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|14-Guru Granth Saahib|
14-Gur Granth Saahib
The Guru Granth Saahib is the Holy book of the Sikh religion. It was written in the 16th century. Having been created more recently compared to the other books, it is also closer to the humankind in many respects. Which means that in addition to being full of spiritual teachings it also includes other truths which a common man needs to know. It contains less of biographical parables, and more of knowledge. Any book of knowledge or holy book becomes a classic only if it talks of the mind and deeds of human beings. Its other feature is that this Granth is not the utterance of any one Guru or one prophet or one great man.
Just about five centuries ago the fifth Sikh Guru Arjun Dev Jee started editing the Guru Granth Saahib in the beginning of the 16th century. He completed it in four years. It was first placed in Shree Hari Mandir Sahib at Amritsar and Baabaa Buddha was appointed the first priest. The Granth includes the verses of the first five Sikh Guru and the poetry of saints, devotees, dervishes, experienced balladeers. In all, verses of 36 poets were included in Guru Granth Saahib. Later Guru Gobind Singh Jee included the poetry of the ninth Guru Tegh Bahadur Jee in the Granth. This holy book consists of 1,430 pages and the poetry has been set on 30 Raag. It starts with Shree Raag. It has a total of 5,894 poems of which 937 have been written by devotees. Verses of 11 Minstrels also form a part of it. The verses of Guru Arjun Dev Jee are the most, their number being 2,300.
Why Guru Granth Was
Guru Arjun Dev Jee, who collected the truth of the ages in the form of verse in the Granth, perceived like all other Guru that unity of humankind was the biggest need of the day in order to fight the dark forces at the national and international level and to create a common brotherhood. And although the mission was welfare of one and all, the dark forces of hypocrisy and terror could not be represented in it.
The religion depicted in Guru Granth Sahib is based on experience and belief which requires that religion be reflected in daily life. Harmony of the mind, utterances and deeds is the main sign of spiritualism.
All the verses of the Granth are set on 30 ragas such as Shree Raag, Aasaa, Goojaree, Dev Gaandhaaree, Sorath, Dhanaashree, Todee, Soohee, Bhairav, Malhaar, Kalyaan, Jayajayavantee, Raamkalee, etc. The poetic images in the Guru Granth Saahib depict the life of people of Panjaab and India. The Guru and their followers have based their poetry on the social, religious and political life of the people. Another literary significance of Guru Granth Saahib lies in the fact that all the moods such as calm, beauty, compassion, awe, anger, heroism, surprise, wit have been widely used in it.
Of course, there can be different opinions on the influence of Guru Granth Saahib in today's world, society and the times. However, one can say that because of the overriding role of politics in the modern social and religious life, the sayings of the Guru are also being twisted to suit the situation. The Sikh society is ridden by ancient and Braahman traditions and mores. Religion has become decadent. Different sects have also proliferated, due to which worship is being turned from a spiritual experience into more of a ritual.
Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/06
Updated on 11/17/11