Sunday, December 11, 2016
Gateway to Sikhism

Agya Kaur, Bibi
Womens Education Pioneer (D. 1918)

Bibi AGYA KAUR,(d. 1918), wife of Bhai Takht Singh and his helpmate in promoting women's education among Sikhs to Which cause he was passionately devoted, was the daughter of Sardar Nek Singh of the village of Sultanpur, near Rahim Yar Khan railway station in the princely state of Bahawalpur.

She had been a resident student at the Sikh girls school, at Firozpur, founded in 1892 and nurtured by Bhal Takht Singh. Agya Kaur had studied at the Mahavidyala up to the high school level. Bhai lakht Singh's first wife Harnam Kaur who was a co-builder of the school died in 1906. He approached Agya Kaur's father to ask for her hand to be his ally in the enterprise he had launched upon. The nuptials took place at Sultanpur on 17 September 1910. On 17 February 1911, Bibi (lady) Agya Kaur left with her husband on a tour of some South Asian countries to raise funds for the school. At Sikh gatherings and at divans at the gurdwaras, she recited holy hymns, kirtan, and made fervent appeals for donations, for their nascent school.

Returning to Punjab on 3 March 1912, she resumed her duties at the Mahavidyala as a teacher and as a matron of the hostel. She was taken ill with influenza during the epidemic of 1918, aggravated in her case by an attack of pneumonia. She died on 27 October 1918. She left behind four children, one of her daughters rising to the position of Director of Public Instruction in Punjab.

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The etymology of the term 'gurdwara' is from the words 'Gur (ਗੁਰ)' (a reference to the Sikh Gurus) and 'Dwara (ਦੁਆਰਾ)' (gateway in Gurmukhi), together meaning 'the gateway through which the Guru could be reached'. Thereafter, all Sikh places of worship came to be known as gurdwaras.
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Encyclopedias encapsulate accurate information in a given area of knowledge and have indispensable in an age which the volume and rapidity of social change are making inaccessible much that outside one's immediate domain of concentration.At the time when Sikhism is attracting world wide notice, an online reference work embracing all essential facets of this vibrant faithis a singular contribution to the world of knowledge.
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