Inscribing the Mool Mantar or Mul Mantar
When the Covid-19 restrictions came in place last March, like many other wedding services. I received phone calls, emails and notifications from customers cancelling their bookings.
Finding myself disheartened and despondent. I thought, well this is the perfect time to tidy my scriptorium. Sort through the inks, paints, paper and nibs. Great all done, it was wonderful to see the scriptorium looking so tidy.
But then, I found my sitting at my desk looking blankly at my inks and nibs, wondering what am I to do now? Like a bolt from the sky, it struck me! There’s a heap of projects that I’ve had on the long finger. You know the ones. The ones that you will do when you have a moment. I have the time now, I thought to myself. And, as that thought entered my mind. I knew exactly, what I was going to do.
A while back; my cousin had suggested that I inscribe the Mool Mantar or Mul Mantar. A prayer that all Sikh children learn to recite. Even though I know this prayer by heart, I wanted to learn more before I started to inscribe it.
The word, Mool means root, main or chief. And Mantar means magic chant or magic potion. Together the words Mool Mantar mean main chant or root verse. This beautiful prayer encapsulates the Sikh Philosophy.
The Mool Mantar is the foundation of Sikh philosophy. And, is the opening prayer of the Sikh Holy Scriptures known as the Guru Granth Sahib. It was composed by Guru Nanak Dev Ji, the founder of Sikhism.
It is said.
That Guru Nanak Dev Ji composed the Mool Mantra after his Journey of Enlightenment. He was around 30 years old. And, had walked 28,000 kilometres covering most of the Indian sub-continent and parts of the middle east. Reaching; his final destination in the Punjab 24 years later. This is when he set the founded and formalised the three pillars of the Sikh faith. The Mool Mantar encapsulates Sikh philosophy.
Like with every piece I inscribe I always love to more. Learning about Guru Nanak’s journey was inspiring. With a better understanding of the meaning, the journey and the importance. I took out my tools. And, embarked on my journey inscribing this beautiful prayer.
My desk was busy and untidy while I worked. Just the way I like it. The piece that I was about to produce was going to be for my family. And, like me, a few cousins didn’t learn Gurbani. So, it made sense to use Gurbani, phonetic Gurbani and English.
The colours I choose, all represent something. Blue, the Kalsa,” Orange, the saffron of India. And, Brown, the earth and the universe.
A few weeks later, I held my breathe as I cautiously shared it with my family and asked: “Would anyone like a copy?” To my utter amazement and surprise, they loved it! I was in shock and bowled over. It took me a few days to settle myself before organising prints and posting them off.
If you would like a copy as well. You can order through my shop.
Here are some of the resources I used to learn about Guru Nanak’s journey to enlightement.