Saturday, November 24, 2007

The story of a mystic…

He was born in a small rustic town in the Punjab province of Pakistan. He came at the time when Muslim rulers were ruling a predominantly Hindu country and the tension between the two religions were bordering on a break-down. He wandered around the world from an early age influencing people from all walks of life. His stories known as sakhis are still part of folk-lore of Punjab on both sides of the border.

Gurudwara Nankana Sahib in Punjab province of Pakistan where the mystic was born

One of his most famous sakhis that my Mom used to narrate me during those hot summer evenings of Jodhpur was when He left his house to go around the world. He was very close to his sister and he promised her that when she will remember him from her heart, he will come back to meet her. One day when she was making roti, it puffed and she started crying because she remembered how her brother loved puffed rotis and next thing she knew He standing outside the door asking her to serve the roti before it went cold. Maybe because I never had a sister, I always found this story the most heartwarming of all his sakhis.

Bibi Nanki, the mystic's sister, saying him goodbye before he left for his travel

He literally traveled around the world from Pakistan to South India to Sikkim to Kashmir to Ladakh to Tibet to Mecca to Iran to Iraq. Like a true mystic he learned from the world around him and passed his wisdom to his followers. He saw how people were discriminating around the world with each other. The world was divided between castes, between Brahmin and Shudras, Shias and Sunnis. Religion was being used around the world to divide people more than unite them. He himself believed in Raam as much as he believed in Allah.

The mystic with his two followers, Bala (a hindu) and Mardana (a muslim), on his numerous travels

Influence of women on his life started from the love he shared for his sister. His view of women can be rightly summed from one of his writings, where he said, “From woman, man is born; within woman, man is conceived; to woman he is engaged and married. Woman becomes his friend; through woman, the future generations come. When his woman dies, he seeks another woman; to woman he is bound. So why call her bad? From her, kings are born. From woman, woman is born; without woman, there would be no one at all. O Nanak, only the True Lord is without a woman.”

His stories have remained but his teachings have been forgotten. His followers are now more interested in saving the religion rather than understanding his teachings. The tension between Hindus and Muslims have only increased with time. While His remains, which turned to flowers when Hindus wanted to cremate his body and Muslims wanted to bury his body, still bloom in another rustic town of Pakistan.

Gurudwara Darbar Shib, Kartarpur, Pakistan, where the mystic turned into flowers

Happy Guru Nanak Jayanti !!


Blogger Reema said...

.. and for once, im here FIRST!! :D

10:30 PM  
Blogger Reema said...

good one! i especcially love the quote abt women :)

10:40 PM  
Blogger The Bhandari's said...

Lovely saakhi, thanks for sharing it. A very happy Guru Nanak Jayanti to you too :)

1:25 AM  
Blogger hope said...

Beautiful Champ!!
uii i mean beautiful post.. :p loved it.. sp those words about woman.. wow!!
Hope you had a wonderful weekend Champ *smiles*

7:51 PM  
Blogger Ekta said...

Gurpurab diya lakh lakh vadaiyaan ji!!!

Hope you enjoyed langar :-)

btw, as a kid (even now tho) I used to love listening to sakhis.

9:24 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Happy Gurupurab...

i know am a little late, but then I always am... nothing new abt that, right?

btw, how do u celebrate Gurupurab?

12:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very good Blog

8:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great.I had never heard of him and its great that you shared his throught with us..
Take care

2:48 AM  
Blogger Marlee said...


Yes, the quote on women is summed up so well!

11:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

lovely reading & thanks very much for every culture it is almost the same, where we are forgetting the teachings of the great saints....Happy Gurupurab mate!

2:57 AM  
Blogger Ricky said...

reema - Yes, you are first :D


the bhandari's - :-)

Aapko bhi :-)

hope - Thanks :-)

Champ is beautiful too na ;-)

5:45 PM  
Blogger Ricky said...

mehak - Tuhanu vee :-)

Langar was good. Yea, I used to love hearing them from Mom and Nanajee :-) Haven't heard them for a while.

anks - Aapko bhi :-)

It doesn't matter if you are late as long as you are here.

In India, Mom would do path and then we would light candles in Gurudware or home and then light phuljhari and all. Very much like Diwali.

5:48 PM  
Blogger Ricky said...

anonymous - Thanks!!

mona - Hi Mona, Its my pleasure. Keep visiting and take care you too.

marlee - You too and as long as you are here, its all good :-)

kalyan - You are welcome. Yea, its the same everywhere, fighting over trivial matters. You too Happy Guruparab.

5:54 PM  
Blogger Modish Moodishta said...

you touched sth in me with this post. when i was lil, i went to Harmandir Sahib and my uncle bought me a comic on all the gurus and their lifes. To say that it had a profound effect onme, is an understatement... I began to understand and appreciate the beauty of my religion; felt proud of being a sikh;

And thanks so much - for the picture of Nankana Sahib.. :) thanks soo much :)

10:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is a nice way of remembering what one religion stands for..

4:09 AM  

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