Saturday, October 22, 2016
Gateway to Sikhism


3rd April


1775 Foundation stone of Harmindir Sahib, Amritsar laid for 2nd time.

Jassa Singh Ahluwalia laid the foundation stone of Sri Harmindir Sahib, Amritsar, for the second time.

In 1755, Ahmad Shah Abdali attacked India for the fourth time. After looting Mathura, Bindraban, Agra, and Delhi, he brought back jewelry, gold and thousands of young Hindu men and women. In order to liberate the enslaved hindus, Baba Deep Singh and his associates attacked Durani near Peepli and Markanda (now in Haryana). The infuriated Abdali, made his son, Tamur Shah, as the subaedar of Punjab and Jahan Khan as his General. He ordered them to kill all Sikhs and demolish Darbar Sahib, Amritsar. Following orders, Jahan Khan went to Amritsar with heavy artillery. Baba Gurbaksh Singh along with 30 other Sikhs fought back, but unfortunately, Jahan Khan demolished Darbar Sahib, its surrounding buildings and filled the sarovar with garbage.

When Baba Deep Singh got hold of this disheartening news, he challenged the whole Sikh community to get revenge. Sikhs from all over started gathering at Damdama Sahib. Baba ji drew a line with his Khanda (double edged sword) and wanted only those, who were willing to sacrifice their lives, to cross the line and join him. About 500 Sikhs crossed the line and Baba Deep Singh lead them towards Amritsar. On the way many more Sikhs joined in making about 5000 Sikhs near Tarntaran. When Jahan Khan heard this, he reached Amritsar with an army of 20,000. The both sides clashed, 5 miles outside Amritsar. Sikhs were fighting with great enthusiasm. Dayal Singh killed Jahan Khan and Sikhs started moving towards Amritsar. In the mean time, another Mughal general, Atai Khan, reached with more force. There was yet another clash. A mughal commander attacked Baba ji with full force. Baba Deep Singh killed him immediately, but got badly injured in the process. His severed head came off to one side. A Sikh challenged Baba Deep Singh, "Baba ji, you promised to die at Harmindar Sahib." Baba Deep Singh with remaining energy held his head with one hand and started used Khanda with other hand. Finally, he reached Darbar Sahib, Amritsar and fulfilled his promise at the bank of Sarovar. Sikhs under the leadership of Baba Deep Singh took the revenge and liberated Harmindar Sahib. Subsequently, Darbar Sahib was reconstructed in a few years, through the diligent efforts of DeesRaj. The foundation stone of the re-constructed structure was laid by Jassa Singh Ahluwalia.

==> SRI DARBAR SAHIB also known as Harminder Sahib and Golden Temple was constructed by Guru Arjun in the middle of an sacred water tank (sarowar).

"Har Japae Har Minder Saajia,
Sant Bhagat Gun Gawae Ram" -Suhi Shant Mahala 5

In sunmat 1621, with Guru Amar Das's permission, Guru Ram Das started the digging of a tank (Taal) near villages Tugh, Gumtala, and Sultanwind. This digging was completed by Guru Arjun Dev in sunmat 1645 and named "Santoksar".

Simultaneously, with Guru Amar Das's permission, a village was established nearby and named "Guru Ka Chaak". Guru Sahib's residence in this village were popularly known as "Guru Kae Mahal". To the west of these residences, next to the tree known as "DukhBhanjani Baeri", the digging of a tank was started in 1634. However, this digging remained incomplete and was eventually completed by Guru Arjun Dev after he ascended to the Gur Gadhi. Guru Arjun Dev vigorously pushed all of the projects initiated by Guru Ram Das. He invited business people, scholars, and skilled people from all over, to come and settle around this area and establish new markets. As a result this area came to known as "Ramdas Pur". Bhai Sallo is especially noted for his hard work in establishing and populating this area. His contributions are extremely noteworthy.

In sunmat 1643, the construction of permanent sarowar began and its name changed to "Amritsar". As a result the surrounding city also adopted the "Amritsar" name. On magh 1, sunmat 1645, Guru Arjun Dev Patshah asked Sain Mian Meer to lay the foundation stone of Harminder Sahib. The foundation stone was laid right in the middle of the sarowar and upon completion of its construction, Sri Guru Granth Sahib's prakash was established in sunmat 1661.

Harminder Sahib is the most prominent among all Sikh Gurudwaras, where Akhand Kirtan is performed for most of the day. The Vaisakhi Maela celebrations in Harminder Sahib were established by Guru Arjun Dev, while the Diwali Maela celebrations were instituted by Baba Budha Ji, immediately upon the release and safe return of Guru Hargobind from the Gawalior fort.

In Sunmat 1818, Ahmad Shah Abdali blew up the Harminder Sahib with explosives and leveled the sarowar. However, Jassa Singh Ahluwalia once again laid the foundation stone on 11 Vaishakh, sunmat 1821. And through Dees Raj's diligent efforts Harminder Sahib was reconstructed in a few years. Abdali, on three occasions, 1757, 1761, and 1762 pulled down Harimandir Sahib and defiled the sacred tank by caracases of cows. The Sikhs for the first time in 1757 defeated Afghan forces at the battle of Amritsar. The following year, they captured retreating Afghan forces and made them clean Harimandir and the sacred tank.

Maharaja Ranjit Singh took control of Amritsar in sunmat 1859 and decorated Harminder sahib with white marble and gold. Additionally during 1805-9, "Ram Bagh" was developed in remembrance of Guru Ram Das and "GobindGadh Fort" was established in remembrance of Guru Gobind Singh. Khalsa College was established by the Panth in 1892.

-Ref. Mahan Kosh (pp. 267)

For further details on Harminder Sahib, interested readers are referred to the following:
Madanjit Kaur, "The Golden Temple: Past & Present", Guru Nanak Dev university Press, Amritsar, 1983
Patwant Singh, "The Golden Temple", Time Books International, New Delhi, 1988
Patwant Singh, "Gurudwaras in India and around the world", Himalayan Books, New Delhi, 1992
"Sri Harmandir Sahib Da Sunehiri Itihas" by Late Jathedar (of Akal Takaht Sahib) and former Head Granthi of Golden Temple) Kirpal Singh. pp. 389-390. This is the most authoritative book so far on the Golden Temple.

==> Sardar JASSA SINGH AHLUWALIA was born in 1718. He was son of Ahluwalia resident Bader Singh. His close association with Nawab Kapur Singh influenced him in service of GurPanth. Raja Amir Singh of Patiala was introduced to amrit by him. He was a great General of the Khalsa forces during the 18th century and was called "Sultan-ul-Quom", king of the nation, his heroic deeds and qualities of leadership. He killed Hakim Salabat Khan of Amritsar, in 1748, and captured the surrounding region. In 1789, he helped Diwan KodhaMal in removing Shahan Wadh from Multan. In 1753, he defeated Hakim Adinabaegh and conquered Fataibad. He won the successful release of enslaved Hindu men and women from Ahmad Shah Durani. As a result he came to be popularly known as "BandiShoadh" (liberator). He bravely fought in Wada Ghulughara" (the big holocaust). Even after receiving 22 grave bounds, he kept fighting. He was head as well as the life of the Ahluwalia Misl. In 1774, he captured Kapurthala state, established his capital there, and issues coins under our Gurus name. He was extremely popular among our Panth. He dies in 1783 in Amritsar. A monument in his memory was erected near Baba Atal, in Amritsar.

-Ref. Mahan Kosh

1923 First attempt is made by the Babbars to murder Lambardars and Chaukidars of Pindori Nijjaran.
1944 Harbans Singh babbar of Sirhala was sent to the scaffold.
1947 Patel announced the formation of Sikhstan after independence.
1984 Sikhs attacked during Harbans Lal Khan's funeral procession. Central Reserve Police of India killed 8 Sikhs. will strive to be most comprehensive directory of Historical Gurudwaras and Non Historical Gurudwaras around the world.

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. 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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