Thursday, October 20, 2016



Not many people know that apart from being a saint , Warrior , Poet , Social reformer ,an enlightened being , Guru Gobind Singh Ji ( 1666-1708 ) was an exceptionally gifted Musician (instrumentalists) . He would play and play for hours on TAUS ( A string based musical instrument made to look like Taa-Voos or Peacock ) and DILRUBA (Again a  string based musical instrument ).

As Poet , Guru Gobind Singh ji has written innumerable verses . He had profound knowledge of Hindi , Brij-Bhasha , Sanskrit , Persian and Punjabi. I shall not speak about all those compilations today . But surely I shall say something about his Shabads that are also included in Dasham Granth .
Poet Sahir Ludhianavi held Guruji in highest esteem . He was much influenced by the towering thoughts emerging from his Shabads . Personally he remembered almost all these soulful and moving shabads by heart . Sahir's song “ Mun Re Tu Kaahe na Dheer Dhare “ is inspired by a shabad of Guru Gobind singh Ji . Again Sahir Ludhianavi 's song "Sansaar se Bhaage phirtay ho Bhagwan ko kya tum Paaogay" is inspired by Guru Gobind Singh ji's Concept of sanyaasa ( Renunciation) in Grihista ( Household)..
In Praise of Guru Gobind Singh ji , Punjabi Poet Shiv Batalvai writes ..

“ Me kis hanju da diwaa baal ke teri Aarti lawaan”
(out of which tear drop should I light a lamp and perform your Aarti )

In his poem “ Guru Gobind singh “ Gurudev Tagore writes ..

“So I wander alone on the Banks of jamuna ,
On these unsurmountable mountains ,
I am growing into perfection ,
In the lap of these stones ,
I am tuning my inspirational song
To the Music of the river ,
I am preparing my mind and spirit ,
For the great challenge and action .

Ah when shall I be to proclaim
Without Hesitation “ I have completed my Mission .“
Come one , Come All, Follow me .
The Guru Gives you the Call ,
From the depths of my inspired soul I say ,
Awake My whole country , Awake , Arise .”

( The Background of this Poem of Tagore Translated from Bengali By Dr Trilochan Singh is Poanta sahib area situated on the banks of River jamuna . Guru Ji stayed at Poanta sahib and wrote about 3000 poems . He fought many Battles in this area . He also gave the first call for unity and integrity of India from this place . )
I quote my six favourite shabads composed by Guru Gobind singh ji ..

(1) Mitter Pyaare Nu 
(2) Deho Shiva Var Mohe Aiho
(3) Re Mun Ih Bidh Jog Kamaao 
(4) Prabh Ju Tokeh Laaj Hamaari 
(5) Teerath Kot Kiye Ashnaan 
(6) Re Mun Aiso Kar Sanyaasa

Today , I shall take up the last shabad from the above list for detailed discussion .



Hindus believe that Every man is ideally expected to go through four stages in his life . These are "Brahmacharya" or the Student Stage , "Grihastha" or the Householder Stage, "Vanaprastha" or the intermediary stage of withdrawing by transferring duties and responsibilities to Children and finally "Sanyaasa" or renunciation and total devotion to creator by moving away from the family .
Sanyaasa is a self imposed Exile . A Sanyaasi neither complains nor expects anything from others . He surrenders to the will of the creator and fate . Ordinarily a sanyaasi ( Renunciant ) dons specific coloured clothes , Moves away from the Household , keeps himself Busy in penance and self negation. He devotes all his time and energy to Meditation for ultimate Moksha ( spiritual Liberation) . In olden days , a sanyaasi would move to Forests , eats fruits , drink Milk and gradually reduce his daily intake of food so that the body would lighten up and eventually fall . The Jain Monks and Buddhists also followed this type of Sanyaasa .Vedic period Sanyaasis also followed this Code of conduct.


In the shabad under reference , Guru Gobind singh ji lays more stress on internal sanyaasa . The outer aspect consists of some codes that all renunciants follow while the internal Sanyaasa consists of attitude and mind’s restraint . 

Through Internal Sanyaasa , a sanyaasi needs to improve concentration and Renunciation of desires . The internal Sanyaasa helps a Man to Move towards Non Violence , Truthfulness , Compassion , Forgiveness ,Non Possession , Humility , Surrender, Devotion . He turns free from ego , Pride , Arrogance , Lust , Greed and Anger . Even a householder can be an Internal sanyaasi even if he lives in his House. He just needs to feel himself like an exile living in Forest . A nature’s cradle or a forest that is cut off from all material temptation of existence .

Guru Gobind Singh Ji does not recommend Wearing Orange coloured robes or applying ash on the body. Should a Sanyaasi apply anything on his Body , It is the name of the creator alone . For any onlooker , The Sanyaasi must appear as an embodiment of NAM JAPAA ( recitation of the name of the creator ).
For Guru Gobind Singh Ji , the purpose of sanyaasa is to withdraw from outer world and move to inner space for self purification so as to become a PARAM PURUSHA or PARAM PURUKH . Guru Gobind singh ji believes that a sanyasi need not keep long nails or matted hair . He believes that a sanyaasi should lead an active life but remain untouched and untainted by it.

A sanyaasa is a state of being rather than Doing. And eventually a Sanyaasi has to become true embodiment of a divine soul (Mahatma ).

Thus a true Sanyaasi is he who throws down any and every personal identity whatsoever and wherever he remains ; Be it a forest or in his Own Grihisata ( Household ) .

Now the shabad and my simple English rendering ..

Ban se sadan Sabhaai kari Samjhoh 
Mun He Maahi Udaasa 
……………………………Re Mun Aisso kar sanyaasa …
Jatt Ki Jatta Jog Ko Majjanu
Nem ke Nakhan Badaao..
Gyaan Guru Aatam Updesho
Naam Bhabhoot Lagaao..

……… Re Mun Aisso kar sanyaasa
Alap ahaar sulap Si Nindra 
Dayaa Chhemaa Tan Preet 
Seel Santokh sadaa Nir -mohibo 
Hoyiiho Tigun Ateet
……Re Mun Aisso kar sanyaasa

Kaam Krodh Hankaar Lobh Hath 
Moh Na Mun So Laavaai 
Tab Hi Aatam tat Ko Darse 
Param Purukh Kah Paavaai
…. Re Mun Aisso kar sanyaasa
( Guru Gobind singh Ji )

Treat your Home as a Forest in your exile ,
And remain there Unattached ..
……..O Mind , Let you Practice Renunciation this way …

Treat Your Continence as your matted hair , 
Treat Your Ablution ( cleanliness ) as your Yoga 
Treat your Daily Observances as your long nails ,
…. O Mind , Let you Practice Renunciation this way …

Let your Knowledge be your Guide in your learning,
Let you Smear the ash of Naam Japaa ( recitation of the name of the Creator ) on your Body .
…… O Mind , Let you Practice Renunciation this way …

Eat less , Sleep less , 
Fill Your Heart with Mercy , Forgiveness 
Practice Silence and contentment and remain 
free from Other three Varna Ashrams .
…. O Mind , Let you Practice Renunciation this way …

Away be from lust .Anger , Greed , assertion and obsession 
Alone then you may envisage supreme spirit
And move to become a supreme being.
….. O Mind , Let you Practice Renunciation this way …

I am Informed that when S. Mohinder selected Asha Bhonsle to sing this shabad for his movie ” NANAK NAAM JAHAAZ HAI” , Asha ji was initially reluctant . And When S Mohinder ( Who composed the Music for this Shabad) made the meaning of the words known to her , she is reported to have asked for a photograph of Guru Gobind Singh ji for her daily  worship .

And S Mohinder's choice  proved ideal and perfect for this Shabad  .

So Long so much ……

( Autar Mota )

The Taus is a bowed instrument known for its deep, mellow sound. It has four main strings and twenty frets, which are the keys to the notes. Making the Taus requires great craftsmanship, as it is carved from a single piece of wood. This instrument was also udsed later in performance of Shabad Kirtan by Raagis .

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