Gurbani Word Of The Day: mirtak

ਮਿਰਤਕ (mirtak)
Meaning: noun: Corpse.

ਜੇ ਮਿਰਤਕ ਕਉ ਚੰਦਨੁ ਚੜਾਵੈ॥ ਉਸ ਤੇ ਕਹਹੁ ਕਵਨ ਫਲ ਪਾਵੈ॥
je mirtak kau chaňdan chaṛaavai.
us te kahahu kavan phal paavai.
If someone anoints a corpse with sandalwood, what can the corpse obtain from it? -Guru Arjan Sahib, Guru Granth Sahib, 1160

One of the most beautiful places in all the world has to be The Golden Temple in Amritsar, India. It’s the most important temple of the Sikh religion, and an incredible place of peace and beauty. Sikh pilgrims come from all over the world to meditate here and are welcomed by open arms and incredible kindness. The site has a free dormitory (even for western visitors) and the cafeteria serves 20,000 free meals a day. Originally a lake known for it’s beauty, that many, even the Buddha, came to meditate at. The temple in the middle of the lake was completed in 1604. It has unfortunately been the site of many battles involving the Sikhs, but remains a place of peace. As you walk around the lake, barefooted and listening to the peaceful music and nonstop reading of the Sikh holy verses, you’re greeted warmly by pilgrims and local Sikhs, all happy to see foreigners enjoying their place of peace.

Message: Are rituals during cremation necessary?
Does it matter if the body is washed with milk, yoghurt, and honey, etc., or if it is smeared with anything of less value?

Does it matter if the body or the pyre is sprinkled with ghee (clarified butter), or if the casket is decorated with flowers and fragrance or sandalwood?

What good is veneration of a dead body then? Such rituals cannot bring any good or any peace to us or the dead.

It is more important to realise the presence of the Divine in people around us and respect them and serve them when they are alive and around.

Etymology: From Sanskrit mruti (death) and/or mrutk (earth, clay, dust), hence dead.



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