Tat Gurmat Gyan Amrit Sanchar _ Seminar Objectives _ Listening attentively, Understanding thoroughly May well bring life changing benefits! INTRODUCTION Amrit Sanchar _ Q: Is it necessary for a Sikh to go through the Amrit Sanchar ceremony ? There is no such instruction in the Guru Granth Sahib. Therefore where is the evidence for this? What authority is there for this? _ Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 1 _ What is Amrit Sanchar? _ The Amrit Sanchar is a Sikh initiation ceremony to admit individuals into the faith. This was a new dispensation introduced by Guru Gobind Singh Ji. In this ceremony five people, known as the –Panch Pyaras -- 5 Beloved Ones and a Granthi –Scriptural reader , are instrumental in producing an elixir called Amrit. The devotees who want this ceremony wear a uniform consisting of 5 articles – Kanga, Keshki, Kara, Kirpan an Keshera. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 2 _ How Amrit is Prepared. _ Water is put in a steel utensil and whilst being stirred with a steel Khanda – a small size double edged sword. Five scriptural compositions are read in turn by the present – Five Beloved Ones and a handful of ‘Pattas’ – sugar pellets are also introduced into the liquid. Once prepared , after a prayer to the Lord God, 5 handfuls of this Elixir are placed onto the top of the head, 5 handfuls into the mouth and 5 handfuls are placed in both eyes. A mantara -- Nam is given to all devotees and the Rehat Maryada – the Code of Conduct is related to all to adhere to. All obligations are thoroughly made known to each and everyone. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 3 _ Charnamrit _ Amrit Sanchar’s predecessor was also an initiation ceremony ,to admit individuals into the faith and was known as ‘ Charnamrit ’ and was practiced by Guru Nanak Dev Ji and his successors. In this ceremony the feet of the Guru were washed with water and this water was then given to the devotees to drink and thereby admit them into the faith. The Mantara was also given as well as a good grounding in the core beliefs and practices as preached by the Gurus. This system was also known as Charnpaul and Pugpaul Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 4 _ Overview _ The two initiation ceremonies’ objectives were identical although the methods were different. The Guru Granth Sahib Ji was compiled by Guru Arjan Dev Ji, the 5th Guru , when the practice of Charnamrit was prevalent. The New Dispensation – Amrit Sanchar was introduced by Gobind Singh Ji, the 10th Guru. Although Guru Gobind Singh Ji rewrote the Guru Granth Sahib Ji and inserted into it his father Guru Teg Bahadur’s Bani, however, He did not include his own quite voluminous Bani into the Guru Granth Sahib Ji, and therefore there is no mention of his new Amrit Sanchar system in it. , howeve _ Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 5r He did not Overview - cont’d _ This Amrit Sanchar system is amply recorded in all accepted Panthic scriptures – Bhai Gurdas Ji, Bhai Nand Lal Ji, Rehat Namas, etc. The definition of Charnamrit is recorded in the Mahan Kosh – the Encyclopaedia of Sikh Literature – written by Bhai Kahan Singh Nabha. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 6 _ The Explanation _ To explain the question , Is it necessary for a Sikh to go through the Amrit Sanchar ceremony , because there is no mention of Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s New Dispensation in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji, it is necessary to look at the whole question of Man’s mission in this world : Gurbani tells us that the Soul is separated from his real Self– God. It is only through the course of the transmigration of the Soul system , that the Soul can obtain a human body – Man. ‘ Bhaee prapat manukh dhehuria. Gobind milan ki eh teru buria’ It is only through this life of Man that the Soul can reunite or merge with God because only Man has the capacity and the capability to achieve this. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 7 _ The Explanation --1 _ Once the Soul becomes embodied in Man then his mission begins. Without true guidance he becomes deluded through ignorance and becomes attached to worldly possessions and hence suffers pain . ‘ Munhuth kinae na payo sub thuke karm kmai. Munhuth bhekh kur bharmte dukh paiah dujhai bhai ’. He needs someone to direct him or show him the way to go and this can only be the Guru – who is Guru dwara – the door to God , through which the direction or path will be obtained. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 8 _ The Explanation - 2 ‘ Gur bin ghore andhar, guru bin Samage na avay. Gur bin surat na sidh, guru bin mukt na pavai’ _ Without the Guru there is total darkness, without the Guru there is no understanding. Without the Guru there is no direction and no success. Without the Guru there is no Salvation. Without the Guru’s instruction life is wasted – -- ‘ Gur purai har nam dhiraean, bin navay jeevan birtha ’. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 9 _ The Explanation -- 3 _ What does the Guru offer to his Sikh / disciple : The Guru says that for salvation , Nam – the name of the Lord God is essential--- ‘ Kuljug mae Ram nam hai sar ’. Who so ever searches for it , will find it with the Guru--- ‘ Ram nam jun bhalae soae. Poorae Gur te prapat hoe ’. The Guru saya that Nam is a priceless jewel. It is with the Guru ---- ‘ Nam amolak ratan hai , poorae Satgur pas ’ Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 10 _ The Explanation -- 4 _ The guru says that this Nam is only given by the benevolent Guru – --- ‘ Har nam dia gur purupkari ’ The stipulates that without the Guru’s instruction how can knowledge be obtained – -- ‘ Bin gur dheekia kesae gyan ’ The Guru states that by remembering the Nam all hurdles and suffering are gone --- ‘ Bigan benasan sub dhukh nasan, Satgur Nam dhiraean ’ Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 11 _ The Explanation -- 5 _ The Guru says, let the world not be in any doubt. Without the Guru no one achieves Salvation – Mukti. --- ‘ Mat ko bharm bhoolae sansar. Gur koe na uthras par ’ The Guru says that God himself has informed that without the Guru there is no Salvation -- Mukti -- ‘ Kaho Nanak Prabh ehae janaee. Bin Gur mukt na paeeae bhai ’ Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 12 Conclusion _ _ The Guru teaches us that Man has been separated from God through his Karma. His mission in life is to merge with God – become One with God. ---kirt karm ke vicharde kur kirpa melo Ram ’ For this to happen Man has to obtain the Mantra - Name of God – a technique to remember God – this is the only way merger with God can happen , with God’s Grace. -- ‘ Mil mere Govind apna Nam deejae ’ Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 13 _ Conclusion Cont’d _ Only the Guru is able to give the Mantra –Nam --and the Code of Conduct necessary that goes with it . --- ‘Bhoolai ko Gur marg paeaa. Aver tiag Har bhagti laiaa ’ . The Sikh or disciple, to receive this Mantra has to go through an initiation ceremony known as Amrit Sanchar. The predecessor to this was Charnamrit. In this ceremony Nam – Mantra – is given as well as a Code of Conduct -the Rehat Maryada -- to which the Sikh / disciple must adhere to. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 14 _ Conclusion Cont’d _ The reason for the Amrit Sanchar not being mentioned in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji, is because the Guru Granth Sahib Ji was initially compiled by Guru 4Arjan Dev Ji, the 5th Guru. The Amrit Sanchar , the new dispensation , was introduced by Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the 10th Guru, who did not add any of his own bani, including the Amrit Sanchar, into the Guru Granth Sahib Ji. Whether Amrit Sanchar is mentioned or not in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji, becomes irrelevant when the evidence is found in abundance in other Gurmat approved, authentic scriptures and literature such as Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s bani, Bhai Gurdas Ji’s Vara, Bhai Nand Lal Ji’s writings, Rehat Namas, etc. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 15 _ Conclusion Cont’d _ The primary and the most important factor is that in order to achieve salvation – Mukti --the Guru is needed : --‘ Guru bina gut nahi ’ -- ‘ Ram Ram sub ko kahe, Ram kahe na hoe ’ The Guru is the inter-face between Man and God. The initial and the most essential requirement is that a Sikh or disciple participates in the initiation ceremony, which is now the Amrit Sanchar and whose predecceor was Charnamrit, and receives the Nam and Guru’s guidance to achieve salvation-- Mukti, by the Grace of God. There is no way to bypass this process in Gurmat. Amrit Sanchar is absolute. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 16 _ Conclusion --Extra _ In the above attempts has been made to show that Amrit Sanchar is essential for a Sikh to progress on the path to Salvation – Mukti. Supporting evidence is available in plenty from other acceptable authoritative sources such as : Bhai Gurdas Ji – --- ‘charn dhoe rehras kur charnamrit Sikha peelaheha ’ Following the tradition, the feet are washed ( of the Guru ) and the water is then given to the Sikhs’ to drink. Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 17 _ Conclusion --Extra _ Bhai Gurdas 2 – -- ‘ Peevo poul khande dhar, hoeh janm sohela ’ Drink of the Elixir prepared with the Khanda, Salvation – Mukti will be assured . Rehat Namas – Bhai Desa Singh Ji – --- ‘ Pratham rehat yeh jan, khande ki poul shake ’ Knowing this tradition to be the foremost, drink of this Elixir of the Khanda Amrit Sanchar – cont’d 18 _ Conclusion --Extra _ Rehat Namas – Bhai Desa Singh Ji – --- ‘ Panch Singh Amrit jo deve, tahn ko sir dhur shak puun leve. Puun mil pancho rehat jo bhakhe, tahn ko mun meh dridh kur rakhe ’ The Elixir that is given by the Five, accept it respectfully and drink it. Also the Code of Conduct that the Five state to you, remember in your heart and adhere to it.