Tuesday, August 1, 2017




ATTACHMENT/BONDAGE/ਮੋਹ


ABSTRACT


The word bondage in Sikh literature refers to the state or condition of being bound to a system or instinct.  It can be also an emotional attachment to a thing or person, which could be erotic in nature. This all happens in the mind, which has to be freed from it for spiritual liberation. Mind can be both the source of bondage and the source of freedom. The world is in bondage through three modes of Maya as expressed by Guru Nanak in Siri Raag:

ਤ੍ਰਿਹੁ ਗੁਣ ਬੰਧੀ ਦੇਹੁਰੀ ਜੋ ਆਇਆ ਜਗਿ ਸੋ ਖੇਲੁ
ਵਿਜੋਗੀ ਦੁਖਿ ਵਿਛੁੜੇ ਮਨਮੁਖਿ ਲਹਹਿ ਨ ਮੇਲੁ
Tarihu Gun BanDhee Dayhuree Jo Aa-i-aa Jag So Khayl, Vijogee Dukh Vichhurhay Manmukh Laheh Na Mayl.

The three qualities of Maya hold the body in bondage; whoever comes into the world is subject to their play. Those who separate themselves from God wander lost in misery. The self-willed do not attain union with God. -----Guru Nanak, Siri Raag, AGGS, Page, 21-5

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

Hinduism- Bondage arises from the bonds or attachments which beings form with the world. It is responsible for human suffering, delusion, ignorance, and continuation of the individual souls in the mortal world. The soul is eternally free, unattached, immutable and indestructible, but a living being is bound by his own actions, desires, and attachments which further bind him to the mortal world. You cannot easily escape from it, until you overcome desires and attachments, arrest the progression of karma, silence your ego, practice renunciation and become equal to the dualities of life. The Vedas affirm that neither through good actions nor through sacrificial ceremonies one can become free from bondage. Bondage arises because desire-ridden actions have consequences, which leave strong impressions in the mind.



Judaism- God promised freedom from bondage and gave the children of Israel Torah. Now why would YHWH lead the people out of bondage in Egypt, lead them to Mt. Sinai, and deliver them right back into bondage again? And why would he at the same time promise them freedom. God is no liar. He promised the people freedom and he gave them Torah because the Torah is freedom from bondage.


Bible-And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. -----Ephesians 2:1-3  ESV / 4


Buddhism-The flaws of cyclic existence: Relatives at home, enemies, friends and possessions in the world are the causes of worry for the body and mind. Only virtuous actions can benefit others. Therefore, I will not be attached to these ties and I will cast them away as I would a snake in my lap.-----Buddha



Islam- O you who have attained to faith! Let not your worldly goods or your children make you oblivious of the remembrance of God: for if any behave thus - it is they, they who are the losers!         ----Quran- 63 :9-11


Sikhism- The whole world is in bondage through Ego (ਹਉਮੈ) and Maya as referred in the following hymns of Sikh Scripture:                              
ਹਉਮੈ ਬੰਧਨ ਬੰਧਿ ਭਵਾਵੈ
ਨਾਨਕ ਰਾਮ ਭਗਤਿ ਸੁਖੁ ਪਾਵੈ ॥੮॥੧੩॥
Ha-umai BanDhan BanDh Bhavaavai. Nānak rām bẖagaṯ sukẖ pāvai. 

Egotism binds people in bondage, and causes them to wander around lost. O Nanak, peace is obtained through devotional worship of the God. -----Guru Nanak, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 227-1

In order to grow spiritually one has to break this bondage of Maya by liberation obtained through the Will and Grace of God.  The state of liberation from human bondage is a spiritual state of being in tune with the Ultimate.  It is obtained by subjugating the lower instincts and developing the virtues and perfections, while one is still alive although dead at the material sensory level. Guru Nanak in Siri Raag and Guru Arjan in Raag Gauri ponder this issue:

ਬੰਦਿ ਖਲਾਸੀ ਭਾਣੈ ਹੋਇ
ਹੋਰੁ ਆਖਿ ਨ ਸਕੈ ਕੋਇ  
Band Khalaasee Bhaanai Ho-ay, Hor Aakh Na Sakai Ko-ay.

Liberation from bondage comes only by God’s Will. No one else has any say in this. -----Guru Nanak, Siri Raag, AGGS, Page, 5-13

Guru Nanak explains in Raag Gauri that it is all the play of the mind:

ਮਨ ਤੇ ਉਪਜੈ ਮਨ ਮਾਹਿ ਸਮਾਇ
ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਮੁਕਤੋ ਬੰਧੁ ਨ ਪਾਇ
ਸਬਦੁ ਬੀਚਾਰਿ ਛੁਟੈ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਇ  
Man Tay Upjai Man Maahi Samaa-ay. Gurmukh Mukto BanDh Na Paa-ay, Sabd Beechaar Chhutai Har Naa-ay.

From the mind we originate, and into the mind we are absorbed. As Guru oriented, we are liberated, and are unbound. Contemplating the Word of the Sabd, we are emancipated through the Name of God. -----Guru Nanak, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 152-1

ਜਾਤੋ ਜਾਇ ਕਹਾ ਤੇ ਆਵੈ ॥
ਕਹ ਉਪਜੈ ਕਹ ਜਾਇ ਸਮਾਵੈ ॥ 
ਕਿਉ ਬਾਧਿਓ ਕਿਉ ਮੁਕਤੀ ਪਾਵੈ
ਕਿਉ ਅਬਿਨਾਸੀ ਸਹਜਿ ਸਮਾਵੈ
Jāṯo jā▫e kahā ṯe āvai.Kah upjai kah jā▫e samāvai. Ki-o BaaDhi-o Ki-o Muktee Paavai, Ki-o Abhinaasee Sahj Samaavai.

How can we know where we came from? Where did we originate, and where will we go and merge? How are we bound, and how do we obtain liberation? How do we merge with intuitive ease into the Eternal God? -----Guru Nanak, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 152-15

Guru Nanak in Raag Tukhari and Guru Arjan in Raag Maru describes the way of getting rid of bondage:
ਮਨਿ ਰਾਮੁ ਨਹੀ ਜਾਤਾ ਸਾਝ ਪ੍ਰਭਾਤਾ ਅਵਘਟਿ ਰੁਧਾ ਕਿਆ ਕਰੇ
ਬੰਧਨਿ ਬਾਧਿਆ ਇਨ ਬਿਧਿ ਛੂਟੈ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਸੇਵੈ ਨਰਹਰੇ
Man Raam Nahee Jaataa Saajh Parbhataa Avghat RuDhaa Ki-aa Karay, BanDhan BaaDhi-aa In BiDh Chhootai Gurmukh Sayvai Narharay.

The mortal does not know God in the evening, or in the morning; trapped in the treacherous path, what will he do? Bound in bondage, he is released only by this method: as Guru oriented, serve God. ------Guru Nanak, Raag Tukhari, AGGS, Page, 1112-18

Love between parents, siblings, and a relative is bondage; an obstruction to spiritual growth:

ਮਾਤਾ ਪਿਤ ਭਾਈ ਸੁਤ ਚਤੁਰਾਈ ਸੰਗਿ ਨ ਸੰਪੈ ਨਾਰੇ
ਸਾਇਰ ਕੀ ਪੁਤ੍ਰੀ ਪਰਹਰਿ ਤਿਆਗੀ ਚਰਣ ਤਲੈ ਵੀਚਾਰੇ
Maataa Pit Bhaa-ee Sut Chaturaa-ee Sang Na Sampai Naaray, Saa-ir Kee Putree Parhar Ti-aagee Charan Talai Veechaaray.

Mother, father, family, children, cleverness, property and spouses - none of these shall go with you. I have renounced Maya, the daughter of the ocean; reflecting upon reality, I have trampled it under my feet. -----Guru Nanak, Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 437-11

ਮਾਤਾ ਪਿਤ ਭਾਈ ਸੁਤ ਚਤੁਰਾਈ ਸੰਗਿ ਨ ਸੰਪੈ ਨਾਰੇ
ਸਾਇਰ ਕੀ ਪੁਤ੍ਰੀ ਪਰਹਰਿ ਤਿਆਗੀ ਚਰਣ ਤਲੈ ਵੀਚਾਰੇ ॥
Māṯā piṯā sabẖ heṯ hai heṯe palcẖā▫ī rām.Heṯe palcẖā▫ī purab kamā▫ī met na sakai ko▫ī. 

Mother and father - all are subject to this love; in this love, they are entangled on account of their past actions, which no one can erase.-----Guru Amar Das, Raag Vadhans, AGGS, Page, 571-11

This all happens in the mind, which has to be freed from it for spiritual growth. As indicated earlier, mind can be either the source of bondage or the source of freedom. It depends on how the mind is used. The right use of the mind under God’s Will becomes meditation and love for God.  The wrong use of the mind controlled by self-will leads to material attachment or bondage of relations, as expressed in the following hymns of Sabd Guru:

ਮਨਮੁਖੁ ਮੋਹਿ ਵਿਆਪਿਆ ਬੈਰਾਗੁ ਉਦਾਸੀ ਨ ਹੋਇ  
ਸਤਗੁਰੁ ਸੇਵਿ ਮੋਹੁ ਪਰਜਲੈ ਘਰ ਹੀ ਮਾਹਿ ਉਦਾਸਾ
Manmukh Moh Viaapiaa Bairag Udasee Na Hoey, Satgur Sayv Moh Parjaalai Ghar He Maa-eh Oudaasaa.

The self-willed person is engrossed in the love of the worldly pleasures and falsehood.  He cannot practice love for Truth. The Guru oriented get rid of the worldly love or passions through the service of the Guru and then enjoy bliss of God’s love. -----Guru Amar Das, Siri Raag, AGGS, Page, 29-10-12

Guru Amar Das comments on the bondage between body and soul in Raag Gauri:

ਕਾਇਆ ਹੰਸ ਕਿਆ ਪ੍ਰੀਤਿ ਹੈ ਜਿ ਪਇਆ ਹੀ ਛਡਿ ਜਾਇ
ਏਸ ਨੋ ਕੂੜੁ ਬੋਲਿ ਕਿ ਖਵਾਲੀਐ ਜਿ ਚਲਦਿਆ ਨਾਲਿ ਨ ਜਾਇ
Kaaeia Hans Kia Preet Hai Peiaa Hee Chadd Jaaey, Ays No Koorh Bol Ke Khavaalee-ai Je Chaldi-aa Naal Na Jaa-ay.

What love is this between the body and soul, which ends when the body falls? Why feed it by telling lies? When you leave, it does not go with you. -----Guru Amar Das, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 510-19
                                              ਮਾਇਆ ਮੋਹਿ ਸਭੋ ਜਗੁ ਬਾਧਾ
                                           ਹਉਮੈ ਪਚੈ ਮਨਮੁਖ ਮੂਰਾਖਾ ॥
                                 ਗੁਰ ਨਾਨਕ ਬਾਹ ਪਕਰਿ ਹਮ ਰਾਖਾ ॥੪॥੨॥੯੬॥
  Maa-i-aa Mohi Sabho Jag BaaDhaa. Ha▫umai pacẖai manmukẖ mūrākẖā.Gur Nānak bāh pakar ham rākẖā. 

Attached to Maya, the whole world is in bondage. The foolish self-willed are consumed by their egotism. Taking me by the arm, Guru Nanak has saved me. -----Guru Arjun, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 394-17

                                                ਕਰਿ ਕਿਰਪਾ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਬੰਧਨ ਛੋਟ
                                                     ਚਰਣ ਕਮਲ ਕੀ ਦੀਨੀ ਓਟ ॥੩॥
Kar Kirpaa Parabh BanDhan Chhot. Cẖaraṇ kamal kī ḏīnī ot. 

Granting Its Grace, God has released me from bondage and has given me the Support of Its Lotus Feet.-----Guru Arjun, Raag Gauri, AGGS, Page, 194-11

Once a person has centered his mind on the right thought, achieved meditation, and gained poise, he is beyond our normal morality and tradition. He is beyond our limitations, does not judge, and ignores the bad and is just oriented towards the good. When the mind is functioning on the wrong thought, whatsoever one does, or chooses, or decides will be wrong. Mind has the faculty to imagine. Paintings, art, dance, music, meditation, they all spring from imagination. However, everything that is ugly has also come through imagination. One has to start the process of re-learning and straightening the thought process into thinking the right thoughts till it becomes a second nature. It is then that one is on the right path of spiritual progress and can utilize the tools provided in AGGS.

ਸਿਫਤਿ ਮੁਹਬਤਿ ਅਥਾਹ ਰਹੀਮਾ
ਹਕੁ ਹੁਕਮੁ ਸਚੁ ਖੁਦਾਇਆ ਬੁਝਿ ਨਾਨਕ ਬੰਦਿ ਖਲਾਸ ਤਰਾ
Sifat Muhabat Athaah Raheemaa, Hak Hukam Sach Khudaa-i-aa Bujh Nanak Band Khalaas Taraa.

The Qualities and the Love of the Merciful God are unfathomable. Realize the True Will, the Command of the Creator, O Nanak; you shall be released from bondage, and carried across.-----Guru Arjun, Raag Maru, AGGS, Page, 1084-13

Guru Tegh Bahadur advises in Raag Sorath and Sarang:

ਪ੍ਰੀਤਮ ਜਾਨਿ ਲੇਹੁ ਮਨ ਮਾਹੀ
ਅਪਨੇ ਸੁਖ ਸਿਉ ਹੀ ਜਗੁ ਫਾਂਧਿਓ ਕੋ ਕਾਹੂ ਕੋ ਨਾਹੀ
ਸੁਖ ਮੈ ਆਨਿ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਮਿਲਿ ਬੈਠਤ ਰਹਤ ਚਹੂ ਦਿਸਿ ਘੇਰੈ  
ਬਿਪਤਿ ਪਰੀ ਸਭ ਹੀ ਸੰਗੁ ਛਾਡਿਤ ਕੋਊ ਨ ਆਵਤ ਨੇਰੈ
ਘਰ ਕੀ ਨਾਰਿ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਹਿਤੁ ਜਾ ਸਿਉ ਸਦਾ ਰਹਤ ਸੰਗ ਲਾਗੀ
ਜਬ ਹੀ ਹੰਸ ਤਜੀ ਇਹ ਕਾਂਇਆ ਪ੍ਰੇਤ ਪ੍ਰੇਤ ਕਰਿ ਭਾਗੀ
ਇਹ ਬਿਧਿ ਕੋ ਬਿਉਹਾਰੁ ਬਨਿਓ ਹੈ ਜਾ ਸਿਉ ਨੇਹੁ ਲਗਾਇਓ
ਅੰਤ ਬਾਰ ਨਾਨਕ ਬਿਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਜੀ ਕੋਊ ਕਾਮਿ ਨ ਆਇਓ
 Pritam Jaan Leh Man Maahi, Aapnay Sukh Seo He Jug Fandhio Ko Kahu Ko Naahi, Sukh Mea Aan Bahut Mil Bethatt Rahat Chahoo Dis Gherai, Bipat Paree Sabh He Sung Chaadat Koou Na Aavat Nerai, Ghar Ki Naar Bahut Hit Ja Seo Sada Rahat Sung Laagee, Jub He Hans Tajee Eh Kaaneyaa Preat Preat Kar Bhaagee, Eh Bidh Ko Beohaar Baneo Hai Ja Seo Nehu Lagaaeou,Unt Baar Nanak Bin Har Ji Koou Kaam Na Aaeou.

O, dear friend, know this in your mind. The world is entangled in its own pleasures; no one is for anyone else. In good times, many come and sit together, surrounding you on all four sides. But when hard times come, they all leave, and no one comes near you. Your wife, whom you love so much, may have remained ever attached to you.  But she runs away crying, "Ghost! Ghost!", as soon as the swan-soul leaves your body. This is the way of the world.  Among those whom we love so much, at the final moment, O Nanak, no one is any use at all, except the Dear God. -----Guru Tegh Bahadur, Raag Sorath, Page, 634

ਹਰਿ ਬਿਨੁ ਤੇਰੋ ਕੋ ਨ ਸਹਾਈ
ਕਾਂ ਕੀ ਮਾਤ ਪਿਤਾ ਸੁਤ ਬਨਿਤਾ ਕੋ ਕਾਹੂ ਕੋ ਭਾਈ
ਧਨੁ ਧਰਨੀ ਅਰੁ ਸੰਪਤਿ ਸਗਰੀ ਜੋ ਮਾਨਿਓ ਅਪਨਾਈ
ਤਨ ਛੂਟੈ ਕਛੁ ਸੰਗਿ ਨ ਚਾਲੈ ਕਹਾ ਤਾਹਿ ਲਪਟਾਈ
Har Bin Tayro Ko Na Sahaa-ee, KaaN Kee Maat Pitaa Sut Banitaa Ko Kaahoo Ko Bhaa-ee. Dhan Dharnee Ar Sampat Sagree Jo Maani-o Apnaa-ee, Tan Chhootai Kachh Sang Na Chaalai Kahaa Taahi Laptaa-ee.

No one can offer help and support, except God. Who has any mother, father, child or spouse? Who is anyone's brother or sister? All the wealth, land and property which you consider your own, when you leave your body, none of it shall go along with you. Why do you cling to them? -----Guru Tegh Bahadur, Raag Sarang, AGGS, Page, 1231-8

ਨਿਜ ਕਰਿ ਦੇਖਿਓ ਜਗਤੁ ਮੈ ਕੋ ਕਾਹੂ ਕੋ ਨਾਹਿ
ਨਾਨਕ ਥਿਰੁ ਹਰਿ ਭਗਤਿ ਹੈ ਤਿਹ ਰਾਖੋ ਮਨ ਮਾਹਿ ॥.
Nij Kar Daykhi-o Jagat Mai Ko Kaahoo Ko Naahi, Nanak Thir Har Bhagat Hai Tih Raakho Man Maahi.

I had looked upon the world as my own, but no one belongs to anyone else. O, Nanak, only devotional worship of God is permanent.  Enshrine this in your mind. -----Sloke Guru Tegh Bahadur 48, AGGS, Page, 1429-1

What keeps us constantly struggling with life is the attitude of non-acceptance, of not trusting the basic process of life unfolding. We suffer under the false assumption that the goal of life is to always avoid what we find unpleasant and to try to dwell in constant comfort.

Kabir advises that the bondage is temporary and false during the present life. 

ਕਬੀਰ ਸਭੁ ਜਗੁ ਹਉ ਫਿਰਿਓ ਮਾਂਦਲੁ ਕੰਧ ਚਢਾਇ
ਕੋਈ ਕਾਹੂ ਕੋ ਨਹੀ ਸਭ ਦੇਖੀ ਠੋਕਿ ਬਜਾਇ
Kabir Sabh JKag Ha-o Firi-o MaaNdal KanDh Chadhaa-ay, Ko-ee Kaahoo Ko Nahee Sabh Daykhee Thok Bajaa-ay.

Kabir, I have wandered all over the world, carrying the drum on my shoulder. No one belongs to anyone else; I have looked and carefully studied it. -----Kabir Sloke # 113, AGGS, Page, 1370-9,10


Conclusion:



In Sikh thought the ideal state is “being dead while alive” (ਜੀਵਨ ਮੁਕਤ), which is achieved by living an ethical and spiritual course of life.  By subjugating the lower instincts one is born with and development of virtues and perfections, to be blessed by God’s Grace.

Guru Nanak describes these entanglements in Sri Raag and Raag Asa

ਕੇਤੇ ਬੰਧਨ ਜੀਅ ਕੇ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਮੋਖ ਦੁਆਰ ॥
ਸਚਹੁ ਓਰੈ ਸਭੁ ਕੋ ਉਪਰਿ ਸਚੁ ਆਚਾਰੁ ॥ 
Kaytay BanDhan Jee-a Kay Gurmukh Mokh Du-aar, Suchoh Oorai Sabh Ko Ooper Such Aachaar

There are so many entanglements for the soul. Only as Guru oriented do we find the Gate of Liberation. Truth is above all, and above Truth is Truthful conduct. -----Guru Nanak, Raag Sri, AGGS, Page 62-11
ਬੰਧਨ ਮਾਤ ਪਿਤਾ ਸੰਸਾਰਿ  
ਬੰਧਨ ਸੁਤ ਕੰਨਿਆ ਅਰੁ ਨਾਰਿ
ਬੰਧਨ ਕਰਮ ਧਰਮ ਹਉ ਕੀਆ
 ਬੰਧਨ ਪੁਤੁ ਕਲਤੁ ਮਨਿ ਬੀਆ  
ਬੰਧਨ ਕਿਰਖੀ ਕਰਹਿ ਕਿਰਸਾਨ
ਹਉਮੈ ਡੰਨੁ ਸਹੈ ਰਾਜਾ ਮੰਗੈ ਦਾਨ
ਬੰਧਨ ਸਉਦਾ ਅਣਵੀਚਾਰੀ
ਤਿਪਤਿ ਨਾਹੀ ਮਾਇਆ ਮੋਹ ਪਸਾਰੀ
ਬੰਧਨ ਸਾਹ ਸੰਚਹਿ ਧਨੁ ਜਾਇ  
ਬਿਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਭਗਤਿ ਨ ਪਵਈ ਥਾਇ
ਬੰਧਨ ਬੇਦੁ ਬਾਦੁ ਅਹੰਕਾਰ
 ਬੰਧਨਿ ਬਿਨਸੈ ਮੋਹ ਵਿਕਾਰ
ਨਾਨਕ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮ ਸਰਣਾਈ  
ਸਤਿਗੁਰਿ ਰਾਖੇ ਬੰਧੁ ਨ ਪਾਈ
Banḏẖan māṯ piṯā sansār. Banḏẖan suṯ kanniā ar nār. Banḏẖan karam ḏẖaram ha­o kī­ā. Banḏẖan puṯ kalaṯ man bī­ā. Banḏẖan kirkẖī karahi kirsān. Ha­umai dann sahai rājā mangai ḏān. Banḏẖan sa­uḏā aṇvīcẖārī. Ŧipaṯ nāhī mā­i­ā moh pasārī. Banḏẖan sāh saʼncẖeh ḏẖan jā­ė. Bin har bẖagaṯ na pav­ī thā­ė. Banḏẖan bėḏ bāḏ ahaʼnkār. Banḏẖan binsai moh vikār. Nānak rām nām sarṇā­ī. Saṯgur rākẖė banḏẖ na pā­ī.

People are entangled with the mother, the father and the world. They are entangled with sons, daughters and spouses. They are entangled with religious rituals, and religious faith, while acting with ego. They are entangled with the sons, the wives and the others in their minds. The farmers are entangled by farming. People suffer punishment in ego, and the God King exacts a penalty from them. They are entangled in trade without contemplation. They are not satisfied by attachment to the expanse of Maya. They are entangled with the wealth amassed by the bankers. Without devotion to God, they do not become acceptable. They are entangled with the Vedas, religious discussions and egotism. They are entangled, and perish in attachment and corruption. Nanak seeks the Sanctuary of God's Name. One who is saved by the True Guru (God), does not suffer entanglement. -----Guru Nanak, Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 416

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