Sikhs, across the world are celebrating the birthday of the first of the 10 Gurus, Guru Nanak. On this day, Gurudwaras are illuminated; teachings from Guru Granth Sahib read and processions, carried out. The followers of Guru Nanak, abiding by his teachings, donate clothes and distribute food to the needy on this day. Sikhs round the year do ‘sewa’ or service at the Gurudwara by volunteering for some or the other job like cooking or cleaning. However, on Gurupurab along with taking up these jobs, people also voluntarily serve milk to people. The followers of Guru Nanak set up ‘chabeel’ or stalls on the streets and offer sweetened milk to people. The festival of Gurupurab is all about serving and contributing to the society. An example of this is the Bangla Sahib Gurudwara in Delhi which dishes out 10,000 meals a day in ‘langer’, without any cost. The practise of serving ‘langer’ is followed in Gurudwaras across the world, be it Australia, Canada, Germany or France.
The birth of the founder of this religion is cherished around the globe. Here are three lesser known facts about Guru Nanak Devji
1. We all know that Guru Nanak was much fascinated by Kabir and that he believed in Sufism but not many know that he thought differently right from his childhood. It is believed that Guru Nanak as a child refused to wear the holy thread of ‘Janeu’ saying that the thread is a physical entity and could be broken, burnt, soiled or even lost and offered no security.
2. It is widely known that Guru Nanak Dev ji, in order to spread his message of love and peace traversed through India and the Middle East. But, this tale from Guru Nanak’s life which left Kazi Rukan-ud-din of Mecca stunned is known to many. As the story goes, Guru Nanak went to Mecca and slept with his feet towards the Kabba mosque, when the Kazi found out about it, he got angry and objected to the act. To this, Guru Nanak replied that it is not possible for him to turn his feet in a direction which did not have God or God’s house implying that God, is everywhere.
— ANI (@ANI_news) November 14, 2016
3. Guru Nanak spread the message of peace, love and brotherhood throughout his life. However, in the holy scripture Guru Granth Sahib, he talks of three things that one must practise – Vand Chhakkna, Kirat Karna and Naam Japna. Where Vand Chhakkna is about sharing with others and helping those in need, Kirat Karna, about making a living honestly and Naam Japna is about taking God’s name and remembering him at all times.