Saturday, June 17, 2006
Shabad Hazaare

A beautiful naration (I found on the web), of how Guru Arjan Dev Maharaj scripted the 'Shabad Hazaare', when He was longing to meet His father and Guru, Guru Ram Das JI.

A cousin of Guru Ram Das Ji came to Amritsar from Lahore especially to ask Guru Sahib to attend his son's wedding. Guru Ji said, "I will not be able to go because I can't leave my duties as Guru. Perhaps I can send one of my Sons instead." Guru Ram Das Ji had three sons: Prithi Chand or Prithia, Mahadev, and Arjan Mal. Prithia was in charge of collecting donations, of which he secretly took a portion for himself. When the Guru asked him to attend the wedding, Prithia said, "I have to take care of the collections. And I hate going to weddings." Actually, he was afraid if he were away from the Guru for too long, he might not be appointed the Guru's successor. Having no luck with Prithia, Guru Ji then turned to Mahadev. Mahadev lived his life in meditation and said, "I have no desire to involve myself in worldly affairs." Finally, Guru Sahib Ji asked Arjan if he would go. Arjan said, "I only desire to do what you wish." Guru Ji was very pleased. He asked Arjan to spend some time in Lahore to share the Guru's teachings with the Sikhs there. Any donations he received were to be given to the free kitchen to feed the poor. The last words he said to Arjan were, "You should stay in Lahore until I send for you by letter."

Arjan Mal stayed in Lahore after the wedding and grew to be much loved by his relations and the Sikhs there. Still, all the time he was there, his heart was with his father, Guru Ram Das Ji. When he expressed his longing to his new friends, they suggested he write a letter asking that he be able to return. Arjan Mal wrote a beautiful shabad :

"My soul longs for the Guru like the pied-cuckoo longs for the rain of the monsoon. I am always a sacrifice unto the True Guru."

He sent this letter with one of the Sikhs who had come with him to Lahore. When the messenger reached Amritsar, Prithia saw him and suspected that he had a letter for the Guru from his brother. He said,"I will take the letter to the Guru myself." When he read the letter he knew that it was so beautiful that it would move the Guru's heart in Arjan's favor. So he hid the letter in his coat and sent the Sikh back to Arjan telling him that the Guru said he should stay in Lahore until sent for. When Arjan received this message, he knew that Prithia, and not his father, had sent it. He then wrote a second letter with strict orders that it be given only to the Guru. In it, he wrote, "I love the sight of the Guru's face and the sound of his words, and it has been long since I have seen him. I am ever a sacrifice unto the True Guru."

This time, Prithia grabbed the letter out of the messenger's hands, and grew more angry than before. Again, he hid the letter in his coat. He sent another message that Arjan was to remain in Lahore until sent for. When Arjan heard this from the messenger, he wrote a third letter, this time putting a number "3" on it. He told the messenger to be on his guard against Prithia and to give the letter to Guru Ram Das Ji himself. The messenger waited until Prithia had to go home, and then quickly reached the Guru and gave him the letter. In it, Arjan said, "Each second away from the Guru is like an age. I cannot sleep without a sight of the Guru. I am ever a sacrifice unto him."

On this letter, the Guru saw the number "3", and knew instantly that he had not received the other two letters. The messenger related the story to him, and the Guru grew very angry. He called for Prithia and asked him three times if he knew anything about the other letters. Prithia denied it everytime. The all knowing Guru knew his thoughts, and told the messenger to go get the coat in Prithia's house. When he returned with it, the two missing letters were in the pocket. The Guru charged Prithia with lying in front of the whole congregation, and laid bare his disobedience to the Guru.

At once, the Guru sent Bhai Buddha to Lahore with a carriage to bring Arjan Mal home as soon as possible. When Arjan was finally united with his father, he placed his head on Guru Sahib Ji's chest against his long beard. He remained that way for many moments, while the Guru held him gently in his arms. The Guru then said that as he had written three stanzas, he should write a fourth to finish the poem. Arjan wrote the last verse saying, "It is my good fortune to have met the True Guru, and I have found the Immortal God in my own home. My greatest desire is to never be separated from him again, not even for an instant. I am ever a sacrifice to the True Guru."

Upon hearing this, the Guru was very pleased. He said, "The Guruship is passed on because of merit. As only the one who is most humble can claim it, I grant it to you." Guru Ji then sent for a coconut and five paisey and placed them before Arjan. He descended from his throne and seated Arjan upon it in front of the whole sangat. Bhai Buddha pressed the tilak on Arjan's forehead as a symbol that the light of Guru Ram Das Ji had now passed to Arjan, who then became Guru Arjun Dev Ji the fifth Guru of the Sikhs.


The Bani (Scripture) of Fifth Guru Arjan Dev, in the Raag (Musical measure) called Maajh, Chau-Padas (Four lines per Hymn), First House of Raag.

My mind longs for meeting the Guru
(Guru Arjun Dev, not yet a Guru, expresses his desire to meet his father Guru Ram Das Ji).
It is anxious like the rain-bird
(Weaver-bird, Papiha: Papeehaa, Beehaa, or Bambeehaa It keeps eager to have a drop of rain at a special auspicious moment).
I am thirsty and have no peace without meeting the revered Saint (my Guru-Father). ||1||

I am a sacrifice (Love-lost, eager) for meeting the Saint (Guru-Father). ||1||Pause||
(Pause means wait, and contemplate on what has been said above).
Your face (Meeting you) is so impressive, and your speech is peace and joy giving.
(But) my Lord -Guru-Father, it has been long since that I met you. (I long to see you).
Great blessed is the place where you are (Live), my friend, companion, and my lord (Guru-Father). ||2||

I am a sacrifice - an appreciation, to my friend and companion lord (Guru-Father). ||1||Pause||
When I could not see you even for a short while, it was a dark-age, a hard time, for me.
When shall I meet you now, beloved Lord (Revered father)!
My night does not pass, and sleep comes not, without being in the presence of the Guru: Prophet (Guru-Father). ||3||

I am a sacrifice, sacrifice I am, to this true court of the revered Guru. ||1||Pause||
It is my good destiny, that I have met the Saint Guru (The Saint-Father).
I met Immortal Prabhu at home.
(Prabhu - The Master: father, met Guru Arjan Dev on his return from Lahore. At every step the son is calling his father, Lord).
I will serve You forevere, and shall never be separated from You even for an instant. Servant Nanak is Your slave, O beloved Master. ||4||
I am, a sacrifice - an appreciation I am, Nanak is yours and in your service (my Guru-Father). ||Pause||1||8||
(This 4th Hymn is his thanks after his return from Lahore).

In the turbulant times after Guru Arjun Dev Ji's martydom the Sikhs came to Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji (sixth Guru) and said "O Lord of all the heavens we are in turbulant times where we are preparing and training for battle which is cutting into out Naam/Simran time. Please tell us Guru Sahib, what prayers should we recite to make for this?" Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji answered that they should recite the shabads of Guru Arjun Dev Ji that he wrote to Guru Ram Das Ji. These shabads are now known as Shabad Hazare (pronounced Haz-ar-ray) , for their recited worth is a thousand fold.
Posted by Puneet Kaur at 3:52 AM | Permalink | 7 comments
Thursday, June 01, 2006
Shukrana Maharaj...
Gurufateh to all Guru de pyare

This picture from Gurudwara Panja Sahib, Pakistan speaks volumes... Just as Guru Nanak Dev Ji did kirpa at this pawan asthan when he stopped the the big rock that Wali Kandhari was dropping from a hill top, with HIS PANJA... I believe HE is forever blessing HIS pyare who remember HIM...

I would like to share with you my happiness today as Guru Maharaj has been so kind that the trying times we had been going through have come to an end, atleast for now. With your good wishes and above all Maharaj has heard everyone's Ardas!

Am left speechless and cant believe how kind Guru ji has been...i don’t think I could ever thank Maharaj enough for the endless times HE has shown mercy, HIS love, HIS concern... in so many ways.

But I have another Ardas to do today… not only to thank HIM but to ask HIM that I may forever remember HIM...NEVER DOUBT HIM...

As I remember Guru ji with shukrana I remember this shabad...

'Main Charey kunda Bhaliyaa Tudh Jevad Na Sayeeyan....'
Posted by Puneet Kaur at 3:37 AM | Permalink | 7 comments
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