Expect nothing, live frugally on surprise.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Guru Parv

Lakhs of people, irrespective of religion, caste and gender, gathered at the major gurdwaras in the Capital on the occasion of Guru Purab on Thursday. Even though Guru Nanak Jayanti is the most sacred festival of the Sikhs, it was heartening to see that more than half the devotees thronging the gurdwaras didn't belong to the Sikh community. The event, which falls on Karthik Purnima, commemorates the birth anniversary of the first Sikh guru and the founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak Dev, who was born in 1469 in a village near Lahore called Talvandi, now called Nankana Sahib. The festival was marked by prabhat pheries (early morning processions) which began from the gurdwaras and moved to other localities. The processions included singing of hymns along with the display of the Sikh flag, or the Nishan Sahib, and the palki (palanquin) of the Guru Granth sahib. Two days prior to the jayanti, the Akhand Path started at all gurdwaras during which the holy Guru Granth Sahib was recited continuously without a break for 48 hours. "Devotees from all religions participated in the festival. There were 36 gurus in the Nagar Kirtan on Wednesday, of whom six were Sikhs and rest from other religions. What draws people from all religions to the festival is the message of equality, service and togetherness,'' said Satnam Singh Uppal, the general manager of Bangla Sahib Gurdwara. Kiran Sharma, a lawyer by profession, said at Rakab Ganj Sahib, "I'm a Hindu
, but at the same time I have immense faith in Sikhism. After all, each religion teaches one to respect other religions too. I came here this morning with my family and offered prayers. One does not follow a religion only by birth. It's the greatness of the religion which makes you believe in it.'' While many traditions are getting less popular, this is one festival which seems to be drawing more and more devotees, not just from India but even abroad. Sheley, a foreigner from Australia at Bangla Sahib said, "This country is known for its vibrancy and diversity. Everyone covers their heads before entering and seemed to be so dedicated to the festival. I sat together with others on the floor for the first time and received blessings along with prasad.'' Discussing the relevance of the festival, Satnam Singh said, "Guru Nanak Dev ji was a reformer and always tried harmonizing both Hindus and Muslims in the Sikh religion. He believed in a casteless religion which was non-discriminatory.'' The day-long celebrations started with offering prayers and lightening diyas early in the morning, and was followed by people gathering in the afternoon for the langar (community lunch). A member of Gurdwara committee of Rakab Ganj Sahib, Gur kirpal said, "In the afternoon, the Karah Prasad is offered to men and women irrespective of their religion. The idea behind the free communal lunch is that people should be offered food in the spirit of seva (service) and simran (devotion).


  © Free Blogger Templates Blogger Theme by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP