SUCHAJĪ (SUCHAJJĪ), literally, a woman of good manner and accomplishment, is the title of one of Gurū Nānak’s compositions, in measure Sūhī, in the Gurū Granth Sāhib. Antithetically, it follows another of his compositions called Kuchajī (literally, an awkward, ill-mannered woman). Suchajī ('su', meaning good or appropriate; 'chaj' meaning manner or style, with ī being the suffix of feminine singular) is the term figuratively used to typify the qualities of a gurmukh (egoless person turned towards lord). According to Janam Sākhī tradition, Gurū Nānak uttered these verses in conversation with Shaikh Brahm (Ibrāhīm), a distant spiritual successor of Shaikh Farīd of Pākpaṭṭan, whom he met in the course of one of his journeys through western Punjab. Shaikh Brahm had said that they who truly loved the Infinite Being were the true ones. Gurū Nānak elaborates and says that true love of God consists in living in accordance with His Will. The true devotee, suchajjī, remains constant in her love. However variable material circumstances may be, she abides by the will of the Almighty. Metaphorically, the poem conveys Gurū Nānak’s conception of a true devotee. Such a devotee surrenders himself completely to the will of God; his faith remains unshaken under all circumstances; whatever God ordains tastes sweet to him. A true man of God (suchajjī, in this context) is convinced that all that happens is by the command of the Lord; and that his duty is to accept His command cheerfully. He is humble and dutiful and his only desire is to attain proximity to the Lord. The poem is marked by a deeply devotional tone, its picturesque symbolism and tilting music.


    Śabdārth Srī Gurū Granth Sāhib. Amritsar, 1975

Tāran Siṅgh