Hum Hindu Nahin

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naa ham hi(n)dhoo n musalamaan
I am not a Hindu, nor am I a Muslim
poojaa karo n nivaaj gujaaro
I do not perform Hindu worship services, nor do I offer the Muslim prayers.
eaek nira(n)kaar lae ridhai namasakaaro
I have taken the One Formless Lord into my heart; I humbly worship Him there.
– Guru Arjan Dev Ji, Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, Ang 1136

In today’s advanced age and time, more and more people have access to education and information than ever before. This has plunged majority of them into the lofty heights of self-acknowledgement. Though this is not a new breed of people (such false preachers and self-proclaimed wise men exited since the beginning of civilization), they philosophies spread their net on people of weaker judgement and victimise them into believing their poisonous preachings. The people of Truth have always been in the minority, because I believe that is the very intention of God. If the people of Truth were in the majority, the minority would be oppressed – like the Mughals did when they spread their faith by the sword. God’s purpose to keep the men of Truth in the minority is to prove that no matter the opposition, Truth’s might triumphs – its takes time, sacrifices and faith to win over the enemy.

The day Nanak was born, only the village Pandit and the midwife instantly recognised the divine soul. Extremely few saw the Diving Light in Nanak, while the rest remained ignorant until the day Nanak merged into the Divine. The ignoranced did not end there – opposition against the House of Nanak continued through the successor Sikh Gurus and still exists today. But today’s ignorance of Sikhi is prevalent not just in non Sikhs, but in many Sikhs as well. Sikhi has proved to me, beyond doubt, that when Truth comes face-to-face with you, the face of the enemy can be seen as Truth reflects only that what we really are. Truth is a mirror – it never reflects what the one facing it isn’t. When I face Guru Granth Sahin (as Shabad), I see what I really am – if I am earnestly following the Shabad, then the picture is pretty, otherwise it is disgusting – and it’s mine, whether I like it or not. Read the rest of this entry »

Rare painting of Dasmesh Guru

Every artist has his/her interpretation of a subject and the Sikh Gurus have been painted by artists from from various religious backgrounds, no wonder the sometimes extremely strange depictions – just like the one of Guru Gobind Singh Ji below. The overly exagerated kalgi, green clothing and seating posture comes as a completely different image of the Guru that we are relatively accustomed to. Nevertheless, the painting is indeed beautiful. Because Sikh Gurus never encouraged the painting of the their portraits during their lifetime, admirers and devotees were left to put to canvas the image conjured through years of folk-lore, imagination and fond stories. That’s why almost all artists depict the Sikh Gurus differently – they painted them with what appeased their imaginations. At least through their interpretations, we get a glimpse of just how our Gurus may have looked like, though the images do not necessarily depict the exact picture – no one can actually paint the true ambiance of the Guru for that can only be done in the conscience of the true admirer and devotee. And the conscience can never be put to words or pictures, it can only be experienced by the blessed individual.

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At the feet of Guru Nanak

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charan gehae guradhaev kae sath sabadh dhae mukath karaayaa
Those who have caught hold of the feet of the Guru have been liberated through the true Word.
– Vaars, Bhai Gurdas Ji

Guru Baba Nanak travelled thousands of miles – much of them on foot. He trekked through heat, cold, rain and thunder. Spent nights under the blanket of stars and slept under trees in the thick of dark nights. With only a few clothes strapped to his shoulder, we cannot even begin to imagine how Baba went through these journeys not once, but three times over. He spent his entire life in travel, preaching the Word of Akaal Purakh. Welcomed by some, rejected by most, he nevertheless kept walking and kept meditating. Any mortal like ourselves would have collapsed under the strain of walking and mostly shelterless cold months. As I look at the painting below, I wonder, those blessed feet must be tired and sore, and yet his visage was aglow with the Divine Grace. Had I been there where Baba Nanak decides to take a breather by the roadside, I would have fallen at his feet and washed them with tears of a love he inspired. O my Nanak, had I been there, could your slave be blessed with the seva of washing your feet and soothing your sores? You have walked miles and miles on end, for me, to deliver me from this dark age and enjoin me to the Name of my Husband Lord . . .

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sunee pukaar dhaathaar prabh gur naanak jag maahi(n) pat(h)aayaa
The benefactor Lord listened to the cries (of humanity) and sent Guru Nanak to this world.
charan dhhoe rehiraas kar charanaamrith skhiaa(n) peelaayaa
He washed His feet, eulogised God and got his Disciples drink the ambrosia of his feet.
paarabreham pooran breham kalijug a(n)dhar eik dhikhaayaa
He preached in this darkage (kaliyug) that, saragun (Brahm) and nirgun (Parbrahm) are the same and identical.
chaarai pair dhhara(n)m dhae chaar varan eik varan karaayaa
Dharma was now established on its four feet and all the four castes (through fraternal feeling) were converted into one caste (of humanity).
raanaa ra(n)k baraabaree pairee(n) pavanaa jag varathaayaa
Equating the poor with the prince, he spread the etiquette of humbly touching the feet.
oulattaa khael pira(n)m dhaa pairaa(n) oupar sees nivaayaa
Inverse is the game of the beloved; he got the egotist high heads bowed to feet.
kalijug baabae thaariaa saathanaam parrh ma(n)thr sunaayaa
Baba Nanak rescued this dark age (kaliyug) and recited ‘satinam’ mantr for one and all.
kal thaaran gur naanak aayaa
Guru Nanak came to redeem the kaliyug.
-Vaars, Bhai Gurdas Ji

Nanak the Saint, Nanak the Warrior

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Many Sikhs like to draw differences between Guru Nanak Dev Ji and Guru Gobind Singh, citing that Nanak was peaceful, while Gobind was violent. In the first place, there was nothing violent about Guru Gobind Singh Ji – he was a warrior that fought without anger (that begets violence). How can a Guru, who was the 10th Nanak, go back on his own word on kroadh (anger)? He fought with determination, not anger, to conquer the tyrant rule of the Mughals. But today’s Sikhs still argue on the facts of Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s Khalsa Rehat – Khande-Di-Pahul, maintaining unshorn tresses, and the way of the warrior. Guru Nanak Dev Ji and Guru Gobind Singh Ji was the same, let there be no doubt about that. There was no contradiction between the message of Guru Nanak and the action of Guru Gobind Singh. If we study deeper into Shabad Gurbani (Guru Granth Sahib Ji) and our history, we will discover that it is indeed true that Guru Nanak’s spirit passed from one Guru to another and now resting in Guru Granth Sahib Ji. The bodies of the Gurus were mortal, but the spirit (of God’s Word and Message) was the same and ascending from Guru to Guru, until Guru Gobind Singh Ji sealed the final image of Nanak’s Sikh – in the form of the Khalsa. Now, Guru Nanak’s Sikh (student) was complete – both in Bani (Guru Granth Sahib Ji) and Bana (Khalsa roop).

Firstly, Ganjnama declares that fact that Guru Gobind Singh Ji was indeed the 10th Nanak. Ganjnama, composed by Bhai Nand Lal Goya (one of the 52 poets in the court of Guru Gobind Singh Ji) renders homage to the Sikh Gurus whom the poet recalls in his deep personal devotion and veneration. The poet calls Guru Nanak Dev Ji, the supreme dervish and all his successors being One with him in spirit, embodying the same message. Bhai Nand Lal Goya’s poetry was blessed with the supreme status of having been instructed to Sikhs by Guru Gobind Singh Ji that it could be sung along with the compositions of Bhai Gurdas Ji as with the Shabads of Guru Granth Sahib Ji. In that respect, Bhai Nand Lal Goya’s writtings are considered as true as Gurbani and accepted that if he vouched that fact of the spirit of Nanak being the same in all the successor Gurus, then it is our loss if we do not believe his word as it was approved by Guru Gobind Singh Ji. Read the rest of this entry »