Saturday, September 24, 2016
Gateway to Sikhism

31st March

1504 Second Patshah, Guru Angad Dev Ji came to this earth. He was born at matae di saran, Mukatsar, district Ferozepur in the house of Pheru Mal and Matta Sabrai. His given name prior to Guruship was "Lehna." Today is the actual date of birth even though Guru Khalsa Panth observes it on a different date.

==> Guru ANGAD DEV (1504-1552): The mantle of the First Master fell on Angad, the second Sikh Guru, in 1539, and he graced the exalted position till 1552.

Born at "Mattae de Saran", a Punjab village, on Sunday, Vaisakh Vadi 1 sunmat 1561 (March 31, 1504) to father Pheru Mal and mother Dya Kaur, Guru Angad was originally known as "Lehna". In sunmat 1576, Guru Sahib married Khivi, daughter of Devi Chand. This marriage resulted in two daughters Bibi Amro and Anokhi and two sons Dassu and Dattu Ji. Lehna's parents were orthodox Hindus and worshippers of the goddess Durga. The most momentous and exulting moment in Lehna's life came around 1531 when he met Guru Nanak at Kartarpur. So powerful and profound was the Guru's divine spell on him that he wound up domestic affairs and devoted himself entirely to the service of the Guru and of fellow-men in whom the Lord constantly dwells. Because of his patient and unpretentious service, he endeared himself to the Guru who lovingly called him "Angad" (i.e., of my own limb) and elevated him to the Guruship on Hadh 17th sunmat 1596. However, Guru Angad actually assumed Guruship on Asu 23rd sunmat 1596 and started his work.

Imbibing the spirit of the First Master, Guru Angad began to disseminate the gospel of Guru Nanak to redeem the caste-worn and custom-ridden contemporary society. He denounced formalism and ritualism, and highlighted the edifying experience of the adoration of the Guru (Guru Bhakti), service of the Guru (Guru Seva), and divine meditation (Nam Bhakti). These tie regarded as the noblest means of God-realization. Guru Angad held service in high esteem. Indeed, he placed love of God and service of humanity on the same pedestal.

To consolidate and propagate the mission of Guru Nanak, the Second Master collected the celestial songs and teachings of his predecessor which, together with his own compositions, he transmitted to mankind. There are sixty-two hymns by Guru Angad in the Adi Granth.

Drawing on his own reminiscences and the accounts gathered from Bhai Bala and other disciples of the First Guru, the Second Master produced the first biography of Guru Nanak (in sunmat 1601), and this became the earliest published prose-work in Punjabi. The bastardized version of this biography is available today and known as Bhai Bala's version.

Guru Angad was also a great pioneer in education. He opened a School which, besides promoting the moral health of the students, organized wrestling exercises and manly sports. The Guru's system of education sought a harmonious development of the physical, intellectual and spiritual aspects of the human personality.

In sunmat 1598, the Second Master modified and improved the Gurumukhi script and made arrangements for popularizing it. Besides, he established his headquarters at Khandoor, and under his divine spell many embraced the Sikh religion. The Guru commended the significance of honest work and corporate kitchens. He exhorted the Sikhs not to take to renunciation or asceticism but to carry on the worship of God along with their worldly duties and obligations. Thus, he strengthened Guru Ka Langar or the Temple of Bread, an imaginative measure which helped enlist all men In a league of love.

Guru Sahib left for holy abode on Vaisak 3rd sunmat 1609 (March 29, 1552) at Kadur Sahib, after serving 12 years, 9 months, and 17 days as Guru. At the time of Joti Joot, his age was 47 years, 11 months, and 29 days.

Ref.
- "Guru Granth Ratnavali," (pp. 142) by Dr. D.S. Mani, Sardar Bakhshish Singh, and Dr. Gurdit Singh
- Mahan Kosh (pp. 111)

1519 Lehna, Guru Angad Dev Ji, got married to Mata Khivi, daughter of Devi Chand of village Sangar. This marriage resulted in two sons, Baba Dasu born in 1524 and Baba Dattu vorn in 1537 and one daughter, Bibi Amro born in 1522.

-Ref. "The Sikh Religion and The Sikh People," by Dr. S.S. Kapor, Hemkunt Press, New Delhi, 1992

1785 Sikhs signed a treaty with Maharathas (NOTE:- further details sought on this event).
1913 Ghadar Party was formed in the United States.

==> GHADAR PARTY, a revolutionary group, founded in United States of America (USA) for the independence of India. Its members were Indian residents, primarily Sikhs, settled in USA. Their prime objective was to actively cause rebellion among members of the British forces, thereby forcing the fall of the British empire and hasten their departure from India.

Ghadar Organization and Hindu Leaders

Some revealing insights taken from the book "THE SIKH STRUGGLE - origin, evolution and present phase" by Ram Narayan kumar and George Sieberer

Sikhs in Canada and the USA took lead in organizing Hindustani Workers of Pacific Coast. The organization started bringing out a weekly tabloid called GHADR meaning rebellion in Urdu. The paper became popular and was a catalyst of revolutionary activities. Sikh members of the organization volunteered to return to Punjab to initiate terroist activities with the objective to drive the British out of the country. Control of the paper and the funds of the organization slipped into the hands of Hindus who stayed back. Roughly 1000 Sikhs came back to India. They had been promised arms on their arrival in India. Contacts had been established with the GERMAN government which promised support. But no arms arrived mainly because of the ineptitude and lack of the integrity among the leader of the organization. MONEY PROVIDED BY THE GERMAN GOVERNMENT WENT INTO THE POCKETS OF LEADERS LIKE RAM CHANDRA AND HARAMBA LAL GUPTA. They could not keep their secrets from the British agents. The ship Henry S. loaded with five thousand revolvers was caught by the British navy. Another ship Annie captured by the United State army. In the meanwhile one DR. CHANDRA KANT CHAKRAVARTY, A BENGALI LIVING IN BERLIN, CAME TO THE USA WITH THE POCKETS BULGING WITH MONEY PROVIDED BY THE GERMANS TO THE RUN THE GHADR ORGANIZATION EFFICIENTLY. HE NEVER SPENT A PENNY ON THE ORGANIZATION. THE GERMANS FINALLY DECIDED TO FORGET THE CORRUPT INDIANS.

Ram Chandra was later shot dead by Ram Singh in court. Ram Singh who owned hundereds of acres of land in Canada had sold it all to finance the revolution. Ram Chandra, a Bengali Hindu, had taken the money and used it to enhance his personal financial interests.

1973 The last regular Kar Sewa of Amritsar sarowar, sacred pool of water, at Darbar Sahib, was performed.

==> KAR SEWA: "Kar" refers to the debris found at the bottom of water tanks, pools, and wells. The Kar from Amritsar Sarowar is regularly removed every 50 years. Please note that an irregular "Kar Sewa" was conducted in 1984, by the government of India, as part of their mop-up operations to cover the brutalities of Operation Bluestar.

1979 Elections to the SGPC were held. During these elections, the Badal government used government machinery to defeat Amrik Singh, then President of the Sikhs Students Federation. Numerous bogus votes were polled in favor of Jiwan Singh Umranangal.
1979 Elections for SGPC were held. The Badal government used government machinery to defeat Amrik Singh, President of the Sikhs Students Federation (1979).

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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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