Category: Commentary on Banis

  Significance of Nitnem Baanis Sikh religion is a way of life guided by the twin principles of Simran and Seva i.e. Remembrance of the Creator and Service of humanity. The two are linked in that we are to remember Divine virtues and commands and service is covered in the latter.   Nit-Nem is a […]

SGGS pp 2-3, Japji Paurris 8-11, Suniai.   There are five aids to spiritual advancement as stated in the first five Paurris  of Japji and elaborated thus:   Living by Hukam or Divine will: Japji Paurri 2. Remembering Divine virtues – Gaaveeai, Gaavai: Japji Paurri 3. Listening and keeping in mind – Suniai: Japji Paurris […]

SGGS p 2, Japji Paurri 7.   Note: Divine grace is a theme that runs throughout Japji. Paurri 6 states that nothing can be achieved without Divine grace. However human beings try to assert their capabilities to show that their achievement are by their virtues and efforts. The basic reason for not acknowledging the role […]

Japji Pauri 6   Note: In Pauri 5, we learnt that we should (gaaveeai = sing) praise virtues of the Almighty and (suneeai) listen to them (rakheeai bhaau) lovingly. We also learnt that one learns about the Master (gurmukh-i) from the teachings of the guru. The fifth Pauri ended with requesting the guru to give […]

SGGS pp 425-426, Aasa M: 3, Asttpadees 26-29. ੴ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ ॥ Ikoaʼnkār saṯgur parsāḏ. Invoking the One all-pervasive Creator who may be known (gurprsaad-i) with the true guru’s grace. ਆਸਾ ਮਹਲਾ ੩ ਅਸਟਪਦੀਆ ਘਰੁ ੮ ਕਾਫੀ ॥ Rāg āsā mėhlā 3 asatpaḏīā gẖar 8 kāfī. Baani of the third Guru in Raag Aasa, (astpadia) […]

  The first Pauri ended by saying that for one to be treated Sachiaar or truthful, s/he must carry out the tasks for which s/he was given human birth. This is ‘Hukam rajaai chalna’ living by Divine commands. The commands are not arbitrary but are according to the laws of nature. It amounts to leading […]

Japu, which means remembering or reciting again and again, is the name of the first composition in Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS), the Sikh holy book which has the status of the eternal living guru; its contents are also called Gurbani, the guru’s word.Japu reverently called Japji is preceded by a prologue called the Mool […]

Japji is the first composition in the Sikh Holy Scripture, Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS) whose contents are referred to as Gurbani meaning the Guru’s word. One themethat runs throughout is Divine grace. Japji is a composition of a prologue, 38 Pauris (stanzas) and a Slok (epilogue). Guru Nanak says in Pauri 6:ਜੇਤੀ ਸਿਰਠਿ ਉਪਾਈ […]

  ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥ ਪੂਰਾ ਪ੍ਰਭੁ ਆਰਾਧਿਆ ਪੂਰਾ ਜਾ ਕਾ ਨਾਉ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਪੂਰਾ ਪਾਇਆ ਪੂਰੇ ਕੇ ਗੁਨ ਗਾਉ ॥੧॥ Salok. Pūrā parabẖ ārāḏẖi▫ā pūrā jā kā nā▫o. Nānak pūrā pā▫i▫ā pūre ke gun gā▫o. ||1|| (Slok) prologue. One who (aaraadhia) remembers and invokes (poora prabh = omnipotent Master) the Almighty, (ja ka) whose (naau, naam) […]

Note: One of the themes that occur in Gurbani frequently is enlightenment of the mind or inner-self. The Creator is present but one cannot find it within because of the veil of ignorance which has been called “koorai paal” or wall of false-hoods in Pauri 1 of Japji. Elsewhere this has been explained as ਧਨ […]

Note: This Astpadi and its preceding Slok emphasize the Omnipresent and Omnipotent virtues of the Creator who is the protector of all. ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥ ਜੀਅ ਜੰਤ ਕੇ ਠਾਕੁਰਾ ਆਪੇ ਵਰਤਣਹਾਰ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਏਕੋ ਪਸਰਿਆ ਦੂਜਾ ਕਹ ਦ੍ਰਿਸਟਾਰ ॥੧॥ Salok. Jī▫a janṯ ke ṯẖākurā āpe varṯanhār. Nānak eko pasri▫ā ḏūjā kah ḏaristār. ||1|| (Slok) prologue. O […]

ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥ ਸਰਗੁਨ ਨਿਰਗੁਨ ਨਿਰੰਕਾਰ ਸੁੰਨ ਸਮਾਧੀ ਆਪਿ ॥ ਆਪਨ ਕੀਆ ਨਾਨਕਾ ਆਪੇ ਹੀ ਫਿਰਿ ਜਾਪਿ ॥੧॥ Salok. Sargun nirgun nirankār sunn samāḏẖī āp. Āpan kī▫ā nānkā āpe hī fir jāp. ||1|| (Slok) prologue. The Creator is (nirankaar) without any physical form. In that form IT is (nirgun) without attributes i.e. displays no material nature, […]

Note: This twentieth Astpadi of Sukhmani Sahib together with its preceding Slok describes the state of satisfaction of a person. S/he having searched for means of happiness realizes that real and lasting happiness lies in being being able to live free of wrong-doings, and thus have no apprehensions. Freedom from vices removes impediments to union […]

  ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥ ਸਾਥਿ ਨ ਚਾਲੈ ਬਿਨੁ ਭਜਨ ਬਿਖਿਆ ਸਗਲੀ ਛਾਰੁ ॥ ਹਰਿ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਕਮਾਵਨਾ ਨਾਨਕ ਇਹੁ ਧਨੁ ਸਾਰੁ ॥੧॥ Salok. Sāth na cẖālai bin bẖajan bikẖi▫ā saglī cẖẖār. Har har nām kamāvanā Nānak ih ḏẖan sār. ||1|| (Slok) prologue. Nothing (bin) except – the fruits of – (bhajan) remembering and living by Divine […]

Note: This eighteenth Astpadi of Sukhmani Sahib and its preceding Slok are on the subject of ‘Guru’. The Slok defines the Guru while the Astpadi describes the virtues of the guru and the benefits of following the guru’s teachings. The guru enlightens the mind to know about the Creator; the understanding about the Almighty is […]

Note: This seventeenth Astpadi of Sukhmani Sahib is about the Creator and the seekers/devotees. It emphasizes that it is with sincerity of purpose that the seeker can know the Master, the Truth. The final stanza encourages us to follow the true seeker. ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥ ਆਦਿ ਸਚੁ ਜੁਗਾਦਿ ਸਚੁ ॥ ਹੈ ਭਿ ਸਚੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਹੋਸੀ ਭਿ […]

Note: This sixteenth Astpadi of Sukhmani Sahib recounts some of the multifaceted Divine virtues and how they fascinate those who reflect on Divine nature. The fifth stanza which is on the subject of Naam, says how the whole creation exists supported by Naam and indicates that Naam is synonymous with the laws of nature or […]

ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥ ਸਰਬ ਕਲਾ ਭਰਪੂਰ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਬਿਰਥਾ ਜਾਨਨਹਾਰ ॥ ਜਾ ਕੈ ਸਿਮਰਨਿ ਉਧਰੀਐ ਨਾਨਕ ਤਿਸੁ ਬਲਿਹਾਰ ॥੧॥ Salok. Sarab kalā bẖarpūr parabẖ birthā jānanhār. Jā kai simran uḏẖrī▫ai Nānak ṯis balihār. ||1|| (Slok) prologue. (Prabh) the Almighty (jaananhaar) knows (birtha = pain, problems) the state of all creatures and also (bharpur = full of) has […]

  Note: This fourteenth Astpadi of Sukhmani Sahib highlights that there is only one Omnipotent Master, whom alone we should remember and look up to. ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥ ਤਜਹੁ ਸਿਆਨਪ ਸੁਰਿ ਜਨਹੁ ਸਿਮਰਹੁ ਹਰਿ ਹਰਿ ਰਾਇ ॥ ਏਕ ਆਸ ਹਰਿ ਮਨਿ ਰਖਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਦੂਖੁ ਭਰਮੁ ਭਉ ਜਾਇ ॥੧॥ Salok. Ŧajahu si▫ānap sur janhu simrahu har har […]

Note 1: This thirteenth Astpadi is about people who are not at ease with those leading spiritual lives; they find faults with and slander them. The Slok and Astpadi bring out that with this they pollute their own minds and suffer. Note 2: As the name indicates, each Astpadi has eight stanzas. In this Astpadi […]


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