Good quality English translations of Sri Guru Granth Sahib ji are very rare, if any. In any case, the words of Brahmgyanis (People who are in tune with the Celestial Formless Creator) can be understood completely only by Brahmgyanis. It is like asking someone who has never seen an elephant, but only read about it, to describe how an elephant looks like. However, your spiritual journey needs a starting point. For me, this has always been kathas (spoken discourse) of Giani Maskeen ji, or the Punjabi translation of Sri Guru Granth Sahib ji by Prof. Sahib Singh ji.
Please find attached interpretations of the Sukhmani Sahib (one of the many prayers withing Sri Guru Granth Sahib ji) in English. This commentary pulls out key thoughts from the Sukhmani Sahib and tries to explain. This is work in progress, only a short part completed so far.
Sikhs treat Sri Guru Granth Sahib as the Living Treasure of Knowledge, as the Guiding Master on the spiritual journey and embodiment of Word form of the God. The word Guru literally means a teacher in Hindi. The advice that comes from Sri Guru Granth Sahib ji is timeless and unchanging, rather than worldly knowledge which is ever changing.
What does the Guru say about the kind of teaching that needs to be practiced with the students? Read below:
ਪਾਧਾ ਪੜਿਆ ਆਖੀਐ ਬਿਦਿਆ ਬਿਚਰੈ ਸਹਜਿ ਸੁਭਾਇ ॥
We call person learned, if through the internalisation of his knowledge, he finds peace and his mind stays at rest.
ਬਿਦਿਆ ਸੋਧੈ ਤਤੁ ਲਹੈ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮ ਲਿਵ ਲਾਇ ॥
He ventures inwards through the map of his knowledge, and by focusing attention on the True Name he attunes to Divine One.
ਮਨਮੁਖੁ ਬਿਦਿਆ ਬਿਕ੍ਰਦਾ ਬਿਖੁ ਖਟੇ ਬਿਖੁ ਖਾਇ ॥
The self willed teacher (who has not subdued his mind) is only a knowledge seller. Little does he know that this trade is a poison that finishes the spiritual purpose of his life.
ਮੂਰਖੁ ਸਬਦੁ ਨ ਚੀਨਈ ਸੂਝ ਬੂਝ ਨਹ ਕਾਇ ॥੫੩॥
Such people are fools, they have not understood the Eternal Word and have no intuitive knowledge.
ਪਾਧਾ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਆਖੀਐ ਚਾਟੜਿਆ ਮਤਿ ਦੇਇ ॥
A wise teacher follows precisely the teachings of God Guru and gives the same instruction to his disciples.
ਨਾਮੁ ਸਮਾਲਹੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਸੰਗਰਹੁ ਲਾਹਾ ਜਗ ਮਹਿ ਲੇਇ ॥
He tells his students to praise the Lord’s Name, the manifestation of God. To collect Naam which is the only profitable trade in this world.
ਸਚੀ ਪਟੀ ਸਚੁ ਮਨਿ ਪੜੀਐ ਸਬਦੁ ਸੁ ਸਾਰੁ ॥
His own heart becomes the slate on which he writes the word of the True Guru, and thus his own mind is cleansed of evil. This is the best learning.
ਨਾਨਕ ਸੋ ਪੜਿਆ ਸੋ ਪੰਡਿਤੁ ਬੀਨਾ ਜਿਸੁ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮੁ ਗਲਿ ਹਾਰੁ ॥੫੪॥੧॥
Such a teacher is then called wise and learned who wears the garland of Lord’s Name
Traditionally, Guru Nanak Dev ji’s prakash purab (the day He spread forth His light on this earth) is celebrated on the full moon night of a specific lunar month. This year, this day coincided with the Supermoon. Here is a photo of the Golden Temple with the supermoon visible in the background:
My message sent out for this year’s Gurpurab greeting:
Kot karam karai hao dhare || Sram pavai sagle birthare || (278)
Hao vich maya, Hao vich chhaya || (466)
Kirpa kare je aapni, tan Gur ka Shabad kamahe || Nanak kahai sunho jano, eet sanjam dukh jai || (466)
By engaging in good deeds alone we cannot lose our egoistical pride. This pride causes to remain attached to Maya, and deprives us from appreciating Divine Bounties. Even millions of good deeds, done under the false influence of Maya – go waste. While we may have laboured, we do not receive Divine Respect. Reciting the Lord’s Name under the True Guru’s instructions, this veil of ego is removed and we are enraptured in Divine Love. Such a path is obtained by great fortune, and through the Lotus Feet of the Guru. Dhan Guru Nanak.
One of the central teachings of Guru Nanak was to see God as embodied in His Creation and recitation of His Greatness with loving devotion.
Today is Basant Panchami, an Indian festival of spring. The flowers are in full bloom – an image below, shot and edited completely on my Sony Xperia Z2. There are lots of colours all around.
Sikhism believes only in worship of One God, Who is Unborn and all pervading. He is the Creator, the Preserver and the Destroyer. The following is a translation of Basant Ki Vaar (Ode of Basant) by the Fifth Guru, Guru Arjan Dev ji. While spring is one of the four seasons, here Guru ji speaks of everlasting spring within our heart and mind which is the culmination of worship and surrender to God.
ਬਸੰਤ ਕੀ ਵਾਰ ਮਹਲੁ ੫
बसंत की वार महलु ५
Basanṯ kī vār mahal 5
Basant Kee Vaar, Fifth Mehl:
ੴ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ ॥
ੴ सतिगुर प्रसादि ॥
Ik▫oaŉkār saṯgur parsāḏ.
One Universal Creator God. By The Grace Of The True Guru:
ਹਰਿ ਕਾ ਨਾਮੁ ਧਿਆਇ ਕੈ ਹੋਹੁ ਹਰਿਆ ਭਾਈ ॥
हरि का नामु धिआइ कै होहु हरिआ भाई ॥
Har kā nām ḏẖi▫ā▫e kai hohu hari▫ā bẖā▫ī.
Meditate on the Lord’s Name, and blossom forth in green abundance.
ਕਰਮਿ ਲਿਖੰਤੈ ਪਾਈਐ ਇਹ ਰੁਤਿ ਸੁਹਾਈ ॥
करमि लिखंतै पाईऐ इह रुति सुहाई ॥
Karam likẖanṯai pā▫ī▫ai ih ruṯ suhā▫ī.
By your high destiny, you have been blessed with this wondrous spring of the soul.
ਵਣੁ ਤ੍ਰਿਣੁ ਤ੍ਰਿਭਵਣੁ ਮਉਲਿਆ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਫਲੁ ਪਾਈ ॥
वणु त्रिणु त्रिभवणु मउलिआ अम्रित फलु पाई ॥
vaṇ ṯariṇ ṯaribẖavaṇ ma▫oli▫ā amriṯ fal pā▫ī.
The whole universe has blossomed forth, obtaining the Fruit of Ambrosial Nectar.
ਮਿਲਿ ਸਾਧੂ ਸੁਖੁ ਊਪਜੈ ਲਥੀ ਸਭ ਛਾਈ ॥
मिलि साधू सुखु ऊपजै लथी सभ छाई ॥
Mil sāḏẖū sukẖ ūpjai lathī sabẖ cẖẖā▫ī.
Meeting with the Holy Saints, peace wells up, and all sins are erased.
ਨਾਨਕੁ ਸਿਮਰੈ ਏਕੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਫਿਰਿ ਬਹੁੜਿ ਨ ਧਾਈ ॥੧॥
नानकु सिमरै एकु नामु फिरि बहुड़ि न धाई ॥१॥
Nānak simrai ek nām fir bahuṛ na ḏẖā▫ī. ||1||
O Nanak, remember in meditation the One Name, and you shall never again be consigned to the womb of reincarnation.. ||1||
ਪੰਜੇ ਬਧੇ ਮਹਾਬਲੀ ਕਰਿ ਸਚਾ ਢੋਆ ॥
पंजे बधे महाबली करि सचा ढोआ ॥
Panje baḏẖe mahābalī kar sacẖā dẖo▫ā.
The five powerful desires are bound down, when you lean on the True Lord.
ਆਪਣੇ ਚਰਣ ਜਪਾਇਅਨੁ ਵਿਚਿ ਦਯੁ ਖੜੋਆ ॥
आपणे चरण जपाइअनु विचि दयु खड़ोआ ॥
Āpṇe cẖaraṇ japā▫i▫an vicẖ ḏa▫yu kẖaṛo▫ā.
The Lord Himself leads us to dwell at His Feet. He stands right in our midst.
ਰੋਗ ਸੋਗ ਸਭਿ ਮਿਟਿ ਗਏ ਨਿਤ ਨਵਾ ਨਿਰੋਆ ॥
रोग सोग सभि मिटि गए नित नवा निरोआ ॥
Rog sog sabẖ mit ga▫e niṯ navā niro▫ā.
All sorrows and sicknesses are eradicated, and you become ever-fresh and rejuvenated.
ਦਿਨੁ ਰੈਣਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਧਿਆਇਦਾ ਫਿਰਿ ਪਾਇ ਨ ਮੋਆ ॥
दिनु रैणि नामु धिआइदा फिरि पाइ न मोआ ॥
Ḏin raiṇ nām ḏẖi▫ā▫iḏā fir pā▫e na mo▫ā.
Night and day, meditate on the Naam, the Name of the Lord. You shall never again die.
ਜਿਸ ਤੇ ਉਪਜਿਆ ਨਾਨਕਾ ਸੋਈ ਫਿਰਿ ਹੋਆ ॥੨॥
जिस ते उपजिआ नानका सोई फिरि होआ ॥२॥
Jis ṯe upji▫ā nānkā so▫ī fir ho▫ā. ||2||
And the One, from whom we came, O Nanak, into Him we merge once again. ||2||
ਕਿਥਹੁ ਉਪਜੈ ਕਹ ਰਹੈ ਕਹ ਮਾਹਿ ਸਮਾਵੈ ॥
किथहु उपजै कह रहै कह माहि समावै ॥
Kithhu upjai kah rahai kah māhi samāvai.
Where do we come from? Where do we live? Where do we go in the end?
ਜੀਅ ਜੰਤ ਸਭਿ ਖਸਮ ਕੇ ਕਉਣੁ ਕੀਮਤਿ ਪਾਵੈ ॥
जीअ जंत सभि खसम के कउणु कीमति पावै ॥
Jī▫a janṯ sabẖ kẖasam ke ka▫uṇ kīmaṯ pāvai.
All creatures belong to God, our Lord and Master. Who can place a value on Him?
ਕਹਨਿ ਧਿਆਇਨਿ ਸੁਣਨਿ ਨਿਤ ਸੇ ਭਗਤ ਸੁਹਾਵੈ ॥
कहनि धिआइनि सुणनि नित से भगत सुहावै ॥
Kahan ḏẖi▫ā▫in suṇan niṯ se bẖagaṯ suhāvai.
Those who meditate, listen and chant, those devotees are blessed and beautified.
ਅਗਮੁ ਅਗੋਚਰੁ ਸਾਹਿਬੋ ਦੂਸਰੁ ਲਵੈ ਨ ਲਾਵੈ ॥
अगमु अगोचरु साहिबो दूसरु लवै न लावै ॥
Agam agocẖar sāhibo ḏūsar lavai na lāvai.
The Lord God is Inaccessible and Unfathomable; there is no other equal to Him.
ਸਚੁ ਪੂਰੈ ਗੁਰਿ ਉਪਦੇਸਿਆ ਨਾਨਕੁ ਸੁਣਾਵੈ ॥੩॥੧॥
सचु पूरै गुरि उपदेसिआ नानकु सुणावै ॥३॥१॥
Sacẖ pūrai gur upḏesi▫ā Nānak suṇāvai. ||3||1||
The Perfect Guru has taught this Truth. Nanak proclaims it to the world. ||3||1||
November 17th is being celebrated this year as the day Guru Nanak came to this earth. The foremost of His teachings was to stay detached from Maya (worldly pleasures) and always thank the Creator for his bounties. Simple living and serving to other beings were advocated.
Sharing below a greeting card which can be used to spread His Divine Message. (Click on the image to see bigger, two versions)
This first quote about Guru Nanak’s coming to this earth is from a ballad by Bhai Gurdas (Vaar 1, Pauri 24). The second quote, Guru Nanak’s message about devotion and humility is from Guru Nanak’s primary writing “Asa ki vaar“, and appears within Sri Guru Granth Sahib at Ang 470. Recital of God’s name under Guru’s guidance is important towards separating oneself from Maya (worldly pleasures) which then leads you to God.
Recently returned from a visit to Sachkhand Sri Hazur Sahib. This was the last residing place for the Tenth Guru. The journey was enjoyable, and the time spent very gainfully. I wished I could stay a few more days.
On the way, I spent some time thinking about what would constitute the most important place of pilgrimage. I share below some thoughts by the Gurus on this:
The feet of the Holy
Our mind and home
The Lord’s name and discussion of the Divine Word
The congregation of the Holy
Satguru, the Divine Guide
The feet of the Holy:
ਜਨ ਪਾਰਬ੍ਰਹਮ ਜਾ ਕੀ ਨਿਰਮਲ ਮਹਿਮਾ ਜਨ ਕੇ ਚਰਨ ਤੀਰਥ ਕੋਟਿ ਗੰਗਾ ॥
Jan pārbarahm jā kī nirmal mahimā jan ke cẖaran ṯirath kot gangā.
Immaculate and pure are the praises of the humble servants of the Supreme Lord God; the feet of His humble servants are equal to millions of Ganges (sacred shrines of pilgrimage).
Our mind and home:
ਮਨੁ ਮੰਦਰੁ ਤਨੁ ਵੇਸ ਕਲੰਦਰੁ ਘਟ ਹੀ ਤੀਰਥਿ ਨਾਵਾ ॥
Man manḏar ṯan ves kalanḏar gẖat hī ṯirath nāvā.
The Lord’s Name enshrined within, my mind has become a temple. My body is the simple cloth of the humble seeker; and my home is the bathing of a sacred pilgrimage.
The Lord’s name and discussion of the Divine Word:
ਤੀਰਥਿ ਨਾਵਣ ਜਾਉ ਤੀਰਥੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਹੈ ॥
Ŧirath nāvaṇ jā▫o ṯirath nām hai.
Lets all bathe at sacred shrines: The Naam, the Name of the Lord, is the sacred shrine of pilgrimage.
ਤੀਰਥੁ ਸਬਦ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ ਅੰਤਰਿ ਗਿਆਨੁ ਹੈ ॥
Ŧirath sabaḏ bīcẖār anṯar gi▫ān hai.
My sacred shrine of pilgrimage is contemplation of Divine Words, which leads to spiritual wisdom within.
The congregation of the Holy:
ਰਾਮਦਾਸਿ ਸਰੋਵਰ ਨਾਤੇ ॥
Rāmḏās sarovar nāṯe.
By bathing in a pool of God Servants
ਸਭ ਲਾਥੇ ਪਾਪ ਕਮਾਤੇ ॥੨॥
Sabẖ lāthe pāp kamāṯe. ||2||
all the sins committed are washed off.
Satguru, the Divine Guide:
ਤੀਰਥੁ ਪੂਰਾ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੋ ਅਨਦਿਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਧਿਆਏ ॥
Ŧirath pūrā saṯgurū jo an▫ḏin har har nām ḏẖi▫ā▫e.
The True Guru is the Perfect Pilgrimage, Who remains ever absorbed in the Lord’s Name – night and day.
So, what does this mean? Should we not visit physical places of pilgrimage like Hazur Sahib?
We should because our mind has not yet been purified, and needs to understand the Guru’s Word. However, when we are at a place of pilgrimage, we should engage in these True Pilgrimage activities and not just enjoy visiting and babbling. Sikhism is perhaps unique in this respect.
It has been some time since my last post on this blog, things have been quite busy. Today I am sharing a Gurbani Plaque with you all, for the purpose of printing and putting at home or office.
Its available in SVG format as well, which means it can be enlarged to any size, as large as needed. For those without the knowledge on using this format, a JPG format is also available (which is a simple image):
I have written about many Indian festivals, but never about Holi. It is the Hindu festival of colours, much like Diwali being the festival of lights.
For Sikhism, colours are strong depictions of mental state. There is no physical relevance to colours. A Sikh is expected to wear ordinary clothes that do not attract attention. Neither is playing with colours encouraged.
A key ingredient used during holi is called Gulal. Its a deep red coloured powder which is used to colour others. The Guru says this about Gulal:
ਚੀਤਿ ਆਵੈ ਤਾਂ ਰੰਗਿ ਗੁਲਾਲ ॥
When my mind is attached to Him, I am dyed in the deep crimson of His Love.
In the daily Sikh prayer, the first reference to the word colour appears in Japuji Sahib.
ਭਰੀਐ ਮਤਿ ਪਾਪਾ ਕੈ ਸੰਗਿ ॥
But when the intellect is stained and polluted by sins committed by us,
ਓਹੁ ਧੋਪੈ ਨਾਵੈ ਕੈ ਰੰਗਿ ॥
it can only be cleansed by the colour (Love) of His Name.
Sri Guru Granth Sahib recognises two colours: Kusumbh and Majith. Kusumbh is light orange in colour, while Majith is dark red, even crimson. Kusumbh is the color of a flower (Butea monosperma) called “flame of the forest” (called FF henceforth in this post). When its immersed in water for a few hours, the flower looses its colour, and the water becomes coloured.
When Guru Nanak was visiting Mecca, he was asked whether Hinduism was the greater religion or Islam. His reply was as under:
ਕਚਾ ਰੰਗੁ ਕਸੁੰਭ ਦਾ ਪਾਣੀ ਧੋਤੈ ਥਿਰ ਨ ਰਹੋਈ।
As the colour of FF flower is impermanent and is washed away in water, likewise the colours of religiosity are also temporary.
To the contrary, majith is permanent. Its effects are not physical, rather its colouring is for the soul:
ਮਨਮੁਖੁ ਰੰਗੁ ਕਸੁੰਭੁ ਹੈ ਕਚੂਆ ਜਿਉ ਕੁਸਮ ਚਾਰਿ ਦਿਨ ਚਾਗਾ ॥
The self-willed manmukh is like the false color of the FF flower, which fades away; its color lasts for only a few days.
ਖਿਨ ਮਹਿ ਬਿਨਸਿ ਜਾਇ ਪਰਤਾਪੈ ਡੰਡੁ ਧਰਮ ਰਾਇ ਕਾ ਲਾਗਾ ॥੨॥
He perishes in an instant; he is tormented, and punished by the Righteous Judge of Dharma. ||2||
ਸਤਸੰਗਤਿ ਪ੍ਰੀਤਿ ਸਾਧ ਅਤਿ ਗੂੜੀ ਜਿਉ ਰੰਗੁ ਮਜੀਠ ਬਹੁ ਲਾਗਾ ॥
The Lord’s Love, found in the Sat Sangat, the True Congregation, is absolutely permanent, and colorfast.
ਕਾਇਆ ਕਾਪਰੁ ਚੀਰ ਬਹੁ ਫਾਰੇ ਹਰਿ ਰੰਗੁ ਨ ਲਹੈ ਸਭਾਗਾ ॥੩॥
The cloth of the body may be torn to shreds, but still, this beautiful color of the Lord’s Love does not fade away. ||3||
ਹਰਿ ਚਾਰ੍ਹਿਓ ਰੰਗੁ ਮਿਲੈ ਗੁਰੁ ਸੋਭਾ ਹਰਿ ਰੰਗਿ ਚਲੂਲੈ ਰਾਂਗਾ ॥
Meeting with the Blessed Guru, one is dyed in the color of the Lord’s Love, imbued with this deep crimson color.
So how does the Guru celebrate Holi. The answer is obvious:
ਹੋਲੀ ਕੀਨੀ ਸੰਤ ਸੇਵ ॥
Holī kīnī sanṯ sev.
I celebrate the festival of Holi by serving the Saints.
ਰੰਗੁ ਲਾਗਾ ਅਤਿ ਲਾਲ ਦੇਵ ॥੨॥
Rang lāgā aṯ lāl ḏev. ||2||
I am imbued with the deep crimson color of the Lord’s Divine Love. ||2|
Finally I want to share another related hymn:
ਲਾਲ ਰੰਗੁ ਤਿਸ ਕਉ ਲਗਾ ਜਿਸ ਕੇ ਵਡਭਾਗਾ ॥
One is dyed in the (red) color of the Lord’s Love, by great good fortune.
ਮੈਲਾ ਕਦੇ ਨ ਹੋਵਈ ਨਹ ਲਾਗੈ ਦਾਗਾ ॥੧॥
This color is never muddied; no stain ever sticks to it. ||1||
ਪ੍ਰਭੁ ਪਾਇਆ ਸੁਖਦਾਈਆ ਮਿਲਿਆ ਸੁਖ ਭਾਇ ॥
He finds God, the Giver of peace, with feelings of joy.
ਸਹਜਿ ਸਮਾਨਾ ਭੀਤਰੇ ਛੋਡਿਆ ਨਹ ਜਾਇ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥
The Celestial Lord blends into his soul, and he can never leave Him. ||1||Pause||
ਜਰਾ ਮਰਾ ਨਹ ਵਿਆਪਈ ਫਿਰਿ ਦੂਖੁ ਨ ਪਾਇਆ ॥
Old age and death cannot touch him, and he shall not suffer pain again.
ਪੀ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤੁ ਆਘਾਨਿਆ ਗੁਰਿ ਅਮਰੁ ਕਰਾਇਆ ॥੨॥
Drinking in the Ambrosial Nectar, he is satisfied; the Guru makes him immortal. ||2||
Bhai Gurdas is well known for his writing called Varan Bhai Gurdas. I have written about this text before. Today I will talk about a lesser known text, also authored by him, called ‘Kabit Savaiye‘. Below is one of the popular hymns from this book which was composed when Bhai Gurdas was away from the Guru for his language learning:
ਸੁਪਨ ਚਰਿਤ੍ਰ ਚਿਤ੍ਰ ਬਾਨਕ ਬਨੇ ਬਚਿਤ੍ਰ ਪਾਵਨ ਪਵਿਤ੍ਰ ਮਿਤ੍ਰ ਆਜ ਮੇਰੋ ਆਏ ਹੈ ।
Himself holy and capable of making other pious – the friendly True Guru has come into my dream beautifully attired and adored. It is indeed a wonderful marvel for me.
ਪਰਮ ਦਇਆਲ ਲਾਲ ਲੋਚਨ ਬਿਸਾਲ ਮੁਖ ਬਚਨ ਰਸਾਲ ਮਧੁ ਮਧੁਰ ਪੀਆਏ ਹੈ ।
Ever and profoundly benevolent, big eyed – his utterances sweet like honey.
ਸੋਭਿਤ ਸਿਜਾਸਨ ਬਿਲਾਸਨ ਦੈ ਅੰਕਮਾਲ ਪ੍ਰੇਮ ਰਸ ਬਿਸਮ ਹੁਇ ਸਹਜ ਸਮਾਏ ਹੈ ।
He has honoured me by placing me on the throne of His chest. I am lost in the love filled trance of Nam Amrit that merged me into a state of equipoise.
ਚਾਤ੍ਰਿਕ ਸਬਦ ਸੁਨਿ ਅਖੀਆ ਉਘਰਿ ਗਈ ਭਈ ਜਲ ਮੀਨ ਗਤਿ ਬਿਰਹ ਜਗਾਏ ਹੈ ॥੨੦੫॥
Enjoying the bliss of divine dream, I was woken up by the voice of rain-bird. The awe and marvel of love-filled state disappeared reawakening the pangs of separation (like a fish feels out of water).
Gurbani searching on the mobile used to be tough. Symbian and Android phones do not support Unicode with Indic support, which is required to use gurmukhi websites. Opera Mini allowed us to read gurbani, but entering search text is a different matter.
I have developed a web page that allows you to do this, but rather by entering roman letters. For example, enter ‘k’ instead of ‘ਕ’.
Mobile users can use this within Opera Mini (with a configuration setting change as shown here: enter config: as a URL which takes you to advanced settings page. Set Use bitmap fonts for complex scripts to Yes and then Save), for best results. Opera Mini uses cloud computing to render Gurmukhi text, and therefore doesn’t need that support on the mobile itself.
That being said, this tool can be used anywhere you like – on the desktop or any mobile browser. Detailed instructions for using it are on the page itself.
This is envisaged to be updated in future to allow search options powered by various other websites, as and when more powerful search is available. Click here for a short history of Gurbani search.
Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji, sixth Sikh Guru emerging from Gwalior Fort where he was imprisoned by Emperor Jahangir. Along with him, 52 Hindu chieftains were also released, on request from the Guru. Sikhs celebrate Diwali festival as “Bandi Chhor Diwas” because the Guru reached Amritsar back on the Diwali day. For the full story visit http://www.sikhiwiki.org/index.php/Bandi_Chhorh_Divas
Very few people know that this day is also important for Sikhs because of martyrdom of Bhai Mani Singh. He transcribed the final version of Guru Granth Sahib dictated to him by Guru Gobind Singh in 1704.
A few days back India celebrated the festival of Guru purnima – celebration of having a Guru, who destroys our ignorance, and provides us with the Light of Knowledge.
Guru Nanak made four journeys to different places of this world, destroying darkness and evil. On one such journey, Guru Nanak had a long discussion with the Siddhas (learned people). Initially they tried to trick the Guru and disorient him, but that failed. Thereafter they felt that if Guru Nanak becomes their disciple, he could do wonders towards spreading their faith. Guru Nanak replied to the offer saying that he already had a Guru, Shabd Guru – the Diving Knowledge. Finally Siddhas realised Guru Nanak had been born to liberate people in the Kalyug (dark ages), and they asked him what was happening in the cities. This discussion ensued as below, with Guru Nanak describing the state of a world where there is no Guru to guide people:
ਫਿਰਿ ਪੁਛਣਿ ਸਿਧ ਨਾਨਕਾ! ਮਾਤ ਲੋਕ ਵਿਚਿ ਕਿਆ ਵਰਤਾਰਾ?
Siddhas again asked, “O Nanak! How is happening on mother Earth?”
ਸਭ ਸਿਧੀ ਇਹ ਬੁਝਿਆ ਕਲਿ ਤਾਰਣਿ ਨਾਨਕ ਅਵਤਾਰਾ।
By this time all the siddhas understood that Nanak had come to earth to deliver it from the (sins of) kaliyug.
ਬਾਬੇ ਆਖਿਆ: ਨਾਥ ਜੀ! ਸਚੁ ਚੰਦ੍ਰਮਾਂ ਕੂੜੁ ਅੰਧਾਰਾ।
Baba replied, “O respected Nath, Truth has become like the moon – less radiant – and the falsehood has spread darkness all around”
ਕੂੜੁ ਅਮਾਵਸਿ ਵਰਤਿਆ ਹਉ ਭਾਲਣਿ ਚੜ੍ਹਿਆ ਸੰਸਾਰਾ।
The darkness of the moonless night of the falsehood has spread around and I, in order to search for the (truthful) world, have undertaken this journey.
ਪਾਪ ਗਿਰਾਸੀ ਪਿਰਥਮੀ ਧਉਲੁ ਖੜਾ ਧਰਿ ਹੇਠ ਪੁਕਾਰਾ।
The earth is engulfed with sin, and the support of dharma (righteousness) represented by the ox is crying and wailing (for rescue).
ਸਿਧ ਛਪਿ ਬੈਠੇ ਪਰਬਤੀ ਕਉਣੁ ਜਗਤ੍ਰਿ ਕਉ ਪਾਰਿ ਉਤਾਰਾ।
In such circumstances, when even the siddhas, have taken refuge in the mountains, how the world could get redeemed.
ਜੋਗੀ ਗਿਆਨ ਵਿਹੂਣਿਆ ਨਿਸਦਿਨ ਅੰਗਿ ਲਗਾਇਨਿ ਛਾਰਾ।
Yogis also bereft of knowledge and simply applying ashes to their bodies are lying down unconcerned.
ਬਾਝੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਡੁਬਾ ਜਗੁ ਸਾਰਾ ॥੨੯॥
Without Guru the world is getting drowned.
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