Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Insignia of the Khalsa: Khanda.

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 The Khanda (Punjabiਖੰਡਾkhaṇḍā) is one of most important symbols of Sikhism. This is emphasized by the fact that many Sikh flags, including the Nishan Sahib have the Khanda on them. It is a collection of four weapons commonly used by Sikhs at the time of Guru Gobind Singh.

In the centre of the insignia is the two-edged sword which symbolises the Creative Power of God which controls the destiny of the whole universe. It is the Sovereign Power over life and death. One edge of the Sword symbolises divine justice, which chastises and punishes the wicked oppressors; the other edge symbolises Freedom, and Authority governed by moral and spiritual values.

On the outside of the two-edged sword, we can see two swords:
  • On the left is the Sword of Spiritual Sovereignty (Piri);
  • On the right is the Sword of Political Sovereignty (Miri)

There must always be a balance between the two, and this balance is emphasised by a circle inside. This circle is what is called a Chakra or Chakkar. The Chakra is a symbol of all embracing Divine Manifestation, including everything and wanting nothing, without beginning or end, neither first nor last, timeless, Absolute. It is the symbol of oneness, of Unicity of Justice, Humanity and the Immortality. Almost all Sikh warriors used to wear it in the eighteenth century, and Nihangs of today still do.

The Chakra / Chakkar which was worn by the great martyr Baba Deep Singh is still preserved in the sanctum sanctorium of theAkal Takht. On it is inscribed the Mool Mantar and that is what it symbolises.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Sri Harmandir Sahib..

Sri Guru Arjan Sahib got Sri Harmandir Sahib built in the midst
of the sarovar (tank) at the lowest level. Unlike other temples
where the devotees have to climb up to offer their obeisance, 
here the devotees have to step down to offer their homage.

 This unique temple of God has been built at the lowest level
 because it represents the humility of Guru Nanak.
 Humility Incarnate Guru Arjan selected the lowest level
 because this was to be the eternal seat of the Prophet of Humility,
 Sri Guru Nanak Sahib (manifest Sri Guru Granth Sahib).

Garibi Gada Hamari, 
Khana Sagal Rein Chhari..
Is Aage Ko Na Tikai Vekari!!
 Sri Guru Granth Sahib (628)

“Humility is my mace; becoming the dust of everybody’s feet is my sword. 
No evil doer can dare withstand these weapons”.
For a sikh, the Guru is the soul of his own soul.

Dasan Das Rein Dasan Ki, Jan Ki Tehal Kamawon,
Sarab Sookh Badyai Nanak Jiwon Mukhon Blawo

                                                         Sri Guru Granth Sahib (529)

“I have become dust of the feet of the slaves of His slaves and I serve His servants. 
Thus, I have achieved true joy and honour, I live by uttering His Holy Name”  

In this Great Temple, the four doors in all the four directions were thrown 
open to all the religions, to rich and poor, to high and low, and to the 
out-castes. All were welcome in this House of God. The poor, the low, 
the meak, the oppressed and the humble felt the presence of God face to face.
All religions have produced true lovers of God. A muslim mystic,
a true lover of God, Hazrat Mian Mir, who had become a legend in his
very life-time, was invited to lay the foundation stone of this
Universal Temple of God, further signifying that this Temple of God 
belonged to all. On Dharma, religion, Sri Guru Arjan Sahib clarifies :

Sarb Dharam Mehn Sreisht Dharam..
Har Ko Nam Jap Nirmal Karam
                                            Sri Guru Granth Sahib (266)

The best of all Religions is the yearning for the Divine and purity of deeds.