Guru Nanak Jayanti in 2013
Guru Nanak Jayanti in 2013 is going to be celebrated on 17th of November 2013. Festival of Guru Nanak Jayanti is celebrated as the birth anniversary of first Sikh Guru – Guru Nanak. Let's now know all about Guru Nanak Jayanti.
About Guru Nanak Jayanti
Festival of Guru Nanak Jayanti is also known as Prakash Utsav and Gurupurab. Apart from Sikhs, other followers of Guru Nanak and Nanakpanthi Hindus also became the part of this festival. Almost all Sikh festivals are celebrated as the birth anniversaries of their ten pious Gurus. Festival of celebrating birthday of Sikh Guru is considered as Gurpurb.
Who was Guru Nanak?
While celebrating Guru Nanak Jayanti in 2013, it is a good idea to know about Guru Nanak and his teachings. Guru Nanak Dev is the founder of Sikhism and hence he is known as the first Guru of Sikhs. He was born on 15th of April 1469 at Rai-Bhoi-Di Talwandi, which is now at Shekhupura, a district of Pakistan and now known as Nankana Sahib. According to traditional Hindu lunar calendar, his birthday is celebrated on Kartik Poornima (full Moon night in Hindu month Kartik). If considered from Gregorian calendar, Guru Nanak birthday usually falls in the month of November. However, the date varies from year to year in Gregorian calendar because of the Hindu lunar calendar.
Guru Nanak Jayanti Celebration
The celebration of Guru Nanak Jayanti is almost same everywhere, only hymns differ from region to region. The festival of Guru Nanak Jayanti starts with beautiful Prabhat Pheri.
Prabhat Pheri is the event of Guru Nanak Jayanti festival in which people walk on street in groups at 4am and visit house of Sikhs. Event of Prabhat Feri begins from Gurudwara. People make the environment spiritually ecstatic while singing hymns and carrying lamps as well as some musical instruments.
At most of the Gurudwaras, Akhand Path of Guru Granth Sahib is organized two days before the main festival. Akhand Path is the continuous recitation of Guru Granth Sahib till 48 hours. Just a day before the main festival, Nagarkirtans are organized. Panj Pyares lead this procession. Most of you must not be aware of Panj Pyare. So, here we tell you.
Literal meaning of Panj Pyare is 5 beloved. As per the legend, Guru Nanak crowned five men as Panj Pyare. Since then, 5 men are always selected to be the Panj Pyare.
Panj Pyares are the five men who are the purest men of this religion, the protectors of Sikhism.
Legend Behind The Evolution of Panj Pyare
Guru Nanak Dev called a meeting to gather all the Sikhs from different corners of India. When all of them reached there, Guru Nanak called for a man who would sacrifice his life for the welfare of humanity. He called for the man who can sacrifice his life to symbolize that we are not scared of death. One man stood up. Guru Nanak took him in a small tent behind him. Further he came out with his sword red in blood. He then called on for another volunteer and everytime came out with a bloody sword. This process kept on moving till the fifth man. Finally, after bringing fifth man to the tent, he came out with all five men alive and not hurt at all. He then baptized them with the holy water using his sword and crowned them the holiest of the holy. These 5 men were named as Panj Pyare. He then asked them to baptize him too. Hence, Panj Pyare came into existence. Since then, custom of selection of Panj Pyare is being followed for the selection of the holiest of holy.
Guru Nanak Jayanti – Nagarkirtan
Nagarkirtan is also a major event of the festival of Guru Nanak Jayanti. The Panj Pyares lead this procession holding a flag called Nishan Sahib and Palki (Palanquin) of Guru Granth Sahib. A team of devotees follow them while singing beautiful hymns in chorus. During this procession, various arts are displayed like mock battles using weapons and martial arts, to name a few. Overall, this event adds power to the glory of Sikh religion.
Similarly, there are many other events that are followed during Gurupurab. It keeps the zeal of Sikhs alive in their hearts. Guru Nanak Jayanti is incredibly a unique festival. Be a part of it and experience the glory of Sikhism. Happy Guru Nanak Jayanti 2013 – Happy Gurupurab 2013!