Tuesday, October 25, 2016
Gateway to Sikhism


Guru Gobind Singh Ji  
The Shaper of the Psyche of the Cyclonic Sikhs
Dr. S.S. Sodhi

"As the slave of the Mighty Lord
I have come to witness the play of Creation"
The Lord has sent me to propagate
Dharama to raise the Godly, to uproot the evil.
  Grant me, O Lord!
That never, never, never,
From deeds good and righteous
Cease I
And never fear the foe;
That in the fight, my resolute will,
The triumphant end
And this alone,
No other wish have I,
That ever in thy ways assured
Thy praises, Lord
Sing I,
And when at last
The inevitable ever of life
Foremost in battle furious
Fall I.

  Close your eyes for a moment and bring in your waking consciousness the iconic imagery that the name of Guru Gobind Singh Ji brings. Let all your mediational processes function and add to this "Gestalt" a giant of a saint representing self-sacrifice, bravery, devotion, charity, trust, patience, a towering, physical super-spiritual handsome body which could emit Karuna and fire depending on the occasion. Go to the cognitive domain and see for yourself a properly cultivated fluid and crystallized intellect, producing divergent responses. Now feel the affect and see for yourself a storm-tossed Mystic sitting in the lap of the Shiwalak hills suffering from all kinds of dissonances and working on a model of a fearless person to be produced and named "Khalsa". Then, see him raising a superstructure on the foundations laid by Guru Nanak who made Ram and Rahim stand in the same row. Perceive him feeling the pulse of the "Murties" (number of peoples) and injecting them with a life-giving shot of ambrosia, the Amrit. Hear him then say these words, "When all other methods fail, it becomes a matter of duty to take up arms against the tyranny", by the "Khalsa". But who is Khalsa, just hear, what the Guru says:

  Khalsa is my special form,
I have my being in Khalsa,
Khalsa is my body,
Khalsa is the life of my life,
Khalsa is my very God,
My Khalsa is a saintly knight. 
Then see him bending on his knees to become the "master and the disciple in one", and getting up from that posture with open arms and pointing: 
My victories are due to them,
My education due to them,
Through their grace I am what I am,
Else millions like me there be,
In the world, poor and unnoticed.

Now imagine him in the Jungles of Macchivara with boils on his feet, clothes in tatters, alone, friendless, sleepless, bare feet, hungry, with a stone under his head, resting on the rough, uneven, bare earth. Even in this state of total disequilibration hear him recite his exquisite lyric in a state of sublimated grateful thanks - giving to the will of God.

"Who will tell my bosom friend,
This, the devotee's fate,
Life Sans thee, 0 friend,
Is hellish fever, serpents' sting,
The forest throne my drinking jug,
The dagger's bowl, the butcher's knife,
Tatters better than princely robe,
If Thou be pleased, O friend.

  Do not for a moment think that he is depressed, he is enjoying the feeling of nothingness that overwhelms one when one sacrifices one's sarbans so that people who are frozen with fear could be thawed out. Through his pre-cognitive faculties, which are the prize possession of a mystic, he knows that his father and two of his sons are not enough to convince people that all they have to lose are their chains of straight-jacketing slavery. He knows his two younger sons, his mother too, have to go to the altar of Sikhism. Hence, that kuruna filled smile. 

See now he has reached Dma and is writing ZafarNama in chaste Persian Verse. It is a letter of victory, victory of the good over the evil. It exposes the hypocrisy and bigotry of the Mughal ruler and warns him that the blood of martyrs will be avenged with the swords of the 'powerless' peasantry. 
Look at him again, he has reached Dam Dama Sahib. Look at the glow on his face - a glow which comes when you are burning fast to anew the conscious of India. He is sitting amongst thousands of his sons dictating from his superhuman memory the entire Adi Granth. He knows they will be needing the Guru Granth after he goes back to his Eternal Abode. 

See, he has reached Nader and is sitting on Madho Das's cot. Seeing Guru's self-actualized oceanic state of beatitude, Madho is feeling a mystic unity towards him. Guru is telling him his story and Banda's wet eyes are becoming red hot with anger. "Banda" Guru says, "Sadhus like you after cleansing their doors of perception through I - naughting, should use their supernatural powers by actively participating to stop the dehumanizing and suffering that the teeming humanity is subjected to by the oppressor." 
Hear Madho Das saying, I am thy Banda
- thy slave forever. 

Now see Banda Singh Bahadar surrounding Sirhind with peasantry from Panjab and uprooting Wazir Khan by using just sticks and stones: See one Fateh Singh slashing Wazir Khan from head to foot and also see Sucha Nand (who advised the Nawab to kill the children of the Guru) with a string through his nostril and dragged around by the Sikhs like a performing monkey in the ruins of Sirhind. See Banda kindling the fire of revolution in Samana, Sadhora, Lohgarh, Banur, Chat, Chaper Cheri, Kasur, Batala, and Kalanor.
  Now see this fire fuelled by the blood of the Punjabis, finally consume the Mughal empire. From its ashes arises the Sarkar Khalsa Ki of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. 

Also, hear Guru Gobind Singh saying, "Whenever five devoted Sikhs conforming fully to the Sikh way of life and Guru's teaching are assembled, know that I am in their midst, because:

"Khalsa is my real self
Khalsa is the life of my life
My Khalsa is a saintly knight."

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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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