Guru Granth Sahib on Drugs

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This article is based entirely on the views expressed by the Sikh Gurus in Gurbani – and does not rely on any outside views. Guru's message is clear and unambiguous and anyone who understands Gurmukhi will be able to come to their own conclusion. Various sects have expressed their own "Rehat Maryadas" on this subject. However, for a true Sikh that guidance provided by Gurbani takes precedence over views expressed by others.

Gurbani i.e. writings within Sri Guru Granth Sahib (or SGGS) are the most important spiritual guidance for a Sikh as Bani is regarded as the Guru or "Spiritual teacher" for the Sikh. ("Bani guru, guru hai bani vich bani amrit saaray."… "Bani is Guru, and Guru is the Bani. Within Bani, all Ambrosial Nectars are found." sggs p982)


To be a Sikh is to regard the Guru Granth Sahib as ones true spiritual guide. The message within the Guru Granth Sahib is the universal and moral guide for all of humanity and in particular for all Sikhs. No Hukamnama (order, directive or decree) or Rehatnama by anyone other than the Sikh Guru can move the Sikh away from this stand ("Hukam rajaa-ee chalnaa naanak likhi-aa naal.." …. " O Nanak, it is written that you shall obey the Hukam of His Command, and walk in the Way of His Will". sggs p1).

Type of Drugs

There is a variety of drugs in the world which have a negative impact on health and the general well being of the person; these are not prescribed but recreational drugs. Many countries ban the use of the serious ones in this category. Of course, there are also prescribed drugs that are beneficial to our health and is used solely to help our health problems. Nevertheless, these prescribed or even on the shelf drugs can be abused and be dangerous to our health.

The main recreational drugs can be classified into several distinct groups:

  • a. Alcohol includes beer, wine, gin, brandy, whisky, etc
  • b. Marijuana including Hash, ganja, hashish, etc
  • c. Cocaine including Crack Cocaine, paco,
  • d. Opioids including Heroin, opium poppy, morphine, codeine, etc

All these are criticised in the Guru Granth Sahib and a Sikh is prohibited form using any of these, unless they are prescribed by a medical doctors for medical treatment.

Message of Gurbani

Main article: Gurmat view on intoxicants

The use of wine, alcohol and recreational drugs (such as tobacco, marijuana, heroin, cocaine, ecstasy, LSD, PCP and other intoxicants, including such things as inhalants, gases, aerosols, shoe glue, solvents or the like) used with the intention of creating or enhancing recreational or religious experience are condemned by the Sikh Gurus.

People who use such things are wasting what little time they have in this life, by living in an illusionary state. The Guru supports those who stay alert and aware, keeping themselves away from all types of intoxicants; Gurbani states in the Guru Granth Sahib that "Those who do not use intoxicants are true; they dwell in the Court of the Lord.(1)" (SGGS p 15)

While Gurbani refers to intoxicants in a wider sense, it points out the falsehood of Maya which Gurbani considers an even greater intoxicant than those above. Further, intoxicants are grouped with four human traits which are responsible for deceiving the mortals of this world; the Guru says: "Sexual desire, anger, Maya, intoxication and jealousy - these five have combined to plunder the world.(1)(Pause)" (SGGS p 974)

The Guru says, in no uncertain terms, that the Gurmukh (Guru-oriented person) should not drink wine even if it is made from the water of the River Ganges, which is considered by Hindus and many others in India as the holiest river in the world. The Guru expresses this very clearly in the following tuk (line) from the holy Granth, "Even if wine is made from the water of the Ganges, O Saints, do not drink it" (SGGS p 1293). So even if the wine or other alcoholic drink be it whisky or beer or rum or gin or brandy or martini or vodka or champagne is made from the most clear spring water obtained from the most natural, highest and pristine mountains of mother Earth, DO NOT DRINK it!

Shabad connected with marijuana

SGGS Page 1377 Full Shabad

ਕਬੀਰ ਭਾਂਗ ਮਾਛ੝ਲੀ ਸ੝ਰਾ ਪਾਨਿ ਜੋ ਜੋ ਪ੝ਰਾਨੀ ਖਾਂਹਿ ॥
kabeer bhaaNg maachhulee suraa paan jo jo paraanee khaaNhi.
Kabeer, those mortals who consume marijuana, fish and wine

ਤੀਰਥ ਬਰਤ ਨੇਮ ਕੀਝ ਤੇ ਸਭੈ ਰਸਾਤਲਿ ਜਾਂਹਿ ॥੨੩੩॥
tirath barat naym kee-ay tay sabhai rasaatal jaaNhi. ॥233॥
- no matter what pilgrimages, fasts and rituals they follow, they will all go to hell. ॥233॥


Shabad connected with intoxicants

SGGS Page 15 Full Shabad

ਅਮਲ੝ ਗਲੋਲਾ ਕੂੜ ਕਾ ਦਿਤਾ ਦੇਵਣਹਾਰਿ ॥
Amal galolĝ kūṛ kĝ ḝiṯĝ ḝėvaṇhĝr.
The Great Giver has given the intoxicating drug of falsehood.

ਮਤੀ ਮਰਣ੝ ਵਿਸਾਰਿਆ ਖ੝ਸੀ ਕੀਤੀ ਦਿਨ ਚਾਰਿ ॥
Maṯī maraṇ visĝri­ĝ kẖusī kīṯī ḝin cẖĝr.
The people are intoxicated; they have forgotten death, and they have fun for a few days.

ਸਚ੝ ਮਿਲਿਆ ਤਿਨ ਸੋਫੀਆ ਰਾਖਣ ਕਉ ਦਰਵਾਰ੝ ॥੧॥
Sacẖ mili­ĝ ṯin sofī­ĝ rĝkẖaṇ ka­o ḝarvĝr. ॥1॥
Those who do not use intoxicants are true; they dwell in the Court of the Lord. ॥1॥


See also

External links