Siri Guru Granth Sahib – The Abode of Nanak

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    The Siri Guru Granth Sahib is the embodiment of the spiritual revolution which was first ignited by Guru Nanak dev ji and the life breath of eight more Nanaks nurtured and fed this flame. Then in 1699 Guru Gobind Singh ji, the tenth Sikh Guru, transformed that flame into a wildfire of spiritual liberation through the creation of the Khalsa panth.

    Baba Jujhar Singh

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    At the Battle of Chumkaur, Baba Jujhur Singh watched his brother Baba Ajit Singh attain Shaheedi. He desired to fight in the battlefield as well, though doing so meant certain death. He asked his father, Guru Gobind Singh, "Guru Sahib, permit me, dear father, to go where my brother has gone. Don't say that I am too young. I am your son. I am a Singh, a Lion, of yours. I shall prove worthy of you. I shall die fighting, with my face towards the enemy, with the Naam on my lips and the Guru in my heart."

    Guru Nanak and His Companions (tonal)

    Guru Nanak Dev Ji founded the Sikh faith in rural Punjab during the mid 15th century. Discontent with the elusive values and hollow rituals of the Brahamanic Hindu tradition, he set forth on many journeys throughout his life to achieve a true union with God. His mission knew no boundaries or borders and he even completed the Muslim Hajj by traveling to Mecca.

    Guru Nanak’s Odyssey

    Guru Nanak Dev Ji founded the Sikh faith in rural Punjab during the mid 15th century. Discontent with the elusive values and hollow rituals of the Brahamanic Hindu tradition, he set forth on many journeys throughout his life to achieve a true union with God. He sought to spread the divine message of the Almighty and bring healing to a world stricken by the fires of Kalyug. The Guru's travels were accompanied by Mardana and Bhai Bala. He traveled throughout India, conversing with religious sages of the age and visit innumerable centers of Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist, Jain, Sufi, Yogi and Sidh learning. His mission knew no boundaries or borders and he even completed the Muslim Hajj by traveling to Mecca.

    Guru Arjan Dev Ji Birth of the Adi Granth

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    Guru Arjan Dev Ji, the fifth in the line of Guru Nanak, began the compilation of the Guru Granth Sahib, which he called the Adi Granth – the “primal knot” which would forever secure the sanctity of the Sikh faith. The Guru sent out a call to all Sikhs far and wide to bring forth the poetry composed by the four Gurus. When all the volumes had been collected, he sat down with his scribe Bhai Gurdas and carefully selected the genuine works into the Holy Granth. With the completion of this momentous work, the Guru gave the world a gift so pure and essential, that it could transcend the boundaries of time and religion and exist beyond personality and human form.

    Guru Hargobind – Lord of Miri Piri

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    Guru Hargobind became the Guru of the Sikhs at the age of eleven after his father Guru Arjan was martyered on the orders of the mughal emperor. The Guru wore two swords representing Miri and Piri, to declare his temporal and spiritual authority. Guru Hargobind began construction of the Akal Takhat in 1663 with his own hands, and only Baba Buddha and Bhai Gurdas assisted him in this task. The Guru built the Akal Takhat to serve the panth for eternity and as the seat of the sovereignty of the Sikh nation it has withstood the assaults of many would-be rulers of the subcontinent who have come and gone.

    Guru Tegh Bahadur – The Protector

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    Guru Tegh Bahadur laid down his life in order to protect religious freedom for all India which was under the oppressive rule of Mughal emperor Aurunzeb, who wished to convert the entire land to Islam. According to the Guru, living a truly spiritual life meant that one should neither oppress nor allow others to be oppressed. Sikh teachings have emphasized the basic human rights of equality, justice, freedom and the right to one's own religion. Under the inspiring guidance of Guru Tegh Bahadur, the Sikhs regained their confidence and continued to grow in numbers and resources.

    Guru Gobind’s Legacy

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    1666-1708 Nine-year old Gobind Rai [later Guru Gobind Singh], having newly succeeded his father as the Tenth Master, embraces his responsibility of leading the community upon news of his father’s execution in Delhi.

    Jyot – The Divine Light

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    A painting of Guru Gobind Singh ji which speaks to the divine connection to Waheguru which manifested itself in all ten Guru Sahibs. This painting depicts a period in Guru Gobind Singh's life journey when he went into isolation and entered a state of deep meditation for many months, returning with his vision of the Khalsa Panth.

    Vaisakhi 1699 Birth of the Khalsa

    Bhai Daya Ram of Lahore, Punjab, is the first to raise his hand when Guru Gobind Rai asks for a volunteer willing to give his life in service of humanity. Mata Sahib Kaur looks on at the crowd of thousands that has gathered from across the land in response to the Gurus call. Transformed through Amrit into Daya Singh, he became one of the first 5 Khalsa…the Punj Pyaarey (the beloved five).

    Guru Gobind Singh – Master and Disciple

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    The first Vaisakhi (April 13, 1699) saw the initiation of the first five Khalsa. Following their investiture, Guru Gobind Rai knelt before the Five Beloved Ones and asked to be initiated in turn as the sixth ‘saint-soldier’. The Amrit ceremony marked his transformation into Gobind Singh. Thenceforth, he was hailed: “Behold the Man non-pareil! Himself the Teacher, Himself the Disciple!”

    Guru Gobind Singh Maharaj

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    In a brilliant move of strategy and leadership, Guru Gobind Singh initiated the ceremony of Amrit and transformed the Sikhs into the fearless and united body of the Khalsa. The Khalsa became a brave and moral fighting force against the tyrannical mughal ruler that occupied the Punjab. The Khalsa lives in the image and light of Guru Gobind Singh, dedicated to upholding righteousness, freedom, and the dignity of mankind. That is the Khalsa way.

    Bhai Bachittar Singh

    Initiated into the Khalsa on the historic first Vaisakhi Day, Bachittar Singh fought alongside Guru Gobind Singh in a number of battles in defense of Anandpur. This scene shows him in the famous single-handed combat with the enraged elephant charging at the Sikh fort of Lohgarh by the joint enemy forces of the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb and the Hindu Hill Rajas.

    Bachittar Singh – Saint Soldier

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    Initiated into the Khalsa on the historic first Vaisakhi Day, Bachittar Singh fought alongside Guru Gobind Singh in a number of battles in defense of Anandpur. This scene shows him in the famous single-handed combat with the enraged elephant charging at the Sikh fort of Lohgarh by the joint enemy forces of the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb and the Hindu Hill Rajas. The Guru gifted Bhai Bachittar with two essential things to defeat the enraged beast, the Nagni spear and the courage to use it.

    Mai Bhago and the Chaali Muktey

    Mai Bhag Kaur (Mai Bhago) was the inspiration behind the bravery of the martyrs known as the Chaali Muktey – the Liberated Forty – who died in the Battle of Muktsar (1705). She is best remembered as a valiant military commander and one of the elite warriors accompanying the Tenth Guru in battle.

    The Eternal Guru

    In 1708, Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru of the Sikhs, having consciously witnessed the sacrifice of the lives of all his four sons, handed over the legacy of the Guruship to the Siri Guru Granth Sahib. He understood that the age of lineage was over, and so he consciously left no heirs. The unique beauty of this is that the Siri Guru Granth Sahib, our present Guru, can neither be altered nor changed in any way. It is a touchstone for all humanity that exists beyond the limitations of time and space, now and in the future.

    Gurgaddi Siri Guru Granth Sahib

    Guru Gobind Singh ji passed the Guruship to the Guru Granth Sahib ji, our eternal Guru. The event was witnessed by a loyal retinue of Sikhs who had accompanied him south to Nanded. This closely knit sangat, said to be composed of roughly three hundred Khalsa soldiers including Mai Bhago, devout Sikhs and the few remaining members of the Guru’s own family, had endured much tragedy and hardship to remain by his side in those difficult times. In 1708, on the banks of the river Godavari, on a spot chosen by the Guru, they assembled and bore witness this sublime moment that defined Sikhism forever after. Guru Gobind Singh instructed them to follow the Guru Granth Sahib just as if it were a living, breathing Guru.

    Banda Singh Bahadur Sava Lakh Khalsa

    A hand-picked disciple of the Tenth Guru, Banda Singh was the first leader of the nascent Sikh nation after the Guru period. He proved an able military general, administrator and agrarian reformer, and died a martyr.

    Baba Deep Singh Shaheed

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    1682-1753 Baba Deep drew a line with his Khanda and beseeched only those committed to giving their lives in defense of the Sikh faith to step over it. Five thousand Sikhs accompanied him on his journey to free Harimandir Sahib from the Afgan army that had desecrated it. Dressed as bridegrooms in fine clothing and festive ribbons, they joyously readied themselves to wed death. The painting speaks of this blessed journey and the mortal release experienced through their shaheedi spirit, where the spiritual fire upon which they cast their bodies also freed their souls.

    Sarbat Khalsa

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    This painting shows the Sikhs of the tumultuous 18th century gathering at the Golden Temple during Vaisakhi. The Sikhs served as the leaders and protectors of the region and through their courage and consciousness were able to lead the people through the extreme challenges of that time.

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