What was Guru Tegh Bahadur famous?
Hindus have history going back more than 5,000 years, and during its long history, some off-shoots came about.
One religious sect was Sikhism, which is around 550 years, which was initiated by Guru Nanakji.
During the occupation of the Moghuls, Punjabi Hindus brought up their first born son as a Sikh, so that he could be enlisted to fight against the Muslim rulers.
Although Guru Nanakji’s original ethos was that there’s no Hindu & no Muslim, all men are One, this concept had to change due to the forced conversions of both Sikhs & Hindus by the Muslim rulers to Islam. Sikhs became a Martial arm to fight against the atrocities.
Today, I would like to pay tribute to one of the most important Sikh Guru, who was perhaps one of the most fearless, but compassionate man, who was prepared to give up his life for the oppressed. And that’s the Tegh Bahadurji. He was the Ninth Sikh Guru, who was also known as Srisht-di-Chadar (Protector of humanity).
He was born on 1st Apil, 1621 and his name at birth was Tyag Mal Ji, and was renamed Tegh Bahadur Ji, due to his bravery at Battle of Kartarpur at the age of 9.
A poet, a thinker, and a warrior, Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji carried forward the light of sanctity and divinity of Sikh Gurus.
He travelled extensively in different parts of the country, to preach the teachings of Nanak, the first Sikh guru.
The places he visited and stayed in, became sites of Sikh temples.
During his travels, he spread the Sikh ideas and message, as well as started community water wells and langars (community kitchen).
He founded the city of Anandpur Sahib in the foothills of Himalayas. His spiritual writings, detailing varied themes such as, the nature of God, human attachments, body, mind, sorrow, dignity, service, death, and deliverance, are registered in the form of 116 poetic hymns in the sacred scripture, the Sri Guru Granth Sahibji.
Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji was openly encouraging Sikhs to, “be fearless in their pursuit of just society: he who holds none in fear, nor is afraid of anyone, is acknowledged as a man of true wisdom”, which is stated in Adi Granth.
How Guru Tegh Bahadur died?
In the late 17th century, Mughal emperor Aurangzeb imposed the Sharia law across his empire and an additional jizya tax on all non-Muslims. He was forcibly converting Hindus & Sikhs to Islam.
In 1657, Some Kashmiri Pandits fled these forced conversions and sought refuge with Guru Tegh Bahadur.
On the insistence of his son who would eventually be known as Guru Gobind Singh, the ninth guru travelled to Delhi to dissuade Aurangzeb from this religious imposition.
Aurangzeb offered Guru Tegh Bahadur “to abandon his faith, and convert to Islam”.
Guru Tegh Bahadur and his three Hindu companions– Bhai Mati Das, Bhai Sati Das, Bhai Dyal Das refused.
They were arrested & tortured for many weeks. And then, they were publicly beheaded in central Delhi.
According to sources, Bhai Jaita Ji took the Guru’s head to Anandpur, the city the guru had founded, while Bhai Lakhi Shah Vanjara Ji took the body to his village, Rakab Ganj, and cremated the body by setting his own house on fire, to avoid arousing the suspicion of Mughal soldiers.
Sis Ganj Gurudawara & Rakab Ganj Sahib gurudawara, in Delhi mark the places of execution and cremation of his body.
Tegh Bahadurji has been remembered for giving up his life for freedom of religion, reminding Sikhs and non-Muslims in India to follow and practice their beliefs without fear of persecution and forced conversions by Muslims.
The British later conquered India by their “divide & rule” system, & one of the practises they developed was to create friction & division between the Hindus & Sikhs.
We all have to remember we have the same ancestors, and scientifically the same DNA & genotype!
I hope you liked this snipped about how Hinduism has survived and continues to make such a huge impact on world peace & progress today.