WHO GOES TO HEAVEN?
There are many different religions in the world, some new and others very old. There are different religious Camps. Some of these camps believe in quantity. They are always in pursuit of increasing their memberships. In order to lure others to their creed, they give some guarantee for entry in the Heaven. Some of them not only offer the guaranteed entry in the Heaven but emphasize in such a way as if they are carrying the Keys to Heaven in their pockets. If one asks them, “What was happening to the world when your camp did not even come into existence? Was the whole world going to hell then? Or was there no world before that?” First came the Satyug (the Golden Age) the age of Truth. It had all the Four Feet1 of Truth and the truth prevailed all around in this world. Then came Treta (the Silver Age) when one foot of Truth had gone. After that came Duaper (the Brass Age) which had only Two feet of Truth. Then arrived the Present Kalyug (the Dark Age). The Kalyug has only one foot of Truth to stand on. Falsehood , treachery and arrogance are the trade mark of Kalyug. If for a moment we accept their exclusive right of entry to heaven, where were the people going during these long ages? The claimants’ camps came into existence only in the Dark Age which it is generally believed to have begun about five thousand years ago.
Who Goes to Heaven?
The followers of such camps are having the assurance of guaranteed entry into
Heaven. National survey indicates that there is staggering percentage of persons
who commit adultery, both men and women cheating their spouses. People slander others
and lie most of the time. Will Heaven accept adulterers, slanderers, liars or robbers also? If the answer is not in affirmative then who will go there? What would happen to their claim of guaranteed entry to heaven? If heaven can accept backbiters, adulterers, slanderers, cheaters or liars, who would go to hell then? If you ask anyone about going to heaven, one would be surprised to hear that majority are sure to reach heaven. Their answer would
be, "My Lord will take me to heaven." Sure, your Lord can take you there but you
will have to follow the instructions of your Lord first when he says, "Do not commit
adultery, do not steel, robe or lie. Earn your livelihood by honest means and
do praise and prayer of the Almighty regularly." The Divine Word says,
"By obeying His Order, one is acceptable
And shall then reach his Master's court."
(Asa di Var pauri (15) p-471, Guru Granth Sahib)
No Lord will stand by us if we remain indulged in these worldly vices.
Three Modes of Human Mind:
There are three modes or temperaments under which our minds remain
occupied all the time.
I. Tamas or Tamo (Egotism): There are Five famous vices - Lust, Anger (wrath),
Greed (avarice), Worldly Attachment and Ego. The whole world lives under their
influence. When a person is fully occupied with these vices, he has a state of mind
called Tamo (Tamas - Egotism).
II. Rajo (Rajas - Optimism): When a person has a zeal to move forward in life
and has an act of progressive vision, he enters into Rajo mode. He still remains under the influence of these vices.
III. Sato (Satik - Pessimism): When a person goes towards spirituality, he enters
into Sato mode. By meeting the society of the Holy, he has a desire to meet his
Lord. He then tries to control the influence of the five vices and moves in the
direction of saintlihood.
The whole world remains in the cycle of these three modes of the mind.
As one sleeps and passes the night in dreams, the whole world passes its Night
of Life in slumber full of delusions. But only those who take refuge in the teachings
of their Guru (Lord), will remain awake during their Night of Life and would gain
a fruitful end. The Divine Word says:
"The Simirtis and Shastras2 discriminate between 'good' and 'evil',
but know not the essence of the Real Thing.
Without the Guru, no one knows the Quintessence,
know not the essence of the Reality.
The world is in Slumber, strayed by the Delusions of the Three modes,
and thus the Night (of their life) passes.
By Guru's Grace, only those keep awake, in whose mind the Lord abides
and who utter the Nectar-Word.
Says Nanak, 'He alone attains to the Quintessence (of Reality),'
who is forever Attuned to the Lord, and passes his Night, Awake."
(Ramkali Moh. 3, Anand(27), p-920)
As long as the world remains in the cycle of Three Modes, there will be
utter Delusions and Doubts. When the five vices are in full swing, they have overwhelming control over our minds. For fruitful life we must have control over these vices. When there is no salvation from the Three Modes, there will be no heaven and the cycle of death and rebirth will continue.
"Living within the Three Modes, there is no Equipoise, for, thus, one
wanders in Doubts.
What do reading, studying and talking avail a man if he misses the
In the Fourth State (of Bliss) there is spiritual bliss and Guruwards
(Sri Rag Moh. 3, p-68, Guru Granth Sahib)
What is the Fourth State:
In this world someone is white and someone is black or brown. There is old, young or a child. There is a man and a woman. There is a Christian, a Hindu, a Muslim or a Jew. We distinguish all kinds of objects around us. But when we climb a 50-storey building and then see downwards towards the same crowd, we cannot distinguish, who is white and who is black; who is man and who is woman; who is young and who is old; who is Christian and who is Muslim? All look alike from the top of the building.
In the same way human beings make all kinds of distinctions under the influence of Three Modes. But if by the Grace of the True Guru, he climbs the 50-storey building of spirituality, he comes in touch with the Reality, vista of mind is opened and one has the Glimpse of the Divine. Then everything looks the same to him. He sees the same Divine Light equally shining in everybody. The Divine Word says:
"Amongst all there is Light. That light art Thou
By His Light, the light shines equally within all the souls."
(Dhanasri Moh. 1, p-663)
All the walls of the so called religions are broken, there is no religion. There is One
God, One Supreme Being and Only One Religion where everything is equal:
"Amongst all the religions, the most sublime is the Religion of God;
Of all the rituals and deeds, the work of God's service is the most sublime."
(Basant Mohalla 5, p-1182 )
The man sees the same Sublime Power in every direction where everything
is under His Command. There is no high and no low but it is all His Play.
Divine Word (Guru Granth Sahib) says:
"First, God created His Light and then by His Omnipotence made
From the One Light has welled up the entire universe. Then who is
good or who is bad?
O men, stray ye not in doubt.
For the Creator is in the Creation and the Creation is in the Creator.
He is fully filling all places. (Pause)
The clay is the same but the Fashioner has fashioned it in myriad ways.
There is no fault with the vessel of clay, nor there is any fault with
The One True God is midst all and it is He alone Who creates all.
Whosoever realizes His Will, knows the One alone, yea, he alone
is the servant of God.
The Unknowable Lord is seen not. The Guru has blessed me
with sweet molasses.
Says Kabir: my doubt is dispelled and now I have seen the
Immaculate God in all."
(Prabhati, Kabir, p-1349-50)
SEHAJ (Fourth State of Mind):
A key-term, representing the process of realization and spiritual ascent,
is Sehaj. Sehaj is state of Turiya, above the Three Modes (qualities). It is
transcendental state, it stands for enlightenment, serenity, spontaneous devotion.
The path of Sehaj lies in the realization of the self through the process
of prayer, meditation and devotion. It is a path of devotion that involves no
'forced' process of self-purification. It does away with all rituals, fasts, observation
of 'sacred' days and hours and caste-rituals, the path of Hatha yoga (yoga of
forced effort), observation of codes like the yogi's wearing of earrings, blowing
of the horns, carrying a patched coat and smearing the body with ashes etc.
and also occult practices. All rites and rituals are done away with. The true Guru's
disciple, practitioner of Sehaj, need not retire to the forest or mountain cave
but engaging in prayer in the early morning hours through reciting Gurbani (Divine
Word) and also performing or listening to Holy music (Kirtan) lauding the
Creator and leading the life of a true house-holder according to the code of
conduct laid down by the Guru through the Divine Word.
In essence the path of Sehaj (Fourth State of Mind) lies in exploring
spirituality and the apprehension of the Divine Presence in all Creation. A devotee
reaches a state of mind where celestial joy and bliss (Sehaj-Anand) will descend
upon him. His life becomes Nature oriented, whatever happens, he lauds the
Creator in return with thankfulness and submits to the Almighty.
The Ashatvadi 6 of Sri Rag, Mohalla 3, page 68 of Guru Granth
Sahib has fully illuminated different facets of Sehaj:
"The whole world seeks to attain the state of Equipoise (Sehaj)
but without the Guru (Lord), it is not attained.
Exhausted with learning, Pundits3 and Astrologers
Fall in sects and into delusion, are lost.
The state of Poise is attained only on meeting the Guru
Should the Lord in His Will show Mercy. (1)
O brother! There is no Poise (Sehaj) without the Guru.
It is from the Divine Word (Sabad) that poise proceeds and that
True God is obtained. (Pause)
Divine laudation with spontaneous devotion becomes acceptable
without it is all useless utterance.
Thus is all Worship that devotion emanates and thus is all Love
In the state of Poise is utter Bliss and Peace,
Without it life is all a waste. (2)
Spontaneously then Praise thy Lord and enter into the Silence
of Great Peace4.
Utter His Virtues and in deep devotion get absorbed.
Through the Word God dwells in the mind and tongue tastes
God's Nectar. (3)
By entering the Sanctuary of the True One, death is easily destroyed5
If a person practices the true way of life, God's Name abides in his mind.
Exceedingly fortunate are they who have found God and easily remain
absorbed in Him. (4)
There is no Equipoise in Maya (worldly wealth). Maya abides in Duality.
The egoist's actions brings torments of egoism.
Of such transmigration is not ended.
And ever are they born and die. (5)
Living within the Three Modes, there is no Equipoise,
for, thus, one wonders in Doubt.
What do reading, studying and talking avail a man if he misses the
In the Fourth State (of bliss) there is Spiritual Bliss and the
Guruwards (who belongs to Guru) attain it. (6)
The Name of God, the Unmanifest, is the true treasure-
The realization thereof comes in the serene Transcendent State.
The Virtuous praise God saying, ' True is the reputation of the True One'.
The Lord unites even the strayers. It is through the Name (Word)
that union is accomplished. (7)
Without attaining the transcendent state all is blind
And storms of Maya - Delusion.
Through this State comes realization,
By means of the Immeasurable Holy Word (Sabad).
And the Guru-God, in His Mercy, unites man with Himself. (8)
Through Equipoise, the Unseen, Fearless, Luminous and Formless
Lord is recognized.
Of all the beings, there is but One Bestower. The Luminous Lord
is the blender of man's light with Himself.
Praise then through the Perfect Word (Gurbani)6 thy Lord,
Who is beyond end and beyond limit. (9)
The Wise-in-God have the Name as their wealth and through
Equipoise do they Trade (with Him).
Night and day, they reap the Profit of the Lord's Name
Whose Treasures are Inexhaustible?
Nanak: When the Giver gives, he never falls
Short (of the Gifts). (10)
Those who are in Fourth State are almost in the Heaven. As long as one
Remains in the cycle of Three Modes, one cannot enter heaven. Bhagat Ravidas
enumerates his experience of the heaven. He calls that place a city by the name of Begampura meaning that there is no fear, no worry and no grief. There is no pain and no care. There are no taxes on the goods. Such is the wonder of my Fatherland that there is
always Peace and Calm. There is One Lord who rules over there. There is no
second or third but all are alike and equal. There abides only the Rich (with Nam) and
Content and they can go anywhere they want, there is no restriction. They
know the Mansion of their Lord and nobody prevents them to go there.
Whosoever is the citizen of that city, is my friend, says Ravidas:
“Begampura is the name of the city.
At that place there is no pain or care.
There is no fear of tax on goods there.
Neither awe, nor error, nor dread or decline there.
I have now found an excellent abode.
My brethren, there is ever-lasting safety there. (Pause)
Firm, stable and for aye is the sovereignty of God.
There is no second or third, He alone is there.
Populated and ever famous is that city.
The wealthy and content dwell there.
As they please, so do they stroll about.
They know the Master’s Mansion, so none does obstruct them.
Says Ravidas, the emancipated shoe-maker, he, who is his
Fellow-citizen, is also his friend.”
(Rag Gauri Ravidasji p-345, Guru Granth Sahib)
What is Bliss! It is a wonderful experience of absorption in the Absolute wherein all desires are annulled. It can be felt by meditating on His excellences and rejoicing in His Name. It is a state of mind when a devotee is intensely attached to the beloved Lord and is fully resigned to His Supreme Will. It is the devotion of a person when the body and the soul both are dedicated to Him. It is a stage of complete submission and endless patience to give in to His Will. Even the most unfavorable circumstances of life are regarded as His Sweet Will. Such a person is not subject to transmigration but is immersed in God which is a perfect communion with the Divine. The attainment of this heavenly Bliss is the goal of Sikh endeavor. This celestial bliss can neither be heard with ears nor uttered by the tongue. Pen cannot write it and language cannot describe it. It is the achievement of emancipation from Maya (materialism) and finally union with the Lord which is the highest state of spiritual Glory. Bhagat (saint) Kabir in one of his devotional hymns had asked for this Superb Ecstasy (Jiwan Mukti) and liberation from all ills during his life time. He showed complete disinterestedness in heaven. According to his expression in the hymn neither the admission into heaven nor the mere release from the cycle of rebirth and death is as high a goal as communion with God. To reach this stage only love of God should dominate every other love which is the ultimate end of all religious and spiritual quests. This is the highest ideal which Guru Nanak set before humanity. How is it realized? Guru explains:
“All talk of bliss but the Real bliss is realized only through the Guru,
When one knows eternal bliss from the Guru, then the Loved Lord shows His mercy unto him.
In His mercy the Lord dispels our evil and blesses us with the collyrium of enlightenment.
They, who have become detached within, their Word of the True Lord embellishes.
Says Nanak: Such indeed is the bliss which one knows from the Guru.”
(Ramkali Moh. 3, p-917)
SIKHISM AND HEAVEN:
Sikhism does not believe to convert others to its fold. Sikhs never tell
others to join Sikh Religion. Guru Nanak never said to people that they would go to heaven only if they had become his disciples. Sikhism never preaches, never believes and never claims that only Sikhs can go to heaven and none else. When sun shines, it shines all over the world. So Guru Nanak (the Divine Guru) stood guarantee to the
entire Humanity saying that whosoever one may be irrespective of caste,
creed, race, sex, color, religion or nationality:
“He shall become pure whosoever repeateth His (God) Name
With devotion, affection and heartfelt love.”
(Gauri Sukhmani Moh. 5, p-290)
‘He shall become pure’ means that with praise and prayer of the Almighty
he will come out of the grip of the Five Vices and then shall move towards
his goal of heaven. Divine Word says:
“Prayer and Praise of the Almighty removeth the impurities of mind
And the Ambrosial Nam then filleth the mind.”
(Gauri Sukhmani Moh. 5, p-263)
By Glorifying the Divine through the Nectar-Word, one gains the Divine
qualities or values in the process. Suppose a robber robs 10 banks every
day. When he starts sincerely and honestly the praise and prayer of the
Almighty, the negative influence of these vices will start loosen up and one
day soon he will rob 9 banks instead of 10. Then 8, 7, 6……….. and one
day he will not rob any bank. And then through the process of praise and
prayer, he will start moving towards positive direction and ultimately
towards saintlihood. Mere talk of so called heaven will not take us anywhere. The Divine Word says:
“By mere talk man goes not to Heaven
The Deliverance is by the practice of Truth alone.”
(Slok Moh. 1, p-141)
Sikhs are not afraid of hell nor they are desirous of the so called Heaven. There
is something beyond heaven too and that is God Himself. If a bucket of water is
thrown in the ocean, the water of the bucket also assumes the appearance of
the ocean itself. The Praise and Prayer of the Almighty God, shall give rise to
Nam (Name of God) inside the mind and a person is reborn in the spirit of the Guru.
As water blends with water, our souls blend with the Supreme Soul and then there
is no Heaven nor Hell but Eternal Bliss. There is no more separation from the Divine, there is no more coming and going into the world. The Divine Word says:
“His soul and body dyed with the Name of One God
Shall ever abide with the Supreme Soul.
As water blendeth with water,
So light is blended with Divine Light.
Transmigration is ended and rest obtained-
Nanak is ever a sacrifice to the Lord.”
(Gauri Sukhmani Moh. 5, p-278)
The essential character of Sikh Faith is that it endeavors to uplift the human soul
from the shackles of materialism. It aims at a virtuous life and attainment of
the highest pinnacle of spiritual advancement which leads to the realization of
of Supreme Bliss. Spiritual development is the ultimate goal of Guru’s Sikh. Therefore, a Sikh does not aspire for an empire or strive for salvation but the ultimate goal of a Sikh is to become one with Unmanifest One and to merge with the Almighty Lord.
“I desire not empire and I desire not salvation (heaven)
I crave for nothing but the love of Thy Lotus-Feet.”
(Dev Gandhari Moh. 5, p-534)
A Sikh is only desirous for the Holy Sight of the Lord and cares not for heaven
“He who drinks in the Guru’s teaching through the Nectar-Word
He seeks the Sight of the Lord at His Gate
Of what account to him, then, heaven or Deliverance?”
(Asa Moh. 1, p-360, Guru Granth Sahib)
“What is hell and what poor heaven?
God’s saints reject both of them.
Through the Grace of my Guru, I owe not any obligation to either.”
(Ramkali Kabir, p-969)
“As long as the mind cherishes hope for the heaven
So long does one abide not at the Lotus-Feet
I know not if Paradise has a moat and ramparts or is plastered
Nor know I of the gate of Paradise
Saith Kabir: what else can I say now,
Except that the Holy Congregation alone is the Real Heaven.”
(Bhairon Kabir, p-1161)
1- Any animal ( chair or table) has four legs. Four feet (four legs) are considered to be the perfect situation. So Satyug (Golden Age) was the perfect age having four feet or legs of Dharma (truth) where nothing but truth prevailed all around. Some people say that the expected age was 100,000 years in that age. Then came Treta (Silver Age) where one foot of Dharma was lost and expected age of people was 10,000 years. In Duaper (Brass Age), two feet of Dharma (truth) had gone. The average age came down to 1,000 years. After that came Kalyug (Dark Age or the Wicked Age). Now is the Kalyug which is only standing on One foot of Dharma. The expected age is around one hundred years.
2 - Hindu Holy Scriptures.
3- Learned Hindu Brahmins.
4 - Sehaj Samadh: In contradistinction to the Yogi's trance, which he brings
about through Hatha Yoga, the Sikh enters into the trance spontaneously
by concentrating his mind on the Word (Sabad).
5- There is no fear of death.
6 - Divine Word uttered by the Sikh Gurus - contents of Guru Granth Sahib.