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Some veechaars on vikaars

Posted by Mehtab Singh 
Some veechaars on vikaars
September 22, 2017 07:56AM
On Ang 1358 in Slok Seheskritee Pancham Pita Sri Guru Arjan Dev Jee gives us the structure of all these 5 vikaars that have tormented all of us from infinite lifetimes, including the present one. I feel there is a possible secret behind the order in which Guru Sahib mentions every single one of them. The very first one is moh (excessive emotional attachment), second comes kaam (lust/unfulfilled sexual desire), third is krodh (anger), fourth comes lobh (greed/avarice) and finally fifth is hankaar (ego/pride/arrogance).

In one of Gyani Maskeen jee's kathas, he says that in essence there are 3 vikaars, namely hankaar, kaam and lobh. The other 2, namely krodh and moh are dependant on hankaar. Anyone who goes against hankaar causes krodh, and anyone who feeds hankaar causes moh. Thus depending on how someone relates to our hankaar decides if we feel krodh or moh towards them.

Hankaar is indeed the hardest one to beat. So much so that Gurbani calls it ਪਾਪਾਤਮਾ, the very soul of sin! In fact, even after you've seemed to overpower the other 4, hankaar possibly gets even stronger once you start feeling "I have beaten them". Its this "I" that refuses to go, thanks to the persistent hankaar.

Regarding kaam and lobh, the other 2 chief vikaars, they are very similar except for the fact that their duration differs. Lobh is more of an "ongoing" and "continuous" thing. Someone who is greedy for money, property, or any other sort of material possessions will always be so. Actually, even after such a person has gathered enough, he/she won't stop. Rather, such folks tend to proceed to newer heights of greed/avarice. Gurbani says ਅਨਿਕ ਲਹਰੀ ਕਲੋਲਤੇ, implying that greed assaults us with one wave after another.

In another Shabad on Ang 403 Sri Guru Arjan Dev Jee says ਨਿਮਖ ਕਾਮ ਸੁਆਦ ਕਾਰਣਿ ਕੋਟਿ ਦਿਨਸ ਦੁਖੁ ਪਾਵਹਿ ॥ For a moment of sexual pleasure, you shall suffer in pain for millions of days.

There are 3 things to be remembered about kaam. Firstly, its much shorter in duration as compared to lobh. Gurbani calls it ਨਿਮਖ because the joy it provides is momentary. Not just unfulfilled sexual desires (lust), but possibly any momentary pleasure of any sense can be categorized as kaam. Watching TV/movies (momentary pleasure of eyes), listening to Kaljugi music or even nindya chugli (momentary pleasure of ears), enjoying all sorts of unhealthy delicacies or uttering nindya chugli (momentary pleasure of tongue), fornication (momentary pleasure of sex organs) etc. are common examples. Secondly, all of these are, as Gurbani says, a type of ਸੁਆਦ, i.e. taste/pleasure. Thirdly, all these pleasures are ਅਲਪ ਸੁਖ, meaning that they are very shallow in nature. A deeper delve might even convince us that any indulgence in any kind of momentary pleasure that satisfies any of our senses, especially in a way that drives our mind away from Guru Sahib, can be labelled as kaam.

We can summarize that all of these 5 are not just related to each other (in more ways than we can imagine), they can even be totally different in their approach. Their techniques are never the same when invading our consciousness. Just like when a gang of robbers targets a house for burglary, its mostly a single robber who enters first before making way for the rest of the gang to enter, these vikaars can work the same way. Its always one who hits first and other follow suit. There is a reason why Gurbani calls them demons and thieves!

May Guru Sahib bless us with awareness-filled mind and an alert consciousness where we remain watchful any time any one of these launches an offensive on us. May we be blessed with enough prem and bairag, plus a sense of ਪ੍ਰਭ ਨੇਰ ਹੂ ਤੇ ਨੇਰਿਆ (Vaheguru is nearest of the near) so we can steer clear of them.

Please forgive and correct me wherever I may be have been wrong in understanding and interpreting Sache Paatshaah's agaadh bodh Bani.

Mehtab Singh
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