Ramaini 30

ow bhule khat darshan bhai, pakhand bhesh raha laptai;
jiw siw ka ahi nasowna, chariu ved chatur gun mowna;
jaini dharam ka maram na jana, pati tori deva ghar ana;
dawna marua champa ka phula, manhu jiw koti sam tula;
ow prithivi ke rom uchare, dekhat janam apano hare;
manmath bindu karai asrara, kalpai bindu khasai nahin dwara;
takar hal hoi adbuda, chhow darshan men jaini bigurcha.

Sakhi: gyan amar pad bahire, niyare te hai duri;
jo janai take nikat hai, raha sakal ghat puri.

Meaning

O brother! you follow the six philosophies and are lost, and are entangled in their hypocrisies; These hypocrisies destroy life’s welfare, and the four Vedas and their four categories of instructions are silent about them; The Jains do not know the secret of dharma; they bring plucked leaves to the temple; They pluck the flowers of dawna, marua and champa which is like killing ten million lives; They pluck the hairs from their bodies and they knowingly lose their life (by not knowing God); They speak against losing a drop of semen, and so practice cruelty to it by withholding it while enjoying sex; Because of these practices the Jains face a terrible fate. In the six philosophies the Jains are criticized.

Sakhi: The Immortal state is above worldly knowledge. It is near yet people think it is far. But for him who understands that state, it is very near because it is pervading in all beings.

Commentary

Guru Kabir taught a rational and logical path to God realization and liberation. He did not adhere to the teachings contained in the various scriptures and philosophies which abounded around him. He stated in many places that they cannot give one the knowledge of the soul and of God, for they are mere words. One has to develop an inner realization of what he taught in order to obtain liberation. He also thus criticized all followers of religion who veered to extremes and away from a rational and a logical path. It is in this vein that he speaks of the Jains who are supposed to be very non-violent. Although the strict adherents (mainly monks) will cover their faces with veils to avoid inhaling insects and would carry a broom to sweep the path so as not to tread on insects, they nevertheless pluck the hairs from their bodies which in itself is painful, cruel and unnatural. They belief in self-mortification which again is unnatural and not conducive to God realization. Although they are non-violent, some still pluck the leaves and flowers, which also contain life, and take them to the temple to offer as worship. Similarly, they enjoy sex but practice withholding the semen (a practice called amrowli which should naturally be ejaculated. The Jain monks believe that one has to practice nudity (to show total non-attachment) in order to attain liberation. Since women cannot practice nudity in this group, they are not likely to obtain liberation until they are reborn as a monk. All people who stray from a logical and rational spiritual path face the same fate i.e. of deludedly thinking that they are saved, or will attain liberation, whereas in fact, they waste their lives by following various hypocrisies. Guru Kabir points out that a spiritual path must be natural, moderate, logical and rational in its approach to God realization. He teaches against going off on tangents with scraps of truth as many religious people do. He teaches us to realize the presence of God within. Thus, in the sakhi he states that he who understands, realizes that God pervades all beings, but he who does not understand, God, though near, is very far from him. Do not get hung up on religious books and philosophies. Instead, develop the means of awareness of God dwelling within.