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The Fragrance of Bhai Vir Singh - Rana Surat Singh

Canto 30: Satsang Practice

Monday
,
5
December
2022

The Fragrance of Bhai Vir Singh - Rana Surat Singh

Canto 30: Satsang Practice

Monday
,
5
December
2022
Sikhism
Bhai Vir Singh
Sikh History
Poetry
⟵ Back to articles

The Fragrance of Bhai Vir Singh - Rana Surat Singh

Canto 30: Satsang Practice

Monday
,
5
December
2022

Bhai Vir Singh’s poem “Rana Surat Singh” unveils the mysteries of mystical love via 14,270 lines of verse in thirty-five cantos. The poem artistically presents a passionate vision of a world beyond the divisions of time and space.

Bhai Vir Singh’s poem “Rana Surat Singh” unveils the mysteries of mystical love via 14,270 lines of verse in thirty-five cantos. The poem artistically presents a passionate vision of a world beyond the divisions of time and space.

Introduction

What do you call that abundance that showers upon you when you least expect it?

I call it Grace.
And therefore,
The head bows intuitively.
The tears flow unashamedly.

For years I have struggled to understand the principle of isnan (bathing-cleansing-reflection). Isnan, which is inextricably joined as one with Nam (Divine-Identification-Introspection) and dan (giving-philanthropy). I have conferred with many, listened to nearly every discourse that mentioned the word isnan, and still have walked away empty.

Yet, my desire to understand isnan never waned. I accepted in Hukam (Command) that the answer would reveal itself when I could grasp it. So I waited.

At the beginning of the year, I brought a copy of “Rana Surat Singh” to my bedroom and began reading. It is a 14,000-plus-line dense epic poem penned by Bhai Sahib Bhai Vir Singh, the man I reverently call my Pita ji.

Reading the poem has been a struggle. The language is rich, and the concepts are challenging, yet it holds me. I read every verse multiple times to glean understanding.

There are nights when my pillow is soaked with tears; there are nights that leave me in awe, and then there are nights that leave me with an intense longing to experience the depth of love emanating from Rani Raj Kaur.

My emotions seesaw, yet I have never felt steadier.
I feel cradled.
I feel protected.
I feel the warmth of the shawl of Gurbani (Infinite-Wisdom in the Guru Granth Sahib).

“Rana Surat Singh” is a plodding read. Let no one tell you otherwise. Every line reveals deep insights. Yet, simultaneously, it is so vivid that I can feel every step the Rani takes. Her anguish has somehow become my anguish. I am living and breathing her.

I felt drawn to share my newfound understanding of isnan. However, when I began to write, I realized I would not do it justice in my envisioned format. I needed to set the stage for this revelation to occur naturally, as it did for me. I needed the reader to feel the pain and desperation of Rani Raj Kaur. After all, it is her journey—or is it?

Bhai Vir Singh’s brother, Dr. Balbir Singh, writes, “…When Bhai Vir Singh was thinking about creating ‘Rana Surat Singh,’ the Sikh community was widowed. The last Maharaja, Dalip Singh, had breathed his last. The entire Panjabi state was in mourning, consequently steeped in superstition and idol worship. How could the health of the community be restored? What direction to overcome superstition and idol worship?” – Khalsa Samachar, July 7-11, 2011

About the Poem

Love is such a vibration that makes hearts miss beats. The capacity of love is such that it can transport one from the visible world to an invisible love. So powerful is this attraction that this world seems a mere reflection. This dynamic chemistry is like a life-transforming power. It seems part of its inherently magical behavior to drift from form to formless and back again.

The essence of love infuses the heart. Its ascending force thrusts toward its invisible Source, though it remains equally prevalent in this world. Hence, love takes multiple forms. The more selfless love is, the higher its reach.

Hearts know not which heart to connect to.
The meeting of the hearts is the Creator’s magic.
These interconnected hearts march to a different tune.
This form of love is real as well as mystical.

The poem “Rana Surat Singh” unveils this mystical love’s mysteries via 14,270 lines of verse in thirty-five cantos. Mystical love is helical and circular in its workings. The poem artistically presents a passionate vision of a world beyond the divisions of time and space. It is a lustrous and extensive recollection written by the one who has gazed upon the innermost mystery of a mystical experience.

The poem begins with the hero’s death, Rana (King) Surat Singh, and its profound and shattering effect on his young widow, the Rani (Queen) Raj Kaur. At the onset of the poem, the poet makes us aware that the Rani’s love for the Rana was at a physical level. So immersed was the Rani in her love for the Rana that it blinded her to his illuminated and enlightened self. As much as the Rana wanted her to be a part of his spiritual journey, the Rani could not see him beyond his physical self.

As we become immersed in the poem, we witness the transformation of her physical yearnings into spiritual ones. We journey with her through the various stages of her inner development, from the Realm of Principle to the Realms of Knowledge, Effort, Grace, and Eternity—the final abode. Guided by a Guru-inspired being, the Rani is introduced to the “Love Path.”

This creative work of art depicts human emotions in myriad moods, peaking at intense pain and tension moments. These are universal emotions experienced when a loved one is taken away by death in the prime of life. Darkness descends. Life loses its meaning—despair, hopelessness, and defeat enter. The poem’s descriptive power is so captivating that we become partners in the misery of the suffering Rani. At times the burden becomes so unbearable that we can barely breathe. The poet’s words weave their magic, and we are no longer onlookers but become a part of it. Rani’s tragedy is our tragedy. Her loss is our loss.  

“Rana Surat Singh” is impossible to translate as poetry. The poet’s language map is vast and inspired by the words and phrases emanating from the Guru Granth Sahib. His words hold multi-layered meanings whose depth no translation can capture. I have attempted to translate Cantos Thirty, Thirty-One, and Thirty-Two into poetic prose while maintaining their mystical elements.

Translating this work has brought me immense joy and growth. Bhai Sahib Bhai Vir Singh has taken me “from crayons to perfume,” and I am in his debt for that and much more.

Many will say that I have not done justice to his work, and they are right. I apologize profusely. Translating is an incomplete process, and this translation has been done by one who confesses to being a “work in progress.”

Canto 30

Satsang-Practice (ਸਤਿਸੰਗ-ਸਾਧਨ)


Now came one beautiful night. The clouds in the sky floated far away. The moon was high in the sky. The watchman struck the clock announcing the hour.

Startled, the beautiful Rani wakes up and goes to wake up her faithful companion, “Lovely Radha, the hour has struck. Let’s go to the Beloved’s Court to find the Beloved. Let’s graciously accept all the offerings from the Court, yet let us not leave until the gift of experience (sight, darshan - ਦਰਸ਼ਨ). Let’s continuously plead day and night without sadness. At some point, Beloved will hear our plea.”

The clouds are disappearing.
The moon is shining.
Everything is glowing.

“Let’s go quickly. The time is right. Get me the water to cleanse my body. I don’t know how to cleanse the mind. The mind can only be cleansed at the true Washerman’s place.”

The Rani bathes, wears fresh clothes, and prays with folded hands. Then she begins to walk toward the ocean-court like a salt-puppet. The ocean-court is the cave where the devout assemble in satsang (the company of truth-oriented beings, ਸਤਿਸੰਗ).

Either the ocean will keep her? Or it will dissolve her, and she will take the form of the ocean. Let’s witness what happens in this undertaking.

The Rani, along with her faithful companion Radha, proceed to the secret back door of the palace.

The path is hidden.
It is off the beaten track.
Moonlight aids Rani’s path.

The earth seems to know where they are going to place their feet. Within minutes, they find the secret door and leave effortlessly. What was once difficult has become easy now.

Just as the North Star appears dim amongst other stars at times but remains steadfast in its place, so is Rani Raj Kaur firm in her love. She does not waver. Even though the entire world has been telling her not to go down this path and to leave this love, this beautiful woman immersed in eternal love does not leave this path and is not afraid of dying.

She is of high status, but she assumes a lowly, humble position and enters the satsang of the elders. Though she is young, the love in her heart is steadfast and eternal. She seeks satsang to learn about seva (service) and how to perform it.

Seva is the first step for those seeking satsang. It is the starting point of one’s journey into the spiritual world. It is the principal trait in the path towards good deeds. It is through seva that good deeds become fruitful. When love enters seva, it enhances life. Seva becomes ten-fold when the ego leaves. Through love immersed seva, the unattainable from the Giver is attained.

However, Radha has made no effort to earn the privilege of being in satsang. She does not know what happens in a satsang. She is a servant from the palace, serving the Rani. However, her utter love and devotion to the Rani are selfless, making her seva successful; therefore, she has reached this place.

The effort needed for seva is difficult, but that effort does not go unrewarded. That effort gets to the right place on its own. Radha performed this seva effortlessly, and she is now sitting with her mistress in the satsang. They had come numerous times before to serve whatever was assigned to them. They came here as companions.  

Today’s satsang is being led by the senior-most person in charge. His words flow like pearls. Addressing the Rani, he says, “You are Guru’s daughter of love; you are ready to do what needs to be done now. So far, whatever you have done, and you have done a lot, you have done it beautifully, and that has been accepted. You have sunk many times, but you have also risen to experience the magnificence of love. You are the embodiment of devoted love. However, you have one doubt left; if you leave that doubt, you will become complete like a full moon.”

The Rani listens with great respect and says, “O’ Guru-inspired leader of this satsang, I have many doubts. With reverence, I beseech you, don’t count my flaws, my doubts, forgive them. I do not need to be complete; even if I remain incomplete, I will not be lacking anything. There is one strong desire in me if you can fulfill that. Help me meet my Rana, my husband, my beloved.”

She bows with tearful eyes and continues, “You are like my father; in the name of Guru Gobind Singh, I beseech you, let me just once have a glimpse of my husband. I will cut myself into pieces and offer myself to you. You can then put me in the sacrificial fire. All I long for is a glimpse of him.”

On hearing her heart-wrenching plea, tears of compassion flow from the eyes of the entire congregation; their hearts tremble. Witnessing the depth and intensity of her love, they think, “This is love. Great is her mind; great is her body.”

The Rani again beseeches the congregation with folded hands, “I am full of flaws; please overlook them and help me meet my Rana, my husband, my beloved. Remove my inner dirt like water removes dirt. Like rain washes dirt off trees, please wash my dirt which is the curtain between my husband and myself. You all have loved and respected him. His ignorant wife pleads at your door, seeking a glimpse of him. Please help me. I am a weak separated woman who is absorbed in her husband’s love. Have mercy and grant me the vision of my husband. I will continue pleading at your door until I meet him.” Her voice wanes as she faints.

The elevated congregation, recognizing her love’s intensity and purity, utter, “Vahiguru, Vahiguru! You are great for creating her.” They look at each other and say, “Is there any end to her love? Who has taught her to love with such reverence and devotion? Her love is so profound; what advice can we give her? May Guru guide us.”

Thinking deeply on this, the eyes of the congregation mist. Every part of their bodies trembles from within. As they experience these sensations, new-founded respect for the depth of Rani’s love enters them, enabling them to feel her pain. What would the foolish people say about this love? They will not understand it. And the intelligent ones will go silent. The garden of Sikhi glows like diamonds for those who live absorbed in the love of the Beloved.

In awe of the intensity of her love, they wonder what guidance they can give her. Gently, they revive her and choose the wisest Guru-inspired being to guide her.  

After a few moments, the Rani gets up and begs, “As a gardener, graft the plants, graft me to my beloved. He is alive; regenerate me with him.”

The Guru-inspired being, focusing his full attention on her and keeping the Teachings in mind, gently says, “Rani Raj, don’t lose your composure. The time of doubt and loneliness is over; now is the time for preparedness. In satsang lies the way for you to meet. It is the place to connect, for your sorrow to depart, and to prepare you for the meeting. In humility, keep this desire and gratitude, respect, and hope.”

These words enter Rani’s heart and absorb her. Immersed in this state, she joins her palms and pleas, “I am deeply grateful to the one who has given me this message. I will cut myself into pieces and sacrifice myself to the one whose tongue today conveyed the message that I will meet my beloved.

“I am just a naive, innocent woman who knows nothing. I don’t know how to prepare. I have made no effort nor loved? I have only longed day and night to meet my beloved. The longing that is flowing day and night is beyond my control. Tell me, how should I prepare so that I can be worthy to meet my loving husband? I am totally useless; you need to prepare me.”

Now “Hope” arrives. It enters the Rani. In her heart, the remembrance of her husband enters. However, it does not overwhelm her with happiness. The desire to meet him increases many folds making her feel good. Simultaneously, satisfaction enters her. “Hope” gives her that satisfaction.

Destiny dropped the human from the ethers to the earth. Along with the human, destiny also dropped the string of “Hope.” The human tightly held on to this string of “Hope” and attached it to itself. “Hope” tied the human heart with the string and kept it intact. “Hope” became the support and an inseparable part of the human heart. If “Hope” wasn’t there, the heart would break whether the human is richer than the richest or the bravest of the brave when “Hope” leaves the heartbreaks. When “Hope” is with the human, the human is human.

Understand the miracle of “Hope.” Bitter medication becomes sweet like honey with a drop of “Hope.” The surgeon’s knife becomes bearable with “Hope.” In poverty and dependence, “Hope” supports the heart. When disappointment clutches and life becomes bitter, “Hope” blows new energy. “Hope” enlightens the mind and strengthens the body. Strength is in “Hope,” not in hopelessness. “Hope” is the string in the kite of love. It is the balm for broken hearts and rejuvenates those who have fallen by the wayside. “Hope” is like a street between this world and the next. For those lovers who cannot bear the separation, “Hope” supports them to continue.

This “Hope” tied the heart of this lover and brought her comfort, increasing her desire to meet her husband. With respect, hope and reverence, she says, “O’ Sage, make me meet my husband.”

In a thoughtful tone, the Guru-inspired being says, “Listen, O’Rani. Your right is complete. You have legitimately earned the right to become a part of the satsang. Open your palms and take the keys to all the treasures, the rubies, and the diamonds. This treasure belongs to the Sovereign. It has been kept for you. Now you have become worthy of getting these keys. The entire congregation agrees with this. Satguru ((Eternal-Guru, ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ) has allowed me to give you the keys, which are not hidden. However, one cannot see them because of darkness, or the light is too bright, like the sun’s brightness, making it impossible to see. Similarly, this secret is not hidden but is not visible because of its brightness.”

With folded hands, tear-filled eyes, and head bowed, she says, “This Gift is because of your grace. I am quite unworthy. When one enters the sanctuary, the sanctuary’s Owner always protects and keeps one’s honor. The Gift of the Beloved is an amazing Gift! I am fortunate that I will be receiving it. You are like my father; you are the elder of the satsang; when I fall and make mistakes, please forgive me for the sake of the Rana.

“Beloved Owner has the keys to the Kingdom. They look worthy in the hands of the Sovereign. I look good just serving. I do not need to get the keys. The Sovereign needs to take care of the keys. The Sovereign needs to take care of its own treasure. May I not be given this difficult work? All I need to do is serve at my husband’s feet.

“O’ You swan-like being! The Gift belongs to the Giver. If I get this Gift, where will I keep it? Fortunate is your tongue telling me that I will get this Gift.”

On hearing her words of intense longing, the Guru-inspired being thinks deeply and then says, “O’ Rani, what they say is true:

ਇਸਤ੍ਰੀ ਰੂਪ ਚੇਰੀ ਕੀ ਨਿਆਈ ਸੋਭ ਨਹੀ ਬਿਨੁ ਭਰਤਾਰੇ ॥੧॥

Female-like, maiden-slave-like, no beauty, without Husband-Divine. 1
     Guru Granth Sahib 1267


“We love the gifts, and we forget the Giver. Loving the gifts without loving the Giver is unacceptable. If the Giver begins to reside within the heart, loving the gifts is acceptable.  

“The love residing in you is endless. You are a completely fortunate woman. Now listen to my words; the Gift that has been kept here for you is how you will go to your husband’s ‘country.’

ਖੋਜਉ ਤਾ ਕੇ ਚਰਣ ਕਹਹੁ ਕਤ ਪਾਈਐ ॥
ਹਰਿ ਹਾਂ ਸੋਈ ਜਤੰਨੁ ਬਤਾਇ ਸਖੀ ਪ੍ਰਿਉ ਪਾਈਐ ॥੧੩॥

Now, I am searching for That One’s feet-sanctuary.
O’ Feminine friend! Tell me how to find-meet.
Hari-Light, yes, O’ Feminine friend!  
Tell me that effort which will yield in finding-meeting the Beloved! 13
     Guru Granth Sahib 1362

“You can find him through this way. Be firm in your thought that you will meet him. Don’t waver. Don’t think that you have failed. You have made several efforts to connect with him in your own way. However, this method is different, particularly for you. Your utter devotion and love have crystallized your conscience and have brought you to this satsang. This path will now lead you to your destination.

“The way you have loved till today, don’t think it did not bear any fruit. That effort shaped your conscience and brought you to this satsang. It is the fruit of that effort. In this satsang, you will find the straight road to Beloved’s country. You soared and got glimpses of your husband a few times, but you could not hold on to it firmly. The process and effort you will be told now will show you how to reach Beloved’s country.”

Full of happiness and gratitude, the Rani says, “O’ Guru-inspired sage, who knew my husband. You know the secret way to reach Beloved’s country. Those who forget that way, you put them back on the path. I am deeply indebted to you; blessed is whatever flows from your mouth. Please tell me the way that will take me straight to Beloved’s country so that I may reach my husband. I will make all the effort to walk the way you show me.

“Blessed are the ways you will lead me to meet him. It is the same way through which I will reach my destination. Blessed is the road that I will walk to reach Beloved’s country. You are doing a good deed by making me reach there. But this way is mysterious and endless. I am not that great, I don’t know anything, and the way is mysterious.

“Will I even get permission to walk?
What kind of permission do I need?
Is Beloved going to hate me for having doubts?
I am not good; I am bad.
I am forgetful; forgive me.

“Is Beloved’s way like Beloved?
Like Beloved’s forgiveness, Beloved is all-forgiving.
Beloved is full of kindness and graciousness.
So will Beloved’s way also be kind and gracious to me?
O’ Guru-inspired Sage, tell me openly, I am looking for my beloved; I am lost looking for him.

ਭੂਲੀ ਭੂਲੀ ਮੈ ਫਿਰੀ ਪਾਧਰੁ ਕਹੈ ਨ ਕੋਇ ॥
ਪੂਛਹੁ ਜਾਇ ਸਿਆਣਿਆ ਦੁਖੁ ਕਾਟੈ ਮੇਰਾ ਕੋਇ ॥

Lost and confused, I have been wandering; no one tells me the path.
Go and ask the wise so that someone may cut my sorrow.
     Guru Granth Sahib 1087

“O’ Guru-inspired sage, please reveal the path that leads me to my husband. Please don’t speak in mysterious tones. I have been lost for a long, long time. Nobody has told me the way. Today, I met you, and you have put me on the right path to make me reach the strange home of my husband. I am a simple woman with little understanding. I will make many mistakes; please be kind and tolerate me as my husband did. I tend to wander off. Please heal my wounds. Help me reach my husband’s abode.

“For a woman, that place is her place, her country, the place, the country that her husband says is his. That place is mine, which my husband says is his. Beyond that, even my own place is a strange place. What was once my own home has become an alien land. My parent’s home is no longer mine; it is foreign. Everything now seems alien to me. As sunshine is with the sun, as moonlight is with the moon, as the air is with the breeze, so does the wife with her husband abide. I am like the river that has left the mountaintop and fallen to the earth. I am struggling through the plains seeking the ocean, my husband. I am lost and drifting; please lead me to him.

“I am lost; I don’t know anything. Now please do a good deed. I have fallen at your door. Now you put me on the way to my beloved’s place. Now take me there, give me the hem of his cloak, give me the courage to hold on to it.”

The Guru-inspired being listens thoughtfully and slowly says, “O’ Rani! Listen to this saying of the Guru:

ਡਾ ਡੇਰਾ ਇਹੁ ਨਹੀ ਜਹ ਡੇਰਾ ਤਹ ਜਾਨੁ ॥
ਉਆ ਡੇਰਾ ਕਾ ਸੰਜਮੋ ਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਪਛਾਨੁ ॥

Through the letter Dadda, learn that this is not your final abode;
recognize the one which is the real abode.
Discipline of that abode, learn through the Sabad (Infinite-Wisdom) of the Guru.
     Guru Granth Sahib 256

“Rani ji, this is not the world where one stays forever. We must never think of this as our true abode. Our true abode is where your husband is residing. The secret to reaching that place is here. If we work correctly, we will reach our true abode. Otherwise, we will wander here and there. Our duty, our principle, is to live engaged in this world and serve the Creator. Your husband was practicing this way. He prepared himself for that ‘country’ with his heart and mind. He reached that ‘country’ effortlessly when he left this world because he knew the way. You yearn to meet him; therefore, you must become like him. Follow the discipline with a conscious mind. Carry out your responsibilities as he did, and you will become like him and reach him. Otherwise, you will waste your life in longing.

“Now you want to ask me the question: What rules do I have to practice? The answer to that is Raj ji: Whatever he did, you do those duties and start performing them as he did. You will become like him, and you will reach that place. Falsehood will not get you to meet him. Desires are like water. Perform the duties as he did and become truthful.”

With bated breath, the Rani listens to his advice. Unable to utter gratitude, she has become the embodiment of gratitude. Her face takes on the form of gratitude. However, there is still a longing in her. She is trying to understand what has been shared with her.

Her voice flowing in gratitude, “Tell me the Principle. Make me do whatever I need to do. Only then will I reach my husband’s ‘country.’ I don’t have any virtue, nor am I truthful. I am just lost and bewildered. Now you become benevolent. My only relief is that I have come to the satsang. Now you tell me the way; you make me reach there. You do this good deed and make me walk the path.”

The Guru-inspired being speaks, “The congregation has given me the task of speaking to you, making you understand the way to the ‘country’ of Truth.

“What process, method, and discipline should I tell you to follow to reach there? Whatever I say will be understood differently and will turn into something else. The only way is love. Love in itself is everything.

“Love is a discipline within itself.
How does the love plant grow?
It grows on its own.

“So, now, I will only tell you about this path of love. Love is fear-free, unblemished, serene, poised, and steady. There is no fluctuation. There is a longing in love; however, there is no confusion or desperation. Love is an extraordinary discipline.

“Listen, O’ Rani Raj, look at nature, look at creation: The elephant and the lion do not stay together; the hot currents in the ocean flow separately from the other waters in the ocean. Certain things do not mix. Certain minds do not meet. Whatever your state of mind is, that is what you will get, so says the Guru:

ਤੁਰਦੇ ਕਉ ਤੁਰਦਾ ਮਿਲੈ ਉਡਤੇ ਕਉ ਉਡਤਾ ॥
ਜੀਵਤੇ ਕਉ ਜੀਵਤਾ ਮਿਲੈ ਮੂਏ ਕਉ ਮੂਆ ॥

The walking one meets the walking one;
the flying one meets the flying one.
The living one meets the living one;
the dead one meets the dead one.
     Guru Granth Sahib 788

“While alive in this world, your husband died; he now lives, never to die again. From such dying arises life. If you wish to meet him, you have to die first. So, work on dying while alive. When you attain this state, you will have earned the right to meet your husband.”

The Rani now becomes the embodiment of love. Listening deeply, she enters the stage of amazement. His words enter her like the slow rain drizzle, absorbing her as the parched earth absorbs the raindrops. In total reverence, she says, “You are in charge. Kill me or bring back life after death. I leave it in your hands. Do as you wish.”

“The Guru with whose permission I speak is all-knowing, all-powerful. Rana Surat Singh was a complete Sikh. He attained a Gurmukh (Guru-oriented, ਗੁਰਮੁਖ) state and obtained a place in sach khand (eternal realm, ਸਚ ਖੰਡਿ ). Even while alive and in his physical form, he was in sach khand. When he left his body, he went to reside in sach khand and is there now.

“Rani ji, as sach khand is in the cosmos, so is sach khand in the body. When we live with the Guru, we are living in sach khand. You will become companions one day with continuous effort, and you will be together when you leave this body.

“The realm of sach khand is our country. Sach khand is within each one of us, and we, too, are in sach khand. However, it is not quite like other countries. Its width and distance cannot be measured. It has neither form nor color, nor is it a part of nature. All realms, all cosmos, time, and distance are part of it. It is beyond description, beyond comparison, and impossible to put in words. It is a spiritual play. Whatever examples I give you will fall short. Guru says;

It is difficult to write about sach khand

ਸਚ ਖੰਡਿ ਵਸੈ ਨਿਰੰਕਾਰੁ ॥
ਕਰਿ ਕਰਿ ਵੇਖੈ ਨਦਰਿ ਨਿਹਾਲ ॥
ਤਿਥੈ ਖੰਡ ਮੰਡਲ ਵਰਭੰਡ ॥
ਜੇ ਕੋ ਕਥੈ ਤ ਅੰਤ ਨ ਅੰਤ ॥
ਤਿਥੈ ਲੋਅ ਲੋਅ ਆਕਾਰ ॥
ਜਿਵ ਜਿਵ ਹੁਕਮੁ ਤਿਵੈ ਤਿਵ ਕਾਰ ॥
ਵੇਖੈ ਵਿਗਸੈ ਕਰਿ ਵੀਚਾਰੁ ॥
ਨਾਨਕ ਕਥਨਾ ਕਰੜਾ ਸਾਰੁ ॥੩੭॥

In the realm of Truth, abides the Formless One.
Having created creation, watches over it with a glance of grace.
There, in that state, are many regions, worlds, and universes.
If one speaks about them, there is no end, no limit to it.
There are worlds upon worlds and forms.
As is, as is the Command, so is, so is the proceeding of the world.
Having contemplated, the Formless One watches over the creation and rejoices.
Nanak: To describe this state is as hard as iron. 37
     Guru Granth Sahib 8

“To express it in words is as difficult as biting into iron with your teeth. The way to experience is within oneself. When it happens within you, you will live in that feeling. It happens on its own.

“Rani ji, Surat Singh was living in that feeling while he was alive and even now is living in that feeling. When you experience living in that feeling, you will become his eternal companion, never to be parted. Physical bodies meet and part. This physical form of meeting is an illusion. Only a meeting of ruh (spirit) is a real meeting. That meeting has its own surprising and unexplainable feeling. It is not visible; it is only felt. It is a game of feeling. You can only experience it when you walk the path. Intelligence cannot reach that place of feeling. It is an amalgamation of the essence; therefore, there is no parting.

“Rani ji, whatever you know is colored by perception. However, reality transpires only through personal experience. It is not an intellectual understanding; it is intuitive. When the veil lifts, separation annuls. And when separation ends, a true meeting occurs.

“You must believe that each of us is an inseparable part of the Creator, of the Divine.

ਕਹੁ ਕਬੀਰ ਇਹੁ ਰਾਮ ਕੀ ਅੰਸੁ ॥
ਜਸ ਕਾਗਦ ਪਰ ਮਿਟੈ ਨ ਮੰਸੁ ॥੪॥੨॥੫॥

Says Kabir: This spirit within is a part of the Charmer-Divine.
Just as ink on paper, it cannot be erased. 4.2.5
     Guru Granth Sahib 871

“We are spirits and not dead matter. The Creator is ever-present in creation. We are united like flowers strung on a piece of thread, ever-connected and inseparable.

“However, this universal harmony is invisible because there is a veil of forgetfulness. Whether it is a gap or a veil of forgetfulness, the remedy is simran (remembrance, ਸਿਮਰਨ). Simran of the Creator, of the Beloved. When simran becomes continuous and deepens, love blooms. The veil of forgetfulness lifts, and the gap vanishes—the Creator graces. Therefore, Rani ji, with determination and simran, the doors of experience open, and the experiences become realistic. More in-depth understanding comes with this meeting.

“So, the first step is to live in the Presence, with the Creator’s Presence.
Remember, the Creator is an embodiment of love.
Believe that the Creator loves you and loves all creation.
Believe that the Creator is in every being.
Remember, the Creator continuously.

“Continuous simran will lead you to the Creator. Love removes distance; love fills the gap—guard simran in your heart. Continuous simran intensifies devotion, and then Grace transpires, and connection occurs. Noble Rani ji, this is the path as revealed by the Guru…

ਸਹਜੇ ਸੁਖਿ ਸੁਤੀ ਸਬਦਿ ਸਮਾਇ ॥
ਆਪੇ ਪ੍ਰਭਿ ਮੇਲਿ ਲਈ ਗਲਿ ਲਾਇ ॥

Intuitively the One graced, sleeps in comfort, absorbed in Sabad.
Creator by Ownself unites, holding the graced in an embrace.
     Guru Granth Sahib 1247

To be continued….

Revised:

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Creative Director

Inni Kaur is Creative Director at the Sikh Research Institute (SikhRI). She has served SikhRI in several capacities since 2010, including Chair of the Board, and most recently as CEO. 

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