Gurbani Word Of The Day: baal-taṇ

ਬਾਲਤਣਿ (baal-taṇ)

Meaning: noun: Childhood.

ਦਸ ਬਾਲਤਣਿ  ਬੀਸ ਰਵਣਿ   ਤੀਸਾ ਕਾ ਸੁੰਦਰੁ ਕਹਾਵੈ॥ 
ਦਸ ਸਾਲਾਂ ਤੀਕ ਬਾਲਪਨ ਹੁੰਦਾ ਹੈ, ਵੀਹ ਵਰ੍ਹਿਆਂ ਤੱਕ ਰਵਣ -ਜੋਗ ਜੁਆਨੀ ਅਵਸਥਾ ਹੁੰਦੀ ਹੈ ਅਤੇ ਤੀਹਾਂ ਸਾਲਾਂ ਤੱਕ ਦਾ ਸੁੰਦਰ ਅਖਵਾਉਂਦਾ ਹੈ।

das baal-taṇ bees ravaṇ   teesaa kaa suňdar kahaavai.
Up to the age of ten is childhood, up to twenty is youth, and up to thirty one is called beautiful. -Guru Nanak Sahib, Guru Granth Sahib, 138

Message: Living for 100 Years!
Assume someone lives for 100 years!
In the hymn from which this verse is taken, Guru Nanak describes how one’s behavior changes as one ages.

Up to the age of 10 years old, one is a child.
At 20, one is called a young person.
Up to 30, one is considered good-looking.
At 40, one attains full maturity.
At 50, one starts faltering in one’s gait.

At 60, old age sets in.
At 70, one is devoid of senses.
At 80, one is unfit to work.
At 90, one is bed-ridden and is left with no strength to perform daily functions by oneself and after that, one’s life ends.

The above might not be exactly true in today’s world where medical wonders have made people healthier. However, whether life is short or long, it should be purpose driven – the purpose being realisation of divine potential within.

Or else, we are merely routinely and ignorantly living through the process of various stages of physical growth and decay.

Etymology: From Sanskrit baalatvana (childhood)→ Gujarati baalpaṇ (childhood).


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