Sukhmani Sahib Part 2
The Simran or recitation of Akal Purakh (The Timeless Being) is greater than all other religious rituals (Ashtapadi ;1,2,3)
Sukhmani Bani is a routine (nitnem) bani but it is not ritually recited as Asa di waar, Japuji Sahib, Rahiras, Kirtan Sohila, and Arti. The reason behind this is not known to me and I assume it is done because firstly it is a very long recitation and secondly it is not a bani that is used for awakening the masses that had fallen into the slumber of social degradation and oppression rather it is a guide to achieve the bliss of union with the Primal Lord (Akal Purakh). Asa di waar has been written by Guru Nanak ji at various periods and places and compiled by Guru Arjun Ji with all verses that have a similar central theme.
Though it is thematic but touches several socially relevant aspects that are different in nature from each other. The Sukhmani Sahib a creation of Guru Arjun Devji is a well thought, well versed with the buildup of a central theme that leads a person to achieve the blissful union with the Lord and building a personal development of character that is acceptable to Lord. This makes like-minded people come together and create a society that becomes God-oriented (Gurmukh).
The language of this bani is contemporary to Guruji’s time but he has made it easier to understand. With this beautiful poetry, he has created a congenial atmosphere to find solace for the soul that soothes senses and stops the wandering mind to look for anything else but One Primal Lord. Each Ashtapadi has eight verses and ten lines and sometimes interspersed with a shloka.
Sukhmani Sahib gives us glimpses of Guru Arjun Devji’s personality that he was extremely pious, gentle, and soft-spoken, without malice, a great visionary and social reformer who could create so much fear in his antagonists that they made him pay with his life. In his martyrdom, he leaves us a legacy of conviction and truthfulness to your purpose of life over your own life. A new tribe of people was being created that would fight for righteousness and justice until death.
He was a very worthy person to inherit Guru Nanak’s nascent revolution and to bring it to a very logical conclusion by compiling Guru Granth Sahib and giving the Sikhs a foundation to build upon it – a great religion that is secular, humanitarian and has the capacity to make bravest people.
He faced antagonism from the rulers and his own brothers but was never in fear of the situation and faced his martyrdom with all conviction of great and brave men of the history.
His Sukhmani Bani should not fall prey to a routine recitation to bring you in the company of people that recite like mantras without co-relating to the purpose that is why we shall examine each Ashtapadi to make a complete understanding.
Sukhmani Sahib Part 2 by Rajinder Kaur Johal
Rajinder Kaur Johal is an author of the Book “God is Universal“
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