Bir Ras Darbar and Rehansbhai Kirtan

Gurudwara Baba Sang, Smethwick, Birmingham, UK.

Gurudwara Baba Sang, Birmingham UK: The Bir Ras Durbar was created to celebrate the Khalsa festival of Holla Mohalla and Barsi of Sant Baba Harbans Singh Ji Dameliwale.  The recitations and Sehaj Path of both the Sri Guru Granth Sahib and the Sri Dasam Granth ji created the atmosphere of the true Khalsa Warrior or Sant Siphai.

As per Puratan Khalsa traditions the Narial (coconut) was Chatka’d at the end of the compositions of the Sri Dasam Granth recitals. This is a practice that has been lost by many and is something many are fearful of as it is age old custom which they don’t understand.  

The concept and importance of the Narial has been embedded in Sikh tradition since the time Gur-gaddi ceremony/initiation took place. When Guruship was passed on the placing of 5 paisa the offering of Narial was seen.

When Sri Dasam Granth Bani is read and the Narial is broken it symbolizes the destruction of a dusht (demon) and the breaking of the ego. The juice within (representing the inner tendencies) and the white kernel (representing the mind) is offered to the timeless Akal Purakh. Thus, purified by the touch of the lord the coconut is used as Parsaad. In the same way Karah Parsaad which is made daily and again blessed by the Kirpan and Bani recitation. Hence, we should seek to maintain the puratan Saint and Warrior traditions of the Khalsa.

Kirtan and katha was undertaken by Ranjit Singh Rana (Editor of Sahib Magazine), Birmingham, UK. In between the Kirtan he made several pronouncements enforcing the true virtues of Sikhism from Guru Nanak to Guru Gobind Singh ji.

Ranjit Singh Rana took exception to the recent work by Dr Dilgeer Singh who has been promoting the wrong perception of the ten Gurus. Stating that the writer had deliberately distorted Sikh History with his take on the lives of the Gurus and his distaste of the war bani of the Tenth Guru, the Sri Dasam Granth.

He stated that all mahapurkhs (Inc Sant Jarnail Singh Bhinderwale) from the days of old had always held Sri Guru Granth Sahib and the Sri Dasam Granth in duality and in great esteem. He also referenced the martyrdom of the Guru Tegh Bahadur and just as there was a need for the Khalsa there was a need for the Sri Dasam Granth as well.

The Sikh National Anthem of Dev Shiva Bar Mohe (Chandi Charitra) was alluded to and the importance that it plays in the Sikh psyche. The concept of Shiv was explained and it’s significance and appearance in the Guru Granth Sahib.

Giani Anoop Singh stated that the Dasam Granth tells us to stay away from the mud. The Dasam Granth should be read so that modern day problems like Aids can be avoided. He provided his own unique take on the current situation with comical anecdotes to drive home his points.

Bhai Mohan Singh (Sikh Awareness Society) stated the Sikh world faced a major problem related to conversion of Sikhs to other faiths. He stated that this was related to the growth of the Dera movement and fake babas. He looked at tactics used to convert people by fake gurus and babas such as Piara Bhaniarewala and Gurmeet Ram Raheem amongst others. Bhai Sahib looked at the psychology of how these baba take advantage of people and the initiatives we should employ to counteract the attacks on Sikhi. Giani ji also stated that in the last census on the Sikhs it showed that the Sikhs were a decreasing population in Punjab whereas other faiths had all increased.

The growth in fake groups setting themselves up as Gurus was not a modern phenomenon as Bhai Mohan Singh referred to a Hukumnama of Mata Sundri which states that Sikhs should not see any others as a Guru. This was at the time of competing Gurus, the advancement of Banda Bahadur and the adopted son of Mata Sundri, Ajit Singh. According to a report in Chandigarh there was 9000 Deras and only 12, 000 village areas in the Punjab, hence, the Deras were mushrooming at an alarming rate.

The Durbar was well attended by many Sampradaya including the Damdami Taksal, Nihangs and others as well. Hence, all in all the sangat showed their love and support for the Sant-Sipahi / Warrior Saint concepts that are integrally interwoven into the fabric of Sikhi by supporting the Bir Ras Durbar and the following Rehansbhai Kirtan which was well attended through the early hours and the Asa di Vaar Kirtan at 6.30 am.  

Kirtani, naujawan paathi and Kathakaar who performed in support of the program included Ragi Bhai Balwant Singh Josh, Bhai Mohan Singh (Sikh Awareness Society), Bhai Ranjeet Singh Rana, Bhai Maan Singh, Naujawan Inderjit Singh, Bhai Satpal Singh and Jaspal Singh, Giani Sukdev Singh (Malaysia), Bhai Vikram Singh Nihang, the daughters of Bhai Amrik Singh (Damdami Taksal), Bibi Sukhjinder Kaur, Bhai Aman Singh, Hardeep Singh, Rajan Singh and Professor Amar Singh.

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