Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS) puts forth a universal Vichaar-Dhaaraa (Thought, Bibek or discernment, Giaan or Wisdom, view, etc.).
We are given this Bani — the Treasure of Wisdom — for the purpose of enlightening our minds by taking this Wisdom in.
- ਪੀਊ ਦਾਦੇ ਕਾ ਖੋਲਿ ਡਿਠਾ ਖਜਾਨਾ ॥ ਤਾ ਮੇਰੈ ਮਨਿ ਭਇਆ ਨਿਧਾਨਾ ॥੧॥: When I opened the treasure of the Bani of Guru Nanak Dev and all the Gurus (i.e., when I understood the Bani of SGGS – the Bani of commonsense, Wisdom, Bibek…), then my mind got filled with (commonsense, wisdom, Bibek-Budh) ||1||. (sggs 186).
However, to take the Gur-Wisdom or not is up to each one of us! We all have the freedom to chose.
- ਤੇ ਨਰ ਵਿਰਲੇ ਜਾਣੀਅਹਿ ਜਿਨ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਮੁਰਾਰਿ ॥੪॥: Those who have the Divine Knowledge within, are known to be very rare. ||4|| (sggs 1331).
- ਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਾਏ ਜਨੁ ਕੋਇ ॥: Those who obtain Wisdom from the Guru are very rare. (sggs 158).
- ਕਬੀਰਾ ਏਕੁ ਅਚੰਭਉ ਦੇਖਿਓ ਹੀਰਾ ਹਾਟ ਬਿਕਾਇ ॥ ਬਨਜਨਹਾਰੇ ਬਾਹਰਾ ਕਉਡੀ ਬਦਲੈ ਜਾਇ ॥੧੫੪॥: O Kabeer! I saw an astonishing thing. A Jewel (ਤੱਤ ਗਿਆਨ, Knowledge…) is being sold in a store. Because there is no buyer (taker, receiver, appreciator, interested…), it is going in exchange for a shell (i.e., Maya…)! ||154|| (sggs 1372).
- ਸਾਚੇ ਕਾ ਗਾਹਕੁ ਵਿਰਲਾ ਕੋ ਜਾਣੁ ॥: Know that a purchaser (taker, receiver, appreciator, interested…) of the True (Naam – Truth, Wisdom, Virtues…) is very rare (sggs 664).
If we are unwilling to change or take the Knowledge, the SGGS does not and cannot thrust it upon anybody by force (ਧੱਕੇ ਨਾਲ) or fright.
If Sikhi could be thrusted upon somebody by force, Baabaa Nanak would have thrusted it upon his two sons Sri Chand and Lakhmi Das; Guru Angad Dev Ji would have thrusted it upon his sons Daatu and Daasu; Guru Amardas Ji would have thrusted it upon his sons Mohan and Moharee; Guru Ramdas Ji would have thrusted it upon his son Prithy Chand; Guru Har Rai Ji would have thrusted it upon his son Ram Rai; and so on!
- ਪੁਤ੍ਰੀ ਕਉਲੁ ਨ ਪਾਲਿਓ ਕਰਿ ਪੀਰਹੁ ਕੰਨ੍ਹ੍ਹ ਮੁਰਟੀਐ ॥ ਦਿਲਿ ਖੋਟੈ ਆਕੀ ਫਿਰਨ੍ਹ੍ਹਿ ਬੰਨ੍ਹ੍ਹਿ ਭਾਰੁ ਉਚਾਇਨ੍ਹ੍ਹਿ ਛਟੀਐ ॥: Sons (of Baabaa Nanak: Sri Chand and Lakhmi Das) did not obey (Baabaa Nanak’s) Word; they turned their backs on Him as Guru. The evil-hearted ones become rebellious; they carry loads (of vices, Bikaar, defects…) on their backs. (sggs 967).
- ਮੋਹਣੁ ਕਮਲਾ ਹੋਇਆ ਚਉਬਾਰਾ ਮੋਹਰੀ ਮਨਾਇਆ॥ ਮੀਣਾ ਹੋਇਆ ਪਿਰਥੀਆ ਕਰਿ ਕਰਿ ਤੋਂਡਕ ਬਰਲੁ ਚਲਾਇਆ॥: Mohan (son of Guru Amardas) got insane (ਝੱਲਾ, ਬੇ-ਅਕਲ…) and Mohart (the second son) lived in a lofty house and started getting served by the people. Prithy Chand (son of Guru Ramdas) came out as dissembling scoundrel and using his oblique nature spread his mental sickness all round. (Bhai Gurdas, Vaar 26 Paurhee 33).
The SGGS puts the responsibility directly on each one of us for: (1) taking the Giaan or Knowledge (2) and then living that Knowledge in daily life (ਅਮਲ, Gurmukh Lifestyle).
- ਆਪਣ ਹਥੀ ਆਪਣਾ ਆਪੇ ਹੀ ਕਾਜੁ ਸਵਾਰੀਐ ॥੨੦॥: (So long there is breath – Praan) With own hands (with self-efforts: Shabad-Vichaar …), resolve your own affair yourself. ||20|| (sggs 474).
However, the Gurbani roars that — with the exception of a ‘rare‘ one — people are not interested to take the Divine Knowledge!
- ਰਾਮ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਪਾਇ ਕੈ ਕਬੀਰਾ ਗਾਂਠਿ ਨ ਖੋਲ੍ਹ੍ਹ ॥ ਨਹੀ ਪਟਣੁ ਨਹੀ ਪਾਰਖੂ ਨਹੀ ਗਾਹਕੁ ਨਹੀ ਮੋਲੁ ॥੨੩॥: O Kabeer! Upon realizing the Divine Naam (Wisdom, Virtues…), do not undo its knot (to who is not Paarkhoo or appraiser or assayer of Truth…). (The world is so engrossed in Maya that) there is no city (or market of Truth) to sell it; there is no appraiser of it; there is no customer of it; and cannot put price on it. ||23|| (sggs 1365).
And, that ‘rare’ one is called Gurmukh (Bhagat, Daas, Jan…) in the Gurbani — a Wise person, brave person, good person, virtuous person, fearless, blissful (Anand), pious person, Joyful, always positive, etc. (ਵਿਦਵਾਨ, ਬਹਾਦੁਰ, ਭਲਾ, ਨੇਕ, ਗੁਣੀ, ਖੁਸ਼, ਹਮੇਸ਼ਾ ਚੜ੍ਹਦੀ ਕਲਾ ਵਿਚ…).
- ਬਾਣੀ ਬਿਰਲਉ ਬੀਚਾਰਸੀ ਜੇ ਕੋ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਹੋਇ ॥: By becoming a Gurmukh, a rare one contemplates (ਵਿਚਾਰ, Reflection, spiritual Inquiry, etc.) the Bani. (sggs 935).
The question one may ask is why people lack interest in taking the Wisdom and then living it in daily life?
The Gurbani paints a real picture of the worldly people as follows:
- ਲਬੁ ਪਾਪੁ ਦੁਇ ਰਾਜਾ ਮਹਤਾ ਕੂੜੁ ਹੋਆ ਸਿਕਦਾਰੁ ॥ ਕਾਮੁ ਨੇਬੁ ਸਦਿ ਪੁਛੀਐ ਬਹਿ ਬਹਿ ਕਰੇ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ ॥ ਅੰਧੀ ਰਯਤਿ ਗਿਆਨ ਵਿਹੂਣੀ ਭਾਹਿ ਭਰੇ ਮੁਰਦਾਰੁ ॥: Greed and sin both have become the king and minister, and falsehood has become the tax collector. (In this assembly of greed, sin and falsehood) lust is as the assistant official, which is summoned and consulted; they all sit together and contemplate their (evil) plans. (Because of) deprived of the Divine Knowledge, people (as if have become mentally) blind (ignorant), and are engaged in gratifying their fire (of desires, Maya…). (sggs 469).
- ਬਾਬਾ ਮਾਇਆ ਮੋਹ ਹਿਤੁ ਕੀਨ੍ਹ੍ਹ ॥ ਜਿਨਿ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਰਤਨੁ ਹਿਰਿ ਲੀਨ੍ਹ੍ਹ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: O Baabaa! (I have) enshrined attachment (love and affection, ਮੋਹ-ਪਿਆਰ) for Maya, which has taken the Jewel of the Spiritual Wisdom away (from me). ||1||Pause|| (sggs 482).
As there is a regular mirror to look at one’s own face, similarly, the Gurbani is the Mirror of our minds.
The Gurbani’s mirror of the mind shows the mind its flaws, faults, defects, demerits, false ego-sense (Haumai), hypocrisy, fraud, deceptions, doubt, falsehood, Pakhand, duality, Bikaar (lust, anger, greed, etc.).
Corrupt individuals, including the crafty Pujaaree-Vaad, cannot face the Gurbani’s Truth, for the Gurbani’s Truth (or Giaan, Wisdom) frightens them and irritates them!
- ਜੇ ਕੋ ਬੋਲੈ ਸਚੁ ਕੂੜਾ ਜਲਿ ਜਾਵਈ ॥: If someone speaks the Truth, the false (one) is burnt (irritated). (sggs 646).
- ਜਿਨਾ ਅੰਦਰਿ ਕੂੜੁ ਵਰਤੈ ਸਚੁ ਨ ਭਾਵਈ ॥: Truth does not suit those who are permeated by falsehood (sggs 646).
Hence, at first, what the corrupt or Mayaic mind sees in the Mirror of the Gurbani will shake it to its core! As a result, the majority (99.9% category) will not like what they see in it.
In short, the Gurbani asserts falsehood cannot propagate Truth!
- ਕੂੜੈ ਕੀ ਪਾਲਿ ਵਿਚਹੁ ਨਿਕਲੈ ਸਚੁ ਵਸੈ ਮਨਿ ਆਇ ॥: (When) the wall of falsehood is torn down from within, Truth comes to dwell in the mind. (sggs 591).
The Gurbani further tells us that, there can be nothing but tumult (‘Rol Ghacholaa‘) in the mind tied to Maya! Consequently, those who are drowning in the ocean of Maya (i.e., Mayadhaaree, Manmukh, Saakat...) cannot pay attention to the Gur-Shabad!
In such depraved mental state, just as animals, he cannot have any interest in cultivating the Knowledge, let alone living it in daily life!
- ਬਿਨੁ ਬੂਝੇ ਪਸੂ ਕੀ ਨਿਆਈ ਭ੍ਰਮਿ ਮੋਹਿ ਬਿਆਪਿਓ ਮਾਇਆ ॥: Without understanding, (a person) remains like beast, and remains engrossed in Maya, doubt and attachment (i.e, Maya’s deception, bewilderment…). (sggs 1300).
Sikhi is in learning and Understanding Gurmat and living it in daily life.
Because, an uninterested or unwilling student will hear from one ear and let it out from the other! As the Gurbani says it’s as useless as blowing into bamboo — as you blow into bamboo from one side, air goes out from the other side!
- ਕਬੀਰ ਸਾਚਾ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਕਿਆ ਕਰੈ ਜਉ ਸਿਖਾ ਮਹਿ ਚੂਕ ॥ ਅੰਧੇ ਏਕ ਨ ਲਾਗਈ ਜਿਉ ਬਾਂਸੁ ਬਜਾਈਐ ਫੂਕ ॥੧੫੮॥: O Kabeer! The Satguru (ਸਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ-True Wisdom) can’t do anything if there is a lapse or fault in Sikhs (learners, ਸਿਖਿਆਰਥੀ). (The Satguru’s Knowledge, Giaan…) can’t affect or change the (arrogant or mentally) blind person (if he does not want to change); it is as useless as the bamboo (flute) of begins to play when blown in (but the blow passes through one end and goes out the other way, similarly the Gur-Giaan or Wisdom passes from one ear and escapes through the other ear without affecting an arrogant person who does not want to change. ||158|| (sggs 1372).
The SGGS freely offers this safe knowledge (ਤੱਤ ਗਿਆਨ…) of Oneness to those who are interested in taking it, and living it in daily life.
It’s this Knowledge by which one can understand his True Nature (Jot Saroop). It’s this Knowledge that takes people to the Way of Truth which can unite all mankind across the barriers of Jaat Paat, race, color, creed, religions, and even time!
- ਜਿਉ ਮੰਦਰ ਕਉ ਥਾਮੈ ਥੰਮਨੁ ॥ ਤਿਉ ਗੁਰ ਕਾ ਸਬਦੁ ਮਨਹਿ ਅਸਥੰਮਨੁ ॥: As a pillar supports a building, similarly, the Gur-Shabad is the mind’s support. (sggs 282).
Ironically, they divide people instead of uniting them. They all preach their respective followers how to eliminate the other side!
As a result, these institutionalized or organized religions only produce mentally blind, compliant followers who unquestioningly obey the diktats of their crafty clergy or Pujaaree.