Guru Gobind Singh
Guru Gobind Singh, born Gobind Rai, was the tenth Sikh Guru, a spiritual master, warrior and philosopher. When his father, Guru Tegh Bahadur, was beheaded for refusing to convert to Islam, Guru Gobind Singh was formally installed as the leader of the Sikhs at age nine, becoming the tenth Sikh Guru, his four sons died during his lifetime -- two in two executed by the Mughal army. Among his notable contributions to Sikhism are founding the Sikh warrior community called Khalsa in 1699 and introducing the Five Ks, the five articles of faith that Khalsa Sikhs wear at all times. Guru Gobind Singh continued the formalisation of the religion, wrote important Sikh texts, enshrined the scripture the Guru Granth Sahib as Sikhism's eternal Guru. Gobind Singh was the only son of Guru Tegh Bahadur, the ninth Sikh guru, Mata Gujri, he was born in Patna, Bihar in the Sodhi Khatri family while his father was visiting Bengal and Assam. His birth name was Gobind Rai, a shrine named Takht Sri Patna Harimandar Sahib marks the site of the house where he was born and spent the first four years of his life.
In 1670, his family returned to Punjab, in March 1672 they moved to Chakk Nanaki in the Himalayan foothills of north India, called the Sivalik range, where he was schooled. His father Guru Tegh Bahadur was petitioned by Kashmiri Pandits in 1675 for protection from the fanatic persecution by Iftikar Khan, an Islamic satrap of the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Tegh Bahadur considered a peaceful resolution by meeting Aurangzeb, but was cautioned by his advisors that his life may be at risk; the young Gobind Rai – to be known as Gobind Singh after 1699 – advised his father that no one was more worthy to lead and make a sacrifice than him. His father made the attempt, but was arrested publicly beheaded in Delhi on 11 November 1675 under the orders of Aurangzeb for refusing to convert to Islam and the ongoing conflicts between Sikhism and the Islamic Empire. After this martyrdom, the young Gobind Rai was installed by the Sikhs as the tenth Sikh Guru on Vaisakhi on 29 March 1676; the education of Guru Gobind Singh continued after he became the 10th Guru, both in reading and writing as well as martial arts such as horse riding and archery.
In 1684, he wrote the Chandi di Var in Punjabi language – a legendary war between the good and the evil, where the good stands up against injustice and tyranny, as described in the ancient Sanskrit text Markandeya Purana. He stayed in Paonta, near the banks of river Yamuna, till 1685. Guru Gobind Singh had three wives: at age 10, he married Mata Jito on 21 June 1677 at Basantgaṛh, 10 km north of Anandpur; the couple had three sons: Jujhar Singh, Zorawar Singh and Fateh Singh. at age 17, he married Mata Sundari on 4 April 1684 at Anandpur. The couple had one son, Ajit Singh. at age 33, he married Mata Sahib Devan on 15 April 1700 at Anandpur. They had no children. Guru Gobind Singh proclaimed her as the Mother of the Khalsa; the life example and leadership of Guru Gobind Singh have been of historical importance to the Sikhs. He institutionalized the Khalsa, who played the key role in protecting the Sikhs long after his death, such as during the nine invasions of Panjab and holy war led by Ahmad Shah Abdali from Afghanistan between 1747 and 1769.
In 1699, the Guru requested the Sikhs to congregate at Anandpur on Vaisakhi. According to the Sikh tradition, he asked for a volunteer from those who gathered, someone willing to sacrifice his head. One came forward; the Guru with a bloody sword. He asked for another volunteer, repeated the same process of returning from the tent without anyone and with a bloodied sword four more times. After the fifth volunteer went with him into the tent, the Guru returned with all five volunteers, all safe, he called them the first Khalsa in the Sikh tradition. Guru Gobind Singh mixed water and sugar into an iron bowl, stirring it with a double-edged sword to prepare what he called Amrit, he administered this to the Panj Pyare, accompanied with recitations from the Adi Granth, thus founding the khande ka pahul of a Khalsa – a warrior community. The Guru gave them a new surname "Singh". After the first five Khalsa had been baptized, the Guru asked the five to baptize him as a Khalsa; this made the Guru the sixth Khalsa, his name changed from Guru Gobind Rai to Guru Gobind Singh.
Guru Gobind Singh initiated the Five K's tradition of the Kesh: uncut hair. Kangha: a wooden comb. Kara: an iron or steel bracelet worn on the wrist. Kirpan: a sword or dagger. Kacchera: short breeches, he announced a code of discipline for Khalsa warriors. Tobacco, eating'halal' meat and adultery were forbidden; the Khalsas agreed to never interact with those who followed rivals or their successors. The co-initiation of men and women from different castes into the ranks of Khalsa institutionalized the principle of equality in Sikhism regardless of one's caste or gender. Guru Gobind Singh's significance to the Sikh tradition has been important, as he institutionalized the Khalsa, resisted the ongoing persecution by the Mughal Empire, continued "the defence of Sikhism and Hinduism against the Muslim assault of Aurangzeb", he introduced ideas that indirectly challenged the discriminatory taxes imposed by Islamic authorities. For example, Aurangzeb had imposed taxes on non-Muslims that were collected from the Sikhs as well, for example the jizya (poll tax on non-
Gulal known as Abeer, is the traditional name given to the coloured powders used for the typical Hindu rituals, in particular for the Holi festival. During this festival, which celebrates love and equality, people throw these powder solutions at each other while singing and dancing. A legend narrates that Lord Krishna complained to his mother about the darkness of his skin compared to that of his consort Radha; as a result, Krishna’s mother smeared colours onto Radha’s face. This explains. In earlier times, Gulal powders were prepared from flowers coming from trees, such as the Indian Coral Tree and the Flame of the Forest, that had medicinal properties, beneficial to the skin. After the advent of synthetic dyes in the middle of 19th century, the disappearance of trees in urban areas and the pursuit of higher profits led to the abandonment of natural colours; the new industrial dyes have been manufactured through chemical processes with non-standard parameters and hence the resulting colours are sometimes toxic for face and skin, causing problems such as eye irritation, skin infection and asthma.
Unsafe products have been sold on the road by small traders, in boxes with labels saying "for industrial use only". The various harmful effects and concerns for the environment generated awareness and encouraged people to celebrate an eco-friendly Holi. For the preparation of Herbal Gulal, lots of safe dyes can be used, such as Turmeric, Indigo or Annatto, which are all ingredients available on the market at moderate prices. For these reasons, it is possible to prepare Gulal at home, as suggested by many websites on the Internet. In the new natural processes to make Herbal Gulal, no salts of any heavy metal have been used and the combination of ingredients provides a powder having soft and supple touch with good sticking capacities to skin; the production profile of dry colour composition is eco-friendly as no toxic ingredients are released under the preparation. In this way, it has been possible to replace synthetic colours with natural ones. Herbal Gulal can be manufactured at higher scale and people who were scared about synthetic powders can now enjoy rituals with no restrictions.
Gulal powder has always had an important role in Hindu culture and has always been used for religious purposes. Besides Holi festival, the use of coloured powders appears in other ceremonies, such as funerals. In this case, in some populations, a particular ritual occurs; the widow puts on all the ornaments she possesses and takes leave of her husband adorning him with all her jewels. Holding a small brass plate with coloured powders, she lets the men participating at the ceremony paint the face of the deceased; this ritual is associated with the one of marriage, in which the bridegroom and the bride anoint themselves with coloured powders for four days before the wedding. This ointment, indeed, is meant to prepare their bodies for conjugal life. Beyond the religious sphere, the consumption of Gulal powder is spread for different uses. One interesting use of this powder has been developed in the field of latent fingerprints. A study by Punjabi University of Patiala shows that the application of Gulal or food colours to latent fingerprints can give clear results.
During this study, few grams of dry colours were taken and sprinkled over different surfaces, such as normal paper, top of CDs, aluminium foil, aluminium sheet. It has been concluded that and available agents are a useful substitute for the decipherment of latent prints. Gulal consumption related to Holi festival has been taken out from the Hindu context and desacralized; the desacralization consists in a distortion of the original meaning of the cultural elements at the base of the Holi ceremony, which has suffered from a disrespectful treatment. Indeed, in the contemporary Western society, Holi festival has become a phenomenon of consumerism, with no longer religious aspects. Throwing Gulal powder has become something cool and fashionable: everybody can buy this powder online and use it to give to its own party an extra point; the main reason why Holi is now so well known outside the Asian continent is the birth of many Holi remakes for commercial purposes. From the beginning of the 2000s, Europeans and Australians started to follow the trend of going to parties that involved throwing coloured powders at each other, in a relaxed and peaceful atmosphere.
Best examples of these remakes are ‘Festival of colors’ and ‘The Color Run’. The latter one known as “The Happiest 5K on the Planet” and born in 2012, is a further alteration of the original festival, since it consists in a five kilometre paint race; this desacralization led to criticisms by natives, because of the over-simplification of one of their most meaningful religious rituals. Moreover, they bemoan the misuse of Holi, the fact that their culture has been profited off, the sexualisation coming from a inappropriate outfit and the devaluation on social networks. Participants to Holi festival remakes, indeed share their coloured pictures on Facebook or Twitter, using hashtags which can remind of the original meaning of the celebration, but that paradoxically blurs it more and more. Indian manufacturers of Holi colours are facing huge losses as Chinese alternatives are selling a lot. A survey reported that Chinese products are more innovative and cheaper by up to 55%, comparing to powders manufactured locally in regions like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat.
The invasion of innovative and fancy Ch
Guru Har Rai
Guru Har Rai revered as the seventh Nanak, was the seventh of ten Gurus of the Sikh religion. He became the Sikh leader at age 14, on 8 March 1644, after the death of his grandfather and sixth Sikh leader Guru Hargobind, he guided the Sikhs for about seventeen years, till his death at age 31. Guru Har Rai is notable for maintaining the large army of Sikh soldiers that the sixth Sikh Guru had amassed, yet avoiding military conflict, he supported the moderate Sufi influenced Dara Shikoh instead of conservative Sunni influenced Aurangzeb as the two brothers entered into a war of succession to the Mughal Empire throne. After Aurangzeb won the succession war in 1658, he summoned Guru Har Rai in 1660 to explain his support for the executed Dara Shikoh. Har Rai sent his elder son Ram Rai to represent him. Aurangzeb kept Ram Rai as hostage, questioned Ram Rai about a verse in the Adi Granth – the holy text of Sikhs at that time. Aurangzeb claimed. Ram Rai changed the verse to appease Aurangzeb instead of standing by the Sikh scripture, an act for which Guru Har Rai is remembered for excommunicating his elder son, nominating his younger son Har Krishan to succeed him.
Har Krishan became the eighth Guru at age 5 after Guru Har Rai's death in 1661. Some Sikh literature spell his name as Hari Rai. Har Rai was born to Baba Gurditta into a Sodhi household, his father died. At age 10, in 1640, Guru Har Rai was married to Mata Kishan Kaur the daughter of Daya Ram, they had the latter of whom became the eighth Guru. Har Rai had brothers, his elder brother Dhir Mal had gained encouragement and support from Shah Jahan, with free land grants and Mughal sponsorship. Dhir Mal attempted to form a parallel Sikh tradition and criticized his grand father and sixth Guru Hargobind; the sixth Guru disagreed with Dhir Mal, designated the younger Har Rai as the successor. Authentic literature about Guru Har Rai life and times are scarce, he left no texts of his own and some Sikh texts composed spell his name as "Hari Rai"; some of the biographies of Guru Har Rai written in the 18th century such as by Kesar Singh Chhibber, the 19th-century Sikh literature are inconsistent. Guru Har Rai provided medical care to Dara Shikoh when he had been poisoned by Mughal operatives.
According to Mughal records, Har Rai provided other forms of support to Dara Shikoh as he and his brother Aurangzeb battled for rights to succession. Aurangzeb won, arrested Dara Shikoh and executed him on charges of apostasy from Islam. In 1660, Aurangzeb summoned Har Rai to appear before him to explain his relationship with Dara Shikoh. In the Sikh tradition, Guru Har Rai was asked why he was helping the Mughal prince Dara Shikoh whose forefathers had persecuted Sikhs and Sikh Gurus. Har Rai is believed to have replied that if a man plucks flowers with one hand and gives it away using his other hand, both hands get the same fragrance, he appointed youngest son Har Krishan as the eighth guru before his death. Guru Har Rai converted many to Sikhism, he started several public singing and scripture recital traditions in Sikhism. The katha or discourse style recitals were added by Guru Har Rai, to the sabad kirtan singing tradition of Sikhs, he added the akhand kirtan or continuous scripture singing tradition of Sikhism, as well as the tradition of jotian da kirtan or collective folk choral singing of scriptures.
The third Sikh leader Guru Amar Das had started the tradition of appointing manji, introduced the dasvandh system of revenue collection in the name of Guru and as pooled community religious resource, the famed langar tradition of Sikhism where anyone, without discrimination of any kind, could get a free meal in a communal seating. The organizational structure that had helped Sikhs to grow and resist the Mughal persecution had created new problems for Guru Har Rai; the donation collectors, some of the Masands led by Dhir Mal – the older brother of Guru Har Rai, all of them encouraged by the support of Shah Jahan, land grants and Mughal administration, had attempted to internally split the Sikhs into competing movements, start a parallel guruship, thereby weaken the Sikh religion. Thus a part of the challenge for Guru Har Rai was to keep Sikhs united, he appointed new masands such as Bhai Jodh, Bhai Gonda, Bhai Nattha, Bhagat Bhagwan, Bhai Pheru, Bhai Bhagat, as the heads of Manji's. Macauliffe, M.
A.. The Sikh Religion: Its Gurus Sacred Writings and Authors. Low Price Publications. ISBN 81-7536-132-8. Singh, Khushwant. A History of the Sikhs: 1469-1839 Vol.1. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-567308-5. Guru Har Rai, Sikhs.org Guru Har Rai, Sikh-History.com Guru Har Rai, Official Website of Gurudwara Shri Guru Har Rai Village Bhungarni
Guru Har Krishan
Guru Har Krishan' was the eighth of the ten Sikh Gurus. At the age of 5, he became the youngest Guru in Sikhism on 7 October 1661, succeeding his father, Guru Har Rai, he died of the disease in 1664 before reaching his 8th birthday. He is known as Bal Guru, sometimes spelled in Sikh literature as Hari Krishan Sahib, he is remembered in the Sikh tradition for saying "Baba Bakale" before he died, which Sikhs interpreted to identify his granduncle Guru Tegh Bahadur as the next successor. Guru Har Krishan Sahib had the shortest reign as Guru, lasting 5 months and 24 days. Har Krishan was born in Kiratpur in northwest Indian subcontinent to Guru Har Rai, his father, Guru Har Rai supported the moderate Sufi influenced Dara Shikoh instead of conservative Sunni influenced Aurangzeb as the two brothers entered into a war of succession to the Mughal Empire throne. After Aurangzeb won the succession war in 1658, he summoned Guru Har Rai in 1660 to explain his support for the executed Dara Shikoh. Guru Har Rai sent his elder son Ram Rai to represent him.
Aurangzeb kept the 13 year old Ram Rai as hostage, questioned Ram Rai about a verse in the Adi Granth – the holy text of Sikhs. Aurangzeb claimed. Ram Rai changed the verse to appease Aurangzeb instead of standing by the Sikh scripture, an act for which Guru Har Rai excommunicated his elder son, nominated the younger Har Krishan to succeed as the next Guru of Sikhism. Aurangzeb meanwhile rewarded Ram Rai, patronizing him with land grants in Dehra Dun region of the Himalayas. A few years after Guru Har Krishan assumed the role of Sikh leader, Aurangzeb summoned the young Guru to his court, with an apparent plan to replace him with his elder brother Ram Rai as the Sikh Guru. However, Har Rai contracted smallpox when he arrived in Delhi and his meeting with Aurangzeb was cancelled. On his deathbed, Har Krishan said, "Baba Bakale", died in 1664; the Sikh religious organization interpreted those words to mean that the next Guru is to be found in Bakale village, which they identified as Guru Tegh Bahadur, the ninth Guru of Sikhism.
Authentic literature with more details about Guru Har Krishan's life and times are scarce and not well recorded. Some of biographies about Guru Har Krishan about who his mother was, were written in the 18th century such as by Kesar Singh Chhibber, as well as in the 19th century, these are inconsistent. Sikhs.org Sikh-History.com
Guru Arjan 15 April 1563 – 30 May 1606) was the first of the two Gurus martyred in the Sikh faith and the fifth of the ten total Sikh Gurus. He compiled the first official edition of the Sikh scripture called the Adi Granth, which expanded into the Guru Granth Sahib, he was born in Goindval, in the Punjab, the youngest son of Bhai Jetha, who became Guru Ram Das, Mata Bhani, the daughter of Guru Amar Das. He was the first Guru in Sikhism to be born into a Sikh family. Guru Arjan led Sikhism for a quarter of a century, he completed the construction of Darbar Sahib at Amritsar, after the fourth Sikh Guru founded the town and built a pool. Guru Arjan compiled the hymns of previous Gurus and of other saints into Adi Granth, the first edition of the Sikh scripture, installed it in the Harimandir Sahib. Guru Arjan reorganized the Masands system initiated by Guru Ram Das, by suggesting that the Sikhs donate, if possible, one-tenth of their income, goods or service to the Sikh organization; the Masand not only collected these funds but taught tenets of Sikhism and settled civil disputes in their region.
The dasvand financed the building of langars. Guru Arjan was arrested under the orders of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir and asked to convert to Islam, he refused, was tortured and executed in 1606 CE. Historical records and the Sikh tradition are unclear whether Guru Arjan was executed by drowning or died during torture, his martyrdom is considered a watershed event in the history of Sikhism. It is remembered as Shaheedi Divas of Guru Arjan in May or June according to the Nanakshahi calendar released by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee in 2003. Arjan was born in Goindval to Jetha Sodhi. Bibi Bhani was the daughter of Guru Amar Das, her husband Jetha Sodhi came to be known as Guru Ram Das. Arjan's birthplace site is now memorialized as the Gurdwara Chaubara Sahib, he had two brothers: Mahadev. Various Sikh chroniclers give his birth year as 1553 or 1563, the latter is accepted by scholarly consensus as the actual year of birth with 15 April as the accepted birth date. Arjan spent the first 11 years of his life in Goindwal and the next seven years with his father in Ramdaspur.
Per Sikh tradition, he had stayed for two years in Lahore during his youth after being sent by his father to attend the wedding of his first cousin Sahari Mal's son as well as to establish a Sikh congregation. He was appointed as the Sikh Guru in 1581 after the death of his father. Ram Das was a Khatri of the Sodhi sub-caste. With Arjan's succession, the Guruship remained in the Sodhi family of Ram Das. Arjan had Prithi Chand and Mahadev. Guru Ram Das chose the youngest, to succeed him as the fifth Sikh Guru. Mahadev, the middle brother chose the life of an ascetic, his choice of Arjan as successor, as throughout most of the history of Sikh Guru successions, led to disputes and internal divisions among the Sikhs. The stories in the Sikh tradition about the succession dispute around Guru Arjan are inconsistent. In one version, Prithi Chand is remembered in the Sikh tradition as vehemently opposing Guru Arjan, creating a faction Sikh community; the Sikhs following Guru Arjan called the Prithi Chand faction as Minas, who are alleged to have attempted to assassinate young Hargobind, befriended Mughal agents.
However, the second version, found in alternate competing texts written by the Prithi Chand led Sikh faction contradict this version. They offer a different explanation for the attempt on Hargobind's life, present the elder son of Guru Ram Das as devoted to his younger brother Guru Arjan; the competing texts do acknowledge their disagreement. They state Prithi Chand left Amritsar, became the Sahib Guru after the martyrdom of Guru Arjan and one who disputed the succession of Guru Hargobind as the next Guru; the mainstream Sikh tradition recognised Guru Arjan as the fifth Guru, Hargobind as the sixth Guru. Arjan, at age 18, became the fifth Guru in 1581 inheriting the title from his father. After his execution by the Muslim officials of the Mughal Empire, his son Hargobind became the sixth Guru in 1606 CE. Guru Arjan's martyrdom in Mughal custody has been one of the defining though controversial issues in Sikh history. Most Mughal historians considered Guru Arjan's execution as a political event, stating that the Sikhs had become formidable as a social group, Sikh Gurus became involved in the Punjabi political conflicts.
A similar theory floated in early 20th-century, asserts that this was just a politically-motivated single execution. According to this theory, there was an ongoing Mughal dynasty dispute between Jahangir and his son Khusrau suspected of rebellion by Jahangir, wherein Guru Arjan blessed Khusrau and thus the losing side. Jahangir was jealous and outraged, therefore he ordered the Guru's execution; the Sikh tradition has a competing view. It states that the Guru's execution was a part of the ongoing persecution of the Sikhs by Islamic authorities in the Mughal Empire, that the Mughal rulers of Punjab were alarmed at the growth of the Panth. According to Jahangir's autobiography Tuzk-e-Jahangiri, too many people were becoming persuaded by Guru Arjan's teachings and if Guru Arjan did not become a Muslim, the Sikh Panth had to be extinguished. In 1606 CE, the Guru was imprisoned in Lahore Fort, where by some accounts he was tortured and executed, by other accounts the method of his death remains unresolved.
The traditional Sikh account states that the Mughal emperor Jahangir demanded a fine of 200,000 rupees and demanded that Guru Arjan erase some of the hymns in the text that he found offensive. The Gu
Anand Karaj is the Sikh marriage ceremony, meaning "Blissful Union" or "Joyful Union", introduced by Guru Amar Das. The four laavaan were composed by Guru Ram Das, it was legalised in India through the passage of the Anand Marriage Act of 1909, but is now governed by the Sikh Reht Maryada, issued by the Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee. In a recent verdict of the Sri Akal Takht Sahib, i.e. a, Anand Karaj can only take place in a Gurudwara. Any Amritdhari Sikh may perform the marriage ceremony. In 2012, India passed The Anand Marriage Bill, after which Sikhs are able to register their marriages under the Anand Marriage Act instead of the Hindu Marriage Act, with President Pratibha Patil giving her assent to a bill passed by Parliament on 7 June 2012 in the budget session. Pakistan declared that it would pass the Sikh Anand Marriage Act in 2007 and a Draft was prepared, but this Draft Act was never passed. In 2018, Pakistani's Punjab Provincial Assembly passed the Punjab Sikh Anand Karaj Marriage Act 2018.
The following are other important points that must be adhered to by the Sikh couple and their families: Marriage is a partnership of equals. No consideration is to be given to social status, race or lineage. No dowry is allowed. No day is considered holier above any other, hence no astrological considerations are to be made and no superstitions are to be observed in fixing the date of the wedding; the religious ceremony is to take place only in a gurdwara. The cost of the wedding is to be shared between the two sides as as possible; the Anand Karaj ceremony is a joyous and festive event in which families and friends from both sides are involved. Most Sikh weddings are completed before noon. Following the ceremony is a langar or a formal lunch; the wedding event may spill into the next day. Most families combine the wedding ceremony with the engagement ceremony called the "kurmai", held just before the wedding vows or laavan; the engagement ceremony can be held as a separate event on a different day.
It is conducted in the gurdwara or at the home of the groom-to-be. It involves ardas, kirtan and langar. In the "sagan" ceremony, the groom is presented with a karar, Indian sweets, fresh fruits, dried fruits and nuts; the bride-to-be's family in turn are presented with sweets. "Anand Karaj" "joyful ceremonial occasion or proceedings" is the name given to the Sikh marriage ceremony. For Sikhs, married status is the ideal. Sikhism does not repudiate vows of celibacy, renunciation or the sannyasin state, but it does discourage it and advocates marital life as the best way of living. Most marriages among Sikhs, as in India and Pakistan as a whole, have been arranged, it is regarded as a duty for the parents to arrange for, contribute towards, the marriage of their offspring. Prem Sumarag, an eighteenth-century work on the Sikh social code, lays down: When a girl attains maturity, it is incumbent upon her parents to look for a suitable match for her, it is neither proper to marry a young girl. The daughter of a Sikh should be given in marriage to a Sikh.
If a man is a believer in Sikhism, is humble by nature, earns by honest means, with him matrimony may be contracted without a question and without consideration for wealth and riches. Today, it is accepted. To show respect to their parents, seeking their approval is common. Traditionally, the parents of the man ask the parents of the woman for their daughter's hand in marriage; the history of the Anand marriage ceremony is traced back to the time of Guru Amar Das, who composed the long 40-stanza hymn "Anand", in the Ramkali measure, suitable to be sung or recited on all occasions of religious importance. His successor, Guru Ram Das, composed a four-stanza hymn, "Lavan", recited and sung to solemnize nuptials. During the time of Maharaja Ranjit Singh and his successors, this ceremony fell into partial disuse under the renewed Brahmanical influence at court as well as in society; the Namdhari reform movement of the mid-19th century made the practice of Anand ceremony a vital plank in its programme as did the more influential Singh Sabha.
But there was opposition from priestly classes. The Sikh form of wedding ceremonial received legal sanction through the Anand Marriage Act, adopted in 1909; the core of the Anand Karaj is the'lavan', wherein shabads are sung with the bride and groom circumambulating the Guru Granth Sahib. The ceremony serves to provide the foundational principles towards a successful marriage and places the marriage within the context of unity with God. Guru Ram Das Ji composed the four stanzas of Lavan to be sung and recited as the core of the Anand Karaj. In 1579, the fifth Guru, Guru Arjan Dev Ji and Mata Ganga were the first couple to be married through the Anand Karaj ceremony; the ceremony is now universally observed by the Sikhs. The Assent of the President of India was received to the Anand Marriage Amendment Act 2012 on 7th June 2012; the Act paved the way for the validation of Sikh traditional
The Ardās is a set prayer in Sikhism. It is a part of worship service in a Gurdwara, daily rituals such as the opening the Guru Granth Sahib for prakash or closing it for sukhasan in larger Gurdwaras, closing of congregational worship in smaller Gurdwaras, rites-of-passages such as with the naming of child or the cremation of a loved one, daily prayer by devout Sikhs and any significant Sikh ceremonies. An Ardas consists of three parts; the first part recites the virtues of the ten Gurus of Sikhism from Guru Nanak to Guru Gobind Singh, starting with lines from Chandi di Var from the Dasam Granth. The second part recites the triumphs of the Khalsa and petition; the third salutes the divine name. The first and the third part are set and cannot be changed, while the second part may vary, be shortened and include a supplication such as seeking divine help or blessing in dealing with daily problems, but is in agreed form. While it is sung, the audience or the Sikh devotee stands, with hands clasped in the folded namaste gesture, many with bowed headed, with some saying "Waheguru" after certain sections.
Ardas is attributed to the founder of the Khalsa and the 10th Guru of Sikhism. The root of the word Ardas is related to the Sanskrit word ard which means "request, beg", it is related to the Persian word arzdasht which means a written "petition made by an inferior to a superior". The Ardās is always done standing up with folded hands and is preceded by the eighth stanza of the fourth ashtapadi of the bani Sukhmani, beginning Tu Thakur Tum Peh Ardaas, it consists of three parts: The beginning of the Ardās is set by the tenth Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh and may not be altered or omitted. It appears as the opening passage of Var Sri Bhagauti Ji Ki; the first part recites the virtues of the Sikh Gurus. The second part is several paragraphs recounting Sikh symbols, places or worship and values significant and related to Khalsa; this may be changed by reciting a "short ardaas". The Sikh devotee may include a personal prayer such as "Waheguru, please bless me in the task that I am about to undertake" when starting a new task, help me with this problem, or add any personal petition for God.
The third salutes the divine name. This part may not be altered or omitted; the end of the Ardaas is set and may not be altered or omitted. The "Ardās" of Sikhism was first composed by Guru Gobind Singh, he fixed the first eight lines and the last section, these are considered unalterable in Sikhism. The second section has been fluid, revised extensively and by Tat Khalsa in the 20th century; the Sikh Rahit Maryada has published an approved version of the entire Ardas. Chandi di Var Sikh scriptures Sikh Rehat Maryada: The code of Sikh conduct & conventions, Dharam Parchar Committee n.d. Amritsar. MacAuliffe, M A 1909, The Sikh religion: its gurus, sacred writings and authors, The Clarendon Press, Oxford. SGPC