A person goes through the following four stages to complete his spiritual journey on this Earth and merge back with his Creator.
1) Bairaag (Realisation/Awareness/Awakening.)
2) Jagiasa (Longing)
3) Gian (Spiritual Knowledge)
4) Avastha (State of mind of PEACE, HAPPINESS, JOY and BLISS, PHJB)
The journey begins with Bairaag. Guruji says in Gurbani:
Jin kinai paaeiaa SADH SANGGATI poorai bhaag BAIRAAG
Whosoever has reached the Lord has done so through Bhairaag and the help of the Sadh Sanggat.
Why are these two very necessary? Bhairag is the AWAKENING of the mind that is necessary to begin the journey. Sadh sanggat is the place where this awakening can happen because the message of the Guru has the power to stimulate the sleeping mind.
Sleeping mind actually means an ignorant mind. An ignorant mind is one that is unaware of its main objective in life and spends the entire life in darkness.
We spend many hours of our lives going to the Gurdwaras and performing many rituals like attending paths and kirtan sessions, going for pilgrimages, giving donations etc but many of us are clueless as to why we are doing it. We perform all the rituals without having a clear goal / objective as to why we are doing it.
This is very different from our worldly goals. There, we are very clear. We know that little child we are sending to school today must one day succeed and become a lawyer or a doctor or an engineer, etc.
But when it comes to religion, we are not clear what is the purpose. Most of us think Gurdwaras are places to ask for things.
We are rarely told that our focus always has to be on our own minds. As a result of ignorance, we don’t do introspection of ourselves to see whether there has been any improvement / change / transformation of our minds although we have spent our entire lives doing path/ kirtan, etc.
The SHABAD on Pg 831 is to awaken us from our slumber.
Jaa mai bhajan Raam ko naahee
Thih Nar janam akaarath khoeiaa
Meaning: If you have not developed any love and devotion for God then essentially you have wasted all your life in meaningless pursuits.
Theerath karai brath fun raakhai neh manoa bas jaa ko.
Meaning: You have gone to theeraths and bathe, kept fasts, etc, but your mind is still not in your control and is not transformed. All your practices have born no fruit.
Jaisae paahan jal meh raakhiou bhaedhai naahi thih paanee.
Paahan means a stone. Jal means water. Meaning: Guruji says just as a stone thrown in water remains unaffected by the water, you are also like that. You do many things but nothing really transforms your thought processes. They are just as negative as ever.
A human being who has no love and devotion for the Creator is just like a stone which never changes despite remaining in water for a long time.
A sensitive mind hears the Gurus Shabad and gets affected by it and decides to do something about it. If this happens the journey has begun.
Surinder Kaur Sohan Singh is a Malaysia-based Gurbani enthusiast. This is an edited version of her regular articles shared within a circle of fellow Sikhi seekers. The articles appear on Mondays and Thursdays.
* This is the opinion of the writer, organisation or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Asia Samachar.
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Day 24: Falling prey to maa-ei-aa (Asia Samachar, 15 Oct 2018)
Day 23: Here comes the storm of spiritual wisdom (Asia Samachar, 11 Oct 2018)
Day 22: The offering that God expects from us (Asia Samachar, 8 Oct 2018)