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History Of Sikhism Gurus

1.Guru Nanak Dev Ji


Guru Nanak Dev (1469–1538), founder of Sikhism, was born to Kalu Mehta and Mata Tripta, wherein the Bedi Khatri clan of a Hindu family in the village of Talwandi, now called Nankana Sahib, near Lahore (in what is present-day Pakistan).[1] His father, a Hindu named Mehta Kalu, was a Patwari, an accountant of land revenue in the government. Nanak's mother was Mata Tripta, and he had one older sister, Bibi Nanki.

From an early age Guru Nanak seemed to have acquired a questioning and enquiring mind and refused as a child to wear the ritualistic “sacred” thread called a Janeu and instead said that he would wear the true name of God in his heart as protection, as the thread which could be broken, be soiled, burnt or lost could not offer any security at all. From early childhood, Bibi Nanki saw in her brother the Light of God but she did not reveal this secret to anyone. She is known as the first disciple of Guru Nanak.

Even as a boy, Nanak was fascinated by religion, and his desire to explore the mysteries of life eventually led him to leave home. It was during this period that Nanak was said to have met Kabir (1440-1518), a saint revered by many. Nanak married Sulakhni, daughter of Moolchand Chona, a trader from Batala, and they had two sons, Sri Chand and Lakshmi Das.

His brother-in-law, Jai Ram, the husband of his sister Nanki, obtained a job for him in Sultanpur as the manager of the government granary. One morning, when he was twenty-eight, Guru Nanak Dev went as usual down to the river to bathe and meditate. It was said that he was gone for three days. When he reappeared, it is said he was "filled with the spirit of God". His first words after his re-emergence were: "there is no Hindu, there is no Muslim". With this secular principle he began his missionary work.[2]

He made four distinct major journeys, in the four different directions, which are called Udasis, spanning many thousands of kilometres, preaching the message of God.[1]

Guru Nanak spent the final years of his life in Kartarpur where Langar (free blessed food) was available. The food would be partaken of by Hindus, rich, poor, high or/and so called low castes. Guru Nanak worked in the fields and earned his livelihood.

After appointing Bhai Lehna as the new Sikh Guru, on 22 September 1539, aged 70, Guru Nanak met with his demise.
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2. Guru Angad Dev Ji

Guru Angad DevMain article: Guru Angad Dev
In 1538, Guru Nanak chose Lehna, his disciple, as a successor to the Guruship rather than one of his sons.[2] Bhai Lehna was named Guru Angad and became the successor of Guru Nanak.

Bhai Lehna was born in the village of Harike in Ferozepur district in Punjab, on March 31, 1504. He was the son of a small trader named Pheru. His mother's name was Mata Ramo (also known as Mata Sabhirai, Mansa Devi, Daya Kaur). Baba Narayan Das Trehan was his grand father, whose ancestral house was at Matte-di-Sarai near Mukatsar.

Under the influence of his mother, Bhai Lehna began to worship Durga (A Hindu Goddess). He used to lead a group of Hindu worshippers to Jawalamukhi Temple every year. He married Mata Khivi in January 1520 and had two sons, (Dasu and Datu), and two daughters (Amro and Anokhi). The whole Pheru family had to leave their ancestral village because of the ransacking by the Mughal and Baloch military who had come with Emperor Babar. After this the family settled at the village of Khadur Sahib by the River Beas, near Tarn Taran Sahib, a small town about 25 km. from Amritsar City.

One day, Bhai Lehna heard the recitation of a hymn of Guru Nanak from Bhai Jodha (a Sikh of Guru Nanak Sahib) who was in Khadur Sahib. He was thrilled and decided to proceed to Kartarpur to have an audience (darshan) with Guru Nanak. So while on the annual pilgrimage to Jwalamukhi Temple, Bhai Lehna left his journey to visit Kartarpur and see Baba Nanak. His very first meeting with Guru Nanak completely transformed him. He renounced the worship of the Hindu Goddess, dedicated himself to the service of Guru Nanak and so became his disciple, (his Sikh), and began to live in Kartarpur.

His devotion and service (Sewa) to Guru Nanak and his holy mission was so great that he was instated as the Second Nanak on September 7, 1539 by Guru Nanak. Earlier Guru Nanak tested him in various ways and found an embodiment of obedience and service in him. He spent six or seven years in the service of Guru Nanak at Kartarpur.

After the death of Guru Nanak on September 22, 1539, Guru Angad left Kartarpur for the village of Khadur Sahib (near Goindwal Sahib). He carried forward the principles of Guru Nanak both in letter and spirit. Yogis and Saints of different sects visited him and held detailed discussions about Sikhism with him.

Guru Angad introduced a new alphabet known as Gurmukhi Script, modifying the old Punjabi script's characters. Soon, this script became very popular and started to be used by the people in general. He took great interest in the education of children by opening many schools for their instruction and thus increased the number of literate people. For the youth he started the tradition of Mall Akhara, where physical as well as spiritual exercises were held. He collected the facts about Guru Nanak's life from Bhai Bala and wrote the first biography of Guru Nanak. He also wrote 63 Saloks (stanzas), which are included in the Guru Granth Sahib. He popularised and expanded the institution of Guru ka Langar that had been started by Guru Nanak.

Guru Angad travelled widely and visited all important religious places and centres established by Guru Nanak for the preaching of Sikhism. He also established hundreds of new Centres of Sikhism (Sikh religious Institutions) and thus strengthened the base of Sikhism. The period of his Guruship was the most crucial one. The Sikh community had moved from having a founder to a succession of Gurus and the infrastructure of Sikh society was strengthened and crystallized – from being an infant, Sikhism had moved to being a young child and ready to face the dangers that were around. During this phase, Sikhism established its own separate spiritual path.

Guru Angad, following the example set by Guru Nanak, nominated Sri Amar Das as his successor (The Third Nanak) before his death. He presented all the holy scripts, including those he received from Guru Nanak, to Guru Amar Das. He breathed his last on March 29, 1552 at the age of forty-eight. It is said that he started to build a new town, at Goindwal near Khadur Sahib and Guru Amar Das Sahib was appointed to supervise its construction. It is also said that Himayun, when defeated by Sher Shah Suri, came to obtain the blessings of Guru Angad in regaining the throne of Delhi.
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3. Guru Amar Das

Guru Amar DasMain article: Guru Amar Das
Guru Amar Das became the third Sikh guru in 1552 at the age of 73. Goindwal became an important centre for Sikhism during the Guruship of Guru Amar Das. He continued to preach the principle of equality for women, the prohibition of Sati and the practise of Langar.[3] In 1567, Emperor Akbar sat with the ordinary and poor people of Punjab to have Langar. Guru Amar Das also trained 140 apostles, of which 52 were women, to manage the rapid expansion of the religion.[4] Before he died in 1574 aged 95, he appointed his son-in-law Jetha as the fourth Sikh Guru.

It is recorded that before becoming a Sikh, Bhai Amar Das, as he was known at the time, was a very religious Vaishanavite Hindu who spent most of his life performing all of the ritual pilgrimages and fasts of a devout Hindu. One day, Bhai Amar Das heard some hymns of Guru Nanak being sung by Bibi Amro Ji, the daughter of Guru Angad, the second [Sikh Guru]. Bibi Amro was married to Bhai Sahib's brother, Bhai Manak Chand's son who was called Bhai Jasso. Bhai Sahib was so impressed and moved by these Shabads that he immediately decided to go to see Guru Angad at Khadur Sahib. It is recorded that this event took place when Bhai Sahib was 61 years old.

In 1635, upon meeting Guru Angad, Bhai Sahib was so touched by the Guru's message that he became a devout Sikh. Soon he became involved in Sewa (Service) to the Guru and the Community. Under the impact of Guru Angad and the teachings of the Gurus, Bhai Amar Das became a devout Sikh. He adopted Guru as his spiritual guide (Guru). Bhai Sahib began to live at Khadur Sahib, where he used to rise early in the morning and bring water from the Beas River for the Guru's bath; he would wash the Guru's clothes and fetch wood from the jungle for 'Guru ka Langar'. He was so dedicated to Sewa and the Guru and had completely extinguished pride and was totally lost in this commitment that he was considered an old man who had no interest in life; he was dubbed Amru, and generally forsaken.

However, as a result of Bhai Sahib's commitment to Sikhi principles, dedicated service and devotion to the Sikh cause, Guru Angad Sahib appointed Guru Amar Das Sahib as third Nanak in March 1552 at the age of 73. He established his headquarters at the newly built town of Goindwal, which Guru Angad had established.

Soon large numbers of Sikhs started flocking to Goindwal to see the new Guru. Here, Guru Amar Das propagated the Sikh faith in a vigorous, systematic and planned manner. He divided the Sikh Sangat area into 22 preaching centres or Manjis, each under the charge of a devout Sikh. He himself visited and sent Sikh missionaries to different parts of India to spread Sikhism.

Guru Amar Das was impressed with Bhai Gurdas' thorough knowledge of Hindi and Sanskrit and the Hindu scriptures. Following the tradition of sending out Masands across the country, Guru Amar Das deputed Bhai Gurdas to Agra to spread the gospel of Sikhism. Before leaving, Guru Amar Das prescribed the following routine for Sikhs:

“ He who calls himself a Sikh of the True Guru, He must get up in the morning and say his prayers. He must rise in the early hours and bathe in the holy tank. He must meditate on God as advised by the Guru. And rid him of the afflictions of sins and evil. As the day dawns, he should recite scriptures, and repeat God's name in every activity. He to whom the Guru takes kindly is shown the path. Nanak! I seek the dust of the feet of the Guru's Sikh who himself remembers God and makes others remember Him. (Gauri) ”

Guru Ji strengthened the tradition of 'Guru ka Langar' and made it compulsory for the visitor to the Guru to eat first, saying that 'Pehle Pangat Phir Sangat' (first visit the Langar then go to the Guru). Once the emperor Akbar came to see Guru Sahib and he had to eat the coarse rice in ...


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