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Anywhere … Everywhere:
The Way of The Sikh -
Letter & Spirit # 47





Translated from ‘Gurmukh Sikhia’ by Bhai Vir Singh


Do not discourage someone who is sincerely devoted to some object of worship, if you do not have the capability to offer something better.

There was a girl who was devoted to a figurine of a goddess. Her uncle, also a Hindu, was a follower of the Arya Samaj. He admonished her: "Who, in their right mind, worships an idol?"

So, the girl put the figurine away. But she became depressed and withdrawn. She did not enjoy life and wanted to die. Her mother took her to a wise man for counsel.

He asked to see the girl's uncle. He told the uncle, "You have stopped her from worshipping an idol. That idol had become her inner support. Now she has no support. How can she survive? What did you replace the support of an idol that you took away from her, with?"

The uncle realized his error. He apologized to the girl. He put the idol back in front of the girl. She resumed her worship and was happy again.

*   *   *   *   *

We listen to someone doing kirtan and kathaa (exposition of gurbani, etc). But we must not become attached to the individual who does these. The aim should be to keep our mind under gurbani's guidance. Remain engaged in a spiritual toil.

Additionally, keep your spiritual state hidden. There is no need to disclose it to anyone.

"O Nanak, the bhagats are always augmenting" [GGS:2.18].

Remain spiritually progressive (and thus, cheerful). This is a sign of bhakti. Sometimes we are cheerful from doing simran while at other times we find this bliss in acts of kindness towards others.

Our faculty of attention is destined to enjoy union with Waheguru. Do not overtax it. Sleep at least seven hours every day. Those who are up during the early hours, before dawn, take a nap during the day. Even a ten minute nap relaxes the nerves.

*   *   *   *   *

God is everywhere. He is also inside us. When we do simran then we become familiar with it. This is the purpose of our toil. Meeting Waheguru is: elimination of haumai.

Waheguru cannot be "seen" but upon meeting Him inside us we start being spiritually elevated. Our inner self enjoys the taste of this union.

People want to have a concrete experience and thus they fall prey to various mind-games, hypnotism, etc. They even seek help from the stars, the planets, astrology, etc., and they follow anything someone had shown as promising to them.

I ask from Waheguru only for the boon of never forgetting His naam.

Whenever we are repeating naam, we are being mindful of Waheguru's presence and thus we are in contact with Him. But when our mind does not repeat naam it continues to be engrossed with the world and its tastes.

Man is 'God in the making' … Just as droplets of water are filtered into a  container, the souls are absorbed into Waheguru when they are purified after having earned the wealth of naam.

Naam simran means practicing Waheguru's presence.

Simran is the toil, the journey ... and yet, it is also the reward, the destination. ‘May I continue doing simran’, this is all I beg from Waheguru, nothing else … and this is why I am cheerful.

May Waheguru's Will taste sweet to us and may we find happiness in whatever He does. Only this has real merit, and this is the method towards all fulfilments.

But its practice is difficult. Rather, it is easy to find those who can do miracles; those who can raise the dead. But meeting those individuals who are devoted to naam and who rely on naam, is difficult.

The taste of Waheguru's presence accumulates in our subconscious mind. The conscious mind often becomes dejected and it can lose direction easily. For this reason, Waheguru blesses us with the company of a gurmukh for our support.

Guru Sahiban have sometimes called the mind a 'donkey'. At other times, when it lives in Waheguru's presence, they have called it an embodiment of spiritual light.

"O beauteous and imbued mind, imbue yourself with the True Color. If you were colored with beauteous gurbani, then that color never fades and it is never lost" [GGS:427.1].

We need to stay engaged only in naam simran. Those individuals who identify themselves with God inside, they give up naam simran. Their mind then does not lean on being mindful of Waheguru and it ends up being engrossed with the world.

Whatever we do will always influence our mind in some manner. Even the simple act of wearing a coat has an influence on our mental state. Similarly, those who do simran, their mind spontaneously starts to be concentrated. Naam simran results in our mind becoming focused.

Others who engage in efforts to achieve visions are also practicing this same mental concentration. But they experience whatever someone had suggested to them. Such acts in fact kill their spirit and they lose the cheerfulness that came with simran.

*   *   *   *   *

There was a Muslim fakir who had taken a vow of silence. He was an advanced soul. You would always find him at Darbar Sahib. He used to care about me. If I was ever sad, within a couple hours he would show up at my house and would gesture as if he was shooing something away from me. After a while, I would feel rejuvenated. Then he would leave.

Similarly, [Here Bhai Sahib was addressing a Sikh] when you were sad, a pious man came to relieve your sadness. This is our True Guru's benevolence. He protects his own.

Waheguru is always benevolent toward us. When we do simran then we are in contact with Him and thus we become recipient of His benevolence.

*   *   *   *   *

Someone who practices naam cannot have haumai.

Someone who practices 'jupp' (meditation) or 'tupp' (penance) feels that he is making an effort. But someone who does simran, says, "Who am I to do anything, I only keep calling 'Waheguru ... Waheguru'".

We are to become thus purified through naam simran. The Infinite Being then causes this finite being to be merged with Him.

February 3, 2015

Conversation about this article

1: Sangat Singh (Kuala Lunpur, Malaysia), February 03, 2015, 2:48 PM.

Yuktanand ji, where have you been all these months while we thirsted for your offerings of Gurmukh Sikhia? 'Nirgun aap sargaun bhee ohee' - [GGS:287.17]): "He Himself is absolute, and remains related and unrelated, seen and unseen." There was an incident during Swami Ramakrishna's time. A simple houseboy with absolutely no education happened to accompany his master, Ramachandra Datta, a close devotee of Swami Ramakrishna, whose gaze fell on this unlettered lad and asked him to stay back at his ashram. During that time Swami Vivekanand who was very much under the influence of Bramo Samaj also had come under the influence of Swami Ramakrishna. The lad at that time had started his intense sadhana and spent most of his time in deep meditation. One of the duties was to bathe a large number of idols in the ashram every day. When Vivekanand saw him, he told him that he was wasting his time and should throw away all the idols into the Ganga that flowed near Dakshineswar. The lad tied all the idols in a bundle and was about to throw them in the river when Swami Ramakrishna happened to pass by just then. Ramakrishna was shocked and found out that he was told by Vivekanand to do so. Ramakrishna used a four letter word for Vivekanand and said he would sort him out and told the lad to go back and put the idols where they belonged. To Vivekanand he sternly said that he was taking back his spiritual key from him and that he would only get it back just three days before he passed away. In the meantime, the lad came to be known as Latu Maharaj and became the closest disciple of Swami Ramakrishna.

2: Yuktanand Singh, MD (Michigan, USA), February 05, 2015, 8:12 AM.

Sangat Singh ji, you have reminded me of my teenage years, when I used to spend long hours at the library in Patiala. This is where I read 'The Gospel of Sri Ramkrishna'. This along with other books -- 'Anand Sarovar' (A biography of Baba Nand Singh ji) for example -- kindled in me an intense desire to see such a blessed soul. But no such person was in sight. I remember feeling so desperate. It took me a while, listening to and traveling with Sant Naranjan Singh ji, to realize that what we see and write is different. What really transpires between a master and a disciple is hidden, much more complex, and intense.

3: Sangat Singh (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), February 06, 2015, 12:04 PM.

Yuktanand Singh ji, talking of Anand Sarovar, you must remember S. Bhagat Singh ji (Rtd), Sessions Judge, who was the earliest to work on the biography of Baba Nand Singh. He used to publish a magazine that I avidly subscribed to and had each and every issue carefully collected. One day a gurmukh appeared and saw my collection and asked if he could borrow the pile. That was the last time I saw the gurmukh and my prized collection of magazines. I thought I would share this. Now I have a short notice in my library that reads: "I don't lend books to anyone as the books in my library are borrowed from others".

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The Way of The Sikh -
Letter & Spirit # 47"

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