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Chapter 3: Solving the Riddle

The Lord is truth. Truth is His name.
His praises are sung in endless ways.
Even while praising they ask for more and more,
And the Lord keeps on giving.
Then what offering can we make to gain a glimpse of His court?
And what language shall we speak to endear us to Him?
Nanak says, Remember the true name and meditate on its glory in the ambrosial hour.
Through your actions you receive this body,
And by His grace the door to salvation opens.
Nanak says, Know then His truth, because He alone is everything.

He cannot be installed in any temple, nor fashioned by any skill.
The faultless one exists unto Himself.
Those who serve Him attain the glory.
Nanak says, Sing His praises, Lord of all attributes.
Sing and hear only of Him; engrave Him in your heart.
So banish sorrow and suffering, and make bliss your abode.
The guru’s word is the sound of sounds, and the Vedas too.

The Lord abides in his words.
The guru is Shiva, the destroyer; the guru is Vishnu, the sustainer;
The guru is Brahma, the creator; he is the trio of goddesses - Parvati, Laxmi and Saraswati.
However well I know Him, He cannot be described.
He cannot be expressed by words.
The guru is the secret that solves the riddle.
He is the benefactor of all. Let me never forget Him.

Sahib, the Lord, is the name given by Nanak to God. We can write about God in two ways. The way of the philosophers is to talk about God, but their words are dry and without love. Their words are intellectual and lack emotion completely.

The other is the way of the devotee. His words are juicy; he looks upon God not as a doctrine, but as a relationship. Unless there is a relationship the heart is not influenced. We can call God truth but what the word Lord conveys can never be conveyed by truth. How can we establish a relationship with truth? What would be the bridge that would connect truth to our heart?

The Lord is a loving relationship. The Lord immediately becomes the beloved and now we can be related; the way is open. The devotee longs for something that he can touch, something he can dance around, sing around. The devotee wants a place to lay his head. Lord is such a beautiful, lovable name. It means: the master, the owner. Thus the relationship can be of many kinds.

The Sufis look upon God as the beloved, so the seeker becomes a lover. The Hindus, the Jews and the Christians have spoken of God as the father, so the seeker becomes a child. Nanak saw God as the lord and master so the seeker becomes a servant.

It needs to be understood that for each relationship the path is different. With the beloved we stand as equals: neither is higher, nor lower. The relationship between a father and son is a relationship of circumstances: because we are born in a particular household, so the relationship. Since, given the opportunity we ourselves would like to be the master and make God the servant, the role of servant best serves to obliterate the ego. The ego does not disappear either in the father-son relationship or the lover-beloved relationship; it can only drop away in the master-servant relationship.

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