In the thirty-ninth pauri
, the thirty-ninth step on the ladder, Guru Amardas shares with us that this Bani
(Utterances of infinite wisdom) is the eternal celebratory song. When sung in a body immersed in continuous remembrance of the Eternal One, that body becomes the true house and experiences bliss. Moving to the fortieth pauri, Guru Amardas advises us to listen to ‘Anand,’ O fortunate ones! All desires of the mind are fulfilled.
We pause, feeling the grace bestowed upon us as addressed fortunate beings; we are not asked to become fortunate as we already are. Guru Amardas emphasizes listening to the song of ultimate joy, the anand
; listen to the sound within—it takes care of all desires born out of the mind. Attaining the transcendent One, the Prabhu
, whatever else the other desires, our need to know will go. Prabhu, a name for IkOankar
(One Universal Integrative Force, 1Force, the One), represents the benevolent and majestic aspect of the Eternal One, capable of providing solace when no one else can. We pause, sensing the profound simplicity of needing nothing when we attain the Eternal One. All anxieties and worries of life that create sorrow, pain, and afflictions are removed; all the desires of the mind and beyond the realm of the mind’s capacity leave. Sorrows, diseases, and fevers also depart by listening to the eternal Bani—the eternal Utterances of the eternal Wisdom. The saintly and noble beings receive the ultimate joyous flavor of this bliss, the bliss given by the perfect Wisdom-Guru. Who are the saintly and noble beings? Guru Amardas refers to us as the fortunate, saintly, and noble beings. Those who listen to the Utterances become purified; those who speak the Utterances become pure of everything. They become filth-free. How? Because the Utterances are brimming with the eternal Wisdom. The eternal Wisdom pervades the Utterances. Seek sanctuary in the Wisdom-Guru; humbly seek the mentorship of the Wisdom-Guru. Those who establish this connection can perceive the music that transcends physical hearing and resonates without striking anything. This melody begins to play within because the inner self is brimming with bliss. The ethereal music, this sound, this voice, becomes audible when we enter the sanctuary of the Wisdom-Guru. Guru Amardas concludes this ladder step by reiterating that for those who attach themselves to the feet of the Guru, unstruck musical instruments resound in them.
We reflect as we stand on the threshold of the final step on the ladder. Throughout this entire composition, the words addressing us as fortunate, saintly, and noble beings have resonated deep within us. The revelation is profound: we, too, can immerse ourselves in this profound bliss. The idea of listening to the celestial melody resonating from within, a melody that requires no striking, stirs a deep emotion within us. We listen to the Anand Sahib composition in this physical realm because it is the Bani. Yet, a hope unfolds within us—when we truly hear it within, we will naturally realize we are the fortunate ones, and all the desires of our mind find fulfillment, healing physical ailments in their wake. This transformation occurs through the eternal Utterances of the Wisdom-Guru. Like a fragrant melody, these Utterances produce sweetness within us, a fragrance imparted by the complete Wisdom-Guru. Listening to the Utterances, we undergo purification, becoming pure, for the Utterances overflow with the eternal Wisdom. We reflect on how we are constantly and consistently being drawn towards the Utterances of the Wisdom-Guru, a magnetic force pulling us closer and closer. It is more than a journey; it is an emotional embrace. Stepping into the sanctuary of the Wisdom-Guru, we feel an inner congratulations resounding, accompanied by an overwhelming experience of vastness and bliss. The message that everything is in the Utterances of the Wisdom-Guru echoes loud and clear, touching our intellect and heart. There is no ambiguity in this. We ponder, could this be the reason why, in all Sikh ceremonies, we have adopted this? The stanza concluding our congregational gatherings holds hope that this divine spark could ignite within us, birthing a profound love for the Sabad
(Teaching in word and sound). In the historical context, when British India legally accepted the Sikh marriage, Sikhs named it the “Anand Marriage Act,” recognizing the sanctity and joy of union. Deep in our psyche, we acknowledge that there is something special with the word “Anand,” a word from the Wisdom-Guru, emanating from the Utterances. It is possible that many of us may have forgotten it; however, this profound bliss is fully captured in this composition, providing a roadmap to feeling this bliss. Can we be gentle with ourselves and embrace the idea that we are fortunate beings? We are not unfortunate. In this acknowledgment, can we give ourselves permission to feel and embrace the depth of this realization? Perhaps the reason why the eternal Utterances are not resounding within us is that we have not taken the mentoring of the Wisdom-Guru. This mentorship guides us to speak the Utterances, listen to the Utterances, recite the Utterances, and sing the Utterances to feel the ultimate joy, the ultimate bliss. Are we willing to step into the mentorship of the Wisdom-Guru? Are we courageous enough to embark on the ascent of this forty-step ladder to experience anand, the ultimate bliss in the symphony of our lives?
We may ask ourselves: In our daily pursuits, we exhibit remarkable dedication—achieving the elusive 10,000 steps, training rigorously for marathons, or indulging in rejuvenating spa experiences. Undoubtedly, these endeavors are pivotal for our physical well-being. Yet, amid these external commitments, we ought to pause and ask ourselves: Are we embracing a unique paradigm that includes dedicated care for our bodies and nurtures our internal well-being to embark on this fulfillment journey? The resonance of these steps isn’t merely in the physical exertion but in the profound exploration of our inner landscape.
Anand Sahib Summary
In the rhythmic cadence of Anand Sahib’s forty steps, Guru Amardas tenderly guides us, the seekers, toward the crescendo of ultimate bliss. This odyssey is a pilgrimage through surrender, devotion, and the landscapes of wisdom. With each step, we sense a profound connection between life’s celebration and the Eternal One—a stirring call to transcend mere expression and immerse ourselves in the divine manifestation of grace within the sacred abode of our bodies. Singing within this symphony is more than expression; it transforms into a divine manifestation of grace. Guru Amardas invites reflection, revealing that the often-proclaimed bliss can genuinely be known through the Wisdom-Guru. The joy depicted in Anand Sahib is not a fleeting pleasure tied to sensory preferences but a perpetual, eternal bliss transcending the limitations of the mortal realm. This elevated state is reserved for those who become wisdom-oriented.
A profound realization unfolds—the Eternal One is not a distant abstraction but the intimate Spouse of all, a steadfast companion on our journey of existence. The intrinsic value of connecting through the Wisdom-Guru is unveiled, not merely as knowledge but as a treasure paving the way to eternal bliss.
The Wisdom-Guru emerges as a guiding star, revealing the transformative power inherent in devotion, surrender, and detachment. The verses reverberate a deep, stirring call, inviting us to embark on an inner pilgrimage—a journey beyond the physical, resonating with the eternal melody of the Sabad (Teaching in word and sound). It’s more than a physical journey; it’s a sojourn. Addressed as saintly beings, we are called to speak only the narrative of the Eternal One, acknowledging the challenge of describing the limitless form of the Eternal One. The immortal elixir “amrit" bestowed through the grace of the Wisdom-Guru infuses the Eternal One into our minds, dissolving doubts and confusion. A state of grace emerges, not through personal endeavor but as the fruit of divine grace.
Anand Sahib is an intimate exploration from self to the Self, from the transient to the Eternal. Its revelations underscore the significance of inner metamorphosis, urging us, the seekers, to surrender, detach from the illusory entanglements of the material world, and attune our beings to the eternal Wisdom permeating the cosmos. In Anand Sahib, we, the seekers, discover enduring joy and profound fulfillment echoing within the silent chambers of our hearts.