Episodes From lives of the Gurus
The Editorial Board of the Abstracts of Sikh Studies had decided to serialize the book “Parchian Sewadas” from Jan-March 2010 issue of the Abstracts of Sikh Studies. Due to special issues in Oct-Dec 2010, Jan-March 2011 and April-June 2011, it did not appear. However, on the demand of our readers we have revived the series from this issue. – Editor
Story Of The Fourth Mahal
SWEETNESS AND HUMILITY
Once Guru Ram Das ji met Sri Chand ji. When they were by themselves Sri Chand ji casually said, “You have grown your beard so long.” “O kind Sir, I have done this to dust your holy feet. This is the only purpose of growing a long beard: There is no other purpose,” said Guru Ram Das. “Now I understand. It is through such sweet talk and humility, that you won title to the throne of guruship. lsn’t it so?” remarked Sri Chand, greatly pleased.(4)
Story Of The Fifth Mahal
GURU ARJUN PAYS HOMAGE TO BHAGATS
Once Guru Arjan Said, “All my bani is dedicated to Guru Nanak. I will dedicate some bani to Bhagats also.” Then the Guru dedicated some stanzas to Bhagats. Though it was his bani, the reference line contained the name of Bhagats’. Here is one of such hymns in the Gauri measure dedicated to Kabir:
Gauri Mahala 5
‘Such is the wonder that Kabir beheld: People churn water under the delusion of curd.
The donkey feeding on green shoots, Thereafter has hearty laughter, then brays and dies.
There is a mad he-buffalo that is intractable Leaping while grazing, and ultimately going under the earth.
Saith Kabir : Now this wonder has become manifest,
That the sheep is being sucked by the lamb.
By Divine contemplation has such realization to me appeared:
Saith Kabir: By the Master’s guidance has this enlightenment come.’
Another two hymns were dedicated to Kabir in the Bhairo measure:
Bhairo Mahala 5
‘I observe neither fasting nor the ritual of the Ramadan month.
Him I serve who at the last shall save.
The Lord of the universe of the Hindus, and Allah to me are one.
From Hindus and Muhammadans have I broken free.
I perform neither Kaaba pilgrimage nor at sacred places worship.
One sole Lord I serve, and no other.
I perform neither Hindu worship nor namaaz.
To the Sole Formless Lord in my heart I bow.
We neither are Hindus nor Musalmans.
Our body and life is Allah-Rama’s,
Thus has Kabir preached:
By contact with the Preceptor, the Lord, have we realized.’
The second hymn in the Bhairo measure is as follows;
‘Those who call a stone their God,
Wasted is their devotion.
Our Lord to us ever speaks;
To all creation largesse He grants.
The ignorant man knows not, God abides within;
Attached to delusion his mind in thongs he puts.
The stone neither speaks nor can grant any boon
Hollow is such ritual, fruitless such service.
If the corpse in filth be thrown,
What would it then lose?
Saith Kabir, making loud proclamation:
Thou uncouth, understand and behold,
Many homes by duality are ruined.
God’s devotees ever are at peace.’
The Guru also dedicated one hymn to Sheikh Farid in the Asa Measure:
Asa Mahala 5
‘Those alone are true devotees whose heart with God is sincerely in love:
The ones whose heart is belied by their tongue are known to be inconstant.
The True devotees-soaked in God’s love are ever in ecstasy of realization;
Those forgetful of the holy Name are a burden on earth.
Those that He to Himself attached, are the true devotees.
Blessed is the mother that bore them; fruitful their life.
Thou art the Cherisher-Unfathomable, Inaccesible, Limitless;
I kiss the feet of those as the holy Truth have realized.
Lord! In Thee I seek shelter. Thou the Bestower of forgiveness.
Grant to Sheikh Farid the alms of Thy devotion.’
A hymn was dedicated to Dhanna Bhagat in the Asa measure:
Asa Mahala 5
‘In the Lord was Namdev’s heart deeply absorbed: So that the dyer worth half a farthing was immensely exalted.
Kabir, discarding weaving and carding yarn,
Into love of God’s feet was absorbed: The low-caste weaver thus became store of merit.
Ravi Das who carried carcases always, his worldliness discarded.
In holy company becoming prominent, the Divine sight he beheld.
Sain the barber ran errands, as known to all: The lord in his heart took abode, among the saints was he counted.
Listening to such cases, the poor Jat Dhanna too in devotion engaged.
The Lord to him manifested Himself- Such was Dhanna’s good fortune.’
One hymn was dedicated to Sur Das Ji in the Sarang measure:
‘God’s devotees with Him alone abide. Body and mind and all else to Him have they dedicated, In spontaneous joy by music Divine intoxicated. At sight of the Lord are they relieved of evil, All boons have achieved. Those discarding the beauteous Lord, seeking aught else, Are like leeches sucking leper’s blood. Sur Das grasped the Lord in his heart, Was granted the joy of hereafter.’(5)
ęCopyright Institute of Sikh Studies, 2011, All