True Guru in Sikhi!

The foundations of organized man-made religions (ਮਜ਼ਹਬ) is based on the principle of human or embodied Guru-disciple (ਮਨੁੱਖੀ ਗੁਰੂ-ਚੇਲੇ ਦਾ ਸਿਧਾਂਤ). However, Nanak’s Unique and Revolutionary
spirituality FREES man from this principle of human Guru and disciple!

  • ਸਦਾ ਸਦਾ ਸੋ ਸੇਵੀਐ ਜੋ ਸਭ ਮਹਿ ਰਹੈ ਸਮਾਇ ॥ ਅਵਰੁ ਦੂਜਾ ਕਿਉ ਸੇਵੀਐ ਜੰਮੈ ਤੈ ਮਰਿ ਜਾਇ ॥ : Serve That (ONE) forever who is contained in all. Why serve another who is born, and then dies? (sggs 509).
  • ਹਰਿ ਜੀਉ ਤੇਰੀ ਦਾਤੀ ਰਾਜਾ ॥ ਮਾਣਸੁ ਬਪੁੜਾ ਕਿਆ ਸਾਲਾਹੀ ਕਿਆ ਤਿਸ ਕਾ ਮੁਹਤਾਜਾ ॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ : O reverend Creator, you are the true Emperor blessing us with gift. Why fawn over wretched mortals? Why submit to them? ||Pause|| (sggs 668).

With that said, the GURU in Sikhi of Nanak is the SHABAD (Giyan-Wisdom-Enlightenment). And, a Sikh is the lifelong learner (ਸਿਖਿਆਰਥੀ) of this GURU SHABAD.

  • ਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਊਪਜੈ ਮਹਾ ਤਤੁ ਬੀਚਾਰਾ ॥ ਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਘਰੁ ਦਰੁ ਪਾਇਆ ਭਗਤੀ ਭਰੇ ਭੰਡਾਰਾ ॥੨॥ : It is only from the Guru (Shabad – Sri Guru Granth Sahib, SGGS) that true Wisdom can be obtained to reflect on the Essence of Reality. Through this Guru (Shabad – SGGS) I have realized God’s presence within, by virtue of which my mind is filled with Bhagti. ||2|| (sggs 424).
  • ਗੁਰ ਬਿਨੁ ਅਵਰੁ ਨਾਹੀ ਮੈ ਥਾਉ ॥ ਅਨਦਿਨੁ ਜਪਉ ਗੁਰੂ ਗੁਰ ਨਾਉ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ : Besides the Divine Wisdom, I have no other refuge. I am forever remembering the Guru’s Divine Wisdom (to liberate myself from Bikaar/vices, Bhav…). ||1||Pause|| (sggs 864).

There are 35 composers of the Bani who are included in the Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS), including Six Guru Sahibaan. Although there are 35 composers of the Bani, still the entire Gurbani (from page 1 of the SGGS to the end) is based on a single divine principle and that principle is the explanation of the ONE (Iko or Eko – ‘ੴ’ ਦੀ ਵਿਆਖਿਆ).

Note that even the Bani of the six Guru Sahibaan is identified by the word ‘Mahalaa‘, NOT by the word ‘Guru’, ‘Satguru’, or ‘sant‘!

Shabad is the Guru in Sikhi

Nanak never had any human or embodied Guru!

During ‘Sidh Gosti’ (debates with Siddhs), Sidhas posed many questions to Nanak. Three of those questions were (1) Who is your Guru? (2) How do you become a disciple? (3) Where does the Shabad reside? Nanak answers them with the following most underscored verse from ‘Sidh Gosti’ composition:

  • ਸਬਦੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਸੁਰਤਿ ਧੁਨਿ ਚੇਲਾ ॥ : The SHABAD is my GURU, and my consciousness (Surat) is the disciple (of this SHABAD GURU). (sggs 943).

In the word Guru, ‘Gu’ signifies darkness and ‘Ru‘ denotes Knowledge or Light. Thus, the word Guru denotes that Divine Light (Giyan-Wisdom, Enlightenment, Bibek) which removes the darkness of ignorance.

  • ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਸਾਚਾ ਥਾਨੁ ਤੀਰਥੁ ਦਸ ਪੁਰਬ ਸਦਾ ਦਸਾਹਰਾ ॥ : The Guru is Giyan-Wisdom and this Guru is my sole pilgrimage, for me this is like the ritual of ten most auspicious days. (sggs 687).
  • ਗਿਆਨ ਪ੍ਰਵੇਸੁ ਗੁਰਹਿ ਧਨੁ ਦੀਆ ਧਿਆਨੁ ਮਾਨੁ ਮਨ ਏਕ ਮਏ ॥ : A person whom the Guru blessed with the Spiritual Wealth of Giyan (i.e. a person who sincerely TAKE the divine Wisdom or Bibek from the Guru), his mind remained attuned to God and he became one with God. (sggs 487).
  • ਗੁਰ ਪਰਸਾਦਿ ਐਸੀ ਬੁਧਿ ਸਮਾਨੀ ॥ ਚੂਕਿ ਗਈ ਫਿਰਿ ਆਵਨ ਜਾਨੀ ॥੩॥ : By the ‘Gur Prasaad (Blessing or Grace of the Shabad Guru, Gur-Giyan, Gur-Wisdom, Bibek, or Enlightenment of the Shabad.), when someone’s mind is Enlightened with such a Wisdom, then his (Afterlife Bharam-doubt about) cycle of birth and death ends forever. ||3|| (sggs 337).
  • ਗੁਰਿ ਦਿਖਲਾਈ ਮੋਰੀ ॥ ਜਿਤੁ ਮਿਰਗ ਪੜਤ ਹੈ ਚੋਰੀ ॥ ਮੂੰਦਿ ਲੀਏ ਦਰਵਾਜੇ ॥ ਬਾਜੀਅਲੇ ਅਨਹਦ ਬਾਜੇ ॥੧॥ : The Guru has shown me that weakness of mine; because of which the animals like vices/ Bikaar (i.e. lust, anger, greed etc.) were secretly taking over my spiritual life. (With the help of the Guru’s Guidance) now I have full control over my senses as if have closed the doors of the senses through which bad thoughts were entering my mind (i.e. now my mind decides what comes in and what goes out). Now I hear the Voice of my Conscious clear and Loud (i.e. BECOMING the GURBANI, now I have REALIZED the Creator Within). (sggs 656).

The term ‘Satguru’ consists of two words, ‘Sat’ and ‘Guru’. As Truth (ਸੱਚ-Sach) is eternal, the ‘Sat‘ represents the eternal nature of the Guru (Giyan-Wisdom…); the one without beginning, middle, or end — which holds true in past, present and future. It simply means that the Guru or the Satguru does not take birth; thereby, never dies.

Put plainly, according to the Gurmat (Eternal Giyan-Wisdom, Upadesh, Sikhia, or Way of the SGGS…), the true or real Guru in Sikhi is the formless Giyan-Wisdom (ਗਿਆਨ) — the formless Bibek (ਬਿਬੇਕ), Discriminating intellect (ਬਿਬੇਕ ਬੁੱਧ) etc.

  • ਕਹੁ ਕਬੀਰ ਮੈ ਸੋ ਗੁਰੁ ਪਾਇਆ ਜਾ ਕਾ ਨਾਉ ਬਿਬੇਕੋੁ ॥੪॥੫॥ : Says Kabeer, I have found that Guru, whose Name is ‘Bibek(u)’ (Wisdom, Discerning Intelligence…). ||4||5|| (sggs 793).
  • ਗੁਰੁ ਮੇਰਾ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਗੁਰੁ ਰਿਦੈ ਧਿਆਨੁ ॥ : The Guru (Shabad of the SGGS) is the source of my GiyanWisdom and the object of my mind’s focus. (sggs 864).
  • ਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਨਾਮ ਰਤਨੁ ਪਾਇਆ ॥ : The Jewel of Giyan (Wisdom) is obtained from the Guru (sggs 1044).
  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਹੈ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਹੈ ਪੂਜਾ ॥ : Satiguru is ‘GIYAN’ (i.e. WISDOM, ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ); and Satiguru (i.e. GIYAN or WISDOM) is the ‘Poojaa‘. (sggs 1069).
  • ਗੁਰ ਦੀਪਕੁ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਸਦਾ ਮਨਿ ਬਲੀਆ ਜੀਉ ॥ : (Let) the lamp of the Gur-Wisdom burn steadily in the mind. (sggs 173).

The SGGS further asserts that this Giyan-Guru, or Bibek-Guru, or Satguru resides in the mind of the Sikhs:

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਸਾਚਾ ਮਨਿ ਵਸੈ ਸਾਜਨੁ ਉਤ ਹੀ ਠਾਇ ॥: When the Satiguru (Sach Daa Giyan, Knowledge of Truth, etc.) abides within the mind, then the ‘Sahib’ or Mool is (also) seen at the same place (that is, within…) (sggs 1087).
  • ਬਿਬੇਕ ਬੁਧਿ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਪਾਈ ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਕੇਰਾ ॥: Bibek Budh is obtained from the Satigur; the Guru reveals the Divine Wisdom. (sggs 711).
  • ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਮਹਿਮਾ ਕਿਆ ਕਹਾ ਗੁਰੁ ਬਿਬੇਕ ਸਤ ਸਰੁ ॥: How can I Glorify the Gur? The Gur is the ‘Srovar’ of Truth and Bibek (sggs 397).
  • ਬਿਬੇਕੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਗੁਰੂ ਸਮਦਰਸੀ ਤਿਸੁ ਮਿਲੀਐ ਸੰਕ ਉਤਾਰੇ ॥: The Bibek Guru looks upon all alike. Meeting with that (Bibek-Gueu), doubts are dispelled (sggs 981).

The food of the gross body is different than the food of the mind. The Satguru nourishes and protects all of us by providing the spiritual food for our mind from Within — Wisdom / Virtues.

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਮੇਰਾ ਸਭਸ ਕਾ ਦਾਤਾ ॥: My True Guru is the benefactor of all (i.e. Giver of Wisdom / Virtues to all). (Sggs 1142).
  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਮੇਰਾ ਸਰਬ ਪ੍ਰਤਿਪਾਲੈ ॥ : My true Guru nourishes all (with the spiritual food of Wisdom / Virtues). (sggs 1142).
  • ਜਿਨਿ ਜੀਉ ਦੀਆ ਸੁ ਰਿਜਕੁ ਅੰਬਰਾਵੈ ॥ ਸਭ ਘਟ ਭੀਤਰਿ ਹਾਟੁ ਚਲਾਵੈ ॥ : (Creator) who has given life, also provides for its sustenance (of spiritual Guidance how to lead life – spiritual food of Wisdom / Virtues). For that He runs a shop Within all (a shop full of Wisdom / Virtues Within all). (sggs 794).
  • ਗੁਰੂ ਗੁਰੂ ਗੁਰੁ ਕਰਿ ਮਨ ਮੋਰ ॥ ਗੁਰੂ ਬਿਨਾ ਮੈ ਨਾਹੀ ਹੋਰ ॥ ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਟੇਕ ਰਹਹੁ ਦਿਨੁ ਰਾਤਿ ॥ ਜਾ ਕੀ ਕੋਇ ਨ ਮੇਟੈ ਦਾਤਿ ॥੧॥ ਗੁਰੁ ਪਰਮੇਸਰੁ ਏਕੋ ਜਾਣੁ ॥ ਜੋ ਤਿਸੁ ਭਾਵੈ ਸੋ ਪਰਵਾਣੁ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ : O my mind, forever remember the Guru (Shabad-Upadesh or Wisdom of the SGGS). Without the Guru, I have none other. The Guru’s Divine Wisdom supports me day and night. The Guru’s bounties are never effaced. ||1|| (O my mind) deem both the Guru and the Creator to be one and the same. Whatever pleases the Creator, only that is acceptable. ||1||Pause|| (sggs 864).
  • ਨਾਮੇ ਹੀ ਹਮ ਨਿਰਭਉ ਭਏ ॥ ਨਾਮੇ ਆਵਨ ਜਾਵਨ ਰਹੇ ॥ ਗੁਰਿ ਪੂਰੈ ਮੇਲੇ ਗੁਣਤਾਸ ॥ ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਸੁਖਿ ਸਹਜਿ ਨਿਵਾਸੁ ॥੪॥੨॥੪॥ : Naam (Wisdom/Virtues…) makes me fearless. Naam liberates me from the fears of life and death. The perfect Guru has blessed me with the Divine Wisdom of Virtues. Says Nanak, this is the path to residing forever in Sahaj (Natural State of Being, Wisdom…). ||4||2||4|| (sggs 863).

The SGGS asserts that the Satgur is ‘Abinaasee‘ — imperishable, undying, immortal, indestructible etc.). The SGGS further asserts that the Satgur abides in the mind of everybody (‘ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਸਾਚਾ ਮਨਿ ਵਸੈ’). However, the Satgur needs to be Awakened within by churning the Gurbani or the Shabad-Vichaar!BECOMING THE GURBANI.

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਮੇਰਾ ਸਦਾ ਸਦਾ ਨਾ ਆਵੈ ਨਾ ਜਾਇ ॥ ਓਹੁ ਅਬਿਨਾਸੀ ਪੁਰਖੁ ਹੈ ਸਭ ਮਹਿ ਰਹਿਆ ਸਮਾਇ ॥੧੩॥: My Satguru (Sachaa Giyan or true Wisdom) is always there, everywhere, which neither comes nor goes. The Satguru is imperishable, and pervades within all. ||13|| (sggs 759).

Hence, the Gurbani teaches us Formlessness non-duality. The Gurbani further reminds us NOT to serve any embodied beings, for they are born and then die like anybody else! The Guru Shabad’s spiritual Giyan-Wisdom is Formless, ‘Eternal’ ( ਨਾਸ-ਰਹਿਤ, ਜਾਗਦੀ ਜੋਤਿ), unperishable and infinite oceans that will never run dry.

Hence in Sikhi of the SGGS, the Guru is neither a body-frame, nor a picture (Moorat or portrait), nor a paper. Because a body will perish one day and so do pictures or paper.

But the Giyan-Wisdom will NOT perish, for it is without any form, shape, or color!

  • ਦੇਹੀ ਕਾਚੀ ਕਾਗਦ ਮਿਕਦਾਰਾ ॥ ਬੂੰਦ ਪਵੈ ਬਿਨਸੈ ਢਹਤ ਨ ਲਾਗੈ ਬਾਰਾ ॥: The body is frail and perishable; the paper is limited. When the drop of water falls upon it – the paper – crumbles and dissolves instantaneously (sggs 1048).
  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਜਾਗਤਾ ਹੈ ਦੇਉ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: The Satiguru (ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ – true Wisdom) is the living divinity (ਜੀਉਂਦਾ-ਜਾਗਦਾ ਦੇਉ). ||1||Pause|| (sggs 479).

In a nutshell, Wisdom of the Gurbani is for the mind (Surat-ਸੁਰਤ). Because, as mentioned above, it’s the mind that needs to become a Sikh!

A Sikh who reflects on the Gurbani (SGGS) and understands the Gurmat as is and applies its Wisdom (Sikhiaa) to his daily life, the SGGS claims that Sikh’s mind is never empty or devoid of his Guru. The bright light of a candle never ceases to shine once another candle has been lit by its flame.

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਤੇ ਖਾਲੀ ਕੋ ਨਹੀ ਮੇਰੈ ਪ੍ਰਭਿ ਮੇਲਿ ਮਿਲਾਏ ॥: None is devoid of the Satigur; (Satgur – Knowledge of Truth – ਸਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ, Wisdom…) unites with my Mool within. (sggs 850).
  • ਗੁਰੁ ਮੇਰੈ ਸੰਗਿ ਸਦਾ ਹੈ ਨਾਲੇ ॥: My Guru is always with me, near at hand (sggs 394).
  • ਗੁਰੂ ਸਿਖੁ ਸਿਖੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਹੈ ਏਕੋ ਗੁਰ ਉਪਦੇਸੁ ਚਲਾਏ ॥: The Guru’s Sikh, and the Sikh’s Guru, are one and the same; the Sikh also continues to carry forward the Gur-Upadesh (Gur-Giyan, Sikhia, Wisdom, Bibek…). (sggs 444).

Guru, Giyan, Bibek, Paarbrahm, Parmesar, Hukam are Synonymous

The divine Hukam (Universal System-Rule-Law of Nature, ਕੁਦਰਤੀ ਨਿਯਮ) is without form, shape, and color. Similarly, Giyan-Wisdom and Virtues (ਗੁਣ) are also without any form, shape, or color. Accordingly, the Gurbani holds the Creator (Rabb, Universal Energy…) and the Guru to be same thing (‘ਗੁਰੁ ਪਰਮੇਸਰੁ ਏਕੋ ਜਾਣੁ’).

  • ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮ ਗੁਰ ਨਾਹੀ ਭੇਦ ॥੪॥੧੧॥੨੪॥ : There is no difference between God and the Guru. ||4||11||24|| (sggs 1142).
  • ਗੁਰ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮ ਪਰਮੇਸੁਰ ਅਪਰੰਪਰ ਅਲਖ ਅਭੇਵ ॥੧੬॥ : The Guru is God, the Transcendent, Infinite, unseen and inscrutable. ||16|| (sggs 522).
  • ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਵਾਹਿ ਜੀਉ ॥ … ਸਤਿ ਸਾਚੁ ਸ੍ਰੀ ਨਿਵਾਸੁ ਆਦਿ ਪੁਰਖੁ ਸਦਾ ਤੁਹੀ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਵਾਹਿ ਜੀਉ ॥੧॥੬॥ : O Guru! O wonderous Guru! O magnificent Guru! Wow! … The Creator whose existence is permanent resides within you, O Guru! O wonderous Guru! O magnificent Guru! Wow! (sggs 1402).
  • ਵਾਹਿ ਗੁਰੂ ਗੁਰੂ ਮੰਤ੍ਰ ਹੈ ਜਪ ਹਉਮੈਂ ਖੋਈ ॥ : O Wondrous Guru (i.e. Wahi Guru) You (i.e. Guru) are my Mantar, realizing You I have eliminated my false ego-sense (Haumai). (Bhai Gurdas Ji, Var 13).

Furthermore, the Gurbani asserts that both ‘Guru’ and ‘Parmesar‘ (Rabb, Creator) are not only the same thing but also remains Within all (‘ਸਭ ਮਹਿ ਰਹਿਆ ਸਮਾਇ’).

  • ਗੁਰੁ ਪਰਮੇਸਰੁ ਏਕੁ ਹੈ ਸਭ ਮਹਿ ਰਹਿਆ ਸਮਾਇ ॥ : Rabb (Parmesar) and the Knowledge (i.e., ‘Gur’: Giyan, Brahm-Giyan, Wisdom…) of Rabb is the same thing (i.e. One), pervading and permeating in all (sggs 53).
  • ਹਰਿ ਇਕੋ ਮੇਰਾ ਮਸਲਤੀ ਭੰਨਣ ਘੜਨ ਸਮਰਥੁ ॥: ‘Hari’ (i.e. Mool, Naam, Universal Energy, Hukam: System-Rule-Law of Nature…) is my only counselor, who is all-powerful of breaking and constructing (i.e., creating and destroying…). (sggs 958).
  • ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਹੈ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੋ ਦੇਇ ਦ੍ਰਿੜਾਇ ॥: The Gur-Giyan (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).

Nature of the Guru’s Service-‘Gur Ki Sevaa’

Now, the answer to a question of how to serve the Guru becomes very clear.

According to the Gurbani in SGGS, the way to serve the Guru or Satguru is through Shabad Vichaar or churning the Gurbani, then live a daily life based on the Enlightening Message of the Guru Shabad.

As follows, the Gurbani in the SGGS reveals to its Sikhs (students, learners) the nature of the Guru’s Service (‘Gur Ki Sevaa‘). 

  • ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਸੇਵਾ ਸਬਦੁ ਵੀਚਾਰੁ ॥ ਹਉਮੈ ਮਾਰੇ ਕਰਣੀ ਸਾਰੁ ॥੭॥ : Undertaking the deed of controlling my false ego-sense (Haumai) and Enlightening myself with the spiritual Message within the Shabad (Shabad Vichaar) is service (Sevaa) of the Guru (ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਸੇਵਾ – Gur Ki Sevaa). ॥7॥. (sggs 223).
  • ਕਿਸੁ ਸੇਵੀ ਤੈ ਕਿਸੁ ਸਾਲਾਹੀ ॥ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਸੇਵੀ ਸਬਦਿ ਸਾਲਾਹੀ ॥ ਸਚੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਸਦਾ ਮਤਿ ਊਤਮ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਕਮਲੁ ਪ੍ਰਗਾਸੀ ਹੇ ॥੩॥: Whom should I serve, and whom should I praise? I serve the ‘Satguru‘ (Creator-connecting True Wisdom – ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ) through Shabad (i.e. living life with the Satguru’s Upadesh, Giyan, Wisdom, Naam etc.). Through the Creator-connecting Shabad, one’s intellect remains sublime and he feels so delighted, as if the Lotus within his Mind has bloomed (i.e. Enlightened). ||3|| (sggs 1048).
  • ਉਤਮ ਪਦਵੀ ਪਾਈਐ ਸਚੇ ਰਹੈ ਸਮਾਇ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਪੂਰਬਿ ਜਿਨ ਕਉ ਲਿਖਿਆ ਤਿਨਾ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਮਿਲਿਆ ਆਇ ॥੧॥ : (With the birth and death cycle eliminated) my mind Realizes a Spiritually Elevated State Within which the Creator remains. Nanak, only those who accounted moments of their lives for (Shabad Vichaar) Realize the Satguru (Creator-connecting True Wisdom — ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ). ॥1॥ (sggs 552).

The Gurbani holds this Sevaa or service — Shabd Vichaar — of the Guru is meaningful, fruitful, successful, worthwhile etc. when done in sincerity:

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਸੇਵਾ ਸਫਲ ਹੈ ਜੇ ਕੋ ਕਰੇ ਚਿਤੁ ਲਾਇ ॥ ਨਾਮੁ ਪਦਾਰਥੁ ਪਾਈਐ ਅਚਿੰਤੁ ਵਸੈ ਮਨਿ ਆਇ ॥ : Service in the name of the Satguru (Creator-connecting True Wisdom – ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ) is meaningful when done in sincerity. (In such service) the Treasure of Divine Naam (Wisdom / Virtues) is realized and the mind comes to reside in a worry Free State (State of Inner Peace). (sggs 552).
  • ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਹਉਮੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਜਲਾਏ ॥: Internalization of the spiritual Message of the Shabad (the Gurmukh-Hood State of Mind) burn Haumai (false ego-sense). (sggs 942).

The status of the ‘Gurbani’ is attained only by that Bani which was recorded by the Guru Sahibs during their lifetime in the Pothi SahibSri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS). Rest of the Bani is ‘Kachee‘ (half baked; filth; useless; lies).

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਬਿਨਾ ਹੋਰ ਕਚੀ ਹੈ ਬਾਣੀ ॥ ਬਾਣੀ ਤ ਕਚੀ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਬਾਝਹੁ ਹੋਰ ਕਚੀ ਬਾਣੀ ॥ ਕਹਦੇ ਕਚੇ ਸੁਣਦੇ ਕਚੇ ਕਚੀ ਆਖਿ ਵਖਾਣੀ ॥ : The Bani uttered by anybody other than the Satguru is ‘Kachee‘ (half baked; useless; lies, false, devoid of divine Wisdom etc.). Yes, without being uttered or approved by the Satguru, all other Bani is ‘Kachee‘. False are the reciters (of ‘Kachee Bani), false are the listeners (of ‘Kachee Bani); false are those who discourse on ‘Kachee‘ Bani. (sggs 920).
  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਰੀਸੈ ਹੋਰਿ ਕਚੁ ਪਿਚੁ ਬੋਲਦੇ ਸੇ ਕੂੜਿਆਰ ਕੂੜੇ ਝੜਿ ਪੜੀਐ ॥
    ਓਨ੍ਹ੍ਹਾ ਅੰਦਰਿ ਹੋਰੁ ਮੁਖਿ ਹੋਰੁ ਹੈ ਬਿਖੁ ਮਾਇਆ ਨੋ ਝਖਿ ਮਰਦੇ ਕੜੀਐ ॥ : Emulating the Satguru, some false ones utter indefensible and false words, but because of their falsehood they fall from grace (i.e. they cannot emulate Satgur and their falsehood stands exposed). (sggs 304).

Guru Shabad teaches us ‘Chaj-ਚਜੁ’ — Way of life

The Giyan-Wisdom of the SGGS teaches us ‘Chaj-ਚਜੁ’ of life — the Way of proper living, proper behavior in life, ability to live Enlightened or Guru Shabad-Oriented Lifestyle (Gurmukh mindset). Hence the SGGS asks us to learn the proper skill of life by learning the Guru’s Giyan-Wisdom.

  • ਗੁਰ ਮਿਲਿ ਚਜੁ ਅਚਾਰੁ ਸਿਖੁ ਤੁਧੁ ਕਦੇ ਨ ਲਗੈ ਦੁਖੁ ॥੩॥ : Meeting the Gur (-Giyan, Wisdom…), learn skill (of life) and good conduct, then sorrow will never affect you. ||3|| (sggs 50).

If we don’t learn ‘Chaj-ਚਜੁ’ of life from the SGGS, then what’s the use of reading or listening to the Gurbani or visiting Gurdwaras?

  • ਗੁਰ ਕਉ ਜਾਣਿ ਨ ਜਾਣਈ ਕਿਆ ਤਿਸੁ ਚਜੁ ਅਚਾਰੁ ॥: A person who deliberately does not learn and practice the Guru’s (Giyan or Wisdom), then the method or style of his whole life is NOT right. (sggs 19).

Need of the Guru Shabad

The SGGS counsels:

  • ਗੁਰ ਬਿਨੁ ਘੋਰੁ ਅੰਧਾਰੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਬਿਨੁ ਸਮਝ ਨ ਆਵੈ ॥ ਗੁਰ ਬਿਨੁ ਸੁਰਤਿ ਨ ਸਿਧਿ ਗੁਰੂ ਬਿਨੁ ਮੁਕਤਿ ਨ ਪਾਵੈ ॥: Without the Guru (i.e., without Giyan, Wisdom, Bibek…), there is utter darkness (of ignorance on the way of life); without the Guru, understanding (of the correct way of life) does not come. Without the Guru, there is no (higher) Awareness does not develop and no success (in the battle of life) is obtained; without the Guru, there is no liberation. (sggs 1377).

The SGGS teaches us that without understanding we humans act as animals. It’s the Enlightening Wisdom that separates humans from animals.

  • ਬਿਨੁ ਬੂਝੇ ਪਸੂ ਭਏ ਬੇਤਾਲੇ ॥੬॥: Without understanding, people become beast (-nature) and demon ||6|| (sggs 224).
  • ਸਬਦੁ ਗੁਰ ਪੀਰਾ ਗਹਿਰ ਗੰਭੀਰਾ ਬਿਨੁ ਸਬਦੈ ਜਗੁ ਬਉਰਾਨੰ ॥: Shabad (Giyan, Upadesh, Naam, Wisdom…) is the Guru and Peer; (with this Shabad, a person) becomes profoundly earnest; (however) without the Shabad the world is gone crazy (sggs 635).

Since Sikhi is a Way of life based on the Giyan-Wisdom, therefore, Wisdom is NECESSARY for the mind to live a daily life of Virtues.

  • ਮਨ ਸਮਝਾਵਨ ਕਾਰਨੇ ਕਛੂਅਕ ਪੜੀਐ ਗਿਆਨ ॥੫॥: To instruct the mind (ਉੱਚੇ ਜੀਵਨ ਦੀ ਸੂਝ ਦੇਣ ਵਾਸਤੇ-to raise the Consciousness to the High Plane, one) ought to study Divine Knowledge (ਉੱਚੀ ਵਿਚਾਰ ਵਾਲੀ ਬਾਣੀ…) to some extent. ||5|| (sggs 340).

In a nutshell, Sikhi of the SGGS or Nanak creates Gurmukh MINDSETS (Daas, Bhagat or Jan) — Wise, Bibeki, intelligent, responsible, fearless, dutiful, Braveheart, truthful, virtuous, ਵਿਚਾਰਵਾਨ, ਬੁਧੀਮਾਨ, ਅਕਲਮੰਦ, ਤਰਕਸ਼ੀਲ, etc. — who are capable of discriminating between right and wrong.

Gur Gam – ‘ਗੁਰ ਗਮ’

As discussed before, ‘Gur’ or ‘Guru’ in Sikhi of the SGGS = Giyan-Wisdom, Bibek…

The term ‘Gam‘ is not easy to translate in English. Its closest English meaning could be summarized as follows: to go, to mount, to ascend; to reach or approach (ਪਹੁੰਚ), to arrive or access, to get or obtain; to get acquaintance, to get versed in divine knowledge, apprehension, and so on.

Simply put, ‘Gur Gam – ਗੁਰ ਗਮ’ => entering of the Divine Wisdom in the intellect; walking on the Way of the Wisdom of the SGGS; being established in the Wisdom of the SGGS; living daily life according to the Bibek Budhi or Wisdom of the SGGS; allowing the Guru Shabad to guide daily life; and so on. By constantly remembering it (living it), one becomes Guru Shabad-Oriented (i.e. Gurmukh Mindset).

  • ਖਿਨੁ ਰਮ ਗੁਰ ਗਮ ਹਰਿ ਦਮ ਨਹ ਜਮ ਹਰਿ ਕੰਠਿ ਨਾਨਕ ਉਰਿ ਹਾਰੀ ਰੇ ॥੨॥੫॥੧੩੪॥: (sggs 404).

In a nutshell, a Sikh is he/she who consider the SHABAD in the SGGS as their spiritual Guru and lives their daily life by Internalizing the Message of the the Creator-Connecting Shabad.

Establishing relationship with the Guru Shabad

In a nutshell, ‘Sikhi’ is not a game of the gross body-frame. It’s the mind (Surat – ਸੁਰਤ) that needs to become the Sikh for the GurSikhs Solve the Riddle!

To say it otherwise, relationship (connection, link…) is established with the Guru when we know that:

And, this Giyan-Wisdom of the Guru is for the mind to take. Defining the Satguru, the Gurbani says:

  • ਜਿਸੁ ਮਿਲਿਐ ਮਨਿ ਹੋਇ ਅਨੰਦੁ ਸੋ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਕਹੀਐ ॥ ਮਨ ਕੀ ਦੁਬਿਧਾ ਬਿਨਸਿ ਜਾਇ ਹਰਿ ਪਰਮ ਪਦੁ ਲਹੀਐ ॥੧॥ : He, by meeting (i.e. realizing) whom the mind is filled with ‘Anand‘ (Bliss) is called the Satiguru (True Giyan-Wisdom, ਸੱਚਾ ਗਿਆਨ…). Double-mindedness departs, and the supreme spiritual status of union with God is Realized. ||1|| (sggs 168).
  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਸਿਖ ਕਉ ਨਾਮ ਧਨੁ ਦੇਇ ॥ ਗੁਰ ਕਾ ਸਿਖੁ ਵਡਭਾਗੀ ਹੇ ॥ : Satgur Gives the Sikh the Treasure of Naam (Divine Wisdom / Virtues). The Sikh of the Guru is thus Blessed. (sggs 286).

However, contrary to what the Gurmat Wisdom of the SGGS teaches us, the gross body-frame itself is still being made a ‘Sikh’. It’s the gross body-frame still being worshipped by the Pujaaree-Vaad and Deraa-Vaad Baabaas!

  • ਗਿਆਨ ਹੀਣੰ ਅਗਿਆਨ ਪੂਜਾ ॥ ਅੰਧ ਵਰਤਾਵਾ ਭਾਉ ਦੂਜਾ ॥: Bereft of Spiritual Wisdom, (people) worship ignorance. In the love of duality (in love of Maya, their) conduct or behavior (keeps them mentally blind or ignorant of their spiritual life). (sggs 1412).

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26 comments

  1. Thank you veer Er Shiv Karan Singh Deol for your reply.

    Humble request: If you like to quote Gurbani verses, please select your quotes from Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS). A Sikh’s Guru is the Shabad in Sri Guru Granth Sahib, no other Granth/scripture, Sant, Saadh, Baabaa, Jathedaar, personality… Thank you.

    Guru Sahib has a clear edict (ਫੈਸਲਾ, no compromise):

    • ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਬਿਨਾ ਹੋਰ ਕਚੀ ਹੈ ਬਾਣੀ ॥ ਬਾਣੀ ਤ ਕਚੀ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਬਾਝਹੁ ਹੋਰ ਕਚੀ ਬਾਣੀ ॥ ਕਹਦੇ ਕਚੇ ਸੁਣਦੇ ਕਚੇ ਕਚੀ ਆਖਿ ਵਖਾਣੀ ॥ (sggs 920).
    • ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਰੀਸੈ ਹੋਰਿ ਕਚੁ ਪਿਚੁ ਬੋਲਦੇ ਸੇ ਕੂੜਿਆਰ ਕੂੜੇ ਝੜਿ ਪੜੀਐ ॥ ਓਨ੍ਹ੍ਹਾ ਅੰਦਰਿ ਹੋਰੁ ਮੁਖਿ ਹੋਰੁ ਹੈ ਬਿਖੁ ਮਾਇਆ ਨੋ ਝਖਿ ਮਰਦੇ ਕੜੀਐ ॥ (sggs 304).
  2. Neither Nanak Ji nor Amar Das Ji have proclaimed themselves as the Lord or Guru in Adi Granth anywhere . The Guru is not born of man and woman . The Guru can be said to be the Supreme Immortal Power (SIP) as emphasised by 10ਵੀਂ ਪਾਤਿਸ਼ਾਹੀ in ਚੌਪਈ ਸਾਹਿਬ as under :
    ਆਦਿ ਅੰਤਿ ਏਕੈ ਅਵਤਾਰਾ ॥
    ਸੋਈ ਗੁਰੂ ਸਮਝਿਯਹੁ ਹਮਾਰਾ ॥

  3. This is so good. Total attention to the unchanging, seeing through the mirror of awareness , eternal Guru, one can see the true face, the formless faceless face. Living in this awareness as awareness itself is living , is awakening , is eternal living. Waho Waho to this wonderful Guru present in all of us pointing us to make this awareness our turban. Waheguru . Full Love T Singh Ji. What a blessing to have you here ! 🙏

  4. Thank you Singh Ji for your reply. Welcome to the Gurbani Blog.

    As taught in the Gurbani (SGGS), to become God-like is to Awaken Godly Virtues within and live a Divine Life.
    ਹਰਿ ਜਨੁ ਐਸਾ ਚਾਹੀਐ ਜੈਸਾ ਹਰਿ ਹੀ ਹੋਇ ॥੧੪੯॥ (sggs 1372).
    ਹਰਿ ਕਾ ਸੇਵਕੁ ਸੋ ਹਰਿ ਜੇਹਾ ॥ ਭੇਦੁ ਨ ਜਾਣਹੁ ਮਾਣਸ ਦੇਹਾ ॥ (sggs 1076.
    ਲੋਹਾ ਕੰਚਨੁ ਸਮ ਕਰਿ ਜਾਨਹਿ ਤੇ ਮੂਰਤਿ ਭਗਵਾਨਾ ॥੧॥ (sggs 1123).
    ਸੁਖੁ ਦੁਖੁ ਜਿਹ ਪਰਸੈ ਨਹੀ ਲੋਭੁ ਮੋਹੁ ਅਭਿਮਾਨੁ ॥ ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਸੁਨੁ ਰੇ ਮਨਾ ਸੋ ਮੂਰਤਿ ਭਗਵਾਨ ॥੧੩॥ (sggs 1427).
    ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਦੇਉ ਪਰਤਖਿ ਹਰਿ ਮੂਰਤਿ ਜੋ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਬਚਨ ਸੁਣਾਵੈ ॥ (sggs 1264).

  5. Vjkk vjkf T Singh ji,
    I have came across these 2 shabads and would like ur veechar.
    – ਅਉਤਰਿਆ ਅਉਤਾਰੁ ਲੈ ਸੋ ਪੁਰਖੁ ਸੁਜਾਣੁ ॥: ਉਹ ਸੁਜਾਨ ਅਕਾਲ ਪੁਰਖ (ਆਪ ਗੁਰੂ ਅਮਰਦਾਸ ਦੇ ਰੂਪ ਵਿਚ) ਅਵਤਾਰ ਲੈ ਕੇ ਜਗਤ ਵਿਚ ਆਇਆ ਹੈ ।
    – ਗੁਰੁ ਨਾਨਕੁ ਨਾਨਕੁ ਹਰਿ ਸੋਇ ॥੪॥੭॥੯॥: Nanak is the Guru; Nanak is the Lord Himself. ||4||7||9||
    What is ur understanding is Guru an Avtar of God? but I also thought Ik Oankar is ajooni. Is their a mistake I am making somewhere? Do I not understand what ajooni means?

  6. Thank you Er Shiv Karan Singh Deol Ji for your reply.
    Please try re-reading the post with open mind, free of entrenched beliefs.
    Welcome to the Gurbani Blog.

  7. Please elucidate the concept of ਗੁਰੂ , ਗੁਰੁ , ਗੁਰ , ਗੁਰਿ , ਸਤਿਗਰੂ , ਸਤਿਗੁਰ , ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ , ਵਾਹਗੁਰੂ , ਬ੍ਰਹਮ , ਬ੍ਰਹਮਾ , ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮ , ਪੂਰਨਬ੍ਰਹਮ in Gurbani

  8. You have to do Karam nadar or favor to yourself. According to the Gurbani, it’s all within!

    Hence, the Gurbani makes us responsible:
    the Gurbani wants us to be reponsible.

    ਆਪਣ ਹਥੀ ਆਪਣਾ ਆਪੇ ਹੀ ਕਾਜੁ ਸਵਾਰੀਐ ॥੨੦॥ (sggs 474).
    ਕਰਿ ਕਰਿ ਕਰਣਾ ਲਿਖਿ ਲੈ ਜਾਹੁ ॥ ਆਪਿ ਬੀਜਿ ਆਪੇ ਹੀ ਖਾਇ ॥ (sggs 25).
    ਜੇਹੀ ਸੁਰਤਿ ਤੇਹਾ ਤਿਨ ਰਾਹੁ ॥ (sggs 25).
    ਜੈਸਾ ਸੇਵੈ ਤੈਸੋ ਹੋਇ ॥੪॥ (sggs 223).
    ਜੇਹੀ ਮਨਸਾ ਕਰਿ ਲਾਗੈ ਤੇਹਾ ਫਲੁ ਪਾਏ ॥ (sggs 116).

  9. Thanks.. again it could be my mat that I am struggling to understand.

    if you see this shabad https://www.searchgurbani.com/guru-granth-sahib/ang/1276/line/54779

    ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਵਿਣੁ ਕਿਨੈ ਨ ਪਾਇਆ ਮਨਿ ਵੇਖਹੁ ਰਿਦੈ ਬੀਚਾਰਿ ॥

    Sathigur Vin Kinai N Paaeiaa Man Vaekhahu Ridhai Beechaar ||

    Without the True Guru, no one finds it; see this in your mind, and consider this in your heart.

    ਵਡਭਾਗੀ ਗੁਰੁ ਪਾਇਆ ਭਵਜਲੁ ਉਤਰੇ ਪਾਰਿ ॥੬॥

    Vaddabhaagee Gur Paaeiaa Bhavajal Outharae Paar ||6||

    Makes me think that there is duality. Satgur and EK Onkar Akal Purakh is different. So you need to find true guru and then only you can find Har Nam.

    But in the beginning of shabad says “Karam Hovai Thaa Sathigur Paaeeai Vin Karamai Paaeiaa N Jaae ||”

    Sorry to bother. I will read your other posts to clarify my doubts.

  10. Thank you Inderpal Dodd Ji for your reply. Welcome to the Gurbani Blog.

    About your inquiries: instead of me repeating the whole post here again, I would say please re-read the post again. You will find answers to your questions.

    Thank you again.

  11. SSA Ji,

    I have a question. Which Guru is Guru Nanak Dev Ji referring here or all other Guru Sahib ji in Bani?
    ਸਬਦੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਸੁਰਤਿ ਧੁਨਿ ਚੇਲਾ ॥: (sggs 943).

    Almost on every Ang it says bin gur paya na jaaye. How can we connect to the Guru? I get confused every time when in bani mentions Guru. I start thinking of different identity than Ek Onkar but then we have this shabad ਗੁਰੁ ਪਰਮੇਸਰੁ ਏਕੋ ਜਾਣੁ ॥: (sggs 864). if both are same then why mention it differently?

    Pardon my ignorance.

    Thanks

  12. Thank you sister Simran Kaur Ji for your reply. Welcome to the Gurbani Blog.

    As you inquired, soon there will be a separate post on “Gur Charan Kamal, Gur Charan Dhoorh and Gur Moorat”.

  13. Thanks for this article . I was looking for exactly this kind of clarification .
    Appreciate your work a lot .Great sewa
    Regards

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