Guru Nanak In Arab | Sikh Philosophy Network
  • Welcome to all New Sikh Philosophy Network Forums!
    Explore Sikh Sikhi Sikhism...
    Sign up Log in

Guru Nanak In Arab

Currently reading:
Guru Nanak In Arab

dalvindersingh grewal

Jan 3, 2010

Dr. Dalvinder Singh Grewal


Saudi Arabia is an Arab state in Western Asia constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula. Approximately 2.15 million km2 in area, Saudi Arabia is geographically the fifth-largest state in Asia and second-largest state in the Arab world (after Algeria). It is bordered by Jordan and Iraq to the north, Kuwait to the northeast, Qatar, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates to the east, Oman to the southeast, and Yemen to the south. It is the only nation with both a Red Sea coast and a Persian Gulf coast, and most of its internal terrain consists of an arid inhospitable desert or barren landforms. Its capital is at Riyadh.

The area of modern-day Saudi Arabia formerly consisted of four distinct regions: Hejaz, Najd, and parts of Eastern Arabia (Al-Ahsa) and Southern Arabia (‘Asir’).[1] The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was founded in 1932 by Ibn Saud. He united the four regions into a single state through a series of conquests beginning in 1902 with the capture of Riyadh, the ancestral home of his family, the House of Saud. The country has since been an absolute monarchy, effectively a hereditary dictatorship governed along Islamic lines. The ultra-conservative Wahabism religious movement within Sunni Islam has been called "the predominant feature of Saudi culture", with its global spreading largely financed by the oil and gas trade. [2][3] Saudi Arabia is sometimes called "the Land of the Two Holy Mosques" in reference to Al-Masjid al-Harem (in Mecca), and Al-Masjid an-Nabawi (in Medina), the two holiest places in Islam. The Kingdom has a total population of 28.7 million, of which 20 million are Saudi nationals and 8 million are foreigners. [4][5][6]

Petroleum was discovered in 1938 followed up by several other finds in the Shia-majority Eastern Province.[7] Saudi Arabia has since become the world's largest oil producer and exporter, controlling the world's second-largest oil reserves, and the sixth largest gas reserves. [8] The kingdom is categorized as a World Bank high-income economy with a high Human Development Index, [9] and is the only Arab country to be part of the G-20 major economies. [10][11]


Clockwise from top left: Minarets, Kaaba, Mecca skyline, Abraj al-Bait, and Mina.

In pre-Islamic times, apart from a small number of urban trading settlements (such as Mecca and Medina), most of what was to become Saudi Arabia was populated by nomadic tribal societies in the inhospitable desert. [12] The Islamic Prophet Muhammad was born in Mecca in about 571 A.D. In the early 7th century, Muhammad united the various tribes of the peninsula and created a single Islamic religious polity. Following his death in 632, his followers rapidly expanded the territory under Muslim rule beyond Arabia, conquering huge swathes of territory in a matter of decades. In so doing, Arabia soon became a politically peripheral region of the Muslim world as the focus shifted to the more developed conquered lands. [13] From the 10th century to the early 20th century Mecca and Medina were under the control of a local Arab ruler known as the Sharif of Mecca, but at most times the Sharif owed allegiance to the ruler of one of the major Islamic empires based in Baghdad, Cairo or Istanbul. Most of the remainder of what became Saudi Arabia reverted to traditional tribal rule. [14][15]

In the 16th century, the Ottomans added the Red Sea and Persian Gulf coast (the Hejaz, Asir, and Al-Ahsa) to the Empire and claimed suzerainty over the interior. One reason was to thwart Portuguese to attack the Red Sea (hence the Hejaz) and the Indian Ocean. [16] Ottoman degree of control over these lands varied over the next four centuries with the fluctuating strength or weakness of the Empire's central authority. [16][17] The emergence of what was to become the Saudi royal family, known as the Al Saud, began in Nejd in central Arabia in 1744, when Muhammad Bin Saud, the founder of the dynasty, joined forces with the religious leader Muhammad bin Abd al-Wahhab, [18] founder of the Wahhabi movement, a strict puritanical form of Sunni Islam. [19] This alliance formed in the 18th century provided the ideological impetus to Saudi expansion and remains the basis of Saudi Arabian dynastic rule today. [20] The first "Saudi state" established in 1744 in the area around Riyadh, rapidly expanded and briefly controlled most of the present-day territory of Saudi Arabia, [21] but was destroyed by 1818 by the Ottoman viceroy of Egypt, Mohammed Ali Pasha.[22] Throughout the rest of the 19th century, the Al Saud contested control of the interior of what was to become Saudi Arabia with another Arabian ruling family, the Al Rashid. By 1891, the Al Rashid was victorious and the Al Saud was driven into exile in Kuwait. [14]

The oil industry comprises about 45% of Saudi Arabia's nominal gross domestic product, compared with 40% from the private sector. Saudi Arabia officially has about 260 billion barrels (4.1×1010 m3) of oil reserves, comprising about one-fifth of the world's proven total petroleum reserves. [23]

The population of Saudi Arabia as of July 2013 is estimated to be 26.9 million, including between 5.5 million. [24] The official language of Saudi Arabia is Arabic. Hejaz is the most populated region in Saudi Arabia [25] as it includes Mecca and Medina the most important religious centers of Islam. Jeddah is the most important port. Guru Nanak visited all these places around 1518 AD. Guru Nanak entered Saudi Arabia at Jeddah from Aden/Port of Sudan. Hejaz was then a protectorate of Ottoman King Selim I. it is mentioned in Sikh scriptures that Guru Nanak met Selim I during his travel to this area. [26]

There are five places connected with Guru Nanak in the Gulf region: 1. Aden 2. Jeddah 3. Mecca 4. Medina 5. Baghdad. All the places of his visit had buildings (makan) in the shape of mosques. All had golden domes and a platform inside. Except at Aden, all other places had a free kitchen by Shah Rum. The caretakers were duly paid. They wear a blue dress with shalwars up to just below the knees. [26] Guru Nanak visited Mecca in 1517-1518 AD after Aden and Jeddah.

Guru Nanak in Jeddah

Jeddah is a city in the Hijaz Tihamah region on the coast of the Red Sea and is the major urban center of western Saudi Arabia. It is the largest city in Mecca Province, the largest seaport on the Red Sea, and the second-largest city in Saudi Arabia after the capital city, Riyadh. With a population currently at 3.4 million people, Jeddah is an important commercial hub in Saudi Arabia.

Jeddah is the principal gateway to Mecca, Islam’s holiest city, which able-bodied Muslims are required to visit at least once in their lifetime and also to Medina, the second holiest place in Islam.

Economically, Jeddah is focusing on further developing capital investment in scientific and engineering leadership within Saudi Arabia and the Middle East. [27] Jeddah was independently ranked fourth in the Africa-Mid-East region in terms of innovation in 2009 in the Innovation Cities Index. [28] Given the city's close proximity to the Red Sea, fishing and seafood dominate the food culture unlike other parts of the country. The city has been labeled as "different" by the majority of Saudis in an effort to promote tourism in the city that had been previously perceived as "most open" city in Saudi Arabia.

Commonly believed its name was derived from Jaddah, the Arabic word for "grandmother". According to eastern folk belief, the tomb of Eve (21029’31”N 39011’24”E) considered the grandmother of humanity, is located in Jeddah. [29] The tomb was sealed with concrete by religious authorities in 1975 due to some Muslims praying at the site. Ibn Battuta (1304–1368) visited Jeddah during his world trip. He wrote the name of the city in his diary as "Jiddah". [30] On official Saudi maps and documents, the city name is transcribed "Jeddah", which is now the prevailing usage.

Jeddah first achieved prominence around 647 AD, when the third Muslim Caliph, Uthman Ibn Affan turned it into a port making it the port of Mecca.[11] In 703 AD Jeddah was briefly occupied by pirates from the Kingdom of Axum. [31] Jeddah has been established as the main city of the historic Hijaz province and a historic port for pilgrims arriving by sea to perform their Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca.

The Ottoman admiral Selman I defended Jeddah against a Portuguese attack in 1517. In 1517, the Ottoman Turks conquered the Mamluk Sultanate in Egypt and Syria, during the reign of Selim I. [32] As territories of the Mamluk Sultanate, the Hijaz, including Jeddah and the holy city of Mecca, passed into Ottoman possession. The Ottomans rebuilt the weak walls of Jeddah in 1525 following their victory in the Red Sea. The new Turkish wall included six watchtowers and six city gates, constructed to defend against the Portuguese attack. Of the six gates, the Gate of Mecca was the eastern gate and Gate of Medina facing north. [33]

Having stayed at Aden for three days Guru Nanak went to Jeddah Sharif, and sat near Eve’s grave’.[70] Muslims believe that upon expulsion from heaven, Adam landed in Sri Lanka and Eve in Jeddah. Jeddah is named after the Arabic word “Jaddah’ meaning “grandmother” of all mankind.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s temple (makan) is towards the east of the grave of Mother Eve on the bank of the river [34] In these countries where ever Guruji’s makan is there, it is called Nanak Qalander or Wali Hindu daira. It is so because in whatever this country Guruji went he wore the local dress and preached in the local language. In Arab countries he had a stick in his hand, book under his armpit and a blue coloured dress, a seli cap covering his head etc. (35) Guru Nanak landed at Jeddah by ship in or around 1918 A.D. and a Sikh shrine commemorates his visit. The shrine is located towards the east of the sepulcher of Mother Eve. It is styled as a mosque and is known as a house (makan) of Nanak Pir or Wali Hind. [26]

On the route to Mecca

Twenty-two miles from Jeddah, Guru Nanak started walking in front of Shah Saraf’s camel. Shah Saraf was leading a group of Hajj pilgrims from Panipat (India). He was a spiritual god-loving person. In Taajudin Naqshbandi’s account [71], Shah Saraf asked, “Who is walking in the front?” Tajudeen documented 62 questions and responses. Shah Saraf was pleased and satisfied with this exchange. He asked, “Oh Fakir, where are you heading?” “To Mecca Sharif” was the Guru’s response. Saraf’s disciples said, “You are a Hindu; you will not be allowed in Mecca,” and refused to include Nanak in the caravan. Guru Nanak distanced himself from the caravan and continued. When Shah Saraf’s group reached Mecca, they found that Nanak Shah was already there. They heard about Nanak’s fame in Mecca and were amazed to find out that he had been there for five months. In Jeddah, there is an important commemorative place called ‘Nanak Shah Kalandar’ Jeddah to Mecca was then 4 destinations. Guru Nanak started from Jeddah for Mecca on foot. Though Mardana and Muhammad Gaus Sankhatre walla, the two Muslims were with him, even then a fakir named Shah Sharaf asked questioned to test his faith through questions in Arabic: [36]

Q1. Avl(i) faqiri chhesat aakhifri cheesat. (What type of sainthood should be adapted to start with and which type of sainthood should be to end with?)

Ans 1: avl(i) faqiri fanah ast, aakhar faqiri baka ast. (The mendicant should start with considering the universe as perishable, and it should end with merge into God.)

Q2. What is the first stage for a mendicant?

Answer 2: Perishable nature of the universe.

Q3. What is the end approach of mendicant?

Answer 3: Salvation through a merger into him.

Q4. What is the key to it?

Answer 4: Practice

Q5. How do we bind ourselves to practice?

Ans5: Meditation on Divine Name

Q6. What is the final dwelling point?

Ans 6: Politeness.

Q7. How to store it in mind?

Ans 7: Through the company of the holy.

Q8. Where from to get the light?

Ans: From Knowledge

Q9. How can it be spread?

Ans: With sensibility and experience.

Q10. Where lies the pleasure?

Ans 10: Meeting Him.

Q11. What food should one have?

Ans11. Patience

Q13. What should one get attached to?

Ans 12: Truth

Q14: How should one live?

Ans 14: Living as if dead (from the worldly attachments.

Q15. What should one inhale?

Ans 15: Committed senses: committed position.

Q16. What is the ultimate achievement?

Ans 16: Merger in Him.

Q17. What is the cleaner for?

Ans 17: For cleanliness.

Q18. What cap one wear?

Ans 18: Ever happiness in His will.

Q19. Where should the mind settle?

Ans 19. In the house where there are no worries and care.

Q 20. What words should one speak?

Ans: Truth and truth alone.

Q21: What will ferry one across?

Ans 21: Earned good qualities.

Q22. What is undergarment to wear for control?

Ans 22: Self-control.

Q23. Where lies the salvation?

Ans 23: In a total commitment to Him.

Q 24: What is life?

Ans 24: Living according to His will.

Q25.What is the limitation of it?

Ans 25: Attachment to the world.

Q 26: What should be the position for meditation?

Ans 26: Staying still like an iron keg.

Q27: How far can one travel?

Ans 27: Till the breath (air) permits. [36]

Shah Sharaf put many questions which the guru replied to his entire satisfaction. Shah Sharaf finally questioned the use of various dress items. Guru Nanak replied: “Cap says: Cutting hair at childhood is to make him religious. It is to make him without fear and enmity. If it does not do so; then he must wear a turban and keep hair. Wearing the dress removed from the dead body +tells him that I am the dress of the dead; you must remain like the dead. A dead man had no desires or ego before or after. The ground-cleaner says that I clean the earth: catch me only if you want to clean vices from within, otherwise, do not. The smoke says: The way I burn all wastages and refuse into smoke you must burn all vices and desires and turn them into smoke and make your mind clean otherwise do not. The hanging cloth bag says that I collect everything but do not keep anything for self you must act accordingly otherwise do not have me. Similarly, the Guru explained the purpose of rebec, stick, undergarment, wooden footwear and even the ash and asked him that a saint should have all these qualities of goodness otherwise he should not have them and should remain a family man, work hard, share among others and go to heaven. [36]

The accompanying Hajjis listened to the question-answer session intently. All of them realized that Guru Nanak was a Hindu. They said: “The Arabic religion persons will kill you. They will trouble us as well. Please separate from us.” Baba said, “You are not the true Hajjis. You only reap the benefit of Hajj if you spread benediction, love, compassion, service, and alms. If you go on having jokes, laughter, teasing and creating differences, you do not become true Hajjis. Saying this Babaji recited Hazarnama. [37] get his blessings. Sincerity is friendliness; insincerity is against religion. Pride is prejudiced; backbiting is like blackening one’s own face; an honest person is free of all encumbrances, dishonesty causes bad blood. Hatred is hellish; Truth is heavenly. An egoistic person is lost in the world; a person without an ego is like a saint. Knowledge creates humility: attention takes one to heights. Saintliness is contentedness. Discontentment is hypocrisy. Oppression is an atrocity; nonuse of force brings purity. Prayer is capital; the curse is a calamity. Justice is clean; theft is greed; the miracle is of nature above. The true path is a guru-peer (guide); the lost path is for those who do not have true guidance (True Guru). Who feels pains of other is a God’s man; who do not feel other’s pain is like a butcher. God gives employment to all; a sword is for the brave; justice is for the kings. The person with these good qualities is the intelligent one.

Having heard this they (hajjis) said, “We are afraid of godliness. They are ritualistic; not the researchers.” Baba moved separate from them and reached Mecca before them. [38]

Guru Nanak in Mecca

Mecca[3] or Makkah (Arabic) (coordinates: 21025’N 39049’ E) is a city in the Hejaz in Saudi Arabia.[4] It is the capital of that kingdom's Makkah Region. The city is located 70 km (43 mi) inland from Jeddah in a narrow valley at a height of 277 m (909 ft) above sea level. Its resident population in 2012 was roughly 2 million, although visitors more than triple this number every year during the hajj ("pilgrimage") period held in the twelfth Muslim lunar month of Dhu al-Hijjah.

The Masjid al-Haram panorama: The main site for Hajj

Mecca is the birthplace of Muhammad and the site of Muhammad’s first revelation of the Quran (specifically, a cave 3 km from Mecca, [39[40] Mecca is regarded as the holiest city in Islam [41] and a pilgrimage to it known as the Hajj is obligatory for all able Muslims. Mecca is home to the Kaaba, by majority description Islam's holiest site, as well as being the direction of Muslim prayer. Mecca was long ruled by Muhammad’s descendants, the Sharifs, acting either as independent rulers or as vassals to larger polities. It was conquered by Ibn Saud in 1925. During this expansion, Mecca has lost some historical structures and archaeological sites, such as the Ajyad Fortress.[42] Today, more than 15 million Muslims visit Mecca annually, including several million during the few days of the Hajj. [43] As a result, Mecca has become one of the most cosmopolitan and diverse cities in the Muslim world [44] despite the fact that non-Muslims are prohibited from entering the city. [45][46]

"Mecca" is the familiar form of the English transliteration for the Arabic name of the city, although the official transliteration used by the Saudi government in the 1980s is Makkah, which is closer to the Arabic pronunciation [47][48] but is not universally known or used worldwide. [47] The word "Mecca" in English has come to be used to refer to any place that draws large numbers of people, and because of this many Muslims regard the use of this spelling for the city as offensive. [47] The ancient or early name for the site of Mecca is Bakkah (also transliterated Baca, Baka, Bakah, Bakka, Becca, Bekka, etc.), [49][50][51] an Arabic language word, its etymology [52] and includes the Kaaba. [53]

Mecca is at an elevation of 277 m (909 ft) above sea level, and approximately 80 km (50 mi) inland from the Red Sea. [54] Central Mecca lies in a corridor between mountains, which is often called the "Hollow of Mecca." The area contains the valley of Al Taneem, the Valley of Bakkah and the valley of Abqar. [54][55] This mountainous location has defined the contemporary expansion of the city. The city centers on the Masjid al-Haram area and has an elevation lower than most of the city. The area around the mosque comprises the old city. The main avenues are Al-Mudda'ah and Sūq al-Layl to the north of the mosque, and As-Sūg Assaghīr to the south. As the Saudis expanded the Grand Mosque in the center of the city, where there were once hundreds of houses there are now replaced with wide avenues and city squares. Traditional homes are built of local rock and are generally two to three stories. The total area of Mecca today stands over 1,200 km2 (460 sq mi). [56]

Mecca houses the Masjid al-Haram, the largest mosque in the world. The mosque surrounds the Kaaba, which Muslims turn towards while offering daily prayer. This mosque is also commonly known as the Haram or Grand Mosque. [57] Hira is a cave near Mecca, on the mountain named Jabal Al-Noor in the Tihamah region of present-day Saudi Arabia. It is notable for being the location where Muhammad received his first revelation from God through the angel Gabriel to Christians. [58]59]

According to Islamic tradition, the history of Mecca goes back to Abraham (Ibrahim), who built the Kaaba with the help of his elder son Ismael in around 2000 BCE when the inhabitants of the site then known as Bakkah had fallen away from the original monotheism of Abraham. [58] [48] The Old Testament chapter Psalm 84:3–6, and a mention of a pilgrimage at the Valley of Baca, Muslims see as referring to the mentioning of Mecca as Bakkah in Qur'an Surah 3:96. In the 5th century, the Quraysh took control of Mecca and became skilled merchants and traders. In the 6th century, they joined the lucrative spice trade as well, since battles in other parts of the world were causing trade routes to divert from the dangerous sea routes to the more secure overland routes. [59]

Ibrahim was a Quresh; a carpenter by trade. His father Ajar used to make and sell stone idols. Ibrahim came into the company of saints and opposed idol worship. One night he broke all the idols in the temple and left his axe on the shoulder of the largest idol and left. Next day priest was astonished seeing this state of idols and enquired as to who had done that. Ibrahim said, “They must have fought themselves. The largest idol must have broken them in anger”. The people present said, “They are just the idols. They cannot fight or break anything.” Ibrahim said, “If they cannot do anything; why do we need them for? Worship the true God who creates and cares for the entire world and destroys unwanted”. Many left idol worship and started following him. Soon Ibrahim became famous as a prophet. Kaaba is now in this house where Ibrahim used to meditate. People came; bowed toward him from outside and went. After his death, the same practice has continued. This house (makan) is 12 yards long 10 yards in breadth on three pillars. There are two rooms one for Mother Eve and other for Baba Adam. There is only one gate from the east. To the right of the door is a 4’ high black stone known as ‘sang aswad’, adjoining to it is 6’ high ‘sang Manat’. Both are protected by an iron ring around. The house, the rooms, and the stones are kept covered with cloth offered by King Room and are changed every year. Pieces of the removed cloth are taken by the Hajjis as a blessing, which they put on a dead body and removed before putting the dead into the grave. Likewise, Hindus too have been following the same tradition by taking the piece from the cloth removed at Jagan Nath temple. [59]

1. 1787 Ottoman Turkish map of the Masjid-al-Haram and related religious sites:

2. Jabal al-Noor where Muhammad received his first revelation of God

On the left of Kaaba is the well, known as ‘Abe Zamzam”. The followers of Muhammad say this about this well, “When the Ibrahim was young, there used to be less water in the area. His mother felt thirsty. Ibrahim rubbed the heel of his foot on the ground and made a small pit out of which appeared a spring which was converted into a well later. The water of this well is called, “Abe Zamzam”. Hajjis use this water as Hindus use Ganga water. [59]

On a hill named ‘Arnat’ 9 kos from the place of Hajj in Mecca, all Hajjis gather there a day before Id and watch towards the route to Rum (Turkey) and sham (Syria). Kazis from Turkey and Syria appear on camels with valuables pertaining to Prophet Muhammad. Watching them is known as Hajj. These Qazis go back on camels without getting down. There is a mosque on the hill. It is stated that on this hill Muhammad showed the Yehudis dividing moon into two parts. One piece went through the dress of the Prophet and went out through the gate of the mosque; the second part went out breaking through the wall creating a hole in the wall which these Hajjis have a sight. Hajjis start from Jeddah reciting aits from Quran; reach the area earmarked for their countries; pray (namaz) and go around Kaaba. They then have a sip from Abe Zamzam and kiss the wall of ‘sang Aswad’. Some even manage to enter Kaaba, but they are not allowed to look around and ask them to keep their heads down. They are then allowed to take the pillar in their arms and are sent out. Some are able to do quick prayer (namaz) inside. [59]

Muhammad was born in Mecca in 570 AD, [60[61] and thus Islam has been inextricably linked with it ever since. He was born in a minor faction, the Hashemites, of the ruling Quraysh tribe. Muhammad received divine revelations from God through the Archangel Gabriel in 610 AD in the nearby mountain cave of Hira on Jabal al-Noor. Due to persecution from the pagan tribes for 13 years, Muhammad emigrated in 622 AD with his companions, the Muhajirun to Yathrib (later called Medina). The conflict between the Quraysh and the Muslims, however, continued: The two fought in the Battle of Badr where the Muslims defeated the Quraysh outside Medina; while the Battle of Uhad ended indecisively. Overall Meccan efforts to annihilate Islam failed and proved to be costly and unsuccessful. During the Battle of the Trench in 627 AD, the combined armies of Arabia were unable to defeat Muhammad's forces. [60]

In 628 AD, Muhammad and his followers wanted to enter Mecca for pilgrimage but were blocked by the Quraysh. Subsequently, Muslims and Meccans entered into the Treaty of Hudaybiyyah whereby the Quraysh promised to cease fighting Muslims and promised that Muslims would be allowed into the city to perform the pilgrimage the following year. It was meant to be a ceasefire for 10 years. However, just two years later, the Quraysh violated the truce by slaughtering a group of Muslims and their allies. Muhammad and his companions, now 10,000 strong, marched into Mecca. However, instead of continuing their fight, the city of Mecca surrendered to Muhammad, who declared peace and amnesty for its inhabitants. The pagan imagery was destroyed by Muhammad's followers and the location Islamised and rededicated to the worship of God. Mecca was declared as the holiest site in Islam ordaining it as the center of Muslim pilgrimage, one of the faith's Five Pillars. Muhammad returned to Medina after assigning Akib ibn Usaid as governor of the city. His other activities in Arabia led to the unification of the peninsula. [61][62]

Muhammad died in 632 AD, but with the sense of unity that he had passed on to his Ummah (Islamic nation). Islam began a rapid expansion, and within the next few hundred years stretched from North Africa into Asia and parts of Europe. As the Islamic Empire grew, Mecca continued to attract pilgrims from all across the Muslim world and beyond, as Muslims came to perform the annual Hajj pilgrimage.

Mecca also attracted a year-round population of scholars, pious Muslims who wished to live close to the Kaaba, and local inhabitants who served the pilgrims. Due to the difficulty and expense of the Hajj, pilgrims arrived by boat in Jeddah, and came overland, or joined the annual caravans from Syria or Iraq. In 1517, the Sharif, Barakat bin Muhammed, the local ruler of Mecca acknowledged the supremacy of the Ottoman Caliph but retained a great degree of local autonomy. [63] Following the Battle of Mecca (1924), the Sharif of Mecca was overthrown by the Saud family, and Mecca was incorporated into Saudi Arabia. [64] Under Saudi rule, much of the historic city has been demolished as a result of new construction programs.

The Sharif of Mecca or Sharif of Hejaz was the title of the former governors of Hejaz and a traditional steward of the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. The term Sharif means noble in Arabic and indicates descent from Muhammad through his grandson al-Hassan ibn Ali. The Sharif was charged with protecting the cities and their environs and ensuring the safety of pilgrims performing the Hajj.

The office of the Sharifate of Mecca dates back to the late Abbasid era. Since 1201, the Sharifate was held by a member of the Hashim clan, not to be confused with the larger clan of Banu Hashim to which all Sharifs claim descent. Descendants of this family continued to hold the position until the Twentieth Century on behalf of various Muslim powers including the Ayyubids and the Mamelukes. In 1517, the Sharif acknowledged the supremacy of the Ottoman Caliph but maintained a great degree of local autonomy. During the Ottoman era, the Sharifate expanded its authority northwards to include Medina, and southwards to the frontiers of Asir, and regularly raided Nejd.

The Sharif of Mecca during the period of Guru Nanak’s travel to Mecca was Barkat II bin Muhammed (Barakat Efendi) (1497-1525).
The Hajj involves pilgrims visiting the Masjid al-Haram, but mainly camping and spending time in the plains of Mina and Arafah. The pilgrimage to Mecca attracts millions of Muslims from all over the world. There are two pilgrimages: the Hajj and the Umrah. The Hajj, the 'greater' pilgrimage is performed annually in Mecca and nearby sites. During the Hajj, several million people of varying nationalities worship in unison. As per a Muslim edict, every adult, healthy Muslim who has the financial and physical capacity to travel to Mecca and can make arrangements for the care of his/her dependents during the trip must perform the Hajj at least once in a lifetime. Umrah, the lesser pilgrimage, is not obligatory but is recommended in the Qur'an. [65] Often, they perform the Umrah, the lesser pilgrimage, while visiting the Masjid al-Haram.

Records of Guru Nanak Dev’s visit to Mecca are first found in Bhai Gurdas Vaar 1, Pauri 32. [66]


‘ Donning blue attire then Baba Nanak went to Mecca. He held the staff in his hand, pressed a book under his armpit, caught hold of a metal pot and mattress. He sat in a mosque where the pilgrims (hajjis) had gathered. When Baba (Nanak) slept in the night with his legs towards the alcove of a mosque at Kaba, the qazi named Jivan kicked him and asked: “Who is this infidel enacting blasphemy?” “Why is this sinner is sleeping keeping his legs towards God?” Catching hold of the legs he moved his (Baba Nanak) legs and lo and behold the miracle, the whole of Mecca seemed to be revolving. All got surprised and they all bowed’. [66]

Giani Gian Singh mentions: “He slept at night in the western compound keeping his feet towards Mecca. Early morning the head of sweepers, Jiwan said to him angrily: “What type of senseless infidel you are, having your feet towards Kaaba?” Guru Nanak said, “Please move my feet to the direction where the God is not there.” As he moved Guru’s feet around, he felt Kaaba moving to the same direction. Guru Nanak said, “Jivan! God is everywhere.” This gave realization to Jivan of God’s existence all over. As the people gathered, he shouted “Kaaba is everywhere. God is everywhere.” Giani Gian Singh stresses the point that this may be a miracle like Muhammad’s breaking the moon in two pieces, Musa finding a path in the sea, Christ’s reviving the dead and reviving body parts, Krishna’s picking up Gowardhan, Ram’s floating the stones etc. Some other writers give examples of Bhagat Namdev, when recited Lord’s name and turned his face in any direction, the Deodi, entrance of temple turned towards that direction wherever he turned his face and quote p 1164 line 13 meaning As Naam Dev uttered the Glorious Praises of the Lord, the temple turned around to face the Lord’s humble devotee. [67]

Many Muslim brothers take offence to the reference that Jivan or Qazi Rukunudin saw the Kaaba move as he moved Guru Nanak’s feet to point them in a direction away from Kaaba. They claim that this could not have happened. In turn, some give following references in Islam which talk about the Kaaba moving.

1. Hazrat Iban writes in his book Fatuhat Makih that he saw the Kaaba rise to crush him when he thought inappropriate thoughts about the Kaaba during the Hajj [68] I may remind you that When Mohammad Sahib was proclaimed to be the last prophet, his wife Aisha protested and said to people, “Say that he is the ‘seal of prophets’ but do not say there is no prophet after him.”

2. Rabia, when passing through a forest on her way to the Hajj for the second time, saw the Kaaba coming towards her to welcome her. Rabia said, “I was hoping to see God. I have no need for God’s house. If he were to walk towards me a length of a hand, I will advance a yard towards him. What do I do with the Kaaba? This doesn’t please me”.

3. Hazrat Ibrahim Azam went to Mecca and was surprised to see the Kaaba missing. He thought his eyesight was failing him. He heard a voice which said, “There is nothing wrong with your eyesight, the Kaaba has gone to welcome a lady who is too feeble to walk to the Hajj” [69].

However, it appears more logical that Jivan was made to realize the Truth that ‘God is everywhere’ through reason. As the people including Qazis and Mullahs gathered, they started questioning about the event and held discussions with Guru Nanak. Discussion with the Qazis is mentioned in Vaar 1, Paudi 33:

‘Qazis and Maulvis got together and began discussing religion. A great fantasy has been created and no one could understand its mystery. They asked Baba Nanak to open and search in his book whether Hindu is great or the Muslim. Baba replied to the pilgrim (hajjis) that, without good deeds, both will have to weep and wail. Only by being a Hindu or a Muslim one cannot get accepted into the court of the Lord. As the colour of safflower is impermanent and is washed away in water, likewise the colors of religiosity are also temporary. (Followers of both the religions) in their expositions, denounce Ram and Rahim. The whole of the world is following the ways of Satan’.

Guru Nanak’s account of the occurrence at Mecca.

An eyewitness account by Syed Prithipal Singh [69] about Guru Nanak’s visit to Arab is given here.

Head of these Qazis and Mullahs, was Ruqan-u-Deen who became a follower of Guru Nanak. Recently new facts about Qazi Ruqun-u-Deen of Mecca Mosque, a devout follower of Guru Nanak have come to light where he has been stoned to death on the order of Amir of Mecca because he followed and propagated Guru Nanak’s teaching instead of Islam. This material, however, needs detailed investigation. Name of Ruqun-u-Deen appears in 3 Janamsakhis: Puratan Janamsakhi [72], Janamsakhi B 40 [73] and Janamsakhi Bhai Mani Singh [74]. In a recent paper by Prof. Himmat Singh [75] details of Ruqun-u-Deen also appear in three recently located manuscripts ‘Syahto Baba Nanak Fakir’ (1509 AD) [76] written by Taj-u-deen Naqshbandi, Twareekh-i-Arab’ (1505-06 AD) [77] written by Khwaja Zain ul Abideen and Gunitusalehin [78] written by Abdul Rahman.

‘Syahto Baba Nanak Fakir’[76] whose writer Taj-u-deen Naqshbandi had joined Guru Nanak’s party from Iran and stated to have recorded daily movements of Guru Nanak, wrote about this event as well. While doing research at a university in Medina, Mushtaq Hussein came across a handwritten manuscript, Siyahto Baba Nanak Fakir, in a library. This manuscript was written by an Arabic and Persian writer named Taajudin Naqshbandi. Tajudeen joined Guru Nanak in his journey around Undlas, a town between Erar and Baghdad. While living with Guru Nanak, he kept a diary the Siyahto Baba Nanak Fakir manuscript which he submitted to the library in Medina around 1512 AD. He recorded that Guru Nanak Dev was in the Middle East in Mecca and Baghdad for roughly one-and-a-half to two years.

According to ‘Syahto Baba Nanak Fakir’[76], Guru Nanak moved from there to the Qabristan of Mecca and stayed there for three days. Mardana started his music (in accompaniment of Guru Nanak’s hymns). The people of Arab gathered in the presence of Guru Nanak. Heaps of dates and pots of milk were presented by these devotees. At the end of the music, Guru Nanak delivered a sermon. Qazi Ruqun-u- Deen, Khwaja Zain-ul-aab(i) Deen (writer of Tareekh(i) Arab), Qazi Gulam Ahmed (Richest man of Mecca) and Ibni Aswad, the head of Quresh tribe and heads of Budhu tribes were also present then.

According to Puratan Janamsakhi, Ruqun-u-Deen was a Qazi and was present at the famous Mecca mosque during Guru Nanak’s visit to Mecca. Reaching Mecca, Guru Nanak slept keeping his feet towards Qaba. Ruqun-u-Deen asked him not to do so since feet should not be towards God’s home. Guru Nanak asked him to move his feet to the direction where God is not present. Qazi Ruqun-u-Deen caught Guru Nanak’s feet and moved. In whatever direction he moved Guru’s feet the Qaba followed. Astonished Ruqun-u-Deen kissed Guru’s feet and asked his name and held discussions with him. [79] Details of ‘Makke di Goshat’[80] are given thereafter in which Guru sang his hymn ‘Yak arz guftam pes(i) tu dargos kun kartar’: (Mahla 1: Tilang).

‘I offer this prayer to You O Creator Lord: please listen to it. O Cherisher Lord, You are true, great, merciful and spotless. The world is a transitory place of mortality — we the beings must know this for certain in our mind. Azraa-eel, the Messenger of Death, has already kept a grip on the hair of my head, but I am not still thinking of the God! Spouse, children, parents, and siblings — none of them will be there to hold my hand when I fall at last. The time of my last prayer has come; no one is going to rescue me. I wandered around in greed night and day, contemplating evil schemes. I never did good deeds; this is my state. I am unfortunate, miserly, negligent, shameless and without the Fear of God. Says Nanak, I am God’s humble servant; I am the dust of the feet of God’s slaves. (SGGS, p.721)’

In his Arabic book, Khwaja Jainul Abdin, the author of Tarikhe Arab[77], wrote the first-person account of Guru Nanak Dev ji’s Arabian journey. He writes, “I was with Guru Nanak Dev Ji when Guru Ji met Qazi (an Islamic religious judge) Rukn-u-din.” As they came face-to-face, Rukn-u-din offered his Salam, and the Guru replied, “Sat Sri Akal, Gurbar Akal” (The Lord immortal is the sole truth; the all-powerful timeless God). Rukn-u-din asked, “Fala Alla Mazahbu,” meaning “which religion do you belong to?” The response was, “Abdulla Allah La Mazahabu,meaning “I am God’s servant; I have no religion.”

The whole day passed in questions and answers. There were three hundred and sixty questions in total. About the ban on singing in Islam, the Guru said: “It is written in Hadees that your Prophet Mohammed Sahib went to a wedding in the Quresh tribe where women were singing. Seeing Hazrat Mohammad, they stopped singing folk songs and started singing hymns. Mohammad Sahib Ji said they should sing folk songs and God will bestow respect on them.” Stumped, Rukn-ud-din said, “ya rabi tahroo fi al kabool-ul rab,” meaning “you have been sent to me by God; please bless me with the ability to recognize.”

Rukn-ud-din then argued that, in Islam, it is acceptable to cut hair, but that the Guru keeps his hair uncut. In response, the Guru said, “This is not correct. Even your Quran does not allow this.” Rukn-ud-din was taken aback and asked, “Do I go against what the Quran says? Do you mean, ‘I read the Quran, but don’t understand it? Please explain.” Guru Ji asked him to refer to paragraph two Surat Badar Raku 24 Ayat 1952, (The translator found the reference in question in Ayat 196 instead of 195) where it is specified that cutting hair is prohibited for the ones who go to the Hajj and wish to lead a spiritual life.

On the issue of whether or not God lives in Kaaba, the Guru said: “Even the Quran challenges the notion of considering Kaaba as God’s abode. The God addressed Mohammad and said ‘Nakhan Akarth Wa Allahay Min Habul Vareed,’ meaning, ‘I am closer to every human being than his own world jugulary.” Hearing this, the audience called out, “Marhaba! Labank!! Zazak Hum Allah Tala,” meaning, “Amazing! We surrender in your service. May God bless you with boon and goodness.”

Over the next days, the Guru continued daily services of kirtan (singing God’s praises) and sermons. His services blissfully drew people who were in search of God and truth. People would bring milk, dates, and honey as offerings, which were then distributed amongst the congregation.

One day, the congregation requested guidance for attaining salvation so that their human wanderings could end. According to the author, Jainul Abdin, Guru Nanak Dev Ji sang the following shabad (hymn) in raag (melody) Tilang, page 721 SGGS:

Please listen to my prayer, O Creator Lord

You are true, great, merciful, and faultless, O Cherisher Lord. ||1||

The world is a transitory place of mortality – I know this in my mind.

Yet, I do not realize in my mind that the Messenger of Death has caught me by my hair on head. ||1||Pause||

My spouse, children, parents, or siblings will not be there to hold my hand [when the messenger will take my soul]

When the time of my last prayer will come and when at last I fall, there shall be none to rescue me. ||2||

Night and day, I wandered around in greed, contemplating evil schemes. 13

I never did good deeds; this is my condition. ||3||

I am unfortunate, miserly, negligent, shameless and without the Fear of God.

Says Nanak, I am Your humble servant; may I become the dust of the feet of Your slaves. ||4||1||

(Yak araj gufam pes o ar gos kun karār.

Hakā Kabīr karīm ū be aib parvaragār. ||1||

unīā mukāme fānī ėhkīk il ānī.

Mam sar mūe ajrāīl girafėh il hecna ānī. ||1|| rahāo.

Jan pisar paar birāarāʼn kas nes asaʼngīr.

kir biafam kas na āracūʼn savaḏ ṯakbīr. ||2||

Sab roj gasam ar havā karem baī kiāl.

Gāhe na nekī kār karam mam īʼn cinī ahvāl. ||3||

Babakaham co bakīl gāfil benajar bebāk.

Nānak bugoyajan urā ere cākrāʼn pā kāk. ||4||1||)

The hymn ‘Yak Arz Guftam’ became a fad for Qazi Ruqun-u-Deen.

Eventually, it came time for Nanak Shah Fakir to leave, and the congregation asked for parting words. The Lord Nanak said, “May God be in your mind always; meditate on Him. Your devotion has been accepted in the Guru’s house.”

In this gathering, Hajji Gul Mohammad, Shiekh-e-Arab Khawaja Jainul Abdin, the chief of the Quresh tribe, Aban Aswad, and the chief of the Basu tribe were all present. The news that Rukn-u-din had accepted Nanak Shah as his spiritual guide spread like wildfire in Mecca.

This meeting is narrated by the Arabic author in three hundred pages. He further writes that Rukn-u-din came into contact with the Creator on a Friday evening in 917 Hijri (1511 AD). Only the qazi knows the mystery of this contact.

Khwaja Zain-ul-aab (i) Deen [77] the writer of Twareekh(i) Arab, was present in Qabristan of Mecca. He wrote in the chapter Bab-ul-Mecca of his book ‘Twareekh-i-Arab’[77] (p. 300): The sermon of Guru Nanak was heard by 300 followers. Ruqun-u-Deen went into deep meditation. Thereafter Ruqun-u-Deen never went back to his home and remained in meditation in a cave until he was put to death by the fundamentalist regime. When Amir of Mecca came to know that the Muslims are following an infidel, he issued fatwas (religious order/edict). These fatwas (religious order/edict) were;

1. Nanak fakir is an infidel. His teachings are falsehood and against the Muslim religion.

2. Ruqun-u-Deen’s entire property will be confiscated.

3. The Khwesh tribe, the follower of Guru Nanak is ordered to leave the country.

4. Each follower of Guru Nanak ‘to undergo beating by 30 lashes and to be without food for 11 days.’

5. They will then be buried in sand dunes.

6. Before this, they will be taken on camels around the city with blackened faces.

7. They will be hung upside down.

8. The strongest follower of Guru Nanak (Ruqun-u-deen) will be buried in the ground till his chest and then stoned to death.

Since it was announced in the city that a criminal is being stoned to death; the citizens thronged to watch the event. The citizens of Mecca gathered round with stones….The writer of Twarikh-e-Arab sums up this event saying: “The sacrifice of Ruqun-u-Deen was special. Watching the sacrifice, 50% of the onlookers became followers of Nanak”. This is how the number of followers of Guru Nanak increased with each sacrifice.

In the summer heat, Rukn-u-din underwent all punishments undeterred. When they removed him from a box after eleven days, people could hear God’s name from every pore of his body.

Finally, after twenty-two days, the seventh fatwa of burying in sand and stoning approached. Rukn-u-din was carefree in eternal bliss and simran. There was no sign of sadness in him. In the end, the Shah of Mecca sent for a pen and ink so that Rukn-u-din’s last words could be documented. Rukn-u-din came out of his trance and remembered the words of his guru: “share with others what you experience.” There could have been no better time for this; the masses of Mecca had gathered for the stoning. In front of everybody he stated his last testament: “Rubanian khatiba el imame hazrat Nanak ma, akallamehu ina feehay musle mun.” This meant that “my religion and my god is Guru Nanak. He brings the greatest sacred message and the book. I believe in him. If you wish for redemption, then seek Nanak’s shelter. Whoever reflects on this, will go to heaven.” Upon saying this, he left his body. Those who had brought stones to hit him fell on his feet. Many in the crowd turned their faith to Nanak. Even to this day, the people of Badh tribe, who are lion-hearted, and 16 who are descendants of Nanak’s devotees, still live in Mecca and Baitul Makadas. As Sikhs, they do not cut their hair. Rukn-u-din’s descendants still live around the Tirah Mountains in Afghanistan.

Amir of Mecca sent his men to locate and eliminate Guru Nanak as well. Abdul Rahman the writer of another book Gunitusalehin [78] (1506-07) was one such person assigned the job. He wrote about his encounter with Guru Nanak in his book: “When I was driving my horse with speed and hurry; my horse stopped abruptly. I tried to move him by kicking and hitting but the horse did not move. I lifted my head to find in front that at a distance of 100 yards the faqirs were seated. The elderly person in the midst of them had a brightened face and an aura around of him more powerful than thousands of suns. This brightness shut my eyes and I had a revelation that I was about to commit a crime. The horse proved better than me who saved me from committing this crime even though I gave him lashes to advance. In front of me is the same Godly person who had moved Mecca mosque. Shah Sharaf and Ruqun-u-Deen became his devout followers. He has rightly spread the True Name of God among the Arabs and is now in front of me. I regained my senses and thought of doing the right. I immediately saw the reason; left my horse and shoes and fell at his feet.” This is how the person who had come to kill Guru Nanak turned his follower.

While the Guru was in Mecca, he was presented with a robe on which ayats of the Quran and the Guru’s praise were printed. The Guru was also presented with five ser (a unit of weight) of dates and honey. The second robe was presented by Karoon Hamid, who was the ruler of Egypt. This robe had an Arabic inscription as well. The robe kept in Dera Baba Nanak is one of these two. The Arabic author describes that the robe had the inscription, “La Hilailla Alla Subhan Kaanikun To Min Zalmeen,” meaning “the worship-worthy God is the only one who would show mercy and bless a sinner like me.” “El Hamdul Il Lahe Aalmeen, Alrehman Rahim Malik Yomudin.

When the Guru was leaving Mecca, people were inconsolable at the thought of his departure.

Tajudeen writes that the Guru gave them his staff as a memento and said, “Aasa Man Fazale Rabeen Deedarun Pheere, Haka Ru Vaseera Tul Musatkim.” Translated, this means “consider this staff a seal of God. It shall remind you of the path to God.” Nanak’s disciples consider this staff an object of reverence.

According to Mushtaq, locals talk of three dwellings to the west of Mecca built in the memory of Sultan Bahu, Baba Farid, and Guru Nanak Shah Fakir.

Some questions are being asked on GLZ net on Guru Nanak's travel to Mecca. These are

1. Did Guru Nanak go to Mecca?

2. How could he go to Mecca when it was banned for other than Muslims?

3. Did Mecca rotate in the same direction Guru's feet were moved?

4. Did the Guru leave Khadavan at Mecca as mentioned by Bhai Gurdas?

5. How could the Guru go so far?

I have tried to analyse these questions and have following to reply

Answer 1: Guru Nanak went to Mecca for which the following evidence exists:

Various sources for the Travels of Guru Nanak in Udasi to Mecca and beyond includes Varan Bhai Gurdas Vaar 1, [81] Puratan Janamsakhi edited by Bhai Veer Singh [82] Puratan Janamsakhi edited by Shamsher Singh Ashok [83] Janamsakhi Bhai Bala edited by Dr Surinder Singh Kohli [84] Janamsakhi Meharban in Janam Sakhi Prampra ed by Dr Kirpal Singh [5] Janamsakhi Bhai Mani Singh in Janam Sakhi Prampra [85] Janamsakhi Sri Guru Nanak Devji, (B-40) edited by Piar Singh [86], Twareekh Guru Khalsa, Part 1, Guru 1 by Giani Gian Singh, [87] Sri Guru Panth Parkash by Giani Gian Singh [88] Giani Gian Singh, Gurdham Sangreh, [89] Bhai Kahn Singh Nabha, Gurdham Deedar, [90] ‘Mahankosh’ by Kahn Singh Nabha [91] Guru Khalsa Twareekh by Giani Lal Singh Sangrur [92], Vir Singh (Bhai), 1955, Shri Guru Nanak Chamatkar, [93] Sahib Singh (Prof), Jeevan Birtant Guru Nanak Devji, [94] Tarlochan Singh (Dr.), 1970, Jeevan Charitar: Guru Nanak Dev, [95] Teja Singh Sodhi, 1972, Vachitar Jeewan Shri Guru Nanak Devji, [96] Teja Singh, Ganda Singh, 1985, Sikh Itihas, [97] Kohli Surinder Singh, 1970, Travels of Guru Nanak, [98] Major Gurmukh Singh, Historical Sikh Shrines, [99] Grewal J.S., 1969, Guru Nanak in History, Chandigarh [100] Kalra, Balwant Singh, 'Guru Nanak's Visit to Uch Sharif, Sikh Review 18 (188) [101] Kalra, Mohan Singh : 'Guru Nanak's Mission to the Muslims' in Punjab Past and Present, 3 (1-2) [102] Sewa Ram Singh, 'Guru Nanak at Baghdad', Punjab Past and present, 3 (1-2) 1969[103] Kartar Singh, 1984, Life Story of Guru Nanak [104] Pandit Arjan Muni Kaviraj 1923, Gurduara Darpan [105] Three manuscripts mentioned by Prof. Himmat Singh [106] about Guru Nanak’s visit to Saudi Arabia i.e., ‘Syahto Baba Nanak Fakir’ (1509 AD) written by Taj-u-deen Naqshbandi, [107] Twareekh-i-Arab’ (1505-06 AD) written by Khwaja Zain ul Abideen [108] and Gunitusalehin (1506-07) written by Abdul Rahman. [109] XII plates of manuscript presented by Dr. Trilocahan Singh [10] and Guru Nanak Number edited by Dr. Ganda Singh [111].
Q2.How could he go to Mecca when it was banned for other than Muslims?
Ans 2. During Guru Nanak’s travels Sheriff of Mecca was Barakat II bin Muhammed (Barakat Efendi) (1497–1525) under Mamluk Empire (1254-1517 AD) and also later during the empire of Shah Selim (1517-1520 AD) who were liberal and treated persons from other religions with respect. Visit of other than Muslims to Mecca was not banned. George sandy a Christian mentions of his travels to Mecca, Medina and other areas of Turkish Empire in 15-16th century. He also mentions of Indian caravans reaching Mecca for trade. [112]

Q3. Did Mecca rotate in the same direction Guru's feet were moved?
Ans 3: Though there are instances where Guru Nanak is recorded as showing miracles but it is also recorded that Guru Nanak said, “I perform no miracles. It is all by the Grace of God. “ It is a known fact that Guru Nanak had a rare power of convincing by actions and reasoning out. Mecca event too appears to be reasoning out that Jeevan, Ruqun Din etc., understood and realized and it should be taken as such and nothing more since a lot of myth has been added into hagiographies of Guru Nanak.
Q4: Did the Guru leave Khadavan at Mecca as mentioned by Bhai Gurdas?
Ans 4: Relics of Guru Nanak are found at a number of places. It is also likely that Guru nana left his khadavan at Mecca/Medina as given out by Bhai Gurdas, Giani Gian Singh and a host of other writers. However, it is not traceable at present. Nothing material should be assumed. Understanding his teachings and living there is more important than the material artifacts
Q5 How could the Guru go so far?
Ans 5. I have the privilege of walking across almost all India and neighbouring country searching for the footsteps of Guru Nanak for over 40 years. I have found these existing without a break. Bhai Bala’s saying that he flew from this hill to that appears all myth added to have spice in the story. Guru Nanak actually travelled on foot, boats, horse carts etc., to all these places and I have no doubt about it. He used boats and ships wherever whatever suited. He wore special dresses suiting these areas.

From Mecca, the Guru went to the nearby town of Amara. It was in Amara that the Guru granted benediction to the town’s chief, Janab Imam Gulam Kadar, the son of Imam Jafar. To display his gratitude, the Imam dedicated his mosque to the Guru and his teachings. To this day, according to Mushtaq, this mosque is known as Masjid Wali Hind (Mosque of the Indian Prophet). The town’s people had to build a separate mosque for themselves.


From Amara, the Guru went to Medina. Here, he made his presence known on the mausoleum of Prophet Mohammad. He started singing kirtan and said, “Neehum, Hafat, Chahar Da Ha Salasa Wa Rubaya…” meaning “the nine regions, the seven continents, and the fourteen worlds are all manifested in three qualities. Hinduism says that all this has divided a human’s life into four parts. God is one, and none is his equal…” When the Muslim community heard the singing—and on the mausoleum of Prophet Mohammad of all places—it caused a flood of emotion and anger. They grabbed whatever arms they could and ran, but as they raised their hands in order to strike and kill, they froze.

Hazrat Ali, the descendant of Mohammad Sahib’s son-in-law and a Khalifa (Leader; a successor of Mohammad), put his fingers in his ears and was arrested in this pose. The four Imams—Zaa-far Safi, Jamal Din, Kamal Din, and the Khalifa—were wonder-struck. They asked for mercy on behalf of everybody and begged for an apology for their crime, saying to Nanak that he has been recognized as a nabi (prophet) and will be respected accordingly. The Guru forgave them and the towns’ people’s limbs began to move again. Here, the Guru’s kharav (wooden slippers) are kept in his memory. The Guru blessed the congregation with kirtan for twenty-seven days and taught them to be one with God.

Guru Nanak Visited Al Medinah During his west travels. Raj Nama

Spoken by the First Master

First, Nanak went to Mecca;

Medina he afterwards visited.

The lord of Mecca and Medina,

Kaarun, he made his disciple.

When Nanak was about to depart,

Kaarun, the fortunate, thus spoke:

Now thou art about to go,

But when wilt thou return?

Then the Guru thus answered:

When I put on my tenth dress

I shall be called Gobind Singh;

Then shall all Singhs wear their hair;

They shall accept the 'Pahal' of the two-edged Sword

Then shall the Khalsa be established;

Then shall men exclaim 'Vaheguru'

The four races shall become one and the same;

The five weapons shall be worn by all.

In Kalyug they shall array themselves investments of blue;

The name of the Khalsa shall be everywhere.

In the time of Aurangzeb

The wondrous Khalsa shall arise.

Then shall battles be waged,

Endless war shall ensue,

And fighting shall follow year after year.

They shall place the name of Gobind Singh in their hearts.

When many heads shall be rendered up,

The Empire of the Khalsa shall prevail.

First, they shall conquer Punjab;

Then other countries shall be theirs;

Hindustan and the North shall be possessed by them;

Then the west shall bow to them.

When they enter Khorasan,

Kabul and Kandahar shall lie low.

When Iran has been laid prostrate,

Arabia shall be conquered and they shall march on to Mecca.

Mecca shall be beheld,

And Medina shall be seized.

Mighty shall be the rejoicing,

And all shall exclaim 'Vaheguru'.

Unbelievers shall everywhere be destroyed;

The holy Khalsa shall be exalted.

Beasts and Birds shall tremble in the presence of the Lord.

Men and Women shall everywhere call on God.

The Earth, the Oceans and the Heavens shall call on God.

By calling on the Guru shall men be blessed.

Every faith shall become of the Khalsa;

No other religion will remain.

'Vaheguru' shall everywhere be repeated,

And pain and trouble shall depart.

In the Kalyug shall the Kingdom be established,

Which Nanak received from the Lord.

Worthless, I fall before God;

Nanak, the slave, cannot comprehend the ways of the Lord.[113]


[1] (a) "About Saudi Arabia: Facts and figures", The royal embassy of Saudi Arabia, Washington, D.C., USA.

(b) Madawi Al-Rasheed (2013,. A Most Masculine State: Gender, Politics and Religion in Saudi Arabia. p. 65.

[2] Tripp, Culture Shock, 2003: p.14

[3] Malbouisson, Cofie D. (2007). Focus on Islamic issues, ISBN978-1-60021-204-8, , p. 23

[4] "Saudi Arabia profile – Key facts", BBC News. 23 May 2013

[5] "Saudi Arabia Launches New Housing Scheme To Ease Shortage".

[6] "Demography of Religion in the Gulf". Mehrdad Izady. 2013.

[7] Learsy, Raymond (2011). Oil and Finance: The Epic Corruption. p. 89.

[8] "International - U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)".

[9] Human Development Report 2014 (PDF). United Nations. 2013. p. 159.

[10] James Wynbrandt (2004). A Brief History of Saudi Arabia. Infobase Publishing. p. 242. ISBN978-1-4381-0830-8.

[11] Soldatkin, Vladimir; Astrasheuskaya, Nastassia (9 November 2011). "Saudi Arabia to overtake Russia as top oil producer-IEA". Reuters.

[12] Matthew Gordon (2005). The Rise of Islam. p. 4. ISBN0-313-32522-7.

[13] James E. Lindsay (2005). Daily Life in the Medieval Islamic World. p. 33. ISBN0-313-32270-8.

[14] "History of Arabia". Encyclopædia Britannica.

[15] William Gordon East (1971). The changing map of Asia. pp. 75–76. ISBN978-0-416-16850-1.

[16] William J. Bernstein (2008) A Splendid Exchange: How Trade Shaped the World. Grove Press. pp. 191 ff

[17] Bowen, Wayne H. (2007). The History of Saudi Arabia. ISBN978-0-313-34012-3, , p. 68

[18] Nikshoy C. Chatterji (1973). A muddle of the Middle East, Volume 2. p. 168. ISBN0-391-00304-6.

[19] Bowen, pp. 69–70

[20] Ian Harris; Stuart Mews; Paul Morris; John Shepherd (1992). Contemporary Religions: A World Guide. p. 369. ISBN978-0-582-08695-1.

[21] Mahmud A. Faksh (1997). The Future of Islam in the Middle East. pp. 89–90.ISBN978-0-275-95128-3.

[22]"Saudi Arabian floods kill 77, leave scores missing". Agence France Presse. 26 November 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-26.

[23] D. Gold (6 April 2003) "Reining in Riyadh". NYpost (JCPA)

[24] "World Proved Reserves of Oil and Natural Gas, Most Recent Estimates".

[25] Saudi Arabia entry at The World Factbook

[26] Giani Gian Singh, 1881, Twareekh Guru Khalsa, Guru 1, Par 1, Language department Patiala, p. 239-240.

[27] "Mecca: Islam's cosmopolitan heart". The Hijaz is the largest, most populated, and most culturally and religiously diverse region of Saudi Arabia, in large part because it was the traditional host area of all the pilgrims to Mecca, many of whom settled and intermarried there.

[28], "Population". Statistical Yearbook 50 (2014). Central Department Of Statistics & Information. Retrieved 21 February 2016.

[29] "2thinknow Innovation Cities™ Emerging 11 Index 2009 - Middle East, Africa, and the Former USSR States | 2009". 2009-11-12. Retrieved 2011-04-17.

[30] Jayussi, Salma; Manṣūr Ibrāhīm Ḥāzimī; ʻIzzat ibn ʻAbd al-Majīd Khaṭṭāb Beyond the Dunes I B Tauris & Co Ltd (28 April 2006), p. 295. ISBN 978-1-85043-972-1 [1]

[31] Ibn Battuta's Safari. Tuhfat Al-Nothaar Fe Gharaa'ib Al-Asmara. Chapter: "From Cairo to Hejaz to Tunisia again". ISBN 9953-34-180-X

[32] Cooper, Tom. Wings over Ogaden. Helion and Company. p. 5. Retrieved 16 February 2016.

[33] "History of Arabia."

[34] Makkah Gate in Jeddah.

[35] Giani Gian Singh, p. 241, “Arab vich assa, astava, Mussalla, kitab, pairan neelrang, Kabil rang, seli: eh fakir bana aap rakhde te sathian nu rakhaunde rahe.

[36] Surinder Singh Kohli, Dr. 1969. Travels of Guru Nanak. Punjab University, Chandigarh, pp.139.

[37] Giani Gian Singh, 1881, Twareekh Guru Khalsa, Guru 1, Par 1, Language department Patiala, p. 239-240.

[38] Giani Gian Singh, 1881, Twareekh Guru Khalsa, Guru 1, Par 1, Language department Patiala, p. 241-242.

[39]Khan, A M (2003). Historical Value Of The Quran An And The Hadith. Global Vision Publishing Ho. pp. 26–. ISBN 978-81-87746-47-8.

[40] Al-Laithy, Ahmed (2005). What Everyone Should Know About the Qur'an. Garant. pp. 61–. ISBN 978-90-441-1774-5.

[41] Nasr, Seyyed (2005). Mecca, The Blessed, Medina, The Radiant: The Holiest Cities of Islam. Aperture ISBN 089381752X

[42] Taylor, Jerome (2011-09-24). "Mecca for the rich: Islam's holiest site 'turning into Vegas'". The Independent (London).

[43] A Saudi tower: Mecca versus Las Vegas: Taller, holier and even more popular than (almost) anywhere else, The Economist (2010-06-24), Cairo.

[44] Fattah, Hassan M.Islamic Pilgrims Bring Cosmopolitan Air to Unlikely City, The New York Times (2005-01-20).

[45] Peters, Francis E. (1994). The Hajj: The Muslim Pilgrimage to Mecca and the Holy Places. Princeton University Press. p. 206. ISBN 0-691-02619-X.

[46] Esposito, John L. (2011). What everyone needs to know about Islam. Oxford University Press. p. 25. ISBN 9780199794133. Mecca, like Medina, is closed to non-Muslims

[47] Ham, Anthony; Brekhus Shams, Martha, and Madden, Andrew (2004). Saudi Arabia (illustrated ed.). Lonely Planet. ISBN 1-74059-667-6.

[48]Long, David E. (2005). Culture and Customs of Saudi Arabia. ISBN 978-0313320217.

[49] (a) Kipfer, Barbara Ann (2000). Encyclopedic dictionary of archaeology (Illustrated ed.). Springer. p. 342. ISBN 0-306-46158-7. (b) Glassé, Cyril, and Smith, Huston (2003). The new encyclopedia of Islam (Revised, illustrated ed.). Rowman Altamira. p. 302. ISBN 0-7591-0190-6.

[50] Giani Gian Singh

[51] Phipps, William E. (1999). Muhammad and Jesus: a comparison of the prophets and their teachings (Illustrated ed.). Continuum International Publishing Group. p. 85. ISBN 0-8264-1207-6.

[52] Versteegh, Kees (2008). C. H. M. Versteegh and Kees Versteegh, ed. Encyclopedia of Arabic language and linguistics, Volume 4 (Illustrated ed.). Brill. p. 513. ISBN 90-04-14476-5.

[53] Peterson, Daniel C. (2007). Muhammad, the prophet of God. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing. pp. 22–25. ISBN 0-8028-0754-2.

[54] "Makka – The pre-Islamic and early Islamic periods", Encyclopaedia of Islam

[55]"Makka – The Modern City", Encyclopaedia of Islam

[56]"Mecca Municipality". Retrieved 2010-04-06.

[57]"Visits to the Haram Sharif in Makkah". Archived from the original on 2007-04-

09. Retrieved 2010-04-06.

[58] In the Shade of the Message and Prophethood at the Wayback Machine (archived February 15,


[59] (a) Giani Gian Singh, Twareekh Guru Khalsa, guru 1, part 1, pp. 243-244

(b) Retrieved 2013-02-03.

[60] Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Mecca". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.

[61] Lapidus, p. 32

[62] Nigeria news: "Kano rents 15 houses in Saudi for pilgrims". (2009-06-

30), Retrieved 2013-02-03.

[63]"Mecca – LoveTo Know 1911". 2007-04-12. Archived from the original on

December 14, 2009, Retrieved 2010-04-06.

[64] "Mecca" at Encarta. (Archived) 2009-11-01.

[65] "What is Umrah?". 2007-12-05

[66] Bhai Gurdas Varan, Vaar 1, Paudi 32.

[67] Sri Guru Granth Sahib p.1164, line 13: ‘Lai kamlee chalio paltai.dehurai pachhai baitha jai.

Jio jio nama har(i) gun uchrai, Bhagat jana kau dehura firai.’

[68] Israr Shariat, part 2, page 74

[69] Tazkiratul Awliayah, page 62

[70] Syed Prithipal Singh

[71] Taj-u-deen Naqshbandi,

[72] Puratan Janamsakhi, p.379-389

[73] Piar Singh (ed.) (1989) B.40; Janamsakhi Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, pp.66

[74] Kirpal Singh Dr. (Ed.) (1969), Janamsakhi Prampra; Bhai Mani Singh Wali Janam Sakhi, Punjabi University, Patiala, p. 379-389

[75] Himmat Singh (Prof) (2011), Guru Nanak Viaktitav: Ati parmaneek punravlokan, (Tatkaleen Arbi-Farsi srotan anusaar), paper published in seminar proceedings: Guru Kaal de Sarotan vich Guru Nanak Sahib: Jiwan te Shakhshiat, 22-23 November, 2011, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, pp. 135-140

[76] Taj-u-deen Naqshbandi (1509 AD, unpublished) Syahto Baba Nanak Fakir, original in Mecca State Library, translated into Punjabi by Sayyad Prithipal Singh in 1927-30, presently with Prof Himmat Singh (Reference 4)

[77] Khwaja Zain ul Abideen (1505-06 AD, unpublished) Twareekh-i-Arab, translated by Mohammed Iqbal, manuscript presently with Prof Himmat Singh (Reference 4)

[78] Abdul Rahman (1506-07), Gunitusalehin, manuscript presently with Prof Himmat Singh (Reference 4)

[79] Giani Gian Singh, 1970, Sri Guru Panth Parkash, Patiala, Bhasha Vibhag, Punjab, pp.

[80]Shamsher Singh Ashok (ed.), (November 1969), Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Sri Amritsar, p. 104:‘Tab Guru Baba Makke vich jai vadia…..jai kar(i) soi rahia. Pair Makke di taraf kar(i) ke suta. Tab pesi ki nivaz ka ka vakht(u) hoia. Tab Qazi Ruqundeen niwaj(i) karn(i) aaia. Dekh kar(i) aakhios: “ Ai bande Khudai ke! Tu jo pair Khudai ke ghar val(i) keete hain(i) Qabe ki taraf, so kio keete hain(i)? Tab Guru Babe aakhia,” Jit(u) val(i) Khudai ate Qaba naahi, ut(u) val(i) mere pair(u) kar(i) chhad(u). Ta Qazi Ruqundeen jat(u) val(i) Guru Babe de pair(u) fere ut(u) val(i) Makke da muhra (mehrab) firda jaave. Tab Qazi Ruqundeen hairan(u) hoi rahia. Pair chumios, aakhios, “Ai darves! Tera nau kia hai. Guru Baba sang a sabd(u) in Tialng Raag(u)…. ’

[81] Gurdas Bhai: Varan, Amritsar, S.G.P.C.

[82] Bhai Vir Singh (ed.), August 1926 , Puratan Janamsakhi, New Delhi, Sahit Sadan, Jan 2006, 15th edition

[83] Ashok, Shamsher Singh (Ed.), 1969, 'Puratan Janamsakhi: Sri Guru Nanak Devji, Amritsar SGPC.

[84] Kohli, Surinder Singh, Dr, (ed.) Janamsakhi Bhai Bala, Punjab University, Chandigarh, 1990, (2nd edn),

[85] Kirpal Singh (Dr.), 1969, Janamsakhi Prampra, Patiala, Punjabi University.

[86] Piar Singh (ed.), 1974, Janamsakhi Sri Guru Nanak Devji, (B-40) Amritsar, Guru Nanak Dev University.

[87] Giani Gian Singh, 'Twareekh Guru Khalsa Panth, Patiala, Bhasha Vibhag, Punjab.

[88] Giani Gian Singh, 1970, Sri Guru Panth Parkash, Patiala, Bhasha Vibhag, Punjab.

[89] Giani Gian Singh, Gurdham Sangreh,

[90] Kahn Singh Nabha, March 2005, Gurdham Deedar, Dharam Parchar Committee, SGPC, Sri Amritsar,

[91] (a) Kahn Singh Nabha ‘Mahankosh’, National Book Shop, Delhi, (b) Kahn Sirigh, Nabha 1981,® Gurshabad Ratnakar, Mahan Kosh. Patiala.

[92] Giani Lal Singh Sangrur, 1995, Guru khalsa Twareekh, Ludhiana, Lahore Book Shop.

[93] Vir Singh (Bhai), 1955, Shri Guru Nanak Chamatkar, Amritsar, Khalsa Samachar

[94] Sahib Singh (Prof), Jeevan Birtant Guru Nanak Devji, Amritsar, Singh Bros, 1984.

[95] Tarlochan Singh (Dr.), 1970, Jeevan Charitar: Guru Nanak Dev, Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Board.

[96] Teja Singh Sodhi, 1972, Vachitar Jeewan Guru Nanak Devji, Amritsar, Bhai Chatter Singh Jeewan Singh.

[97] Teja Singh and Ganda Singh, 1985, Sikh Itihas, Patiala, Punjabi University.

[98] Kohli Surinder Singh, 1970, Travels of Guru Nanak, Chandigarh, Punjab University, vii, 200 p.

[99] Gurmukh Singh (Major), Sept 1995, Historical Sikh Shrines, Sri Amritsar, Singh Bros. 1st Edition

[100] Grewal J.S., 1969, Guru Nanak in History, Chandigarh, Punjabi University, R 1979, 348. p.

[101] Kalra, Balwant Singh, 'Guru Nanak's Visit to Uch Sharif, Sikh Review 18 (188) March 19690 : 11-12.

[102] Kalra, Mohan Singh,'Guru Nanak's Mission to the Muslims', Punjab Past and Present, 3 (1-2) 1969

[103] Sewa Ram Singh, 'Guru Nanak at Baghdad', Punjab Past and present, 3 (1-2) 1969, 340 : 343.

[104] Kartar Singh, 1984, Life Story of Guru Nanak. New Delhi: Hemkunt Press. p. 18. ISBN 978-8170101628

[105] Pandit Arjan Muni Kaviraj 1923, Gurduara Darpan, Partap Hari Press, Lahore, 20 June, reproduced in The Punjab Past and Present, Vol III, 1969 at pp. 91-96, by Dr Ganda Singh.

[106] Himmat Singh (Prof) (2011), Guru Nanak Viaktitav: Ati Parmaneek Punravlokan, (Tatkaleen Arbi-Farsi srotan anusaar), paper published in seminar proceedings: Guru Kaal de Sarotan vich Guru Nanak Sahib: Jiwan te Shakhshiat, 22-23 November, 2011, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, pp. 135-140

[107] Taj-u-deen Naqshbandi (1509 AD, unpublished) ‘Syahto Baba Nanak Fakir’, original in Mecca State Library, translated into Punjabi by Sayyad Prithipal Singh in 1927-30, presently with Prof Himmat Singh (Reference 4)

[108] Khwaja Zain ul Abideen (1505-06 AD, unpublished) Twareekh-i-Arab, translated by Mohammed Iqbal, manuscript presently with Prof Himmat Singh (Reference 4)

[109] Abdul Rahman (1506-07), Gunitusalehin, manuscript presently with Prof Himmat Singh (Reference 4)

[110] Trilochan Singh Dr. Jeevan Charitar Guru Nanak dev Ji, Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Board

[111] Ganda Singh, edited, 1969, Guru Nanak Commemorative Volume, The Punjab Past and Present Vol III, pp. 353-356.

[112]Sandys Travels: containing history of the original and present state of the Turkish empire ... the Mahometan religion and ceremonies. A description of Constantinople ... also, of Greece ... Of Ægypt ... A description of the Holy-Land ... Lastly, Italy described, and the islands adjoining. Illustrated with fifty graven maps and figures by Sandys, George, 1578-1644, Published 1673, p.97.
[113] Guru Nanak at Medina - SikhiWiki, free Sikh encyclopedia.

Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create an account on our community. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.