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Sri Guru Har Rai Sahib Ji and the wounded snake

One day as Satguru Sri Guru Har Rai Sahib Ji Maharaj was hunting he saw a wounded snake crawling with difficulty. It was tortured by worms which it tried to shake off by wriggling and shaking its body. Guru Ji not only put the animal out of its pain, but granted it salvation. The author of the Suraj Parkash states that its spirit in the form of a bright light was seen to issue from its body and soar to the heaven.

The sikhs asked Guru Ji what the light was. Guru Ji replied, 'This serpent was in somewhat the same state as the python seen by my grandfather (Satguru Sri Guru Har Gobind Sahib Ji Maharaj) in Malwa. This serpent had been a pandit in a previous age, who used to falsely vaunt the power of the Veds. He asserted that he himself was Waheguru, but his conduct in no way justified such a boast. He used to also make injurious reflections on Guru Ji's hymns, saying, 'What is this hymn in this vulgar dialect?' He did not know that Satguru Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji Maharaj's compositions were superior to the Veds. The Pandit's soul passed into this serpent, and the worms have been causing him to suffer for the deceit he practised on men and women. There were however some good acts to his credit from previous births and on this account he has met Guru Nanak Dev Jis followers and obtained salvation. As Satguru Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji Maharaj has said:

'By association with the saints man has no travail;
There is no necessity to toil in their company;
On beholding and meeting them man becomes happy.

Carefully remember that however much you read Vedantic literature, it will be a source of misery unless you love Waheguru. Satguru Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji Maharaj has also said:

'Though one be very beautiful, of high birth, clever, a divine in words and wealthy;
Yet shall he be deemed as dead, O Nanak, if he has no love for God

Where ever you are O my beloved Sikhs, believe in the words of Satguru Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji Maharaj, worship Waheguru and boast not of your Vedantism. He who possessing no divine knowledge calls himself Guru shall have no happiness but on the contrary terrible suffering. The disciples of a false Guru shall lose their human birth in this world. A guru who possesses no holiness shall with his disciples endure terrible suffering.

O my beloved Sikhs, Where ever you are, listen to me, never consume any portion of offerings. They will not assist you in distress, but on the contrary, lead you into the power of Death, whose punishment shall wring from you loud lamentations. Perform honest labour, serve the saints and I shall everywhere be your succourer. As Satguru Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji Maharaj has said:

'They who eat the fruit of their labour and bestow something,
O Nanak, recognise the right way'

A deficiency in your weights or want of equality in your scales must be avoided. Ever abide firm in your faith.'

The Sikhs then asked Guru Ji to give them further instruction in Sikhi. He replied, 'You must read the Granth Sahib, and not worship any inanimate object. When a Sikh dies sacred food should be prepared and distributed after reading the Sohila Sahib. There should be no mourning, but hymns of the Gurus should be sung, and the Granth Sahib should be intoned. No Gods or Goddesses should be deemed succourers of man. Reliance must be placed on the Immortal God alone.'