Sunday, September 25, 2016
Gateway to Sikhism

Shaheed Jathedar Amrik Singh Ji



Shaheed Jathedar Amrik Singh Ji was born 1957 to Harbhajan Kaur and Kundan Singh in the village of Kajala in Amritsar. He has one elder and four younger brothers.

Though only a young man, he was honoured with the position of Jathedar at Sri Akal Takht Sahib because he persuaded many people to come here and take Amrit. He himself took Amrit from here six years earlier.

After completing his primary education he was not interested in studying any more. He had a great love for Gurbani and Sikh History.

He was a very compassionate soul and felt distressed at the sight of needy people. To help them he gave money and things from his house and even the clothes he was wearing without any hesitation. Once when he was doing Sewa for the Guru's Sangat, when he could not get the money he needed, he sold a ring made of gold from his home.

He had a daily routine of reciting Naam-Bani at Amrit Vela. No matter how late he was in Satsang the night before he would always be awake for Amrit Vela. At Rehras time in the evening, he would stop his work, no matter how important it was and be present for the Rehras Divaan and bring others with him. This was a part of his Nitnem. After the morning's Nitnem he would not eat any food before doing Darshan of Guru Sahib.

Bhai Amrik Singh was always doing Sangat of Gurmukhs or Sangat at the Guru's house, and he was always strict in his Rehni-Behni according to Gurmat Bebek. He also acquired a love for Sarbloh Rehni (eating in iron utensils). He would always keep his Bata (iron utensil) shining and would never let anyone who had not taken Amrit use it.

He persuaded the workers who helped his mother and father with the farming work and many other people to tread the Guru's path. Even though his family was well off he still wore simple Gursikhi clothes. He would never tolerate anybody who showed disrespect towards Guru Sahib.

On Vaisakhi day Bhai Amrik Singh woke up at Amrit Vela and did his Ishnaan and Nitnem. He then went to the Gurdwara and then went to meet Jathedar Kala Singh who was staying at room number five at Guru Nanak Niwas. He then left his shoes there and bathed at the Holy Amritsar Sarowar.Afterwards he walked around Akal Takht Sahib, did Darshan of the Shastars, thought about the Shaheeds and did Ardas that he may also be able to give Kurbani for his Guru and Panth. He then walked around the Nishaan Sahib reading parts of the Hukamnama:

Kayo kagad mun parwana
Sir ke lek no parey Iana
(Dhanasari Mahalia 5, Panna 662)

He met a Gurmukh on the way to the Divaan who says to him, "Singh of the Guru, today is the time for Kurbani, Guru Ji is in need of a head. The Singhs are preparing to go and stop the insults being shouted against our Guru, you should also be present". Then Bhai Amrik Singh walks towards the Guru's Army. As he was walking he was about to drink water to quench his thirst, when another Gursikh took the glass he reached out for. Then he did not care for water or langar or bother to put his shoes on, and went forward to offer Shaheedi. As he received bullets, he shouted out 'Fateh' and died a Shaheed.

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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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