The Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS) has given this ‘Manntaanee‘ (i.e. advice, instruction, Updesh, Mantra, ਉਦਾਹਰਣ etc.): Amrit Naam is the priceless Gem for it bestows Gurmukh Lifestyle (spiritual or divine life-ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ) that transcends the negative impact of Maya, Bharam or doubt, the fear of death, freedom or liberation from slavery of outer domination etc.

  • ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਨਾਮੁ ਨਿਰਮੋਲਕੁ ਹੀਰਾ ਗੁਰਿ ਦੀਨੋ ਮੰਤਾਨੀ ॥ ਡਿਗੈ ਨ ਡੋਲੈ ਦ੍ਰਿੜੁ ਕਰਿ ਰਹਿਓ ਪੂਰਨ ਹੋਇ ਤ੍ਰਿਪਤਾਨੀ ॥੨॥: Amrit Naam is the priceless Gem (a valuable resource – guide for life). The Guru has given this advice. (Whosoever has taken this Gur-advice, his mind) becomes stabilized (within; does not waver or wander in Bikaar, Maya, etc.). (Such mind) becomes steady (strong, mature, etc.) and completely satisfied (contented, free of Maya’s hunger …). (sggs 671).

In the ‘Rahaaou‘ (ਰਹਾਉ) verse of the same Shabad, it is asserted that nothing else will do the trick (i.e. nor rituals or Karamkaand, nor counting beads-ਮਾਲਾ ਫੇਰਨੀ, nor ritual reading or Nit-Nems, nor Akhand Paaths, nor Langars (of food), nor Kaar-Sevaa, nor pilgrimage (Tirath Yaatra), nor ritual bathing and so on.

  • ਜੀਅ ਕੀ ਏਕੈ ਹੀ ਪਹਿ ਮਾਨੀ ॥ ਅਵਰਿ ਜਤਨ ਕਰਿ ਰਹੇ ਬਹੁਤੇਰੇ ਤਿਨ ਤਿਲੁ ਨਹੀ ਕੀਮਤਿ ਜਾਨੀ ॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: The mind is satisfied only with one (i.e. Naam: Wisdom or Giaan). People get tired of putting in all sorts of other efforts, but those efforts do not have have even a bit of value. ||Rahaaou|| (sggs 671).

Now – according to the Gurbani – what is Naam? First, consider the following verses.

  • ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਹੈ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੋ ਦੇਇ ਦ੍ਰਿੜਾਇ ॥: The Gur-Giaan (Spiritual Wisdom…) is the Naam Padaarath. (Hence, the Guru) makes the Hari Naam firm (resolved, stable, strong, properly understood, ਪੱਕਾ, ਦ੍ਰਿੜ, etc., in the mind of the sincere seeker of Truth – ਜਗ੍ਯਾਸੂ…). (sggs 759).
  • ਰਾਜਾ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮੁ ਮੋਰਾ ਬ੍ਰਹਮ ਗਿਆਨੁ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: Raam Naam is my Brahm Giaan (Divine Wisdom…). ||1||Pause|| (sggs 1159).
  • ਤਤੁ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਨਾਮ ॥: The Divine Wisdom is Amrit Naam (which bestows Spiritual Life). (sggs 1146).
  • ਐਸਾ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਨਾਮੁ ॥ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਪਾਵਸਿ ਰਸਿ ਰਸਿ ਮਾਨੁ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: Such is the Divine Wisdom (Giaan Padaarath), the Naam; the Gurmukh (Spiritual Being) obtains Honor (here and hereafter) by relishing it. ||1||Pause|| (sggs 831).
  • ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਨਿਰੰਜਨ ਪਾਇਆ ਗਿਆਨ ਕਾਇਆ ਰਸ ਭੋਗੰ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: One who has obtained the Amrit Naam, his mind enjoys the Pleasure (ਆਤਮਕ ਆਨੰਦ) of Giaan (Spiritual Wisdom, ਪਰਮਾਤਮਾ ਨਾਲ ਡੂੰਘੀ ਜਾਣ-ਪਛਾਣ…). ||1||Pause|| (sggs 360).
  • ਗਿਆਨਿ ਰਤਨਿ ਘਟਿ ਚਾਨਣੁ ਹੋਆ ਨਾਨਕ ਨਾਮ ਪਿਆਰੋ ॥: O Nanak! (In whom) The Light of the Jewel of the Giaan (Spiritual Wisdom, Gur-Giaan…) shines within the Heart, (he) loves the Naam. (sggs 584).

Thus, in essence, Naam is essentially the Spiritual Wisdom or the Divine Knowledge of the Gurbani (Aatam-Giaan, Hukam, Shabad, Spiritual Understanding, ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਦੀ ਡੂੰਘੀ ਸੂਝ-ਬੂਝ…).

In other words, Naam Padaarath and Giaan Padaarath are essentially one and the same. All of this is realized within through the ‘Gur Parasaadi‘ (i.e. Grace of the Gur-Giaan or Wisdom…).

  • ਨਾਨਕ ਸਬਦੁ ਪਛਾਣੀਐ ਨਾਮੁ ਵਸੈ ਮਨਿ ਆਇ ॥੧॥: O Nanak! Recognizing the Shabad, the Naam comes to abide in the mind (sggs 646).
  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਜਿਸ ਨੋ ਮਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਸੋ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਮਾਹਿ ਸਮਾਨਾ ॥ ਇਹ ਬਾਣੀ ਜੋ ਜੀਅਹੁ ਜਾਣੈ ਤਿਸੁ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਰਵੈ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮਾ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: One who Internalizes the Enlightening Message of the Satgur’s Shabad, remains absorbed in it (i.e. Wisdom / Virtues). Divine Naam (Wisdom / Virtues) always remains enshrined in a person’s mind who understands and follows the Gurbani (SGGS) from the core of his being. ||1||Pause|| (sggs 797).
  • ਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਹੁਕਮੁ ਪਛਾਣੁ ॥੮॥: Through the Guru-Shabad, recognize the Hukam. ||8|| (sggs 223).

Next question: Where is this Naam located?

Again, the Gur-Advice is Naam is located within (‘ਦੇਹੀ ਮਹਿ ਇਸ ਕਾ ਬਿਸ੍ਰਾਮੁ’).

In other words, we don’t need any person to blow it into our ears or spit it into our mouth! That’s all fraud!

  • ਨਉ ਨਿਧਿ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤੁ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਕਾ ਨਾਮੁ ॥ ਦੇਹੀ ਮਹਿ ਇਸ ਕਾ ਬਿਸ੍ਰਾਮੁ ॥: God’s Amrit Naam is like the nine treasures of the world (NOTE: Gurbani Re-defines the Pujaaree’s nine treasures here). It dwells in the human body itself. (sggs 293).
  • ਇਹੁ ਮਨੁ ਦੇਹੀ ਸੋਧਿ ਤੂੰ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦਿ ਵੀਚਾਰਿ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਇਸੁ ਦੇਹੀ ਵਿਚਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਨਿਧਾਨੁ ਹੈ ਪਾਈਐ ਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਹੇਤਿ ਅਪਾਰਿ ॥੮॥੧੦॥੩੨॥: Search this mind and body, by the Gur-Shabad-Vichaar (by reflecting on the Gur-Shabad…). O Nanak! Within this body is the Treasure of the Naam; it is attained through the unbounded love for the Gur (Gur-Giaan…) ||8||10||32|| (sggs 427).
  • ਸਰੀਰਹੁ ਭਾਲਣਿ ਕੋ ਬਾਹਰਿ ਜਾਏ ॥ ਨਾਮੁ ਨ ਲਹੈ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਵੇਗਾਰਿ ਦੁਖੁ ਪਾਏ ॥: Those who search for the Divine outside the body will not receive the Naam; consequently, they will suffer the terrible pains of sense-slavery (sggs 1346).

Next question: Where is the Giaan Wisdom located?

Again, the Gur-Advice is that since the Naam is within, so is the Giaan or Wisdom.

  • ਅੰਤਰਿ ਤੀਰਥੁ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਹੈ ਸਤਿਗੁਰਿ ਦੀਆ ਬੁਝਾਇ ॥: Deep within is the sacred shrine (Teerath) of Giaan (Spiritual Wisdom…), which the Satigur has revealed (sggs 587).

Next question: How does one awaken (realized…) it?

Again, the Gur-Advice is to Awaken it with the constant Shabad-Vichaar.

  • ਅੰਤਰਿ ਖੂਹਟਾ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤਿ ਭਰਿਆ ਸਬਦੇ ਕਾਢਿ ਪੀਐ ਪਨਿਹਾਰੀ ॥: Deep Within this body is the well overflowing with the Amrit; the Water-carrier (one engaged in Naam-Jap or understanding the Gur-Shabad) draws and drinks it through the Shabad (sggs 570).
  • ਇਸੁ ਕਾਇਆ ਅੰਦਰਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਨਉ ਨਿਧਿ ਪਾਈਐ ਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਵੀਚਾਰਾ ॥੪॥: By reflecting on the Gur-Shabad, Naam is realized within the mind, which is like obtaining all treasures (of this world). (sggs 754).

Next question: What is Shabad-Vichaar?

It is essentially constant churning of the Gurbani. By churning the cream or curd, butter is obtained. Similarly, by churning the Gurbani the butter of Naam is obtained.

The Gurbani confirms this as follows:

  • ਗੁਰਮਤੀ ਦਧਿ ਮਥੀਐ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤੁ ਪਾਈਐ ਨਾਮੁ ਨਿਧਾਨਾ ॥: If we churn yoghurt then butter is found (in the same way) if we take Gurmat then the Treasure of Amrit of Naam (Wisdom) is obtained. (sggs 1009).
  • ਜਨੁ ਨਾਨਕੁ ਬੋਲੇ ਗੁਣ ਬਾਣੀ ਗੁਰਬਾਣੀ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮਿ ਸਮਾਇਆ ॥੪॥੫॥: ‘Janu’ Nanak utters the Bani of the Divine Virtues [i.e., the Divine Wisdom (‘Gur-ਗੁਰ’) and the Divine Virtues (‘Gun-ਗੁਣ’) are embedded in the Gurbani]; one gets absorbed in the Hari Naam through the Gurbani (i.e., living by the Divine Wisdom and the Divine Virtues of the Gurbani). ||4||5|| (sggs 494).
  • ਸਰੀਰਿ ਸਰੋਵਰਿ ਗੁਣ ਪਰਗਟਿ ਕੀਏ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਮਥਿ ਤਤੁ ਕਢੀਏ ॥੪॥੫॥੫੭॥: The body-Srovar (body-pool) yields Virtues. O Nanak! By becoming the Gurmukh, who churns this (body-pool through Shabad-Vichaar), discovers Knowledge (ਤੱਤ ਗਿਆਨ…). ||4||5||57|| (sggs 367).


  1. Thank you Bhai Sahib Jio for sharing your Vichaar.
    • ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਹੈ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੋ ਦੇਇ ਦ੍ਰਿੜਾਇ ॥ (sggs 759).
    • ਐਸਾ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਨਾਮੁ ॥ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਪਾਵਸਿ ਰਸਿ ਰਸਿ ਮਾਨੁ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ (sggs 831).

  2. I made the below comment on another forum for a similar discussion-

    *****(((((”I like to think of NAAM as the highest level of consciousness of which this consciousness is manifest in all of us and creation. Our consciousness is like a power, force or jyot from the original Noor conscious.
    AND then, I like to think of SHABAD as the Vibration of this naam, that again, is within all of us and in all of creation.

    SHABAD is actually too huge an entity to try and define/describe/confine in a box or attach some label. I think that it’s meaning and essence can change for all of us as we progress.

    ”Naam jinkey mann vasia, vajey shabad ganarey.” – When you connect to or acknowledge the naam in the mind, then in this same mind you can feel/hear the vibration of the shabad.))))*******
    In terms of naam simran, amrit and shabad are both about perceptions !
    Amrit is the taste perception of naam that overides any other worldly taste encounters. Likewise, shabad is the sound/dhuni/vibration in the inner ears.

  3. One should consider a Quote from RAAG JAITSARI M4 as
    This clearly proves that the so far SECRET NAAMu is truely known by 4th NANAK.
    It is not that 4th NANAK did not give this known NAAMu in GuRbaanee.Therefore for knowing NAAMu (hither to Secret) one should carefully read the whole of Baanee thru 4th NANAK GuROO RAAM DAAS Ji ,one may be graced to know NAAMu I feel so.

  4. Thank you Bhai Sahib Jio!
    In fact the entire Gurbani is Naam only!!
    A person may not know or may not explain it, but the Gurbani certainly knows what the Naam is!!!!!! Just ask the Gurbani and it will explain as it is !!!!!!!
    ਖੋਜ ਬੂਝਿ ਜਉ ਕਰੈ ਬੀਚਾਰਾ ॥ ਤਉ ਭਵਜਲ ਤਰਤ ਨ ਲਾਵੈ ਬਾਰਾ ॥੪੦॥ (sggs 342).
    ਕਾਇਆ ਨਗਰੀ ਸਬਦੇ ਖੋਜੇ ਨਾਮੁ ਨਵੰ ਨਿਧਿ ਪਾਈ ॥੨੨॥ (sggs 910).

    In regard to “ਗੁੰਗੇ ਮਿਠਿਆਈ”:
    The Gurbani says:
    ਕਾਂਇ ਰੇ ਬਕਬਾਦੁ ਲਾਇਓ ॥ ਜਿਨਿ ਹਰਿ ਪਾਇਓ ਤਿਨਹਿ ਛਪਾਇਓ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: Kaani re bakabaadu laaio. Jini hari paaio tinahi shapaaio ||1|| Rahaaou || (sggs 718).

    Bhagat Kabeer Sahib says – although I tell people what I have seen (or personally Realized), but no one can be satisfied with my words (or no one would believe)!
    ਕਬੀਰ ਦੇਖਿ ਕੈ ਕਿਹ ਕਹਉ ਕਹੇ ਨ ਕੋ ਪਤੀਆਇ ॥ ਹਰਿ ਜੈਸਾ ਤੈਸਾ ਉਹੀ ਰਹਉ ਹਰਖਿ ਗੁਨ ਗਾਇ ॥੧੨੨॥: Kabeer dekhi kai kih kahaou kahe n ko patiaai… (sggs 1371).
    ਕਬੀਰਾ ਏਕੁ ਅਚੰਭਉ ਦੇਖਿਓ ਹੀਰਾ ਹਾਟ ਬਿਕਾਇ ॥ ਬਨਜਨਹਾਰੇ ਬਾਹਰਾ ਕਉਡੀ ਬਦਲੈ ਜਾਇ ॥੧੫੪॥: (sggs 1372).
    ਕਬੀਰ ਰਾਮ ਰਤਨੁ ਮੁਖੁ ਕੋਥਰੀ ਪਾਰਖ ਆਗੈ ਖੋਲਿ ॥: Kabeer raam ratanu mukhu kotharee paarakh aagai kholi (sggs 1376).

    We know the Bhagat cannot hide because they have already written so many Granths in different parts of the world. For example, they have already spoken through the Gurbani (1,430 pages!), thus helping the whole world! What is it that the Gurbani is trying to convey here by the analogy of mute’s candy (“ਗੂੰਗੇ ਮਿਠਿਆਈ”)?

    As we can see, it is a very important topic. Therefore, we will have a separate post dedicated to just this topic alone in a near future.

  5. I refer to the coment and there comes a
    Is it so that any of our GuROO did not explain or define NAAM whereas as the whole GURBAANEE is full of NAAMu only.

    By saying so
    Only those who taste it know its sweet taste, like the mute, who eats the candy, and only smiles
    This atatement gives the understanding about the taste of SWEET ,it does not mean that what is SWEET can not be known.
    As I understand the sincere analysis of the word GuROO itself should be explaining or defining NAAMu. The problem is that we expect this explanation or definition from some
    so called MAHAPURUSH instead we must know this from THE WORD GuROO itself.

  6. No one can Explain or define Nam…
    Once Sant Atter Singh Ji was called upon to the Stage to tell about Nam. Sant Atter Singh Ji has come to the stage/mike. He stood calmly for few minutes.After few minutes Sangat asks eagerly/impatiently from Sanji, then Santji replied very politely that he cannot Explain or define the meaning of Nam because Nam is a thing which can only be feel by one’s soul & may not be Explained or cannot be written or spoken in words
    ਜਿਨ ਚਾਖਿਆ ਸੇਈ ਸਾਦੁ ਜਾਣਨਿ ਜਿਉ ਗੁੰਗੇ ਮਿਠਿਆਈ ॥
    Only those who taste it know its sweet taste, like the mute, who eats the candy, and only smiles.

  7. Respected T. Singh ji,
    thank you for important discussion in your recent blog. There is important concept of amrit in your essay, have you written earlier about concept of amrit in gurubaani? Like to have the link.

  8. An excellent write-up to bring out the importance and uniqueness of Naam in Sikhi

    Sikhi does revolve around Naam. Gobind millan is through Naam only:-

    ਨਾਮ ਸੰਗਿ ਜਿਸ ਕਾ ਮਨੁ ਮਾਨਿਆ ॥ (raag Gauri M. 5, GGS. 281-11).
    Naam Sang Jis Kaa Man Maaniaa ||
    One whose mind accepts the Company of the Naam,

    ਨਾਨਕ ਤਿਨਹਿ ਨਿਰੰਜਨੁ ਜਾਨਿਆ ॥੩॥
    Naanak Thinehi Niranjan Jaaniaa ||3||
    The Name of the Lord, O Nanak, knows the Immaculate Lord. ||3||

  9. In Gurbaanee the emphasis is all on NAAMu (HARiNAAMu and /or RAAM NNAMu) yet to be
    understood as per advice from GuROO(SABADu) SGGS ji.

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