Shabd 33

sunu hansā pyāre, sarwar taji kahān jāi.
jehi sarwar bich motiyā chugat hote, bahu vidhi keli karāi.
sūkhe tāl purain jal chhānde, kamal gaye kumhilāi.
kahahin kabīr jo abkī bichhure, bahuri milahu kab āi.

Meaning

O dear soul! Where will you go when you leave this lake (body)?In this lake you were plucking pearls of knowledge and, in many ways, you have enjoyed your life.When you depart from this lake it will dry up, and the lotus leaves and flowers will wither.Kabir says if you become separated from this lake now, when will you get this opportunity again?

Commentary

In this shabda Guru Kabir is comparing the body to a lake. Just as the lotus leaves and flowers are in the lake, just so the senses dwell in this body. The lotus represents the senses. While we have this body we are enjoying many things in life. We also enjoy pearls of wisdom if we care to take them. However, we often neglect to take these pearls of wisdom to our own detriment.

When old age creeps up, and the body dies, then along with it all the lotus leaves and flowers dry up. The senses, the mind and all pleasures vanish. If we did not obtain wisdom and liberation in this life, then Guru Kabir is asking when will we have such an opportunity again?

Life is a precious gift and it is meant for spiritual evolution. Our consciousness must evolve to such a state that we can obtain a realization of the divinity dwelling in all beings. We need to use this gift of life wisely, so that we may not squander it and become, figuratively, like a dry lake with dead lotus flowers.