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Revisiting Guru Teg Bahadur’s teachings on 400th Prakash Parv

Today is an auspicious day for the Sikh community across the globe. 1st May 2021, i.e. today, marks the 400th Birth anniversary of Guru Teg Bahadur; the 9th of the 10 Gurus that founded the religion.

To mark the day, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi visited the holy Gurudwara Sis Ganj Sahib today, to pray to Guru Tegh Bahadur and posted about it on his Twitter account. He posted a few pictures of him and wrote- “Prayed at Gurudwara Sis Ganj Sahib today. We can never forget the life, ideals and supreme sacrifice of Sri Guru Teg Bahadur Ji.”

Guru Teg Bahadur is a respected and followed religious Guru of the Sikh religion. He is considered to be the leader of Sikhs from 1665 until his demise in 1675. Moreover, he is also remembered as an honourable scholar and poet who greatly contributed to the Sri Guru Granth Sahib – the famous holy book of Sikhism. 

Today on the 400th Prakash Parv, let us look back at some of his divine teachings that still inspire us:

  • “One who grieves not in misery and delights not in pleasure, who is free from fear and attachment, and for whom gold and dust are the same and who has renounced both praising and blaming (flattery and slander) and is immune to greed, worldly attachments and pride….when the all Merciful Guru blesses a disciple with His Grace, only then does the disciple attain this blessed spiritual state and blends (merges) with the Lord as water with water.” – He asks people to give-up misery and all the materialistic pleasures associated with life, and only then anyone can be truly spiritual and have a control on himself/herself.

  • “Give up your head, but forsake not those whom you have undertaken to protect. Sacrifice your life, but relinquish not your faith.”

  • “If the hands, feet, or body are covered with dust, they are cleansed by washing them with water. if clothes are made unclean, by use of soap they are washed of impurity. If the buddhi (intellect) is defined by sin, love of the Name will purify it.”

  • “True Realisation of the actual nature of this material world, its perishable, transitory and illusory aspects best dawns on a person in suffering.”

  • “Why go to search forests (to find Him). He who dwells in all hearts but remains ever pure, pervades thy heart also. Just as fragrance fills the rose and reflects the mirror, the Lord pervades all without a break; search Him inside thee. The Guru hath revealed this knowledge that the Aum pervades inside and outside. Saith Nanak, without knowing thyself the scum of doubt will not be removed.”

  • “For whom praise and dispraise are the same, and on whom greed and attachment have no effect. Consider him only enlightened whom pain and pleasure do not entrap. Consider such a person saved.”

  • “One who vanquishes his ego and beholds the Lord as the Sole Doer of all things, that person has attained ‘Jiwan Mukti’ (is liberated while living), know this as the real truth, says Nanak.”

It is evident from his teachings that Guru Teg Bahadur preached a spiritual life and believed in the omnipresence of God. He considered the materialistic pleasures of a man/woman’s life as mere distractions from the path of spirituality and dharma. Through his teachings, he clearly preached to his followers that how the symbol of the universe, Aum (Om), is everywhere, inside you, outside you, inside me and outside me, and also the importance of religion and spirituality in one’s life. His thoughts and teachings about humanity, bravery, death, dignity and more have been included in Guru Granth Sahib so that they remain alive and are read by the forthcoming generations.

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