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After a short stay with the holy men with whom he had recently been consorting, the Guru, in company with Mardana, proceeded to Saiyidpur, the present city of Eminabad, in the Gujranwala district of the Panjab. Nanak and his companion took shelter in the house of Lalo, a carpenter. When dinner was ready, Lalo informed the Guru, and asked him to eat it within sacred lines.[1] The Guru said, 'The whole earth is my sacred lines, and he who loveth truth is pure. Wherefore remove doubt from thy mind.' On this Lalo served dinner, and the Guru ate it where he was seated. After two days the Guru desired to take his departure, but was prevailed on by Lalo to make a longer stay. The Guru consented, but soon found himself an object of obloquy because he, the son of a Khatri, abode in the house of a Sudar. After a fortnight, Malik Bhago, steward of the Pathan who owned Saiyidpur, gave a great feast, to which Hindus of all four castes were invited. A Brahman went and told the Guru that, as all the four castes had been invited, he too should partake of Malik Bhago's bounty. The Guru replied, 'I belong not to any of the four castes; why am I invited?' The Brahman replied, 'It is on this account people call thee a heretic. Malik Bhago will be displeased with thee for refusing his hospitality.' On this the Brahman went away, and

[1. Enclosures, generally smeared with cow-dung to make them holy, within which Hindus pray and cook their food.]

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Malik Bhago fed his guests, but the Guru was not among them.

When subsequently Malik Bhago heard of the Guru's absence from the feast, he ordered him to be produced. Bhago inquired why he had not responded to his invitation. The Guru replied, that he was a faqir who did not desire dainty food, but if his eating from the hands of Malik Bhago afforded that functionary any gratification, he would not be found wanting. Malik Bhago was not appeased, but charged the Guru, who was the son of a Khatri, while refusing to attend his feast, with dining with the low-caste Lalo. Upon this the Guru asked Malik Bhago for his share, and at the same time requested Lalo to bring him bread from his house. When both viands arrived, the Guru took Lalo's coarse bread in his right hand and Malik Bhago's dainty bread in his left, and squeezed them both. It is said that from Lalo's bread there issued milk, and from Malik Bhago's, blood. The meaning was that Lalo's bread had been obtained by honest labour and was pure, while Malik Bhago's had been obtained by bribery and oppression and was therefore impure. The Guru hesitated not to accept the former.

After this the Guru and Mardana proceeded to a solitary forest, nowhere entering a village or tarrying on the bank of a river. On the way they were overtaken by hunger, and Mardana complained. The Guru directed him to go straight on and enter a village where the Upal Khatris dwelt. He had only to stand in silence at the doors of their houses, when Hindus and Musalmans would come to do him homage, and not only supply him with food, but bring carpets and spread them before him to tread on. Mardana did as he had been directed, and succeeded in his errand.

Mardana subsequently received an order to go to another village. He there also received great homage. {p. 45} The villagers came and fell at his feet, and offered him large presents of money[1] and clothes. These he tied up in bundles and took to the Guru. On seeing them the Guru laughed, and asked Mardana what he had brought. He answered that the villagers had made him large presents of money and clothes, and he thought that he would bring them to his master. The Guru replied that they did not belong to either of them. Mardana inquired how he was to dispose of them. The Guru told him to throw them away, an order which he at once obeyed. The Guru explained to him the disastrous effects of offerings on laymen. 'Offerings are like poison and cannot be digested. They can only bring good by fervent adoration of God at all hours. When man performeth scant worship and dependeth on offerings for his subsistence, the effect on him is as if he had taken poison.'

The Guru and Mardana are said to have visited a notorious robber called Shaikh Sajjan. With extreme impartiality he had built for his Hindu guests a temple, and for his Muhammadan guests a mosque; and he otherwise ostensibly provided them with everything necessary for their comfort. His hospitality, however, was as false as that of the famous Greek robber, Procrustes. When night came on, Sajjan dismissed his guests to sleep. He then threw them into a well in which they perished. Next morning he took up a pilgrim's staff and rosary, and spread out a carpet to pray in the true spirit of an ancient Pharisee. Shaikh Sajjan, seeing the Guru, interpreted the look of spiritual satisfaction on his countenance into a consciousness of worldly wealth, and expected much profit from such a windfall. He as usual invited his guests to go to sleep. The Guru asked permission to recite a hymn to God, and having obtained it, repeated the following:--

[1. Literally--twenty-fives, because it used to be the Indian custom to count money in heaps of twenty-five each.]

{p. 46}

Bronze is bright and shining, but, by rubbing, its sable blackness appeareth,
Which cannot be removed even by washing a hundred times.
They are friends I who travel with me as I go along,
And who are found standing ready whenever their accounts are called for.
Houses, mansions, palaces painted on all sides,
When hollow within, are as it were crumbled and useless.
Herons arrayed in white dwell at places of pilgrimage;
Yet they rend and devour living things, and therefore should not be called white.[2]
My body is like the simmal tree;[3] men beholding me mistake me.[4]
Its fruit is useless: such qualities my body possesseth.
I am a blind man carrying a burden while the mountainous[5] way is long.
I want eyes which I cannot get; how can I ascend and traverse the journey?
Of what avail are services, virtues, and cleverness?
Nanak, remember the Name, so mayest thou be released from thy shackles.[6]

Shaikh Sajjan, on hearing this warning and heart-searching hymn, came to his right understanding. He knew that all the faults were his own, which the Guru had attributed to himself. Upon this he made

[1. The name Sajjan also means friend. There is here a pun on the word.

2. The heron, though white, has a black heart.

3. The Bombax heplaphyllum. It bears no fruit in the true sense of the word. Its pods yield cotton, which is unfit for textile purposes. Its wood is very brittle, and almost useless for carpentry.

4. Like birds which peck at what they suppose to be the fruit of the simmal tree, but find none. The gyânis exercise their ingenuity on this line, and translate--The parrots (mai jan) looking at it make a mistake.

5. Dûgar, thence the tribe of Dogras in the Kângra and adjacent districts. Dogra literally means hillman.

6. Sûhi.]

{p. 47}

him obeisance, kissed his feet, and prayed him to pardon his sins. Then the Guru said, 'Shaikh Sajjan, at the throne of God grace is obtained by two things, open confession and reparation for wrong.' Shaikh Sajjan asked him to perform for him those things by which sins were forgiven and grace obtained. Then the Guru's heart was touched, and he asked him to truly state how many murders he had committed. Shaikh Sajjan admitted along catalogue of the most heinous crimes. The Guru asked him to produce all the property of his victims that he had retained in his possession. The Shaikh did so, whereupon the Guru told him to give it all to the poor. He obeyed the mandate, and became a follower of the Guru after receiving charanpahul.[1] It is said that the first Sikh temple[2] was constructed on the spot where this conversation had been held.

The Guru, hearing of a religious fair at Kurkhetar near Thanesar, in the present district of Ambala, on the occasion of a solar eclipse desired to visit it with the object of preaching to the assembled pilgrims. Needing refreshment, he began to cook a deer which a disciple had presented to him. The Brahmans expressed their horror at his use of flesh, upon which he replied:--

Man is first conceived in flesh, he dwelleth in flesh.
When he quickeneth, he obtaineth a mouth of flesh his bone, skin, and body are made of flesh.

[1. Also called charanâmrit. This was a form of initiation by drinking the water in which the Guru's feet had been washed. The preamble of the Japji was read at the same time. The ceremony was inaugurated by Guru Nânak.

2. Dharmsâl. In modern times this word means a charitable rest-house where the Granth Sahib is kept and divine worship held, where travellers obtain free accommodation, and children receive religious instruction. A temple at a place visited by a Guru is now called Gurdwâra.

3. The ancient Kurukshetra, the scene of the great battle between the Pandavs and Kauravs. In Hindu books it is called the Navel of the earth, and it is held that worldly beings were there created. Khulâsat-ul-Tawârikh.]

{p. 48}

When he is taken out of the womb, he seizeth teats of flesh.
His mouth is of flesh, his tongue is of flesh, his breath is in flesh.
When he groweth up he marrieth, and bringeth flesh home with him.
Flesh is produced from flesh; all man's relations are made from flesh.
By meeting the true Guru and obeying God's order, everybody shall go right.
If thou suppose that man shall be saved by himself, he shall not; Nanak, it is idle to say so.

The following is also on the same subject:--

Fools wrangle about flesh, but know not divine knowledge or meditation on God.
They know not what is flesh, or what is vegetable, or in what sin consisteth.
It was the custom of the gods to kill rhinoceroses, roast them and feast.
They who forswear flesh and hold their noses when near it, devour men at night.
They make pretences to the world, but they know not divine knowledge or meditation. on God.
Nanak, why talk to a fool? He cannot reply or understand what is said to him.
He who acteth blindly is blind; he hath no mental eyes.
Ye were produced from the, blood of your parents, yet ye eat not fish or flesh.
When man and woman meet at night and cohabit,
A foetus is conceived from flesh; we are vessels of flesh.
O Brahman, thou knowest not divine knowledge or meditation on God, yet thou callest thyself clever.
Thou considerest the flesh that cometh from abroad[1] bad, O my lord, and the flesh of thine own home good.
All animals have sprung from flesh, and the soul taketh its abode in flesh.

[1. The flesh of animals.]

{p. 49}

They whose guru is blind, eat things that ought not to be eaten, and abstain from what ought to be eaten.
In flesh we are conceived, from flesh we are born; we are vessels of flesh.
O Brahman, thou knowest not divine knowledge or meditation on God, yet thou callest thyself clever.
Flesh is allowed in the Purans, flesh is allowed in the books of the Musalmans, flesh hath been used in the four ages.
Flesh adorneth sacrifice and marriage functions; flesh hath always been associated with them.
Women, men, kings, and emperors spring from flesh.
If they appear to you to be going to hell, then accept not their offerings.
See how wrong it would be that givers should go to hell and receivers to heaven.
Thou understandest not thyself, yet thou instructest others; O Pandit, thou art very wise![1]
O Pandit, thou knowest not from what flesh hath sprung.
Corn, sugar-cane, and cotton are produced from water;[2] from water the three worlds are deemed to have sprung.
Water saith, 'I am good in many ways'; many are the modifications of water.
If thou abandon the relish of such things, thou shalt be superhuman, saith Nanak deliberately.[3]

The Guru succeeded in making many converts at Kurkhetar. When departing, he thus addressed his Sikhs: 'Live in harmony, utter the Creator's name, and if any one salute you therewith, return his salute with the addition true, and say "Sat Kartar ", the True Creator, in reply. There are four ways by which, with the repetition of God's name, men may reach Him. The first is holy companionship, the second truth, the third contentment, and the fourth restraint of the senses. By whichsoever of these

[1. Said ironically.

2 Water assists the growth of vegetables, and on vegetables animals are fed.

3 Mâlar ki Wâr.]

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doors a man entereth, whether he be a hermit or a householder, he shall find God.'

The Guru next visited Hardwar in pursuance of his mission. A great crowd was assembled from the four cardinal points for the purpose of washing away their sins. The Guru saw that, while they were cleansing their bodies, their hearts remained filthy; and none of them restrained the wanderings of his mind or performed his ablutions with love and devotion. While they were throwing water towards the east for the manes of their ancestors, the Guru went among them, and, putting his hands together so as to form a cup, began to throw water towards the west, and continued to do so until a large crowd had gathered round him. Men in their astonishment began to inquire what he was doing, and whether he was a Hindu or Muhammadan. If the latter, why had he come to a Hindu place of pilgrimage? If he were a Hindu, why should he throw water towards the west instead of towards the rising sun? And who had taught him to do so? In reply, the Guru asked them why they threw water towards the east. To whom were they offering it, and who was to receive it? They replied that they were offering libations to the manes of their ancestors. It would satisfy them, and be a source of happiness to themselves.

The Guru then asked how far distant their ancestors were. A learned man among them replied that their ancestors were thousands of miles distant. The Guru, upon this, again began to throw palmfuls of water towards the west. They reminded him that he had not answered their questions, or vouchsafed any information regarding himself. He replied that, before he had set out from his home in the west, he had sown a field and left no one to irrigate it. He was therefore throwing water in its direction, that it might remain green and not dry up. His field was on a mound where rain-water would not

{p. 51}

rest, and he was obliged to have recourse to this form of irrigation. On hearing this, the spectators thought he was crazed, and told him he was sprinkling water in vain, for it would never reach his field. Where was his field and where was he, and how could the water ever reach it? 'Thou art a great fool, thy field shall never become green by what thou art doing.' The Guru replied, 'Ye have forgotten God. Without love and devotion your minds have gone astray. My field, which you say this water cannot reach, is near, but your ancestors are very far away, so how can the water ye offer them ever reach them or profit them? Ye call me a fool, but ye are greater fools yourselves.'

The Guru after a little time again broke silence, and said, 'The Hindus are going to hell. Death will seize and mercilessly punish them.' A Brahman replied, 'How can they who repeat God's name go to hell? Thou hast in the first place acted contrary to our custom, and now thou hast the audacity to tell us that we are going to hell.' The Guru replied, 'It is true that, if ye repeat the Name with love, ye shall not be damned. But when ye take rosaries in your hands, and sit down counting your beads, ye never think of God, but allow your minds to wander thinking of worldly objects. Your rosaries are therefore only for show, and your counting your beads is only hypocrisy. One of you is thinking of his trade with Multan, another of his trade with Kabul, another of his trade with Dihli, and the gain that shall in each case accrue.' The people, on hearing the Guru thus accurately divine their thoughts, began to think him a god, and prayed him to pardon them and grant them salvation by making them his disciples.

The Guru, requiring fire to cook his food, went into a Brahman's cooking-square for it. The Brahman charged him with having defiled his viands. The Guru replied that they had already

{p. 52}

been defiled. Upon this the following was composed:--

Evil mindedness is a low woman,[1] cruelty a butcher's wife, a slanderous heart a sweeper woman, wrath which ruineth the world a pariah woman.
What availeth thee to have drawn the lines of thy cooking place when these four are seated with thee?
Make truth, self-restraint, and good acts thy lines, and the utterance of the Name thine ablutions.
Nanak, in the next world be is best who walketh not in the way of sin.[2]

While at Hardwar the Brahmans pressed the Guru to return to his allegiance to the Hindu religion. They pointed out the spiritual advantages of sacrifices and burnt-offerings, and of the worship of cremation-grounds, gods, and goddesses. The Guru replied that the sacrifices and burnt-offerings of this age consisted in giving food to those who repeated God's name and practised humility. And where the Guru's hymns were read, there was scant worship of places of burial or cremation, or of gods, goddesses, and ignorant priests. As to the homage paid the latter, the Guru said that men were ruined thereby, as sweetmeats are spoiled by flies settling on them.

Guru Nanak and Mardana departed thence, and proceeded to Panipat, a place famous in Indian history as the scene of three great decisive battles. At that time a successor of Shaikh Sharaf[3] was the

[1. Dûmni, the wife of a Dûm.

2. Sri Râg ki Wâr.

3. Shaikh Sharaf, whose patronymic was Abû Ali Qalandar, received instruction at the age of forty years from Khwâja Qutub-ul-Din, who was also spiritual guide of Shaikh Farîd and of the Emperor Shams-ul-Din Altmish. Shaikh Sharaf says of himself, 'Learned men gave me a licence to teach and to pronounce judicial decisions, which offices I exercised for twenty years. Unexpectedly I received a call from God, and throwing all my learned books into the Jamna, I set out on travel. In Turkey I fell in with Shams-ul-din Tabrezi and Maulânâ Jalâl-ul-Dîn Rûmi, who presented me with a robe and turban and with many books, which in their presence I threw into the river. {footnote p. 53} Subsequently I came to Pânîpat and there lived as a recluse.' His tomb is there.]

{p. 53}

Muhammadan priest of the place. A disciple called Tatihari went to fetch a pot of water for his spiritual guide from the well near which the Guru and Mardana had sat down to rest. The Guru wore a Persian hat and a nondescript costume, which Tatihari took for that of a Persian darwesh. He addressed the Guru with the Muhammadan salutation, 'Salam Alaikum' (the peace of God be with you). Nanak replied, 'Salam Alekh' (salutation to the Invisible). Tatihari was astonished, and said that until then nobody had distorted his salutation. He went and told his religious superior, the Shaikh, that he had met a darwesh who had taken the liberty of punning on the Muhammadan salutation. The Shaikh at once resolved to go himself to see the man who had saluted the Invisible One, and inquire what he knew regarding Him.

The Shaikh, on arriving, asked the Guru what religious denomination his head-dress denoted, and why he did not shave his head in orthodox fashion. The Guru replied:--

When man hath shaved his mind he hath shaved his head;[1]
Without shaving his mind he findeth not the way.
Let him cut off his head and place it before his guru.
If he resign his own wisdom, he shall be saved by the wisdom of his guru.
To become the dust of the feet of all is to shave the head.
Such a hermit appreciateth the words of the guru;
That is the way in which the head is shaved, O brother.
Few are there who shave their heads according to the instruction of their guru.
Nanak having abandoned all pleasures, affections, and egotism,
Hath put on a hat of this fashion.[2]

[1. That is, has laid aside egotism.

2. This and the following hymns bearing on the jog philosophy express Guru Nânak's ideas on the subject. These hymns are not found in the Granth Sâhib.]

{p. 54}

The Shaikh then asked the Guru to what religious sect he belonged. The Guru replied --

Under the instructions of my Guru[1] I remain His disciple.
My stole and my hat consist in grasping the Word in my heart.
I have turned the flowing river into a streak of sand.[2]
I sit there at mine ease and am happy.[3]
I have dispelled joy and sorrow.
Having put on my stole I have killed all mine enemies;[4]
I have settled in the silent city and abide therein
There I learned how to wear this stole.
Having forsaken my family I live alone--
Nanak having put on this stole is happy.

The Shaikh next inquired to what sect the Guru's loin-cloth belonged. The Guru replied:--

By the word and instruction of the Guru my mind hath obtained peace;
I restrain my five senses and abide apart from the world
I close mine eyes and my mind bath ceased to wander.
I have locked up the ten gates[5] of my body,
And I sit in contemplation in its sixty-eight chambers.[6]
With this loin-cloth I shall neither grow old nor die.
Putting on a loin-cloth I dwell alone
And drink from the waterfall[7] of the brain.
I discard my low intelligence for the lofty wisdom of my Guru.
In this way Nanak weareth a loin-cloth.

[1. Nânak's Guru was God. See Sorath xi, Mahalla I, and Gur Dâs's Wâr, xiii, 25.

2. My brain is in a state of repose.

3. The wanderings of the mind hither and thither have ceased.

4. Dusht, literally, ill-wishers, then man's evil passions.

5. The apertures or openings of the body frequently mentioned in Oriental medical and theological sciences. Nine of them can be easily enumerated, the tenth is the brain.

6. In Jog philosophy the breath is supposed to wander in sixty-eight chambers of the body.

7. Jogis believe that nectar falls or trickles from the brain in a state of exaltation.]

{p. 55}

Then again the Shaikh desired to know what sect the Guru's slippers denoted. The Guru replied:--

By associating with those who go the right way I have obtained all knowledge.
I have reduced my mind to the caste of fire and wind;[1]
I abide in the manner of the earth or a tree;
I can endure the cutting and digging of my heart;[2]
I desire to be as a river or sandal
Which whether pleased or displeased conferreth advantage on all.
Having churned the churn[3] of this world I am exalted,
And having abandoned evil I appear before my God.
To those, who put on their slippers while meditating on Him,
O Nanak, mortal sin shall not attach.

Again the Shaikh said, 'Explain to me what a darwesh is.' The Guru, ordering Mardana to play the rebeck, composed the following hymn:--

He who while he liveth is dead, while be waketh is asleep,[4] who knowingly alloweth himself to be plundered,[5]
And who having abandoned everything meeteth his Creator, is a darwesh
Few servants of Thine, O God, are darweshes at heart,
Who feel not joy, sorrow, anger, wrath, pride, or avarice
Who look on gold as dross, and consider what is right to be lawful;
Who obey the summons of God and heed none other;
Who seated in a contemplative attitude in the firmament[6] play spontaneous music--
Saith Nanak, neither the Veds nor the Quran know the praises of such holy men.

[1. That is--I have no more caste than fire and wind.

2. Cutting, as applied to a tree, and digging to earth. That is--I can endure every form of torture.

3. Having extracted all pleasures from this world.

4. Who takes no heed of the world.

5. That is, who effaces himself.

6. That is, in the brain in a state of exaltation.]

{p. 56}

The Shaikh finally said, 'Well done! why make a further examination of him who beareth witness to God? Even to behold him is sufficient.' Then he shook hands with the Guru, kissed his feet and departed.

Guru Nanak journeyed on and arrived in Dihli. An elephant belonging to the reigning sovereign Ibrahim Lodi had just died; and the keepers, regretting the loss of the animal whose service had afforded them maintenance, were bewailing its death. The Guru inquired whose the elephant was. They replied in Oriental fashion, that it was the Emperor's, but that all things belonged to God. The Guru said. that the elephant was alive, and bade them go and rub its forehead with their hands, and say at the same time, 'Wah Guru'--hail to the Guru![1] It is said that the elephant stood up to the astonishment of all. The Emperor, having received information of the miracle, sent for the animal, mounted it, and went to the Guru, and asked if it was he who had restored it to life. The Guru replied, 'God is the only Destroyer and Re-animater. Prayers are for faqirs, and mercy for Him.' The monarch then asked, if the elephant were killed would the Guru again restore it. The Guru, not wishing to be treated as an itinerant showman, replied:--

It is He (pointing on high) who destroyeth and destroying re-animateth;
Nanak, there is none but the one God.

The animal then died, the inference of the chroniclers being that it died at the will of the Guru, as it had been previously called to life by him. The Emperor ordered him to again revivify it. The Guru replied, 'Hail to your Majesty! Iron when heated in the fire becometh red, and cannot be held for a moment in the hand. In the same way faqirs

[1. Wâhguru generally means God. We here merely give its apparent meaning.]

{p. 57}

become red in the heat of God's love, and cannot be constrained.' The Monarch, it is said, was pleased at this reply, and requested the Guru to accept a present from him. The Guru replied:--

Nanak is hungry for God, and careth for naught besides. I ask for God, I ask for nothing else.
The king returned to his palace, and the Guru continued his wanderings.

The Guru next proceeded to Bindraban, where he saw enacted the play called Krishanlila, in which the exploits of Krishan[1] are represented. Krishan appears making love to milkmaids, stealing their clothes while they were bathing, and killing his uncle Kans. The Guru expressed his dissatisfaction with the subject of the performance

The disciples play, the gurus dance,
Shake their feet, and roll their heads.
Dust flieth and falleth on their hair;
The audience seeing it laugh and go home.
For the sake of food the performers beat time,
And dash themselves on the ground.
The milkmaids sing, Krishans sing,
Sitas and royal Rams sing.
Fearless is the Formless One, whose name is true,
And whose creation is the whole world.
The worshippers on whom God bestoweth kindness worship Him;
Pleasant is the night for those who long for Him in their hearts.
By the Guru's instruction to his disciples this knowledge is obtained,

[1. Krishan son of Vasudev, by his wife Devaki, was born, according to Indian tradition, 3185 B.C. Cattle-grazing was the original calling of the family, and Krishan is celebrated for his adventures among the milkmaids of Mathura. In the Bhagavat Gîta, an episode of the Sanskrit epic Mahâbhârat, he declared himself to be God, the supreme Soul, the Creator of the world, and its Destroyer; and he has been accepted as such by Hindus, who deem him an incarnation of Vishnu.]

{p. 58}

That the Kind One saveth those on whom He looketh with favour.
Oil-presses, spinning-wheels, hand-mills, potters' wheels,
Plates,[1] whirlwinds, many and endless,
Tops, churning-staves, threshing-frames,
Birds tumble and take no breath.
Men put animals on stakes and swing them round.
O Nanak, the tumblers are innumerable and endless.
In the same way men bound in entanglements are swung round;
Every one danceth according to his own acts--
They who dance and laugh shall weep on their departure,
They cannot fly or obtain supernatural power.
Leaping and dancing are mental recreations,
Nanak, they who have the fear of God in their hearts have also love.[2]

Next: Life Of Guru Nanak: Chapter V