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Gurus Parkash Diwas Guru Gobind Singh (1666- 1708) January 5


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
A brief overview

Guru Gobind Singh, 1666-1708

Guru Gobind Singh was the last of the ten Gurus, the one who transformed the Sikh faith. In 1699 he created the Khalsa (Pure), a community of the faithful who wore visible symbols of their faith and trained as warriors. Today the Khalsa comprises all practising Sikhs.

Guru Granth Sahib Guru Gobind named the Guru Granth Sahib his successor.

Guru Gobind Singh succeeded his father Guru Tegh Bahadur at the age of 9. His teachings were different from his predecessors' - he believed that no power could exploit the Sikhs.

He spent his childhood years studying Persian and Sanskrit, and was skilled in the art of war. His mission was to uphold right in every place and destroy sin and evil. In 1699 he chose the festival day of Vaisakhi as the occasion to transform the Sikhs into the Khalsa, a family of soldier saints.

Guru Gobind Singh introduced many of the customs that Sikhs practise today.

Sikhs who have been through the Amrit ceremony of initiation become Amritdhari, initiated Sikhs. They take new names and wear the 5 Ks - five physical symbols that Sikhs must wear.

He declared the the Sikh holy book as his successor instead of a human being. The Guru Granth Sahib would thus be the Sikhs' guide forever. Sikhs give it the same status and respect as a human Guru.



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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
I request Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the tenth Guru, to look after me everywhere.

Ardas - the sikh prayer http://www.unp.co.in/f16/ardas-the-sikh-prayer-67253/#ixzz19evyBmzL

Ardas: Sikh Congregational Prayer

by Baldev Singh

I am fascinated by the Ardas approved by the Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) not only for its language, which flows in poetic rhythm, but for the way it encapsulates Sikh history and philosophy in such a pithy composition with a beautiful ending reflecting the universality of Nanakian philosophy (Gurmat). However, I am do not find the second and third lines and Pritham Bhgauti consistent with Gurmat.

Ikonkar Sri Wahiguru ji ki Fateh
Sri BhgautiiJi shae
Var Sri Bhgauti ji ki Patshahi 10
Pritham Bhgauti simarkai...

Thus I decided to find how and when these words were included in the Ardas. It is clear from Macaullife’s translation that second and third line were not part of the Ardas when he wrote his monumental work on Sikhism one century ago [1]. This is how his translation starts and ends.

“Sri Wahegur ji ki Fatah! Having remembered the Sword meditate on Guru Nanak. Through Nanak may Thy Name, O God, be exalted, and all prosper by Thy Grace! Sri Waheguru ji ka Khalsa! Sri Waheguru ji ki Fatah!”

He translates Bhgauti as sword. Up to “May the tenth King, the holy Guru Gobind Singh, everywhere assist us” is the same as the SGPC approved Ardas. However, it is different in several aspects. For example, there is no mention of “five beloved ones”, ‘four sons of the tenth Guru,” “forty immortals” and the gift of long hair. Also, it is much smaller in size than the SGPC Ardas.

Dr. Gopal Singh translated the Ardas into English in 1966 about two decades after the approval of SGPC Ardas. It is remarkable in the sense that in his translation [2], he completely ignores the first three lines and this is how he stars and ends it:

“Having first remembered Lord the God, call on Guru Nanak. Blest by Nanak, the Guru, may our spirits be ever in the ascendancy. O God, may the whole world be blest in thy Will and Mercy.”

Gopal Singh’s translation is shorter in content than the SGPC Ardas but larger than Macaullife’s translation. His interpretation of the last line is different from that of Macauliffe. The footnote says that Guru Gobind Singh composed the first six lines. I think his start of the Ardas is proper and consistent with Nanakian philosophy, and in my opinion the Panth (Sikh community) should replace Bhgauti by an attribute of the One and Only.

Why didn’t Gopal Singh include the first three lines in his translation? Since he is no more with us to answer this question we are left only to speculate. Dr. Gopal Singh was the first Sikh to translate the entire Aad Guru Granth Sahib (AGGS) into English. I think it was his understanding of Gurbani (sacred hymns of AGGS), which persuaded him to drop the second and third lines and Pritham Bhgauti, as they are inconsistent with Gurmat.

Kapur Singh avoids the second line but otherwise his is a faithful translation of SGPC Ardas [3]. This is how it starts and ends.

“Formless–form, to God, the abiding Victory. Var Sri Bhagauti composition of the 10th King. To begin with we invoke the Divine spirit of God and we remember Guru Nanak. May Thy Name, the Religion preached by Nanak, prevail and prosper forever and forever. May Thy Will be done wherein lies the good of all.”

His interpretation of the last line is similar to that of Macauliffe. He translates Bhgauti as “Divine spirit of God” without giving any reference or reason. Moreover, it is surprising and confusing why he didn’t use the same meaning of Bhgauti for the second line he dropped and the third line in the translation? Nonetheless, he says, “The opening part of this prayer, relating to the invocation of the nine predecessor Gurus, is an excerpt from a Punjabi composition of Guru Gobind Singh. It is called Var Sri Bhagauti JI Ki, which is abbreviated metrical version of a chapter of Markandeya purana called Durgasaptasati, seven hundred verses of which have been condensed into 55 stanzas” [4].

If Var Sri Bhagauti JI Ki is a Pujabi version of Durgasaptasati then who added the first stanza relating to the invocation of the first nine Gurus, as Markandeya purana was written long before the time of Sikh Gurus? Is Kapur Singh saying that Guru Gobind Singh did the interpolation? Does he understand the implications of his statement? Most likely he does not because the interpolation or composition of kachi bani (apocryphal composition) are unethical and are condemned in the AGGS. So Guru Gobind Singh can not be the author of Var Sri Bhagauti JI Ki. Then who is the author of Var Sri Bhagauti JI Ki?

Dr. Tharam Singh, a brilliant man, with an analytical mind, who was a frequent contributor to the Abstracts of Sikh Studies, provides the answer to this question:

“The words, Padshahi 10 have been used to deceive the Sikhs into believing that these are the words used in supplication (Ardas) to the Almighty. Since the whole Var is dedicated to the goddess Chandi, there is no reason to believe that the first Pauri is not so intended. If Guru Gobind Singh is not the author of 54 of the Pauris, he can’t be the author of the first Pauri either, the one that begins with pritham bhgauti simarkai. This is confirmed by Bhai Kahan Singh’s explanation of the term Bhgauti in Mahan Kosh. So this form of Ardas from the first Pauri (stanza) of the Ballad has been foisted on the Sikhs just by adding the words ‘Padshahi 10’ to the title. We don’t know just when this form was introduced. It must have come up after the death of Bhai Mani Singh, at the time these so-called Bachittar Natak Granths first surfaced” [5].

According to Bhai Kahan Singh Nabha, Bhgauti means - devotee, goddesses (Bhagwati, Durgadevi, Chandi), sword, Mahakal and a certain meter in poetry (meter, stanza) [6]. Mahakal is the name of Shiv Ji in Hindu scriptures.


1 Macaulife, M. A., The Sikh Religion, V. 5, 1990, p 331-332.

2 Singh, G. Guru Gobind Singh, 3rd edition, 1968, p 126-128.

3 Singh, K. Prasarprasna, 1st edition, Eds. Piar Singh and Madanjit Kaur, 1989, p 287-288.

4 Ibid, p 286.

5 Singh, T. The Chandi Chrittar, Spokesman, October 1999, p 39-42.

6 Nabha, K. S. Mahankosh (Punjabi), 1996, p 910.

Copyright©2005 Baldev Singh.



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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Nanak X. Guru Gobind Singh ji(1666 - 1708)

The tenth and the last Guru or Prophet-teacher of the Sikh faith, was born Gobind Rai Sodhi on Poh 7, 1723 sk/22 December 1666 at Patna, in Bihar. His father, Guru Tegh Bahadur, the Ninth Guru, was then travelling across Bengal and Assam. Returning to Patna in 1670, he directed his family to return to the Punjab. On the site of the house at Patna in which Gobind Rai was born and where he spent his early childhood now stands a sacred shrine, Takht Sri Harimandar Sahib, one of the five most honoured seats of religious authority (takht, lit. throne) for the Sikhs. Gobind Rai was escorted to Anandpur (then known as Chakk Nanaki)on the foothills of the Sivaliks where he reached in March 1672 and where his early education included reading and writing of Punjabi, Braj, Sanskrit and Persian. He was barely nine years of age when a sudden turn came in his life as well as in the life of tile community he was destined to lead. Early in 1675, a group Kashmiri Brahmans, drivels to desperation by the religious fanaticism of the Mughals General, Iftikar Khan, visited Anandpur to seek Guru Tegh Bahadur's intercession. As the Guru sat reflecting what to do, young Gobind Rai, arriving there in company with his playmates, asked Why he looked so preoccupied. The father, as records Kuir Singh in his Gurbilas Patshahi 10, replied, "Grave are the burdens the earth bears. She will be redeemed only if a truly worthy person comes forward to lay down his head. Distress will then be expunged and happiness ushered in." "None could be worthier than yourself to make such a sacrifice," remarked Gobind Rai in his innocent manner. Guru Tegh Bahadur soon aftenwards proceeded to the imperial capital, Delhi, and courted death on 11 November 1675.

Guru Gobind Singh was formally installed Guru on the Baisakhi day of 1733 Bk/29 March 1676. In the midst of his engagement with the concerns of the community, he gave attention to the mastery of physical skills and literary accomplishment. He had grown into a comely youth spare, lithe of limb and energetic. He had a natural genius for poetic composition and his early years were assiduously given to this pursuit. The Var Sri Bhagauti Ji Ki, popularly called Chandi di Var. written in 1684, was his first composition and his only major work in the Punjabi language. The poem depicted the legendary contest between the gods and the demons as described in the Markandeya Purana . The choice of a warlike theme for this and a number of his later compositions such as the two Chandi Charitras, mostly in Braj, was made to infuse martial spirit among his followers to prepare them to stand up against injustice and tyranny.

Much of Guru Gobind Singh's creative literary work was done at Paonta he had founded on the banks of the River Yamuna and to which site he had temporarily shifted in April 1685. Poetry as such was, however, not his aim. For him it was a means of revealing the divine principle and concretizing a personal vision of the Supreme Being that had been vouchsafed to him. His Japu and the composition known as Akal Ustati are in this tenor. Through his poetry he preached love and equality and a strictly ethical and moral code of conduct. He preached the worship of the One Supreme Being, deprecating idolatry and superstitious beliefs and observances. The glorification of the sword itself which he eulogized as Bhaguati was to secure fulfilment of God'sjustice. The sword was never meant as a symbol of aggression, and it was never to be used for self-aggrandizement. It was the emblem of manliness and self-respect and was to be used only in self-defence, as a last resort. For Guru Gobind Singh said in a Persian couplet in his Zafarnamah:

When all other means have failed,
It is but lawful to take to the sword.

During his stay at Paonta, Guru Gobind Singh availed himself of his spare time to practise different forms of manly exercises, such as riding, swimming and archery. His increasing influence among the people and the martial exercises of his men excited the jealousy of the neighbouring Rajpat hill rulers who led by Raja Fateh Chand of Garhval collected a host to attack him. But they were worsted in an action at Bhangam, about 10 km northeast of Paonta, on 18 Assu 1745 sk/18 September 1688. Soon there after Guru Gobind Singh left Paonta and returned to Gurdwara Anandpur Sahib Anandpur which he fortified in view of the continuing hostility of the Rajput chiefs as well as of the repressive policy of the imperial government at Delhi. The Guru and his Sikhs were involved in a battle with a Mughal commander, Alif Khan, at Nadaun on the left bank of the Beas, about 30 km southeast of Kangra, on 22 Chet 1747 Bk/20 March 1691. Describing the battle in stirring verse in Bachitra Natak, he said that Alif Khan fled in utter disarray "without being able to give any attention to his camp." Among several other skirmishes that occurred was the Husaim battle (20 Februaly 1696) fought against Husain K an, an imperial general, which resulted in a decisive victory for the Sikhs. Following the appointment in 1694 of the liberal Prince Muazzam (later Emperor Bahadur Shah) as viceroy of northwestern region including Punjab, there was however a brief respite from pressure from the ruling authority.

In 1698, Guru Gobind Singh issued directions to Sikh sangats or communities in different parts not to acknowledge masands, the local ministers, against whom he had heard complaints. Sikhs, he instructed, should come to Anandpur straight without any intermediaries and bring their offerings personally. The Guru thus established direct relationship with his Sikhs and addressed them as his Khalsa, Persian term used for crown-lands as distinguished from feudal chiefs. The institution of the Khalsa was given concrete form on 30 March 1699 when Sikhs had gathered at Anandpur in large numbers for the annual festival of Baisakhi. Gurb Gobind Singh appeared before the assembly dramatically on that day with a naked sword in hand and, to quote Kuir Singh, Gurbilas Patshahz 10, spoke: "Is there present a true Sikh who would offer his head to the Guru as a sacrifice?" The words numbed the audience who looked on in awed silence. The Gurb repeated the call. At the third call Daya Ram, a Sobti Khatri of Lahore, arose and humbly walked behind the Guru to a tent near by. The Gurb returned with his sword dripping blood, and asked for another head. At this Dharam Das, a Jat from Hastinapur, came forward and was taken inside the enclosure. Guru Gobind Singh made three more calls. Muhkam Chand, a washerman from Dvarka, Himmat, a water-carrier from Jagannath puri, and Sahib Chand, a barber from Bidar (Karnataka) responded one after another and advanced to offer their heads. All the five were led back from the tent dressed alike in saffron-coloured raiment topped over with neatly tied turbans similarly dyed, with swords dangling by their sides. Guru Gobind Singh then introduced khande da pahul, i.e. initiation by sweetened water churned with a double-edged broad sword (khanda). Those five Sikhs were the first to be initiated. Guru Gobind Singh called them Panj Piare, the five devoted spirits beloved of the Guru. These five, three of them from the so-called low-castes, a Ksatriya and a Jatt, formed the nucleus of the self-abnegating, martial and casteless fellowship of the Khalsa. Waah Waah Guru Gobind Singh Aape Gur ChelaAll of them surnamed Singh, meaning lion, were required to wear in future the five symbols of the Khalsa, all beginning with the letter K the kes or long hair and beard, kangha, a comb in the kes to keep it tidy as against the recluses who kept it matted in token of their having renounced the world, Kara, a steel bracelet, kachch, short breeches, and kirpan, a sword. They were enjoined to succour the helpless and fight the oppressor, to have faith in one God and to consider all human beings equal, irrespective of caste and creed. Guru Gobind Singh then himself received initiatory rites from five disciples, now invested with authority as Khalsa, and had his name changed from Gobind Rai to Gobind Singh. "Hail," as the poet subsequently sang, "Gobind Singh who is himself Master as well as disciple." Further injunctions were laid down for the Sikhs. They must never cut or trim their hair and beards, nor smoke tobacco. A Sikh must not have sexual relationship outside the marital bond, nor eat the flesh of an animal killed slowly in the Muslim way (or in any sacrificial ceremony).

These developments alarmed the casteridden Rajput chiefs of the Sivalik hills. They rallied under the leadership of the Raja of Bilaspur, in whose territory lay Anandpur, to forcibly evict Guru Gobind Singh from his hilly citadel. Their repeated expeditions during 1700-04 however proved abortive . They at last petitioned Emperor Aurangzeb for help. In concert with contingents sent under imperial orders by the governor of Lahore and those of the faujdar of Sirhind, they marched upon Anandpur and laid a siege to the fort in Jeth 1762 sk/May 1705. Over the months, the Guru and his Sikhs firmly withstood their successive assaults despite dire scarcity of food resulting from the prolonged blockade. While the besieged were reduced to desperate straits, the besiegers too were chagrined at the tenacity with which the Sikhs held out. At this stagy the besiegers offered, on solemn oaths of Quran, safe exit to the Sikhs if they quit Anandpur. At last, the town was evacuated during the night of Poh suds 1, 1762 sk/5-6 December 1705. But soon, as the Guru and his Sikhs came out, the hill monarchs and their Mughal allies set upon them in full fury. In the ensuing confusion many Sikhs were killed and all of the Guru's baggage, including most of the precious manuscripts, was lost. The Guru himself was able to make his way to Chamkaur, 40 km southwest of Anandpur, with barely 40 Sikhs and his two elder sons. There the imperial army, following closely on his heels, caught up with him. His two sons, Ajit Singh (b. 1687) and Jujhar Singh (b. 1691) and all but five of the Sikhs fell in the action that took place on 7 December 1705. The five surviving Sikhs bade the Guru to save himself in order to reconsolidate the Khalsa. Guru Gobind Singh with three of his Sikhs escaped into the wilderness of the Malva, two of his Muslim devotees, Gani Khan and Nabi Khan, helping him at great personal risk.

Guru Gobind Singh's two younger sons, Zorawar Singh (b. 1696) and Fateh Singh (b.1699), and his mother, Mata Gujari, were after the evacuation of Anandpur betrayed by their old servant and escort, Gangu, to the faujdar of Sirhind, who had the young children executed on 13 December 1705. Their grandmother died the same day. Befriended by another Muslim admirer, Ral Kalha of Raikot, Guru Gobind Singh reached Dina in the heart of the Malva. There he enlisted a few hundred warriors of the Brar clan, and also composed his famous letter, Zafarnamah or the Epistle of Victory, in Persian verse, addressed to Emperor Aurangzeb. The letter was a severe indictment of the Emperor and his commanders who had perjured their oath and treacherously attacked him once he was outside the safety of his fortification at Anandpur. It emphatically reiterated the sovereignty of morality in the affairs of State as much as in the conduct of human beings and held the means as important as the end. Two of the Sikhs, Daya Singh and Dharam Singh, were despatched with the Zafarnamah to Ahmadnagar in the South to deliver it to Aurangzeb, then in camp in that town.

From Dina, Guru Gobind Singh continued his westward march until, finding the host close upon his heels, he took position astride the water pool of Khidrana to make a last-ditch stand. The fighting on 29 December 1705 was hard and desperate. In spite of their overwhelming numbers, the Mughal troops failed to capture the Guru and had to retire in defeat. The most valorous part in this battle was played by a group of 40 Sikhs who had deserted the Guru at Anandpur during the long siege, but who, chided by their womenfolk at home, had come back under the leadership of a brave and devoted woman, Mai Bhago, to redeem themselves. They had fallen fighting desperately to check the enemy's advance towards the Guru's position. The Guru blessed the 40 dead as 40 mukte, i.e. the 40 Saved Ones. The site is now marked by a sacred shrine and tank and the town which has grown around them is called Muktsar, the Pool of liberations.

After spending some time in the Lakkhi Jungle country, Guru Gobind Singh arrived at Talvandi Sabo, now called Damdama Sahib, on 20 January 1706. During his stay there of over nine months, a number of Sikhs rejoined him. He prepared a fresh recension of Sikh Scripture, the Guru Granth Sahib, with the celebrated scholar, Bhai Mani Singh, as his amanuensis. From the number of scholars who had rallied round Guru Gobind Singh and from the literary activity initiated, the place came to be known as the Guru's Kashi or seat of learning like Varanasi.

The epistle Zafarnamah sent by Guru Gobind Singh from Dina seems to have touched the heart of Emperor Aurungzeb. He forthwith invited him for a meeting. According to Ahkam-i-Alamgiri, the Emperor had a letter written to the deputy governor of Lahore, Munim Khan, to conciliate the Guru and make the required arrangements for his journey to the Deccan. Guru Gobind Singh had, however, already left for the South on 30 October 1706. He was in the neighbourhood of Baghor, in Rajasthan, when the news arrived of the death of the Emperor at Ahmadnagar on 20 February 1707. The Guru there upon decided to return to the Punjab, via Shahjahanabad (Delhi) . That was the time when the sons of the deceased Emperor were preparing to contest succession. Guru Gobind Singh despatched for the help of the eldest claimant, the liberal Prince Muazzam, a token contingent of Sikhs which took part in the battle of Jajau (8 June 1707), decisively won by the Prince who ascended the throne with the title of Bahadur Shah. The new Emperor invited Guru Gobind Singh for a meeting which took place at Agra on 23 July 1707.

Emperor Bahadur Shah had at this time to move against the Kachhvaha Rajputs of Amber (Jaipur) and then to the Deccan where his youngest brother, Kam Baksh, had raised the standard of revolt. The Guru accompanied him and, as says Tarzkh-i-Bahadur Shahi, he addressed assemblies of people on the way preaching the word of Guru Nanak. The two camps crossed the River Tapti between 11 and 14 June 1708 and the Ban-Ganga on 14 August, arriving at Nanded, on the Godavari, towards the end of August. While Bahadur Shah proceeded further South, Guru Gobind Singh decided to stay awhile at Nanded. Here he met a Bairagi recluse, Madho Das, whom he converted a Sikh administering to him the vows of the Khalsa, renaming him Gurbakhsh Singh (popular name Banda Singh ). Guru Gobind Siligh gave Banda Singh five arrows from his own quiver and an escort, including five of his chosen Sikhs, and directed him to go to the Punjab and carry on the campaign against the tyranny of the provincial overlords.

Nawab Wazir Khan of Sirhind had felt concerned at the Emperor's conciliatory treatment of Guru Gobind Singh. Their marching together to the South made him jealous, and he charged two of his trusted men with murdering the Guru before his increasing friendship with the Emperor resulted in any harm to him. These two pathans Jamshed Khan and Wasil Beg are the names given in the Guru Kian Sakhian pursued the Guru secretly and overtook him at Nanded, where, according to Sri Gur Sobha by Senapati, Gurdwara Hemkund Sahib, Meditation place of Guru Gobind Singh ji a contemporary writer, one of them stabbed the Guru in the left side below the heart as he lay one evening in his chamber resting after the Rahrasi prayer. Before he could deal another blow, Guru Gobind Singh struck him down with his sabre, while his fleeing companion fell under the swords of Sikhs who had rushed in on hearing the noise. As the news reached Bahadur Shah's camp, he sent expert surgeons, including an Englishman, Cole by name, to attend on the Guru. The wound was stitched and appeared to have healed quickly but, as the Guru one day applied strength to pull a stiff bow, it broke out again and bled profusely. This weakened the Guru beyond cure and he passed away on Kattak sudi 5, 1765 Bk/7 October 1708. Before the end came, Guru Gobind Singh had asked for the Sacred Volume to be brought forth. To quote Bhatt Vahi Talauda Parganah Jind: "Guru Gobind Singh, the Tenth Master, son of Guru Teg Bahadur, grandson of Guru Hargobind, great-grandson of Guru Arjan, of the family of Guru Ram Das Surajbansi, Gosal clan, Sodhi Khatri, resident of Anandpur, parganah Kahlur, now at Nanded, in the Godavari country in the Deccan, asked Bhai Daya Singh, on Wednesday, 7 October 1708, to fetch Sri Granth Sahib. In obedience to his orders, Daya Singh brought Sri Granth Sahib. The Guru placed before it five pice and a coconut and bowed his head before it. He said to the sangat, "It is my commandment: Own Sri Granthji in my place. He who so acknowledges it will obtain his reward. The Guru will rescue him. Know this as the truth".

Guru Gobind Singh thus passed on the succession with due ceremony to the Holy Book, the Guru Granth Sahib, ending the line of personal Gurus. "The Guru's spirit," he said, "will henceforth be in the Granth and the Khalsa. Where the Granth is with any five Sikhs representing the Khalsa, there will the Guru be." The Word enshrined in the Holy Book was always revered by the Gurus as well as by their disciples as of Divine origin. The Guru was the revealer of the Word. One day the Word was to take the place of the Guru. The inevitable came to pass when Guru Gobind Singh declared the Guru Granth Sahib as his successor. It was only through the Word that the Guruship could be made everlasting. The Word as contained in the Guru Granth Sahib was henceforth, and for all time to come to be the Guru for the Sikhs.



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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Gurdwara Moti Bagh

This gurdwara is associated with the Tenth Guru, Shri Guru Gobind Singh Ji. Guruji came to Delhi on the request of Prince Muazzam, who had requested for help in the battle for the throne of Delhi. Guru Sahib camped at the site of this Gurdwara.

On his arrival, Guru Sahib shot an arrow into the Red Fort, informing the Prince of his arrival. He was such a fine archer that when he shot two arrows from a colony of cobblers in Moti Bagh they hit the 'Divan' of the Prince Muazzam (King Bahadurshah). The Guru shot first arrow to announce his arrival in Delhi .

Bahadur Shah exclaimed,"kya karamat hai!". There came another arrow with the message, "Yeh karamat nahin, teerandaazi hai."

The Sikhs of Delhi have constructed a new Gurdwara building. But old building from where the tenth Guru shot two arrows to Red Fort is still intact. The Gurdwara Moti Bagh is situated on the Ring Road between Dhaula Kuan and Shanti Path.



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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
The Red Fort

It is also known as Delhi Fort or Lal Qila in Hindi. As it was built of red sand stone the name Red Fort was thus given. One can proudly say that largest monument in old Delhi is Red Fort.

Though originally built by Rajput king Raja Anangpal later fantastically expanded by Mughal emperors Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb. An interesting point to note about this fort is that it is along the side of Yamuna river, 2 kms in length with height about 18 metres and served as a palace in ancient times for the Mughals.

The construction began in 1638 and finished in 1648.The architecture , art and ornamental work which reflects Indian, European and Persian styles is superb.

It has two gates of importance – Lahore gate which serves as the main entrance to the fort and the Delhi Gate.

Lahore gate is also known as Chatta Chowk which leads to shopping stalls called “Meena Bazaar” .

Drum house or Naubat khana beyond the Lahore gate, heart of fort is the place where musicians used to play instruments on occasions. It contained Elephant Gate where visitors got down from their elephants.

Hall of Public Audience or Diwan-i-Aam served as the courtyard richly ornamented where the king addresses the audience.

Hall of Private Audience or Diwan-i-Khas is site where private meetings were held by Emperor. The hall made of marble with attractive Pea{censored} throne studded with gems and rubies but carried away by Nadir shah.



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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Convinced that only people with an iron will and high self-esteem could oppose injustice, he laid the foundations of martial traditions so his people could proudly proclaim their beliefs and moral goals. He baptised them as a first step towards giving them a distinct identity. In a simple ceremony, an iron bowl full of clear water with sugar added, was stirred by a double-edged sword and a few drops of this magical mix of sweetness and steel - called amrit - were administered to the thousands waiting on the day of Baisakhi in April 1699. He called baptised Sikhs, the Khalsa: A people distinctive in appearance, completely equal, with shared ideals, principles and sense of purpose, without caste distinctions and with service (or sewa) of humanity as an article of their faith. It would be the most democratic of all faiths. The sword - in effect steel - became the symbol of their pride and purpose and of the divine being's will by which the Khalsa would raise it to defend the defenceless and its own beliefs. (by Patwant Singh)

Gobind Singh: Guru Gobind Singh's Service to Humanity

By Inder Raj Ahluwalia

Seeking a new order based on the ideal of sacrifice for the cause of 'dharma' and the rejection of slavery, the Guru created the Khalsa, meaning the pure, on Baisakhi day in 1699. His followers were a spiritual and social entity rather than a politically dynamic force. The Khalsa were ordained to believe in one God, shun rituals and superstitions, inculcate respect for women, and consider everyone equal.

These tenets are of crucial importance even today. Equality for all citizens is one of India's primary social objectives. And respect for women is something most of us badly need to cultivate and practise, in a society that has seen women burnt for the sake of material benefits. The Guru's teachings, therefore, are of special significance in today's world.

The symbols associated with the faith have a deep relevance. Like ancient sages or Kshatriyas (warriors), the Khalsa grew their hair as a pledge of dedication. While this injunction - not to cut hair - was to give them an identity, the other symbols had deeper meaning.

A steel bracelet to denote the universality of God, a comb to keep the hair clean as cleanliness is next to Godliness, underwear to denote chastity and a steel dagger for self-defense.

Administering amrit or nectar to his five disciples and to himself, the Guru had declared: "The Khalsa shall not only be warlike but shall also sweeten the lives of those he is chosen to serve".

Calling the Khalsa the 'pure' and his very own, he formalised entity to the concept of the 'warrior saint'. However, Guru Gobind Singh advocated the use of force only if it were absolutely essential and that too, for a good cause.

The Guru's message was that physical prowess was as sacred as spiritual sensitivity and both had a significant role in our lives. He asked his followers to revere their weapons, and excel in horse-riding, marksmanship, and swordsmanship. They were to act as a bridge between the Hindus and the Muslims, and serve the poor without distinction of caste, creed, or colour. Service to humanity was the key.

Guru Gobind Singh had ordained that Deg, the community kitchen, would be as important as Teg, the sword.

The Guru's inspired leadership prompted the Sikh soldiers to exemplary bra- very, earning for them the distinguished title Sava Lakh - each being able to fight a lakh and a quarter enemies.

But perhaps his greatest message was that one should ignore cosmetic images and look at each and every person as a human being. Each being deserved to be treated well and with kindness. Each had a right to lead a peaceful and dignified existence. Despite his turbulent life, the Guru patronised the arts.

Considering his achievements and impact on society, it is hard to imagine that Guru Gobind Singh lived for barely 40-odd years. He served the Sikh community but was also a saviour of other communities. His quest for dharma was ceaseless. His new order's mission was to 'do right'.


About the photo: Jora Sahib of Guru Gobind Singh. It is alleged One of Guru Sahib's presented him with wooden shoes, and in returned Guruji gifted him with his leather shoes. These shoes are still preserved at Gurdwara Sri Jora Sahib, at Siana Sayyadan, near Peowwa.



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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
aristotle ji

Did you see how old, classic vision and the modern military camp were combine in one landscape? We could also travel from ancient to modern and back visually. Great video.


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Harry ji

I think maybe the best thing to do is remove all the videos and commentary regarding Mittar Pyare Nu. The purpose of this thread is to remember the parkash of Guru Gobind Singh, and debate on the authenticity/religious content of Mittar Pyare Nu detracts from that. This is not the place for it.

Yes, some would classify the song as kachi bani. But there are many Sikhs who do keep the song close to their heart when they contemplate the life and struggles of Guru Gobind Singh.

I am glad you posted the more scholarly version of the debate in your reply and I will include it here so that readers will have context for the fact of several comments and videos being deleted.

Apologies if I have caused you any offense.

This is the link where the authenticity of Mittar Pyare Nu is debated by Dr. Gurmukh Singh at www.sikhmarg.com.

Thank you, spnadmin
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