Saturday, December 28, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 239 (Shahidee Elder Sahibzades - Story of bravery & sacrifice)

Shahidee Elder Sahibzades - Story of bravery & sacrifice

Every year on December 21, the Sikh community honors the two elder sons of Guru Gobind Singh who on this day in 1705 showed the world how to fight in battle; no matter how young you may be - the duty to Dharam and country comes first; before personal needs, pleasure and comforts.

Chamkaur Sahib
On 20 December 1705, Guru Sahib and the 40 Singhs camped in an open space in Ropar. Bhai Budhi Chand who owned a Haveli (open house) in the town of Chamkaur visited Guru Sahib and offered the services of his home and family at the feet of the Guru. Guru Sahib had once visited the mud-house of Bhai Budhi Chand when returning from Kurekshetra. Guru Sahib and the 40 Singhs took up positions in the Haveli; more properly called a Garhi or mini fortress - a two story mud brick house with a high perimeter wall. The Garhi was situated on a hill, which gave the Guru Sahib a good position from which to rain his arrows on any attackers.

At the commencement of Amritvela (early hours of the day before sunrise) Guru Sahib woke up Bhai Sangat Singh.

"Wake up Sangat Singh, its time for Asa di Var. Let's do Kirtan," Guru said.

What an amazing warrior Guru was! An army of 100,000 are pursuing Guru Sahib and planning to attack the place where they are staying, and Guru Sahib is still blissfully continuing his routine Rehat of Nitnem and Aas di Var Kirtan with all Singhs joining in.

Nawab Wazir Khan, announced outside the fort of Chamkaur, "Gobind Singh! If you and your Sikhs come out now, you will be spared!" Guru Sahib have already had experience of their broken promises and replied to this with a rain of arrows. There was silence now in the cold morning. Clouds filled the sky followed by thunder and lightening. Guru and the Singhs became ready for the battle.

Preparing for Battle
There was a chill in the air and morning had not yet come. 

First one Singh came out and when he was about to become Shaheed (martyr), he roared the Jaikara (slogan) of "Sat Siri Akal!" As soon as the sound of "Sat Siri Akal" echoed throughout the battlefield, the next Singh came out to fight in the battleground. The Nawab was astonished at what these Singhs were made of. He remembered the sayings of the Sikhs that "One Sikh equalled Sava Lakh (125,000)" – the bravery of one Sikhs is like 125000 ordinary men.

Baba Ajit Singh Ji enters the battlefield
Baba Ajit Singh now went before Guru Sahib and said, "Pita ji (dear father), permit me to go and fight on the battleground and grace me with the opportunity to make my life fruitful and worthy in service of the panth."

Guru Gobind Singh hugged his beloved son and gave him a Shastr (weapon). Little beard or moustache had yet not grown on Baba Ajit Singh 's face, showing how young he was. Every father wants to see their child get married, but this was the time of fighting the enemy and defending the path of righteousness. Death was waiting and today Baba Ajit Singh would be marrying death.

The sun was about to rise. Guruji saw that Nawab Wazir Khan wanted to take hold of the fort of Chamkaur in one attempt. The Nawab surrounded the fort with his armies. At this time the Singhs did a benti (request) to Guru Sahib that since there was no means of escaping the siege, he should escape with the Sahibzade(his sons). However Guru Sahib told them that there is no difference between the Singhs and the Sahibzade. "You are all mine! We will be victorious and we will all be free."

Baba Ajit Singh boldly and valiantly came out of fort, accompanied with 5 other Singhs, which included one of the original Panj Piarey, Bhai Mohkam Singh. Guru watched the battle scene from the top of the fort. There was silence on all four sides. As they came into the battleground they roared Jaikarey, which sounded everywhere like the roar of a lion. Today the 5 Singhs felt proud that under the leadership of Baba Ajit Singh , they had been blessed with an opportunity to fight on the side of the truth and the correct path of Guru Nanak. Baba Ajit Singh with the five Sikhs advanced swiftly on to the battlefield displaying weaponry skills, great courage and bravery. The enemy was immediately repulsed back and many of the treacherous and deceitful soldiers in the Mughal and Hill forces were slaughtered. Such was the fury of the Sikh contingent and the dedicated, continuous and precise support from the mud-fort that this small Sikh party of 6 brave bahadurs of the Khalsa force eliminated hundreds of brave enemy soldiers.

The enemy in one section was completely paralysed and disabled by the enormous strength and sudden impact of the Khalsa unit. With protection fire from the fort, which kept the surrounding army units in check and blocked their involvement in the battle on the ground. After killing many hundreds of the enemy, the group began to take casualties. Slowly the impact of the unit began to diminish and after almost an hour, the enemy began surrounding the Sahibzada from all four sides. Baba Ajit Singh called out, "Come nearer if you have courage." The soldiers ran away frightened. Slowly, they began coming back in a larger group as not a single one of them had the courage to individually fight Baba Ajit Singh ji.

The Singhs' weaponry skill on the battlefield reminded the Mughal soldiers of Allah, and they feared for their lives. Baba Ajit Singh even in the middle of the battleground remained in bliss and peace. While fighting, however, one by one the 5 Singhs were overcome and lost their life and became Shaheed (martyrs) of the Guru. One Mughal chief injured Baba 's horse.

As a result, Baba ji fought from the ground with his talwar (sword). With each blow of the sword, he split the enemy into two. Now as the army surrounded the sahibzada, Guru watched with keen interest to see how bravely his son would live his last few minutes of life. When Baba attained Shaheedi, Guru Sahib roared a Jaikara of "Sat Siri Akal" full of emotions and courage - a salutation to the Almighty for the blessing of such a brave son.

Baba Jujhar Singh Ji also ready
The news of Baba Ajit Singh attaining Shaheedi (martyrdom) spread. Hearing the news of his brother, Baba Jujhar Singh now desired to fight in the battlefield. He asked Guru Sahib, "Permit me, dear father, to go where my brother has gone. Don't say that I am too young. I am your son. I am a Singh, a Lion, of yours. I shall prove worthy of you. I shall die fighting, with my face towards the enemy, with the Naam(Gods Name) on my lips and the Guru in my heart."

Guru Gobind Singh embraced him and said, "Go my son and wed the life-giving bride, Death. May the Almighty be with you always"

Guru Sahib gave blessings to Baba Jujhar Singh just like a father gives blessings to the bride on the day of her marriage. Guru added, "I asked my father to give his life for "dharam" (righteousness and justice). Today, what I told my father, I now tell you son."

Bhai Himmat Singh and Bhai Sahib Singh (two of the original Panj Piarey) along with 3 other Singhs accompanied Sahibzada Baba Jujhar Singh . The Mughals were shocked at what they saw. It looked as if Ajit Singh had come back.

"Whoever dies, let him die such a death, that he does not have to die again. (1)" (Guru Granth Sahib Ji, Ang 555)

Dead bodies lay everywhere. Baba Jujhar Singh chose to attack another section of the enemy. He had observed the enemy and chose to attack the section who were showing more aggression against the Sikhs in the mud-fort then the rest of the enemy. Initially, the enemy did not have any courage to formulate an attack against this second unit after the fury of the force displayed by Ajit Singh's unit.

To them this appeared like a repeat of the same disaster that had befallen them an hour or so ago. They had not even had time to recover from the previous shock and now they had a second wave of the same enormously vibrant energy. This time the enemy was driven even further back; many just took flight as they thought that the Sikh numbers must have increased and so many of the enemy disserted the battlefield. This new force of six Khalsas soldiers killed many hundreds of the enemy; many simply ran away.

The enemy were stunned by the heavy force and thrust of this second attack and had little choice but to retreat back. The Khalsa unit created a huge void in the enemy territory and a small circle of about 35 metres within the enemy ground was under the control of the Sikhs. No one had the courage to enter into this circle of control. Anyone who entered this area of command was immediately challenged and quickly extinguished. The Khalsa unit, with their backs to the centre of this circular area attacked the enemy courageously and with vigour at the perimeter of the controlled region.

The Guru watched this development with pride and gratefulness to the Almighty and he knew that the Sikhs had learned the lessons of warfare well and would soon join the many hundreds of Sikh martyrs who had attained the highest honour of Dharam. The Almighty had indeed blessed the Sahibzade and the Sikhs with true bravery and deepest understanding of the Guru's message.

Slowly, due to the huge number of the enemy, they eventually assembled around Baba Jujhar Singh. He was now surrounded and had a Neja (spear) in his hand. Wherever the Neja hit, the enemy was destroyed. He also used a Khanda (double-sword), with which he killed the enemy as a farmer mows down his crop. Guru saw that Jujhar Singh was being surrounded and the opportunity to kill the Mughal soldiers was decreasing.

So Guru Sahib fired volleys of arrows in the area around the Sahibzada giving 'protection fire' to the Sikh soldiers. The person providing protection fire must be very skilful and precise because if the target is missed, people on the same side can be killed giving rise to 'casualty from friendly fire'. Guru sahib continued to give protection cover with arrows for almost 30 minutes, but none of the 5 Singhs or Baba were hit or injured by the arrows. Baba and the 5 Singhs demonstrated the Sikh concept of one equalling the bravery and courage of "Sava Lakh" (125,000) humans.

Baba Jujhar Singh eventually was able to break the ring of the Mughal army soldiers surrounding him. However, due to the huge number of enemy soldiers, Baba eventually attained Shaheedi but died a hero's death in the fight against tyranny and falsehood.

"That person alone is known as a spiritual warrior, who fights in defence of religion. They may be cut apart, piece by piece, but they never leave the field of battle. 22." (Guru Granth Sahib Ji, Ang 1105)

Monday, December 16, 2013

Fwd: Tum karo dia mera saie

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sikhs Helping Sikhs <>
Date: 16 December 2013 06:19
Subject: Tum karo dia mera saie

Report By Dr Avtar Singh    I have reviewed Bhai Gurbaksh Singh's latest blood test reports of 12 hours ago. Bhai Sahib allowed the blood test to be done at the sangat's request. His Potassium level has dropped to 3.1. The level was 3.3 less than 48 hours ago. Any level less than 3.5 is abnormal. Our body will use all the stored amounts of Potassium in us before the level starts falling below 3.5. Bhai Sahib's Creatinine level has improved . This shows that he is drinking a lot of water . BUT he is not taking any fruits or vegetables or Dal for the last 30 days and that is from where Potassium is obtained. Potassium level less than 3.0 is termed Severe Hypokalemia ( The risks to body start showing their effects and can be life threatening ). The risks are of Arrythmia ( Irregular heart beat with heart going into dangerous rhythm resulting in sudden death even ). At level less than 2.5, Bhai Sahib's respiratory  






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Thursday, December 12, 2013

Sakhi Series : 238 ( Giani Kartar Singh ji Khalsa Bhindranwale)


Sri Guru Tegh Bahadurs Jee's 300th Shaheedi day was celebrated by Baba Jee by getting organisations, Jathebandhis, Colleges participating in Sikhi preaching. In relation to this, during the government's declared emergency period, 37 great processions were carried out in various locations. The whole Sikh world was awakened by these great events. He would stand for 15 hours at a time doing Parchar. A 100km long procession would go past 60-70 villages and he would do parchar for 10-15 minutes at each village. Each village's Sangat was made to sing the following slogan: "May my head be sacrificed, but not my Sikhi."
He instructed that the 2 ministers should be informed that the procession is being performed in memory and honor of the protector of the Hindus - 'Hind dee Chadar'. The ministers should remove their shoes and stand with both hands folded and clear the road for the procession to pass. 

In Delhi on 7 December 1975 AD - to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the Shaheedi of Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Jee, in the Ram Lila ground, a procession of 2.2 million people arrived and P.M. Indira Gandhi came onto the stage. In the presence of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Jee, all those on the stage arose to welcome and respect her, but it was only Baba Kartar Singh Jee who remained seated. On the stage Baba Jee spoke passionately about this anti-Sikh act. Many leaders who spoke on the stage said that P.M. Indira Gandhi had built an excellent relationship with Punjab, after which she said, "..the Delhi government got Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur martyred and today the Delhi government prostrates to Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Jee. The same Delhi government who gave reports against the Sikhs, today respects and reveres Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Jee."

Baba Jee's time to speak was after P.M. Indira Gandhi, he stated :
'First Rajput Kings used to give their daughters to get rewards. Today Sikhs are disgracing themselves if they do the same. For this reason no Sikh is to marry their daughter to a Mona or a patit and the rehatnama says:

ਕੰਨਿਆ ਦੇਵੈ ਸਿਖ ਕੋ ਲੇਵੈ ਨਹਿ ਕਿਛੁ ਦਾਮ । ਸੋਈ ਮੇਰਾ ਸਿਖ ਹੈ ਪਹੁਚੇ ਗੁਰ ਕੇ ਧਾਮ ।
A Sikh that marries his daughter to a Sikh and does not take any money/dowry, he is a true Sikh of mine and will reach my abode in Sachkand. (Bhai Sahib Singh Rehatnama, p.160)

The second point that he clarified was that 'We want to ask Indira Gandhi who achieved the rule of the Delhi government? If you have come here to prostrate to Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur you have done no great act. If Guru Jee had not become martyred, the master of this throne would have been a Muslim and everywhere all would be greeted with Salema Lekham. You yourself would have been under a Burka.
The number of hairs that are on the body of the P.M., even if she was to cut her head off that many times and placed at the feet of Guru Jee, she still would not be able to remove the debt owed to Sri Guru Tegh Bahaur Jee. Regardless of how powerful the P.M. - no one is more powerful than our Guru. She should prostrate to our loved one, the light of the 10 Kings - Sri Guru Granth Sahib Jee, not require that we get up and pay respect to her.' 

Following this, Jakaras were heard from all areas of the arena. Due to the truth being spoken by Baba Kartar Singh Jee, this led to disputes being raised by P.M. Indira Gandhi with the Damdami Taksal. If anyone disrespected Sri Guru Granth Sahib Jee he never tolerated it. Thus he spoke up against the Nakali Nirankaris as well and led programs to tackle their onslaught on Sikhi.

Friday, December 06, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 237 (Respect of Guru Granth Sahib ji Maharaj)

Giani Kartar Singh Jee Khalsa Bindranwale

Baba Kartar Singh Jee served as the Jathedar of Damdami Taksal for 8 years and did much Gurmat Parchar in this time

Giani Kartar Singh Jee Khalsa Bindranwale was once asked to lay the foundation of Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur charitable hospital in Ludhiana. When he arrived there, about 15-20 men got up in the Divan to welcome him. Baba Jee walked out and left. 

The organisers went and asked the reason for this exit and he replied that 'in the presence of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Jee no one should stand to welcome or respect another, as this degrades the respect of the Guru.'  

After the organisers asked for forgiveness, he sent them all back into the Divan and Baba Jee went in by himself after all of them. He explained to them that it doesn't matter how famous the leader or great a Gursikh is - no one is greater than the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Jee Maharaj.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Sakhi Series : 236 ( Veeran Malhar)

Guru Nanak Sahib ji & Veeran Malhar
(Source : Guru Nanak Chamatkar by ​ Bhai Vir Singh)

On one of Guru Nanak Dev ji's travels...
(Bhai Saado and Sheehan are said to have acompanied Guru Nanak Dev ji in one of Guru jis travels)
Mardana: O Sheehan, see, the Guru has opened his Lord's-love-immersed eyes and his forehead is showering benevolence. It  appears he is going to bless someone. 

Sheehan: It does appear like that. He travels to distant places as if he is searching someone. 

Mardana: Yes, he is benevolent in many ways. Sometimes he showers his blessings on a large gathering but sometimes he blesses those who are already on the religious path. Sometimes he blesses some top saints who consider themselves as having reached the Lord but are actually stuck in some mistaken belief. He clears their mistaken beliefs and puts them on the right path.

Sometimes he blesses those who are occupying religious seats but are in pride and nurture hatred in their mind for other religions. (Laughingly) the true Guru is miraculous. Sometimes he blesses the robbers, criminals and sinners and puts them on the true path of love of the Lord. 

One is the Lord whose will one cannot know and one is the Guru. We cannot guess what miracle he is going to do today. See, he is in meditation since early morning. Now, he has opened his eyes. Benevolence is showering from his face.

Meanwhile the Guru said: Come. Let us move. Get ready. 
Mardana: Beloved Guru, where do we go?
Guru: Let us move. We are already in travel. The town is near. One person is in pursuit but is stuck in mistaken belief. It is like a barrier against a river. When the barrier is removed t;he river flows uninterrupted. Similarly, if his mistaken belief is removed, he will move forward with vigor.

On listening to the Guru's wish they moved ahead. They reached the town. They asked someone: Where does Veeran Malhar live? 

The person replied: A little further on this very street on the left side. They reached there and entered the hrarden. There, Veeran Malhar was sitting busy in some work. He saw them, stood up and with folded hands said: Greetings to you.
Guru: God bless you. 

Then hurriedly he brought a bed. Spread a nice white sheet on it and said: Welcome, please sit down.
The Guru sat on the bed and on the ground in front, on a mat, sat Veeran Malhar and the Guru's companions. 

Guru: Veeran Malhar, say, how are your ascetic practices going on? Veeran Malhar: I am a poor farmer. What do I know about the Lord? Mardana: Speak frankly and take some good gainful advice. 

Veeran Malhar (heaving a sigh softly): What is the name of the Godly soul?
Mardana: Nanak from the Lord. 
Veeran Malhar (Heaving a long sigh of relief: I am fortunate that a Godly soul has himself come and given a glimpse. Thanks, 0 Lord. Lord is great and benevolent.

He bowed to the Guru again and said: 0 Nanak! I have heard you consider Muslims and Hindus as equal. I am in a fix. When I am at home, I remember the one Lord. When I go to the mosque, there, they tell Hindus are not allowed in the Lord's palace. Only Muslims are allowed and there is one friend Mohammed at His gate. Nobody else can go there. There is no Ram or Krishna. Even if they are, they are not allowed there. Then I ponder if Hindu prophets are not allowed there, then why the Lord created them. 

The Muslim priests say that since they are non-Muslim, they will burn in hell. Then my mind questions: Why does Lord create something to burn in hell? Does he feel happy to see the hell burning? If I talk to a pandit, he says, Muslims are untouchable. They cannot get salvation. Then they talk against the prophet who has to help in getting salvation.

Then I pray to God: 0 Lord, tell me which ship should I go on, Muslim  ship or Hindu ship? Which ship will sail and which will drown? Which ship will take me across? My heart is pierced with this thorn and I have no peace of mind. 

I have heard you have meditated for ages and have got a robe of honour from the Lord. You tell who is allowed and who is not allowed in the Lord's palace? For the sake of the Lord, you tell truly. 

Guru: O dear, the truth is that as you sow, so shall you reap? Peace of mind is in contentment that whatever the Lord does is good. But salvation is in Name. Without Name everybody is in the bond of ego. 

Veeran Malhar: But you are the Lord's beloved. You are immersed in His love. You take out the thorn from my heart that the Muslim priests have pierced and Hindu priests have not pulled it out. You pull it out. You tell who is allowed in the Lord's palace? 

Guru: Both, Muslims and Hindus agree that one Lord has created this world. So, Lord is the creator. His created beings are His children. Who is lovable and who is not? You only tell, amongst your own children, who is lovable and who is not?
Veeran Malhar: All children are lovable but the one who has goodness in him is more lovable. 

Guru: We cannot see the Lord but the important thing we know that he is the creator and father and for him all are equal as we feel our sons are. Who is more loveable, who is pious. So, now you can judge who is more loveable.  It is the one who has goodness. Veeran Malhar: Yes, you have said right. Now you tell me about the heavens also. Which prophet is  loveable, whether it is Mohammed or Ram or Krishna? 

Guru: The Lord, who is present here, there, everywhere, in His court, He is the one and only one Lord. Rest, are all standing at his door, they are in millions. Millions of Ram, millions of Krishna, millions of Mohammed, millions of saints and millions others, they cannot be counted. They have millions of dresses, millions of paths, millions of Hindu priests and millions of Muslim priests. 0 brother, but those who have treaded on the true path of 'recitation of the Lord's Name with love' have got salvation. If you tread on this path you will get salvation, otherwise not. From the above-mentioned millions those who have treaded on this true path have got salvation, others have not. So, there are millions in ascetic practices but only those who have treaded on this true path have got salvation. Without the Lord's name and without the sensation of the Lord in the mind and body all are without the love of the Lord. 

Now, if we talk of the Lord, then he is One and only One. There was no second, there is no second and there will be no second. He is the only one. He is the one Lord of all prophets, saints and sadhus. But if you want to find His limit as you measure your land, then that will be folly. The creation cannot understand the Creator. The finite cannot estimate the Infinite. He is limitless and indescribable in words.

We have to remain in devotion. We have to love Him. Being near Him gives comfort. We should always remain in His presence. That is the salvation. The rest who do not tread on the spiritual path, who do not recite His Name, they are in sentimental love. They are enticed in the short-lived worldly pleasures. They do not understand the ecstasy of the soul. Their education, their knowledge, their vocation are all in ego. The educated, the uneducated, the believers in religion, the atheists, all are in envy. They increase the unhappiness and suffering of mankind. What is the use of that education that increases the suffering of mankind and does not allay its suffering. 

Further, if you ask about the Lord's door and wish to listen to happiness hriving words, then listen. 
Then Mardana played the rebeck and sang a divine song. 

O Lord, where is your door, where is your palace where you sit and hrive your love to everyone, where the divine songs are sung, where the angels sing your praises, where the breeze, fire and water sing your praises, where the Shiva, Brahma and Indira sing your praises? 0 Lord, you are great, your Name is always true. 0 Lord, you were, you are and you always will be. 0 Lord, you are the king of kings, your command is supreme. 

The enthralling divine song depicting love of the Lord elevated Veeran Malhar's mind and he went into deep meditation. He got the sensation of the Lord in his mind and body. He was filled with ecstasy. Even, after the divine song finished he kept sitting in meditation for a long time. 

When his mind came out of the trance, then his mind said: This is the true Guru who has himself come to my house. It is he who has got this treasure of Name that he is showering. He is the image of the Lord. He has come from the Lord. He sees the Lord here, there, everywhere. One can see the Lord in his eyes and feel the Lord in his words. He is prophet of the prophets. 

He opened his eyes and looked towards the radiant face of the Guru. He could not bear the dazzle and falling at his feet said: 0 Nanak, you are the Lord's image. You bless me. You have taken out the thorn from my heart. Now, you apply the cream of hrrace on my heart. Be hrracious. I am a beggar at your door. You bless me. 

Guru: O dear Veeran Malhar: Listen, who reaches the Lord's door? A saint who has controlled his five senses and reined them. One who keeps company of holy people, one who has tread on the footsteps of a saint and has become a saint, he is welcome at the Lord's door. He is welcome and respected here. He is welcome and respected at the Lord's door. He is respected at the Lord's palace. But how does one become a saint? That is by remembering the Lord incessantly, by remembrance of His Name. How do you remember His Name? That is by recitation of His Name. How do you get into recitation of Narne? By joining the holy conh'Tegation. The Guru gives the Name. 
This is the true path and all else is mistaken belief. 

Veeran Malhar: Then 0 benevolent Guru, you put me on that true path, so that by treading on it, I will learn to become a saint. 

Then the Guru was gracious. He put Veeran Malhar on the true path of recitation of the Lord's name with love. 

Veeran Malhar started treading on the path of Name. He remained steadfast in recitation of Name. 

The Guru blessed a seeker of the Lord who was stuck in the middle because of misguidance from the ego-minded clerhry. 
O Great Guru Nanak !! 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 235 (British Soldier Meets Guru Gobind Singh Ji and How He Became a Sikh)

British Soldier Meets Guru Gobind Singh Ji and How He Became a Sikh

In 1964, when some of the weapons of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji were brought back from England, an Englishman, in complete Sikh form, accompanied them. Out of curiousity, someone asked the Englishman what inspired him to adopt the Sikh form. Was it due to respect for the weapons or was there some other reason? The explanation given by him at Gurdwara Bangla Sahib in Delhi is something that should be of interest to all readers.

"My name was A. David. I happened to be commanding a Sikh Regiment during World War II. My Regiment suffered very heavy losses fighting the Germans. Most of the Sikh jawaans (soldiers) of my Battalion were killed. Only a few survived and we were all surrounded by the Germans. As there were very remote chances of our survival, I called the Subedaar major of the Battalion and informed him about our precarious situation. Death was facing us and there was no chance of survival. I suggested to him that the jawans should individually attempt to escape from the enemy encirclement and save their lives.

The Subedaar Major replied, "We cannot bring ignominy to the Sikh Regiment by running away from the battlefield." However, he suggested that they should perform an Akhand-Paath ceremony and take action as per the Divine Hukam (Holy Command). Accordingly, necessary security arrangements were made and the Akhand-Paath ceremony was completed without interruption. After the supplicatory prayer (Ardaas), the Divine Hukam from the Holy Scripture was explained to me by the Subedaar Major and the religious teacher (Granthi).

The Guru's instruction as per the Divine Hukam was that we should not abandon the battlefield; victory will be ours. Then I conveyed to them the miracle that I had witnessed during the supplicatory prayer. While standing with my eyes closed during the Ardaas, a fully armed Sikh on horseback with a unique grandeur appeared in front of me and ordered "Follow me." I pointed out the direction in which the fully armed Sikh went after giving the order and asked them about the identity of the warrior. The Subedaar Major said that from the description I had given, he seemed to be none other than Sri Guru Gobind Singh himself!

So, we got ready and launched an attack in the direction pointed out by the Guru. After a short while, we were able to break through the German encirclement and save ourselves. We then got in touch with the Brigade Commander on wireless and requested for additional help.

After the war, I reflected upon the incident and the divine personality who had saved our lives from the impregnable enemy encirclement in a desperate situation by ordering me to follow him. I made up my mind to follow him for the rest of my life. I resigned from the Army and along with my daughter, embraced Sikh Dharam with the initiation ceremony of the Khalsa. Now my name is Devinder Singh and my daughter's name is Surjit Kaur. This is due to the blessings of Guru Gobind Singh that he made us his disciples."

Saturday, November 09, 2013

Fwd: DOWNLOAD Sakhi Series Volumne2 (pdf)

Waheguru ji ka khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh

The stories of one's ancestors make the children good children. They accept what is pleasing to the Will of the True Guru, and act accordingly. 
(Guru Granth Sahib ji 951) 

Now you can DOWNLOAD Sakhi Series Part 2  containing Sakhis 101 - 225  in PDF format

Waheguru ji ka khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh

Monday, November 04, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 234 (​Instant charity brings great blessing and joy)

( Source : book - Surat Shabad Marg by Sant Waryam.Singh Ji Ratwara Sahib Wale ) 

Once Seventh Guru Sahib - Guru Har Rai ji was explaining the concept of Charity. A Sikh stood up and said, "O Master, the rich can give donations; how can the poor give donations? Kindly enlighten us on this issue also because we are poor, we are penniless, we have nothing; so how should we enjoy its fruit?" Guru Sahib said, "Dear devotees, this is not the case. A rich person has a lot of wealth, while the poor man has nothing to eat even. Giving charity is equal in the eyes of God. One having reaped a profit of one lakh rupees donates a thousand rupees. But another has earned no profit, but he gives one rupee as donation. The latter's one rupee donation is greater than the thousand rupees donated by the former." He submitted —
"O Master, kindly explain to us; we very much wish to give donation but we haven't anything at all."

"How many loaves do you eat?"


Guru Sahib said, "Eat three loaves, and put the flour of one loaf in a separate vessel. When it becomes a seer (900 gms), put it in the gurdwara's common kitchen, where food is cooked, where the flour or foodgrains are not sold, and where the hungry and needy are fed." Then another Sikh stood up and said, "O Master, I have appetite for four loaves, but I get only two. Can there be some way out for me too?" In the meanwhile, a lady also got up and said, 'O Master, we are extremely poor, and only half of us get food, while half of us remain without food." Guru Sahib said, "O woman, what you should do is to take a pinch of flour and collect it in a vessel and when the vessel becomes full, donate it to the Guru's 'langar' (community kitchen). There it will get used; it will be instant charity — '
Instant charity brings great blessing and joy." They said, "O Master, does even such a little charity bear fruit?" Guru Sahib said, "Let me narrate to you an incident of Kiratpur itself.

Here lived a very poor Gursikh. He used to make his both ends meet by gathering grains from the field - furrows and lived under a broken shed. A he-sparrow and she-sparrow under some curse happened to fall into this existence, but they were gifted with knowledge. They used to eat a few grains from the ones collected by this Gursikh. Both thought of doing something to help him out of his extreme poverty — This fool does not know that the cure for poverty lies in giving charity or donation. If a poor man starts giving charity, his poverty is removed. This man does not know this truth. Well, we will pick up two grains each from his collection and drop them in the 'langar' (kitchen) of Seventh Guru Sahib. They started doing this regularly. As the grains fell into the Guru's kitchen, his earnings started increasing. Finally, he became rich, built a new house. He forgot that it was God who had blessed him with all these gifts. He thought that he had achieved everything through his ability and intelligence and took to drinking and eating nonvegetarian food. He took to wrong and evil ways. He became atheistic. Earlier he was poor, and suffered afflictions. In adversity, man remembers God, and when he acquires wealth, he indulges in sensual pleasures and becomes oblivious of God. 

Only very few persons continue to remember God even on becoming rich and achieving prominence. Most of the people forget God. Rare are the persons, who retain poise and balance; most of the people go astray. None remembers God; people remember God in affliction and poverty. So they (he-sparrow and she-sparrow) thought — 

"We have done a wrong thing; we have made him take to a sinful life."
"Therefore, he should be restored to the same old condition."
"How should this be done?"
"The earnings in which comes to fall a grain from the Guru's abode causes poverty. These earnings are destroyed or go waste."
'Desire for the offerings of Guru's abode is like sugarcoated poison.'

"Just as eating poison capsules coated with sugar are harmful, so is eating the offerings of a place of worship." ( Bhai Gurdas Ji Var 35/12)

Man eats the gurdwara offerings out of greed. So the birds started throwing two grains from the Guru's 'langar' (kitchen) into the house of this man. Again, he became very poor. After having seen good days, it is very difficult to bear hardship. He wept and fretted — 'O Master, I was enjoying a good life. Now whatever work I undertake, it causes loss — gold turns into clay. Show mercy on me." 

Guru Sahib said, "Dear devotee, your prosperity was the fruit of charity. Four grains from your earnings used to fall into the gurdwara 'langar' (kitchen). Then you became evil-minded and addicted to sensual pleasures. And now four grains from the Guru's 'langar' (kitchen) fall into your home. So your earnings have become rotten. Go and give something in charity; do some service in the Guru's abode.  So, Guru Sahib said, in this way, he who gives just two grains in charity also attains to God. 

Friday, November 01, 2013

Sakhi Series - Part 2 as PDF

Waheguru ji ka khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh

The stories of one's ancestors make the children good children. They accept what is pleasing to the Will of the True Guru, and act accordingly. 
(Guru Granth Sahib ji 951) 

Now you can DOWNLOAD Sakhi Series Part 2  containing Sakhis 101 - 225  in PDF format


Friday, October 25, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 233 (The world has a double face)

Bhagat Namadev Ji - Praise and Slander

Bhagat (Saint) Namdev Ji had a renunciatory nature, an attitude of non-attachment with the world. So he decided to give good and pure education to children. He decided to impart spiritual education to children because it is the best education. Therefore, at a young age, children were sent to him for receiving education.


A seth (rich man) decided to send his son to him for education, thinking that if the child remained with the holy men in the early years, he would be saved from falling a prey to sinful sensual pleasures. He (the rich man) thought that on growing up, the child would no doubt become a business man like him, but it would be good for him to gain spiritual knowledge and understanding in the company of the holy man. So he took the child to Saint Namdev but to show off the family's superior status and wealth, his wife made the child put on neckalce, bracelets and other ornaments.


He said to the saint, "Sir, take charge of the child. Accept him in your service and give him some knowledge and understanding." Saint Namedev Ji said, "Rich man, don't worry. Leave him here. There are other children also. Seeing them, he too will be influenced."


In the evening, when Saint Namdev Ji told the children to go home, he observed and thought, "The richman's son is rather small, but he is wearing so many ornaments. If some thief happens to kidnap him for the ornaments, he will strangulate him. The rich man does not seem to appreciate this. But I don't have any arrangements to send an escort with him." So he thought it better to remove his ornaments. He removed the ornaments and kept them tied in a small bundle and the child went home.


When he reached home, and his mother saw his ornaments missing, she asked him, "Where are your ornaments?" He said that the saint had removed them. At this she observed, "Such an evil saint? Now he won't return the ornaments." She was of a hasty and impatient nature. If she were thoughtful, she would have said, "There must be something behind the saint's action, because holy men are not of this type." But she immediately jumped to the conclusion that since the saint had removed the ornaments, he would not return them. She thought that the saint's nature was like hers, because we often try to judge others with our own spectacles.  So, her nature was such that she got agitated at once when she found the ornaments missing. She did not wait, and went to her neighbour, and said —


"Look sister! People talk so much about Namdev; they call him a saint, a devotee of God : but he is a cheat, nothing else."


"What has happened to you?"


"Nothing has happened. But I have seen the reality. I sent my child decked with ornaments. Look here, he has left not a single ornament on the child. He has removed even the ring from his (child's) little finger."


"Don't worry. Inquire about it tomorrow in the morning."


 "Now he is not going to return. One, who has removed the oranaments, will not return them now. He will say that somebody must have removed them on the way."


The neighbouring woman too was of an impatient and rash nature. She talked about it to another neighbour. So in this manner, the news travelled everywhere in the town by the time it was evening.


In the meantime, the rich man returned home. She said to him —


"What good — you have sent the child to Namdev for getting education! He has removed all his ornaments."


"It is not possible. Namdev Ji is a saint, a holy man."


"You may continue considering him a holy man, but I am telling you what I have seen with my own eyes."


"Then why are you feeling impatient?


We shall talk about it in the morning." "No; he is not going to return them? You are a fool, a simpleton."


Next day, the richman went to Namdev Ji. After greeting him, he sat down — the child was with him. Namdev Ji observed, "Richman, don't send the child wearing ornaments. You should know that money and ornaments spell danger to the child's life. They are enemies of his life. Somebody may kidnap him and strangulate him. Here is the bundle containing ornaments." The rich man was very much pleased, but he also felt sad that his wife had defamed the holy man all over the town. The news will ultimately reach the holy man too and he will certainly take it ill. Hurriedly, he came home and said to his wife.


"You have done a very wrong thing. He has, in fact, saved the child's life by removing his ornaments."


Instantly, thinking that her neighbour might not have conveyed her observations (about the holy man) to others, she went to her and said, "He (Saint Namdev) is a very noble person. He has, in fact, saved the life of my son. I needlessly got angry and acted in a hurry."


The other woman went to her neighbour and conveyed this thing. Soon it came to be talked all over the town — Namdev Ji is a very good and noble person. He had removed the ornaments of the rich man's son in order to save his life from possible kidnappers and killers.


Next day, an attendant or devotee of Namdev Ji said to him — "O holy man! I am surprised; the world has a double face." "What is the matter?" "Day before yesterday, you were badly caluminated. There was not a single person who did not speak ill of you. We felt very much pained and unhappy. But today, you are being praised everywhere." "Why?" "You might have removed a child's ornaments lest they should be stolen by thieves. Everywhere people said that the holy man had removed all the ornaments of a child." If there is anything against holy men, it spreads in a moment like wildfire; it seems as if the people are always on the look out for such an opportunity. Even if it is a minor thing, you do not need any advertisement to propagate it. It spreads far and wide. The news or rumour spreads without feet or wings and without having been witnessed. A good thing does not go round that fast.


So he said, "Today, you are being praised. Those who had slandered you are today saying with their own tongue – Namdev Ji is a very noble person and he had removed the child's ornaments for his own safety."


Namdev Ji was sitting in a carefree mood. Before him was lying ash. He took it in his two hands. One handful he threw on one side saying — let it fall on the heads of slanderers; the other, he threw on the other side saying — let it fall on the heads of those who are praising me. His attendant said — But they are showering praises on you? The holy man said,


"None in the world praises truly. If they were to praise, why did they slander? This whole world is double-faced."


Therefore, Guru Sahib says, "Neither be delighted at praise, nor be annoyed at calumny(slander/defamation). Rather, be delighted at calumny, and not at praise, because, the Guru's edict is —


'He who caluminates me is my friend'.  (Guru Granth Sahib. 339)


He who speaks ill of us is our wellwisher, but not the one who praises us. He who showers praises on us spoils us or harms us, and makes us self-conceited or egoistic. Then, if someone doesn't show full respect and honour, we become annoyed. So Guru Sahib says :


'Who indifferently receives praise and calumny, And seeks alone the state sublime of transcendence, Saith Nanak, servant of God: Hard is this way of life — Only by the holy Preceptor's guidance may its secret be mastered.'


'He, who is above praise and calumny, and to whom gold and iron are alike.

Says Nanak, hearken thou, O man, deem thou him to be emancipated'

(Guru Granth Sahib. 1426)


'He, who is free from joy and sorrow, call him, thou, a true Yogi.'  (Guru Granth Sahib. 685)

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 232 ( Bhagat kabir ji and Mata Loi )

​Greatness of Waheguru ji's Name.

One day, Bhagat Kabir ji had  gone out of home .  A sufferer - some Raja (king or ruler), whose entire body was afflicted with leprosy and was giving out foul smell, came to his house. The Raja stood at his door and begged alms, and what alms did he beg? That which the saints have and can bestow. He said: "I want to see Kabir Sahib." Kabir Sahib's wife Loi came out and said: "He is out of home." The Raja said: "I am in great pain. I have come from afar. I am afflicted with leprosy. I cannot bear this pain. Kindly tell me where I can find Kabir Sahib." Kabir Sahib's wife said: "He is at a far off place. But since you are suffering, let me give you some medicine."
He said: "Mother, I have already tried various cures and medicines. If I were to be cured with medicines, I would not have come to this door. Medicines have failed to cure me. No medicine is proving to be  efficacious." She said: "I shall give you the medicine which saints or holy men have."
Just as with 'amritdhara' (a herbal medicine) 32 ailments can be cured, similarly, with the saints and holy men, there is only one medicine for all ailments and that is God's Name

So mother Loi said, "O king, one should have faith in one's heart. Then the medicine proves to be 100 percent effective. But the vessel, the capsule for the medicine should be of faith, because this medicine is going to be absorbed in your heart, and the moment it is absorbed, you will be cured."

'Pain comes not near him, within whose mind the Transcendent Lord abides.
He is affected not by hunger and thirst and Death's minister comes not near him.' Ang 1102

'The Name Divine is the sovereign remedy for all ills.' Ang 274

When somebody comes for the alleviation of his sufferings to holy men, many of them do not pay any attention and tell him , "Suffer the consequences of your deeds, brother.What for have you come to us? Meditate on God's Name, otherwise you will have to suffer the consequences of your deeds in the next birth." BUT Guru Nanak Sahib cured even lepers by bestowing the panacea of God's Name and put them on the right path for the future.

The Raja (king) said, "I certainly have faith." At this Mother Loi said, "Then the only medicine is God's Name." In this context, the Guru's edict is: 

'I have abandoned all other efforts and have taken the medicine of the Name alone.
The fever, sin and all the evils have been eradicated and my soul has been rendered cool' Ang 817

Mother Loi said: "Now I shall give you the medicine.  Sit there. "She herself also sat there , concentrating her mind, she was fully inspired. The glow in her eyes was difficult to bear. 

She said: "Utter 'Raam'". She made the king utter theword 'Raam'. As soon as he uttered 'Raam', he felt a tingling sensation all over his body. She again made  him utter the word 'Raam'. His pain and suffering was gone. She made him utter the word 'Raam' for the third time. Then she said to him: "Go now, bathe yourself and continue reciting the word 'Raam', and sent him away. The king took bath. He was delighted and danced joyfully. His close companions, who were quite well-informed, said to him: "How did you get well?" He replied: "The  holy man gave  me medicine." They asked: "Do holy men have some panacea?" The king said, "It is not a panacea; it has another name."

"The saint has given me the medicine of God's Name." Ang 101 

Disease does not touch or infest him even in a dream. 'O brother, the medicine of Name is present in every heart.' Ang 259 

Guru Sahib says that when man partakes of the medicine of God's Name, all his pains and sufferings are annulled. 

So the Raja (king) and all others kept discussing that the holy personage gave the medicine, Mother Loi gave the medicine of Name - made him utter 'Raam' (omnipresenct God) only thrice, and cured him completely.

When Kabir Sahib was returning after some days, on the way, at one place he heard some one saying: 'Blessed be Kabir, blessed be Kabir' and 'blessed be Mother Loi, blessed be Mother Loi.' He was surprised and when he met some acquaintance, who knew things. Kabir Sahib said to him, "What is this talk about Mother Loi? Has she done something? Has she performed some miracle?" He replied: "Sir, a leper had come. He was the king of such and such place. He was made to utter the word
'Rama'   (God)  only  thrice and was  cured of  his affliction." Kabir Ji became silent; a wrinkle appeared on his brow; he remarked: "What! God's Name! Thrice? She has been in the company of the holy for so long, and still she hasn't realized that - 'The Master's Name is invaluable. None knows its worth.' (Ang 81) Has she given it away so cheap?" 

When he returned home, he did not talk with his wife. Mother Loi came forward and greeted him. But he did not respond and went past her. She came again and tried to take his apron, 'chippi' (oval shaped begging bowl), stick etc, but he placed all these things himself, and sat with this back towards
her. She went on the other side, but he again turned his back. This was the first time that Kabir Sahib behaved as such with her. Never before had he become angry with her, although she said many things to him. He never bothered about what others said - neither mother, nor father, nor his wife, nor the people. If somebody pointed this out, he used to say:-

'I am bad, and bad in mind as well. I have no partnership with anyone.
I am dishonoured.. I have lost my honour. Let no one follow in my footsteps.' Ang 324 

Saying these words, he would go away, but he never got annoyed with anyone. That day he had got angry for the first time. A holy man's anger is not good; nobody knows the havoc it may cause. A holy man's anger is something fearful. So tears started flowing from Mother Loi's eyes. She said: "My master, you may kill me or destroy me. Even if you saw me into two, I won't feel the slightes pain,  but  your  back  towards me, that is, your indifference, I cannot bear." So she prayed:

What has happened? Has some tale-bearer come between us? You are my husband and I am your wife. Tell me, what is the matter? "The Guruwards' anger is short- lived like a line on water and not permanent like a line on stone. Anger does come but it passes off soon. On this particular occasion, Kabir Sahib was a little annoyed because his wife had violated a basic principle. He said to her: 'Do 
you wish to know the cause of my anger? Then listen: You have kept the company of holy men so much; you  have heard so much about the greatness and glory of the Name from them, and still you did not have faith in their utterances and thought that God's Name is so cheap. Even if you had made the afflicted one utter the word 'Raam' (God) just once, he would have been cured.

Such a precious commodity, and yet it was spent so cheap? At that time, with folded hands, she submitted: "Please listen to my plea. I did not spend the Name cheap. First time, I made him utter the word 'Raam' (God), so that all his sins, which afflicted him with leprosy, might be annulled. By doing so,I cut the roots of his affliction. Second time, I made him utter 'Raam' (God), so that he might be rid of his pain because he was in great agony. Then I was concerned lest after getting well, he should again get absorbed in sins. So, to make his mind inclined towards the 'Name', I made him utter 'Raam' (God) for the third time and gave him the 'Gur-mantar' (Guru's holy word, or mystic formula) of God's Name." Kabir Sahib was happy and satisfied with the explanation given by Loi.

Monday, October 07, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 231 ( The Battle of Muktsar )

The Battle of Muktsar

"Count as heroes only those who die for upholding the Truth. 
They never show their back to the enemy but fight to the last."
   (Guru Granth Sahib)

Nawab Wazir Khan, the viceroy of Sirhind, became aware of the Guru Gobind ji's escape only after the latter had reached Dina. Wazir Khan also learned about Guru ji's warm welcome and stay with Lakhmir and Shamir, the Chaudhries (Land Owners) of Dina. He, therefore, sent a stern warning to the Chaudhries telling them to hand over the rebel Guru. And if they failed to do so they would be severely dealt with.

Chaudhri Lakhmir did not care about Wazir Khan's warning and replied that it was their moral duty to help the great Guru in his just cause.

Wazir Khan was greatly angered at the letter from Chaudhri Lakhmir. He immediately started mobilising his forces. This news spread through the whole country and reached Guruji. As the news spread, Guru ji's followers thronged to his court. Guruji himself made an extensive tour of the villages in the Malwa and organised his Sikhs in a few days. People in large numbers received the baptism of the double-edged sword (Khande Baate di pahul) and got ready to resist Wazir Khan's forces.

Guruji did not consider Dina a suitable place for battle. He, therefore, moved on to Kot Kapura. It was decided that the mound of Khidrana was a very suitable place to defeat the invading armies. The Khidrana lake was the only source of water throughout the wild country. The mound was also surrounded by thorny bushes for mites. The Guru planned the defence in such a way that the Imperial forces should be checked at a distance so that they should not have access to the lake.

The Sikhs who deserted Guruji at Anandpur were put to shame by their womenfolk when they reached their homes. One brave lady Mai Bhago (Mata Bhag Kaur) gathered the forty Singhs who had deserted Guruji at Anandpur Sahib and brought them to the aid of the Guru ji along with a number of other Sikhs from the area around Amritsar. This contingent took up a position where they could intercept the enemy before it reached the Guru's encampment. The mound and the pool were sufficiently fortified by the Guru. The Guru himself took up a position on the mound and directed the operation from there.

It was May 1705. The Sikhs engaged the Mughal forces. A large number of Sikhs who were lighting on the Eastern side of the mound were giving way to pressure from the Royal armies when all at once the forty deserters charged and cut off the ambitious band of attackers. The Guru also sent reinforcements, He showered arrows from his strategic position on the mound, down on the Imperial army, killing a number of them. The resistance of the Sikhs became so fierce that the invaders were completely demoralized. The enemy became restive for want of water. It was not possible for them to reach the lake of Khidrana. The only water they could get was fifteen miles behind them. Thirst and oppressive heat, and the tough resistance offered by the Sikhs, compelled the Mughal army to retreat.

After the retreat of the Mughal forces, Guruji came down from the mound towards the Eastern side where the Sikhs had checked the advance of the enemy. Guruji personally visited the heroes and taking the head of each hero in his lap, wiped the dust off his face and blessed him. One of the forty deserters, Mahan Singh by name, was fatally wounded but was not yet dead. He opened his eyes at the loving touch of the Master. The Guru said to him, "I am pleased with you all for the wonderful act of your bravery, Is there anything you desire of me?" Mahan Singh folded his hands and replied faintly. "If you are really pleased, Lord, then tear up the document of shame whereby we disowned you at Anandpur." The Guru's heart was moved. He took the paper from his pocket and tore it to pieces. Mahan Singh thanked the Guru and then died with his heart at peace. Then the Guru found the place where the brave lady Mai Bhago lay wounded. She was unconscious. A little aid revived her. The Guru was greatly pleased with her and blessed her. The bodies of the martyrs were gathered and cremated.

Guruji named this place Muktsar, which means "the pool of salvation." He also styled the heroes as the forty Muktas (Saved ones). Ever since, a great fair has been held every year at Muktsar in memory of this great event.

"If you wish to show your true love for me,  Come to me with a promise to accept martyrdom. 
Those who follow my instructions,
 Must be ready to sacrifice their lives for the faith." 
(Sri Guru Granth Sahib)

Friday, September 27, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 230 (Bhai Hindal Ji)

B​hai Hindal Ji 

Bhai Hindal(or Bhai Handal) was a prominent Sikh of the time of Guru Amar Das Ji and Guru Ram Das ji. He was a resident of Jandiala, 19 km east of Amritsar. 
He received initiation at the hands of Guru AmarDas ji and continued to be in attendance upon his successor, fourth guru - Guru Ram Das ji. 

At the time of Guru Amardas ji, the institution of Guru-ka-langur (free kitchen) was growing and becoming a great force for change. Guru Ji ensured that social prejudices were renounced and equality of mankind accepted by all those who came to seek his blessings. Every devotee whether Hindu or Muslim, Brahmin or Shudra, rich or poor was asked to sit together as equals and partake food in the langar before he/she could see the Guru.

Bhai Hindal ji use to do sewa in preparing and serving Langar. He spoke but little, and always remained absorbed in devotion. 

As he once sat kneading flour in the Guru ka Langar, Guru Ram Das ji suddenly stepped in. Hindal rose instinctively to make his obeisance. Since the wet flour was adhering to his hands, he, as says Sri GurPratap Suraj Granth, put them behind his back so that they did not smear the Guru's feet when he touched them, and threw himself at his feet. 

The Guru was pleased with his humble devotion. "Thy love is pleasing to my heart, Hindal," he said. "Thou hast my blessing. Completed is thy service. Return now to thy native town and spread the True Name." Hindal went back to Jandiala and began to preach as instructed by the Guru. He lived to a ripe old age and remained a true Sikh to the end. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 229 (The Sikh Way of Life)

The Sikh Way of Life

Guru Nanak Dev ji, the first Guru of the Sikhs, had two Sons. Their names were Sri Chand and Lakshami Chand. Siri Chand was really a holy man. He started the Udasi sect. An Udasi is a wandering saint who leaves family life, goes to the jungle, remains unmarried and lives on charity. In this way, he tries to obtain God's grace. Guru Nanak Dev ji did not choose Siri Chand to be the Guru of the Sikhs because he did not live the life of a householder. Being the son of Guru Nanak, however, the Sikhs had great respect for him. Unlike the Udasis, the Sikhs lead a family life and realise their responsibility towards the society they live in and thus   do not agree with the Udasi way of searching for God in the jungle.

One day, Guru Ram Das ji and his Sikhs were busy digging the sacred pool at Amritsar. Someone brought the message that Baba Siri Chand was coming to see the Guru. The news rather surprised the Sikhs. When the evening prayer was over, Baba Siri Chand arrived. The Guru and some of the Sikhs received and welcomed him. The Guru liked him for his holy living and he bowed to the old Baba Siri Chand. He helped him dismount from his horse, and they walked to the Diwan (Sikh religious congregation). The Sikhs sat there singing the Lord's praises(Keertan). Guru Ram Das ji and Baba Siri Chand also sat down among the Sikhs. Now the Guru spoke to the Sikhs, "Religion means true living. It does not mean running away from the world. It is not a set of rules. It means believing in God and loving His people. Mere words do not make religion, it is good actions that matter. A family man stands a better chance of doing good actions, because he lives among God's people. He works hard, earns his living and shares his earnings with the needy. It is thus that Baba Nanak tells us to earn God's grace by living in a family and not by going away alone into the jungle."

Baba Siri Chand ji listened to all this very attentively. "Ram Das," he said, "What you say is not true. Being a householder you cannot obtain God's grace. It comes only to those who keep away from family life, keep fasts, remain unmarried and remember God's Name. You are talking of God's grace as if it were child's play."

"Dear Baba," said Guru Ram Das ji, "That is what Guru Nanak told us. It is the magic of the Name, the true Name (Sat Nam) that brings to you God's grace. The Guru's Sikhs always keep God's Name in their hearts. Thus the Sikhs learn that God is one and is everywhere. All human beings are equal before God. The millions of suns, skies and worlds like ours are made by God. A Sikh looks upon all people as brothers and sisters of the same family. He loves them, serves them and listens to them. This is how men learn about God and how a man may become a saint with the help of others. This has been going on for millions of years. Man cannot learn about God from wild beasts in the jungle. What he really needs is the company of good men(Satsangat)"

"Ram Das," said Baba Siri Chand, "The Guru's way seems to be too simple. It looks like a broad and easy path. But I am sure God cannot be known so easily. One has to stay away from the world, remain unmarried and remember God. A householder can never do all this, can he?" "God is not far away," replied Guru Ram Das ji. "If you accept His Will, you will find Him in your heart. He does not live in this or that temple, church or mosque. We need only repeat His Name and love His people. A householder can really find God easily, because he does not look to others for his food and clothing as do the Udasis, who go begging for food to the very householders whose way of life they do not like. The Guru's Sikhs would live, work and repeat the true Name as family men and help others in need. They accept God's Will and thus easily obtain God's grace."

"Ram Das," said Baba Siri Chand. "Your way of life runs too straight and clear. I understand your point of view. You know so much, but you look no different from your simple Sikhs. Why have you grown such a long beard?" "Dear sir," replied the Guru. "It is God's way. It is His sweet Will that all men have beards. The beard is a part of our body. My beard is just its natural length. It gives me a complete look. I take good care of it, that is all. What is more, this long beard of mine is for wiping the feet of all holy men like you."

At this, all the Sikhs sitting there were very pleased and spoke out "Great is our Guru Ram Das. O wonderful Guru, grant us all such humility and goodness."

Baba Siri Chand was greatly impressed at the Guru's humility. Later the Guru made him a fond farewell. 

"Men put on many strange clothes and wander far away in search of God. But they forget to make their hearts clean. They shall neither find God, nor any happiness after death. O Man, be a saint in your own home and follow the Guru's way; Practise truth, love and good works. This way alone You will know truth and be granted Gods grace.  (Guru Ram Das ji)

"O God, bathe me in the pool of nectar. So that I may meditate on your Name, The root of joy, the life of the world, The giver to all men; Then I shall feel blessed."  (Guru Ram Das ji)