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A Discussion of McLeod and the Kartarpur Bir Controversy: A Second Look

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by vsgrewal48895, Mar 30, 2009.

  1. vsgrewal48895

    vsgrewal48895
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    Re: Sabd Guru on Sword (ਖੜਗੁ/ਖੰਡਾ)

    Dear Tony Ji,

    The Sikh scholars have a fear of their job or being excummunicated from the faith by SGPC-so they get scared in coldly disssecting the questions being raised.

    Two years ago I visited a friend in Halifax, England where he requested me to speak. There I met a Giani Ji who wrote me the whole poem of Bhagat Surdas;

    Cwf mn hir ibmuKn ko sMg
    Chaad mun Har bemukhan ko sung.


    It means, “O ‘my mind, get rid of the company of non-believers of God.”

    I just can't put my hands on it. Guru Arjan took only that line and responds to it. It is not one line as a complete poem of his.

    The riddle I posted was delt by Professor Pashara Singh, being a friend of mine did not coldlt dissect it;

    GURU ARJAN'S RAMAKALI HYMN (Raag Ramkali, AGGS, Page, 927)

    Dr. Pashaura Singh

    One of the main issues that have drawn scholarly attention in Kartarpur-Banno debate is related to a hymn by Guru Arjan in Ramkali mode. A single couplet stands recorded in the version of the Adi Granth after chhant 4, before Guru Composition on the six seasons (ਰੁਤੀ) of the Indian calendar. 1n order to address the incomplete nature of this hymn, W.H. McLeod argues that there should apparently be a complete hymn in section assigned to the longer chhant compositions. The organization of hymns in this section indicates that the couplet must be either the first two lines of a chhant, or a Sloke introducing a chhanD. The academic issue raised by McLeod drew a great many polemic responses from Sikh scholars, which generated more heat than light on the Kartarpur-Banno debate.124
    It is important to note that only two lines of this hymn are to note that two lines of this hymn are to be found in the manuscripts of both the Kartarpur and the Lahore traditions.125 Even in the Kanpur manuscript (1642), which claimed to be the first copy of the Adi Bir prepared by Bhai Banno (and hence popularly known as Banno Bir), the additional twenty two lines of the hymn were added later in a smaller hand.126

    One can argue that the scribe had originally written a single couplet since the remainder of the hymn was not available at that time. When ¬additional portion became available, he completed the hymn in Banno version of the Adi Granth. This explanation may be supported by the scribal practice of writing the opening verse first completing the text later. But this simple explanation does not solve the textual puzzle. I shall argue that the completion of this hymn page 115 was intentionally done at a time when the volume was converted into the Banno text.

    In order to understand the problem of the Banno recension, we must examine Guru Arjan's Ramkali hymn in its original context. In folio 703/1 of the Kartarpur' manuscript the two lines read as follows:
    Raga Ramkali Mahala 5

    ਰਣ ਝੁੰਝਨੜਾ ਗਾਉ ਸਖੀ ਹਰਿ ਏਕੁ ਧਿਆਵਹੁ ॥ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਤੁਮ ਸੇਵਿ ਸਖੀ ਮਨਿ ਚਿੰਦਿਅੜਾ ਫਲੁ ਪਾਵਹੁ ॥

    Raṇ jẖunjẖnaṛā gā­o sakẖī har ėk ḏẖi­āvahu. Saṯgur ṯum sėv sakẖī man cẖinḏi­aṛā fal pāvhu.

    Sing the melodious harmonies, O my companions, and meditate on the One Lord. Serve your True Guru, O my companions, and you shall obtain the fruits of your mind's desires.

    Sing the trilling tunes in the [dance]-field, my sister-friends, by meditating on the one lord. By serving the true Guru, my sister-friends, accomplish your heart's desires.

    The opening words, ran jẖunjẖnaṛā (trilling tunes [sung in the dance]-field), indicate a wedding scene at which Punjabi girls were accustomed to gather together in a circle to sing wedding songs. Guru Arjan may have uttered these aphoristic sayings on the happy occasion of a marriage, intending that these be developed into a complete hymn later. As the opportunity for its completion never came, only two lines, followed by a blank space, stand recorded in the Kartarpur manuscript. Because there is no mention of this hymn in the index of this volume, and because the entry of the couplet (though made by the same scribe) was done with a different pen, we may conclude that the couplet was introduced some time after the compilation of the Adi Granth in 1604 and before Guru Arjan's death in 1606. This is also confirmed by the fact that this couplet (or complete hymn) is not to be found in an earlier Sikh scriptural tradition, popularly known as MS 1245 preserved at the Guru Nanak Dev University library. 127.

    The complete hymn, along with the additional lines, is to be found in the Banno version of the Adi Granth. It reads as follows:
    Page 116,

    The lord Says Nanak, the journey [of life] has borne fruit through contemplation of the person of the true Guru. (1) By collecting the nectar like food the whole family was called [into the Guru's presence) - Let immortal divine Name be distributed (ਵੰਡਿਆਹੁ) to all so that every one is completely satisfied. The true Guru made the distribution [of the divine name] to everyone while sitting [on the throne] and all were blessed with the gift of love. Everyone received a share (ਵੰਡਿ) according to his destiny, and no one went empty-handed [from the house of the Guru]. The whole Sikh Sangat gathered together [in the Guru's presence] and each person was absorbed in great joy. Says Nanak, 'by seeking the lord's protection I have attained all comforts: (2) all the rites (riti) were performed by meditating deeply on the lord. The tonsure ceremony (bhaddanu unet) was conducted by repeating the divine knowledge of the Guru. Repeating the Guru’s knowledge provided all comforts, and thus the boy was sent to school. The child received a perfect education by obeying the lord in his heart. All were feasted (Uevanavaru) lavishly at the time of the name-giving ceremony [of the child], and no one went away empty-handed. Nanak the humble servant of God pleads: 'My lord is [my] friend at death (3). The saintly people who gathered together [in the Guru's presence] sum that the boy should now be betrothed (mangeva) by good fortune. Those of rectitude and wisdom were found as parents of the bride. Let the gift of Amrit (divine name) be distributed among all. The mystical state of union with the immortal name was attained when the Guru established the divine knowledge (in the man) and removed all kinds of suffering. The auspicious moment, which was written [by destiny] from the very beginning.. (And the marriage was affirmed by the parents of the bride. The lord arranged the marriage-party in such a way that all kinds of sages, devotees and godly men participated in it. Says Nanak, the task of [marriage] was accomplished and the unstruck music sounded forth. (4) 128

    Evidently, the hymn describes the rituals in the life-cycle of individual in Punjabi society in the seventeenth century which included the birth of a male child, the name-giving ceremony, and the puberty rite, the first admission in a school, the betrothal rite and the marriage ceremony. A further symbolic meaning gets attached to these rituals since they are used as occasions for the distribution of the gift of Amrit (the divine name) among the devotees of the Guru.
    The real issue, however, is related to the authorship of the Banno hymn. Did Guru Arjan compose the Ramkali hymn? If he did do so, who else could have been responsible for completing hymn, and why? To find answers to these questions, we must examine117 the poetic style of this hymn and other linguistic features with reference to other works of Guru Arjan. This method of enquiry reveals the following significant points.

    The fourth line in the first stanza (sat guru sachai bheji dia char jivan vaddu pu_nnia, the true Guru has sent the long-lived child to enjoy great fortune) alludes to the opening lines of Guru Arjan's hymn in Asa raga, which he composed to celebrate the birth of his only child, Har Gobind, the sixth Guru: The true Guru has sent the child. The long lived child has been born by destiny (sat guru sachai dia bheji// chir jivan upajia sanjogi).129 This allusion has been largely responsible for the assumption that the Banno hymn concerns the life-cycle rituals relating to Guru HarGobind's early life. For instance, G.B. Singh's manuscript note on the copy of a Banno recension in the India Office Library reads: 'the hymn (chhant) about the early life of the sixth Guru is given complete[ly] (24 lines); and not only The first two lines. 130 It is important to note, however, that apart from this indirect association, there is no explicit reference to the sixth Guru in the text itself. Rather, the author of the Banno hymn employs the metaphor of a unique son (anup balak) as a poetic convention to describe the life-cycle rituals of Punjabi society in general. 131
    Secondly, there are certain linguistic expressions in the hymn which cannot be the work of Guru Arjan. For instance, for him to have used the phrase satgur bahi kai vand kini (the true Guru made the distribution while sitting) for he is totally alien to the humble nature of Guru Arjan.132 He never directly refers to himself as the true Guru in his compositions. The hymn was definitely composed by a scribe who was highly motivated by the idea of completing the incomplete text in the name of the Guru. A recent example of a somewhat similar sort may be seen in Jodh Singh's addition of his own interpretation to his description of the Kartarpur Bir to solve the textual problem of this hymn. His note on the description of folio 703/1 reads as follows:

    118 Raga Ramkali Mahala 5 Salok
    ran jhunjjhanara gau sakhi hari ekdhiavahu// satgur turn sev salmi: chindiara phalu pavahu//l//133

    The word Sloke in the title and the numeral 1 at the end of the couplet do not occur in the original text of the Kartarpur volume. This is an example of making an incomplete text look like a complete text. Further, there are other examples in the Adi Granth where gurus employ single-line aphoristic sayings instead of Slokes. These single lines may be seen in the section assigned to Gurus' shaloks, surplus to the vars. 134

    Thirdly, the most significant point is that Guru Arjan never employed such words as vand (distribution) or vandiahu (distribute!) anywhere in his compositions in the Adi Granth. These words did not form part of his usual lexicon. This fact alone makes improbable his authorship of the additional material of the hymn. Similarly, other words such as riti (rites), bhaddanu unetu (the tonsure rite), jevanavaru (the ritual feast associated with the sacred thread ceremony), namukaran (the name-giving ceremony) and mangeva ('the betrothal rite') only appear in the Banno version the Adi Granth in this disputed hymn. 136 Thus they were intentionally employed to give legitimacy to Brahmincal rituals in Sikh society, which were otherwise strongly repudiated by the Sikh Gurus, particularly by Guru Arjan himself. On a number of occasions Guru Nanak criticized the sacred thread (Uaneu), and other rituals associated with death (like pind, patal, kina, and diva) .137 Guru Arjan referred to the celebration of Guru Hargobind's birth by the sangat in form of the singing of gurbani, particularly the Ramakali Anandu of Page119, Guru Amar Das (gurbani sakhi anandu gavai).138 evidently this later tradition was the one in vogue among Sikhs at that time.

    Fourthly, it is the fifth Guru who, like Guru Nanak, criticizes both Hindu and Muslim beliefs, practices and texts. In 0ne of his comments on Kabir's hymns, he explicitly says: 'We are neither Hindus, nor Musalman”. He further states that he has settled the difference between Hindu and Muslim (as Kabir did), not by working out some kind of synthesis of the two, nor by keeping the observances of both, such as fasts, pilgrimage, prayers and worship, but by cultivating the remembrance of Akal Purkh within the heart. Although there is no direct reference to life-cycle rituals as such, it is implied in the general category of Hindu practices. 140 One can then raise the question as to how Guru Arjan could have been the author of such a hymn, which sanctifies Hindu rituals, when he himself was a strong critic of them. It is much more likely that the real the author of the extra material in the Ramkali hymn was a person who was under a strong Brahmincal influence. In this context Piar Singh has suggested that either a Bhatt (bard) or a Brahmin family priest) composed this hymn on the occasion of the marriage to receive jajamani (gift or stipend) from his parents. This hymn, he argues, became current under the signatures of Nanak and was then incorporated into the Banno version of Adi Granth. Gurinder Mann, on the other hand, unconvincingly uses the argument of signatures to prove Guru Arjan’s authorship of this hymn. 142 Two signatures binvanti nanak (Nanak begs) and the janu kahai nanak (Nanak the servant says) that appear in this hymn, also appear in certain hymns of Guru Arjan. But this sole convention cannot be used to attribute the hymn to the fifth Guru. It seems likely that anybody (a pundit or a Bhatt) could have picked up such expressions and composed the hymn in the name of Guru Arjan.

    Fifthly, the poetic style of the hymn is flattering and plodding, unlike what we encounter in the authentic Bani of Guru Arjan. In the first two lines following the original couplet, for instance, one Page 120 can easily sense how the author is at pains to create a tortured rhyme Uammia/punnia), and similar is the case with the last two lines of the hymn (sura/tUra). The use of the clumsy phrase charjivan in contrast to Guru Arjan's chir jivan is another indication that the author of the additional part was not a good poet. More importantly it is lacking in the structural unity that is usually achieved by Guru Arjan in his hymns. The overall tone of reading in the original scarcely matches the rhythmic beauty of Guru Arjan's poetic style.

    Finally, the theory of the origin of the Banno recension (that I have discussed in detail in my doctoral work143) needs to be further qualified in view of the above analysis. The issue of Brahmincal influence must be considered in the union of Hindali, Udasi and Bhatra interests. We shall return to this issue in Chapter Seven. This Banno interest group, it seems, had a hidden agenda to arrest the process of crystallization of the Sikh tradition. Whereas the elite group of the Panth had developed a strong sense of distinctive identity, a large body of believers was still following Brahmincal traditions. 144 The Banno group had started to exert its influence within the Panth in the area of Khara Mangat in Gujrat district, while the main centre of Sikh activities under Guru Har Gobind had already shifted to Kiratpur. Even the Amritsar area was under the control of Minas, Prithichand's descendants, and their followers. This was a time when apocryphal literature was proliferating under Brahmincal influence. This is evident from a manuscript containing the text Sukhamani Sahansarnama written by Miharban's successor under the symbol of mahalu 8 in 1646 (sambat 1703 manghar sudi 1 ).145 This composition is based on the model of Guru Arjan's Sukhamani and praises th!} Vaishnava avatars and other figures from Hindu mythology. It clearly indicates that the process of Hinduization of Sikh tradition had already begun. It was during this period that the Banno Bir was copied from the original volume in 1642, although the additional material was interpolated into it some time later. This was an intentional tampering with the Adi Granth text, which was done to legitimize the Hindu life-cycle rituals in the Sikh community by putting words into the mouth of Guru Arjan.146

    Page 121 In the light of the textual analysis of the Ramkali hymn examines W.H. McLeod’s views on the Kartarpur-Banno debate. The following excerpts from his article may prove useful in our analysis:

    The nature of these points as recorded in the Banno version suggests an obvious reason for their deletion from the Kartarpur manuscript. They incorporate concepts which would be unacceptable in the light of later Khalsa ideals. This particularly applies to a Ramkali hymn attributed to Guru Arjan which, in its Banno form, refers to the shaving of child Hargobind's head....

    If the additional portions supplied by Banno version correspond to deletions in the Kartarpur manuscript there could conceivably be justification for concluding that Banno represents an earlier recension than Kartarpur.

    Let it not be supposed that at this stage I am arguing this case as one which I am personally prepared to affirm. This I am certainly not prepared to do....
    There is thus no suggestion that the Kartarpur claims are on the brink of refutation. The point which I am endeavouring to make is simply that we need a sustained campaign of textual analysis if we are to establish a sure and certain text.147

    Here McLeod argues that the Khalsa ideals could have provided' motive for the deletion (though upon close examination we now know that there is no actual deletion) of the additional portions of the Ramkali hymn in the Kartarpur manuscript. I have personally examined folio 703/1 of the Kartarpur manuscript and can affirm that while there is a blank space of more than two folios after the opening verse of the Ramkali hymn, there is no evidence of any erasure or any other kind of deletion. If there were such a deletion, it would support the claim that the Banno text may actually represent an earlier recension than the Kartarpur text.
    Thus McLeod’s hypothesis is a clear case of retrospective interpretation which cannot be convincingly applied to explain seventeenth-century Sikh situation. The question of later deletion in this instance cannot be taken seriously since there are a number of seventeenth-century manuscripts of the Adi Granth that do not contain the extra material of the Banno version. Also, the assumption Page 122 that the hymn is somehow related to the puberty rites of Guru Har Gobind cannot be sustained. It should be emphasized here, however, that McLeod suspends his final judgement on the Kartarpur Banno issue and, instead, urges that there be a sustained campaign of textual analysis to establish a sure and certain text. Recently, however, McLeod has revised his position on the issue of Guru Arjan's Ramkali hymn. 148

    In concluding the argument of this section it may be stated that the Ramkali hymn, as found in the Kartarpur manuscript, never consisted of more than two aphoristic sayings, which may have been uttered by Guru Arjan on the occasion of a marriage. These sayings, which stand recorded in the Kartarpur volume, were perhaps intended to be developed into a complete hymn later. There is another such instance provided by Var Basant in the Adi Granth, which, unlike other Vaars of the Gurus, has only three stanzas.149 According to tradition, when Guru Arjan had just completed three stanzas of this Var, he was informed by a Sikh that langar ('communal meal') was ready. He left the work unfinished and joined the congregation for meals. This incomplete composition was recorded in the Kartarpur manuscript much later. Unfortunately Guru Arjan was executed by the Mughal authorities in 1606, before he could complete these compositions. It is my contention that it was the Banno group that completed the Ramkali hymn in their version of the Adi Granth in order to legitimize the Brahmincal life-cycle rituals in the Sikh community. This is my answer to the, academic question raised in the Kartarpur-Banno debate that has been going on for the last two decades.

    We can discuss it later.

    Virinder
     
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  3. Archived_Member4

    Archived_Member4
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    Re: McLeod and associates and their writing about Sikhism

    A Video disclosing Mcleods writing against Sikhi and Dr. Pashuara being summoned to Akal Takht and found guilty of 5 charges of blasphemy. Deletion of personal attack on another forum member. A professional association with someone with controversial views does not constitute agreement with those controversial views. Avoid guilt by association. Please debate the issues and not the personalities of other forum members : aad0002

    Tampering with the warnings of a forum moderator is a risky thing to do. I have re-instituted the bold fonts and color. aad0002 (later in the day)


    McLeod+sikhism - Google Video#

    Akal Takht Indicts Pashaura Singh

    By STAFF
    According to Virinder Singh Grewal, who has been closely associated with Pashaura Singh's tenure at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, "the then Jathedar Manjit Singh wrote the confession of the doctor himself in Punjabi, and asked him to sign it and read it" (Sikh-Diaspora, Yahoo! Groups, August 9, 2005).

    globalsikhstudies.net, Amritsar, Jun. 27, 1994

    [​IMG]
    Photo: Pashaura Singh

    In a historic judgement delivered by Professor Manjit Singh, Jathedar of Sri Akal Takht, the highest spiritual and temporal authority/seat of Sikhs, Pashaura Singh was declared guilty of five charges of blasphemy. Pashaura Singh had made a number of baseless observations in his Ph.D. thesis, 'The Text and Meaning of the Adi Granth,' submitted to the University of Toronto in 1991, to please his supervisor who is well known as an adversary of Sikhism and with an eye on a university job. The unanimous verdict followed a detailed hearing of Pashaura Singh's case in an 8 hour non-stop session of the five high priests presided over by Prof. Manjit Singh at the Akal Takht Sahib on the 25th June 1994.

    The judgement says that Pashaura Singh had attacked the authenticity of Sri Guru Granth Sahib, which had deeply hurt the sentiments of the Panth. He had also levelled baseless charges against the fourth and the fifth Masters, saying that they had made alterations in the Mul Mantra as well as linguistic and theological changes in the bani of Guru Nanak.

    The tankhah (religious punishment) awarded to Pashaura Singh for the offences committed by him, includes dusting of shoes of the sangat, washing of the parkarma [walkway] of Sri Harmandir Sahib, besides listening to kirtan and reciting of Japuji Sahib, over a period of five weeks. At the completion of this penance he has been directed to appear before the sangat at the local gurdwara in Michigan, where he resides, and request the granthi [priest] to pray for his forgiveness. It may still be necessary for him to finally appear before the Akal Takht for forgiveness as is the normal procedure in such matters.

    It may be recalled that Pashaura Singh's thesis had attracted sharp criticism from scholars, and incurred indignation and condemnation of the masses for its blasphemous formulations. S.G.P.C., the highest elected religious body of the Sikhs, took cognizance of the offence, and after a thorough scrutiny by two Expert Committees of scholars, referred the matter to Sri Akal Takht Sahib for appropriate action.

    The judgement which is reproduced [below], also directs Pashaura Singh not to publish his thesis in the present form. During the hearing Pashaura Singh submitted a confessional statement in which he pleaded guilty to all charges, and undertook to revise his thesis as well as his previous publications in the light of the findings of the present inquiry. We are also reproducing the five charges read out to Pashaura Singh, to which he pleaded guilty. In fact, these represent only a sample of the blasphemous contents of his thesis.

    The Judgment

    Ik Onkar

    Waheguru ji ki Fateh

    Sri Akal Takht Sahib

    No . . . /217/ /94 Hukmnama Sri Amritsar 27/6/94

    Dr. Pashaura Singh,

    On summons from Sri Akal Takht Sahib you presented yourself before the Takht on the 25th June, 1994 in connection with your controversial thesis 'The Text and Meaning of the Adi Granth.' After prolonged deliberations in the sacred congregation of Sikh scholars, you have pleaded guilty in writing to the five charges of misrepresentations levelled against you. In this connection you have also pledged to bow your head before every decision of the Takht.

    The views expressed in your thesis have caused intense hurt to the sentiments of Sikhs who accept Sri Guru Granth Sahib as their Living Guru. This has been demonstrated by Sikhs in India and abroad through a large number of letters, messages and books, received in the Akal Takht Sahib during the last two years. Such pious sentiments of love towards the Guru, on the part of the Sikh Sangat, have always found expression through the Akal Takht Sahib.

    As a Sikh scholar, you were expected to produce literature to promote the welfare of all, with commitment to Sri Guru Granth Sahib and the Guru Panth. But what happened was exactly the opposite of this. Taking cognizance of the overall situation in the Panth, Sri Akal Takht is pleased to issue the following orders for your compliance:

    1) You shall not publish this controversial thesis in the present form, nor shall you authorize anyone else to publish it.

    2) The charges and the objections relating to doctrines or presentation, raised by Sikh scholars against this thesis, have been pointed out, and accepted by you. Some of these have been given to you in writing. These shall be removed by you in letter and spirit from the thesis. And in case the thesis is to be published in the future, it will be done according to Gurmat with full regard for the sentiments of the Sikh community.

    3) In deference to the sentiments of the Guru Panth you shall also not publish any other such objectionable material as produced by you earlier. In the future you shall ever keep in mind the sentiments for the ascendancy of the Panth and salvation of all, and conduct only such research on Gurbani and Sikh history, as would lead to blessings of the Living Guru, Sri Guru Granth Sahib and the Guru Panth.

    Keeping in view the charges in respect of your thesis, the following tankhah [religious punishment] is prescribed for you:

    1) In order to seek divine understanding at the portals of the Lord Guru, you shall listen to kirtan at the Darbar Sahib on the 27th and 28th June, 1994 for one hour each day.

    2) On these days, for one hour each day, you shall recite the Japuji five times, over and above the nitnem [daily prayer regiment].

    3) On the same days in order to seek blessings of the Guru Sangat, you shall join the daily chore of washing the parkarma [walkway] of the Darbar Sahib for one hour each day in the afternoons.

    4) In America, where you live, you shall present yourself at the local Gurdwara Sahib; you shall perform the service of dusting the shoes of the sangat for five Sundays. Also for one hour each day you shall listen to gurbani kirtan, as well as recite Japuji five times, besides the nitnem, on each of these days.

    At the end, you shall present yourself at the Gurdwara and request the Granthi Sahib to pray for forgiveness/indulgence for you.

    (Signed) Kewal Singh, Jathedar, Takht Damadama Sahib

    (Signed) Manjit Singh, Jathedar, Sri Akal Takht Sahib

    (Signed) Joginder Singh, Granthi, Sri Harmandir Sahib

    (Signed) Bhagwan Singh, Head Granthi, Sri Akal Takht Sahib

    (Signed) Mohan Singh, Head Granthi, Sri Harmandir Sahib

    The Confession

    (English translation of confessional statement of Pashaura Singh in Punjabi in Pashaura Singh's own handwriting at Sri Akal Takht, Amritsar on June 25, 1994.)

    June 25, 1994

    The Five Singh Sahiban, Sri Akal Takht Sahib, Amritsar Sahib

    Your Holiness

    Waheguru ji ka Khalsa; Waheguru ji ki Fateh.

    Under orders from Sri Akal Takht Sahib, appearing at the Takht Sahib, this humble servant pleads guilty to the five charges in respect of my thesis (The Text and Meaning of the Adi Granth), read out as well as given to me in writing. I hereby reject in thought, word and deed all such objectionable formulations that occur in my thesis. I beg forgiveness of the Panth for whatever hurt the conclusions drawn by me in my thesis have caused to the Panth. In future I pledge to serve the Panth as a humble servant of the Panth. I also willingly accept whatever decision is announced by the Singh Sahiban.

    (Signed) Pashaura Singh 25/06/1994

    The Confession (Original in Gurmukhi/Punjabi)

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Source: http://www.sikhtimes.com/news_062794a.html
     
    #2 Archived_Member4, Mar 31, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 31, 2009
  4. vsgrewal48895

    vsgrewal48895
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    Bhai Banno’s Bir: Bhai Banno was a contemporary of Guru Arjan and Guru Hargobind. He rendered service at the construction of Harimandir at Amritsar. After completion of the Granth, he was deputed to take the volume for binding at Lahore after visiting his village on the way. During his, this journey he prepared his own copy of the Holy Granth. He got both the copies bound. (It is interesting to note that at that time all books were bound in cow hyde- Ref. Dr. Gurinder Singh Mann UCLA-Santa Barbra)It is said that he introduced some hymns, which had been omitted by the fifth Guru in his volume and installed it in his house at Khara-Mangat. Hymns added were:

    1. A hymn by Kabir in Raag Sorath; “Audhu So Jogi Guru Mera …”

    2. The disputed Chhant by Guru Arjan in Raag Ramkali; “Ran Jhunjhanara Gao
    Sakhi …” AGGS, Page 927

    3. Mira Bai’s pada, “ Man Hamara Bandhio mai …“ in raag Maru.

    4. Surdas pada, Chaddi Man Hari Bemukhan Kau Sang…..in raag Sarang.

    5. Apocrypha current in the name of Guru Nanak;

    a) Jit Dar Lakh Mohammada; Es Kalio n Panj Bhition; Dist Na Rahia Nanaka.
    b) Bai atash Ab ...: 16 Slokes.
    c) Ratanmala …: 25 stanzas.

    6. Haqiqat Rah Mukam Rajeh Shivnabhi Ki;

    7. Siahi Ki Bidhi.

    This Bir is lodged in Bhai Banno Sahib Gurudwara at Kanpur.------Gatha AGGS by Piar Singh

    Questions arise that Guru Arjan wrote lot of hymns in AGGS on his son (Later 6th Guru) why Bhai Banno so dedicated Sikh should make the changes?

    Was he capable or educated to do it?

    If he not than who?

    Were still some rituals were being performed at that time?

    Has the rest of the Sabd in question been deleted not confoming to the present Sikh thought?

    It is said that the copy or the original Pothi lying at Kartarpur is a draft kind having writings on margins, empty places and writings removed by the use of Harhtal.

    IMHO Sikh Gurus could not remove the rituals being carried out since centuries in an instant.

    Virinder S. Grewal
    Williamston, MI
     
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  5. vsgrewal48895

    vsgrewal48895
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    The Kartarpuri Bir; The custodians of this Bir claim it to be the original “Adi Granth”prepared by Bhai Gurdas under the direct supervision and guidance of Guru Arjan. Being a private property, it is not open to all for inspection. Only a few chosen persons have had access to it.

    Due to the controversy surrounding Raag Mala, in the early 20th century, SGPC asked a committee consisting of Bhai Jodh Singh, Principal Ganga Singh and Jathedar Mohan Singh to determine if it was a genuine part or an interloper in AGGS.

    The contentions before them were:

    1. Ragmala is an integral part of the Bir

    2. The Bir fulfills 3 conditions necessary

    a) Japu is a copy of one inscribed by Guru Ramdas.

    b) The dates of demise of the first to fifth Gurus in it are in Bhai Gurdas’s handwriting.

    c) Approval marks of Sudhu and Sudhu Keechai are in Guru Arjan’s handwriting.

    3. The discrepancies in actual folio numbers in sabad-tatkara are explainable.

    4. The Bir has three Tatkaras, which is a unique feature of this Bir.

    The Kartarpur Manuscript has a total number of marked 974 folios (i.e. 1948 pages). The folio
    numbers are written on left-hand pages following the Sanskritic tradition. 226 folios (i.e. 456 pages are completely blank and some other folios are partly blank. Work was still going on even after 1604 CE on a Master Draft.

    The present copies are from a Bir lying at Anandpur.

    Persons, who examined this Bir;

    1. Harnam Das Udasin’s book came out in 1969 and 1972 claiming that this Bir is not the original Bir prepared by Bhai Gurdas under the supervision of Guru Arjan. It is a defective version of Bhai Banno’s version. He doubts the veracity of Guru’s autograph and it contains thousand of errors. He says that this and the Damdami original Birs are not available.

    2. Taran Taran Gianis - Ishar Singh, Narain Singh, and Lachman Singh examined this Bir in 1924.

    3. Bhai Manna Singh reports 200 text-variants of this Bir.

    4. Sant Gurbachan Singh Khalsa.

    5. S. Randhir Singh late research scholar of SGPC.

    6. Daljit Singh’s work is supportive of Bhai Jodh Singh’s views.

    7. Dr.Mcleod mentions that two other Englishmen with Bhai Jodh Singh examined Bir named Dr.
    J.C.Archer and Dr.C.H.Loehlin.

    Bhai Jodh Singh’s findings;

    1. The Granth has a new margin affixed to it on all four sides and mended at many places.

    2. Folio numbers appear on the left side.

    3. Folio numbers appearing in the table of contents often differ from those in the text.

    4. The Bir has large numbers of blank pages in between the inscribed ones.

    5. All the folio-pages that are blank or inscribed have foil numbers, indicating that numbering was done before the hymns were inscribed.

    6. Just below certain sub-headings of Raag Asa or Gauri are hanging figures peculiar to this copy.

    7. Bir has three Tatkaras: Suchi-patra, Sabd-tatkara and Tatkara-tatkara. This shows where respective ragas figure in the Sabd-tatkara.

    8. The suchi-patra lists the presence of two autographs in the Bir, one by fifth Guru and the other by 6th Guru.

    9. The Bir has few extra-canonical documents pasted on it, a recipe for converting mercury in to ash (kushta, bhasam) to make it serve as panacea for several diseases.

    10. There are numerous discrepancies in the listing of hymns in the tatkaras and their corresponding texts in the Bir.

    11. At the close of certain vars the word sudh or sudh keechai appears as proper.

    12. The vars have tunes (dhunies) indicated on them.

    13. The Bir abounds in numerous cuttings, deletions, additions, and corrections. Corrections at certain places have been made by erasing the previous matter with hartal, the yellow paste, where as many deletions have been effected by penning through the unwanted text.

    14. It has only Raag Mala at the end. No other apocryphal matter mentioned in the contents page is available.

    15. Five to six hands can be discerned at work in the Bir. These have to be accounted for since it is claimed to be solely written by Bhai Gurdas.

    Virinder S. Grewal
    Williamston, MI
     
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  6. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    It is important to establish as rules for discussion that reporting the views of someone does not equal endorsing their views. Thus when forum member virinder ji reports on a sequence of events as established in the writing of Dr. Pashuara, he is not necessarily agreeing with Dr. Pashuara.

    There have been numerous discussions of the Kartarpur Bir, here on SPN and elsewhere, in which the authenticity of two birs (Kartarpur Bir and Banno Bir) has been vetted. Forum member virinderji has noted this as a controversy. We now have two articles posted that look at each bir independently. Discussion is not furthered by anything less than permitting discussion itself to take place.
     
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  7. vsgrewal48895

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    Dear Tony,

    I do not agree with the findings of Dr. Pashara Singh's article I posted. I posted it to start a discussion. While I posted a gist of both Birs, IMHO some changes have been made by some one.
    Kartarpur Bir with its draft like structure, cuttings, additions, written on the margins, deletions as reported by Bhai Jodh Singh indicates adulteration.

    By who?

    This Bir was in possession of East India Company(English rulars) for 1-2 years before it was returned back to the owners.

    Looking at with an open mind I would accept that ritualism at that time was in vogue and Sikh Gurus could not get rid off century old customs. I would accept the Sabd in question to be valid as written in Banno's Bir.

    Cordially,

    Virinder
     
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  8. spnadmin

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    Veer virinder ji

    Please do not feel you have to explain yourself to me. For the sake of forum members who may be wondering what is going on... Discussions of the authenticity of the Kartarpur Bir are not new. Professor Sahib Singh reviewed many of the same anomalies that you have discussed in this thread and came to a similar conclusion. He is certain that the Kartarpur Bir pre-dates the Banno Bir and is the authentic Aadi Granth. I have uploaded his monograph, About The Compilation of the SGGS (1949 and 1951), in translation and edited by Professor Dalip Singh, with a forward by Dr. Noel King (1996).

    It is clear from your first article about this subject that you have also concluded the Kartarpur Bir is the original document, and that areas of confusion are probably the result of deliberate acts to efface the scripture when the bir was under the control of British agents.

    Please see the attached (Forgive me. I have already brought this to the forum's attention too many times.)

    View attachment Compilation of SGGS.pdf
     
    #7 spnadmin, Mar 31, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 31, 2009
  9. vsgrewal48895

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    Dear Tony Ji,

    I was not a member of this forum at the time of previous debate. The discussion started from the incomplete Sabd of Guru Arjan in Raag Ramkali, AGGS, Page, 927. To continue the debate I have concluded (though I am no body) that Banno Bir is right. My conclusion on the Sabd in question comes as follows;

    Guru Arjan’s Autobiographical hymns regarding his son;

    He wrote about 30 Sabds regarding Hargobind his only son in various modes and why not the one in question; and two of them are presented here;

    On his Birthday in Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 396;

    ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਸਾਚੈ ਦੀਆ ਭੇਜਿ ॥ ਚਿਰੁ ਜੀਵਨੁ ਉਪਜਿਆ ਸੰਜੋਗਿ ॥ ਉਦਰੈ ਮਾਹਿ ਆਇ ਕੀਆ ਨਿਵਾਸੁ ॥ ਮਾਤਾ ਕੈ ਮਨਿ ਬਹੁਤੁ ਬਿਗਾਸੁ ॥ ਜੰਮਿਆ ਪੂਤੁ ਭਗਤੁ ਗੋਵਿੰਦ ਕਾ ॥ ਪ੍ਰਗਟਿਆ ਸਭ ਮਹਿ ਲਿਖਿਆ ਧੁਰ ਕਾ ॥ ਦਸੀ ਮਾਸੀ ਹੁਕਮਿ ਬਾਲਕ ਜਨਮੁ ਲੀਆ ॥ ਮਿਟਿਆ ਸੋਗੁ ਮਹਾ ਅਨੰਦੁ ਥੀਆ ॥ ਗੁਰਬਾਣੀ ਸਖੀ ਅਨੰਦੁ ਗਾਵੈ ॥ ਸਾਚੇ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਕੈ ਮਨਿ ਭਾਵੈ ॥ ਵਧੀ ਵੇਲਿ ਬਹੁ ਪੀੜੀ ਚਾਲੀ ॥ ਧਰਮ ਕਲਾ ਹਰਿ ਬੰਧਿ ਬਹਾਲੀ ॥ ਮਨ ਚਿੰਦਿਆ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੂ ਦਿਵਾਇਆ ॥ ਭਏ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਏਕ ਲਿਵ ਲਾਇਆ ॥ ਜਿਉ ਬਾਲਕੁ ਪਿਤਾ ਊਪਰਿ ਕਰੇ ਬਹੁ ਮਾਣੁ ॥ ਬੁਲਾਇਆ ਬੋਲੈ ਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਭਾਣਿ ॥ ਗੁਝੀ ਛੰਨੀ ਨਾਹੀ ਬਾਤ ॥ ਗੁਰੁ ਨਾਨਕੁ ਤੁਠਾ ਕੀਨੀ ਦਾਤਿ ॥

    Saṯgur sācẖai ḏī▫ā bẖej. Cẖir jīvan upji▫ā sanjog. Uḏrai māhi ā▫e kī▫ā nivās. Māṯā kai man bahuṯ bigās. Jammi▫ā pūṯ bẖagaṯ govinḏ kā. Pargati▫ā sabẖ mėh likẖi▫ā ḏẖur kā. Ḏasī māsī hukam bālak janam lī▫ā. Miti▫ā sog mahā anand thī▫ā. Gurbāṇī sakẖī anand gāvai. Sācẖe sāhib kai man bẖāvai. vaḏẖī vel baho pīṛī cẖālī. Ḏẖaram kalā har banḏẖ bahālī. Man cẖinḏi▫ā saṯgurū ḏivā▫i▫ā. Bẖa▫e acẖinṯ ek liv lā▫i▫ā. Ji▫o bālak piṯā ūpar kare baho māṇ. Bulā▫i▫ā bolai gur kai bẖāṇ. Gujẖī cẖẖannī nāhī bāṯ. Gur Nānak ṯuṯẖā kīnī ḏāṯ.

    The True Guru has truly given a child. The long-lived one has been born to this destiny.
    He came to acquire a home in the womb, and his mother's heart is so very glad. A son is born - a devotee of the Creator of the Universe. This pre-ordained destiny has been revealed to all. In the tenth month, by the God's Order, the baby has been born. Sorrow is dispelled, and great joy has ensued. The companions blissfully sing the songs of the Guru's Bani. This is pleasing to the Eternal Akal Purkh. The vine has grown, and shall last for many generations. The Power of the Righteousness has been firmly established by the God. That which my mind wishes for, the True Guru has granted. I have become carefree, and I fix my attention on the One Akal Purkh. As the child places so much faith in his father, I speak as it pleases the Guru to have me speak. This is not a hidden secret; Guru Nanak, greatly pleased, has bestowed this gift. -----Guru Arjan, Raag Asa, AGGS, Page, 396

    2nd Sabd when Hargobind was afflicted by Small Pox in Raag Sorath;

    ਮੇਰਾ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਰਖਵਾਲਾ ਹੋਆ ॥ ਧਾਰਿ ਕ੍ਰਿਪਾ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਹਾਥ ਦੇ ਰਾਖਿਆ ਹਰਿ ਗੋਵਿਦੁ ਨਵਾ ਨਿਰੋਆ ॥ ਤਾਪੁ ਗਇਆ ਪ੍ਰਭਿ ਆਪਿ ਮਿਟਾਇਆ ਜਨ ਕੀ ਲਾਜ ਰਖਾਈ ॥ ਸਾਧਸੰਗਤਿ ਤੇ ਸਭ ਫਲ ਪਾਏ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਬਲਿ ਜਾਂਈ ॥ ਹਲਤੁ ਪਲਤੁ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਦੋਵੈ ਸਵਾਰੇ ਹਮਰਾ ਗੁਣੁ ਅਵਗੁਣੁ ਨ ਬੀਚਾਰਿਆ ॥ ਅਟਲ ਬਚਨੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰ ਤੇਰਾ ਸਫਲ ਕਰੁ ਮਸਤਕਿ ਧਾਰਿਆ ॥

    Merā saṯgur rakẖvālā ho▫ā. Ḏẖār kirpā parabẖ hāth ḏe rākẖi▫ā har goviḏ navā niro▫ā. Ŧāp ga▫i▫ā parabẖ āp mitā▫i▫ā jan kī lāj rakẖā▫ī. Sāḏẖsangaṯ ṯe sabẖ fal pā▫e saṯgur kai bal jāʼn▫ī. Halaṯ palaṯ parabẖ ḏovai savāre hamrā guṇ avguṇ na bīcẖāri▫ā. Atal bacẖan Nānak gur ṯerā safal kar masṯak ḏẖāri▫ā.

    My True Guru is my Savior and Protector. Showering us with Its Mercy and Grace, God extended Its Hand, and saved Hargobind, who is now safe and secure. The fever is gone - God It self eradicated it, and preserved the honor of His servant. I have obtained all blessings from the Company of the Holy; I am a sacrifice to the True Guru. God has saved me, both here and hereafter. God has not taken my merits and demerits into account. Your Word is eternal, O Guru Nanak; You placed Your Hand of blessing upon my forehead. -----Guru Arjan, Raag Sorath, AGGS, Page, 620

    Cordially,
    Virinder S. Grewal
    Williamston, MI
     
  10. spnadmin

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    virinder ji

    What do mean when you say Banno Bir is "right." The shabads you cite are well-known. I am not making the connection somehow. You must mean that the Banno Bir is correct on some particular point.
    You have already stated that you believe that the Kartarpur Bir pre-dates the Banno Bir. Did I read your earlier post incorrectly? Thanks for persisting with me.

    Antonia
     
  11. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Guru Arjun Ji sahib had founded the Town of AMRITSAR....and had all sorts of artisans..etc settled there.
    Guru Arjun ji completed the ONE COPY of AAD GRANTH..in direct SUPERVISION of Bhai Gurdass JI..

    It begs the question..WHY would Guru Arjun ji let this ONE ORIGINAL COPY of this Mahaan Granth ( Huge Project taking such a long time and effort to produce)...be handed over to Bhai BANNO...to be taken to Lahoire for BINDING ?? No one can bind it in AMRITSAR ?? The Binders cannot be brought to Amrtisar to Bind it in Guru Jis Presence ?? Sounds a far fetched story. Further the Banno fellow has SO MUCH TIME..he can make another COPY....( Without permission of Guru Ji )..and then make ADDITIONS etc...and Guru Arjun Ji is NOT at all WORRIED baout his MONUMENTAL WORK getting waylaid...lost...tampered with....with all the ENEMIES and Saboteurs..chugleekhors hanging around...jealous of the Granth ??? Seems we are making Guru ji out to be a simpleton...just pass his granth on to banno..and let him do as he pleases....after displaying his SUPERB EDITORIAL PROWESS in making the Granth virtually impossible to alter/add to...How Far is lahore from Amritsar..WHY let Banno make a DETOUR...taking the valuable Garnth with him and disappear for SO LONG ?? all sounds far fetched... The GURU would have ensured the Granth was BOUND in His presence so no hanky panky...

    2. Where di GURU GOBIND SINGH JI send the Damdami Bir He had prepeared in Damdama Sahib in the DESERTS of Bhatinda....for BINDING ?? Was this also sent to Far away LAHORE ?? or DELHI ?? Tradition says FIVE COPIES of the Damdami Bir were prepared by Bhai Deep Singh Shaheed and sent to the various Takhats..Where did their BINDING take place and when ?? IF GGS could bind his own Granth...in a small village in Bhatinda.....why not Guru Arjun ji living in a town as big as Amrtisar ??
    Imho the Banno bir was a later copy....and additions made came to the attention of Guru Arjun ji who REJECTED IT as KHAREE BIR (salty/Sour due to unauthorised additions)
     
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  12. vsgrewal48895

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    Dear Tony Ji,

    If it is true (I was not there) that Banno existed, and if it is true that Guru Arjan Sahib gave him a copy for binding and he made a copy of the Bir. Then the Sabd in his copy about the "Mundan" ceremony is true, indicating that the Hindu ritruals were still being carried on.

    Banno Bir exists and why a dedicated Sikh will do add and complete the SAbd on Page 927.

    Was he capable of it?

    In my thought why this Sabd only ends in two lines and not in the name of Nanak?

    Is there adulteration in this Sabd.

    If so who did it?

    Pashaura being my friend defended that the Sabd is just two line and I am not convinced. Guru Arjan wrote in his autobiographical about 30 Sabds on his son.

    My question is why not this one, this is incomplete that it does not coincide with the present Sikh thought.

    I am not a researcher or a scholar and so far I am not convinced and am of the opinion that rituals did existed during the time of fists 5 Gurus. The next three Gurus did not compose any Sabds. Later the Bani of 9th Guru was added by 10th Master and it became the present AGGS at Talwandi Sabo.

    I am sorry I started this topic and so my further discussion ends with out any resolution of the question. Could it be English Rulars who did it?

    Cordially,

    Virinder
     
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  13. spnadmin

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    virinderji

    Thank you for persisting -- then you were responding to a very specific issue. i appreciate the clarification.

    :)
     
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  14. spnadmin

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    Virinder ji



    Another question for you if you would be patient with me. I have been doing some research on the current turmoil surrounding Dr. Pashaura in which he is said to have comitted research misconduct. It is said that he based his work on a fraudulent document. This has appeared in several articles. What document are people talking about? I can find not a single newsarticle that states what that documnet is. Without this information, the debate looks like a witch hunt.

    Thank you very much
    Antonia
     
    #13 spnadmin, Apr 1, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 2, 2009
  15. vsgrewal48895

    vsgrewal48895
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    Dear Tony Ji,

    It is about Manuscript 1245. Pashaura Singh's writings question the authenticity of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib and he accords importance to questionable manuscripts, one of which surfaced in 1987 and that he believes is a draft of the 1,430-page document compiled by Guru Arjan. Singh says the so-called 1245 manuscript, part of the rare book collection at Guru Nanak Dev University, Patiala, which includes sections that are blank and others that have been crossed out, showing evidence of having been edited.


    Cordially,


    Virinder
     
  16. spnadmin

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    AHA!! Thank you virinder ji!
     
  17. Archived_Member4

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    Looking through this thread so far no one has even questioned 'Dr'. Pashuara 'Singh' Creditability or Dr. Mcleods on this matter. A question, everyone that has commented on this thread should be asking is who gave Dr. Pashaura's PhD. Also it's wise to keep in mind that 'Dr'. Pashaura said Guru Arjan Dev ji distorted Guru Nanak Dev ji's Bani. Dr. pashaura 'Singh' Trustable! I don't think so, I wouldn't even leave my penny lying next to him.

    Here's another interesting fact, 'Dr'. Pashaura 'Singh' was a student of Dr. Mcleod and then became a real close associate.

    Dr. Mcleod has stated that Sikhism is a sect of Hinduism.
     
  18. Randip Singh

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    My question:

    Does it really matter if the Kartarpur Bir is not authentic?
     
  19. vsgrewal48895

    vsgrewal48895
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    Thanks all.
    Virinder
     
  20. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Not really...we already have nearly a million copies of the SGGS. By 1708..quite a few thousand were already in distribution....

    But there will always be some who want to.."seed doubts"...so that once Sikhs begin to have doubts about their GURU's "authenticity"....then to seed further doubts becomes real easy....like..is this "bani" authentic..should it be in the sggs....why not remove that bani..it looks.."not quite in line"...??? etc Many tried this approach....agaisnt Raagmala...bhagat bani..bhatt swaiyyas...these types will never stop....the Panch Khalsas Bhasaurri types tried the "rough shod way..simply remove what they dont like and print the new edited sggs ( Akal takhat excomunicated Teja Singh for that and banned his truncated "new sggs"... sans bhagat bani/Bhatt swaiyas and raagmala) others try the "Academic research" way..
    Dr Baldev Singh, Dr Mann etc have very ably answered the MCLeod Group. One should read BOTH Groups to arrive at a balanced view. ( Interestingly the SANT BABAS Group couldnt arrive at any written arguments ( as usual)...their approach is sabre rattling/noisy demonstrations/book burning ) During the Panch Khalsa times also they kept aloof....and left it to the likes of Dr Ganda Singh and others to defend Sikh History etc. through well written arguments.
     
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  21. vsgrewal48895

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    Dear All,

    The whole thread has been spinned from the original question and is on a slippery slop and criticising different persons/writers. This was not the attention.

    The question was why the sabd of Guru Arjan in Raag Ramkali does not end in the name of Nanak?

    Cordially,

    Virinder
     

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