Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sakhi Series :- 214 (Sant Gurbachan Singh's visit to Shaheed Sarovar)

Sant Gurbachan Singh's visit to Shaheed Sarovar

This Sakhi is taken from the life of Sant Giani Gurbachan Singh Ji Khalsa Bhindranwale who were the 12th Jathedar of Damdami Taksal in an unbroken linage of Brahmgiani Jathedars of Taksal starting from a joint leadership of Bhai Mani Singh Shaheed and  Baba Deep Singh Ji Shaheed.  Interestingly, both of the latter mentioned shaheed mahapurkhs gave darshan to Sant Giani Gurbachan Singh ji at Shaheed Sarovar. Mahapurkh Sant Baba Gurbachan Singh Ji had a life of intense simran and seva. This was accompanied by their bhagti accumulated in a past life in which they had been close to Guru Sahib themselves and also the blessing and guidance of their spiritual mentor, himself a complete saint and leader of taksal: Sant Giani Sundar Singh Ji.

This katha begins at Chamkaur Sahib where mahapurkh had come in a state of  spiritual bairag (longing). This is the same land where two of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaj's own Sahibzaade Baba Ajit Singh Ji and Baba Jujhar Singh became shaheed (martyred), where three of the 5 beloved Panj Pyare: Bhai Sahib Singh Ji, Bhai Himmat Singh Ji and Bhai Mokham Singh Ji became shaheed along with 40 other Singhs. At this historical site there is an old  Baoli Sahib or an open well west of the Akali Bunga. Mahapurkh chose this place for their meditation, seeing it as a very quiet tranquil place with little disturbance from people. It was perfect for them, as they had no intention of openly showing their meditation to the world, for them it was important that they kept their spiritual status hidden from the world as Gurbani informs: 
"hon najeek khudhaae dhai bhaeth n kisai dhaen ||116||" 
They are close to the Lord, but they do not reveal their secret to anyone. ||116||.
This is quiet contrary to the elaborate asthans built nowadays. Mahapurkh on the contrary had no intention of drawing any attention to themselves but instead went to the extent of doing their abhias (meditative practise) at night between the hours of 8pm and 4am, continuously without interval. The interesting nature of this bhagati was that it was done inside the cold water for the whole eight hours.

Their avastha became such they felt like leaving this filth-ridden kalyugi world. They set off nearly 50 km north on foot towards the mountainous region near Kiratpur Sahib. In their mind they became firm that they have no further desire to communicate with the world, they would just do their bhajan and bandagi until their final swaas (breath) and leave this temporary body in the serenity of the mountains. After setting off, doing jaap (meditation) with every step they arrived in the mountainous region. Upon some exploration Mahapurkh got lost and ended up climbing a mountain when finally they came to the opening of a cave. Mahapurkh had a natural intuitive feeling that it would lead to somewhere so they entered the cave. When they set their feet in the cave and walked forward they saw there was darkness surrounding them, both forwards and towards the enetrance they had come through. During the narration of this Sakhi Sant Gurbachan Singh ji told that at one point it became so endlessly dark that they considered going back but then thought again. They remembered Guru Granth Sahib Jis Bani: "aagaahaa koo thraagh pishhaa faer n muhaddarraa ||"
(Look ahead; don't turn your face backwards.) and thought it their duty as a gursikh to continue.

They continued, reading gurbani continuously when finally they saw some light that showed the end of the cave. When they reached the exit of the cave they looked and it was completely bright and infront of them was a very beautiful sarovar (pool). Its beauty was both unheard and unseen off anywhere in the world before. Mahapurkh were astounded and became increasingly intrigued about where they had arrived. Around the pool were magnificently tall trees and on closer inspection they saw Shastars hung on the trees. Then when they proceeded further they saw people, human beings. These humans were not normal though, in size they were like giants in tales and their bodies reflected light. Mahpurkh thought to themselves  'maybe the end of your life is such' looking at the size of these intimidating people. Mahapurkh thought they were remote tribal people residing here but there was something very different about them from normal human beings. Still, with the teachings of Gurbani enshrined in them Mahapurkh did not turn back but rather they proceeded forward reciting gurbani. One of these people walked past mahapurkh and they caught a glimpse of their attire. Mahapurkh were very surprised that these people were wearing a kashera and a dastar, things began to make sense: the shastars on the tree and now their attire. It was at this point that it hit Sant ji that these must be Singhs of Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaj. But the question was, what exactly were they doing here?

Suddenly one of them shouted "Gurbachan Singh Ji". Mahapurkh were surprised that they knew their name but they didn't even know what sort of people they were. Sant Jee were amazed that they knew his name, yet they had never met.  Then suddenly the tallest one out of them, assumedly their Jathedar Sahib said to those giant people "we'll converse with Giani Ji after get something to eat for them". At which one of them took a long spear and threw it towards the pool, when he pulled it out their came 3 unknown vegetables which looked a bit like yam or jimikand. They cooked these on hot coal and whilst they were being cooked the Jathedar Sahib of these people asked mahapurkh "why are you amazed Giani ji, are you surprised we called you by your name".  The jathedar sahib ji continued "Giani ji, actually, we are surprised that you didn't recognize your own people". Mahapurkh said they didn't recognize them.

One of the giant people stood up and said "Giani ji first I will introduce myself, I am Banda Singh Bahadur." Baba Banda Singh Bahadur then pointed at another person "This is the mukhi of your Taksal Baba Deep Singh Ji".  "Look there, that is Bhai Mani Singh ji and over there is Bhai Taru Singh Ji". Mahapurkh began pinching themselves to check if they were having a dream listening to the names of these shaheed singhs.  Mahapurkh joined their hands together and said " Singho, Guru Pyareo Vaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaheguru Ji Ki Fateh". Your words are true but I'd like to ask that all that you named have become shaheed but here you are all talking to me? First please be kind enough to tell me what is going on with me am I asleep or awake am I conscious or unconscious am I in a deep meditative state. Where am I?"

The Singhs spoke " Mahpurkho you are awake, what you are seeing is true. It is no illusion". By now the vegetable product was ready and they served mahapurkh and the other Singhs. Baba ji said that this was like nothing they had ever tasted, it had the smell like Karah Parshad and tasty as Amrit. After eating they requested the Singhs to clearly tell them what was going on.

As Mahapurkh were narrating this Giani Mohan Singh ji was sitting on the side of their bed, away from the direct vision of mahapurkh quickly jotting down all the whole sakhi. Pandit Prem Singh was sat infront of them, he tells us the face of mahapurkh became reddened with bliss as they told the sakhi to them.

Sant Gurbachan Singh ji inquired whether they were talking about Shaheed Singhs and that they should openly tell them what's happening with them. The Singh spoke once again "Giani Gurbachan Singh Ji, you are such a high scholar you narrate katha to so many. Please could you recite katha for us too please."  Mahapurkh said "I don't know about katha or anything at the moment please could you just explain what is happening with me, is this Sachkhand, the earth, where?."

The Singh Sahib ji said " Very well, Giani JI when a Singh who has done kamai (practice) of Gurbani during their life or become Shaheed goes to Sachkhand they stop at the door where two Singhs ask them at the gate of Sachkand if they have any further desire to do Seva or they wish to go to Sachkhand. At this point if one says no, then they are escorted to Sachkhand but if they have a further desire then they come to us. This place is only second to Sachkhand."

Mahapurkh asked them: "Singho today you have given me darshan, will their come a time when you come to the earth and openly reveal yourself."

The Singhs said "Yes. Yes, we will. Look there are our Shastar and look there are our Nagarhe (Battle Drums). Mahpursho the dohra you recite, keep reciting it. "Raj Karega Khalsa" The Khalsa shall not rule through any other earthly way, it is us that will create the Khalsa Raj. We are preparing. You came through this cave Giani Ji, and we will come out this way. Akal Purkh has done boundless kirpa on you Giani ji, you have entered this cave once you never again in your life will get this opportunity. You can go back and find this cave but you will never be able too. Mahapursho we will beat the drums before we leave here, that time we will create the Khalsa Raj - The Halemi Raj where no one will suffer"

Mahapurkh then said their Gurfateh to the Shaheed Singhs and left 'Shaheed Sarovar'. When narrating this sakhi from their own life Mahapurkh, they became teary and said "I have wondered in the mountains many a time. I have never found that place again". Mahapurkh looked around, they saw Giani Baba Mohan Singh ji writing. Mahapurkh asked them "Giani ji  have you written everything? Pass me your notebook". Mahapurkh took the notebook and ripped it and said "Singho I forgot the rule of Gurbani "hon najeek khudhaae dhai bhaeth n kisai dhaen ||116||" (They are close to the Lord, but they do not reveal their secret to anyone. ||116||) and in your prem (love) I have told you this sakhi, I have ripped this because I do not want it published. It is my secret."

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Sikh Sakhis :- 213 ( Bhai Bagga Singh & The Horse Thief )

Bhai Bagga Singh & The Horse Thief
Bhai Bagga Singh was riding on his horse one day when he say that on the road was a man walking very slowly, holding his back with both his hands. The man called out to Bhai Bagga Singh, "Brother! I'm very sick and cannot walk. If you would let me ride the horse for a couple of miles, I will be able to go home to my village and you can drop me off there. May God bless you if you help me!"

Bhai Bagga Singh felt compassion for the man and got off his horse. He helped the sick man onto the saddle and took the reins in his hands and began to walk along side the horse, leading it forward on the road.

The man who had asked for the ride sat on the horse for some time, lightly grasping the reins as well. As time passed, sometimes he began to occasionally tightly grasp them and then let them go again. After some distance, the rider sharply pulled the reins out of Bhai jee's hands, turned the horse around and began to speed away. Bhai Bagga Singh called behind him, "Brother! Please listen to what I have to say, even it is from at a distance! If you want to take the horse, it is your decision, but listen to what I have to say!"

The thief was quite surprised but curious. He stopped the horse at quite a distance and said, "Speak!"

Bhai jee began, "Don't ever tell anyone that you stole this horse by feigning sickness and getting a ride from me and then pulling the reins away from my hand."

The thief asked in bewilderment, "Why??" The Sikh replied, "If you do this, you will be harming countless truly ill people who will need help during a journey. If they ask for assistance, people will think they are thieves like you who will take away their horse like that thief once took away Bagga Singh's (my) horse. You will die one day yet there will always be people who become ill and people who can help them but the story of your actions today will forever create distrust between them."

Bagga Singh then said no more and slowly began to walk away. The thief rode off in the opposite direction.

Bagga Singh reached home, bathed, recited Rehraas Sahib, ate and then fell asleep. Early the next morning, Bagga Singh came out into his courtyard out of habit to give hay to his horse. The horse too would recognize Bagga Singh's foot steps and would neigh to greet him. Today as usual he heard the neigh of his horse and memory returned to him that his horse had been stolen yesterday and so where was this neighing coming from? As these thoughts went through his mind, he heard the neighing once again.

Bagga Singh walked forward in amazement and saw that his horse was tied to the gate of his home. He patted the horse on the back and looked out and saw that yesterday's thief was standing outside, looking down in embarrassment.

Bagga Singh asked: "Well my sick friend, are you feeling better today?" The thief replied, "Bagga Singh, I was truly sick yesterday but you are the doctor who has brought me back to my senses. Take your horse back brother. Now there will be no story of treachery and no harm will come to anyone who becomes ill on a journey. In the future I too will try to become like Bagga Singh and have mercy on those in need. Give me your blessings."