The mortal has forgotten death



khaanaa peenaa hasnaa sa-unaa visar ga-I-aa hai marnaa.
Eating, drinking, laughing and sleeping, the mortal forgets about dying.
– Guru Nanak Dev Ji, SGGS 1254

Engrossed in the pleasures of life, man has completely forgotten that he is to die one day. Like the reflection in the water, so is our existence – it is temporary, it doesn’t last. We see in the reflection what we really are. The pleasures of this world are nothing but an illusion, Maya, which is a blindfold that keep the mortal separated from Waheguru. The only way to tear away the blindfold is through the Word of the Guru – Shabad.

Gurbani reveals to us what we are, what we are here in this worldly existence for and where we are headed. Many people, through their past lowly deeds, have no understanding what awaits them once their life is over. So they believe that this life is to be enjoyed as youth doesn’t last forever. They console themselves in thinking that the time to remember God is in old age. Many even think that belief in God is for the sick and old. So they think. By the time old age hits, the mortal’s body begins to give up – the teeth fall off, the ears and eyes lose their power and the bones begin to rattle. There is no way the body will co-operate with the soul at that time. That person, who has meditated on Waheguru from a young age, has accumulated the strength in the soul to keep the body going to the last breath. What can the starved soul do for the body when the body begins to whither? It’s too late by that time. Having wasted his life in eating, drinking, laughing, sleeping, the mortal’s body will one day finally crumble back to dust and the soul that was contained in it, sucked out by the Messengers of Death and dragged into the Court of Akaal where it’s fate is decided.

Little do we realise that we may be headed into the same fate, if we don’t awaken our slumbering conscience to the Eternal Truth – that we are here to earn a live of righteousness and to meditate on Waheguru. Even when we do our daily Nitnem, go to the Gurudwara regularly but do not live on the Word of the Guru, our fate will not lead us to the Eternal. According to our deeds, we will be judged and sent back into life. Until the soul realises it’s True Nature, it will wander in countless incarnations, of which human birth is the rarest. The human birth is the only life-form that gives the soul it’s chance to re-unite with Waheguru.

Gurbani is filled to over-flowing with the Treasures of Truth. If we concentrate on the meanings of what is contained with it’s Shabads and apply those Teachings in our life, our passage after death is taken care of by the True Guru. But those that are engrossed in the pleasures of the flesh and countless other vices, are only condemned into disaster. The life of a Gurmukh is the safe-passage to Waheguru. Such a Gurmukh does not get to see the oceans of fire that the ignorant souls face when they leave their mortal bodies. According to Gurbani, those oceans of fire have no horizon and the cries of the lost souls can be heard all around, with no solace or help in sight. Such will be the plight of the manmukhs.

We do not realise that enjoyment is a disease. Reflect on what Gurbani says that pain is the remedy, comforts are the disease. When we are happy, we tend to forget God, but when we get closer through suffering because that is when we get prayerful. As long as we consider materialism the true essence of life, we will continue to suffer. We suffer because we have forgotten Naam; and we have forgotten Naam because we have forgotten death. Thinking that he will live a long life, the mortal does not take God seriously. Those that remember their pending death will ever walk the Way of the Guru and become Gurmukh.

Being Gurmukh seems to spell doom for manmukhs – they think that that is the end to their fun and not enjoying life. One can still enjoy life and be Gurmukh – only there are boundaries that they cannot cross. Those that step beyond those boundaries, are led away from God. The day we realise that once this human life is over and that there is no telling if there will be another chance, the mortal will remember God and walk His Path.

Gurbani makes everything clear about our True Identity and defines what we need to do so that we may develop Love for Waheguru and make this human life worthwhile as we prepare a safe way towards merging into the Divine. We need to read and reflect on the teachings of Guru Granth Sahib Ji – this is our only chance to make amends for the soul to find it’s way back to God, and He has given us the power to choose which fate we want to make our own – that of merging into the Divine Light . . . or loosing the soul into darkness of no end, both here and beyond.


1 Comment

  1. Harkirat Kaur said,

    June 14, 2006 at 12:01 pm

    GurFateh Ji…

    How very true, just thinking back on the past week, I have been so stressed out due to my forthcoming exams that I’ve completely forgotten that on eof my duties is towards my Guru…do my Nitnem….

    Thanks for the eye-opener…
    Dhan Guru Naanak

    Vaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji Ki Fateh

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