Ramaini 1

antar jyoti shabd ek nari, hari, brahma take tripurari;
te tiriye bhag linga ananta, teu na jane adiu au anta;
bakhari ek vidhate kinha, chowdahh thahar pat so linha;
hari har brahma mahanto nawu, tinh puni tin basawal gawu;
tinh puni rachal khand brahmanda,
chhow darshan chhanabe pakhanda;
pete kahu na ved padhaya, sunati karai turuk nahi aya;
nari mo chit garbh prasuti, swanga dhare bahutai kartuti;
tahiya ham tum ekai lohu, ekai pran biyapai mohu;
ekai jani jana sansara, kown gyan te bhayo ninara;
bhow balak bhagdware aya, bhag bhogi ke purush kahaya;
avigati ki gati kahu na jani, ek jibh kit kahown bakhani;
jo mukh hoi jibh das lakha, to koi ai mahanto bhakha;

Sakhi: kahahin kabir pukari ke, i leu vyowhar
ram nam jane bina, bhow budi muwa sansar

Meaning

In the beginning there was God. He was the Word and Light, and He was with the Creative Power. From that Creative Power Hari, Brahma and Shiva came. These three in turn produced countless creative organs of women and men (created women and men). None of them knew their beginning or end. Brahma created a house (universe) which was divided into fourteen parts. Names of Hari (Vishnu), Har (Shiva), Brahma are great. They again established three settlements or Lokas – Earth, heaven and Hell. They created many parts in the universe and later on their followers created six schools of philosophy and ninety-six hypocrisies (false religions). No Hu came out of the womb with knowledge of the Vedas, and no Muslim came out of the womb being circumcised. All people are born from the womb, and coming out from the womb of the mother, people accepted many pretended forms and actions. Then we and you are of the same blood, and the same breath sustains us. One mother (Maya – Creative Power) created the world. Then with what knowledge you became different from one another (i.e. Hus and Muslims). Being a baby, you came out through the mother’s genital organ, and being grown up you enjoyed the genital organ and was called a man. No one knows the state of the escribable God. With one tongue how can I explain it? If someone has one million tongues, then such a person can speak of the greatness of God.

Sakhi: Kabir says shouting that all the affairs in the world are not real. They are all illusory and perishable. Without knowing Ram Nam this world drowned and died.

Commentary

In this Ramaini Guru Kabir talks of the mythological concept of creation as prevalent in India. The three ‘gods’, Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva came from God and represent the functions of God as creator (Brahma), sustainer (Vishnu), and destroyer (Shiva). These are thought to be responsible for the universe with all beings in it. Brahma created this universe which he divided into fourteen parts–seven heavens and seven hells. The seven heavens are — 1. Bhur Lok, 2. Bhuvar Lok, 3. Svar Lok, 4. Tap Lok, 5. Jan Lok, 6. Mahar Lok, 7. Sat Lok. The seven hells are — 1. Atal, 2. Vital, 3. Sutal, 4. Rasatal, 5. Talatal, 6. Mahatal, and 7. Patal. The six schools of philosophy are: 1. Sankhya, 2. Yoga, 3. Nyaya, 4. Mimansa, 5. Vaisheshika, 6. Vedanta. The ninty-six hypocrisies are the ninety-six forms of religious sects and practices prevalent in India.

Because of the caste system in ia, it is held that one is born into a caste, no matter if he lives up to the prescribed rules or not. Guru Kabir pointed out the fallacy of that system by saying that no Brahmin was born with the knowledge of the Vedas (scriptures); that he was born as anyone else was, so how can he be said to be a Brahmin by birth. Similarly, Muslims circumcise the males, and Guru Kabir points out that Muslims are not born circumcised. Was God not able to make him be born circumcised if it were necessary? Elsewhere he points out that the Muslim women are not circumcised, so they must then remain Hus. Similarly, elsewhere he states that Brahmins wear the janeo (sacred thread), but their women do not, so they remain non-Brahmins.

The gist of this Ramaini is that all people are manifestations of God and are born in the same way, with the same organs and tissues, so with what k of intellect do people create all the differences and the divisions which lead to disharmony, intolerance, bigotry, and foolishness? All people are equal at birth, but as as they grow up they are taught, and quickly learn, to create differences in ideology, morals, value systems, class divisions, religious beliefs, etc. They adhere to these distinctions as if they were ordained by God Himself. These are all pretended forms since, basically, all people are equal and the same to God. So people continue to fool themselves and one another. All of these are the traps of Maya (illusion), and will prevent us from obtaining salvation. He tells us that God’s greatness is escribable. We should give up all the mythological and false teachings and practices which are prevalent in the world, and try to know God. Without the knowledge of God the whole world will drown in ignorance and not obtain the sought-after goal of Salvation.