Mantra for Virtue: Reflections on the 11th Pauri of Japji Sahib (Suniai Saraa)

Courtesy of On.My.BigfOot via Flickr – Creative Commons.

This post is provided courtesy of Spirit Voyage and was written by Dr. Ramdesh 

Yogi Bhajan once told a story about a King and a jeweler who sat down to haggle over some diamonds.  The jeweler pulled out a wide variety of diamonds…large and small, good and bad.  The King choose two diamonds, one large and one small.  He asked the jeweler the price.  To the King’s surprise, the smaller diamond was worth five times the larger diamond.  “What?!” exclaimed the King, “How can it be so?! That one’s so much bigger than the other!”  The jeweler humbly looked at him and replied, “It is not the size, your Majesty. It is the light.”

The same is true for all of us.  Our virtue is not in the external.  It doesn’t matter how much we earn, what our degrees are, how many friends we have.  It doesn’t matter if we are thin or fat.  The only virtue that matters for our own inner peace and happiness is our light.  Part of light’s virtue is that it shines out and uplifts others.  One candle in the darkness allows an entire roomful of people to read. One moon in a night sky lights up a whole world.

The 11th Pauri of Japji Sahib, according to Yogi Bhajan, can be recited 11 times as a mantra for virtue. It is not hard to see why, as the very first line, “Suniai saraa gunaa ke gaah” means that deep listening is like diving deep into an ocean of virtue.

Imagine yourself in front of a vast ocean.  The sun is shining so brightly that a thousand suns glitter back at you off the surface of the water.  The sand beneath your feet shines like diamonds.  The waves lap your feet.  As you listen to the sacred sound current, the current of the ocean pulls the sand from beneath your feet until you are knee deep in water.  But this water is Divine and soothes all the parts of you that life has ruffled.  You dive deep.  When you emerge you are glowing brightly and vibrating with the Naam or holy name.  As you go about your life, your vibration transmits some of the divine healing energy of this powerful ocean to all those around you.

Immerse yourself in the experience of suniai or deep listening.  Can you hear the sound of your own Light?

The Eleventh Pauri of Japji

Suniai saraa gunaa ke gaah.

Suniai sekh pir paatisaah.

Suniai andhe paavah raah.

Suniai haath hovai asgaah.

Naanak bhagtaa sadaa vigaas.

Suniai dukh paap kaa naas.

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