In this pauri, the human tongue is addressed. It is stated that the tongue cannot be satiated by being engrossed in worldly tastes. It can be satiated only by savoring the essence of IkOankar (the Divine) through the Wisdom (Guru). When it savors the essence of IkOankar, all other tastes are forgotten. The being experiences bliss.
e   rasnā an rasi rāci rahī   terī piās na jāi.
piās na jāi horatu kitai   jicaru hari rasu   palai na pāi.
hari rasu   pāi palai pīai hari rasu   bahuṛi na trisnā lāgai āi.
ehu hari rasu   karmī pāīai   satiguru milai jisu āi.
kahai nānaku hori an ras sabhi vīsare   hari vasai mani āi.32.
-Guru Granth Sahib 921
Literal Translation
Interpretive Transcreation
Poetical Dimension
In the thirty-first pauri, the thirty-first step on the ladder, Guru Amardas made a declaration: Hari, the All-Pervasive, the 1-Light, is both his capital and wealth. His mind has undergone a transformative journey, evolving into a trader, but not of mundane commodities; he now deals in the profound currency of 1-Light, engaged in transactions with this priceless essence. Moving on to the thirty-second pauri, the thirty-second step, Guru Amardas addresses his tongue with a heartfelt plea: O tongue! You are entangled in other tastes; your thirst cannot be quenched. We pause to consider the sheer grace bestowed upon us by this gift, our tongue. The tongue tastes, conveys knowledge, sings songs that touch our core, and bridges our thoughts into the world. Our tongues are essential vessels for our vocal expressions. Yet, Guru Amardas reminds us that our tongues often seek fleeting pleasures in various tastes, leaving our inner thirst unquenched. So, we ponder: How can we achieve that deep satisfaction, that quenching of the thirst within? The answer is profound and simple—embracing the taste and essence of Hari, the 1-Light. Guru Amardas imparts wisdom to his tongue, emphasizing that no matter what it utters, tastes, converses, or sings, none of these actions will satiate its true thirst. Genuine satisfaction is only found when one fully embraces oneself in the taste of the 1-Light, cradling it in one’s lap and drinking from its infinite essence. This taste of the 1-Light can only be truly acquired through the grace that transpires with an encounter with the eternal Wisdom. This eternal Wisdom possesses the power to quench the unyielding thirst of the tongue. In contrast, all other fleeting tastes only lead to a sense of separation and forgetfulness. While Guru Amardas addresses the tongue directly, his message is extended to the mind. He conveys that the ultimate flavor of anand, of bliss, will remain elusive until the 1-Light permeates the mind and finds its way to the tongue. Guru Amardas concludes this ladder step with a profoundly stirring statement: Other tastes are all forgotten when Hari comes to dwell in the mind.

We reflect on our tongue’s vital role in our daily lives and the profound significance it holds in our relentless pursuit of bliss. When our tongue utters words devoid of sweetness, it feels like a barren field, lacking the richness and vibrancy that life should inherently possess. It’s akin to a bird without a melody, lost in the vast emptiness of a songless sky when we sing tasteless songs. The use of abusive language becomes a turbulent storm, disrupting the otherwise serene sea of our words. Spreading gossip, in turn, acts as a thief, stealthily stealing away our peace of mind. Consuming these things isn’t just a mistake; it’s like adding impurities to life’s elixir, hindering our journey toward true bliss. How can we ever hope to experience genuine bliss if our tongues remain entangled in these unpalatable pursuits? Much like tireless bees, our tongues often flit from one fleeting flavor to another, driven by ceaseless desires. This relentless pursuit obstructs us from savoring the everlasting oasis of anand, the fountain of true bliss. While we acknowledge the place of these other tastes, it’s crucial to understand that they cannot quench the profound thirst within, nor can they allow the taste of the 1-Light to saturate our very being. While our primary focus is on the tongue as the gateway to these myriad tastes, the underlying message extends to the mind, the epicenter of our unquenchable desires. Thirst, at its core, is the yearning of our endless desires. How then can we satiate this profound thirst that echoes within us? It’s not merely a matter of dismissing these other tastes and flavors as negative; they indeed have their place in the grand flavors of life. However, it’s crucial to understand that they won’t quench our deeper thirst or allow the taste of the 1-Light to permeate our being. True satiation unfolds when, through grace, we establish a profound connection with the eternal Wisdom. Worldly flavors naturally fade away in this divine connection, dissipating like mist under the radiant sun of the eternal Wisdom. As the tongue relinquishes its pursuit of fleeting tastes, the body transforms into an instrument and a sacred vessel, now receptive to the purest, most divine taste—the taste and essence of the 1-Light. Savoring this divine taste becomes more than a mere action; it’s akin to relishing the purest ambrosial delight, an enriching feast that invigorates every facet of our existence. Life, in these moments, transcends mere existence; it pulsates with vibrancy and purpose. The deep absorption in the taste of the 1-Light isn’t just a quenching; it’s an elevation to the sublime realm of anand, the transcendent bliss. In the depths of our beings, do we truly comprehend the nature of our thirst and the profound bliss that awaits its quenching?

We may ask ourselves: Do we desire to experience true bliss? Are we conscious of the critical roles played by the tongue and the mind in our pursuit of bliss? What really quenches our thirst? Can we identify the other flavors and distractions we indulge in and how they influence our quest for bliss?