Thursday, April 12, 2012

Baisakhi - Festival celebrated on 13th Arpil

Hey all my dear readers! How are you all doing? :D

Again! I was out any intellectual things to post on this Intellectual Thursday, so here I bring to you some other news. It's about Baisakhi, a festival celebrated in Northern India generally on 13th April, and occasionally on 14th April. Baisakhi is an ancient harvest festival celebrated across the northern Indian subcontinent, especially in the Punjab region by all Punjabis Sikhs.

Since agriculture is the backbone of the Indian sub-continent, it provides livelihood to majority of the people in the rural areas of the country, the festival of harvest are given special importance in the calendar of events. Vaisakhi/Baisakhi is one of the important festivals celebrated with fun and fervor by the people living in the northern parts of the country. Apart from being a harvest festival, it holds religious significance too.

For people of Punjab, especially the Sikhs, Visakhi is a mega event. It's a religious as well as harvest festival and New Year Day also. For the Sikh community, it has a very special meaning. Sikhs celebrate Visakhi as the day of the formation of the Khalsa (the pure one). On the day, in 1699, Guru Gobind Singh (the tenth Sikh Guru) established the Khalsa and eliminated the differences of high and low and established that all human beings are equal. Sikhism, in its present form, owes its existence to that Visakhi day. After the Visakhi day of 1699, the tradition of Gurus was put to an end by the Sikhs and later the Guru Granth Sahib was declared as their eternal guide and Holy Book by the tenth Guru.

The history tells another story that in 1567, Guru Ram Das committed Visakhi as one of the special days, when all the Sikhs would assemble to seek the blessings from Guru at Goindwal. Many Sikhs believe that on the day of Baisakhi, martyred by the barbaric acts of the Muslim rulers. According to the legend, he was dumped into boiling oil, by the Muslim rulers.

Story of Baisakhi

The story of Baisakhi Festival began with the martyrdom of Guru Teg Bahadur, the ninth Sikh Guru who was publicly beheaded by the Aurungzeb, the Mughal ruler. Aurungzeb wanted to spread Islam in India and Guru Tegh Bahadur stood up for the rights of Hindus and Sikhs and the Mughals therefore saw him as a threat.

After the death of Guru Teg Bahadur, his son, Guru Gobind Singh became the next Guru of the Sikhs. Guru Gobind Singh wished to instill courage and strength to sacrifice among his fellow men. To fulfil his dream, Guru Gobind Singh called on the historic Baisakhi Day congregation of Sikhs at Keshgarh Sahib near Anandpur on March 30, 1699.

When thousands of people assembled for Guru’s blessing, Guru Gobind Singh came out of the tent carrying an unsheathed sword. He gave a powerful speech to infuse courage amongst fellowmen. At the end of the speech he said that every great deed was preceded by equally great sacrifice and demanded that anyone prepared to give his life come forward. On the Guru’s third call, a young man offered himself. The Guru took the man inside a tent and reappeared alone with a bloodied sword. Guru Gobind Singh asked for another volunteer. This was repeated another four times until a total of five Sikhs had gone into the tent with the Guru. Everyone present was worried and though that Guru Gobind Singh has killed five Sikhs. At this point Guru presented all the five men before the people. Every one present was surprised to see all five men alive and wearing turbans and saffron-coloured garments.

These five men were called Panj Piara or 'Beloved Five' by the Guru. The Guru blessed them with a Pahul ceremony. In an iron vessel, the Guru stirred with a sword called Khanda Sahib, the batasha that his wife, Mata Sundari Ji had put into water. The congregation recited verses from scriptures as the Guru performed the sacred ceremony. The water was now considered the sacred nectar of immortality called amrit. It was first given to the five volunteers, then drunk by the guru and later distributed amongst the crowd. With this ceremony, all those present, irrespective of caste or creed, became members of the Khalsa Pantha (the Order of the Pure Ones).

The Guru regarded the Panch Piaras as the first members of the Khalsa and the embodiment of the Guru himself. With the constitution of the Panj Pyare the high and low castes were amalgamated into one as among the original Panj Pyare, there was one Khatri, shopkeeper; one Jat, farmer; one Chhimba, calico printer; one Ghumar, water-carrier; and one Nai, a barber. The Guru gave the surname of Singh (Lion) to every Sikh and also took the name for himself. From Guru Gobind Rai he became Guru Gobind Singh. This was seen as a great step in national integration because society at that time was divided on the basis of religion, caste and social status.

Guru Gobind Singh also bestowed on Khalsa, the unique Sikh identity. He directed Sikhs to wear five K's: Kesh or long hair, Kangha or comb, Kripan or dagger, Kachha or shorts and a Kara or bracelet. Guru Gobind Singh also discontinued the tradition of Gurus and asked all Sikhs to accept the Grantha Sahib as their eternal guide. He urged them to come to him with their hair and beard unshorn to get baptized by the sword.

I know I don't know much about this festival still I'm posting this. Why? Well first of all, I love to share information through my blog. Next, sharing such things makes me to know more too! :D So even if I have to copy info to post such things which I don't know, I don't think that's so big a problem! :P But hey! let me make it clear, tmore than 80% of the content on my blog is ORIGINAL! :D :P :P

For the Hindus, it is the start of the New Year, and is celebrated with requisite bathing, partying, and worshipping. It's believed that thousands of years ago, Goddess Ganga descended to earth and in her honor, many Hindus gather along the sacred Ganges River for ritual baths. The action is centered in the holy cities along the Ganges in north India, or in Srinagar's Mughal Gardens, Jammu's Nagbani Temple, or anywhere in Tamil Nadu. Hindus plant poles (wrapped in flags of god-embroidered silk) in front of their homes, and hang pots of brass, copper or silver on top.

In Kerala, the festival is called 'Vishu'. It includes fireworks, shopping for new clothes and interesting displays called 'Vishu Kani'. These are arrangements of flowers, grains, fruits, cloth, gold, and money are viewed early in the morning, to ensure a year of prosperity.
In Assam, the festival is called Bohag Bihu, and the community organizes massive feasts, music and dancing.

So tomorrow is Baisakhi, I hope all those who celebrate it have a superb day, and rest all too have a superb day! :)

For more info you may consult the website:


  1. Happy Baisakhi Day to all of you!!!
    Have a Superb day to everyone!

  2. hello Toxifier!

    thanks for your visit.
    Yes I'm be greatful if we can exchange link..Thank you in advance my new friend.

    1. Okay! I saw you got 4 blogs. With which you would like to exchange links? all 4? or some specific ones only?


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