Mool Mantar Of The True Guru
“That homogenous supreme reality (God) first was written as numeral one (in mool mantar)and then He was incribed as Ura syllable of Gurmukhi, further pronounced as Oangkar. Then He was called Satnam, the truth by name Kartapurakh, the creator Lord, Nirbhau, the fearless one, and Nirvair, without rancour. Then emerging as the timeless Akal Moorat to be called as unborn and self-existent. Realised through the grace of the Guru, the divine preceptor, the current of this primeval truth (God) has continuously been moving since before the beginning and throughout the ages. He is verily the truth and will continue to be the truth forever. The true Guru has made available (for me) the glimpse of this truth. One who merging his consciousness in the Word establishes a relationship of Guru and disciple, only that disciple devoting himself to the Guru and progressing from worldiness attunes his consciousness in and with the Lord. The gurmukhs have had a glimpse of imperceptible Lord who is the fruit of delights.” (www.khalsanet.org)
The Mool Mantar
Ik Onkaar - The One God, the Absolute Reality
Satnaam - Whose name is Truth
Kartaa - The Creator
Purakh - Present in all creation
Nirbhau - Without Fear
Nirvair - Without vengence or anger
Akaal Moorat - of Eternal Form
Ajuni" " Unborn
Saibangh - self-Illumined
Gurparsaad - Attainable through the Grace of the Guru
“The Mool Mantar (also spelt Mul Mantra) is the most important composition contained within the Sri Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikhs; it is the basis of Sikhism. The word"Mool" means"main",” root"or"chief“And"Mantar"means"magic chant" or"magic portion.”
Together the words"Mool Mantar"mean the"Main chant"or"root verse.” It's importance is emphasised by the fact that it is the first composition to appear in the holy Granth of the Sikhs and that it appears before the commencement of the main section which comprises of 31 Raags or chapters.
The Mool Mantar is said to be the first composition uttered by Guru Nanak Dev upon enlightenment at the age of about 30. Being the basis of Sikhism it encapsulates the entire theology of Sikhism. When a person begins to learn Gurbani, this is the first verse that most would learn.
It is a most brief composition encompassing the entire universally complex theology of the Sikh faith. It has religious, social, political, logical, martial and eternal implication for human existence; a truly humanitarian and global concepts of the Supreme power for all to understand and appreciate.
This Mantar encompasses concepts which have been evaluated and proven over many eras (or yugs) and known to be flawless beyond any ambiguity what so ever. The rest of Japji Sahib that follows this mantar is said to be a elaboration of the main mantar and that the rest of the Guru Granth Sahib totalling 1430 pages, is a detailed amplification of the Mool Mantar.
This is the verse that all beginners to Sikhism have to learn and repeat over and over again until it becomes an automatic process. After learning this short verse and its full meaning, it is common for beginners to awake early in the morning, wash and sit and mediate on the Mantar for 10 to 20 minutes focussing on the sound and meaning of each word.
It is said that the rest of the Guru Granth Sahib is an elaboration of the Mool Mantar and that this Mantar itself is an explanation and amplification of the single phrase Ek Oankaar, which is the first entry in the holy Granth.”
SikhiWiki, the Sikh Encyclopedia
The Sikhs: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices
Cole, W. Owen; Sambhi, Piara Singh
“The search for God might be the consequence of dissatisfaction or of 'meeting the Guru'. Someone may succeed in the moral struggle, in the practice of asceticism, in visiting pilgrimage centres or mastering the Vedas or philosophical systems and yet be aware that something is still missing. On the other hand, it may be that without conscious effort, perhaps as a result of karma, someone hears the voice of God and the latent divinity is activated so that release is obtained. At this point we come to the difficult concept of the grace of God. The problem sometimes exists for the western reader who may already be aware that the word has a Christian context, and even if he has not studied Pauline theology he knows something of the term because of its popular usage. A word used in the Adi Granth that is translated as 'grace' is 'nadar', which has to do with 'sight'. Sikhism is above all else a particular kind of guru cult and it might help to consider a similar word to 'nadar', 'darshan', the Guru's glance, as we may try to understand grace.
India is a land of villages, pilgrimage places and gurus. Almost every day there is some local festival, some holy man whose anniversary is being commemorated and in many villages there is a guru to whom people turn for enlightenment and guidance. Some of the gurus become famous beyond the locality and the roads to their teaching centres are busy with travelers.
Others have only local reputations and are visited by a small but steady trickle of devotees. Outside the guru's home the faithful and the hopeful will sit and wait for him to appear (most gurus are male). He may be away from the village in which case they will remain until his return. When he does appear there need be no words, merely a benign look of acceptance that is enough to convey a blessing. That glance is darshan. It is this that Sikhism has in mind when it speaks of God's grace. God is the supreme Guru. Experience teaches that some people make the hard journey of asceticism or moral effort but do not receive this glance of acceptance. Others with but little struggle are not only smiled upon, they are initiated into the close fellowship of disciples. Acceptance or rejection is not arbitrary or the result of some quixotic impulse; the person who sought darshan and was refused it may be disappointed but the guru knows best. Even the disappointment is a pronouncement. It may be that the seeker must try harder, is being tested, is not yet ready for enlightenment. 'Baba knows everything'; even that the time for release may not be in the present life; perhaps the next birth will bring acceptance. One thing is certain; the hopeful pilgrim believes that the guru is necessary for liberation. With this concept of guruship in mind it may be possible to understand such apparently harsh sayings as:
All bounties come from God. No one can claim them as a matter of right. Some who are awake do not receive them, others are roused from their slumbers to be blessed. (AG 85)
Good actions may procure a better existence, but liberation comes only from grace. (AG 2)
God cannot be understood or realized through cleverness (AG 221)
God cannot be won through rites or deeds. Learning cannot give help in comprehending the Divine. The Vedas and eighteen Puranas have also failed to reveal the mystery. Only the True Guru has revealed the one to me. (AG 155)
In Sikhism grace is the word which describes the way in which God focuses attention upon a person. No one is ever beyond God's care; God 'takes care of everything, though remaining invisible' (AG 7).
Even to those how have not found God there is knowledge through dissatisfaction:
You are clearly present in the world because all crave for your Name. (AG 71)
Grace is the means by which this longing is met. It is the special notice which God takes of someone. It can even be a glance of disapproval but then its consequences are disastrous: 'A displeasing glance from God reduces even monarchs to straw' (AG 472).
In the Japji Guru Nanak describes the five stages of human development. The first is the region or stage of piety (Dharam Khand). This is the realm into which all humans are born. They may practise devotion and so reach the realm of knowledge (Gian Khand) in which they become aware of the vastness of the universe and the mystery of existence. The seeker may progress further, to the realm of effort (Saram Khand). In this stage mind and intellect become perfected or attuned to God. A person has now gone as far as possible in developing natural gifts. The stage of grace (Karam Khand) is only possible with the help of spiritual strength, which comes from God. Help to enter this realm is willingly given by the loving God.
It is the region in which only the great saints (bhagats) live in divine bliss.
In the realm of grace spiritual power is supreme, nothing else avails. Brave and strong warriors in whom divine spirit lives dwell there, those who are blended with the One by songs of praise. Their beauty is beyond description, the Divine Being lives in their hearts. They do not die and are not deceived. The congregations of the blessed live there too. They dwell in bliss with the True One in their hearts. (AG 8)
Grace in Sikhism has therefore a number of meanings. It is the glance which a Guru bestows upon the disciple denoting acceptance and conveying a blessing. It is also a glance which liberates the devotee in such a way that the efforts which were once taken to win recognition are now acts of loving service. Grace also transforms the disciple from being a hopeful seeker to being someone who has found the meaning of personal existence and is now at ease and at peace, having realized God.
However, Karam Khand is not the last region; there is Sach Khand, the region of truth where God exists in a formless state. It cannot be described, only experienced by the liberated soul.
In the realm of truth dwells the formless One who having created, watches over creation, looking upon them with grace. People live in bliss. There a world upon world, form upon form. All have their functions as God's will [hukam] ordains. God sees creation and seeing it rejoices. To describe it is hard, hard as steel to the hand. (AG 8).
Guru Nanak was acutely aware of the paradoxes which are part of life, of seeking for God but not finding, of striving but not being satisfied, of knowing that God is latent in everyone, yet many are unaware of how to become God-realized. The solution lay in the Indian concept of guruship which Guru Nanak accepted but interpreted in his own particular way. Two passages sum up both the paradox and the solution:
Inside you is the royal throne from which justice is dispensed. By the shabad we discover God's home is inside us (AG 1092); Without the grace and guidance of the Guru we cannot know the essence of the truth, the unfathomable God lives in everyone. (AG 1093).
Guru Nanak was also practical and we must turn not only to the concept of liberation but to the techniques which Sikhism advocates for attaining liberation.”
The Sikhs: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices
Cole, W. Owen; Sambhi, Piara Singh, 1973, pages 79-82
Sussex Academic Press
The Three Meanings of Atman - Parabrahman, Brahman and brahman
"Ultimately there is only one Self, the supreme Self, which is manifested at different levels of reality. First of all, the Paramatman, the Supreme Self, can be conceived as beyond all word and all thought. It is the ultimate transcendent mystery. Secondly, the atman can be conceived as the source of all reality, the source of all creation, of consciousness and of human existence. Thirdly, the same atman can be conceived as indwelling in each person, each thing. In each one of us the One, the Supreme Spirit, is dwelling. That Supreme Spirit dwelling in me is my higher Self. These three senses are fundamental. The absolute Supreme, beyond everything, the 'Parabrahman' or 'Paramatman', then the brahman or atman as the source of everything, the creator Spirit, and then the atman or brahman manifested in every person in every thing, the indwelling Self. That is my higher Self and it is ultimately one with the Supreme.”
The One Light - Bede Griffiths' Principal Writings
Templegate Publishers, 2001, p. 204
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