Friday, October 26, 2007



SUPERSTITIONS/ਭਰਮ/ਵਹਿਮ


ABSTRACT


Superstition is an irrational belief, practice, or rite maintained by ignorance of the laws of nature or by faith in magic or chance in the worship of a deity.  Guru Nanak refers to excessive exactness, rigor in religious opinions or practice, extreme and unnecessary scruples in the observance of religious rites in or of the ominous significance of a particular thing, circumstance or occurrence.  He also alludes to our obsession with points of minor importance, practices proceeding from excess of sculptures in religion, living in doubt, and duality with out paying attention to the teachings in Raag Asa:
ਰੋਗੁ ਭਰਮੁ ਭੇਦੁ ਮਨਿ ਦੂਜਾ
ਗੁਰ ਬਿਨੁ ਭਰਮਿ ਜਪਹਿ ਜਪੁ ਦੂਜਾ
ਆਦਿ ਪੁਰਖ ਗੁਰ ਦਰਸ ਨ ਦੇਖਹਿ
ਵਿਣੁ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦੈ ਜਨਮੁ ਕਿ ਲੇਖਹਿ
Rog bẖaram bẖėḏ man ḏūjā, Gur bin bẖaram jāpeh jap ḏūjā, Āaḏ Purakẖ Gur Daras Na Dėkẖeh, ViN Gur Sabḏai Janam Ke Lėkẖeh.

Those bearing maladies of doubt, superstition and duality in mind, bereft of Master’s guidance, fallen in duality other than remembering Naam, dwells in doubt. The Divine teacher reveals the Blessed Vision of the Primal God. Without the Word of the Guru's Sabd, human life is of no use?-----Guru Nanak Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 416-7

                                 ------------------------------------------------

Sikh Gurus from 1469-1708 actively tried to personally teach the Sikhs to let go of the rituals and superstitions. Now the present Sabd Guru (AGGS) has assumed that role of teachers passively, to those who attempt to find the Truth in the study of this scripture. But how many Sikhs try to learn the teachings and reflect on them in daily life?  How many of those who recite it, understand the meaning of its hymns?  Due to ignorance of the spirituality and reading the scripture without understanding and reflection in life, the rituals and many different superstitions have taken over and are still in vogue. Guru Angad in Raag Sarang refers to the stories being told around in Vedas leads to superstition
ਕਥਾ ਕਹਾਣੀ ਬੇਦੀਂ ਆਣੀ ਪਾਪੁ ਪੁੰਨੁ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ
ਦੇ ਦੇ ਲੈਣਾ ਲੈ ਲੈ ਦੇਣਾ ਨਰਕਿ ਸੁਰਗਿ ਅਵਤਾਰ
ਉਤਮ ਮਧਿਮ ਜਾਤੀਂ ਜਿਨਸੀ ਭਰਮਿ ਭਵੈ ਸੰਸਾਰੁ
Kathā kahāṇī beḏīʼn āṇī pāp punn bīcẖār. Ḏe ḏe laṇā lai lai ḏeṇā narak surag avṯār. Uṯam maḏẖim jāṯīʼn jinsī bẖaram bẖavai sansār.

The Vedas (Hindu Scriptures) bring forth stories, legends, and thoughts of vice and virtue. What is given, they receive, and what is received, they give. They are reincarnated in heaven and hell. High, low, social class and status makes the world wandering and lost in superstition.-----Guru Angad, Raag Sarang, AGGS. Page, 1243-15

Years ago it was very easy to get a copy of the AGGS from the book shops in Delhi or Amritsar. Now the distribution of AGGS is controlled, it can only be purchased  through SGPC or Gurudwaras.   Superstition exists that ordinary handling of AGGS would be a disrespect to the Guru.  AGGS describes a path to reach God but is not God itself. “What is it that is being disrespected?” The God Itself is Infinite (ਅਪਾਰ) and omnipresent (ਨਿਰੰਤਰ), within, without and continuous. God is Ink, Pen, Tablet, Writer, Scale, Weight, Weigher, Trader, and the article being weighed as enunciated in the following hymns:
ਆਪੇ ਪਟੀ ਕਲਮ ਆਪਿ ਉਪਰਿ ਲੇਖੁ ਭਿ ਤੂੰ
ਏਕੋ ਕਹੀਐ ਨਾਨਕਾ ਦੂਜਾ ਕਾਹੇ ਕੂ
Āpė patī kalam āp upar lėkẖ bẖe ṯūʼn, Ėko kahī¬ai nānkā ḏūjā kāhė kū.

O, God, You Yourself are the writing tablet, and You Yourself is the pen. You are also what is written on it. Speak of  One God, O Nanak, how could there be any other?-----Guru Nanak, Raag Malar, AGGS, Page, 1291-14  
ਆਪੇ ਕੰਡਾ ਤੋਲੁ ਤਰਾਜੀ ਆਪੇ ਤੋਲਣਹਾਰਾ
ਆਪੇ ਦੇਖੈ ਆਪੇ ਬੂਝੈ ਆਪੇ ਹੈ ਵਣਜਾਰਾ
Āpė kandā ṯol ṯarājī āpė ṯolaṇhārā, Āpė ḏėkẖai āpė būjẖai āpė hai vaṇjārā.

You Your self are the balance, the weights and the scale; You Yourself is the Weigher. You Your self see and You Yourself understand, You Yourself are the trader.-----Guru Nanak, Raag Suhi, AGGS, Page, 731-3
ਆਪੇ ਕੰਡਾ ਆਪਿ ਤਰਾਜੀ ਪ੍ਰਭਿ ਆਪੇ ਤੋਲਿ ਤੋਲਾਇਆ
ਆਪੇ ਸਾਹੁ ਆਪੇ ਵਣਜਾਰਾ ਆਪੇ ਵਣਜੁ ਕਰਾਇਆ
Āpė kandā āp ṯarājī parabẖ āpė ṯol ṯolā¬i¬ā, Āpė sāhu āpė vaṇjārā āpė vaṇaj karā¬i¬ā.

God It self is the balance scale, the Weigher, and It self weighs with the weights. God It self is the banker, the trader, and It self makes the trades.-----Guru Amar Das, Raag Sorath, AGGS, Page, 605-15

Q. Can God be disrespected by any one?

A.  God is only disrespected by not following the teachings incorporated in Sabd Guru by spiritually ignorant, self willed (ਮੂਰਖ), and by over-use of the lower instincts while no effort is made to develop the higher instincts and those are the ones who have to answer God for their blasphemic actions;

ਨਿੰਦਕਾਂ ਪਾਸਹੁ ਹਰਿ ਲੇਖਾ ਮੰਗਸੀ ਬਹੁ ਦੇਇ ਸਜਾਈ
ਜੇਹਾ ਨਿੰਦਕ ਅਪਣੈ ਜੀਇ ਕਮਾਵਦੇ  ਤੇਹੋ ਫਲੁ ਪਾਈ ॥
Ninḏkāʼn pāshu har lėkẖā mangsī baho ḏė¬ė sajā¬ī. Jehā ninḏak apṇai jī▫e kamāvḏe ṯeho fal pā▫ī.

God summons the slanderers to answer for their accounts, and punishes them severely. As the slanderers think of acting, so are the fruits they obtain.-----Guru Amar Das, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 316-6

Q. Can god be made big or small?

A. Guru Nanak in Raag Asa and Kabir in Raag Gauri answer;

ਜੇ ਸਭਿ ਮਿਲਿ ਕੈ ਆਖਣ ਪਾਹਿ
ਵਡਾ ਨ ਹੋਵੈ ਘਾਟਿ ਨ ਜਾਇ
Je sabẖ mil kai ākẖaṇ pāhi. vadā na hovai gẖāt na jā▫e.

Even if everyone were to gather together and speak of God, It would neither become any greater nor any lesser. ||2||-----Guru Nanak, Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 9,-18 and Page, 349-9

ਨਾ ਓਹੁ ਬਢੈ ਨ ਘਟਤਾ ਜਾਇ
ਅਕੁਲ ਨਿਰੰਜਨ ਏਕੈ ਭਾਇ
Nā oh badẖai na gẖatṯā jā¬ė, Akul niranjan ėkai bẖā¬ė.

God does not increase or decrease, is unknowable and immaculate; It does not change.-----Kabir, Raag Gauri Thiti, AGGS, Page, 343-10

Q. Can the AGGS be polluted or disrespected by taking it in the Hotels for the performance of weddings?

A. No.  Guru would sanctify such places rather than getting polluted, as per answers by Guru Ram Das in Raag Asa;
ਜਿਥੈ ਜਾਇ ਬਹੈ ਮੇਰਾ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਸੋ ਥਾਨੁ ਸੁਹਾਵਾ ਰਾਮ ਰਾਜੇ
ਗੁਰਸਿਖੀਂ ਸੋ ਥਾਨੁ ਭਾਲਿਆ ਲੈ ਧੂਰਿ ਮੁਖਿ ਲਾਵਾ
Jithai jā¬ė bahai mėrā saṯgurū so thān suhāvā rām rājė, Gusikẖīʼn so thān bẖāli¬ā lai ḏẖūr mukẖ lāvā.

Wherever my True Guru goes and sits, that place is beautiful, O God and the King. The Guru's Sikhs seek out that place; they take the dust and apply it to their faces.-----Guru Ram Das, Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 450-17

In fact, a Sikh who calls himself a devout follower and does not follow the teachings of the Word in thought, spirit and right action does disrespect the Sabd Guru.

Q. Is it a disrespectful for AGGS being on the web?

A. No. God is omnipresent (ਸਰਬ ਵਿਆਪਕ/ਨਿਰੰਤਰ) as referred above.  Many Sikhs and myself carry a copy of AGGS in their laptops. It is the same screen where so many other nasty things are being watched and AGGS hymns are displayed;

Q. Should the monitor of PC be washed with soap or milk by ignorant Sikhs?

A. God is present in every part of the creation including the waves of TV, PC Monitor, Telephone and Web etc.
ਸੂਖਮ ਅਸਥੂਲ ਸਗਲ ਭਗਵਾਨ
ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਪਛਾਨ ॥੧੪॥
Sūkẖam asthūl sagal bẖagvān. Nānak gurmukẖ barahm pacẖẖān. ||14||

God exists in all subtle and gross matter (ਨਿਰਗੁਣ & ਸਰਗੁਣ). O Nanak, the Guru oriented realizes God. ||14||-----Guru Arjan, Thiti Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 299-17

To state that God is present at some places and not at other places is untrue.

ਲੋਗਾ ਭਰਮਿ ਨ ਭੂਲਹੁ ਭਾਈ
ਖਾਲਿਕੁ ਖਲਕ ਖਲਕ ਮਹਿ ਖਾਲਿਕੁ ਪੂਰਿ ਰਹਿਓ ਸ੍ਰਬ ਠਾਂਈ
Logha Bharam Na Bhooloh Bhai, Khalik Khalk Khalk Meh Khalik Poor Rewhip Sarb Thanyee.

O people, siblings of Destiny, do not wander deluded by doubt. The Creation is in the Creator, and the Creator is in the Creation, totally pervading and permeating all places.-----Kabir, Raag Parbhati Bhibhas, AGGS, Page, 1350-1

ਫਰੀਦਾ ਖਾਲਕੁ ਖਲਕ ਮਹਿ ਖਲਕ ਵਸੈ ਰਬ ਮਾਹਿ
ਮੰਦਾ ਕਿਸ ਨੋ ਆਖੀਐ ਜਾਂ ਤਿਸੁ ਬਿਨੁ ਕੋਈ ਨਾਹਿ ॥੭੫॥
Farīḏā kẖālak kẖalak meh kẖalak vasai rab māhi. Manḏā kis no ākẖī▫ai jāʼn ṯis bin ko▫ī nāhi. ||75||

Farid, the Creator is in the Creation, and the Creation abides in God. Whom can we call bad? There is none without God. ||75||-----Sloke Sheikh Farid, Mahala 5, AGGS, Page, 1381-17

The only way to get rid of duality and superstition is by seeking to be blessed by spiritual wisdom, following the teachings honestly and truthfully as delineated in Sabd Guru. Otherwise doubt and superstition will prevail by neglecting this advice as pointed by Guru Arjan in Raag Gauri;

ਹਰਿ ਬਿਸਰਤ ਸਹਸਾ ਦੁਖੁ ਬਿਆਪੈ
ਸਿਮਰਤ ਨਾਮੁ ਭਰਮੁ ਭਉ ਭਾਗੈ
Har Bisrat Sahsa Dukh Biapai, Simrit Naam Bharam Bhaou Bhagai.

Forgetting  God, superstition and sorrow shall overtake you. Meditating on the Naam, doubt and fear shall depart.-----Guru Arjan, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 190-5

People who live in anxiety or uncertainty, there is an inclination to be superstitious.  They lack strength and a sense of security.  Insecurity leads to fear which in turn leads to superstition.

Q. Is AGGS being treated as an idol?

A.  Yes.  The holy book is routinely covered with comforters and placed in cribs to protect it from cold at night and in the air conditioned room during hot weather. It is being fed the langar (Food) and parshad (Sweet Pudding).  Water is kept under it as under any idol. God is not a fool to be swindled around by these kinds of favors. Internal cleanliness is mandatory for spiritual progress:

ਔਤਰ ਮੈਲੁ ਜੇ ਤੀਰਥ ਨਾਵੈ ਤਿਸ ਬੈਕੁੰਠ ਨ ਜਾਨਾ
ਲੋਕ ਪਤੀਣੇ ਕਛੂ ਨ ਹੋਵੈ ਨਾਹੀ ਰਾਮੁ ਅਯਾਨਾ
ਪੂਜਹੁ ਰਾਮੁ ਏਕੁ ਹੀ ਦੇਵਾ
ਸਾਚਾ ਨਾਵਣੁ ਗੁਰ ਕੀ ਸੇਵਾ
Antar Mail Jay Tirath Navai Tis Baikunth Na Jana, Loak Pataanay Kachoo Na Hovai Naahee Ram AeaaNaa, Poojoh Raam Ayk Hee Deva, Saacha NavaN Gur Ki Sayva.

With filth within the heart, even if one bathes at sacred places of pilgrimage, shall not go to heaven. Nothing is gained by trying to please other people as the God cannot be fooled. Worship the One Divine Creator. The true cleansing bath is service to the Guru.-----Kabir Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 484-14, 15

Q. Does Akhand Paths lead to the fulfillment of desires?

A.  In these days the Gurudwaras, priests are fishing for money. They use these tactics of superstition for bait and continue on the “Laries” of Akhand Paths and keep on brain- washing people, creating fears in their mind.  The mind cannot be pacified or relieved of fear by performing ritualistic Paths.  Gurbani should be recited, understood, deliberated and reflected upon in daily life.

ਔਮਿ੍ਤ ਬਾਣੀ ਤਤੁ ਵਖਾਣੀ ਗਿਆਨ ਧਿਆਨ ਵਿਚਿ ਆਈ
ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਆਖੀ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਜਾਤੀ ਸੁਰਤੀਂ ਕਰਮਿ ਧਿਆਈ
Amrit Bani Tat Vakhani Giaan Dhiaan Vich Aa-ee, Gurmukh Aakhi Gurmikh Jaati Surteen Karam Dhia-ee.

The Ambrosial Word of Gurbani proclaims the essence of reality. Spiritual wisdom and meditation are contained within it. The Guru oriented chant, meditate, intuitively aware of, and  realize It.-----Guru Angad, Raag Sarang, AGGS, Page, 1243-17

Superstition is an irrational belief arising from ignorance or fear.

ਅਸੰਖ ਮੂਰਖ ਅੰਧ ਘੋਰ
ਅਸੰਖ ਚੋਰ ਹਰਾਮਖੋਰ ॥
Asankh Moorkh Andh Ghor. Asaʼnkẖ cẖor harāmkẖor.

Countless fools are blinded by ignorance. There are Countless thieves and embezzlers.-----Guru Nanak, Japji, AGGS, Page, 4-3

Despite the admonition in some faiths that ignorance is bliss, Sikhism is particularly adamant that ignorance does more harm than good.

If ignorance is bliss, why aren't more people happy?

ਗਿਆਨ ਹੀਣੰ ਅਗਿਆਨ ਪੂਜਾ
ਔਧ ਵਰਤਾਵਾ ਭਾਉ ਦੂਜਾ
Giaan HeeNan Agiaan Poojaa, Andh Vartaavaa Bhaou Doojaa.

Without spiritual wisdom, people worship ignorance. They grope in the dark, in the love of duality.-----Guru Nanak, Sloke Varan To Vadheek, AGGS, Page, 1412-4

ਅਗਿਆਨੀ ਮਾਨੁਖੁ ਭਇਆ ਜੋ ਨਾਹੀ ਸੋ ਲੋਰੈ
ਰੈਣਿ ਅੰਧਾਰੀ ਕਾਰੀਆ ਕਵਨ ਜੁਗਤਿ ਜਿਤੁ ਭੋਰੈ
ਭ੍ਰਮਤੋ ਭ੍ਰਮਤੋ ਹਾਰਿਆ ਅਨਿਕ ਬਿਧੀ ਕਰਿ ਟੋਰੈ
ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਕਿਰਪਾ ਭਈ ਸਾਧਸੰਗਤਿ ਨਿਧਿ ਮੋਰੈ
Agiani Manukh Bhaiaa Jo Nahin So Lorai, Rain AnDhaaree Kaaree-aa Kavan Jugat Jit Bhorai, Bharmato Bharmato Haari-aa Anik BiDhee Kar Torai, Kaho Nanak Kirpaa Bha-ee SaaDhsangat NiDh Morai.

Humanity is in spiritual ignorance.  People see things that do not exist. The night is dark and gloomy, how will the morning dawn? Wandering, wandering all around, I have grown weary, trying all sorts of things. I have been searching in vain. Says Nanak, God has shown mercy to me, I have found the treasure of  the Company of the Holy. -----Guru Arjan, AGGS, Page, 212-11

ਅੰਤਰਿ ਅਗਿਆਨੁ ਦੁਖੁ ਭਰਮੁ ਹੈ ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨਿ ਗਵਾਈ
ਜਿਸੁ ਕ੍ਰਿਪਾ ਕਰਹਿ ਤਿਸੁ ਮੇਲਿ ਲੈਹਿ ਸੋ ਨਾਮੁ ਧਿਆਈ
Antar Agiaan Dukh Bharam Hai Gur Gian Gavaeya, Jis Kirpaa Karahi Tis Mayl Laihi So Naam Dhi-aa-ee.

Deep within, there is ignorance, suffering and doubt.  Through the spiritual wisdom of the Guru, they are eradicated. He alone meditates on the Naam, whom God unites mercifully with Itself.-----Guru Nanak, Raag Malar, AGGS, Page, 1291-17

ਬਸਇ ਕਰੋਧੁ ਸਰੀਰਿ ਚੰਡਾਰਾ
ਅਗਿਆਨਿ ਨ ਸੂਝੈ ਮਹਾ ਗੁਬਾਰਾ
Bas-i KaroDh Sareer Chandaaraa, Agiaan Na Soojhai Maha Gubara.

Anger is the outcaste which hides within the body, one is in the utter darkness of ignorance, but does not understand.-----Guru Arjan, Raag Suhi, AGGS, Page, 759-14

Superstition includes “any dogma, chance, practice, or rite unreasonably upheld by faith in magic, or statement of ideas or opinion, especially one formally or authoritatively considered to be the absolute truth.” Kabir lived until last years of his life in Banaras, where alone in the estimation of Hindus deliverance may be obtained. Those who died in Magahar town have no hope of ultimate beatitude. To beat the superstition and using common sense, Kabir moved to Magahar and died there.

ਜਉ ਤਨੁ ਕਾਸੀ ਤਜਹਿ ਕਬੀਰਾ ਰਮਈਐ ਕਹਾ ਨਿਹੋਰਾ
ਕਹਤੁ ਕਬੀਰੁ ਸੁਨਹੁ ਰੇ ਲੋਈ ਭਰਮਿ ਨ ਭੂਲਹੁ ਕੋਈ
ਕਿਆ ਕਾਸੀ ਕਿਆ ਊਖਰੁ ਮਗਹਰੁ ਰਾਮੁ ਰਿਦੈ ਜਉ ਹੋਈ
Jao Tan Kaasi Tajeh Kabira Rameeai Kaha Nihora. Kahat Kabir Sunoh Ray Lo-ee Bharam Na Bhooloh Koyee, Kia Kaasi Kia Ookhar Maghar Ram Ridai Jaou Hoyee.

If Kabir were to leave his body at Benares, and so liberate himself, what obligation would he have to the God ? Says Kabir, listen, O people, do not be deluded by doubt. What is the difference between Benares and the barren land of Magahar, if the God is within one's heart?-----Kabir, Raag Dhanasari, AGGS, Page, 692-6
ਮਾਟੀ ਏਕ ਭੇਖ ਧਰਿ ਨਾਨਾ ਤਾ ਮਹਿ ਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਪਛਾਨਾ
ਕਹੈ ਕਬੀਰਾ ਭਿਸਤ ਛੋਡਿ ਕਰਿ ਦੋਜਕ ਸਿਉ ਮਨੁ ਮਾਨਾ
Mātī ek bẖekẖ ḏẖar nānā ṯā mėh barahm pacẖẖānā. Kahai Kabir Bhisat Chodh Kar Dozak Seo Man Manaa.

The clay is one, but it has taken many forms; I recognize the One God within them all. Says Kabir, I have abandoned paradise, and reconciled my mind to hell.-----Raag Asa, Kabir, AGGS, Page, 480-9

The fact that the evidence is incomplete and at times even contradictory. Still intelligent people hold different beliefs about evolution and God, even when the evidence is there, so  much has to be learned by each of us.

Sikhism posits that all things act and are acted upon in accordance with their nature, that under certain conditions the results will invariably be substantially the same. That’s what Dharma (Righteousness) is, following the eternal Laws of Mother Nature truthfully and honestly.

Examples of superstition good and bad, prevalent in India: Omens drawn from meeting a widow, a man with a bare head, from water, sneezing, fire breaking wind, hiccups, lunar and week days, unlucky moments, black cat crossing the path, number 13 or 7, flickering of the eyelid, meeting a lower caste individual or a Brahmin and conjunction of planets etc. are all superstitions. Guru Amar Das ponders over days in Raag Bilawal:

ਛਨਿਛਰਵਾਰਿ ਸਉਣ ਸਾਸਤ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ
ਹਉਮੈ ਮੇਰਾ ਭਰਮੈ ਸੰਸਾਰੁ
Cẖẖanicẖẖarvār sa­uṇ sāsaṯ bīcẖār. Ha­umai mėrā bẖarmai sansār.

Saturday: Consideration of the Shastra of Sauna (Saunaka a sage) dealing with omens (whether an action is good or bad, which time is suitable or unsuitable for that action), is merely whim and ego deluding the whole world.-----Guru Amar Das, Raag Bilawal, AGGS, Page, 841-16

Superstitions prevalent in the west:

A girl counts the leaves of a flower, as she says: "One, he comes; two, he tarries; three, he courts; four, he marries; five, he goes away." Thousands of persons believe in lucky and unlucky days, numbers, signs and jewels. Scientifically, seeing the moon over the right or left shoulder, or not seeing it cannot possibly affect the moon; nor can it impact or change the influence of the moon on any earthly thing.

Thousands of persons believe in lucky and unlucky days, numbers, signs and jewels.

Many people regard Friday as an unlucky day -- as a bad day to commence a journey, to marry, to make any investment.  The village priests declared that Jan 12, 64 was not a proper day for this author to get married.   Fifty two years later, he is happy with 3 sons and 10 grandchildren.

There are thousands of lucky and unlucky things, warnings, omens and prophecies, but all sensible, sane and reasoning human beings know that every one is an absurd and idiotic superstition. Guru Ram Das in Raag Kanrha tells the stories of life in the following Sabd:

ਮਿਥਿਆ ਭਰਮਿ ਭਰਮਿ ਬਹੁ ਭ੍ਰਮਿਆ ਲੁਬਧੋ ਪੁਤ੍ਰ ਕਲਤ੍ਰ ਮੋਹ ਪ੍ਰੀਤਿ
ਜੈਸੇ ਤਰਵਰ ਕੀ ਤੁਛ ਛਾਇਆ ਖਿਨ ਮਹਿ ਬਿਨਸਿ ਜਾਇ ਦੇਹ ਭੀਤਿ ॥੧॥
Mithia Bharam Bharam Bauh Bharmia Lubdho Putar Kalutar Moh Preet. Jaise ṯarvar kī ṯucẖẖ cẖẖā▫i▫ā kẖin mėh binas jā▫e ḏeh bẖīṯ. ||1|

In false doubt and superstition, people wander all around, lured by love and emotional attachment to their children and families. But just like the passing shade of the tree, your body-wall shall crumble in an instant. ||1|-----Guru Ram Das, Raag Kanrha, AGGS, Page, 1295-17

Miracles are not simply impossible, but they are unthinkable by any human capable of thinking. An intelligent person cannot believe that a miracle ever was or ever will be performed. Ignorance is the soil in which belief in miracles grows. Man should think and use all his senses to examine and reason out. The human who cannot think is less than human. A human who will not think is traitor to himself.  One who is afraid of thinking is a slave to superstitions.

ਭ੍ਰਮ ਕੀ ਕੂਈ ਤ੍ਰਿਸਨਾ ਰਸ ਪੰਕਜ ਅਤਿ ਤੀਖ੍ਯ੍ਯਣ ਮੋਹ ਕੀ ਫਾਸ
ਕਾਟਨਹਾਰ ਜਗਤ ਗੁਰ ਗੋਬਿਦ ਚਰਨ ਕਮਲ ਤਾ ਕੇ ਕਰਹੁ ਨਿਵਾਸ
Bharam Ki Kooyee Trisna Ras Pankaj Ati Teekhan Moh Ki Faas, Kaatanhaar Jagat Gur Gobid Charan Kamal Ta Ke Karoh Nivaas.

Superstition is the well, thirst for pleasure is the mud, and emotional attachment is the noose, so tight around your neck. The only one who can cut this is the Guru and Creator of the Universe, The God, so let yourself dwell at God’s Lotus Feet (Sabd Itself).-----Guru Arjan, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 204-10
ਆਪੀਨ੍ਹ੍ਹੈ ਆਪੁ ਸਾਜਿਓਨੁ ਆਪੇ ਹੀ ਥੰਮ੍ਹ੍ਹਿ ਖਲੋਆ
ਆਪੇ ਪਟੀ ਕਲਮ ਆਪਿ ਆਪਿ ਲਿਖਣਹਾਰਾ ਹੋਆ
Āpīnĥai āp sāji¬on āpė hī thamiĥ kẖalo¬ā, Āpė patī kalam āp āp likẖaṇhārā ho¬ā.

God created It self, and is the supporting pillar. God  Itself is the paper, the pen, and the writer.-----Sata Balwand, AGGS, Page, 968-14

Bhai Gurdas refers to the stories in vogue in the villages among rabble in his Vaar 5;

ਨਾਰ ਪੁਰਖੁ ਪਾਣੀ ਅਗਨਿ ਛਿਕ ਪਦ ਹਿਡਕੀ ਵਰਤਾਰਾ------ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਸੁਖ ਫਲੁ ਪਾਰ ਉਤਾਰਾ
Naar Purakh PaaNee Agan Chik Pad HiDkee Vartaaraa-Gurmukh Sukh Fal Paar Outaraa.

It is superstitious to imply good or bad omens in meeting a widow, a bare headed man, water, fire, sneezing, breaking wind, hiccups, lunar and week days.  It is not rational to regard some moments, or some direction in travel as lucky or unlucky. The life led in the light of certain omens, or under the influence of the nine planets, the twelve signs of zodiac, or magical incantations, divinations from the voices is all futile. Cries of donkeys, dogs, cats, kites, black birds and jackals cannot control our lives. The Guru oriented reject all such superstitions and enjoy happiness with God and safely make it across the world-ocean.-----Bhai Gurdas, Vaar 5, Pauri, 8

We know that millions are seeking the impossible, trying to secure the aid of the supernatural, to solve the problems of life, to solve the riddles of destiny, and to pluck from the future its secret. We know that all their efforts would be in vain.

Science is the real redeemer. It will put honesty above hypocrisy, mental veracity above all belief. It will teach the religion of usefulness. It will destroy bigotry in all its forms. It will put thoughtful doubt above thoughtless faith. We know that science has given us all we have of value. Science is the only civilizer. It has freed the slave, clothed the naked, and fed the hungry, lengthened life.  It has provided us homes and hearths, pictures and books, airplanes, ships and railways, telegraphs and cables, engines that tirelessly turn the countless wheels.  It has also partially destroyed superstition. We believe in the natural, in the unbroken and unbreakable succession of causes and effects.

Conclusion:

The monster of superstition has destroyed nations and races. The energies of man are wasted in a vain effort to secure the protection of the supernatural. In the presence of the mysteries of life and thought, of force and substance, of growth and decay, of birth and death, of joy and pain, of the sufferings of the good, the triumphs of wrong, the intelligent honest man is compelled to say: "I do not know", but still has the courage to refute the empty rituals of ignorance and superstition.

The danger to the Sikh philosophy comes from degeneration of morals, from beclouding one's mental horizons and from the atrophy of moral and spiritual nature. Individuals put their vested interest first, and truths and ideals go begging. Moral life cannot be lived in aloofness.  Morality is the nurse of spirituality.
ਪਾਖੰਡ ਭਰਮ ਉਪਾਵ ਕਰਿ ਥਾਕੇ ਰਿਦ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਮਾਇਆ ਮਾਇਆ
ਸਾਧੂ ਪੁਰਖੁ ਪੁਰਖਪਤਿ ਪਾਇਆ ਅਗਿਆਨ ਅੰਧੇਰੁ ਗਵਾਇਆ
Pakẖand bẖaram upāv kar thākė riḏ anṯar mā¬i¬ā mā¬i¬ā, Sadhu Purkh Purkhpat Paa-eaa Agiaan Andhayr Gavaeyaa.

In the practice of hypocrisy and superstition, people have grown weary of the effort, but still, deep within their hearts, they yearn for Maya, Maya. By the Grace of the Holy Person, I have met the God , the Primal Being, and the darkness of ignorance is dispelled.-----Guru Ram Das, Raag Basant Hindole, AGGS, Page, 1178-8

No comments: