Guru Nanak Jayanti- Significance and Teachings
Guru Nanak Jayanti, also known as Guru Purab is the most popular festival for Sikhs. The festival is celebrated as the birthday of Guru Nanak Sahib, the first of Ten Gurus. He was born on 15 April 1469 in Rai Bhoi Ki Talwandi (now Nankana Sahib, Pakistan). His father was the tax collector in his village. Guru Nanak never had an interest in the materialistic world. He loved reality. He fought for various superstitions and also stood up for social welfare. He was against untouchability and discrimination. From his childhood, he was very interested in spiritual practices. He also taught his followers to concentrate on spiritual practices. He had an interest in divine studies and religion. People considered that Nanak was adorned with divine grace. He later married Sulakhni on the 24th of September, 1487. He had two sons later, Sri Chand and Lakshmi Das.
Why is Guru Nanak Jayanti celebrated?
Guru Nanak Jayanti is celebrated every year in different parts of the world in the memory of Guru Nanak Dev. Sikhs celebrate the festival with happiness and joy. The day is celebrated to remember and follow all the teachings of Guru Nanak. The day is also celebrated to pay gratitude to Guru Nanak for his great contribution in bringing peace and harmony among people. The main motive of Guru Nanak is to spread peace and harmony. Guru Nanak started the provision of arranging a langar kitchen for everyone to remove inequality that existed in the society and also to promote peace and brotherhood among all. Guru Nanak Jayanti is observed as a public holiday in India.
Significance of Guru Nanak Jayanti-
This year, the date of Guru Nanak Jayanti is falling on 19 November and is the 552nd anniversary of Guru Nanak. 15 days before the festival, Sikhs take out Prabhat Pheris by singing hymns and verses. Two days before Gurupurab, non-stop reading of Guru Granth Sahib is also done. This 48-hour reading is also called Akhand Path. A day before Gurupurab, a procession called Nagar Kirtan is organized. Guru Nanak Jayanti starts at 4am with Amrit Vela. After the morning prayers, Langar is organised for everyone.
Teachings of Guru Nanak Dev-
Guru Nanak gave different important lessons to society. He contributed a lot to abolish the discrimination on the basis of gender, caste, religio etc. He believed in reality and humanity. Some of the teachings are-
- God is omnipresent ie, present in each and everything in this world.
- The people who pray to God are devotees and do not fear anything.
- Both Genders are equal. Women are most respected as they give birth to the kings.
- Charity is very important. We should contribute some part of our earnings to those who are not capable of the same.
- There should be no discrimination on the basis of rich and poor, caste etc.
- God has no form and is not subject to birth and death. God has no enmity with anyone.
- We should live our life with honesty.
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