Why Are We Here? – 4
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Whenever we are asked to produce proof of our identity, we produce a document with our picture on it and such an identity card is a universal proof of identity. These cards are in forms of passports, driver’s license, School, college and work ID cards. But if we look at it carefully it is an image of body with special emphasis on the face and it is not a full representation of who we are. Besides body, we are mind and then there is a third constituent, which is the soul. We are aware of our mind and its faculties as intellect, feelings, emotions, etc; but we are not aware of soul. In fact, we are totally oblivious of our soul as it is beyond reach of our senses. Bhagat Naamdev Ji has portrayed this picture in these words:
“Jeea kee jyot na jaanai ko-ee.
Tai mai keeaa so maaloom ho-ee.” — (SGGS, Pg. No.1351)
Meaning: No one knows the light of the soul (that it resides within everyone). But whatever I do, that soul which resides within knows it all.
It is because of this soul or divine source of energy within, we can see, listen, eat, drink, breathe, and do everything else. This soul can be compared to a battery that keeps this toy or vehicle the human body working. If the battery is not there, then the toy or vehicle will not work. Similar is the condition of this body when the soul is not there, then body becomes dead. The body becomes cold and it cannot even maintain its normal body temperature, nor can it do any other normal functions, which we all take for granted when we are alive. So, it is only through the Guru we realize that most important constituent that keeps us alive is soul. We can survive for many days, without food, and maybe survive for many hours without water, but how long can we survive without breathing? We cannot survive even for a moment. This breathing which is essential for survival and functioning of body is possible because of soul only.
Therefore, the major thrust of Guru’s education is to make us aware of our soul and then to connect us with our soul. Guru Ji wants us to make this connection with it while we are alive and not postpone it as something that can be done after death. After death the soul is gone, so how can the connection be made? Guru ji has advised us that:
“Mun too(n) jyot swaroop hai aapanaa mool pachhaan.
Mun har jee thaerai naal hai gurmathee rang maan.” — (SGGS, Pg. No. 441)
Meaning: Oh, my mind! You are the embodiment of the Divine Light- so know your source. Oh, my mind! The beloved Lord is with you, through Guru’s teachings enjoy His love.
These words of Guru Amar Das Ji are very poignant as these words inform us about the vital force which is within us and which enables us to have all life experiences. Our Gurus were connected with this source all the time, and Gurus want us to have this experience too. We can experience our source when we plug ourselves to that source. Therefore, Guru Ji has explained:
“Sabh meh Shabad vartai prabh saacha” — (SGGS, Pg. No.1275)
Meaning: Amongst all the True Lord’s Shabad (meaning soul) is pervading.
If Guru’s education is to be summed up in a single sentence, then it can be said that Guru’s effort is to connect us with our soul. Guru Ji says:
“Jeewan tau ganeeai har paekhaa.” — (SGGS, Pg. No.1221)
Meaning: When one see’s God (or soul) then only can the life be judged as alive.
Guru Ji’s effort and focus is to bring the awareness of this vital constituent in our awareness. When our mind gets attuned with it, it will start enjoying such a feeling of bliss that it will not need external stimulants in form of some food, drink, drug, music or entertainment to feel good. The source has been discovered and it is matter of tapping into it. Guru Ji says:
“Eik ras chaakh shabad tripathaasae.” — (SGGS, Pg. No. 839)
Meaning: Some taste the sublime essence of the Shabad and are satisfied.
Here that source of energy has been referred to Shabad –literal meaning word; but contextual meaning will be sound and deeper meaning the source of vibration that produces sound and thus by implication the source of energy or soul. It is listening to this sound of the soul that Guru Nanak Dev Ji has emphasized four times in the four Stanzas on listening in Japji Sahib by saying:
“Suneai dhookh paap kaa naas.” — (SGGS, Pg. No. 2, 3)
Meaning: By listening (to Naam / Shabad or soul) - pain and sin are destroyed.
At present we are tuned to listening to the sound from external sources through the ears, and Guru Ji transforms that mind set and open new vistas for us to listen to the source of all sound and movement that resides within each of us as soul.
Now, if we put Chapter 2,3 and 4 together, we can see a relationship and the connection. First, there are three constituents in humans – body, mind and soul. Guru Ji has compared the body to a vehicle that can take us to destination, which is experience of spirit. In this vehicle called body the mind is the driver of the vehicle and soul is the passenger making the journey. So, soul can be considered as the most precious cargo that has been entrusted to body and mind to deliver it safely at the destination. Now if because of carelessness of the driver (mind) the vehicle veers in the wrong direction or the makes a detour the vehicle (body) could be a complete wreck. Alternatively, if the vehicle (body) breaks down on the journey then the journey will be aborted. So, the vehicle (body) and the driver (mind) have a very important responsibility on their shoulders as these two together can make the journey successful. Otherwise we can have a wreck or a breakdown in other words a ruined life in our hands. Guru Nanak Dev Ji portrayed it as:
“Mun andhhai janam gavaaeiaa.” — (SGGS, Pg. No. 464)
Meaning: The blind man has wasted his life away.
Guru Ji is making us aware of the potential and also of the consequences of not availing of the opportunity. Once we make a connection with the soul our mind and bodies become more alive and alert. Guru Ji’s education brings the soul in the center of perspective from its total obscurity and a new Sun of Spirituality rises over our mind.
Thought: I am embodiment of Divine Light having human experience.
Quote: “Mun too(n) jyot swaroop hai aapanaa mool pachhaan. Mun har jee thaerai naal hai gurmathee rang maan.”
Meaning: Oh, my mind! You are the embodiment of the Divine Light - Recognize your own origin. Oh, my mind! The beloved Lord is with you, through Guru’s teachings enjoy His love.
Action: I will explore my inner world and through the Guru’s Word try to gain spiritual experience.
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