Since its inception in 1993, the author (T. Singh) decided to keep this website non-commercial — NOT to sell / commercialize the spiritual Wisdom of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS) and use it as a mundane business (‘ਰੋਟੀਆ ਕਾਰਣਿ’, ਧੰਧਾ, ਦੁਕਾਨਦਾਰੀ) as many are doing just that in the name of the Gurbani, Gurmat, Gurus and Sikhi.
Not a commercial website
In a nutshell:
- This website is NOT for those who use the SGGS or Sikhi as a mundane business, or who like their understanding of the SGGS watered down or distorted.
- This website is for those who have become Aware that there is more to the Gurbani or Way of the SGGS than the routine, ritualistic, and robotic reading or hearing of the Gurbani from the self-serving clergy (paid Pujaaree).
- This website is NOT meant to make presentation of corrupt politics, useless rituals (Karamakaand), dogmas, robes, religious paraphernalia etc. that have been logically rejected by the Gurbani (SGGS).
- This website is NOT to make Sikhs (learners or ਸਿਖਿਆਰਥੀ) fool. In this context, as we all routinely witness, the Gurdwaras (doorway of the Guru‘s Giaan-Wisdom) in control of the self-serving Pujaaree along with their management committees sweat for money and leadership ONLY (ਪੈਸਾ ਅਤੇ ਚੌਧਰ)! As a result, instead of being the ‘Dharamsaals‘ of Baabaa Nanak for the REALIZATION of his UNIQUE spirituality, Gurdwaras have become dens of mammon worshippers, and arenas of dirty politics and corruption. Thus, the self-serving Pujaaree in Gurdwaras, their management committees, and politician are serving each other and make Sikhs fool.
‘Gurbani is understood from the Gurbani’
Refraining from relying on non-Gurbani sources, this Website makes an attempt to explore the meanings of the Guru’s Shabad from the Gurbani (SGGS) – using Gurbani to explain Gurbani.
Currently available Teekaas of the SGGS on the Internet are primarily based on (1) literal translation, (2) incident (time, location, person etc.) based interpretations, (3) framework of Shastras, Vedas, Purans, other Hindu texts, Yogic system etc.
As a result, these distorted interpretations are becoming the sources of our confusion and misunderstanding of the Gurbani (SGGS). The outcome is that the Sikhi of Baabaa Nanak has been taken back to the concocted pre-1469 concepts which have been critiqued and debunked by Baabaa Nanak.
- ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਬਾਣੀ ਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਜਾਤੀ ਜਿ ਸਬਦਿ ਰਤੇ ਰੰਗੁ ਲਾਇ ॥ ਪਵਿਤੁ ਪਾਵਨ ਸੇ ਜਨ ਨਿਰਮਲ ਹਰਿ ਕੈ ਨਾਮਿ ਸਮਾਇ ॥੮॥: The Gurbani is understood from the Gurbani itself by those who with love remain imbued with the Gur-Shabad (Vichaar, Upadesh, Naam, Giaan or Wisdom…). Such people are of clean conduct and pure consciousness for they live by Naam (Wisdom, Virtues, Hukam...). ||8|| (sggs 1346).
- ਮੈ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਸੇਤੀ ਪਿਰਹੜੀ ਕਿਉ ਗੁਰ ਬਿਨੁ ਜੀਵਾ ਮਾਉ ॥ ਮੈ ਗੁਰਬਾਣੀ ਆਧਾਰੁ ਹੈ ਗੁਰਬਾਣੀ ਲਾਗਿ ਰਹਾਉ ॥੮॥: I have deep love for the ‘Satigur‘ (True Wisdom-ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ), O my mother how can I live without Gur (Giaan-Wisdom). The Gurbani (i.e. the Gurbani’s Wisdom) is my life-support. I can live only by joining in the Gurbani (i.e. to live with the Gur-Wisdom as a life-support is to live in Association with the One Rabb, Hukam, god, Universal Energy…). ||8|| (sggs 759).
- ਬਾਣੀ ਗੁਰੂ ਗੁਰੂ ਹੈ ਬਾਣੀ ਵਿਚਿ ਬਾਣੀ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤੁ ਸਾਰੇ ॥: (Guru’s) Bani is the Guru (of Sikhs i.e. Shabad-Guru or Wisdom or Giaan-Guru) and the Guru is present (as Giaan or Wisdom) in the Bani. The Amrit (of the Guru’s Giaan or Wisdom…) is contained in the whole of Bani. (sggs 982).
Therefore, while Interpreting the Gurbani (SGGS), it will be useful to keep in mind:
- Use the Gurbani as PRIMARY SOURCE (NOT secondary source) to understand the Gurbani (i.e. 1430 pages of the SGGS).
- Use the Gurbani to explain the Gurbani.
- Interpretation should have internal validity and reliability.
- Gurbani grammar is useful for coherent interpretation.
- The Gurbani is the sole indicator of original intent of the Gurus.
- The Guru’s intent lies in the Gurbani.
- Answers lie within the Gurbani.
- The Message of the Gurbani (SGGS) is Universal, Unique, Revolutionary, timeless, wholesome etc. What it means is that the Gurbani is never specific to location, occasion, person, incident etc.
- The obsessions with the nonsense such as AFTERLIFE, rituals or Karamkaand etc. in pre-1469 belief systems are removed from Gurbani (SGGS).
Our small effort (ਛੋਟਾ ਜਿਹਾ ਉਪਰਾਲਾ) at this website is to gain deeper understanding, clarity and Joy by understanding the Gurbani (SGGS) directly from the Gurbani, NOT from the self-serving Pujaaree system, Vedas, Puranas, Sanatan-Brahmanical-Yogic slants, fake Sakhis (stories) or any other Granths/texts written by the anti-Nanak or Anti-Sikhi groups etc.
To put it otherwise, the attempt here is self-improvement by removing to some extent the Gurbani or Gurmat‘s distortion and contamination, Karamkaand (rituals, superstitions, formalities etc.), doubts, confusions, blind faith (ਅੰਧ ਵਿਸਵਾਸ਼), falsehood, corruption, etc. which have been propagated and hammered into the Sikh Psyche by the self-serving Pujaaree (clergy: Granthis, Parcharaks, Ragis, Dhadees etc.) and the freeloading Deraa-Vaad Baabaas (ਵੇਹਲੜ).
Distortion of the Gurbani/Gurmat/Sikhi: A brief history
Upon the fall of the Sikh Raj of Baba Banda Singh Bahadur in 1718, Baba Banda Singh, and his entire army of Sikhs was captured and executed.
Authentic Sikhs – because there was a price on their heads and limbs – would take refuge in the jungles and hills of Punjab and nearby states.
This created a void and vacuum in Sikh Gurdwaras, Sikhi Parchaar, Sikh institutions, and virtually everything connected to the Sikh psyche.
This void and vacuum was filled by the anti-Skhi groups such as Udasi, Nirmala, Deeraa-Vaad Sants or Baabaas etc.
They controlled the Sikh Gurdwaras, Sikhi Parchaar, Sikh institutions and virtually everything connected to the Sikh psyche for a long and continuous period of time. Thus, slowly and surely, they were able to severely erode the Uniqueness of the Sikhi and made it look like the pre-1469 religions (ਮਜ਼ਹਬ) and their belief systems.
The bounty hunters and the rulers of the day left these groups alone, because they knew they were not Sikhs, and that their heads would fetch no price.
The Mughals and the British ruled Punjab and both rulers considered the Sikhi of Baabaa Nanak to be enemy of the state and remained hostile towards the Gurus as well as the authentic Sikhs, but actively supported these anti-Sikhi groups in the name of divide and rule.
For example, Udasi controlled for about 60 years. If we recall the true Sikh history, this Udasi group was the follower of the DISOWNED son of Baabaa Nanak, Sri Chand.
The Nirmala replaced Udasi and controlled for next about 150 years.
In short, these NIRMALA have BRAHMANICAL roots for they were educated and trained in BANARAS in Brahmanical ways.
In fact, these anti-Sikhi and anti-Nanak groups even purposefully moved Baabaa Nanak’s birth date from the month of Vaisakh (1st Vaisakh 1,469) to the month of Kattak! Month of Vaisakh corresponds to the month of April (i.e. Vaisakhi), and Kattack corresponds to October or November. Why and when was Baabaa Nanak’s birth day moved from Vaisakh to Kattak (Pooranmasshi)? In short, the Brahmin clergy considers the month of Vaisakh the holiest month of the year, so, they would not allow or tolerate Baabaa Nanak’s birth day to fall in Vaisakh! On the other hand, in Brahmanical sense, the month of Kattack is reserved for ‘low caste’. No wonder the FAKE Bala Janam Sakhi contains blasphemous stuff such as Guru Nanak’s past life as a ‘low caste Tayli‘ (ਤੇਲੀ)!!!!
Nirmala distorted and corrupted Baabaa Nanak’s Unique spirituality and Universal Message of the Gurbani (SGGS) through manufactured books (over three dozens), distorted Sikh history, unbelievable tales of miracles called Sakhis-ਸਾਖੀ written by them, using vedic and puranic slants in interpretations and translations of the Gurbani etc.
These Nirmala were kicked out from Gurdwaras around 1925 as a result of the Sikh Reform Movement (i.e. Singh Sabha Movement). After they were kicked out, they regrouped and came back even stronger in the form of Deraa-Vaad Baabaas or Sants, including the so called Taksal Deraa.
Deraas and the Deraa-Vaad Baabaas and sants in Punjab were initially created and supported by the British in the early 1900 in order to divide and rule Sikhs. If you recall the history, General Dyer, who is infamous for giving order for Jallianwala Bagh massacre, was given Siropa by the priests of the Golden Temple!!!!!!!!!!!
Now probably they control over 90 percent of the Gurdwaras worldwide, including all the Takhats. The self-serving Pujaaree (paid clergy) in these Gurdwaras is trained by Udasi, Nirmala and Deraa-Vaad.
Due to greed, craftiness, anti-Gurmat training etc. although we hear the self-serving Pujaaree quote Shabads from the Gurbani, but instead of definitions given in the Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS), they use definition from other sources — from outside of the SGGS like vedic and puranic slants etc. This self-serving clergy sells and uses the Gurbani (SGGS) as a commercial product (business-ਧੰਦਾ). They are in control of Sikh Gurdwaras, Sikhi Parchaar, institutions and virtually everything connected to the Sikh psyche since.
Consequently, the Sikhi we see today is not the UNIQUE and REVOLUTIONARY Sikhi that was given to us by Baabaa Nanak.
- ਬਾਣੀ ਤ ਕਚੀ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਬਾਝਹੁ ਹੋਰ ਕਚੀ ਬਾਣੀ ॥ ਕਹਦੇ ਕਚੇ ਸੁਣਦੇ ਕਚੇ ਕਚੀ ਆਖਿ ਵਖਾਣੀ ॥: That Bani which is devoid of Divine Wisdom (Satguru: True Wisdom-ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ) is ‘Kachee‘ (half baked; filth; useless; lies). The ones who utter (‘Kachee Bani) are useless, the ones who hear such ‘Kachee Bani are useless; liars telling lies to others. (sggs 920).
- ਇਕਾ ਬਾਣੀ ਇਕੁ ਗੁਰੁ ਇਕੋ ਸਬਦੁ ਵੀਚਾਰਿ ॥: One Bani alone is authentic Guru; (so just consider or) reflect on One Shabad. (sggs 646).
Since it’s easy to enslave, manipulate and exploit the greedy, fearful and confused mind, the self-serving Pujaaree-Vaad wants people to remain confused and ignorant of the true meanings of the Gurbani! This way nobody will be able to question them!
Shabad Vichaar – Guru’s Sevaa (Service)
Fittingly, SGGS gives the utmost importance to Shabad-Vichaar (Reflections On the Gurbani — churning the Gurbani for extracting the Butter of Wisdom…). In turn, this Giaan (spiritual Wisdom, or Knowledge) helps one become a good human. In turn, good humans build better society (ਵਧੀਆ ਇਨਸਾਨ ਤੇ ਵਧੀਆ ਸਮਾਜ)!
- ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਸੇਵਾ ਸਬਦੁ ਵੀਚਾਰੁ ॥: The Gur-Sevaa is Shabad-Vichaar (Reflection on the Shabad — Upadesh, Giaan, Wisdom, Naam…). (sggs 223).
- ਸਭਸੈ ਊਪਰਿ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦੁ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ ॥: Reflection on the Gur-Shabad is above all (other notions, speculations, calculations…). (sggs 904).
Pujaaree’s stale spirituality vs. Nanak’s UNIQUE spirituality
- Spirituality of the self-serving Pujaaree (paid clergy) is the spirituality of FEAR and GREED. However the Unique spirituality of the SGGS is of BLISS (Ananad, Joy).
- Spirituality of the self-serving Pujaaree is the spirituality of BEGGING (Mayaic Ardaas-prayers). However the Unique spirituality of the SGGS is of Godly Contentment.
- Spirituality of the self-serving Pujaaree is the spirituality of MIDDLE-MAN (ਵਿਚੋਲਾ). However the Unique spirituality of the SGGS is the spirituality of the SELF, for the SELF, by the SELF.
- Spirituality of the self-serving Pujaaree is the spirituality of LIFE AFTER DEATH. However the Unique spirituality of the SGGS is of HERE and NOW.
- Spirituality of the self-serving Pujaaree is the spirituality of KARAMKAAND (RITUALS, formalities etc.). However the Unique spirituality of the SGGS is of spiritual Giaan-Wisdom (i.e. Enlightenment).
- Spirituality of the self-serving Pujaaree is the spirituality of MIRACLES (karaamaat). However the Unique spirituality of the SGGS is of HUKAM.
Baabaa Nanak’s Unique and Revolutionary Gurmat / Sikhi
The concept of basic principles is not found in Gurbani. The self-serving Pujaaree has concocted own catchphrases for their own reasons and benefits. Such Pujaaree manufactured catchphrases include, but not limited to, ‘Naam Jupnaa, Kiret Karni’, ‘Vand Shaknaa’, ‘Daan’, ‘Isnaan’, ‘Deg, Teg, Fateh’ etc. Reducing the UNIQUE and REVOLUTIONARY Message of Baabaa Nanak to such catchphrases does injustice to it.
All the 35 composers of the Gurbani (SGGS) walked the path that they speak of, and expected the rest of us walk that path as well. To mention few of their Directions:
- Asserted ONE CREATOR of the Entire Creation.
- Asserted Invisible Hukam (System-Rule-Law-Order of Nature) pervades the cosmos and governs motions of planets in space.
- Asserted Sikhi of the SELF, for the SELF, and by the SELF.
- Asserted to Become Divine through the process of BECOMING THE GURBANI, and realize the divinity that is within all of us.
- Asserted not to commit act that you will later regret in life.
- Asserted a life of responsibility (ਜਿੰਮੇਦਾਰੀ).
- Asserted becoming living liberated.
- Asserted only that time is Blessed when one remembers God.
- Asserted NO one place is holier than the other because all places are created by God because the same God permeates everywhere.
- Asserted the equality of men and women. Instructed the women to discard veil. Allowed widow and widower remarriage.
- Asserted recognizing the equality of mankind – Sikhi of Universal Humanism (‘Sarbat Daa Bhalaa’ – wishing well being of all).
- Asserted Dharma of the Godly Virtues — Truth (ਸਤ), honesty (truthfulness-ਇਮਾਨਦਾਰੀ), contentment (ਸੰਤੋਖ), mercy (ਦਯਾ), patience (ਧੀਰਜ), Sahaj (ਸਹਜ-Natural State of Being), Wisdom (Giaan-ਗਿਆਨ), humility (ਮਨ ਨਿਮਾਣਾ, ਬੁਧਿ ਗਰੀਬੀ), sweet speech (ਮਿਠ ਬੋਲੜਾ), fearlessness, friendship (no animosity) etc.
- Asserted not eat/drink that is unhealthy for body and mind.
- Asserted to become Enlightened (Gurmukh State of the Mind); and rejected Manmukh (Un-Enlightened) lifestyle.
- Rejected Pujaaree System (clergy).
- Rejected Snatan-Bramnical-Yogic rituals, symbols, religious paraphernalia etc.
- Rejected idol worship.
- Rejected multiple gods and goddesses.
- Rejected the concepts of virgin birth.
- Rejected resurrection (death is final) and a set doomsday for God’s verdict, because God / Hukam instantly decides every moment
- Rejected specific times and facing specific direction for prayer.
- Rejected venerations of dead relatives.
- Rejected pilgrimmages for spiritual gain and to wash your sins away etc.
- Rejected fasting (starving the body).
- Discarded the madness of caste system.
- Rejected Middle-Man between God and man. God in Sikhi does not function through any prophet / messiah / priest etc.
- Rejected concepts like apostate or ‘Kafir‘ etc. of traditional religions.
- Rejected the pre-1469 prevalent concepts of Karma, AFTER LIFE
salvation (Mukti), Tapa, renunciation (Sannyasa), etc.
- Condemned the Hindu practice of Satee (live immolation of widow on her husband’s funeral pyre).
- Rejected AFTER DEATH heaven and hell, 84 lakh Joon (8,400,000 lifeforms), transmigration. In other words, Sikhi does believe that there is a cycle of birth and death going on perpetually at the level of Mind on this earth HERE and NOW, but it rejects the idea of transmigration of soul (self) into different bodies. Although the word ‘Aatamaa‘ appears in SGGS but it appears in the meaning of self and not soul or ‘Aatamaa‘, which is said to be migrating into different bodies.
In a nutshell, Baabaa Nanak rejected all the religions of his day,
including the one he was born into — he was born into a Hindu household but with that faith his Gurmat or Sikhi shares nothing.
That being said, the Gurbani (SGGS) is not Meant to Regurgitate what already existed before the Advent of Baabaa Nanak (pre-1469 belief systems)!
Baabaa Nanak created DHARAMSAAL — a place to receive Spiritual Giaan-Wisdom or Gurmat.
- ਮੈ ਬਧੀ ਸਚੁ ਧਰਮ ਸਾਲ ਹੈ ॥ ਗੁਰਸਿਖਾ ਲਹਦਾ ਭਾਲਿ ਕੈ ॥ : I have established a true Dharamsaal. I’ve discovered the right-minded GurSikhs in this place of learning. (sggs 73).
However most of the Gurdwaras today are no longer the same Dharamsaal created by Baabaa Nanak. Why?
As discussed before, we Sikhs (learners or ਸਿਖਿਆਰਥੀ) have for a very long time lost control of our institutions to deviant and anti-Sikhi groups mainly the Udasis, Nirmalas and ‘Sant Baabaas’ beginning from 1718. As a result, Gurdwaras today are no longer the same Dharamsaal created by Guru Nanak.