Monday, August 11, 2008


112 SIMRAN- part 3In gurbani special emphasis has been placed on Amrit Vela (3am-6am) and the noisy and confusing vibrations of materialism in the worldly atmosphere are less. During amrit vela nature's environment is calm and especially beneficial for doing simran."Early in the morning utter the name and reflect upon GOD'Sgreatness." 2"Rise early in the morning, repeat the name and night and daymeditate on the Lord." 255"The pied cuckoo chirps in the ambrosial hours of the morningand then is his prayer heard in God's court." 1285"Rising early led God's saint visit my house like a guest.The name I hear, the name I amass and with the name I embracelove." 318"Rise early in the morning and bathe(in naam simran).Whilst sleeping remember your God." 1185By reading these lines from gurbani we often come to the conclusionand chanting the naam for awhile, we have completed our religiousobligation.But this is a mistake.Initially when we sit down to do simran our external tendenciesdistract our mind from the (actual) aim of simran and do not allowthe mind to calm down. If the mind begins to focus itself even for for a moment, the mind and the body, due to the relaxation thatfollows, becomes the victim of sleep. The time set aside for simranis spent in this "tug of war" state. We begin to assume that thiswrestling or "tug of war" of the mind is simran.It is true, our effort,pleading or labour if done with faith and love will bear fruits in time and slowly the mind will begin to settle down in simran.Our mind, over many previous births, has been incessantly doing the simran of materialism (worldly things) thereby causing thissimran of materialism to2pierce reside.diffusepermanently into the mind heart and the subconsciousIt becomes extremely difficult to change this ingrained influence of materialism or to coat it with the colour of spiritualism, because by living daily in this materialistic environment, we are infact strengthening this influence of materialism.In this way the materialistic side of our mind's balance .is becoming heavier all the time.In other words to remove the materialistic influence from the subconscious mind a half hearted attempt or effort to do simran at "amrit vela"ia not enough. In gurbani we have been encouraged to do simranwhile standing or sittingevery secondwith each breathwhile walking aboutin sleep or awake stateduring night or dayevery momentall the 24 hoursdailyincessantly (without a break).3"Standing and sitting,sleeping and waking, ever and ever, meditate on God". 379"All our lives through, we ought to remember God-whether standing,sleeping or waking." 101"Every moment and instant, ever remember the lord." 806"Whilst walking,sitting, sleeping and waking deliberate over the God's instruction in the mind." 1006"Standing, sitting sleeping and waking with every breath of mine I contemplate on God." 1298"Ever,ever dwell on Him day and night, whilst standing and sitting and at every breath and morse." 971"Any time is good for God's meditation." 1150"My dear ,remember the lord, day and night.Delay not even for a moment." 498This means that a gurmukh has to get up at amrit vela and meditate on the naam and then while sitting or standing he also has to meditate on the naam.By meditating while sitting or standing (meaning all the time) the colour of materialism will begin to neutralize itself and life will become more and more divine.In gurbani this aspect of simran has been very clearly explained."Whether standing,sitting or sleeping, meditate on the Lord.Walking along the path sing the praise of the master."386"Throughout the 8 watches contemplate on your Lord and with your soul and body ever remember Him."500"Throughout the eight watches of the day meditate on the Lord's name. It equals baths and ablutions at many places of pilgrimage."1340"Praise the Lord day and night.With every breath and morsel of yours meditate on Him."2804"Throughout the eight watches, I utter the Name of my Lord God.The Guru-God Himself is my savior." 1149"Night and day I always meditate on Him, who in an instant, saves all." 105"Make not a moments delay in contemplating over God,O my soul, who knows whether the mortal shall draw or draw not another breath." 540 It is most difficult to fulfil the aim of meditating sitting or standing (all the time) on God's Name because our mind, as a result of its accumulated past deeds is engrossed in the chores of maya (materialism) and is unable to do the Lord's simran. But with the help of the sadh sangat (society of illuminated souls) this difficult play can become easier.Concentration or attention of the mind is needed to ensure the success of each and every job.When attention is not given to a job, that job remains incomplete, bears no fruit or at most it becomes just a show (of effort).That is why, gurbani encourages us to do simran with our mind, body and soul."Joining the society of saints remember your Lord with your soul and body." 817"With single mindedness and one heart meditate on God with love and affection." 845"Sing the praise of the Lord, O friendly saints with alertness and single-mindedness." 295"In your mind dwell on the Lord's Name.Nanak thus you shall go to your home with honour." 283"Heartily apply yourself to God's meditation.Thus you shall obtain your heart desired fruit,O Nanak."285"By thought word and deed,I contemplate on the Lord's Name."916Our mind or our subconscious thinks and works under the accumulated influence of past deeds.These accumulated influences of past deeds the result of our simran or meditation on materialism- over numerous births, is most difficult to change. For example within the mind, attention,and the subconscious of an alcoholic, the influences of liquor take root and they manifest themselves in every aspect of his life.5In the same way if at some time we make and effort to do the divine simran, our previous potent materialistic influences, unknowingly distract our mind towards worldly chores and our simran remains but a show."My erring soul is entangled with mammon.What ever deeds I do while attached with avarice, with them all, I am binding down myself." 702 "O, Lord of the world and Master of the universe,this worldliness has made me forget Your feet.Even a bit of love for You wells not up in your slave.What can the poor slave do?"857"The man entangles in mammon (materialism) has forgotten the Lord's Name. 1427"Mammon has spread out its net and in it has place the bait.The avaricious bird is snared and cannot escape,O my mother." 50"In the love of worldly valuables man's mind attaches not to God.Loving another, the mortal suffers great sorrow in the yonder world." 1052"At times the mind soars high up and at times lit falls to the nether regions.The greedy mind remains not steady and searches for wealth in four directions."876It has been observed that when meditation on gurmantar"waheguru" is done via kirtan, some enthusiastic seekers in their zeal drift out of the kirtan tune and meditate loudly with powerful voices. By going out of tune, they disturb the rhythm of kirtan and prevent the rest of the sangat from fully deriving benefit.For this reason those wanting to do simran through kirtan together, must do so naturally and slowly to enable the whole sangat to derive benefit. Gurbani too supports this method.6"My soul with ease and calmness dwell upon God's name.Through the eight watches of the day, do think of the Lord and ever sing the praises of the world illuminator." 44"God's churn,churn you O my brother, steadily churn it,that the butter may not be lost."478"Ever bless my body with pure understanding, O Lord.In peace and poise Kabir utters the praise of God." 478"Hearing the Lord's excellences, I am easily drenched with them. By guru's instruction, I have automatically ut-tered the Lord's Name." 767"Under the guru's guidance, by remembering myLord God, man is easily absorbed in the True Master." 113"He who sings of the God with natural ease, becomesbright through the guru's fear and his dirt of ego departs." 121In order to reinforce simran or naam various methods are employed namely-through breath's rhythmeyes starring into eyesresting the hands on the headby rubbing ashcharms through mental poweryoga of doggednessyoga of knowledgetantric yogaetcBut according to gurmat the practice of simran can only be reinforced through the five beloved ones (by taking amrit from the panj piares).7 In the company of illuminated souls- (the plane of truth)- and the presence of the holy satguru, dynamic and divine vibrations prevail in the atmosphere. In this atmosphere, the simran of the naam, naturally entrenches itself into the deep recesses of the seekers hearts.The gurmantar which the gursikhs receive from the five beloved ones, becomes the seedling of the soul which naturallygerminatesbloomsblossomsbecomes strongerin the divine 'cave' of the spiritually elevated souls. In this way by the grace of the satguru spontaneously the revelation takes place"Through the word of the guru, God 'thunders'(reveals Himself)"To fix simran in the mind the company of the sadh sangat (spiritually elevated souls) is most helpful.Over the numerous births (that we have moved through), our mind has got so absorbed in the variety of worldly tastes that in order to experience these worldly tastes, the mind keeps searching foruniquenessnoveltyvarietydistinctnessdelicaciesWhen he cannot find enjoyment in all this he gets fed up and quietly slips out elsewhere."Worldliness affects in many ways." 182"Desires cannot be stilled by enjoying worldly pleasures."12988 "Fascinating is the marvelous picture of worldliness. Only a few understand this."485This is why our satguru,in order to distract our attention from the numerous worldly attractions tries to focus it on the incessant waves of God's sweet and wonderful praise and the continuous meditative practice found in the sad singed to enable it to move towards life's goals whose experience includes daily awakeningdivine-nessamazementbeautywondrousnessjoyousnesswonderful colours.In other words, within the sad singed, through the meditative practice of the word that is 'simran'glorious praiselove for the soul within silent lovethanks givingsupplicationsfear/faith (of God)pining (longing filled with emotion)and desires for spiritual illumination automatically well up within the hearts of the seekers. The practice of continuous repetition of the word during mediation is a very important aspect. It needs tremendous effort, patience and faith.9 It's like trying to enjoy eating something that is tasteless. But to calm a scattered mind so deeply bound in worldly desires, there is only one way-the continuous repetition of gurmantar (WAHEGURU)-""by focusing the undivided attention of the mind" Its importance and methodology in gurbani is stated as follows:-"Again and again utter the Lord's nameBy drinking the name nectar this soul and body are satisfied."286 "Remember,remember the name over and over again.Nanak it is the only support of the soul." 295"Utter the Name of the pervading Lord, a hundred thousand times." 194 "From one tongue ,let my tongue become a hundred thousand and let the hundred thousand become two million.With each tongue I would repeat the name of the Lord, hundreds of thousand times." 7 It has been observed that a large number of spiritual seekers regard the thoughtless state of the mind as the ultimate aim of simran or are satisfied with it as being the ultimate fulfillment.Such seekers make the mistake of doing unproductive repetition without an aim or desire.Proof of this point is given in gurbani as follows-"Everyone utters of God, the dispassionate God." 943"By perfectly (controlling) or (filling) the nine doors, one is accomplished, arriving at the tenth gate.He then sees the true Lord near and merges in Him.The True One is fully filling all hearts.The man unto whom the unmanifest gurbani becomes manifest,He comes to know the True Lord." 943-944"The illimitable Lord Master, he enshrines within his mind." 944The yogis call the non-activity,the thoughtless state of the mind - su-n or limitless su-n.The guru advised them that this thoughtless state of mind is beyond the nine doors.10It has to be refilled with divine virtues,emotions and love your soul feelings.In this state, in the presence of the sad singed, in place of emptiness, the beauteous and infinite tune of the Divine Word, the Divine Music from which divine bliss springs forth, can be heard. In this way intuitional knowledge of the word can be discovered and what ever element the shabad points at that can be experienced.On the other hand the joyless,thought less su-n state can only exist in a physical meditative state. In the awakened state this thought less state has no meaning and brings no benefits. It is generally argued that we remember God in our heart. What is the use of putting on a show by uttering with the mouth?But according to gurbani,doing simran with the tongue that is repeating it, is a must- it is mandatory."With your tongue utter God,God,God's Name." 1138"Nanak he who with his tongue utters God's Name, all his sins are washed off and he obtains the mint of millions of charities and ablutions and of various purifications and pieties." 706"By uttering it with the tongue, the sins are washed off."868"My God, my tongue sings your praise and sins committed by me, are washed off."1080"The tongue which utters not the Name ought to be cut bit by bit.When man forgets his Lord, the King, he declines day byday."1363"I deliberate over the guru's word within my mind.With my tongue, I utter the Name of the Lord of the woods."740"O my tongue sing your Lord's praise. Abandon all other relishes.Sublime is the savor of Lord's Name." 1220"By whose kindness you abide in comfort with the family, repeat His Name with your tongue for eight watches." 269"O my soul,with your mouth utter the Lord's GOD'S Name."52711 In reality we make a lot of enquiries about simran, do a lot of research to become knowledgeable, we participate in much intellectual activity, but in the practical sense, we do not do simran.This enquiry or research is done purelyto participate in intellectual discoursesto do preachingto appear virtuousto pander to ones egoto experience mental entertainment.In practice, the thought or enthusiasm of doing simran is purely superficial.This thought takes flight at the slightest obstacle or excuses."All the men utter God's Name but by such utterance man becomes not one with the Lord." 491"Kabir there is a difference in worshipping "Ram'. there is a point worthy of consideration. The same word everyone uses for "Dasrath's son and the same word for the Wondrous Lord." 1374 "Hardly anyone is your slave,O Lord.Forsaking lust,wrath,avarice and worldly attachment,he sees the Lord's Feet." 1123 "A gursikh accepts the teachings of the guru and is able to bear the unbearable.Rare are those people who can worship thus."Bhai Gurdas Var 40/15That is why, in gurbani doing simran is regarded as"It is a very difficult to repeat the True Name.""Being engaged in a joyless task"But in the lofty and pure sublime aura of the spiritual 'retreat' in the form of the sad singed, the process of simran becomes simple and natural. For this reason the satguru has counselled us"Meet the sad singed (company of spiritually awakened souls) and repeat only the Name." Rahraas12 "Join the society of saints and contemplate on the Lord of Wealth.Thus from a sinner you shall be holy."631"At every breath, I remember my Lord and I ever abide in the society of saints.God's Name is my sole support and wealth. "From it alone Nanak obtains delight." 533 "Remember the True Lord o brother.In the saint's society, man obtains lasting peace and forgets not the Lord ever." 616"Lord's meditation is obtained in the saint's society. All the wealth, o Nanak, are in God's love." 262"O saints, meditate on Lord God, the world cherisher.Meeting with the saint's society, remember the Lord's Name that your effort bears fruits."