Sant and Asant

The Gurbani tells us as to who the real “Sant” is in the Gurmat (Wisdom of the Gurbani, SGGS):

• ਹਮਰੋ ਭਰਤਾ ਬਡੋ ਬਿਬੇਕੀ ਆਪੇ ਸੰਤੁ ਕਹਾਵੈ ॥: My Husband (i.e., the Lord, Parmeshar) is the Great One of discerning intellect; He alone is called a Sant (sggs 476).
• ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਸਦਾ ਸੁਹਾਗਣੀ ਜਿਸੁ ਅਵਿਨਾਸੀ ਪੁਰਖੁ ਭਰਤਾਰੁ ॥੧॥: O Nanak! The soul-bride who has become the Gurmukh, (that soul-bride) is foreve with the Imperishable Lord as her Husband. ||1|| (sggs 786).

Hence, primarily, the term “Sant” indicates ONE “Bhartaa” (Mool, Parmaatam, Hari, Gobind, Prabh,Raam, Allah…) in the SGGS.

A divine being can also be outside (e.g., Gur-Sahibaan or Bhagat etc., but, at the level of the Aatmaa not at the level of the physical body or robes (Bhekh-ਭੇਖ), etc.
However, they call themselves Daas, Jan, etc., but NOT Sant. For they know that the Real Sant is the ONE “Bhartaa”.


Essentially, a part of the mind connected to Maya and disconnected from its Mool is Asant.

Thus, literally, Asant (ਅਸੰਤ) is an undivine person — a vicious person, ਦੁਰਾਚਾਰੀ, ਦੁਰਚਰਿਤਰ, evil, wicked, roguish, Manmukh, ungodly, religious con artist, devoid of Vivek-Budhi, greedy, Manmukh, Mayadhaaree, Saakat, Paapee (resistang or opposer of the Hukam, whose thoughts-speech-actions counter the Hukam, separated from its Mool, etc.), etc.

In other words, Asant (ਅਸੰਤ) is the opposite of the Sant (ਸੰਤ). The Gurbani further calles “Asant ” as “Asant Anaarree” (Anaaree-ਅਨਾੜੀ = blockhead, stupid, silly, novice, bungler, ਵਿਕਾਰਾਂ ਵਲੋਂ ਨਾ ਹਟਣ ਵਾਲਾ, ਮੂਰਖ…).

• ਅਸੰਤੁ ਅਨਾੜੀ ਕਦੇ ਨ ਬੂਝੈ ॥ ਕਥਨੀ ਕਰੇ ਤੈ ਮਾਇਆ ਨਾਲਿ ਲੂਝੈ ॥ ਅੰਧੁ ਅਗਿਆਨੀ ਕਦੇ ਨ ਸੀਝੈ ॥੨॥: The unsaintly blockhead never Understands (Spiritual Life, saintly or Gurmukh Lifestyle, ਆਤਮਕ ਜੀਵਨ ਦੀ ਸਮਝ…). He babbles on and on (ਗਿਆਨ ਦੀਆਂ ਗੱਲਾਂ…), but he is infatuated with Maya. (A person who is so) blind and ignorant (mentaly blind: ਗਿਆਨ-ਹੀਨ…) never reforms. ||2|| (sggs 160).

The power of observation is the first faculty to appear in the Awakening of the intuitive regions. This is why Divine Beings (the Gurmukhs, Bhagat, Daas, Jan…) do not talk nonsense; for their intuition works through discerning intellect (Viveka Budhi). The Gurbani’s instruction is to abstain from talking to Asant (spiritually fools…). On the other hand, the Gurbani encourages us to talk to the Saintly or Divine Beings.

• ਸੰਤੁ ਮਿਲੈ ਕਿਛੁ ਸੁਨੀਐ ਕਹੀਐ ॥ ਮਿਲੈ ਅਸੰਤੁ ਮਸਟਿ ਕਰਿ ਰਹੀਐ ॥੧॥: When you meet a Sant, talk to him and listen (Shabad-Vichaar…). Meeting with an Asant, just remain silent ||1|| (sggs 870).
• ਕਬੀਰ ਸੰਤੁ ਨ ਛਾਡੈ ਸੰਤਈ ਜਉ ਕੋਟਿਕ ਮਿਲਹਿ ਅਸੰਤ ॥ ਮਲਿਆਗਰੁ ਭੁਯੰਗਮ ਬੇਢਿਓ ਤ ਸੀਤਲਤਾ ਨ ਤਜੰਤ ॥੧੭੪॥: O Kabeer! A pious person does not forsake pious nature, even though he meets millions of impious persons. (Similar as) when sandal tree is surrounded by snakes, it does not give up its coolness (fragrance). ||174|| (sggs 1373).

In fact, the Gurbani urges to pray to the Lord NOT to give us Darshan of an Asant, for he is a “Paapee” (who resists or opposes the Hukam, whose thoughts-speech-actions counter the Hukam, con artist…)!

• ਜਣੀ ਲਖਾਵਹੁ ਅਸੰਤ ਪਾਪੀ ਸਣਿ ॥੩॥: (O Lord!) do not show (Darshan) me the Paapee Asant. ||3|| (sggs 486).

Our deluded or Mayaic mind has split and separated from its Mool (ਮੂਲ, Source, Base-ਅਧਾਰ…), and has thus become divided (i.e., two). This Mayaic, ego or Haumai ridden Jeev or mind (i.e., conditioned, modified, ਮਨਮੁਖਿ, ਸਾਕਤ…) essentially conducts itself as Asant, and the other Intact part (Mool, Saabat-ਸਾਬਤ, Whole, Pure, Unconditioned, Untainted, Unmodified, Vivek-Budhi, ਅੰਤਰ ਆਤਮਾ, ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ…) is the Sant.

Thus, from One (Saabat, Joti, or the Divine Light…), we have became two (divided, fragmented, two like a split grain or seed-ਦਲੀ ਹੋਈ ਦਾਲ ਵਾਂਗ ਦੋ ਫਾੜ…):

• ਬੀਉ ਬੀਜਿ ਪਤਿ ਲੈ ਗਏ ਅਬ ਕਿਉ ਉਗਵੈ ਦਾਲਿ ॥ ਜੇ ਇਕੁ ਹੋਇ ਤ ਉਗਵੈ ਰੁਤੀ ਹੂ ਰੁਤਿ ਹੋਇ ॥: Those who planted the seed (of Hari Naam-ਹਰੀ ਦਾ ਨਾਮ ਬੀਜ) have departed with honor; (but) for now the seed cannot sprout (because of duality, fragmentation-ਦਾਲ ਵਾਂਗ ਦੋ-ਫਾੜ ਹੋ ਰਹੇ, ਭਾਵ ਦੁਚਿੱਤਾ-ਪਨ, ਦੁਬਿਧਾ ਦੇ ਕਾਰਨ ਜੀਵਾਂ ਦਾ ਮਨ ਨਾਮ ਵਿਚ ਨਹੀਂ ਜੁੜਦਾ…). The seed srouts only if the seed is whole (undivided, Saabat-ਸਾਬਤ…), and if the season is proper (similarly, the Naam-seed sprouts within only if the mind and Consciousness – ਮੱਨ ਅਤੇ ਚਿੱਤ – are one: whole, complete, unfragmented, total, Saabat-ਸਾਬਤ…). (sggs 468).

The Gurbani tells us that this human life is the opportunity given to us to become One again – “ਸਾਬਤ ਸੂਰਤਿ” through understanding the Gurbani and living it, and link back with our Mool within. If we miss this opportunity, repeated suffering is certain.

• ਯਾ ਜੁਗ ਮਹਿ ਏਕਹਿ ਕਉ ਆਇਆ ॥: (Man) has come into this world to become One (ਇਕ ਹੋਣ ਵਾਸਤੇ ). (sggs 251).

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