From Mother to Child: YUKTANAND SINGH
The Way of the Sikh
Letter & Spirit # 35
Translated from Bhai Vir Singh's ‘Gurmukh Sikhia’
Simran is the purpose of our life.
No one can appraise the value of simran. It is priceless. Its value is realized after death. After death, those who did not do simran will be sorry.
Those who did simran, they too, will be sorry. Realizing that simran was such a priceless jewel. They will regret that they did not accumulate more of it during their lifetime here.
At first, simran removes dirt from our heart. For this reason, we may not enjoy it at first. But as the mind is cleansed, simran starts to taste sweet. Then we do not want to stop it.
Those who do, or will do simran, even five minutes a day, they will find that their afterlife is delightful. As William Thomas Stead wrote in his book, ‘Letters from Julia’: his sister Julia sent him messages through a medium after her death, and she told him that even if he practiced simran for five minutes everyday he would find that in his afterlife he was happy and wealthy.
Guru Granth Sahib also commands us that we must do simran.
“O Kabir whether is it for one watch, half a watch, or even half of that …” [GGS:1377].
One watch is 24 minutes long. A quarter of that is only six minutes. In other words, simran even for the shortest time is extremely beneficial.
“The Formless One Himself resides in His simran” [GGS:263].
When we do simran, we are with Waheguru.
Some people give up simran because their mind was not attracted to it. This is a huge mistake.
A mother talks lovingly to her infant, the infant listens and, spontaneously, retains those words in the subconscious mind. This is how the child learns to talk. Without the mother talking to the infant the infant could not have learned to talk.
Similarly, when we repeat naam it percolates through our subconscious mind. When our subconscious becomes saturated then naam starts to taste sweet to us.
Even if our mind dwells in naam only for brief moments, we should not regard it as trivial. A complete control over our mind is achieved only from Waheguru’s complete benevolence or grace (kirpa).
“The mind comes under control, O Nanak, if He grants His perfect grace.” [GGS:298]
Thus, we must not give up simran even when our mind is not so inclined. Repetition of simran saturates the subconscious mind and thus, eventually, simran becomes a habit and starts to flow naturally.
Our mind is also influenced by the company it keeps. We see that our night is dominated by what we did during the day. Someone who was in a holy company, listened to the kirtan and spiritual discourse, will dream about it at night. But someone who was engaged in some evil deeds will have dreams of the same deeds.
In a way, we have three forms of relationships: with the Guru, with Waheguru, and with our own self. If we love ourselves, then we must maintain pure character.
People with similar characters attract each other. Similarly, we can meet Waheguru only when we have acquired the virtues from Waheguru, just as, water merges with water, but mercury does not merge with water.
We would not add dirty water to the holy pool at Darbar Sahib. But no one would stop us if we added clean lake water. Similarly, a married couple must practice fidelity and purity of character, become sants and hold satsangat and thus emancipate others in their company.
Those women who go around with their heads uncovered wandering in the nightclubs with other men, they excite only lust. One cannot find inner peace in this manner. Gurbani and naam forge concrete contact with Waheguru, and then we find inner peace.
At first, naam is a physical act but later it turns into a spiritual act.
Study of gurbani illuminates the mind. Then, one is not influenced by self-willed talk or advice.
“Gurbani is the light in this world” [GGS:67].
Some argue, “What’s the use of mere mechanical repetition of ‘Waheguru-Waheguru’?”
This is not a valid argument. In Tibet, some people write the name of their deity on a prayer wheel perched on a handle, and they keep spinning it with their hand.
That could be called mechanical.
Uttering ‘Waheguru’ from the mouth cannot be called mechanical because we are not lifeless. We are not a machine.
We are conscious beings who possess intellect and thus, whatever we do, or say, including uttering ‘Waheguru-Waheguru’, definitely leaves an impression on us.
August 30, 2013
Conversation about this article
1: Manjit Kaur (Frederick, Maryland, USA), August 30, 2013, 8:41 AM.
This article is beautifully written as a constant reminder not only for the mother to repeat naam, but for mothers whose children have grown up and become distracted with life to continue on this path before it's too late. Thank you, Dr Yuktanand Singh ji. I am blessed with a beautiful daughter ... and doubly blessed in that I was able to recite gurbani to her during pregancy and after she born.