The recitation of Gurbani requires a lot of focus and patience, and this is something that is missing in the ‘Pathis’ or reciters of Gurbani today. Brahamgiani Baba Sham Singh Ji did kirtan in Satguru Ramdas Ji’s Charan at sri Harmandir Sahib for over 70 years everyday without fail. Sant Ji’s views on the correct recitation of Gurbani were very strict, and his views are given below.
‘The reason why people learning Gurbani Santhia nowadays often still don’t learn how read Gurbani correctly is due to the fact that their teachers don’t put enough effort in making sure their ‘Muharni’ is perfect and without fault. For this reason instead of saying ‘Kanna’ they say ‘Mukta’, i.e. saying ‘ਆਕਾਰ’ Aakaar as Akaar ‘ਅਕਾਰ’ and ‘ਸਾਲਾਹੀ ਸਾਲਾਹ’ Saalaahi Saalaah as ‘ਸਲਾਹੀ ਸਲਾਹ’ Salaahi Salaah, i.e. shortening the vowel sounds due to improper teaching and insufficient practice. In the same way only rare people will pronounce all the letters given in a word of Gurbani.
For example when a 'ਹਾਹਾ’ or ‘H’ letter comes twice in a word many will just convert this to a ‘ਦੁਲਾਵਾਂ’. For example ‘ਕਹਹਿ’ Kahih as ‘ਕਹੈ’ Kahai, and Rahih ‘ਰਹਹਿ’ as Rahai ‘ਰਹੈ’. The reasons why students of Gurbani make these mistakes is due to them having insufficient training and practice in the ‘Muharni.’ If their ‘Muharni’ is correct then their reading of Gurbani will also be correct.
The reason for this is that even out of those teaching, only a few rare individuals will have their ‘Muharni’ perfect. The teachers of Gurbani today are too rushed and impatient, they quickly move their students onto ‘Pothis’ i.e. the small scriptures of Gurbani and then quickly move them onto reading from the Guru Granth Sahib. This is actually disrespect of Gurbani, as due to the vowels being incorrect they read Gurbani ‘Ashudh’ or incorrectly.’ – Sant Gaatha, Bhai Vir Singh Ji.