Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Experience with Bhai Jeevan Singh

I don’t remember when exactly I met Bhai Jeevan Singh jee for the first time but it must have been sometime in early nineties. Bhai Sahib at that time was in his prime and fully healthy. Around his white and rosy cheeks his snow white beard gave a very spiritual look. His Blue Dastaara was always adorned with Khanda and Chakra. It gave him the look of a Singh of Bhai Sahib Randhir Singh jee’s times. Bhai Sahib’s countenance always reflected humility and serenity. In my whole life, I have never witnessed a person more humble than Bhai Sahib. It is hard to imagine how he would look if he was upset.

When he did kirtan, it seemed as if he was deeply engrossed in it and drinking nectar from it. He always kept his eyes closed while doing kirtan and if he ever happened to forget a pankiti, his wife would say it in his ears. Now when I hear his kirtan through CDs, I so much regret why I did not take full advantage of listening to his kirtan live, when I had a full chance to do so.

Once I said fateh to Bhai Sahib after samagam. I noticed he was wearing a watch. It looked awkward on his wrist as he was wearing Karas. I commented something along the lines that the watch he was wearing was nice. He immediately removed the watch and gave it to me. I tried not accepting it but who could say no to Bhai Sahib. If you liked his Khanda, he would remove it and give it to you. He had absolutely no attachments.

In those days (early nineties) there used to be Naam abhyaas on certain days of the week. Whenever Bhai Sahib happened to be in Toronto, he always came. Those were memorable times because the abhyaas used to be so good. Bhai Sahib used to do abhyaas silently and towards the end, he used to stand up and do abhyaas. Sometimes along with doing abhyaas he did some exercise as well.

Once I gave Bhai Sahib a ride to Malton Gurdwara Sahib. On the way, I requested Bhai Sahib to tell me a spiritual experience from his life. He humbly replied that he was a great sinner. I persisted but he too persisted in not telling me any spiritual experience. After that I got sad and just went quiet. I did not say anything. He too kept quiet. When we reached our destination, he looked at my face which probably showed my disappointment or some other mercy-invoking expression. Bhai Sahib quietly laughed and then briefly narrated me one experience from his life. He said that once he was sitting in Kirtan behind Bhai Sahib Randhir Singh jee. Bhai Sahib Randhir Singh jee was in some great divine and spiritual colours. Bhai Sahib jee had Sarblohi mala in his hand. Bhai Jeevan Singh too was in very bairaagmai avastha. All of sudden Bhai Sahib Randhir Singh jee looked back at Bhai Jeevan Singh and with love touched his Sarblohi Mala on his forehead. As soon as Bhai Sahib’s mala touched Bhai Jeevan Singh jee’s forehead, he lost worldly consciousness and went to the spiritual realms. He experienced the Parkash of divine jyot.

I asked Bhai Sahib for more details but Bhai Sahib smiled and saying fateh left for Gurdwara Sahib. I just sat there dumbfounded wishing I too had such experience.

When I got married in 1996, I phoned Bhai Sahib to do kirpa of performing my Anand Karaj. Bhai Sahib at that time was in Boston. He expressed his inability to come. I kept asking and begging him to come but he kept saying he would not be able to make it. Then I said to Bhai Sahib that I would only get married if he came and himself performed my Anand Karaj. Bhai Sahib kept my maan and he performed my Anand Karaj. At the time of Anand Karaj, he asked my wife to do kirtan. She did not have Jatha background (although before marriage she did get pesh in Jatha), so she thought it was strange to do kirtan at one’s own Anand Karaj. Bhai Sahib asked her few times to do Kirtan but she was too shy to do kirtan at her own wedding.

Later she has expressed her regrets many times for not obeying the bachan of Bhai Sahib. She was feeling very guilty for not obeying Bhai Sahib’s bachan. At a later date, we went to Dixie Gurdwara Sahib and found out that Bhai Sahib was in the city. My Shrimati jee (wife) badly wanted to meet Bhai Sahib and apologize for not obeying his bachan. She did a small ardaas in her mind saying that if Bhai Sahib is what he is believed to be i.e. a Gursikh of high avastha, may he come in front of her and himself talk to her. So that’s what happened. There was so much sangat at Gurdwara Sahib. Out of nowhere Bhai Sahib came in front of my Begum Sahiba. She was astonished. There she apologized to Bhai Sahib for not obeying his bachan. I too apologized on her behalf at a later date. Bhai Sahib said that if she had done kirtan, she would have received good wishes (aseesa) from so many Gursikhs in sangat. As usual he showered his love towards us.

Many years later, he came to Weston Gurdwara Sahib where Singhs used to gather and do abhyaas. After abhyaas, there were at least 5 or 6 Singhs who had a small talk with Bhai Sahib. During the talk we asked Bhai Sahib about dhuni in Kirtan. The first question we asked was if Bhai Sahib Randhir Singh jee used to do dhuni in Kirtan. He said no. Next question was if he used to do dhuni in Kirtan and he again said no. The last question was how he started doing dhuni in Kirtan. His answer was “Dekha dekhi.” Bhai Sahib said that the form of dhuni that is prevalent today was not in olden days. Dhuni only happened when it was divinely inspired or the kirtaniya could not help it. It was done in rare cases but when it did occur, it went on for hours.

May Guru Sahib do mehar and may we get darshan of Gursikhs who are beloved of our Guru Sahib.

Kulbir Singh


  1. Dear kulbir Singh, what do you mean by doing dhoni in kirtan?

  2. This was taken from an old article that Kulbir Singh had wrote. However, when mentioning dhuni, I belive it means Waehguru Simran/Jaap