Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Difficult Terrain of Sikhi -3(Unbreakable Bond)

Sikhi. What is Sikhi? Sometimes I ask myself what is Sikhi? Why am I a Sikh? Why Sikhi is so unique? There is so much difficult and different in Sikhi which is hard to follow in today’s times. There have been times in my life when I have thought of going back to my previous life style, away from complications of today’s debates, fights and religious battles. To a life where I am a simple living being, enjoying my life, living it the way I think its best, eating and drinking whatever I wish, doing whatever I like. There are times when mind is determined to fall in deep pit of hell, known as Evil. Life looks useless, Sikhi and its principles stop mattering to me, everything and anything to do with God, truth, spirituality and netherworld looks useless and myth. The pain, suffering, sorrows I have got on this path weaken me and I think of giving up.

    Suddenly The Soul, the ever-awake being inside this body, the Son of God asks me,'where will you go? What will you do? Who leaves ‘The Best’ for something secondary'?

         And then I stop for a minute, sit down in silence and think. Think what is good for me as a human being. Sikhi, Path of Guru Nanak, Guru Gobind Singh ji is the best. And the best part of Sikhi is the supreme sacrifices made by beloved Gurus and most importantly Sahibzadey. Where will we find an all-powerful Guru sitting on a red hot iron plate, suffering in silence, so that the principles, the ideology, the purity of humanitarian ideals enshrined in Baani of his ancestors are protected? Where will one find a Guru Teg Bahadur, getting his head cut so that faith and symbols of some other faith are protected?

     The Tenth Master, Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj, The saviour of world, who can forget his sacrifice?  Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj did what no other prophet/avatar/saint of this world did. It was He who sacrificed his Father, Mother, four Sons and ten cousins for Dharam, for truth, for humanity.

 Mohammed, prophet of Islam was one day stitching his sandal. A couple of his followers came up to him and started discussing matters of faith. One of them asked, O holy prophet, how will you protect us from fire of hell? Mohammed replied,’ just like I look after my shoes, I’ll look after you too’. Jesus was asked the same question by his followers and his answer was ‘my followers are lambs of my flock. I’ll look after them like a shepherd‘. What are followers, Shoes and Lambs? But come to house of Guru Nanak and here we see Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj standing with folded hands in front of his beloved Gursikhs and asking for Holy Nectar (Amrit). Here we have Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj who said
‘ Khalsa mero roop hai Khaas’
(My Real Sikh, Khalsa is my pure form).

        In entire human history, there isn’t even one prophet/avtar who sacrificed his entire family for Dharam. Guru Gobind Singh ji never fought for kingdom, empires or worldly treasures. His DharamYudh was for Truth, for equality, for peace, to end tyranny and injustice. He fought for common man, who was being looted, tortured and butchered. He didn’t have any personal ambitions, of creating a Kingdom for himself and his family. He fought battles, won them but never took over the lands of losers. He and his Sikhs never touched women or children of those who were defeated in battles (enslaving women, children and youth of defeated kingdoms was a norm in those times, which Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj banned for his Khalsa Panth). He saw all as one, never attacked anyone, never killed an innocent and never converted anyone with force. He was embodiment of Love. The most merciful master, who even killed his enemies in battlefield with the intention of liberating them, in battle of Chamkaur Sahib, Mughal army was being led by Vazir khan, Zabardast Khan, Ajmer Chand and Khwaja Mardood. They were at the end of their formations, looking at battle from a higher location. Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj, shot four arrows at them, which flying for miles in air, hit helmets of these Generals. Zabardast Khan said loudly, Allah saved us! And then they saw there was a letter tied to one of the arrows. Vazir Khan picked up that letter and what he read sent down a shiver down his spine. Master of Archery, Guru Gobind Singh ji had written,’ Vazir Khan, Zabardast Khan, I know you will thank Allah after these arrows hit your helmets and bring them down, but remember, these arrows could have cut your heads and pierced your throats and chests, but I don’t want you to die such an easy death, I don’t wish you to die as warriors in battlefield, so that you get liberated. Your death awaits you, but in a more fierce and painful form, wait for it’.

                  Sometimes I think, when will people, especially we Sikhs start understanding Love of our Guru. Some people say Dharam should not be based on emotions; there is no place for emotions in faith. But I say emotions are a must. The day we start having emotions for Guru, start feeling his Love, that day the bond of everlasting Love will be tied. Guru doesn’t look for his Sikh’s money, his treasures, his fake words, rites and rituals. Guru needs Love, Pure Love. This bond of Love can never be broken, once it is made. And Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj is the one Guru who will never let go of his Sikh. Did he fail martyrs of Chamkaur Sahib? No. When Bhai Daya Singh ji tried to cover body of Baba Ajit Singh ji, Guruji stopped him from doing so, saying ‘Daya Singh, if you wish to cover the body of Ajit Singh, make sure you have enough cloth to cover bodies of all my Sikhs, else leave Ajit Singh also’. Where will we find such a Guru? Is there someone else like him? People who convert to other religions leaving the great Sikhi of Guru are the biggest losers on this planet, because there is no one else like Dasmesh Pita. He didn’t fail his Sikhs at ‘Khidrane di Dhaab’. Here Bhai Maha Singh and 40 Gursikhs, who had deserted Guru’s ranks at Anandpur Sahib came back and fought the Mughal Army, blocking its advance towards Guru and forcing it to retreat. As Guru Gobind Singh ji came in battlefield looking for survivors, he heard Bhai Maha Singh crying for Guru’s Darshan. Guruji went up to him, placed his head on his right thigh and asked Maha Singh’s for his wish. Bhai Sahib replied saying ‘Maharaj, We deserted you at Anandpur Shaib, and we wrote a letter giving up your Sikhi. O merciful Lord, please tear down that letter, forgive us and accept us back in your Sikhi. This is the last wish of your dying Sikh.’ Tears of Love flowed down eyes of Guru Gobind Singh ji and he tore his Gatra from middle. Out he brought ‘bedaava’ which Singhs had written at Anandpur Sahib. Maharaj said, ‘Maha Singh, I lost my four Sons, My mother, thousands of beloved Sikhs, Baani and literature, but see how close to my heart I have kept this letter of yours. I knew someday my Sons will come back to me, and that day I will tear this letter in front of them.’ And saying this Maharaj tore down that Bedaava. As he tore down that bedava and kissed forehead of his Sikh Bhai Maha Singh, the brave Gursikh left his body and went to sachkhand in peace.

               Here is the Guru, who lost his entire family, and at one time had even his clothes torn down by thorns in forest, but he didn’t let the Bedaava tear or get lost. It’s the Love of Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj for his sikh. A Sikh, who loved Guru at any given time, but went far from Guru due to any reason, will one day come back to his Sikhi, because other end of this chain of Love is in hands of Maharaj, who never lets it go. He is the one, who waits patiently for his Sikh to come back to him, because Guru is ever forgiving, it’s only the Sikh who needs to come back and seek forgiveness from Guru.
             Couldn’t Guru Gobind Singh have saved his sons? He could have. He is master of Supreme Power, beholds power of Creation and preservation in his hands, he could have done anything. But he didn’t. Why?  Because if he had saved his sons, then every Sikh father and mother whose son went for Shaheedi would have asked Guru to save their sons. They would have said, ‘O Guru, you protected your sons from death, now save ours.’ But Guru let his sons attain Shaheedi, to inspire coming generations of Sikhs to send their sons to battlefield for Shaheedi without remorse. When Baba Banda Singh ji’s 3.5 year old son was killed by piercing out his heart, Babaji sat unshaken, with the belief that his son has joined ranks of Baba Fateh Singh ji. When hundreds of innocent little kids, of 1-2 years, of 6 months age were butchered in jail of Mir Manu in Lahore, when they were pierced with spears and their bodies cut to pieces, garlands made of those cut body parts and put around necks of mothers, the Brave mothers sat without tears. Only a mother can understand pain of a mother whose six month old baby is cut into parts and then thrown in her lap. I lose words most of the time to explain, to gauge, to understand their bravery, their courage, their vast love for Guru and Sikhi. My evil mind has no power to determine their level of Sikhi and Love. It’s just unthinkable. But one thing which comes to mind is what made them pass through those hard times? What made them face those hardships with such faith and firmness? I believe it was Guru Gobind Singh ji’s sacrifice of his four sons. I believe it was great sacrifice of Sahibzadey and Mata Gujri ji. I believe it was holy blood of great sons of Guru Gobind Singh ji which gave them power, courage and faith to sacrifice their sons for Sikhi. Those Shaheediya of Guru Gobind Singh ji’s family are the one which inspired millions and millions of Sikhs till today and will continue to inspire generations of Sikhs till times immemorial to live, fight and die for Guru, Guru’s honour and Sikhi. A true Sikh, who is attached to his Guru’s Shabad, Guru’s Hukam, Guru’s Feet will never fall for anything which takes him/her far from Guru, which takes him/her far from Sikhi and pure Khalsa ideals.

                 Whenever I feel low, whenever I feel I’m going down, those beautiful, smiling and glowing faces of Baba Zorawar Singh, Baba Fateh Singh ji come in front of my eyes. Its just a vision, or just a thought of my mind, but that is enough to get me up on my feet, to give me power and courage to hold on, to fight, to stand up for my ideals and principles, to hold on to my Guru and my Sikhi.

                   I know Sikhi is hard, path of Guru is hard, there are thorns on every step, but when the light of Sahibzadey is there to lighten up my path, there is no fear, that I will get lost in darkness. I know world is full of distractions, there are people who will try their best to bring me down from this path, there are people who wish to see me down, there are people who wish me to fall on their feet instead of Shaheed Singhs and My Guru, but when Shaheedi Fauja of Baba Fateh Singh ji hold my hand, there is nothing which can throw me down. This is not my Ego or pride; this is my Faith, My love, my belief in power and love of my elder brothers, the Great Sahibzadey.
I know I am weak, but when Shakti of Shaheed Singhs is there to empower me to keep walking despite all the hurdles, I am sure one day I will reach the Abode of My Guru, where on throne of truth sits My Father, Lord of Universe, Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj.

           I know no one is like my Father, and there is no one like my brothers, Baba Ajit Singh, Baba Jhujar Singh, Baba Zorawar Singh and Baba Fateh Singh ji. And I know that there is no place in universe, in whole creation where I can run away from them. They Love us, not only me but everyone who has even a bit of love for them.

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