਉਮੈ ਸਭਾ ਗਣਤ ਹੈ ਗਣਤੈ ਨਉ ਸੁਖੁ ਨਾਹਿ ॥ ਬਿਖੁ ਕੀ ਕਾਰ ਕਮਾਵਣੀ ਬਿਖੁ ਹੀ ਮਾਹਿ ਸਮਾਹਿ ॥: Haumai sabhaa ganat hai gantai naou sukh naahi. Bikh kee kaar kamaavanee bikh hee maahi samaai: All accounting is in egotism, in these, there is no Peace. Acting in evil and corruption, people are immersed in corruption (sggs 36).

In the Gurbani, the evil is compares to the Manmukh. As defined in the Gurbani, a Manmukh is he who has not realized the Shabad-Surti (or Aatam-Giaan). Everyone in his life is either a servant of Maya or a servant of God. Simply put: those who serve Maya are called Manmukh. The Gurmukh is the Opposite of a Gurmukhs.

  • ਮਨਮੁਖ ਮੈਲੀ ਕਾਮਣੀ ਕੁਲਖਣੀ ਕੁਨਾਰਿ ॥ ਪਿਰੁ ਛੋਡਿਆ ਘਰਿ ਆਪਣਾ ਪਰ ਪੁਰਖੈ ਨਾਲਿ ਪਿਆਰੁ ॥ ਤ੍ਰਿਸਨਾ ਕਦੇ ਨ ਚੁਕਈ ਜਲਦੀ ਕਰੇ ਪੂਕਾਰ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਬਿਨੁ ਨਾਵੈ ਕੁਰੂਪਿ ਕੁਸੋਹਣੀ ਪਰਹਰਿ ਛੋਡੀ ਭਤਾਰਿ ॥੧॥: Manmukh mailee kaamnee kulakhanee kunaar. Pir shodiaa ghar aapnaa par purkhe naal piaar. Trisanaa kade n chukaee jaladee kare pookaar. Nanak bin naavai kuroop kusohanee parahar shodee bhataar ||1||: The self-willed Manmukh, is like a filthy, ill-natured, and an evil wife. (Who has) forsaken her Husband Lord and leaving her own home (i.e., the True Self), she gives her love to another (i.e., Maya). Her desires are never satisfied, and she burns and cries out in pain. O Nanak, without the Name, (the Manmukh being) is (like an) ugly and ungraceful (i.e., egoist) woman, who is (also) abandoned by her Husband ||1|| (sggs 89).
Since the Gurbani is of the nature of God, one who does not follow its regulative principles and who acts according to his own whims is called evil, demon, Satan, or Asura. The reason such persons are called evil is that there Mayaic efforts are not beneficial for the people in general. In reality, they act only out of deeply deluded egocentric false convictions and self-serving ambitions for material enjoyment. All their religious activities are meant only to promote lust for power or some selfish social purpose. Absorbed in dissimulation, self-conceit, and insolence, they are always attracted by the impermanent, they are always sworn in unclean efforts to hurt others, they are always engaged in illegal means to secure money for sense gratification, and they always believe in the strength of their personal work (self-will) rather than the Eternal Hukam.
  • ਲਬੁ ਲੋਭੁ ਬੁਰਾ ਅਹੰਕਾਰੁ ॥ ਲਾੜੀ ਚਾੜੀ ਲਾਇਤਬਾਰੁ ॥ ਮਨਮੁਖੁ ਅੰਧਾ ਮੁਗਧੁ ਗਵਾਰੁ ॥: Lab lobh buraa ahankaar. Laaree chaaree laaitbaar. Manmukh andhaa mughad gavaar: Tastes of the tongue (ਜੀਭ ਦਾ ਚਸਕਾ), greed, and egotism are bad. Slander, commendation (false praise, etc.), and gossip (these are also all bad); the self-willed Manmukh (who practices all these) is blind, foolish and ignorant (i.e, he does not know what's right in life). (sggs 931).
How can demonic mentality be guided to the path of Spiritual Wisdom? Since the Shabad is the killer of Maya, it is the destroyer of ignorance, it is the slayer of ego, it is the defacer of duality, it is the fire (Divine Knowledge) that burns the seed of corrupt intellect and deluded mind.
  • ਰਹਤ ਰਹਤ ਰਹਿ ਜਾਹਿ ਬਿਕਾਰਾ ॥ ਗੁਰ ਪੂਰੇ ਕੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਅਪਾਰਾ ॥ Rahat rahat rahi jaahi bikaaraa. Gur poore kai sabad apaaraa: Evil ways (Bikaars) are slowly and steadily blotted out, by (engaging in) the Incomparable Shabad of the Perfect Guru (sggs 259).

For this to happen, one must dive into the cave of the Heart. According to the Gurbani, this is the cave of the Intuitive Wisdom (Aatam-Giaan), Spiritual-silence or Sunn Samaadhi, profound or seedless Trance, Absolute Void, Blissful Realm, Intuitive Poise, Tenth Gate, Chauthaa Pad or fourth state, Turiyaa Avasthaa, Self-realization, Sahaj Ghar or Sahaj Avasthaa, Begam Puraa, etc. This is the cave where the Divine Light plays the unstruck melody of undivided Joy.

  • ਇਸੁ ਗੁਫਾ ਮਹਿ ਅਖੁਟ ਭੰਡਾਰਾ ॥ ਤਿਸੁ ਵਿਚਿ ਵਸੈ ਹਰਿ ਅਲਖ ਅਪਾਰਾ ॥ ਆਪੇ ਗੁਪਤੁ ਪਰਗਟੁ ਹੈ ਆਪੇ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦੀ ਆਪੁ ਵੰਞਾਵਣਿਆ ॥੧॥: Is gufaa mahi akhut bhandaaraa. Tis vich vasai hari alakh apaaraa. Aapae gupat paragat hai aapae gur sabadee aap vannajaavaniaa ||1||: Within the cave of heart (inside the body), there is an Inexhaustible Treasure. Within this cave, the Invisible and Infinite Lord abides. He Himself is hidden, and He Himself is revealed; He is realized through the Gur-Shabad. ||1|| (sggs 124).
  • ਅਨਹਦੁ ਵਾਜੈ ਸਹਜਿ ਸੁਹੇਲਾ ॥ ਸਬਦਿ ਅਨੰਦ ਕਰੇ ਸਦ ਕੇਲਾ ॥ ਸਹਜ ਗੁਫਾ ਮਹਿ ਤਾੜੀ ਲਾਈ ਆਸਣੁ ਊਚ ਸਵਾਰਿਆ ਜੀਉ ॥੧॥: Anahad vaajai sahaj suhelaa. sabad anand kare sadh kelaa. sahaj gufaa mahi taarree laaee aasan ooch savaariaa jeeou ||1||: The Unstruck Melody resounds and resonates in Sahaj (Natural State of Being, ਆਤਮਕ ਅਡੋਲਤਾ, etc.). I rejoice in the Eternal Bliss by engaging in the (Gur-) Shabad. (Because of this) I sit in Samadhi in the cave of Sahaj (ਆਤਮਕ ਅਡੋਲਤਾ-ਰੂਪ ਗੁਫਾ), absorbed or established (in the feet of) the Highest (Greatest, etc.) Lord. ||1|| (sggs 97).
What does it mean by entering the cave of the Heart? It simply means detaching the mind from the externalities of the world and then turning it inward, through the Shabad-Vichaar. To put it otherwise, entering the Heart or turning the mind inward simply means remaining without worldly distractions. Just as a bird flies in the sky without leaving any mark, or just as a fish swims in the water without making any footprints, or just as the lotus lives in the water without being touched by the slime, or just as the swan swims across the stream without becoming wet, similarly, the Gurbani asserts that one can and must live amidst the so called impurities of the material world without being affected or distracted.
  • ਗੁਣਵੰਤੀ ਸਚੁ ਪਾਇਆ ਤ੍ਰਿਸਨਾ ਤਜਿ ਵਿਕਾਰ ॥: Gunvantee sach paaiaa trishnaa taj vikaar: The virtuous obtain Truth; they give up their desires for evil and corruption (sggs 36).
  • ਕਾਮਣਿ ਕਾਮਿ ਨ ਆਵਈ ਖੋਟੀ ਅਵਗਣਿਆਰਿ ॥ ਨਾ ਸੁਖੁ ਪੇਈਐ ਸਾਹੁਰੈ ਝੂਠਿ ਜਲੀ ਵੇਕਾਰਿ ॥: Kaaman kaam na aavaee khotee avganiaar. Na sukh peyeeai saahurai jhooth jalee vekaar: The soul-bride is of no use at all, if she is evil and without virtue. She does not find peace in this world or the next; she burns in falsehood and corruption (sggs 56).
The evil-mindedness is Maya's trickery. If we intend to transcend Maya, then the Gurbani's advice is to engage in Shabad-Vichaar. Without freedom from the scourge of bodily wants, false ideas, and useless accretions, spiritual progress — thinning of the evil-mindedness or purging of the arrogant sense of doership and enjoyership (egoity) — is not possible. By lovingly focusing the consciousness on the real Mool within, the influence and afflictions of Maya, ignorance, duality, ego, thoughts, or senses cease to exist. Then all that is non-self disappears, leaving theMool behind.
  • ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਆਪੁ ਪਛਾਣੀਐ ਬੁਰਾ ਨ ਦੀਸੈ ਕੋਇ ॥ : Gurmukh aap pashhaaneeai buraa na desai koi: Gurmukh is he who realizes his own (Real) Self; no one appears evil to him. (sggs 1244).
  • ਕਾਨੜਾ ਮਹਲਾ ੫ ॥ ਕਹਨ ਕਹਾਵਨ ਕਉ ਕਈ ਕੇਤੈ ॥ ਐਸੋ ਜਨੁ ਬਿਰਲੋ ਹੈ ਸੇਵਕੁ ਜੋ ਤਤ ਜੋਗ ਕਉ ਬੇਤੈ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ ਦੁਖੁ ਨਾਹੀ ਸਭੁ ਸੁਖੁ ਹੀ ਹੈ ਰੇ ਏਕੈ ਏਕੀ ਨੇਤੈ ॥ ਬੁਰਾ ਨਹੀ ਸਭੁ ਭਲਾ ਹੀ ਹੈ ਰੇ ਹਾਰ ਨਹੀ ਸਭ ਜੇਤੈ ॥੧॥ ਸੋਗੁ ਨਾਹੀ ਸਦਾ ਹਰਖੀ ਹੈ ਰੇ ਛੋਡਿ ਨਾਹੀ ਕਿਛੁ ਲੇਤੈ ॥ ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਜਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਹਰਿ ਹਰਿ ਹੈ ਕਤ ਆਵੈ ਕਤ ਰਮਤੈ ॥੨॥੩॥੨੨॥: Kaanraa, Mahalaa 5 || Kahan kahaaban kaou kaee ketai...: Kaanraa, Mahalaa 5. Many speak and talk (about God, Truth, Source, etc.). But one who understands the (real) Essence of Union (Yog, ਪਰਮਾਤਮਾ-ਮਿਲਾਪ; Realization of Truth...) - such a humble servant (ਸੇਵਕ) is very rare||1||Pause|| (The one who enjoys such Union with the Universal Essence, Truth, etc.) experiences no pain (ਉਸ ਨੂੰ ਕੋਈ ਦੁੱਖ ਨਹੀਂ ਪੋਹ ਸਕਦਾ) - (within) he is totally at Peace (he is Joyful, Happy, ਪ੍ਰਸੰਨ in His Hukam - for him Dukha and Sukha are one and the same). With his eyes, he sees (everywhere) only the One Lord. No one seems evil to him - all (seems) good (to him). There is no defeat (while fighting with his own mind's Bikaars or passions) - he is totally victorious. ||1|| (Such person established in Pure Consciousness) is never in sorrow - he is always happy (within); (he) does not gives this (ਆਤਮਕ ਆਨੰਦ, Bliss, etc.) up, and (he does not) take anything (in exchange for it). Says Nanak! who becomes such humble servant of the Lord does not come and go (birth and death - repeated suffering). ||2||3||22|| (sggs 1302).

— T. Singh