The Ultimate Freedom - Experiencing, Expanding in the Sikh Ethos – An Intriguing Experience
Being a Sikh isn't limited to the outer - in fact outer is simply a way to the inner -experiencing the celestial being - the one being - the completeness - the celebrative celebration, the expansive expanse, the stillness, the fragrance and the totality thereof: A Samadhi till eternity, a bliss till the very end - if there is an end.
For a Sikh birth and death are simply dates - not in his control - he simply is focussed on creating a meaningful existence in that gap - between his birth and death dates. Hence for him death isn't something to be scared of, or thought of, it's simply a transitory experience - something which is there- so why worry. It's one of the many milestones he has to pass in his journey to achieving his ultimate celebration - his immersion in godliness, completeness.
A Sikh isn't an ordinary mortal- he is a being -consequently views everything from a more aware plane- death or separation for him is the disintegration of a physical body, a gross body not the subtle body- enroute to experiencing the divinity, across spectrum.
Subtle body is a casual body. a shade above the physical body- like varied light bulbs illuminating across- yet the electricity that powers them is one - the energy is one, that is manifesting in different forms. Bulbs have different bodies yet their energy source is one. Similarly, consciousness manifesting through us is one, yet its manifestations are two - gross and subtle.
For most, their experience is limited to gross, physical body. and this restricted experience is cause of all human misery and ignorance. But there are those who , even after going through the physical body stop at subtle , yet those who go beyond the subtle say godliness is one, soul is one, brahamna is one. Eko hai bhai eko hai, sahib mera eko hai.
Subtle body is an integrated seed consisting of our thoughts, desires, lusts; longings, experiences, knowledge. This body is instrumental in taking us on our continuing journey. Masters has exalted me, guided me to keep my desires solely out of compassion, for the good and well being of the mankind. However , one whose thoughts are all annihilated, whose passions are all vanished, whose desires have all disappeared, there isn't any more place where he wants to go, there isn't any reason left in him to go anywhere more, there is thus, no reason for him to take birth again. With the disappearance of any desire, the entire support ceases to exist. The day this desire is lost, I cease to live in the body and an endless journey towards the celestial infinite begins.
Hence no more birth, no more death, after that there is neither one, nor many. What remains after that cannot be counted in numbers; hence those who are aware, don't even say. Interestingly even to call God one is meaningless, when there is no way to follow it with two, when one can't count any further in the sequence of two and three, saying one is meaningful only as long as two, three and four exists." One' is significant only in the context of other numbers.
That's why those who know don't even say that God is one, they say He is non dual, he is not two - a fact very beautifully elucidated in 'Jaap' and 'Akal Ustat, buy Sahibe Kamaal.
Hence godliness is not two, there isn't any way where you can count godliness in terms of numbers. Even calling it 'one' we are attempting to count in terms of numbers, which isn't right. But to experience that 'one' is still a long haul for most of us. Amusingly we still are at the level of the gross body, of the body that endlessly takes multiple forms. When we enter this body, we find another body- the subtle one.
Going beyond the subtle one, we attain that which is not a body, that is bodiless - the soul - the being. The Khalsa. The integrated one. The seamless one. Not even the one. The immersed, celestial, fragrant being.
To this being, there is no past, its only the present- the now, the existing- which is contrary to most of us living - we simply are a product of our past consequently have no energy and vision in the present - in fact our present is only a reflection of our past and future too. Consequently past is my friend, philosopher and guide. I am simply a prisoner in the vastness of my prison.
Reflect: whatsoever we have known, we seldom forget. Interestingly nature has arranged for each of us to forget our past lives. Ponder, recalling the memoires of one month can drive us all crazy, let alone those of past lives. Even our recollection of the memoires of a single day will not let us survive. The whole arrangement of nature is such that it permits as many memories as my mind can bear. The rest are thrown into the dark abyss.
Reflect: The Master's always exalted us to move yonder, forward- create our own future, by working, contributing with integrity, compassion, bravery, equality. There isn't any thing to hold me back. No past, no memories, only now - living totally and in totality. And when I do so, my existence is of celebration, wherein every experience is expansive, across spectrum.
I thus am out of the blind repetition of the past - no doing it over nth times - not an unending process. Hence no burden of remembering the past, the past lives, consequently out of the cycle of endless rebirths and deaths- wherein I will die again and again - keep forgetting my actions , and the same thing will start over and over again. I will keep moving in circles like an ox at a water wheel.
Life thus is not sansara for me- which means a wheel, the spokes of which keep revolving, keep moving up and down, coming back to again and again where we started from. For a Sikh, life is moving on, exploring, enjoying, savouring new pastures, immersing in the fullness of what he has, striving continuously for improving the eco- system.
Not confined to sansara- the wheel, symbol of defeat, not victory march. Wheel depicts the life being defeated daily - coming back to the starting point again and again- like a person on the a rocking chair, the whole life being busy, yet reaches nowhere. A life of repetitive boredom, wherein I conveniently forget this fact and relieve the old motions with greater fervour, enthusiasm, once all over again. A wasteful and energy sapping effort indulged by most of us, at most times at most places.
Sikh - a being who is the change agent - created, for transforming the existing plane - to be better- moving from good to great - a explorer at heart - a Christopher Columbus who isn't afraid of charting new paths, experiencing new worlds – a painter, a dancer, an artist at heart- who lives his life with all humbleness, consciousness. For whom the Master Word is immersion – he dissolves himself in the now, creates himself anew each time, every time. Like a sapling that blooms wherever it is planted.
Wherever he stands darkness, ignorance is dispelled, life ushers in with conviction, realization, dance coupled with valour, bravery and certainty of making things happen, rather than waiting for things to happen. A non doer, whose aim is to be the change what one wants to see in others - he leads by example, a first mover, a being of seamless integration - man of wisdom coupled with a man of action.
For a Sikh the ultimate freedom is to follow with celebration the life which his Master had visualized for him - a life of glory, a life of action, a life of expansiveness and a life which redefines living.
ęCopyright Institute of Sikh Studies, 2015, All