Chandi

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ਆਦਿ ਅਪਾਰ ਅਲੇਖ ਅਨੰਤ ਅਕਾਲ ਅਭੇਖ ਅਲਖ ਅਨਾਸਾ ॥
Chandi in Gurmat Thought

Chandi is term of Brahmgyan, which is used as character of Gurmukh in Second Granth of Sikhs, Dasam granth. Chandi is one who fights with demons and finish their existence. Chandi is Will power(Icha Shakti)/Command of God. It is also called Gurmat, which fights with Manmatt. In Hindus and Anti Dasam People's dictionary Chandi is some diety having eight hands, who sits on lion and is a physical body. But in Gurmat it's not any physical body. There are many other names of Chandi like durga, durgshah, kali etc. In Chandi Charitar 1 of Charitropakhyan, Guru Gobind SIngh give many names to Command of god.

Chandi = Gurmat = Hukam = Icha Shakti = Vivek Budhi

Guru Gobind Singh wrote 4 Chandi Charitars in Dasam granth:

  1. Chandi Charitar Ukat(i) Bilas
  2. Chandi Charitar 2
  3. Chandi di Var
  4. Chandi Charitar (Charitropakhyan)

In whole four Charitars only Command Hukam, Icha Shakti of Lord is explained in details, how it fights with manmatt, in martial style. The person who is going to study these must know what ETYMOLOGY is else he will not able to interpret these easily.

Definition of Chandi

First Twelve Lines are about Definition of Word Chandi. After this basic explanation Author have explained the Character(Charitar) of Chandi:

Thou Who Ferries across people, Redeemer of Earth and Destroyer of Demons is Chandi.

-(Chandi Charitar Ukati Bilas, verse 9)

Chandi is Light(Joti) shining in the world, which is Blazing, cut Heads, and Shine intensely!

-(Chandi Charitar Ukati Bilas, verse 7)

Chandi is Arm which punishes and destroys Demon and art the Creator of the nine regions.3.

-(Chandi Charitar Ukati Bilas, verse 8)

Chandi means "the violent and impetuous one".[1] In Gurmat, Chandi is attributed to intuitive and discerning mind called Vivek Budhi[2] which fights with negativity.

In contrast, Sakar Hindus and the anti-Dasam Granth people[3] portray Chandi as a lady having physical appearance: a combination of Mahakali, Mahalakshmi and Maha Saraswati.

Attributes of Chandi

Guru Gobind Singh describe following eight attributes of Chandi in first stanza of his writing, Chandi Charitar:

ਆਦਿ ਅਪਾਰ ਅਲੇਖ ਅਨੰਤ ਅਕਾਲ ਅਭੇਖ ਅਲਖ ਅਨਾਸਾ ॥ (Chandi Charitar Ukati Bilas, Line 1, Guru Gobind Singh)

The description of eight attributes are here under:

  1. ਅਭੇਖ : Formless. It is neither a Human Body nor any visible form. As it is formless, Sikh Thought does not allow to worship Chandi in some physical form. It can't depict as Lady as depicted in Hinduism.
  2. ਅਨੰਤ : Endless. It means Chandi is deathless. It never dies
  3. ਆਦਿ : Primal. When God gives a command it's called his power and in other words it's Chandi. When that power acts through some living, it's also called Gurmat. Gurmat have beggining, Will power have beggining, but god have no beggining.
  4. ਅਪਾਰ : Infinite/Shoreless/Boundless/Unsurpassed. A Normal Mind could not think about intuitive and discerning mind i.e Gurmat. So it's Beyond our thinking. Even one could not think about Will of god.
  5. ਅਲੇਖ : Unaccountable. There is no account of Chandi = Will power of god. It gives birth too and it also destroys too. Gurmat also give birth to wisdom in person and kills his wrong intentions. Will power where made people their it is destroying people too.
  6. ਅਕਾਲ : Timeless. It means it becomes visible and then goes invisible. Like during times of Kabir Gurmat was visible as he defined much but after some time it was their but invisible form again Guru Nanak Sahib made it visible.
  7. ਅਲਖ : Unreachable. As it is formless, it's Incomprehensible, because it's behind our eyes. One need intuitive and discerning mind to understand it.
  8. ਅਨਾਸਾ : Immortal/Imperishable/Eternal. As it does not have any body it can't be destroyable.

Now it's clearly mentioned in first line of Chandi Charitar by Guru Gobind Singh, his own interpretations and defination of Chandi. How could we think it's osme physical form Diety.

Functions of Chandi

In Chandi Charitar Ukat(i) bilas where defination of Chandi is clear, there Guru Gobind Singh also explained what chandi do and how it flows in world. Chandi act's on living = Chetan.

ਜੋਤ ਜਗਮਗੈ ਜਗਤਿ ਮੈ ਚੰਡ ਚਮੁੰਡ ਪ੍ਰਚੰਡ ॥

It's Jyot Roop which is Present in all. Gurbani says ਤਿਸ ਦੈ ਚਾਨਣਿ ਸਭ ਮਹਿ ਚਾਨਣੁ ਹੋਇ ॥. With his Will power we get life, with Command = Chandi = Hukam we get life. but how this jyot active? ਗੁਰ ਸਾਖੀ ਜੋਤਿ ਪਰਗਟੁ ਹੋਇ ॥ (ਪੰਨਾ 13, ਸਤਰ 5, ਮਃ 1 ) by gurus teachings.

This Jyot is Chand = Powerful, Chamund = CHa + Mund = Which cuts Mund(Ego) and blazing.


ਭੁਜ ਦੰਡਨ ਦੰਡਨਿ ਅਸੁਰ ਮੰਡਨ ਭੁਇ ਨਵ ਖੰਡ ॥੩॥

ਭੁਜ : It's Arm of God. Through which Gurmat gyan is spread. Nanak was arm of god. ਦੰਡਨ : It punishes ਦੰਡਨਿ ਅਸੁਰ : It punishes all deamons. ਮੰਡਨ: it brings Deamons on way ਭੁਇ ਨਵ ਖੰਡ: It brings deamon on way present in all 9 relams.

Gurmat have same attributes, Gurmat works in will power of god. It fights with deamion 1) Mann 2) Other Chetal(Living), and bring them on way of god. The same ways Gurmat goes ਅਗਿਆਨੁ ਅੰਧੇਰਾ ਕਟਿਆ ਗੁਰ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਪ੍ਰਚੰਡੁ ਬਲਾਇਆ ॥ (ਪੰਨਾ 78, ਸਤਰ 11, ਮਃ 4)

Chandi Charitar

ਦੋਹਰਾ ॥ ਪ੍ਰਮੁਦ ਕਰਨ ਸਭ ਭੈ ਹਰਨ ਨਾਮ ਚੰਡਿਕਾ ਜਾਸ ॥

ਪ੍ਰਮੁਦ ਕਰਨ : Give Delights ਸਭ ਭੈ ਹਰਨ : Destroy all fears ਨਾਮ ਚੰਡਿਕਾ ਜਾਸ : who provides is known as chandika

Now Gurmat is one which makes person NIRBHAI which gives delight and gives Parmanand. So Concept of Chandi are explained well by Gurmukhs.


ਰਚੋ ਚਰਿਤ੍ਰ ਬਚਿਤ੍ਰ ਤੁਅ ਕਰੋ ਸਬੁਧਿ ਪ੍ਰਕਾਸ ॥੫॥

ਰਚੋ ਚਰਿਤ੍ਰ ਬਚਿਤ੍ਰ : Going to explain it's behavior, What it does when became visible in world. How it gives marvelous job with mind and soul. Which weapons it shots while fighting with heart and soutl of self and other.

ਤੁਅ ਕਰੋ ਸਬੁਧਿ ਪ੍ਰਕਾਸ : Guru Gobind Singh is seeking god's permission before writing his commands, what actually his Will power do and how it acts in world.

Eight Hands of Chandi

Polymelia is birth defect involving limbs, in which the affected individual has more than usual number of limbs but in realm of religion multiple organs have symbolic meanings like 10 Heads of Ravana symbolize his knowledge of 6 Shashtras and 4 vedas.

In Kirtan Sohila, Sahas Tav Nain hai toye ko, Sahas Moorat Nana Ek Tohey tells that he have thousands of eyes but he is not a physical body. Similarly, God is featured as Keshva (Long Hairs - The far sight), Chakardhar (The holder of Chakra), Maladhari etc which has symbolic meaning and qualities for formless entity. Similarly, Eight hands of Chandi and depicting it as a woman, Sitting on lion, is purely symbollic in nature.

  • Lion: Tatva Gyan. Also referred as Garuda in Guru Granth Sahib. Note: Garuda is treated as bird and Vishnudev sits on it but in Gurmat , Garuda is Tatva Gyan and Supreme Soul, also referred as Vishnu sits on it.
  • Female Body:Budhi. Chandi is also referred as Durgshah and Shiva which is masculine terms. Gurmat has concept of Mann, Chit and Budhi. Linguistically, Chitt and Mann are Masculine entities, Budhi is feminine entity. When a negative Budhi(Manmati) turned into Supreme Budhi(Gurmati) it is called Vivek Budhi. Chandi is qualitative aspect of Budhi which means burning fire. With Wisdom, In Gyan Khand, When wisdom turns the violent and impetuous one. It is called Chandi. Though, it is formless entity but its explanation is female oriented. In Guru Granth Sahib, the description is male oriented the reason Karta Purakh is used.
  • Eight Hands: Eight Sidhis: As Chandi have eight type of Siddhis, those are shown in her eight hands. Shank denotes Gurmat Nadi, Chakra Bakra Denotes Shabad coming from mouth, Ghanta denotes Gurmati Nadi, Gada Denotes Humility, Trishool denotes the wisdom of three worlds, Sword denotes Gyan Kharhag, Bow Arrow denotes bows of logics(again wisdom)

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