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Correct Pronunciation of Waheguru

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by onspjo, Jan 10, 2011.

  1. onspjo

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    First of all, Guru Gobind Singh Sahibji de gurpurab di bahut bahut wadhai howe.

    Secondly, Please help me on this:
    What is the correct pronunciation of the word: Waheguru.

    In Gurmukhi, there is sihari(i) to the letter h in the word waheguru. Do we pronounce it as WAAH-E-GURU or WAAH-GURU without the long A sound.

    For example: In the word AAD, there is sihari to the letter d, but we don't pronounce it as AAD-E. Similarly, In Sat Shri Akal, There is Sihari to the letter t, and we say it SAT not SAT-E.

    My thinking is that there is a pause and stress to the letter where there is Sihari to the letter and not the E(long a) sound.

    Thanks.
     

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  3. spnadmin

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    My understanding is the sihari is pronounced

    http://gurmatbibek.com/forum/read.php?3,2634,2634
     
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  4. Ishna

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    So... are there any instances where one would NOT pronounce the sihari or unkar?

    For example, should I be saying the vowles in brackets (which I don't normally say) or not?

    Ek Oankar Sat(i) Nam(u) .. Purak(u), etc?

    Sorry for the basic question and thanks in advance for any information.

    Ishna
     
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  5. findingmyway

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    Ishna ji,
    As per my understanding the general rule is that if the sihari or aunkar come at the end, they are not pronounced but are there for grammatical purposes otherwise they are pronounced.
     
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  6. spnadmin

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    That is a good question. I always pronounce them. Always thought they were in brackets because they fell into the class of vowels that are dependent vowels, and are diacritical marks that are voiced/written according to rules for combining them with other vowels and consonants. E.G., there is no actual letter for "ey" and the sihari when placed gives that sound.

    There are 2 classes of vowels

    Independent: Ura (ੳ), Aira (ਅ) and Iri (ੲ).

    Dependent: These are combined with independent vowels and with consonants and are voiced. I am trying to put a chart up to show them. Sounds they make are in the far right column of the chart.
     

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  7. spnadmin

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    findingmyway ji

    Actually I think this is the issue being raised by Prakash S. Baggu - as to whether to voice them at the end of words or not. I hope he comes online to clarify his point.

    In Kartar Purakh(u) I do pronounce the (u) as "uh" at the end. Is that incorrect? LOL I am going to have to listen to rajkaregakhalsa now to satisfy my curiosity. Hate that.
     
  8. spnadmin

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    I am hearing them pronounced. But ...I could also be misunderstanding the audio file. The first frame has the mool mantar. Right above there is a player to listen to the pronunciation. Hope to figure this out because it is the kind of thing that makes me obsessive.

    http://www.rajkaregakhalsa.net/JapjiSahibji.htm
     

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  9. BhagatSingh

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    I always though the sihari and oankar were to "slant" the letter towards the vowels, rather than saying the vowel strongly. Its supposed to be subtle. I would definitely not say wa-hey-guru nor would i say wah-guru but somewhere in the middle.

    You ALWAYS pronounce the siharis, etc.
    EDIT: when saying purakh(u) you do say the 'kh' with a (uh)
    In case, of mat(i), you say the 't' with a (eh)

    get it?
     
  10. spnadmin

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    I agree - or at least that has been my own understanding, Bhagat ji. It is subtle but you can still hear it. Good example would be ਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ prasaad(i) which would sound prasaadih with not a lot of emphasis on the "ih." Anyway that is what I am hearing in the gurbani file.
     
  11. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Those who can..pls read Gurbani Viakaran by Prof Sahib Singh ...the very same Prof who wrote the SGGS Darpan..THE most established and quoted and relied upon exposition of SGGS.

    1. First person to assert that Gurbani has to have GRAMMAR and RULES..and then PROVE it by writing those Grammar Rules with varied EXAMPLES from GURBANI. Same words cna be Nouns, Proper Nouns, Verbs, Adjectives etc...the DISTINTION is made via the Markers..siharee and aunkar.

    Examples:
    Ak(i)l...this is a FEMALE NOUN.(FARSEE PERSIAN WORD)..used in Bhagat Kabir jiPanna 333.. also at panna 1186 Maroo sohilleh ( ak - siharee- l....)
    Akl...ADJECTIVE... to describe ONE who...NEVER DIES..BEYOND Kal (SANSKRIT WORD)
    Akl ( AKL) kala bharpoor rahia...

    Now these are IDENTICAL WORDS..having the three letters A < K> L...but one has SIHAREE before the < L > and the other has NONE !! Meanings radically different.
    2. second Example"
    A(i)bgt..A - SIHAREE BGT..meaning the CREATOR
    ABGT (u)....meaning ONE who HAS NOT YET BEEN MUKT..not yet achieved UNION with the A(i)BGT !! This is an ADJECTIVE.
    A(i)VG(i)T...is a NOUN and its meaning is TERRIBLE CONDITION and opposite of G(i)T

    3. Very common word..NOUN..FEMALE...
    Sas(u)..sas(u)......Mother in law....
    Sas...........BREATH....NOUN..MALE..VERB and SINGULAR
    Sa(i)s.....breath...singular...active verb...Male
    Sas.....used as messag
    e addressed/explanation...

    4. The popular word Har..
    HR...everyone..adjective..hr aadmi..every man..
    H(i)r Creator - noun
    Hr(u) is VERB, Future Tense, Pronoun and Singular...

    Now to the PRONOUNCERS...a long time ago..BEFORE Prof Sahib Singhs book on Gurbani Grammar came along and .."DEFLATED THEIR TYRES"...in a manner of speaking....these PRONOUNCING LOBBY ( same saadh lobby that is pro DG, pro Bikrimi Calendar, pro everything backward and anti SGPC, Akal takhat, Pad chhed birs, Mool Mnatar up to Gurparsaad etc etc - that is Before the 1980's - after the Wipe out of the Kharrkoos and proliferation of he derawaad and sadhs..the sgpc takhats etc are all under their control..so now they dont oppose those...just DONT FOLLOW the SRM etc which they are waiting to RUBBISH slowly as they ahve managed to do with the Nankshahi Calendar.)...........Sorry to digress..long Ago..these Pronouncers used to take LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOng breaths on all siharees and aunkarrs ...they would pronounce the SHAH(u) as SHAHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
    Then Prof sahib Singh ji cmae along...discovered the UNIQUE RULES used in GURBANI..debunked all the UTTERLY MEANINGLES...shahoooooooooooooos.....and published his Darpan.....the saadhs had NO ANSWER except to RETREAT..but not GIVE UP. So they "pronounce"...the siharees and aunkarrs..but with soft stance....
    But the FACT remains that the Siharee and aunkarrs as END Markers are GRAMMAR INDICATORS ONLY. SHAH is an Ordinary Moneylender/Rich man....SHAH(u) is THE ONE AND ONLY MONEYLENDER ABOVE ALL....the GREATEST SHAH. To pronounce it as Shahooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooois as meaningless as it is RIDICULOUS...But that doesnt stop the pronouncers..just attend any Paath da Bhog being read by one such person and enjoy his ...Sir shahhan de Shahoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo to the fullest.

    No offense meant or taken....
    Languages have enriched GURBANI....and if a word is from Farsee it will have a different meaning gender etc from same word taken from sanskrit. Both will have to follow their original grammars. ( Sikh SEWAKS...in English is perfectly acceptable...BUT in Punjabi usage the Plural word SEWAKS ..is rubbish..because in Punjabi sewak is singular and the plural is made NOT by adding an S but via CONTEXT...so a Sign in Punjabi written as Sikh sewaks is not correct !! Thus Gurbani also has its unique Grammar as it is a Language...its got a SCRIPT..its WRITTEN with INK and on Paper etc etc...being a DIVINE THING has got nothing to do with these restraints....otherwise how else would humans get the divine message ?? telephatically ?? or whisper in the ear as in RS Beas ??

    Unfortunately this book hasnt been translated ( I wonder if its possible to explain the Grammar of one language in another anyway ??)
     
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  12. Ambarsaria

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    Gyani Jarnail Singh ji, your comment if please as my father also used to speak so highly of one and only Professor Sahib Singh ji. Probably one of the best scholars if not the best.

    Is the Gurbani Viakaran by Prof Sahib Singh ji available in soft copy.

    Thank you and I like your Beas comment too. Did you ever stay there in the NRI wing versus the local wing. I never visited nor wish to visit the place but people say these are quite different (almost like $$ versus local rupees peacesign).

    Sat Sri Akal.
     
  13. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Parsa(id)...the I siharee stanhds for..BY THE.....Satgur Parsad...is not just two words..satgur + Parsad..BUT has a Meaning...( By the ) Grace of the Guru !! The siharee is a Grammar Marker not a pronounciation indicator
    These are what is called Cases in Grammar terminology...Nominative Case...Nan(i)k
    Vocative Case..Nank ( normally spelt nanak which is WRONG as there is NO "Kanna" before the last K..in Punjabi its just N+kanna+n +k hence the additonal kanna added to the second "n" is superflous ) Addressed to Nanak.. also written as Nanaka..and Nanak(u) is Noun...

    Also Passive Actiev Voice..and pronouns adjectives etc etc..are all parts of grammar and all are used in Gurbani. Only a well versed linguist.grammatist can be fluent in this.Its not an easy task...especially as Paath was taught by ROTE in most Taksals and religious schools...one just repeats after the mahapurash who spent his life repeating after the earlier mahapurash. ...now a days even that is lacking...as one who has just completed one paath is deputed to begin teaching others..and so on..
     
  14. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Ambarsariah Ji, Gurfateh.

    YES JI..Prof sahib Singh Ji has doen a Monumental seva of the Guru Khalsa Panth with hsi Grammar based Guru Granth darpan in 10 Volumes. Its the Best katah so far.

    I have no idea IF the Gurbani Viakran is available in Soft copy. I have 2 copies . The Hard Copy just published is avilable form Singh bros at their new shop in Industrial Focal Point Amrtisar...a little bit further from the darbar sahib than their old shop. The New edition is better paper. I have 2 just to make it convneient so I have a copy handy downstairs in my study room/Computer Table ...and upstairs in my bedroom/computer table.

    2. The Beas Connection..Ha Ha..they have been trying to "recruit" me for past 20 years... have sent personal driver and car to pick me up from New delhi Airport every year...I use that to go to Darbar Sahib !!.FOC .and always politely declined..a detour to BEAS.....but in 2006 did succumb to a viisit (Day visit only)..and I was shown around the entire Complex..langgars and all...and YES its superlative service and very well organised..and USD/British Pounds/Euros compared to Indian Rupees !! Thats becasue they make millions. But the Teaching failed to IMPRESS ME...and I said so straight away...still the car and driver was waiting as usual in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010...so i guess they havent lost hope yet....and the Parcels of sawan singhs books charan singhs books etc continue to arrive FREE at my address without fail and i send them to the Recycling Centre and pocket the fee !!( tax FREE )..But i love their perseverence..IF only the SGPC had even 0.0000000000000000000000001$ of THAT perseverence..we would have Amrtidharees all over the Punjab/World in great numbers...:eek:rangesingh:gingerteakaur
     
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  15. spnadmin

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    Gyani ji

    So back to sihari and aunkar: The Damdami Taksal pronunciation would then be incorrect? I am reading you? The rajakaregahalsa sound clips do employ Demadami recitation and are all recorded using voiced pronunciation of sihari and aunkar.

    I am however very grateful for your essay because you have mentioned this before, but not in such detail.
     
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  16. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Yes JIOS..the DT Pronounciation of Siharees and Aunkars is Ultra Vires the ....whatever..because these are Grammar Markers and not meant to be pronounced. They cannot be considered "un-necessary" as well becasue they are just as vital as commas and full stops...and we DONT pronounce commas and full stops. Luckily these guys dont pronounce the Page Numbers too as there are 1430 of them....

    Long ago before the advent of the Internet and when they had Morse Code/and Telegraph...they used to PRONOUNCE COMMAS and FULL STOPS and these were written out as WORDS. Eg. Come Home . (STOP) Dont leave your bags, (COMMA) your tennis rackets behind. STOP. I used to get such Telegraphs when away from home. !!

    The Grammar thingy is very complicated..even with a Bachelors Degree in English and another in Linguistics..I still have to refr to a Grammar handbook for examples of certain types of Grammar...and the Gurbani one is even tougher as so many languages are involved..thousands of words different forms etc. spellings, gender indicators, verbs, adjectives, nouns, etc etc and even the Punjabi CHANGES becasue from Farid to Guru Teg bahadur ji time lapse of 3 centuries passes and area is so large.
     
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  17. findingmyway

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    Gyani ji,
    Is this the book you are talking about?
    Prof. Sahib Singh - Gurbani Vyakarn (Gurbani Grammar)

    This seems to be a nice English introduction
    http://singhsabhabrisbane.com/gurbanigrammer.html

    This is an interesting essay on the subject of grammar
    http://sikhinstitute.org/july_2008/5-inderjit singh.pdf

    Going back to pronunciation of Waheguru, the way I was always taught is sihari is a short i sound and bihari a long ee sound so ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ should really be Wahiguroo. We also have to differentiate between onkar and dulankar-the former is a short sound whilst the latter is a long sound.
    Jasleen
     
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  18. spnadmin

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    Gyani ji

    Thanks for clearing that up because there are 2 major sources for learning Nit Nem on the Internet: BaniPro (ProBani?)i and the Raj Karega Khalsa files that I mentioned. Both of them pronounce the sihari and aunkar at the end of a word consistently.

    Your reply should be kept handy and should be a constant reference for members who have these questions.

    You have me nonethless :rofl: with your answer.

    p/s when the thread first began I had no idea it would turn out to be so interesting.
     
  19. hpannu

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    findingmyway ji - for the most what you say is true ? but there are exceptions ........

    I have always been told that ਹ (h) ਨੂੰ ਮਾਤਰਾ ਲਗੀ ਹੋਈ pronounce ਕਰਣੀ ਹੈ । (for letter H we have to sound the ਿ ੀ ੁ ੂ ਾ ੋ ੌ ੇ ੈ ......)

    for other letters there are exceptions. for example - ਮਾਇ, ਸੋਇ, ਜੀਉ, ਦੁਇ, ਤਉ, ਕਾਇ, ਕਉ, ਲੁਡਾਇ, ਮਾਰਉ, ਗਵਾਇ, ਥਾਇ .........etc in the given examples i pronounce the sihari ਿ and onkar ੁ the sound is very little but is there ...

    ਭੁਲ ਚੁਕ ਮਾਫ ਕਰਣਾ ਜੀ !
     
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  20. hpannu

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    ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕਾ ਖਾਲਸਾ
    ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕਿ ਫਤਿਹ ॥

    To make it easier for users i have taken the following examples from Prof. Sahib Singh book ਗੁਰਬਾਣੀ ਵਿਆਕਰਣ -
    ਮਤੁ , ਮਤ , ਮਤਿ
    ਮਤੁ - (ਨਾਂਵ- noun , ਇਕ-ਵਚਨ - Singular )
    ਮਤ - ( 'ਮਤੁ' ਦਾ ਬਹੁ-ਵਚਨ - plural of ਮਤੁ)
    ਮਤਿ - (ਨਾਂਵ-noun , ਇਸਤਰੀ ਲਿੰਗ- feminine)
    ************************************
    ਪਤਿ, ਪਤੁ, ਪਤ
    ਪਤਿ - (ਪੁਲਿੰਗ-masculine ex- ਖਸਮ) , (ਇਸਤਰੀ ਲਿੰਗ-feminine ex -ਇੱਜਤ)
    ਪਤੁ - (ਪੁਲਿੰਗ-masculine , ਇਕ-ਵਚਨ-singular)
    ਪਤ - (ਪੁਲਿੰਗ -masculine , ਬਹੁ-ਵਚਨ - plural)
    ********************************

    Gyani Ji on this forum has mentioned the difficulties or hardship in understanding the grammar when there are multiple languages in use over a given period of time. I have not studied Punjabi in School and learning by practice. I have the book mentioned above but it's not easy and cannot be done overnight. It's takes a life time of experience like Gyani Ji to get a grasp or hope so for it.

    My personal experience is the more you ask and read Gurbani - you are bound to get different answers from different people depending on who you are talking to? SIKH PANTH has not come to terms of correct ucharan (pronounciation) of GURBANI. I have asked this question to Jathedar of AKAL TAKHT myself ? and from the way SIKH PANTH is heading it's not going to be easy task to come to a consensus on this .....

    Following the basic rules of Gurbani reading - I am not advocating Prof Sahib Singh or any other organisation We as SIKHS should humbly make an attempt to learn GURBANI and try to understand it to the best of our means. We don't have to argue on who's right and who's wrong ? and I certainly don't want to ramble on this forum.

    For readers - even though some of the words like in above examples are pronounced the same, they are in some cases addressed as singular, plural and different tenses of grammar............

    Bhul Chuk Maaf Karna Ji !
     
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  21. onspjo

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    Thanks to all for sharing their knowledge and views.
    So two books can be referred for correct pronunciation:

    "GURBANI DI BHASHA TE VYAKARAN" by Dr. Harkirat Singh jee Gurmukhi linguistics and Gurbani Bhasha scholars from Punjabi university----------as suggested by 'SPNadmin'

    "Gurbani Viakaran" by Prof Sahib Singh ----------as suggested by 'Gyani Jarnail Singh'

    I totally agree that the use of sihari or ounkarh changes the meaning of the base word.
    I want to believe that it has to be pronounced too. Because if you are reading gurbani, you can see the word and understand the meaning but if you are only hearing it and the sihari/ounkar before last letter is not pronounced, how would the listener understand the correct meaning?
    So, I believe, it has to be pronounced. The correct pronunciation is very important. I heard a story where a person reading gurbani in front of Guru Gobind Singh Sahibji got a punishment for not pronouncing the word correctly.

    The word Ki(K with sihari) is pronounced as ki(k with short i). There is no other pronunciation to it. So now one has to look at the grammatical rules( at the time of writing) for words with single letter or words with many letters.

    Like many commented that, it is subtle. Not a very long trailing sound at the end of it but still there to clearly differentiate between words with or without sihari/ounkarh.

    THerefore, from all the posts, I'd like to believe that Waheguru sound is NOT Wah-Long a- Guru sound. If this was the case, the h should have lav not sihari.
    But short i sound. That the sihari stands for.
     
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