Any religion (ਮਜ਼ਹਬ) in which there is a provision for Pakhand to wash away sins/vices or Bikaar and become pure only with bathing, who will be afraid to commit sins/vices in that religion and society? NO BODY — that means there must be sin/vices!
First off, there is no such provision in Sikhi of Baabaa Nanak!
In order to make us realize Truth (ਸਚ), all contributors of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS) have used terms that were already within the use and within the psyche of people of the time.
However, they have used these terms as examples (ਹਵਾਲਾ), but explicitly with new meanings and understanding to fit the new and unique spiritual paradigms of Sikhi or Gurmat (Wisdom of the SGGS); NOT to regurgitate what already existed before the Gurus!
‘Paap‘ (ਪਾਪ) and ‘Punn‘ (ਪੁੰਨ) are one of such terms.
‘Paap Punn’ – a Kahaavat-ਕਹਾਵਤ!
The Gurbani asserts that those who have become the Gurmukhs (Enlightened being) for them the ritualistic ‘Paap Punn’ (vices and virtues, ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ) is just a ‘Kahaavat‘ (proverb or say), which began to be spoken of after the rise of desire for heaven, the rise of hunger for Maya, and so on.
- ਪਾਪੁ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਤਹ ਭਈ ਕਹਾਵਤ ॥ ਕੋਊ ਨਰਕ ਕੋਊ ਸੁਰਗ ਬੰਛਾਵਤ ॥: The notion of sinful deeds (Paap) and pious acts (Punn) were concocted as a narrative; to make some to desire ‘Heaven’ and others fit or destined for ‘Hell’. (sggs 691).
Before going further, to fully digest Gurmat’s point of view, it’s essential to keep in mind the basic requirement of Sikhi — ‘BECOME GURMUKH‘ (Enlightened mindset). Having BECOME THE GURBANI, whatever a Gurmukh thinks or does with the Enlightened mind is beneficial not only to him/her but also to the entire humanity.
- ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਹਮਰੈ ਵਸਿ ਨਾਹਿ ॥ ਰਸਕਿ ਰਸਕਿ ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਣ ਗਾਹਿ ॥੪॥੪੦॥੫੧॥: Paap and Punn are not under our control. O Nanak! (Those who remember their Mool or Jot Saroop…) live remembering the Divine Virtues with great love. ॥4॥40॥51॥ (sggs 899).
- ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਸਭੁ ਵਾਪਾਰੁ ਭਲਾ ਜੇ ਸਹਜੇ ਕੀਜੈ ਰਾਮ ॥ ਅਨਦਿਨੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਵਖਾਣੀਐ ਲਾਹਾ ਹਰਿ ਰਸੁ ਪੀਜੈ ਰਾਮ ॥ : All dealings in life are good or beneficial if they are accomplished by becoming the Gurmukh (Enlightened being) naturally – Shahaj (Natural state of Being, state of Wisdom-ਗਿਆਨ ਅਵਸਥਾ). We should ever remember and live by Naam (Wisdom / Virtues) since that is really the spiritual benefit of being human. (sggs 568).
Sikhi or Gurmat of Baabaa Nanak categorically and unequivocally rejected both Hindu and Muslim ideas of hell and heaven. Gurmat also rejects the Pujaaree’s concocted concepts of ritualistic Paap Punn (sin/vices and virtues), Karma, reincarnation (or transmigration), caste, gender inequality, ritualistic deeds (Karamkaand) etc.
- ਕਥਾ ਕਹਾਣੀ ਬੇਦੀ ਆਣੀ ਪਾਪੁ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ ॥ ਦੇ ਦੇ ਲੈਣਾ ਲੈ ਲੈ ਦੇਣਾ ਨਰਕਿ ਸੁਰਗਿ ਅਵਤਾਰ ॥ ਉਤਮ ਮਧਿਮ ਜਾਤੀਂ ਜਿਨਸੀ ਭਰਮਿ ਭਵੈ ਸੰਸਾਰੁ ॥: The narrative given to the world by the Vedas is that there are sinful deeds (‘Paap‘) and pious ones (‘Punn‘) — to give (Daan) more than one receives, and to receive more that one gives is the basis for becoming a resident of ‘Hell’ and ‘Heaven’. (Through this teaching of the Vedas) the world is lost and steeped in superstitions of high and low social class. (sggs 1243).
- ਆਸਾ ਮਨਸਾ ਬੰਧਨੀ ਭਾਈ ਕਰਮ ਧਰਮ ਬੰਧਕਾਰੀ ॥ ਪਾਪਿ ਪੁੰਨਿ ਜਗੁ ਜਾਇਆ ਭਾਈ ਬਿਨਸੈ ਨਾਮੁ ਵਿਸਾਰੀ ॥ : (O brother pundit) false hopes and desires are entanglements as are ritualistic deeds and obligations (karam dharam). Though alive to the Paap Punn (ritualistic vices and virtues), people are dying spiritual death by forgetting divine Naam (divine Wisdom / Virtues). (sggs 635).
- ਬੇਦ ਬਾਦ ਸਭਿ ਆਖਿ ਵਖਾਣਹਿ ॥ ਨ ਅੰਤਰੁ ਭੀਜੈ ਨ ਸਬਦੁ ਪਛਾਣਹਿ ॥ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਪਾਪੁ ਸਭੁ ਬੇਦਿ ਦ੍ਰਿੜਾਇਆ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤੁ ਪੀਜੈ ਹੇ ॥੧੫॥: (The Brahman) explains all the controversies in the Vedas but he has no inner Enlightenment or Understanding of Truth. He keeps talking what is Paap Punn (ritualistic vices or virtues) according to Vedas whereas the Amrit can ONLY be drunk by becoming a Gurmukh (Enlightened). ||15|| (sggs 1050).
Further, SGGS rejects the Brahmin invented law of Karma and
reincarnation. Contrary to the law of Karma and reincarnation, SGGS teaches humans to rise above animal level to become Gurmukhs (Enlightened beings). Moreover, SGGS challenges the validity of the
law of Karma by asking who created the law of Karma and how did the first being inherit it?
- ਜਬ ਅਕਾਰੁ ਇਹੁ ਕਛੁ ਨ ਦ੍ਰਿਸਟੇਤਾ ॥ ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਤਬ ਕਹ ਤੇ ਹੋਤਾ ॥: When there was no visible world, then who was committing Paap and Punn? (sggs 290).
- ਜਬ ਕਛੁ ਨ ਸੀਓ ਤਬ ਕਿਆ ਕਰਤਾ ਕਵਨ ਕਰਮ ਕਰਿ ਆਇਆ ॥ ਅਪਨਾ ਖੇਲੁ ਆਪਿ ਕਰਿ ਦੇਖੈ ਠਾਕੁਰਿ ਰਚਨੁ ਰਚਾਇਆ ॥੧॥ : When there was no visible world (creation), then what deeds were done or who created Karma initially? The reality is that it is God (Hukam: Cosmic System-Rule-Law), who created the world. For God, creation is a game and It continues to play. ॥1॥ (sggs 748).
- ਕਰਮ ਬਧ ਤੁਮ ਜੀਉ ਕਹਤ ਹੌ ਕਰਮਹਿ ਕਿਨਿ ਜੀਉ ਦੀਨੁ ਰੇ ॥੨॥ : You (Brahman) that the law of Karma determines man’s fate, but who created the law of karma? ||2|| (sggs 870).
- ਮਾਇ ਨ ਹੋਤੀ ਬਾਪੁ ਨ ਹੋਤਾ ਕਰਮੁ ਨ ਹੋਤੀ ਕਾਇਆ ॥ ਹਮ ਨਹੀ ਹੋਤੇ ਤੁਮ ਨਹੀ ਹੋਤੇ ਕਵਨੁ ਕਹਾਂ ਤੇ ਆਇਆ ॥੧॥ … ਸਾਸਤੁ ਨ ਹੋਤਾ ਬੇਦੁ ਨ ਹੋਤਾ ਕਰਮੁ ਕਹਾਂ ਤੇ ਆਇਆ ॥੨॥ : When there was neither mother, nor father, nor
body, nor deed (Karma), or when neither I was there, nor you were there, then who knows what came from where? ||1|| … When there was no Veda and Shastra, there was no Karma? Then how did the Karma originate? ||2|| (sggs 973).
Furthermore, SGGS stresses the freedom of action and responsibility for the consequences. Furthermore, contrary to the law of Karma and reincarnation that determines one’s caste and status in society, the SGGS asserts it is one’s deeds that determine one’s worth and respect in society:
- ਸਾ ਜਾਤਿ ਸਾ ਪਤਿ ਹੈ ਜੇਹੇ ਕਰਮ ਕਮਾਇ ॥: (Jaat Paat of a person) is as he acts (sggs 1330).
- ਦਿਨੁ ਰੈਨਿ ਅਪਨਾ ਕੀਆ ਪਾਈ ॥ ਕਿਸੁ ਦੋਸੁ ਨ ਦੀਜੈ ਕਿਰਤੁ ਭਵਾਈ ॥੪॥: We earn what we do day and night. Don’t blame others; it is our own doings that lead us astray. ||4|| (sggs 745).
As a matter of fact, SGGS rejects the Pujaaree’s concocted concept of past or future life (reincarnation or transmigration) when it lays utmost stress on the present life (NOW) with a clear warning that this is the only opportunity to realize God:
- ਸੁਣਿ ਮਨ ਮਿਤ੍ਰ ਪਿਆਰਿਆ ਮਿਲੁ ਵੇਲਾ ਹੈ ਏਹ ॥ ਜਬ ਲਗੁ ਜੋਬਨਿ ਸਾਸੁ ਹੈ ਤਬ ਲਗੁ ਇਹੁ ਤਨੁ ਦੇਹ ॥ : O my mind, my dear friend listen, this is the only time for you to Realize the Creator (i.e. HERE AND NOW) Moreover, this opportunity will last only as long as the body is healthy and breathing. (sggs 20).
- ਭਈ ਪਰਾਪਤਿ ਮਾਨੁਖ ਦੇਹੁਰੀਆ ॥ ਗੋਬਿੰਦ ਮਿਲਣ ਕੀ ਇਹ ਤੇਰੀ ਬਰੀਆ ॥ : (O Human being!) You have been blessed with a human body. This is your only opportunity to unite with the Creator. (sggs 12).
- ਆਗਾਹਾ ਕੂ ਤ੍ਰਾਘਿ ਪਿਛਾ ਫੇਰਿ ਨ ਮੁਹਡੜਾ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਸਿਝਿ ਇਵੇਹਾ ਵਾਰ ਬਹੁੜਿ ਨ ਹੋਵੀ ਜਨਮੜਾ ॥੧॥: Look ahead; don’t look backwards. Nanak, this is your only chance to realize God, because you won’t be born again. ||1|| (sggs 1096).
- ਜੇ ਜਾਣਾ ਮਰਿ ਜਾਈਐ ਘੁਮਿ ਨ ਆਈਐ ॥ ਝੂਠੀ ਦੁਨੀਆ ਲਗਿ ਨ ਆਪੁ ਵਞਾਈਐ ॥੨॥ : When we know that after death we are not going to come back then why waste our lives by clinging to the world of falsehood. ||2|| (sggs 488).
- ਬੇਣੀ ਕਹੈ ਸੁਨਹੁ ਰੇ ਭਗਤਹੁ ਮਰਨ ਮੁਕਤਿ ਕਿਨਿ ਪਾਈ ॥੫॥: Says Baynee – Listen O devotees, nobody has ever attained liberation after death. ||5|| (sggs 93).
Having said that, the Gurmat Wisdom tells us that faulty concept of Paap Punn, Karma, reincarnation, hell and heaven, Jum etc. set in motion by the crafty Pujaaree (clergy) is grinding the whole world.
World in the grip of Paap Punn
In Sikhi we see today, Paap and Punn, as practiced by the self-serving Deraa-Vaad, Baabaa-Vaad, Saadh-Vaad, Pujaaree-Vaad (i.e., ਮੰਨਮੱਤ, ਅਨਮੱਤ, ਮੂੜਮੱਤ) and their followers is the concept derived from the Karamkaand (rituals) practices of Bipar-Vaad (ਮੰਨਮੱਤੀ, ਅੰਨਮੱਤੀ, ਮੂੜਮੱਤੀ ਸੋਚ).
- ਪਾਪ ਕਰਹਿ ਪੰਚਾਂ ਕੇ ਬਸਿ ਰੇ ॥ ਤੀਰਥਿ ਨਾਇ ਕਹਹਿ ਸਭਿ ਉਤਰੇ ॥ ਬਹੁਰਿ ਕਮਾਵਹਿ ਹੋਇ ਨਿਸੰਕ ॥ ਜਮ ਪੁਰਿ ਬਾਂਧਿ ਖਰੇ ਕਾਲੰਕ ॥੨॥ : Persons who commit vices/sins under the influence of the five Bikaar (i.e. lust, ager, greed, attachment, pride etc.), after ritual bathing at pilgrimage places, they think/claim that all their vices/sins/Bikaar have been washed away, and then without any hesitation start committing more vices/sins again and again! They thus remain bound to Bikaar (their ritual bathing at the so called pilgrimage locations cannot save them from Bikaar = Jum). (sggs 1348).
- ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਵਰਤੈ ਸੰਸਾਰਾ ॥ ਹਰਖੁ ਸੋਗੁ ਸਭੁ ਦੁਖੁ ਹੈ ਭਾਰਾ ॥ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਹੋਵੈ ਸੋ ਸੁਖੁ ਪਾਏ ਜਿਨਿ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਪਛਾਤਾ ਹੇ ॥੬॥: (Under the influence of Maya) the world is engrossed in Paap and Punn. (In the attachment of Maya itself) there is happiness and sorrow everywhere; tremendous sorrow (pervades the world resulting from the love or hunger of Maya). One who becomes Gurmukh, and as a Gurmukh realizes Naam finds happiness. ||6|| (sggs 1052).
- ਕਰਮ ਧਰਮ ਸਭਿ ਬੰਧਨਾ ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਸਨਬੰਧੁ ॥: The religious rituals are all entanglements; Paap and Punn are (just to keep people) attached with them. (sggs 551).
In the Brahminical rituals (Karamkaand), murder of a Brahmin is indicated to be the biggest Paap. Also, Daan (charity, donation…) of the highest material value to a Brahmin is said to be the biggest Punn. In Biparvaad, Paap is also considered killing of other Jeev (living beings).
The Gurbani rejects these concocted concepts of the self-serving Pujaaree (clergy). Paap is committed at the level of the mind (thought: Soch-ਸੋਚ). To the contrary, crime is committed at the level of the physical body-frame. Similarly Sootak and Paatak is also at the level of the body. In a nutshell, Paap is corrupt or evil thinking (Soch-ਸੋਚ). When this corrupt or evil thinking (Soch-ਸੋਚ) is put into practice, it becomes ‘Apraadh‘ (crime).
- ਅਨ ਕਾਏ ਰਾਤੜਿਆ ਵਾਟ ਦੁਹੇਲੀ ਰਾਮ ॥ ਪਾਪ ਕਮਾਵਦਿਆ ਤੇਰਾ ਕੋਇ ਨ ਬੇਲੀ ਰਾਮ ॥ : (O mortal!) Imbued in the love of meaningless worldly trivial things (and their corrupting influences), your journey of life would be very torturous. O the sinner, no one is your companion for ever. (sggs 546).
- ਹੰਸੁ ਹੇਤੁ ਲੋਭੁ ਕੋਪੁ ਚਾਰੇ ਨਦੀਆ ਅਗਿ ॥ ਪਵਹਿ ਦਝਹਿ ਨਾਨਕਾ ਤਰੀਐ ਕਰਮੀ ਲਗਿ ॥੨॥ : Cruelty, material attachment, greed and anger are like four rivers of fire (flowing in the mind of mortals). Those who fall into these are burnt. Nanak, with the grace (of the Guru’s Giaan-Wisdom) we can swim across these rivers (i.e. corrupting influences of worldly temptations). (sggs 147).
- ਜੇਤੇ ਦਾਣੇ ਅੰਨ ਕੇ ਜੀਆ ਬਾਝੁ ਨ ਕੋਇ ॥: As many are the grains of food, none is without life. (sggs 472).
- ਮੇਰੀ ਸੰਗਤਿ ਪੋਚ ਸੋਚ ਦਿਨੁ ਰਾਤੀ ॥ ਮੇਰਾ ਕਰਮੁ ਕੁਟਿਲਤਾ ਜਨਮੁ ਕੁਭਾਂਤੀ ॥੧॥ : (O Creator) day and night my company is with evil-minded persons, (as a result of evil company) my thinking is also evil. (Since my thinking is evil) my actions are deceitful (cunning, crooked, untruthful etc.); and thus my human birth has become of the worst or a low kind. ||1|| (sggs 345).
- ਮਾਧੋ ਹਮ ਐਸੇ ਤੂ ਐਸਾ ॥ ਹਮ ਪਾਪੀ ਤੁਮ ਪਾਪ ਖੰਡਨ ਨੀਕੋ ਠਾਕੁਰ ਦੇਸਾ ॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ : O God, we are such (i.e. loaded with the filth of vices) and You are such (i.e. destroyer of vices). We are sinners and You (i.e. divine Wisdom / Virtues) are destroyer of sins, realization of Your presence within is Beautiful. ||Pause|| (sggs 613).
As a result the ignorant, greedy and fearful people gave stuff in Daan to self-serving Brahmins or Pujaaree (clergy) such as land, money, their wives and daughters (‘Devadasi’ – ਦੇਵਦਾਸੀ – system), horses, elephants, cows etc. (ਅਸੁ ਦਾਨ ਗਜ ਦਾਨ ਸਿਹਜਾ ਨਾਰੀ ਭੂਮਿ ਦਾਨ ਐਸੋ ਦਾਨੁ ਨਿਤ ਨਿਤਹਿ ਕੀਜੈ ॥ sggs 973).
First the Self-serving Pujaaree invented a counterfeit God. Then, scaring people of the ‘Paap Punn‘ cycle, he made them worship his counterfeit God, fake spirituality, Pakhand, Kapat (ਪਖੰਡ, ਕਪਟ), worthless concocted rituals, sand so on!
This concept of Punn and Paap as defined by the Brahmin (Pandit, Pujaaree) is rejected in Sikhi or Gurmat of Wisdom of SGGS.
Owing to fear, greed, and lack of understanding of the Gurmat, fault lies with we the people. Because we don’t read the SGGS ourselves, let alone understanding it. It is as if we don’t want to wake up from the slumber of Maya.
The result is that our lives are ridden with superstitions, doubt, Pakhand, religious rituals (Karamkaand), religious paraphernalia, religious robes etc. Instead of the Gurmat Wisdom, we have a plethora of ideas from outside of Gurmat (i.e. ਮੰਨਮੱਤੀ, ਅੰਨਮੱਤੀ, ਮੂੜਮੱਤੀ ਸੋਚ ).
- ਪੰਡਿਤੁ ਪੜਿ ਨ ਪਹੁਚਈ ਬਹੁ ਆਲ ਜੰਜਾਲਾ ॥ ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਦੁਇ ਸੰਗਮੇ ਖੁਧਿਆ ਜਮਕਾਲਾ ॥: Involved in many domestic or Mayaic entanglements; even after reading (Vedas, Puraan, etc.), the Pandit cannot reach the stage (of abidance in his Mool, Jot, Rabb, etc.). (According to the Pandit’s theology) even while considering what is Paap and Punn, he remains in the snare of duality, he is tormented by the hunger for Maya and Jamm (i.e. Bikaar, fear of death etc.). (sggs 1012).
- ਬੇਦੁ ਪੁਕਾਰੇ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਪਾਪੁ ਸੁਰਗ ਨਰਕ ਕਾ ਬੀਉ ॥ ਜੋ ਬੀਜੈ ਸੋ ਉਗਵੈ ਖਾਂਦਾ ਜਾਣੈ ਜੀਉ ॥ … ਬੇਦੁ ਵਪਾਰੀ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਰਾਸਿ ਕਰਮੀ ਪਲੈ ਹੋਇ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਰਾਸੀ ਬਾਹਰਾ ਲਦਿ ਨ ਚਲਿਆ ਕੋਇ ॥੨॥: (O Pandit!) The Vedas pronounce that the act of piousness (‘Punn’) and sin (‘Paap’) are the determinants of ‘Heaven and hell’ in the Afterlife — what is planted in this life will bear fruits in ‘Heaven’ or ‘Hell‘. … (Thus, O Pandit, by mentioning the fruits of Paap and Punn) the Veda speaks of business (ਧੰਧਾ); (But the real capital for man) is the knowledge (of divine Virtues) and this knowledge is obtained (from the Guru-) grace (i.e., grace of the Gur-Giaan or Wisdom). O Nanak! Without this capital (of knowledge, Naam, Truth…) no human being (from the world) ever departs laden with the profit. (sggs 1243-1244).
What’s ‘Paap‘ for one person or in one religion or at one place may not be a ‘Paap‘ for somebody else or somewhere else.
Similarly, what’s ‘Punn‘ for one person or one religion or at one place, may not be a ‘Punn‘ for somebody else or somewhere else.
In other words, what’s good for one may be bad for the other. For example, consuming alcohol, cannabis, meat, smoking, staying naked etc., may be considered good by one but bad by somebody else.
For example, the Pujaaree ritualistically (Karamkaand) slaughter goat (after goat is bathed!) at Hajoor Sahib Gurdwara in the name of the Guru and God while reciting some verses! The Pujaaree at Hajoor Sahib Gurdwara may not considered it Paap, BUT other Gurdwaras may have different ideas!
Similarly, what’s considered Paap or Punn in one Hindu temple may not be considered Paap or Punn in other temples! for example, in some temples liquor is offered to deity, in some temples meat is severed as Prasad, in a temple in south India naked women worship, some village temples (particularly in south India) practice Devadasi system that amounts to abuse and slavery of young girls, etc. The truth is other temples may considered all of this ‘Paap‘!
Also, what’s considered Paap or Punn in one religion (ਮਜ਼ਹਬ) may not be considered Paap or Punn in other religions!
- ਪਰਮੇਸਰ ਤੇ ਭੁਲਿਆਂ ਵਿਆਪਨਿ ਸਭੇ ਰੋਗ ॥: Forgetting Parmeshar, (one) gets afflicted with all the sorrows (of the world). (sggs 135).
‘Punn and Paap are both the same’
The Gurbani further reveals to us that it is the negative impact of the false ego-sense (Haumai), which gives rise to the concepts or ideas such as Paap and Punn:
- ਹਉ ਵਿਚਿ ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਵੀਚਾਰੁ ॥: In Haumai one reflects on good or bad deeds (Paap Punn). (sggs 466).
- ਕਾਇਆ ਅੰਦਰਿ ਪਾਪੁ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਦੁਇ ਭਾਈ ॥: In the body (of a person living under the negative influence of egotism or Haumai), both brothers ‘Paap’ and ‘Punn’ live (inner mental-Soch or thinking, and make life’s decisions accordingly). (sggs 126).
Since both ‘Paap’ and ‘Punn’ show false ego-sense (Haumai), according to the Gurmat Wisdom of the SGGS, they both are the same — on account of egotism, both keep the mind occupied in lust or Vaasanaa!
- ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਦੁਇ ਏਕ ਸਮਾਨ ॥ ਨਿਜ ਘਰਿ ਪਾਰਸੁ ਤਜਹੁ ਗੁਨ ਆਨ ॥੩॥: ‘Paap’ and ‘Punn’ are both the same (i.e., both show egotism or Haumai, both keep the mind occupied in vices – both do not provide stability of the mind). O mind, the Creator dwells within you, realize the Creator within and forget about acquiring all meritorious deeds leading to rituals. ||3|| (sggs 325).
- ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਕੀ ਸਾਰ ਨ ਜਾਣੀ ॥ ਦੂਜੈ ਲਾਗੀ ਭਰਮਿ ਭੁਲਾਣੀ ॥ ਅਗਿਆਨੀ ਅੰਧਾ ਮਗੁ ਨ ਜਾਣੈ ਫਿਰਿ ਫਿਰਿ ਆਵਣ ਜਾਵਣਿਆ ॥੫॥: A person who does not understand the essence (reality-ਅਸਲੀਅਤ…) of ‘Paap’ and ‘Punn’, is attached with duality and is lost in illusion. That ignorant and (mentally) blind man knows not the right Way of living or life. (His mind) remains in the cycle of coming and going (his mind remains perplexed, wavering, wandering, not reaching any conclusion thus keep suffering in the ignorance of the Gurmat…). (sggs 110).
However, the Gurbani teaches us to transcend duality.
- ਦੁਕ੍ਰਿਤ ਸੁਕ੍ਰਿਤ ਮੰਧੇ ਸੰਸਾਰੁ ਸਗਲਾਣਾ ॥ ਦੁਹਹੂੰ ਤੇ ਰਹਤ ਭਗਤੁ ਹੈ ਕੋਈ ਵਿਰਲਾ ਜਾਣਾ ॥੧॥: The whole world is engrossed in (duality -) bad actions and good actions (as determined by the Pujaaree). The Bhagat (Daas, Gurmukh, Jan…) stays away from these two ideas, but such a person is rarely found. ||1|| (sggs 51).
Similarly, there is counting in Paath and Poojaa (I have done or read so many Nitnem; so many Akhand Paath etc.); there is counting in telling beads (ਮਾਲਾ ਫੇਰਨੀ); there is counting in charity or Daan (I have built so many Gurdwaras or temples, etc.), and so on.
Where Maya’s slumber ends, counting ends!
To the contrary, Punn is acting in accordance with the Hukam or Gurmat Wisdom. In other words, it is living with a Gurmukh Mindset (guided by the divine Wisdom / Virtues).
In nutshell, acting against the Hukam is ‘Apraadh’ or crime, and acting in accordance with the Hukam is Punn.
- ਹੁਕਮੁ ਨ ਜਾਣਹਿ ਬਪੁੜੇ ਭੂਲੇ ਫਿਰਹਿ ਗਵਾਰ ॥: The wretched fools do not know Hukam; they wander around making mistakes. (sggs 66).
- ਮਨ ਕਾ ਕਹਿਆ ਮਨਸਾ ਕਰੈ ॥ ਇਹੁ ਮਨੁ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਪਾਪੁ ਉਚਰੈ ॥: Man carries out the dictates of his mind. This mind feeds on Punn and Paap (sggs 832).
Our Mool is unaffected by Paap and Punn
The Gurmat Wisdom of the SGGS confirms that our Mool (Source, Origin, Jot Saroop) is unaffected by Paap or Punn.
- ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਕਾ ਇਸੁ ਲੇਪੁ ਨ ਲਾਗੈ ॥: (Since Jeeva is Jot Saroop) Paap and Punn have no effect on it (sggs 868).
The implication is if our Mool is unaffected by Paap or Punn, then the mind abiding in its Mool is also unaffected by Paap or Punn.
In Other words, if Jot Saroop is unaffected by Paap or Punn, then the mind firmly linked to its Jot Saroop is also unaffected by Paap or Punn.
Although we all were born as ‘Saabat Soorat‘ (Intact or Undivided Consciousness, Jot Saroop, Original Nature…), however, with rise of psychological conditionings, etc., we end up being a limited body-mind-intellect. Then, from this deluded personality arose the perceiver of objects, the feeler of emotions, and the thinker of thoughts. This is duality or separateness from the ‘Saabat Soorat‘.
- ਨਹੀ ਲੇਪੁ ਤਿਸੁ ਪੁੰਨਿ ਨ ਪਾਪਿ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਕਾ ਪ੍ਰਭੁ ਆਪੇ ਆਪਿ ॥੪॥੨੫॥੩੬॥: (Parabhu) is influenced by NO Punn and NO Paap (ever). Nanak’s Prabhu is Himself all in all. (sggs 894).
- ਇਉ ਕਹੈ ਨਾਨਕੁ ਮਨ ਤੂੰ ਜੋਤਿ ਸਰੂਪੁ ਹੈ ਅਪਣਾ ਮੂਲੁ ਪਛਾਣੁ ॥੫॥ : This is what Nanak says: O my mind, you are the ‘Jot Saroop’ or embodiment of Light (God)! Recognize your Mool (ORIGIN, Source…) ||5|| (sggs 441).
Go beyond the ‘Kahaavat’ of Paap Punn
The Gurbani asks the mind to retrace its steps back to its Original Nature it was born with — ‘Saabat Soorat’ or Jot Saroop, which is unaffected by the duality or ‘Paap’ and ‘Punn’.
As indicated before, only the Gurmukh (Bhagats, Daas, Jan…) are above both Paap and Punn. Because, transcending their three-qualitied Mayaic consciousness, they become established in the FOURTH STATE (Enlightened).
- ਅੰਤਰਿ ਸੁੰਨੰ ਬਾਹਰਿ ਸੁੰਨੰ ਤ੍ਰਿਭਵਣ ਸੁੰਨ ਮਸੁੰਨੰ ॥ ਚਉਥੇ ਸੁੰਨੈ ਜੋ ਨਰੁ ਜਾਣੈ ਤਾ ਕਉ ਪਾਪੁ ਨ ਪੁੰਨੰ ॥: Th Creator is Within and without all of His Creation for the entirety of its Existence. The Highest Level of Realization (Fourth Sate, beyond three qualities of Maya) is where one is above sinful and virtuous deeds (i.e. Paap Punn). (sggs 943).
One who has become the Gurmukh, ‘Sookh’ and ‘Dookh’, etc., are both the same for him.
As a result, ‘Paap’ and ‘Punn‘ are also both the same for a Gurmukh.
- ਸੂਖ ਦੂਖ ਜਨ ਸਮ ਦ੍ਰਿਸਟੇਤਾ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਪਾਪ ਪੁੰਨ ਨਹੀ ਲੇਪਾ ॥੬॥: (Jan – Daas, Bhagat, Gurmukh – efface malice from his mind, such beings) consider happiness and sorrow both the same. O Nanak! (That is why) Paap and Punn do not affect them. (sggs 266).
In short, Pujaaree-Vaad have filled our minds with ‘Paap’ and ‘Punn’. However, the Gurmat Wisdom of the SGGS tells us otherwise.
In a nutshell, the Gurbani asks us to remove our inner garbage — the negative pulls of human nature (Bikaar). If not checked and controlled, it will bring the Jeeva (individual beings) down to the animal nature.
- ਪਾਂਚਉ ਇੰਦ੍ਰੀ ਨਿਗ੍ਰਹ ਕਰਈ ॥ ਪਾਪੁ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਦੋਊ ਨਿਰਵਰਈ ॥੨੭॥: (A person who has experienced his Jot Saroop, within) controls his five senses, (he) removes the idea of Paap and Punn (i.e., he controls the five senses acquiring knowledge in such a way that he does not have to think about his deeds anymore — every act of his is free from Bikaar: lust, anger, greed, etc.). (sggs 341).
- ਪੁੰਨ ਦਾਨ ਜਪ ਤਪ ਜੇਤੇ ਸਭ ਊਪਰਿ ਨਾਮੁ ॥: (Prescribed deeds such as) Punn, charity, Japa, and Tapa – Naam is the best of all. (sggs 401).
- ਕਿਛੁ ਪੁੰਨ ਦਾਨ ਅਨੇਕ ਕਰਣੀ ਨਾਮ ਤੁਲਿ ਨ ਸਮਸਰੇ ॥: People give donations to charity; perform a variety of rituals (Karamkaand); all of this is in vain because none of this is equal to Naam. (sggs 566).
The reason is whatever a ‘Gurmukh‘ does results in ‘Sarbatt Daa Bhalaa – ਸਰਬੱਤ ਦਾ ਭਲਾ’ (meaning ‘well-being of all of humanity’, ‘peace for all of humanity’, ‘prosperity for everyone’, ‘welfare of all’, ‘may everyone be blessed’, ‘may good come to all’…).
- ਬੁਰਾ ਨਹੀ ਸਭੁ ਭਲਾ ਹੀ ਹੈ ਰੇ ਹਾਰ ਨਹੀ ਸਭ ਜੇਤੈ ॥੧॥: (To a person established in Mool-abidance or in his Jot Saroop) no human being seems bad to him, everyone looks good to him, (against the Bikaar or perversions or defects of the world) he never loses, always wins (sggs 1302).
Since the Gurmukhs have transcended the negative impact of false ego-sense (Haumai), they don’t entertain the concocted beliefs of Bipar-Vaad or Deraa-Vaad! For them instilling Divine Virtues and Wisdom and live a divine Life is the gist or essence of Sikhi of Baabaa Nanak.
- ਖੇਤੀ ਵਣਜੁ ਨਾਵੈ ਕੀ ਓਟ ॥ ਪਾਪੁ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਬੀਜ ਕੀ ਪੋਟ॥: Life should be lived by taking, acquiring, possessing the divine Virtues and Wisdom in the form of Naam. Doing deeds according to the ‘Paap Punn‘ thinking becomes a bundle of seeds (meaning our Sanskars, thoughts and thinking are made according to that). (sggs 152).
- ਪੁੰਨੀ ਪਾਪੀ ਆਖਣੁ ਨਾਹਿ ॥: Mere talking about Paap Punn does not become either Paapee or Punnee (i.e., it does not remove the doubt of the mind. For that one has to live a practical life as the Gurmukh). (sggs 4).
In a nutshell, the greatest ‘Punn‘ for a person is to straiten his/her mind like a ‘Dandaa‘ (a straight stick) — become free of Bikaar (i.e. lust, ager, greed, attachment, pride, and their numerous variations), respect the Hukam (System-Rule-Law of Nature).
- ਕਾਮਿ ਕਰੋਧਿ ਨਗਰੁ ਬਹੁ ਭਰਿਆ ਮਿਲਿ ਸਾਧੂ ਖੰਡਲ ਖੰਡਾ ਹੇ ॥ ਪੂਰਬਿ ਲਿਖਤ ਲਿਖੇ ਗੁਰੁ ਪਾਇਆ ਮਨਿ ਹਰਿ ਲਿਵ ਮੰਡਲ ਮੰਡਾ ਹੇ ॥੧॥ ਕਰਿ ਸਾਧੂ ਅੰਜੁਲੀ ਪੁਨੁ ਵਡਾ ਹੇ ॥ ਕਰਿ ਡੰਡਉਤ ਪੁਨੁ ਵਡਾ ਹੇ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ : Meeting my Guru (i.e. Shabad, Upadesh or Message) shattered the hold of lust (worldly desires) and anger (i.e. all Bikaar) over me. My efforts towards connecting with my Guru destined my mind into realm of Godly Union. ||1|| (Hence, O mortal) show respect to the Guru (Shabad), it is an act of great ‘Punn‘. Straighten out (the mind) like a stick — become free of vices or Bikaar — this is (also) an act of great ‘Punn‘. ||1||Pause|| (sggs 13).