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Meanwhile the Guru made a journey to the south of India. He wore wooden sandals, took a stick in his hand, twisted a rope round his head as a turban, and on his forehead put a patch and a streak. On that occasion he was accompanied by Saido and Gheho of the Jat tribe. He proceeded to the Dravidian country now named Madras.

His companions, seeing his morning ablutions, thought that he worshipped the river god, Khwaja Khizir,[1] and derived his power from him. They

[1. Le mot de Khedher, signifiant en Arabe verd et verdoyant, on {footnote p. 148} pretend que ce nom fut donné à ce prophète à cause qu'il jouit d'une vie florissante et immortelle depuis qu'il eut bû de l'eau de la Fontaine. Plusieurs le confondent avec le prophète Élie, que nous disons faire sa demeure dans le Paradis terrestre et jouir de l'immortalité. Parce que l'arbre de vie étoit dans ce Paradis, et qu'il y avoit aussi une Fontaine, les Musalmans donnent à cette Fontaine le nom de Fontaine de Vie, et croyent que c'est de la boisson de son eau, aussi bien que du fruit de l'arbre de vie, qu'Élie entretient son immortalité. (D'Herbelot.)]

{p. 148}

determined to worship the same god, and advance themselves if possible to a higher spiritual eminence than the Guru had attained. While travelling one night for the purpose of their worship they met a man carrying a fish in his hand. After mutual interrogations he said that he was the river god taking an offering to the Guru, and that it was from the Guru he had obtained his power, and not the Guru from him. He added: 'I am water, he is air, a superior element; I am often contained in him.' Saido and Gheho then went and prostrated them selves before the Guru. He asked them why they had come to him at that hour. They used formerly only to come after sunrise. They then confessed to him the whole story of their attempted worship of Khwaja Khizir, and begged his forgiveness. The Guru composed the following on that occasion:--

He who batheth in the immortal water of divine knowledge taketh with him the sixty-eight places of pilgrimage.
The Guru's instruction is jewels and gems; by serving him his disciples find them.
There is no place of pilgrimage equal to the Guru
The tank of consolation is contained in that Guru.
The Guru is a river whence pure water is ever obtained,
and by which the filth of evil inclinations is washed away.
He who findeth the True Guru hath obtained perfect
bathing, which maketh him a god out of a beast or a ghost.
He who is imbued with the true Name obtaineth it; that Guru is called sandal.
Fix thine attention on His feet by whose odour vegetables
are perfumed.

{p. 149}

Through the Guru man obtaineth real life, and through the Guru man departeth to God's home.
Nanak, through the Guru man is absorbed in the True One; through the Guru man obtaineth the special dignity of deliverance.[1]

On the same occasion the Guru composed the following:--

They who forget the Name go astray in worldly love and superstition;
They let go the stem and cling to the branches; what shall they obtain? Ashes.
How can man be saved without the Name? If any one know, let him tell it.
If man be holy he shall be saved; the perverse shall lose their honour.
Perfect is the wisdom of those who serve the one God.
Servants of God, take shelter in Him who was in the beginning, in every age, and who is the Bright One.
My Lord is one; there is none other, my brethren.
By the favour of the True One happiness is obtained.
Without the Guru no one hath obtained God, however much the matter be debated.
He Himself showeth the way and fixeth true devotion in the heart.
Even though thou advise the perverse man, he will still go to the wilderness;
But without God's name he shall not be saved; he shall die and go to hell.
He who repeateth not God's name shall wander in birth and death.
God's worth cannot be known without serving the true Guru.
Whatever service God causeth men to do, that will be done.
It is God Himself who acteth; whom besides shall I mention? God beholdeth His own greatness.
He whom God inspireth serveth the Guru.

[1. Prabhâti.]

{p. 150}

Nanak, they who give their lives shall be saved, and shall obtain honour in God's court.[1]

The Guru arrived at a Saravagi or Jain temple, which was much frequented. Narbhi, the Jain priest, went with his disciple to visit him. The Jains attach an exaggerated value to life in every form. The Jain priest heard that the Guru had not the same tender scruples on the subject, and began to catechize him. 'Eatest thou old or new corn? (that is, dost thou eat corn with worms in it or not?) 'Drinkest thou cold water; shakest thou the trees of the forest to eat their fruit? Who is thy guru, and what power hath he to pardon thee since thou violatest all rules and destroyest life?' The Guru in reply uttered the following pauri:--

When the True Guru is merciful, faith is perfected.
When the True Guru is merciful, man shall never grieve.
When the True Guru is merciful, man shall know no sorrow.
When the True Guru is merciful, man shall enjoy divine pleasure.
When the True Guru is merciful, what fear hath man of Death?
When the True Guru is merciful he ever bestoweth happiness.
When the True Guru is merciful, man obtaineth the nine treasures.[2]
When the Guru is merciful, man is absorbed in the True One.[3]

After this the Guru launched out into a satire on the Jains:--

They have their hair plucked out, they drink dirty water, they beg and eat others' leavings;

[1. Âsa Ashtapadi.

2. Nau nidhi. This expression is used in the sacred writings of the Sikhs to denote unlimited wealth and prosperity. In the sacred books of the Hindus the expression has a more definite numerical signification.

3. Mâjh ki Wâr.]

{p. 151}

They spread out their ordure, they inhale its smell, they are shy to look at water;
They have their heads plucked like sheep; the pluckers' hands are smeared with ashes--
They spoil the occupations of their parents; their families weep and wail for them.
They give not their deceased relations lamps or perform their last rites, or place anywhere barley rolls and leaves for them.[1]
The sixty-eight places of pilgrimage grant them no access; the Brahmans will not eat their food.
They are ever filthy day and night; they have no sacrificial marks on their foreheads.
They ever sit close as if they were at a wake, and they enter no assembly.
They hold cups in their hands; they have brooms[2] by their sides; they walk in single file.
They are not Jogis, or Jangams, or Qazis, or Mullas.
God hath ruined them; they go about despised; their words are like curses.
God killeth and restoreth animals to life; none else may preserve them.
The Jains make not gifts or perform ablutions; dust lighteth on their plucked heads.
From water gems arose when Meru was made the churning staff.[3]
The gods appointed the sixty-eight places of pilgrimages, and holy days were fixed accordingly by their orders.

[1. The Jains conform in many ways to Hindu customs. The Guru here censures them for not being altogether consistent.

2. To brush away insects and thus avoid treading on them.

3. According to the Hindus, Vishnu in his Kurmavâtar assumed the shape of a tortoise which supported the mountain Mandara--in the Sikh writings called Meru--the Olympus of the Hindus, with which the gods churned the ocean. From the ocean were produced the fourteen gems or jewels here referred to. They are Lakhsmi, wife of Vishnu, the moon, a white horse with seven heads, a holy physician, a prodigious elephant, the tree of plenty, the all-yielding cow, &c.]

{p. 152}

After ablution the Muhammadans pray; after ablution the Hindus worship; the wise ever bathe.
The dead and the living are purified when water is poured on their heads.
Nanak, they who pluck their heads are devils: these things[1] please them not.
When it raineth there is happiness; animals then perform their functions.
When it raineth, there is corn, sugar-cane, and cotton, the clothing of all.
When it raineth, kine ever graze, and women churn their milk.
By the use of the clarified butter thus obtained burnt offerings and sacred feasts are celebrated, and worship is ever adorned.
All the Sikhs are rivers; the Guru is the ocean, by bathing
in which greatness is obtained.
If the Pluckedheads bathe not, then a hundred handfuls
of dust be on their skulls.[2]

The Jain priest asked the Guru why he travelled in the rainy season, when insects are abroad and there is danger of killing them under foot. The Guru replied as follows:--

Nanak, if it rain in Sawan, four species of animals have pleasure-
Serpents, deer, fish, and sensualists who have women in their homes.
Nanak, if it rain in Sawan, there are four species of animals which feel discomfort--
Cows' calves, the poor, travellers, and servants.

The Jain priest went and fell at his feet and be came a convert to his faith. On that occasion the Guru completed his hymns in the Majh ki War, and Saido and Gheho wrote them down from his dictation. It is said that the Guru then went to an island in the ocean, governed by an inhuman tyrant. The name of the island has not been preserved. Besides

[1. That is, water and bathing.

2. Mâjh ki Wâr.]

{p. 153}

Saido and Gheho a third Jat called Siho accompanied him thither. On seeing them the tyrant resolved to put them to death for trespassing on his domain. He seized the Guru as the first victim of his rage. The Guru fell into a trance and sang the following:--

He to whom the Lord is compassionate and merciful, will do the Master's work.
That worshipper whom God causeth to abide by His order, will worship Him.
By obeying His order man is acceptable, and shall then reach his Master's court.
He shall act as pleaseth his Master, and obtain the fruit his heart desireth;
And he shall be clothed with a robe of honour in God's court.[1]

It is said that on hearing this hymn the tyrant desisted from his intention, and prostrated him self before the Guru. Saido gave him water to drink in which the Guru had washed his feet, and thus made him a Sikh, and ensured him deliverance.

The Guru on that occasion met a successor of Pir Makhdum Baha-ul-Din Qureshi, who had an extravagant idea of his own spiritual and temporal importance. On being assured of the man's hypocrisy, the Guru uttered the following:--

The heart which relinquisheth God's praises and magnification and attacheth itself to a skeleton,[2]
Receiveth a hundred reproaches by day and a thousand by night.[3]

The Pir then fell at his feet, invited the Guru to abide with him and desist from his wanderings, upon which the Guru uttered the following reflection and instruction:--

[1. Âsa ki Wâr.

2. That is, to the filth of the world.

3. Sûhi ki Wâr.]

{p. 154}

Rest, sit at home, there is trouble in ever travelling.
A place of rest is recognized when men dwell there permanently.
What manner of resting-place is the world?
Tie up the practice of sincerity as thy travelling expenses, and remain attached to the Name.
Jogis sit in devotional postures, mullas dwell at places of rest;
Pandits read books; sidhs sit in the palaces of the gods;
Demigods, sidhs, heavenly musicians, munis, saints, shaikhs, pirs, and commanders
Have gone, stage by stage, and others too are departing.
Emperors, kings, princes, nobles have marched away.
Man must depart in a ghari or two; O my heart, understand that thou too must go.
This is told in hymns, yet few are they who understand it.
Nanak humbly asserteth, God is contained in sea and land, in the upper and lower regions;
He is unseen, inscrutable, omnipotent, the kind Creator.
The Merciful alone is permanent; the whole world beside is transitory.
Call Him permanent on whose head no destiny is recorded.
The heavens and the earth shall pass away; He the one God alone is permanent.
By day the sun travelleth, by night the moon; hundreds of thousands of stars pass away.
The one God alone is our resting-place, Nanak saith verily.[1]

Upon this the Pir was convinced that the Guru was an exalted spiritual leader.

Next: Life Of Guru Nanak: Chapter XIII