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The Guru's lesson in abundance

A New Age concept, which explains the urge to live in prosperity, without letting go of the aspirations to meet God!

india Updated: Feb 21, 2004 17:28 IST

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From the Sikh Scriptures comes a well-known story of how Guru Gobind Singh gave a lesson to the world to change their beliefs and show them that Spirituality and Wealth could co-exist peacefully with each other.

This is a New Age concept, which would help us understand the world's urge to live in a state of prosperity, without letting go of their Higher aspirations to meet God!

Those were the times when a Spiritual man was supposed to live like a fakir, with the barest minimum of possessions, and away from all worldly businesses.

A wealthy trader, Bishambar Das, a pious man who was a devotee of Guru Gobind Singh, had a son called Har Gopal. Seeing his son move away from the pious life, he asked him to go to the Guru and seek his blessings, so that he would not stray from the path of righteousness, as he was prone to do.

With doubts and misgivings, Har Gopal set off to meet the Guru. When he reached the Guru's Darbar at Anandpur, he found the grandeur with which the Guru lived to be that of a worldly man. To top it all, the Guru had a massive army and even fought battles! He was very disappointed, as he thought that his father had been misled into believing that the Guru was a Godly man.
However, when in a cynical mood he went to the congregation to listen to the Kirtan and prayers, he found himself strangely moved, and filled with the love vibration that the Guru imparted to all who came to him in love.

On the eve of his departure he decided to give the Guru the gift that he had brought for him, a costly pair of gold bracelets. He found the Guru sitting on the banks of the river, and when he made his offering, the Guru admired them and started playing around with them, tossing them around. As he did so, one of them fell into the river.

Har Gopal, sad at this loss, jumped into the flowing river to find the bracelet. However, his efforts were in vain. When he surfaced he asked the Guru to show him the exact spot where the bracelet fell, so that he could dive down and retrieve it. The Guru smilingly threw the other bracelet also into the river to mark the spot.

Har Gopal felt ashamed, when realization dawned on him that the Guru was not enamoured with costly gifts. What he had attached so much importance and value to had really no meaning for this Saint.

He felt humbled, and understood that the Guru was not enriched by these things, as he had no attachments to worldly goods. When he was returning, Guru Gobind Singh made him accept a return gift of a steel bangle, known as a Kada.

To be continued...

First Published: Feb 21, 2004 17:01 IST