Thursday, September 29, 2016
Gateway to Sikhism

The links of the Sikh kingdom with Kangra and its court painters could not have been more complete. Moreover, in 1830 he appointed Raja Sher Singh as Governor General of the Kangra hills, which was a good choice as Sher Singh was as affable as Desa Singh Majithia , and in 1832 it was Lehna Singh Majithia, also a good soul. When Sher Singh was appointed Governor General of Kangra he was only 23 years old, youthful, handsome and energetic yet gentle. He was an immediate success with the local painters and there is a lovely painting of him being waited upon by a Kangra girl after a bath, with his hair open. Sher Singh was to later become a great favourite of the European artists also. In 1833 Ladakh was added to the Sikh kingdom.

 

Maharaja Sher Singh after a bath

 

Rani Gaddan, one of the Queens of Maharaja Ranjit Singh

 

S Lehna Singh

Raja Hira Singh

 

The style of Kangra painting as applied to the Sikh courts and subjects did undergo certain modifications and modern accouterments made their appearances, particularly in the forms of chairs and umbrellas . Two paintings of Radha and Krishna are published in this book from the later Sikh period, in which they are alternately sitting on a chair and a sofa.
Even the frontispiece of the Guru Granth Sahib illustrated in this book (circa 1850, Kashmir) shows a painting in which Guru Arjan is dictating the text sitting on a chair. Also of significance was the fact that during this period the painters gradually switched over from mineral and natural colours to artificial colours with obvious effect. Surprisingly, females were hardly painted in Sikh miniature paintings and murals, apart from derivatives from the Kangra hills legacy.

 

Guru Arjan dictating from the Adi Granth, while sitting on the chair.

 

Lord Krishna sitting on the chair braids the hair of Radha

   
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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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SearchGurbani.com brings to you a unique and comprehensive approach to explore and experience the word of God. It has the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, Amrit Kirtan Gutka, Bhai Gurdaas Vaaran, Sri Dasam Granth Sahib and Kabit Bhai Gurdas . You can explore these scriptures page by page, by chapter index or search for a keyword. The Reference section includes Mahankosh, Guru Granth Kosh,and exegesis like Faridkot Teeka, Guru Granth Darpan and lot more.
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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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