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20 Motivational Quotes by Guru Nanak Dev Ji

The leader, sage and guiding light to spirituality, divinity and fraternal love, whose words are gospel for millions and trillions of people across the globe, is no one but the Guru himself – Guru Nanak Dev Ji!

Guru Nanak Dev Ji traversed miles to build a place based on equality, fraternal love and goodness based on the concept ‘Ik Onkar’ (one God). He placed his faith in one God and dedicated his life to selfless service, bringing a dawn of social justice and prosperity upon humankind.

The founder of Sikhism and first of the ten Sikh gurus, his teachings recorded in Gurmukhi are safeguarded in the holy Guru Granth Sahib. Through ages, his lessons have paved the way for many who felt lost, bewildered and trapped in the vicious cycle of whims and fancies.

To lighten up your mood and of course, your mind, we bring to you 20 most inspirational and impactful teachings by Guru Nanak Ji. 

Fact: The traditional birth stories of the Sikh gurus were called ‘janamsakhis’.

20 Quotes, 20 Lessons by Guru Nanak Ji:

These are not merely words but a source of motivation and stimulation towards leading a life with a purpose. The Guru’s hymns radiate not only faith, but also virtues. Make haste to start your journey towards leading a spiritual, calm and fruitful life with these powerful quotes by Guru Nanak Dev Ji. 

1. Ignorance

Motivational Quotes by Guru Nanak Dev Ji - ignorance

“Owing to ignorance of the rope, the rope appears to be a snake; owing to ignorance of the Self, the transient state arises of the individualized, limited, phenomenal aspect of the Self.”

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2. Existence of God

Existence of God

“There is but one God. True is His Name, creative His personality and immortal His form. He is without fear sans enmity, unborn and self-illumined. By the Guru’s grace He is obtained.”

3. Happiness


 “In this world, when you ask of happiness, Pain steps forward”

4. Equality


 “He who regards all men as equals is religious.”

5. Faith


“He who has no faith in himself can never have faith in God.”

6. Death


“Death would not be called bad, O people, if one knew how to truly die.”

7. Worldly Love

Worldly Love

”Burn worldly love, rub the ashes and make ink of it, make the heart the pen, the intellect the writer, write that which has no end or limit.”

8. Mind Control

Mind Control

“Conquer your mind and conquer the world.”

9. Life


“The world is a drama staged in a dream.”

10. Wealth


“Even Kings and emperors with heaps of wealth and vast dominion cannot compare with an ant filled with the love of God.”

Fact: Guru Nanak Dev Ji preached gender equality and was against ill-practices against women like sati (widows burnt alive along with husbands).

11. Peace


“Dwell in peace in the home of your own being, and the Messenger of Death will not be able to touch you.”

12. Sin


“Only fools argue whether to eat meat or not. They don’t understand truth, nor do they meditate on it. Who can define what is meat and what is plant? Who knows where the sin lies, being a vegetarian.”

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13. Gender


“I am neither male nor female, nor am I sexless. I am the Peaceful One, whose form is self-effulgent, powerful radiance.”

14. Sharing


“If people use the wealth bestowed on them by God for themselves alone or for treasuring it, it is like a corpse. But if they decide to share it with others, it becomes sacred food.”

 15. Fear


“What should the yogi have to fear? Trees, plants, and all that is inside and outside, is He Himself.”

16. Asceticism


 “Asceticism doesn’t lie in mere words; He is an ascetic who treats everyone alike. Asceticism doesn’t lie in visiting burial places; it lies not in wandering about nor in bathing at places of pilgrimage.

17. Solitude


“Alone let him constantly meditate in solitude on that which is salutary for his soul, for he who meditates in solitude attains supreme bliss.”

18. Birth


 “I am not the born; how can there be either birth or death for me?”

19. Truth


“Realization of Truth is higher than all else. Higher still is truthful living.”

20. Manner of speaking

Manner of speaking

“Speak only that which will bring you honour.”

Fact: Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s son Sri Chand became the founder of Udasi religion.

The lessons imparted by Guru Nanak Dev Ji have set the stage for success of millions across the globe. They have been successful in finding their true essence and capitalizing it to grow in life.

As a mark of celebration, the world comes together in joy and delight on Guru Nanak Jayanti, the Guru’s birth anniversary and reflects on his selfless service throughout his lifetime. Poems and prayers are recited and the celebrations end by serving the destitute through which the followers attain myriad satisfaction. 

While on one hand, the satisfied faction finds meaning in life, on the other hand, the discontent faction drowns in insatiable desire.

Like all of us, if you wish to find purpose and strength, then the Guru’s way is the ideal way!

Also Read – Best Quotes From The ‘Bhagavad Gita’

Written by Prachi Bora

Born and brought up in Guwahati, Assam, I have always been galvanized towards a diverse and dynamic career. My interests expand across fields like writing, finance, marketing and public speaking. As a life science student, my favourite genre of writing has to be health and wellness.
Besides, to ensure personal growth everyday, I jot down one lesson each day had to teach me.

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