Shabd 32

hansā ho chit chetu sakerā, inhh parpanch kail bahuterā.
pākhand rūp rachiyo inha tirgun, tehi pākhand bhūlal sansārā.
ghar ke khasam badhik wai rājā, parjā kyādhown karai bichārā.
bhakti na jāne bhakt kahāwai, taji amrit vish kai lin sārā.
āge bade aisehi būde, tinahu na mānal kahā hamārā.
kahā hamārī gānthi dridh bāndhe, nisibāsar rahiyo hushiyārā.
ye kali guru bade parpanchī, dāri thagowri sab jag mārā.
ved-kiteb dou phand pasārā, tehi phande paru āp bichārā.
kahahin kabīr te hans na bisare, jehimā mile chhudāwanhārā.


You are a pure soul, therefore realize quickly that these (false gurus) have created many hypocrisies.  From the three gunas (qualities) they have created hypocrisies, and the whole world drowns in those them.  If the king who is master of the house becomes a butcher, then what can the other poor people do?Those who do not know devotion are called devotees. They give up the nectar and partake of the poison.In this way the leaders (false gurus) have drowned. They did not heed my warning.  Accept my advice and tie it in a strong knot. Remain alert day and night.In this Kaliyug (Iron Age) these gurus are quite hypocritical, and they have cheated the world.They have created a noose out of the Vedas and other scriptures, and they have themselves become trapped in it.  Kabir says that the soul will not be lost once it obtains a true guru as the liberator.


In this shabda Guru Kabir is giving a warning to all of us as pure souls, for the souls are innately pure, and they cannot be touched with any impurity. He then goes on to say that there are many false gurus who have created hypocrisies, and have fooled the innocent people of the world. This is common knowledge that many people held in high esteem as leaders of religions, are often betraying their followers. Although it appears that Guru Kabir is being very blunt in stating these hypocrisies, and criticizing these people, we must realize that he was a realized Satguru or Eternal Master, and he is speaking from that vantage point to instruct us to be aware of the false gurus.

Many people in the world innocently convey great honour to these false gurus saying that they are great. Many of these false gurus are quite conversant with the Vedas and scriptures, but have not lived and taught the essence of the true spiritual teachings. In fact, they have made a noose of these scriptures. They have not realized the fundamental truth of God as the ever present Master in the hearts of all beings. Many were still caught in the trap of passions and ego. How then can they be said to free others. They have themselves been caught in the noose that they created and, unfortunately, innocent people have become their victims. Guru Kabir is saying that the soul will be liberated from the bondage of passions and illusions of their material existence, if they obtain a true guru who is indeed a liberator.

In this shabda Guru Kabir is instructing us to be aware of false gurus by using our own innate ability to decide right from wrong, true from false etc. Unless we use our intellect properly, we will fall under the sway of false spiritual teachers.