The man who preached the peaceful religion of Sikhism, was born exactly 550 years ago today. Although born in a Hindu family almost 40kms from Lahore in 1469, he studied Islam and Hinduism intensively. Baffled by the oneness of the preaching, he concluded that there can never be a bifurcation in morale, and thus, there is no bifurcation in God. Yes, we’re talking about Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji – a poet, religious teacher, and one of the humblest social reformers the country has ever witnessed. On the occasion of the 550th birthday of Guru Nanak, here are some of his primary preaching that run peace in the world even today!
The unity of God, and unanimity of values
Not being convinced with the idea of multiple religions that were being practiced by people in full swing, Guru Nanak proposed the idea of one God, one religion. All preaching by all religions ultimately narrowed down to a few virtues – love and peace, protection of nature and fellow humans, truth and spirituality. Thus, battling over whose God is bigger made no sense. God is the ultimate power sans shape and body. God is a spirit, healer, and light.
A believer of equality and fraternity
If one looks closely, there are no rigid castes in Sikhism anymore, and the religion owes it to Guru Nanak Dev Ji. He preached that every man is equal in the eyes of God, and thus, should be treated equally. The whole concept of Langar proves that irrespective of what you wear, or believe in, or how much you earn, you deserve a place in the abode of God. We are all equal in his eyes, so we cook and eat together from one plate, and stand tall, hand-in-hand with each other through thick and thin as fellow human beings. He believed that love dictates all, and love is the ultimate salvation.
Guru Nanak’s written efforts for global peace
The holy text of Sikhism, Guru Granth Sahib comprises 974 poetic hymns, all preaching love and peace. Guru Nanak described living an “active, creative and practical life of truthfulness, fidelity, self-control and purity”. To establish global peace, Guru Nanak’s teachings have been interpreted in the following ways:
- Sharing what is abundant to one with others in need.
- Making an honest living devoid of fraud and exploitation.
- Meditating on God’s name to control the five weaknesses of mankind or human personality. They are Kama (lust), Krodh (wrath), Lobh (greed), Moh (attachment) and Ahankar (entitlement).
Government of India to commemorate the celebrations, and how.
Sri Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India has been invited to attend the functions of Gurupurab at Sultanpur Lodhi. These functions primarily consist of heartfelt prayers, scrumptious Langar and soulful kirtans. The celebrations begin two days prior with a procession called ‘Prabhat Pheri’. A Nagarkirtan (procession) is held a day prior to the Jayanti, where Nishan Sahib (the Sikh flag) and the Palki of Guru Granth Sahib are carried all across towns.
Believers and practitioners of Sikhism go through a plethora of emotions each year on this date. But as auspicious as the 550th birthday gets, Sikhs all around the world would be celebrating their hearts out to one true God in their eyes – Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji.