Meaning: noun: Persian waterwheel, a traditional water lifting device.
ਕਰ ਹਰਿਹਟ ਮਾਲ ਟਿੰਡ ਪਰੋਵਹੁ ਤਿਸੁ ਭੀਤਰਿ ਮਨੁ ਜੋਵਹੁ॥
ਆਪਣੇ ਹਥਾਂ ਨੂੰ ਹਰ੍ਹਟ, ਹਰ੍ਹਟ ਦੀ ਮਾਲ੍ਹ ਤੇ ਉਸ ਮਾਲ੍ਹ ਦੀਆਂ ਟਿੰਡਾਂ ਬਣਾਓ ਅਤੇ ਉਸ ਵਿਚ ਆਪਣਾ ਮਨ ਜੋਵੋ।
kar harihaṭ maal ṭinḍ parovahu tis bheetar man jovahu.
Make your hands the Persian wheel, the chain, and the pots, and yoke the mind into it (as an ox is yoked to pull it). -Guru Nanak Sahib, Guru Granth Sahib, 1170
Message: Persian wheel or waterwheel is a device used to raise water out of the well. It is a system of a chain of earthen pots slung round a vertical wheel, which is turned by a system of cogs and interlocking wheels operated usually by animals like bullocks, buffaloes or camels.
This system of lifting water from open wells was probably discovered in ancient Egypt. With its use in Iran, it came to be called the Persian wheel and later traveled to India in the Mughal era.
The verse above asks us to make our hands the device or tool and yoke the mind into it. With the help of our mind and body (body parts such as hands etc.), we need to draw the water of divinity from within us and irrigate the field of our body with the nectar of divine love and virtues.
ਹਰਹਟ ਭੀ ਤੂੰ ਤੂੰ ਕਰਹਿ ਬੋਲਹਿ ਭਲੀ ਬਾਣਿ॥
The Persian wheels also cries out, “You! You!” and make sweet sound. -Guru Amar Das, Guru Granth Sahib, 1420
Note: In Punjabi, they are called – halat (a modification of the above term). They were very common a few decades back and every village had at least one.
Etymology: From Sanskrit araghaṭṭ (wheel for raising water) → Pali araghaṭṭ → Prakrit arahaṭṭ → Kashmiri arahaṭh and Old Gujarati arahaṭ (Persian wheel).