The wisdom of Kabir

I’ve always been a huge fan of Kabir’s simple philosophy.   There are many beautiful couplets (or what are called doha’s).  I am sharing a few doha’s that touched me.  So simple and sensible and so easy to apply in day to day life .. if only we made the effort!  The translation is just the literal translation.  I’ll let you think through the deeper philosophy that he preaches.

कबिरा जब हम पैदा हुए, जग हँसे हम रोये
ऐसी करनी कर चलो, हम हँसे जग रोये

Kabir says: “When I was born I cried and the world laughed in happiness
Please let me live a life so worthy that I laugh and the world cries as I depart this existence.”

बोली तो अनमोल है, जे कोई जाने बोल
ह्रदय तराजू तौल करि, तव मुख बाहर खोल

Words are priceless and invaluable .. if one knows the right words to say
Says Kabir:  process within you what you want to say before you let it out

हिन्दू मुए राम कहि, मुसलमान खुदाय
कह क़बीर सो जीविता, दुहु में कहा न जाय

Hindus chant the name of Rama at death and Muslims take the name of Rahim
But no one ever realises Him during their lives

धीरे धीरे रे मना, धीरे सब कुछ होय
माली सींचे सौ घड़ा, रितु आये फल होय

Please understand oh mind that everything comes to fruition at the right time .. don’t despair
A gardener can water a plant with hundred pots of water each day, but the plant only flowers in the right season

बुरा न सिखिये और का,   गुण सिखिये सब केरा
जैसे मखी मीठे चुन चुन, रस लेही अनेरा

Says Kabir: never focus on the bad qualities of a person, just focus on the good
Like a bee that sucks the sweetest honey from each flower

पानी बाढे नाव में, घर में बाढे दाम
दोऊ हाथ उलीचिये, यहि संतों के काम

When water spills into a boat, or wealth fills your coffers
Throw it out with both your hands quickly, as wise men do

दुःख में सुमिरन सब करे सुख में करै न कोय
जो सुख में सुमिरन करे दुःख काहे को होय

We pray we think of him during times of need but forget him in times of happiness
Where would there be sorrow if we prayed to him and thought of him at all times

जाती ना पूछो साधु की ,पूछ लीजिए ज्ञान
मोल करो तलवार का, पड़ा रहन दो म्यान

Never ask a wise man for his caste, focus on his wisdom
Value the sword, not the cover that it comes in

काल करे सो आज कर, आज करे सो अब
पल में प्रलय होएगी,बहुरि करेगा कब

Whatever good deed you intended to do tomorrow, do it today and whatever you intended to do later today, do it now
Because the world could come to an end in a second and you won’t be able to fulfil what you set out to do

बुरा जो देखन में चला, बुरा न मिलिया कोय
जो मन खोजा आपना, मुझसा बुरा न कोय

I searched the world in vain for a bad person
When I looked within I realised that there was no one as bad as me (as I was looking for bad)

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