Guru Granth Sahib against lust

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Defeating the Five Vices

It is every Sikh's duty to defeat the Five vices: Kam (Lust), Krodh (Rage), Lobh (Greed), Moh (Attachment) and Ahankar (Ego). The Guru Granth Sahib gives clear warning about these plunderers, thus:


Within this body dwell the five thieves:
sexual desire, anger, greed, emotional attachment and egotism.

They plunder the Nectar, but the self-willed manmukh does not realize it;...

sggs page 600


The Gurmukhs, (Guru oriented) people realise the existence of these five while the Manmukhs (own-mind centred) folks do not and are under the constant exploits of the five - their actions, thoughts and behaviour are totally governed by these negative emotions. They have not learnt to recognise the influence of these negative internal forces and are under their total control.

The Guru asks us all to watch over the traits of our minds and the influence of these five emotions and regulate our thoughts in a positive way. Sikhs are encouraged to 'tackle' these five vices with Naam Simran (prayer, meditation) and with positive virtues of Seva (selfless service), Sat (Truth), Santokh (Contentment), Daya (Compassion), Nimrata (Humility) and Pyare (Love), etc. A Sikh needs to constantly guard and to overcome these five internal evils; to always be vigilant and on guard to tackle the negative effects of these five thieves at all times! Gurbani offers clear guidance to the devotee and many warnings of how to be spiritually aware of the damage that these vices can cause. The Sikh needs to keep the mind engaged in positive work and under the influence of creative and useful forces.

A Sikh is encouraged to spend time in regularly reading and critical analyzation in order to better understand the meaning of Gurbani (hymns) found in the Guru Granth Sahib; also to keep company of the Sadh Sangat (like-minded Gurmukh- Guru oriented) folks who share similar positive goals in life. The daily recitation of hymns reminds and teaches him/her how to avoid the pitfalls of life in this world; to become a better person; to value life; to attain maximum benefit from their time on this planet; to improve ones spiritual understanding and to understand the message of God and to attain a higher consciousness.

The Shabads (Gurbani) below help explain the position the Gurus take on this issue:

1. Lays waste to the body

In the following Shabad, the Guru explains in very clear terms that lust and wrath will eat away the body away just as borax dissolves and eats away pure gold. So the pure God-given body will be wasted away if one allows the mind to be overcome by rage, anger or lust. One is given a very clear warning to guard oneself from these negative emotions.


ਕਾਮ੝ ਕ੝ਰੋਧ੝ ਕਾਇਆ ਕਉ ਗਾਲੈ ॥ ਜਿਉ ਕੰਚਨ ਸੋਹਾਗਾ ਢਾਲੈ ॥

Kĝm kroḝẖ kĝ­i­ĝ ka­o gĝlai. Ji­o kancẖan sohĝgĝ dẖĝlai.
Lust and wrath wastes the body away, as borax melts gold.

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2. Sexual promiscuity

a. Abandoning ones life partner
In the following Shabads, the Guru clarifies the need to restrain ones sexual relations to just ones partner and not to allow your thoughts to wonder outside the one and only sexual relationship that is allowed in Sikhism.
ਹਾਥ ਕਮੰਡਲ੝ ਕਾਪੜੀਆ ਮਨਿ ਤ੝ਰਿਸਨਾ ਉਪਜੀ ਭਾਰੀ ॥

Hĝth kamandal kĝpṛī­ĝ man ṯarisnĝ upjī bẖĝrī.
With bowl in hand, wearing his patched coat, great desires well up in his mind.

ਇਸਤ੝ਰੀ ਤਜਿ ਕਰਿ ਕਾਮਿ ਵਿਆਪਿਆ ਚਿਤ੝ ਲਾਇਆ ਪਰ ਨਾਰੀ ॥
Isṯarī ṯaj kar kĝm vi­ĝpi­ĝ cẖiṯ lĝ­i­ĝ par nĝrī.

Abandoning his own wife, he is engrossed in sexual desire; his thoughts are on the wives of others.
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b. Painful diseases
The Guru states that promiscuous behaviour will bring painful diseases to the person.


ਭੋਗੀ ਕਉ ਦ੝ਖ੝ ਰੋਗ ਵਿਆਪੈ ॥

Bẖogī ka­o ḝukẖ rog vi­ĝpai.

Painful diseases afflict those who are sexually promiscuous.
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3. Wounds of the soul

ਕਾਮ੝ ਕ੝ਰੋਧ੝ ਜੀਅ ਮਹਿ ਚੋਟ ॥ ਨਾਮ੝ ਵਿਸਾਰਿ ਚਲੇ ਮਨਿ ਖੋਟ ॥੨॥

Kĝm kroḝẖ jī­a meh cẖot. Nĝm visĝr cẖalė man kẖot.॥2॥
Sexual desire and anger are the wounds of the soul.
The evil-minded ones forget the Naam, and then depart. ॥2॥

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4. Lead to ruin

ਕਾਮਿ ਕ੝ਰੋਧਿ ਅਹੰਕਾਰਿ ਵਿਗੂਤੇ ॥ ਹਰਿ ਸਿਮਰਨ੝ ਕਰਿ ਹਰਿ ਜਨ ਛੂਟੇ ॥੧॥

Kĝm kroḝẖ ahaʼnkĝr vigūṯė. Har simran kar har jan cẖẖūtė. ॥1॥
Sexual desire, anger, and egotism lead to ruin.
Meditating on the Lord, the Lord's humble servants are redeemed. ॥1॥

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5. Suffer in pain

ਨਿਮਖ ਕਾਮ ਸ੝ਆਦ ਕਾਰਣਿ ਕੋਟਿ ਦਿਨਸ ਦ੝ਖ੝ ਪਾਵਹਿ ॥

Nimakẖ kĝm su­ĝḝ kĝraṇ kot ḝinas ḝukẖ pĝvahi.
For a moment of sexual pleasure, you shall suffer in pain for millions of days.

ਘਰੀ ਮ੝ਹਤ ਰੰਗ ਮਾਣਹਿ ਫਿਰਿ ਬਹ੝ਰਿ ਬਹ੝ਰਿ ਪਛ੝ਤਾਵਹਿ ॥੧॥
Gẖarī muhaṯ rang mĝṇeh fir bahur bahur pacẖẖuṯĝvahi. ॥1॥
For an instant, you may savor pleasure, but afterwards, you shall regret it, again and again. ॥1॥

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6. About Purity of Virginity

ਖਿੰਥਾ ਕਾਲ੝ ਕ੝ਆਰੀ ਕਾਇਆ ਜ੝ਗਤਿ ਡੰਡਾ ਪਰਤੀਤਿ ॥

खिंथा कालढ़ कढ़आरी काइआ जढ़गति डंडा परतीति ॥
khinthaa kaal ku-aaree kaa-i-aa jugat dandaa parteet.
Let the remembrance of death be the patched coat you wear, let the purity of virginity
be your way in the world, and let faith in the Lord be your walking stick.

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See also

External Links