“If pride enters a devotees heart when he comes to attend a religious congregation, then he stands to gain nothing. Whoever wishes to derive the maximum benefit from a holy congregation, and to reap the fruit of crores of ‘yagyas’ (sacrificial rituals), should do the following four things. Look, you labour, but if you work in a wrong manner and sow seed in dry land, it does not sprout into plant. It is either burnt by heat or eaten by termite. Only seed that is sown in wet land, in the right manner, at a proper depth and in the right season sprouts and bears fruit. Similarly, when you attend a holy congregation of the true, you should keep four things in mind.
First, start from home with faith and devotion. In this manner, all the distance travelled and time spent to reach the place of congregation is accounted for in heaven where abide Guru Nanak Sahib and the Tenth Master Sri Guru Gobind Singh. There, like a computer, our presence is accounted for in heaven. Instead of taking us to be present in the mundane world, we are considered present in the court of God Almighty. Whether one comes on foot or on a vehicle, one’s mind and heart should be focused on the holy congregation. Even more than this, the moment a man starts thinking that he is to attend the holy congregation and so must finish his worldly tasks, the entire period of time from that moment is accounted for in heaven. If he starts finishing his tasks from the previous day, the time spent in doing so is also reckoned in heaven provided he has faith and devotion.
Secondly, when you come here, you must pay obeisance with love and reverence. What is your gain? When you bow your head to the Guru, you will be rid of your evil deeds and good deeds will naturally take their place.
Thirdly, you should come here in utter humility after shedding all sense of pride. If you come with pride in your heart, you have nothing to gain here. Don’t come here with a sense of importance of your power and position. At the Guru’s threshold everyone is a cipher, a non-entity. We are mere beggars seeking favours, “Lord God! Give us this; give us that.” And our prayers are granted by the bountiful and gracious God.
Finally, you should listen to the discourse with total concentration of mind; first listen here attentively, and then remember it at home ; it is only then you reap full advantage of attending a holy congregation. This is the fourth thing that you should keep in mind.”
-Sant Waryam Singh Ji, Atam Marg Magazine