Fearlessness

The Gurbani Teaches us the subtle art of Awakening fearlessness!

A doctor cannot effectively treat a disease unless, first, he has properly diagnosed it!

The Gurbani’s Divine Doctor perfectly diagnoses the subtle diseases of the human mind, and, then, prescribes the appropriate treatment! Which then leads to the state of “Sooraa” (ਸੂਰਾ)

For example, consider the subtle disease of fearfulness (ਡਰ, ਸਹਮ, ਭੈ, ਖੌਫ, etc.). Before we consider it’s treatment or cure, let’s first ask the Gurbani’s Divine Doctor to diagnose the root cause of our lack of fearlessness (“ਨਿਰਭੈ ਪਦੁ”).

According to the Divine Doctor in the Gurbani, the root cause of fear is doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ, ignorance).

In other words, a doubt-ridden mind will be fearful. This simply means that if the doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ) is eradicated, fear departs, paving the way for fearlessness:

  • ਹਮਰਾ ਭਰਮੁ ਗਇਆ ਭਉ ਭਾਗਾ ॥: With the departure of my doubt, (my) fear has fled away (sggs 655).

Now, what is doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ)? In nutshell, doubt is no other then ignorance (Agiaantaa-ਅਗਿਆਨਤਾ) — the mind’s ignorance of its True Blissful Nature (Mool, Truth, Jot Saroop…).

  • ਅੰਤਰਿ ਅਗਿਆਨੁ ਦੁਖੁ ਭਰਮੁ ਹੈ ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨਿ ਗਵਾਈ ॥: Within is the ignorance, pain and doubt; it is through the Guru-given Wisdom that one is rid of these. (sggs 1291).

Our Mayaic mind (instinctive, deluded, or conditioned) has a way of casting shadows over the natural radiance of the Inner Light (Jot, Mool…). Doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ) is the byproduct of the Mayaic intellect (Budhi) inability to cope with This Light.

When we depend on Mayaic intellect for meaningful answers, the Mayaic mind (ਮਾਇਕੀ ਮਨ) will break down in doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ).

Being a great trickster, the conditioned mind gives rise to false self-identification with the  body consciousness, resulting in forgetfulness of its Tru Nature (Jot Saroop). Due to blind attachment to the body-frame, we are continually taking care of this body that anything can knock it down; and so we are living in a constant state of fear.

Doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ) is also the root cause of our Haumai (false ego-sense). Thus, doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ) is a crushing load on the soul. This human life is an opportunity to unload ourselves. We have the choice – either we can chose to carry these loads around longer and keep suffering, or we can chose to end here and now.

  • ਹਉਮੈ ਮੋਹ ਭਰਮ ਭੈ ਭਾਰ ॥: Egotism, attachment, doubt and fear are loads. (sggs 292).

Doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ) fragments the mind. So, essentially it leads to negative thoughts, negative decisions, negative actions, negative tendencies, and, of course, negative reactions — the Saakat, Mayadhaaree, or Manmukh lifestyle. Fear makes our mind weak; and thus makes it yield to bad thinking (Soch)!

  • ਮਨ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਹਉਮੈ ਰੋਗੁ ਹੈ ਭ੍ਰਮਿ ਭੂਲੇ ਮਨਮੁਖ ਦੁਰਜਨਾ ॥: 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).

Lack of fearlessness creates attachment, anger, resentment, loss of memory, inability to face a critical moment, etc. It this creates a lifestyle of misappropriation of everything in the name of livelihood, possessiveness, Bikaar (lust, anger, greed, etc.) …

  • ਨਾਨਕ ਮੁਸੈ ਗਿਆਨ ਵਿਹੂਣੀ ਖਾਇ ਗਇਆ ਜਮਕਾਲੁ ॥੧॥: O Nanak! Without the Divine Wisdom, one is being plundered, and devoured by “Jamkaalu” (fear of death, doubt…). ||1|| (sggs 465).

Clearly, for the doubt-ridden mind to become Enlightened and fearless, doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ) and all related current of the vibration of fear has to be reversed — bring in the opposite vibration of Wisdom (Aatam-Giaan) and behold the magic transformation!

  • ਅੰਤਰਿ ਭਰਮੁ ਗਇਆ ਭਉ ਭਾਗਾ ॥: (By holding tight to Gur-Giaan or Gur-Wisdom) Doubt gets eliminated from within, and fear runs away (sggs 1061).

It brings us to this question: If destruction of doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ) results in fearlessness, then how can it be destroyed? The Gurbani teaches us precisely that.

The Gurbani assures us doubt (Bharam) can be destroyed by the Grace of the Gur-Giaan (“ਗੁਰ ਪਰਸਾਦਿ”: ਗੁਰੂ ਦੇ ਗਿਆਨ ਦੀ ਕਿਰਪਾ ਨਾਲ-through the Knowledge of the Gurbani.

  • ਗੁਰ ਪਰਸਾਦਿ ਭਰਮ ਕਾ ਨਾਸੁ ॥: By the Grace of the Gur-Giaan or Wisdom, doubt is dispelled. (sggs 294).
  • ਬਿਨੁ ਸਬਦੈ ਭਰਮੁ ਨ ਚੂਕਈ ਨਾ ਵਿਚਹੁ ਹਉਮੈ ਜਾਇ ॥੬॥: Without the Shabad, doubt is not dispelled, and egotism is not eliminated from within. ||6|| (sggs 67).

In other words, it’s only the magic of the Gur-Giaan (Divine Wisdom or Bibek-Budhi of the Gurbani…) that can lift the doubt-ridden mind into the Inner Light, destroying the formidable fortress of doubt (Bharam-ਭਰਮ), Maya, duality, ignorance, false ego-sense, Bikaars…

  • ਦੇਖੌ ਭਾਈ ਗ੍ਹਾਨ ਕੀ ਆਈ ਆਂਧੀ ॥ ਸਭੈ ਉਡਾਨੀ ਭ੍ਰਮ ਕੀ ਟਾਟੀ ਰਹੈ ਨ ਮਾਇਆ ਬਾਂਧੀ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: Behold, O brother! (When) the storm of Spiritual Wisdom comes, (then) the thatched hut of doubt gets blown away; supported by bonds of Maya (this thatched hut of doubt) cannot continue to remain behind (the storm of Spiritual Wisdom or Aatam-Giaan). ||1||Pause|| (sggs 331).

In nutshell, through the earnest search (ਖੋਜ), churning the Gurbani,  or Shabad-Vichaar, the Light of Wisdom (Aatam-Giaan) must enter in the dark corners and recesses of the doubt-ridden or ignorant mind! As we engage in Shabad-Vichaar (Reflections on the Gurbani), we begin to reprogram the mind and mold it like a potter molds clay. We become more conscious of our lack of fearlessness.

For this to happen, the mind must rest in Truth. In other words, by becoming the Gurmukh, when the Heart is filled with the Pure Fear of the One (abidance or Love or reverence of Hukam, ਹੁਕਮ ਦਾ ਅਦਬ-ਸਤਕਾਰ, ਪ੍ਰੇਮ…), detachment (“ਬੈਰਾਗੁ”) arises within and all fears depart! The Gurbani confirms as follows:

  • ਡਡਾ ਡਰ ਉਪਜੇ ਡਰੁ ਜਾਈ ॥ ਤਾ ਡਰ ਮਹਿ ਡਰੁ ਰਹਿਆ ਸਮਾਈ ॥ ਜਉ ਡਰ ਡਰੈ ਤ ਫਿਰਿ ਡਰੁ ਲਾਗੈ ॥ ਨਿਡਰ ਹੂਆ ਡਰੁ ਉਰ ਹੋਇ ਭਾਗੈ ॥੧੯॥: DADDA (a letter of the Gurmukhi alphabet): When the Fear (of the One) wells up, (worldly) fears depart. (Worldly) fears are absorbed into that Fear. When (anyone) rejects the Fear (of the One), then (worldly) fears again cling to (him). (But, by keeping the Fear of the One in his mind, if he) becomes fearless, then fears (of his mind) run away. ||19|| (sggs 341).
  • ਹਮਰਾ ਭਰਮੁ ਗਇਆ ਭਉ ਭਾਗਾ ॥ ਜਬ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮ ਚਿਤੁ ਲਾਗਾ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: With the departure of my doubt, (my) fear has fled away. Now, since my consciousness is attached to the Naam (Wisdom, Virtues, Truth…). ||1||Pause||  (sggs 655).
  • ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਭ੍ਰਮ ਭੈ ਮੋਹ ਮਿਟਾਇਆ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਤੇਹ ਪਰਮ ਸੁਖ ਪਾਇਆ ॥੪੦॥: By becoming the Gurmukh, who have effaced their doubt, fear and worldly attachment, O Nanak! they realize the supreme Sukh (Bliss…). (sggs 258).

Thus, proper understanding of the Gurbani (ਸੂਝ-ਬੂਝ, Giaan, Bibek…) leads to realization of the state of fearlessness (“ਨਿਰਭੈ ਪਦੁ”). Simply put: One who has realized his Mool, Blissful Nature…) within gains fearlessness, Eternal Joy, Bliss…

8 replies on “Fearlessness”

By the Fear of One….I think you don’t mean panic, shraap etc. Because our Guruji is Mith Boleraaji…He is a ocean of love. For this wat I think you mean the Fear of Wrong Deeds should be there with a love for Divine…Than a Person will be become courageous and fearless…. Bhul Chuk Maaf ji..

By the Fear of One….I think you don’t mean panic, shraap etc.

You are correct!
Many thanks Chitranjan Dev Ji for taking the time to respond to this post!

Thanks for sharing your knowledge of Gurubani. I have a quick question, when you mention “inner light” ” “Enlightened” do you mean it literally or figuratively ? I mean when someone is blessed by the Guru’s Knowledge does he or she actually experiences light when they go inward deed into meditation ? Thanks in advance for clarity.

Thanks Gurmuk Singh Ji for taking the time to respond to this post! And welcome to the Gurbani Blog Ji!

In nutshell, the light mentioned in the Gurbani must be understood in the metaphorical sense. It is the Light of Divine Wisdom (Aatam-Giaan, ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਦਾ ਚਾਨਣ…) that dispels man’s ignorance of his Mool (Source, Origin, Jot…).
• ਮੰਦਰਿ ਮੇਰੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਉਜਾਰਾ ॥: Mandari merai Sabadi ujaaraa: In the temple (of my Heart), shines (ਸਹੀ ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਦਾ ਚਾਨਣ) the light of the Shabad (sggs 384).
• ਭਇਓ ਪ੍ਰਗਾਸੁ ਸਰਬ ਉਜੀਆਰਾ ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਮਨਹਿ ਪ੍ਰਗਟਾਇਓ ॥: Bhaio pragaasu sarab ujiaaraa Gur giaanu manhi pragataaio (sggs 209).
• ਗੁਰਮਤੀ ਆਪੁ ਪਛਾਣਿਆ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮ ਪਰਗਾਸੁ ॥: Gurmatee aapu pachhaaniaa Raam naam paragaasu (sggs 86).
• ਗੁਰਬਾਣੀ ਇਸੁ ਜਗ ਮਹਿ ਚਾਨਣੁ ਕਰਮਿ ਵਸੈ ਮਨਿ ਆਏ ॥੧॥: Gurbani isu jag mahi chaananu karami vasai mani aaye ||1||(sggs 67).
• ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨ ਅੰਜਨੁ ਸਚੁ ਨੇਤ੍ਰੀ ਪਾਇਆ ॥ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਚਾਨਣੁ ਅਗਿਆਨੁ ਅੰਧੇਰੁ ਗਵਾਇਆ ॥: Gur giaan anjanu sachu netree paaiaa. Antari chaananu agiaanu andheru gavaaiaa (sggs 124).
• ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪ੍ਰਚੰਡੁ ਬਲਾਇਆ ਅਗਿਆਨੁ ਅੰਧੇਰਾ ਜਾਇ ॥੨॥: Gur giaanu parchandu balaaiaa agiaanu anadheraa jaai ||2|| (sggs 29).

Gurparsad is essential to remove Bharam as you pointed out “Gurparsad bharam ka naas”:
ਪਾਵੈ ਤ ਸੋ ਜਨੁ ਦੇਹਿ ਜਿਸ ਨੋ ਹੋਰਿ ਕਿਆ ਕਰਹਿ ਵੇਚਾਰਿਆ ॥ (Raag Raakali M. 3, GGS. 918-1).
He alone receives it, unto whom You give it; what can the other poor wretched beings do?
ਇਕਿ ਭਰਮਿ ਭੂਲੇ ਫਿਰਹਿ ਦਹ ਦਿਸਿ ਇਕਿ ਨਾਮਿ ਲਾਗਿ ਸਵਾਰਿਆ ॥
Some are deluded by doubt, wandering in the ten directions; some are adorned with attachment to the Naam.
ਗੁਰ ਪਰਸਾਦੀ ਮਨੁ ਭਇਆ ਨਿਰਮਲੁ ਜਿਨਾ ਭਾਣਾ ਭਾਵਏ ॥
By Guru’s Grace, the mind becomes immaculate and pure, for those who follow God’s Will.
ਕਹੈ ਨਾਨਕੁ ਜਿਸੁ ਦੇਹਿ ਪਿਆਰੇ ਸੋਈ ਜਨੁ ਪਾਵਏ ॥੮॥
Says Nanak, he alone receives it, unto whom You give it, O Beloved Lord. ||8||
ਇਕਿ ਭਰਮੇ ਇਕਿ ਭਗਤੀ ਲਾਏ ॥(Raag Raamkali M. 5, GGS. 894-7).
Some wander around, while others are linked to His devotional worship.
ਅਪਣਾ ਕੀਆ ਆਪਿ ਜਣਾਏ ॥੩॥
He Himself makes Himself known. ||3||

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