Giaan Kharrag or Sword

Giaan (ਗਿਆਨ) = Divine Knowledge, Spiritual Wisdom …

Kharrag = Sword, ਕਿਰਪਾਨ, ਤਲਵਾਰ …

Combinging both terms – Giaan Kharrag = ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਦੀ ਸੂਝ ਦੀ ਤਲਵਾਰ, the Sword of Spiritual Wisdom, the Sword of Divine Knowledge, and so on.

Sword (Kirpaan) is used in the Gurbani as a metaphor for Gian (pronounced Giaan; also spelt Giyan or Janan etc.); because the darkness of ignorance (Maya, delusion, duality, foolishness, Dubidhaa, Avidiaa, ਪਰਾਈ ਮਤ, ਮਨ ਮਤ, etc.) can only be dispelled in the Light of the Giaan. In other words, the All-pervading Divine Presence within can only be experienced with the Spiritual Wisdom.

Thus, the Gurbani urges us to take up Giaan Kharrag – the sword of Divine Knowledge.

It is really tragic, strange, infelicitous, regrettable, and unfortunate that most of the Sikh writers, researchers, scholars (Pundits, ਵਿੱਦਵਾਨ), Bhais, Raagees, Kathaakaars, etc., ignore this very valuable Message or Truth of the Gurbani. Why, we must ask? Is it the Golak (money!)?

Without applying the Truth of the Gur-Shabad, how a Sikh can hope for any Spiritual Unfoldment? According to the Gurbani, mere talk, mere reading of the gurbani, or mere Bhekh (religious garbs, symbols, etc.), etc., will not do the trick! In nutshell, the Gurbani urges us to take up the Sword of the Giaan (Naam, Shabad-Vichaar, Aatm-Giaan, Brahm-Giaan, Gurmat, etc.) and conquer the Mayaic or instinctive mind.

  • ਗਿਆਨ ਖੜਗੁ ਲੈ ਮਨ ਸਿਉ ਲੂਝੈ ਮਨਸਾ ਮਨਹਿ ਸਮਾਈ ਹੇ ॥੩॥: Giaan kharragu lai mann siou loojhai manasaa manahi samaaee hae ||3||: Taking up the Sword of the Spiritual Wisdom, struggle with the mind, and (all Mayaic desires, thoughts, ਫੁਰਨੇ, ਖੋਟੀ ਮਨਸਾ, etc., ) born of the mind are nipped within the mind (ਮਨ ਦੇ ਵਿਚ ਹੀ ਮੁੱਕ ਜਾਂਦੇ ਹਨ). ||3|| (sggs 1022).
  • ਕਾਢਿ ਖੜਗੁ ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਕਰਾਰਾ ਬਿਖੁ ਛੇਦਿ ਛੇਦਿ ਰਸੁ ਪੀਜੈ ॥੩॥: Kaadhi kharrg gur giaan karaaraa bikhu chhedi achhedi rasu peejai ||3||: Drawing out the Mighty Sword of the (ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨ) Gur’s Spiritual Wisdom, cut (ਵੱਢ ਵੱਢ ਕੇ) the poisonous (snake of Maya); and (thus one can) drink in the (Spiritual) Essence (ਆਤਮ ਰਸ, ਨਾਮ ਰਸ, ਗਿਆਨ ਰਸ …). ||3|| (sggs 1324).
  • ਗਿਆਨ ਖੜਗ ਪੰਚ ਦੂਤ ਸੰਘਾਰੇ ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਜਾਗੈ ਸੋਇ ॥: Giaan kharrag panch doot sanghaare gurmati jaagai soi: (The person who) With the sword of the Spiritual Wisdom kill the five demons (i.e., ego and all its faults – lust, anger,greed, etc.), (he) remains Awake and Aware because of the Gurmat (Teaching of the Gurbani…). (sggs 1414).

The “Giaan Kharrag” is the Sword of the Aatmaa. For Aatma can only wear the sword of the Giaan (Wisdom, etc.). The sword of the steel is not for the Aatmaa (Divine Soul – “ਆਤਮ ਦੇਵ”); for the Aatmaa cannot wear a steel sword. The sword of steel is only for the body, which is nothing but Maya (Koorr-ਕੂੜ, fleeting, perishable, temporary, ਸੁਪਨਾ, etc.).

  • ਮਤਿ ਗੁਰ ਆਤਮ ਦੇਵ ਦੀ ਖੜਗਿ ਜੋਰਿ ਪਰਾਕੁਇ ਜੀਅ ਦੈ ॥: Mati gur aatam dev dee kharrag jori paraakui jeea dai: The Gur implanted the Almighty Sword of the Teachings (ਸਿੱਖਿਆ…) to illuminate the Divine Soul (ਆਤਮ ਦੇਵ…). (sggs 966).

In conclusion, the Gurbani asks us to orient the life to the Giaan. But, what is the real proof of Spiritual Wisdom in a person? The only way to know if a person is spiritually Wise (Giaanee) is to watch his mouth and actions; for the wisdom shows its true face in his actions and as soon as he opens his mouth (ਉਘਰਿ ਗਇਆ ਜੈਸਾ ਖੋਟਾ ਢਬੂਆ ਨਦਰਿ ਸਰਾਫਾ ਆਇਆ – sggs 381).

In nutshell, the real proof of Spiritual Wisdom is the annihilation of the Haumai (egotism and all its faults: lust, anger, greed, etc.). In other words, Realization of the True Spiritual Wisdom is the realization of the Truth, Mool (Source…), etc. This is the essence of Bhagti (ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਕਾ ਖੜਗੁ ਸੰਜੋਉ ਹਰਿ ਭਗਤਿ ਹੈ – sggs 312).

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰਿ ਗਿਆਨ ਖੜਗੁ ਹਥਿ ਦੀਨਾ ਜਮਕੰਕਰ ਮਾਰਿ ਬਿਦਾਰੇ ॥: In the hands of (whosoever) the Satgur has placed the Sword of Spiritual Wisdom, (he) has overcome and killed the ‘Jamkankar’ (i.e., Bikaar: lust, anger, greed, etc.). (sggs 574).


  1. Thank you Veer Jiou.
    ਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਾਇਆ ਅਤਿ ਖੜਗੁ ਕਰਾਰਾ ॥ (sggs 1087).
    ਮੇਰੇ ਠਾਕੁਰ ਕੈ ਦੀਬਾਨਿ ਖਬਰਿ ਹਈ ਗੁਰਿ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਖੜਗੁ ਲੈ ਮਾਰੇ ॥੭॥ (sggs 983).

  2. Nice enlightening piece on Giyaan Kharag (GK). Veer Ji you are employing your GK not only to win over the five thieves who invade on a daily basis, but additionally, through these columns, are helping your readers to sharpen their GKs too. Thanks for your selfless endeavor.

    Deep Regards

Comments are closed.