Heaven on Earth
A poem written by a prisoner
“Nanak Tay Mukh Ujlay Keetee Shhuttee Naal” –Salok, Japji Sahib
“Says Nanak! Their faces are radiant and glow in the Court of God and many others are saved along with them (by doing their company).”
Why am I in shadow Vaheguru (Wondrous Lord)?
The Universe was formed by the word from Your mouth (Naam) at the start,
With sparkling jewels in dark space,
Rotating in space, the emerald Earth,
Bathed in heavenly light,
The blue sky and wavy sea, the blanket of green trees,
Fish in the sea, the birds in the air,
Dusty plains with roaming animals
All live in grace and freedom.
Majestic snow-capped mountains and,
The gasping beauty of flowers,
Wondrous mankind, individual names so dear to Your heart.
Your creation so good and perfect,
Your love so strong and pure.
As a young boy I marvelled in Your creation,
I took things apart to understand their workings,
Studied hard and become a “worldly creator” (graduate engineer),
Mine was a life of hard honest householder living (kirt karnee),
I shared the fruits of labour with others (vand kay shhaknaa),
I did a lot for charity and community work (seva),
I helped build a hospital for the poor in Punjab (sewa/ daswandh),
Been a good father to my children,
Loving husband to my wife – joined in spirit in Your presence (Anand Kaaraj),
Attending Gurdwara where I could,
I was happy outside.
I thought about Your wonders all the time
I appreciated the intricate beauty of Your complete world,
Tell me please Vaheguru, why am I in shadow?
Why am I in shadow Vaheguru?
I see around me there is greed, hatred, envy, pain and hunger.
Will the torn world ever by joyful again?
Will the air be clean and the rivers be run clear?
Will the seas be full of fish again?
Will wars be left in history?
Peace talks are held by the nations of the world,
But when will it come – will it last?
The future is uncertain as horrors unfold,
Lives are filled with despair and grief,
Some turn to drugs, drinking, crime and violence (I never did).
Many, quite simply, don’t care.
And why am I in prison and falsely accused?
Why am I experiencing loss – separated from my loving family?
Why am I confined and bound?
Part of me silently screams, “But why me?”
So many times alone, I have cried – silently from the heart…
I have been searching all along…. Searching, but for what?
At the Gurdwara, I listened, but understood little.
Deep down in me, there remained a void unfilled
I was ignorant and never had the time to seek you.
If the world was so good and so pure at the start, then why?
I’m asking and want to know why the Kalyug (Dark Age)?
Then just why Vaheguru, why am I in shadow?
Why am I in shadow, Vaheguru?
In my darkest hour I was humbled right down.
I was forced to reach out and up, in search for You more deeply.
There in that place of darkness and pain, You made me understand.
Only in the darkness, I searched within.
Only then, the glory of Your Divine Light was made known to me.
I was born a Sikh with the divine light dimly lit within me.
Sachay Pita (Truthful Father) You have given me time here to learn.
Shadows only exist where your light and presence is.
Thank you Dasmay Paatshaah (God) for the shadows,
Living within which, I know You are there – always.
With Chardee Kalaa (rising optimism) I contemplate Your Naam,
Vaheguru, Vaheguru, Vaheguru, Vaheguru….
With Your Grace, You have restored my Atma (soul).
Disobedience brought sin and death to this world.
I obey Your Hukam (Divine-Law) written deep inside me,
And walk within Your Divine Will.
My haumai (Ego) is lowering,
My understanding of Your Bani (Sacred Words) is rising.
I read it with tearful joyful eyes,
“Anand bheya mere maae, satguru mai paaya”
“O my mother! I am in spiritual joy, for I found my true Guru.”
Looking back, my mind always heard the Unstruck Melodies.
Naam is in my mind for ever and ever – bakshish (blessed)
But now I understand, I am contented, I am at peace day and night
Perfect love in the end has won through
Sachay Pita, You was longing and waiting for me since I was born,
I remain a lotus and your humble servant.
Who do I see in the mirror?
“Man Too Jyot Saroop Hai, Apnaa Mool Pashhaan”
“O mind you are the image of God, recognise your ownself.”
Your ways I cannot fathom, but,
“Your doings are sweet to me”
Thank you Vaheguru for heaven on earth”
“Vaheguru Jee Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Jee Kee Fateh”
“Of God is the Khalsa, All victory is victory of God”
“Bhul Chuk Maaf Karnee”
“Please pardon my errors.”