Sukhpran Kaur Khalsa from Vermont, USA shares her personal experience of Japji Sahib.
Reflecting on how Japji entered my life, initially I thought of those first sadhanas I attended at my first Kundalini Yoga training, where someone was leading reading Japji. I sat in the cool, dark room very early in the morning, with a red Nitnem, attempting to pronounce the words that seemed to be read at lightning speed. I am sure I got lost after a few lines! After reflecting on that sadhana experience, I realized that is not really how Japji entered my life. That may be how the technology of sadhana, trying to read the words from the Nitnem and being in sangat began, but perhaps Japji was a part of my life even before that. Perhaps Japji entered my life through the vibration of yogis and Sikhs that I had met before I even began practicing. Yet, maybe Japji was in my life even before that! Perhaps the actual reading of Japji just awakens in me what has already been in my life all along, an integral part of the soul. It is a kind of relief to reach that understanding. All that initial nervousness of reading, pronouncing correctly, sitting straight, staying awake, dissolve when I remember that reality- Japji is here, now, infinite- without me having to do anything. And, from that understanding, I am inspired to practice the technology of Japji.
The most beautiful description of Japji that I remember hearing is that Nanak was in a state of consciousness, that he wanted to be able to transfer to all beings. Through the ‘code’ of the language of Gurmukhi, he was able to transfer that consciousness. When we recite Japji, the sound vibration, and where the tongue hits meridians in the mouth, is that ‘code’ that initiates a shift in us and creates that consciousness of Nanak within us. I am in awe that we don’t so much have to hear stories of Nanak’s life to understand his teachings, but that he gifted us with a technology that actually transports us to the experience of his actual consciousness. That to me is Wow- Wahe Guru!
Another beautiful gift is that Yogi Bhajan shared with us the technology of reciting the various pauree’s of Japji 11 times a day to initiate certain effects. I do not feel that I noticed much effect when I first started reciting Japji, and various pauree’s. I feel my awareness of the effects has been progressive. The more I practiced Kundalini Yoga and reciting Japji, the more sensitive and clear I became as to the practical effects in my life. I don’t think I’ve missed a day of Japji since I first started practicing it! Some days when I can’t recite it, I play a recording. I also appreciate that when practicing reciting a pauree 11 times, the recitations can be split up throughout the day, and don’t need to be recited all at once.
One recent occasion that I recited a Japji pauree was for a lawsuit. I started reciting the 22nd pauree of Japji, which Yogi Bhajan described, “gives you strategy and brings victory in legal battles.” The lawsuit carried on for a couple of years, and I recited the 22nd pauree through that time, sometimes 11 times a day, sometimes more. When it came time to appear before the judge, the lawyers met with the judge first. I sat in my room and recited the pauree, and practiced Sat Nam Rasayan. I felt the strong presence of the Sikh gurus, and the most connected, stable space in my heart. I knew I was taken care of and that all would be well. After 5 minutes, my lawyer came into the room and simply shared that we would not be going to trial, that the other party had decided to agree to all of our terms.
With this technology, I did not have to fight, live in worry and fear through the years of the lawsuit. I could practice sitting with the knowledge that if I tap into the technology that I have learned, all will work out for the highest good. I am grateful to align with the qualities of Japji and the other technology in this tradition that continue to awaken me to these same qualities within myself so that I can then share them with others, with sangat. Connecting with others, with sangat, is key to my growth. Yes, we are poked, provoked, and confronted, but the most beautiful elevation is then possible. Reciting Japji together at the start of our morning sadhana brings us together, and keeps us together, with the consciousness of Nanak as our guide.
Sukhpran Kaur is a KRI Level 2 certified Kundalini Yoga and Meditation teacher, certified Sat Nam Rasayan healer and teacher, and staff member of the International Kundalini Yoga Teacher’s Association. Sukhpran shares her experience in healing classes, workshops and retreats that delve into the vast teachings of Kundalini Yoga and Meditation as taught by Yogi Bhajan, creating a safe, sensitive and intuitive space where each student can tap into subtle self awareness and expansion, health, happiness, peace and wholeness. sukhprankaur.com