The Master is the Strength of the Weak

Should the All-Encompassing Eternal One come into their awareness, They shall receive An immovable kingdom.(2).

Shabd to Challenge Hopelessness

Guru Arjun Dev Ji

The following is an interpretive translation of Gurbani which Ek Ong Kar Kaur is known for. More translations of Japji, Anand Sahib and Sukhmani Sahib can be found here

ਸਿਰੀਰਾਗੁ ਮਹਲਾ 5 ॥ (70-6)

Composed in Siree Raag, SGGS Page 70, Line 6

ਜਾ ਕਉ ਮੁਸਕਲੁ ਅਤਿ ਬਣੈ ਢੋਈ ਕੋਇ ਨ ਦੇਇ ॥ 

Jaa ka-o muskal at banai dho-ee ko-ay na day-ay.

For those who, in extreme difficulty, Find they have no place to go.

ਲਾਗੂ ਹੋਏ ਦੁਸਮਨਾ ਸਾਕ ਭਿ ਭਜਿ ਖਲੇ ॥

Laagoo ho-ay dusmanaa saak bhe bhaj khalay.

With enemies in pursuit And even family abandoning them where they stand.

ਸਭੋ ਭਜੈ ਆਸਰਾ ਚੁਕੈ ਸਭੁ ਅਸਰਾਉ ॥

Sabho bhajai aasraa chukai sabhasraa-o.

When all reinforcements have run away, And all support has failed,

ਚਿਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਓਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਲਗੈ ਨ ਤਤੀ ਵਾਉ ॥1॥ 

Aavai os Paarbarahm lagai na tatee vaa-o. ||1||

Should the All-Encompassing Eternal One come into their awareness, Then the blistering winds Will not touch them. (1)

ਨਿਤਾਣਿਆ ਕਾ ਤਾਣੁ ॥

Saahib nitaani-aa kaa taan.

The Master is the strength of the weak

ਆਇ ਨ ਜਾਈ ਥਿਰੁ ਸਦਾ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦੀ ਸਚੁ ਜਾਣੁ ॥1॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥

Aa-ay na jaa-ee thir sadaa gur sabdee sach jaan. ||1|| Rahaa-o.

Ever-present, never departing, Forever steadfast. Know this Ultimate Reality Through the wisdom of the Sound Current that cuts the ego. (1) Pay attention.

ਜੇ ਕੋ ਹੋਵੈ ਦੁਬਲਾ ਨੰਗ ਭੁਖ ਕੀ ਪੀਰ ॥

Jay ko hovai dublaa nang bhukh kee peer.

For those who are weak, Naked and ashamed, Trapped by hunger’s pain

ਦਮੜਾ ਪਲੈ ਨਾ ਪਵੈ ਨਾ ਕੋ ਦੇਵੈ ਧੀਰ ॥

Damrhaa palai naa pavai naa ko dayvai dheer.

Possessing no wealth, With no one to offer sustenance,

ਸੁਆਰਥੁ ਸੁਆਉ ਨ ਕੋ ਕਰੇ ਨਾ ਕਿਛੁ ਹੋਵੈ ਕਾਜੁ ॥

Su-aarath su-aa-o na ko karay naa kichh hovai kaaj.

Unable to act on their own behalf And none of their efforts succeed,

ਚਿਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਓਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁਤਾ ਨਿਹਚਲੁ ਹੋਵੈ ਰਾਜੁ ॥2॥

Chit aavai os paarbarahm taa nihchal hovai raaj. ||2||

Should the All-Encompassing Eternal One come into their awareness, They shall receive An immovable kingdom. (2).

ਜਾ ਕਉ ਚਿੰਤਾ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਦੇਹੀ ਵਿਆਪੈ ਰੋਗੁ ॥

Jaa ka-o chintaa bahut bahut dayhee vi-aapai rog.

For those who suffer from extreme anxiety, With bodies consumed by disease,

੍ਰਿਗਸਤਿ ਕੁਟੰਬਿ ਪਲੇਟਿਆ ਕਦੇ ਹਰਖੁ ਕਦੇ ਸੋਗੁ ॥ 

Garisat kutamb palayti-aa kaday harakh kaday sog.

Living at home with their families, Alternating between cheer and grief,

ਗਉਣੁ ਕਰੇ ਚਹੁ ਕੁੰਟ ਕਾ ਘੜੀ ਨ ਬੈਸਣੁ ਸੋਇ ॥ 

Ga-on karay chahu kunt kaa gharhee na baisan so-ay.

For those who wander the four corners of the earth Never finding a place of rest,

ਚਿਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਓਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਤਨੁ ਮਨੁ ਸੀਤਲੁ ਹੋਇ ॥3॥

Chit aavai os paarbarahm tan man seetal ho-ay. ||3||

Should the All-Encompassing Eternal One come into their awareness, Then relief will soothe their bodies and minds. (3).

ਕਾਮਿ ਕਰੋਧਿ ਮੋਹਿ ਵਸਿ ਕੀਆ ਕਿਰਪਨ ਲੋਭਿ ਪਿਆਰੁ ॥

Kaam karoDh mohi vas kee-aa kirpan lobh pi-aar.

For those who dwell in the state of anger, attachment and sensual desire, Who live as a miser, absorbed in their greed.

ਚਾਰੇ ਕਿਲਵਿਖ ਉਨਿ ਅਘ ਕੀਏ ਹੋਆ ਅਸੁਰ ਸੰਘਾਰੁ ॥

Chaaray kilvikh un agh kee-ay ho-aa asur sanghaar.

Those who act in socially despicable ways,(i) Who become destructive as a demon,

ਪੋਥੀ ਗੀਤ ਕਵਿਤ ਕਿਛੁ ਕਦੇ ਨ ਕਰਨਿ ਧਰਿਆ ॥ 

Pothee geet kavit kichh kaday na karan Dhari-aa.

Who never sing a sacred song, Nor focus on a work of spiritual poetry,

ਚਿਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਓਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਤਾ ਨਿਮਖ ਸਿਮਰਤ ਤਰਿਆ ॥4॥ 

Chit aavai os paarbarahm taa nimakh simrat tari-aa. ||4||

Should the All-Encompassing Eternal One come into their awareness, Then their minds will align with their Divine Identity, And they shall instantly swim across. (4).

ਸਾਸਤ ਸਿੰ੍ਰਿਮਤਿ ਬੇਦ ਚਾਰਿ ਮੁਖਾਗਰ ਬਿਚਰੇ ॥

Saasat simrit bayd chaar mukhaagar bichray.

There are those who can discuss by heart The four great spiritual books,

ਤਪੇ ਤਪੀਸਰ ਜੋਗੀਆ ਤੀਰਥਿ ਗਵਨੁ ਕਰੇ ॥

Tapay tapeesar jogee-aa tirath gavan karay.

Or who practice the yogic techniques Of self-purification through the inner heat. There are those who wander, taking sacred baths

ਖਟੁ ਕਰਮਾ ਤੇ ਦੁਗੁਣੇ ਪੂਜਾ ਕਰਤਾ ਨਾਇ ॥

Khat karma tay dugunai poojaa kartaa naa-ay.

Who double their efforts in ritual action(ii) To worship the Creator’s Identity,

ਰੰਗੁ ਨ ਲਗੀ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮ ਤਾ ਸਰਪਰ ਨਰਕੇ ਜਾਇ ॥5॥ 

Rang na lagee paarbarahm taa sarpar narkayjaa-ay. ||5||

Yet should they never feel a touch of love For the All-Encompassing Eternal One, Then their awareness will surely End up in hell. (5)

ਰਾਜ ਮਿਲਕ ਸਿਕਦਾਰੀਆ ਰਸ ਭੋਗਣ ਬਿਸਥਾਰ ॥

Raaj milak sikdaaree-aa ras bhogan bisthaar.

There are those who rule kingdoms of wealth, Expansive and drenched in pleasure,

ਬਾਗ ਸੁਹਾਵੇ ਸੋਹਣੇ ਚਲੈ ਹੁਕਮੁ ਅਫਾਰ ॥

Baag suhaavay sohnay chalai hukam afaar.

With delightful, luscious gardens, Proudly living by their own commands,

ਰੰਗ ਤਮਾਸੇ ਬਹੁ ਬਿਧੀ ਚਾਇ ਲਗਿ ਰਹਿਆ ॥ 

Rang tamaasay baho biDhee chaa-ay lag rahi-aa.

Enjoying different spectacles, And enchantments of many types,

ਚਿਤਿ ਨ ਆਇਓ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਤਾ ਸਰਪ ਕੀ ਜੂਨਿ ਗਇਆ ॥6॥

Chit na aa-i-o paarbarahm taa sarap kee joon ga-i-aa. ||6||

Yet should the All-Encompassing Eternal One never come into their awareness, They will depart and assume the life of a snake. (6)

ਬਹੁਤੁ ਧਨਾਢਿ ਅਚਾਰਵੰਤੁ ਸੋਭਾ ਨਿਰਮਲ ਰੀਤਿ ॥

Bahut Dhanaadh achaarvant sobhaa nirmal reet

There are those who possess tremendous riches, Good conduct and spotless manners,

ਮਾਤ ਪਿਤਾ ਸੁਤ ਭਾਈਆ ਸਾਜਨ ਸੰਗਿ ਪਰੀਤਿ ॥

Maat pitaa sut bhaa-ee-aa saajan sang pareet.

Living affectionately in fellowship With their mother, father, children and siblings,

ਲਸਕਰ ਤਰਕਸਬੰਦ ਬੰਦ ਜੀਉ ਜੀਉ ਸਗਲੀ ਕੀਤ ॥

Laskar tarkasband band jee-o jee-o saglee keet.

There are those towards whom military platoons All constantly pay their respects,

ਚਿਤਿ ਨ ਆਇਓ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਤਾ ਖੜਿ ਰਸਾਤਲਿ ਦੀਤ ॥7॥

Chit na aa-i-o paarbarahm taa kharh rasaatal deet. ||7||

Yet should the All-Encompassing Eternal One never come into their awareness, Then their consciousness will be consigned to the Underworld. (7)

ਕਾਇਆ ਰੋਗੁ ਨ ਛਿਦ੍ਰੁ  ̈ਕਿਛੁ ਨਾ ਕਿਛੁ ਕਾੜਾ ਸੋਗੁ ॥

Kaa-i-aa rog na chhidar kichh naa kichh kaarhaa sog.

There are those who possess bodies with no blemish or disease,

ਮਿਰਤੁ ਨ ਆਵੀ ਚਿਤਿ ਤਿਸੁ ਅਹਿਨਿਸਿ ਭੋਗੈ ਭੋਗੁ ॥ 

Mirat na aavee chit tis ahinis bhogai bhog.

Undisturbed by worry or grief, Unperturbed by death, Indulging in revelries day and night,

ਸਭ ਕਿਛੁ ਕੀਤੋਨੁ ਆਪਣਾ ਜੀਇ ਨ ਸੰਕ ਧਰਿਆ ॥

Sabh kichh keeton aapnaa jee-ay na sank Dhari-aa.

Doing everything on their own with no doubts to block the way,

ਚਿਤਿ ਨ ਆਇਓ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਜਮਕੰਕਰ ਵਸਿ ਪਰਿਆ ॥8॥ 

Chit na aa-i-o paarbarahm jamkankar vas pari-aa. ||8||

Yet should the All-Encompassing Eternal One Never enter their awareness, They will fall into the abode of Death. (8)

ਕਿਰਪਾ ਕਰੇ ਜਿਸੁ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮੁ ਹੋਵੈ ਸਾਧੂ ਸੰਗੁ ॥

Kirpaa karay jis paarbarahm hovai saaDhoo sang.

Through the kindness of the All-Encompassing Eternal One, People come into the community of those who live By purity, grace and discipline,

ਜਿਉ ਜਿਉ ਓਹੁ ਵਧਾਈਐ ਤਿਉ ਤਿਉ ਹਰਿ ਸਿਉ ਰੰਗੁ ॥

Ji-o ji-o oh vaDhaa-ee-ai ti-o ti-o har si-o rang.

And as their experience of higher consciousness Grows stronger and stronger, Just so do they find the love of the Divine Essence.

ਦੁਹਾ ਸਿਰਿਆ ਕਾ ਖਸਮੁ ਆਪਿ ਅਵਰੁ ਨ ਦੂਜਾ ਥਾਉ ॥ 

Duhaa siri-aa kaa khasam aap avar na doojaa thaa-o.

Duality originates with the Divine Husband, Himself, There is no other ground.

ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਤੁਠੈ ਪਾਇਆ ਨਾਨਕ ਸਚਾ ਨਾਉ ॥9॥1॥26॥ 

Satgur tuthai paa-i-aa Naanak sachaa naa-o ||9||1||26||

When the Teacher of Truth feels satisfied, Naanak recognizes his Transcendent Identity. (9)

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Endnotes: 

(i) The original Gurmukhi line, “Chaaray Kilvikh” refers to the four terrible acts in the traditional Hindu society

(ii) “Khat Karanay” refers to the six ritual actions

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