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Guru Nanak At Ujjain (3 of 4)

Guru Nanak clears the confusion of the Pundit about nature and attributes of God through His Bani, Dakhni Onkar.

Guru Nanak at Omkareshwar

Read Part I here
Read Part II here

Map-Omkaraeshwar (509K)

Omkareshwar is one of the most sacred towns situated in Madhya Pradesh on Indore-Khandwa Highway. The holy town is situated on the meeting point of two rivers- Narmada and Kaveri. Meeting between two of these most prominent rivers of India leaves the island in the shape of Hindu symbol Om hence named as such. The town consists of two ancient shrines- one is Omkareshwar (whose name means "Lord of Omkaara or the Lord of the Om Sound") located in the island and Amareshwar (whose name means "Immortal lord" or "lord of the Immortals or Devas") located on the south bank of Narmada River on the mainland. Omkareshwar temple situated on Mandhata island in river Narmada houses one of the 12 Jyotirlingas.

Jyotir1 (199K)

The dam on Narmada has increased the importance of the place and also visitor attraction. Water from this dam is diverted to Shipra River for Ujjain Mahakumbh and to feed Indore.

TheDam (127K)

Every Monday the golden idol of Lord Omkar is shown to the pilgrims and visitors with bands, drums, and priests gathering in procession, after which they go to the river to finish their worship. Temple permits are required for photography. The entire area is bounded by mountains presenting a very beautiful view. The view around the island is also serene and relaxing.

In 10th century AD Parmar King Udayaditya installed 4 stone inscriptions here with some holy couplets of Shiv Mahima inscribed on these. The temple then came to be known as Amareshwar Temple. Thousands of visitors around the globe come here on Mahashivaratri to celebrate union with God.

It was ruled by Parmars followed by Bhils and Rajputs in 12th and 13th century; during the period the temple areas flourished. In 14th Century however, after Ghauri's (Ghori) invasions, rule passed on to Sultans. During their period ancient temples and idols were destroyed. Mughals especially Aurangzeb caused further devastation. The remains of ancient temples and structures around Mandhata are spread around on the adjoining hill feature. The new construction of temples came up close to Narmada.

The airports closest to Omkareshwar are Indore (77km) and Ujjain (133km). The nearest railway station is 12 kms away, but it is not on the mainline and is not connected to the major cities. The nearest major railway station is Indore (77 km). You can also board a bus from Ujjain, Indore or Khandwa. Distance of Omkareshwar from Indore and Maheshwar is 80 kms, Mandu and Ujjain is 145 kms, Burhanpir 125 Kms , Khandwa 51 kms and Bhopal 280 kms. It is about 12 miles (20 km) from Mortakka in Madhya Pradesh.

During fairs and festivals like Maha-Shivratri, Diwali, Dussehra, Navratra and Vasant Panchami local people gather in large numbers here to celebrate. Most of the visitors are from nearby townships and cities like Indore, Khandwa, Ujjain, Dhar etc. During one such fair Guru Nanak visited this area in 1511 AD during his itinerary (Udasi) to south and reached here after visiting Ujjain, Dharanagari (Dhar), Betma and Indore. During his visit Guru Nanak went to Omkareshwar and Amreshwar temples and held discussions with the pundits. He did not agree with them that the God as OM created the earth at this location. He explained them the actual meaning of Omkar as against the one depicted by them. His description is called Bani Dhakhni Ongkar and is found recorded in Shri Guru Granth Sahib Angs 929 to 938.

ਰਾਮਕਲੀ ਮਹਲਾ ੧ ਦਖਣੀ ਓਅੰਕਾਰੁ ੴ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ॥ਓਅੰਕਾਰਿ ਬ੍ਰਹਮਾ ਉਤਪਤਿ ॥ ਓਅੰਕਾਰੁ ਕੀਆ ਜਿਨਿ ਚਿਤਿ ॥ ਓਅੰਕਾਰਿ ਸੈਲ ਜੁਗ ਭਏ ॥ ਓਅੰਕਾਰਿ ਬੇਦ ਨਿਰਮਏ ॥ ਓਅੰਕਾਰਿ ਸਬਦਿ ਉਧਰੇ ॥ ਓਅੰਕਾਰਿ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਤਰੇ ॥ ਓਨਮ ਅਖਰ ਸੁਣਹੁ ਬੀਚਾਰੁ ॥ ਓਨਮ ਅਖਰੁ ਤ੍ਰਿਭਵਣ ਸਾਰੁ ॥ ੧ ॥ ਸੁਣਿ ਪਾਡੇ ਕਿਆ ਲਿਖਹੁ ਜੰਜਾਲਾ ॥ ਲਿਖੁ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਗੋਪਾਲਾ ॥ ੧ ॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ ਸਸੈ ਸਭੁ ਜਗੁ ਸਹਜਿ ਉਪਾਇਆ ਤੀਨਿ ਭਵਨ ਇਕ ਜੋਤੀ ॥ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਵਸਤੁ ਪਰਾਪਤਿ ਹੋਵੈ ਚੁਣਿ ਲੈ ਮਾਣਕ ਮੋਤੀ ॥ ਸਮਝੈ ਸੂਝੈ ਪੜਿ ਪੜਿ ਬੂਝੈ ਅੰਤਿ ਨਿਰੰਤਰਿ ਸਾਚਾ ॥ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਦੇਖੈ ਸਾਚੁ ਸਮਾਲੇ ਬਿਨੁ ਸਾਚੇ ਜਗੁ ਕਾਚਾ ॥ ੨ ॥ ਧਧੈ ਧਰਮੁ ਧਰੇ ਧਰਮਾ ਪੁਰਿ ਗੁਣਕਾਰੀ ਮਨੁ ਧੀਰਾ ॥ ਧਧੈ ਧੂਲਿ ਪੜੈ ਮੁਖਿ ਮਸਤਕਿ ਕੰਚਨ ਭਏ ਮਨੂਰਾ ॥ ਧਨੁ ਧਰਣੀਧਰੁ ਆਪਿ ਅਜੋਨੀ ਤੋਲਿ ਬੋਲਿ ਸਚੁ ਪੂਰਾ ॥ ਕਰਤੇ ਕੀ ਮਿਤਿ ਕਰਤਾ ਜਾਣੈ ਕੈ ਜਾਣੈ ਗੁਰੁ ਸੂਰਾ ॥੩॥੫੪॥

Ramkali, First Mehl, Dakhani, Ongkaar: One Universal Creator God. By The Grace Of The True Guru: From Ongkaar, the One Universal Creator God, Brahma was created. He kept Ongkaar in his consciousness. From Ongkaar, the mountains and the ages were created. Ongkaar created the Vedas. Ongkaar saves the world through the Shabad. Ongkaar saves the Gurmukhs. Listen to the Message of the Universal, Imperishable Creator Lord. The Universal, Imperishable Creator Lord is the essence of the three worlds. || 1 || Listen, O Pandit, O religious scholar, why are you writing about worldly debates? As Gurmukh, write only the Name of the Lord, the Lord of the World. || 1 || Pause || Sassa: He created the entire universe with ease; His One Light pervades the three worlds. Become Gurmukh, and obtain the real thing; gather the gems and pearls. If one understands, realizes and comprehends what he reads and studies, in the end he shall realize that the True Lord dwells deep within his nucleus. The Gurmukh sees and contemplates the True Lord; without the True Lord, the world is false. || 2 || Dhadha: Those who enshrine Dharmic faith and dwell in the City of Dharma are worthy; their minds are steadfast and stable. Dhadha: If the dust of their feet touches one's face and forehead, he is transformed from iron into gold. Blessed is the Support of the Earth; He Himself is not born; His measure and speech are perfect and True. Only the Creator Himself knows His own extent; He alone knows the Brave Guru. || 3 ||

The study of the first stanza of Bani clearly indicates that Guru Nanak is discussing the philosophy of the Pundits of Omkar Temple. In rest of the Bani (from stanza 2 to 54 including Rahao (Pause)) Guru Nanak is clearing the confusion of the Pundit about nature and attributes of God.

Guru Nanak explained to the Pundit that there is no Trinity (Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva) of God to which the word, 'Oankar' or 'Omkar', is implied. Guru Nanak further explains to the Pundit that God is 'One and the Only One Only'. He does not come into anthropomorphic form (Ajuni); and no specific/descriptive (ikrqm) name can be coined for God since God is an 'Eternal Entity' and ineffable.

Guru Nanak is talking about the ancient concept being taught by the Pundit: The Idol of Shiva or Linga of Shiva is considered as 'EAMkwir' (Omkar) by the Pundit of Omkar Temple. And the Pundit also equates 'Omkar' to OM, which represents Trinity of God. Therefore, it is not the philosophy of Guru Nanak. So Omkar Bani was composed by Guru Nanak to explain to the Pundit of Omkar Temple that God cannot be represented as Omkar since it originated from OM - The Trinity: Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva.

A Gurdwara was constructed to commemorate Guru Nanak's visit just opposite the Omkareshwar temple on Narmada Ghat itself. A new bridge connecting the southern other bank of the river has been constructed. There is only one permanent resident Iqbal Singh Khera having a grocery shop in Omkareshwar. The Granthi and sewadar are from local Sikh community of Wanjaras who have large population in this area and occasionally visit the Gurdwara. On main functions (especially from 1-3 April) the sangat of Indore, Ujjain, Betma and Mhow comes in large number under Sukhmani Sahib Sewa Society and does the recitation of Gurbani and stay for two nights till the function is complete. To meet the requirement of accommodating large numbers Giani Sant Singh Maskeen, who had been regularly coming to these occasions, was the key in getting the new building constructed. Now S. Ranjit Singh Gauhar regularly performs these functions. To accommodate the sangat, a 16 room residential complex (sarai) has been constructed in the city.

GurdwaraOnNarmada (185K)
DrGrewal (135K)

The Gurdwara is situated on the bank of the river Narmada. Mortakka, Omkareshwar, 15 Km ahead Barwaha. Madhya Pardesh (India), Phone: 07280271330, Mobile : 9827714749

Gurdwara (169K)


Gurdwara Gwarigat Sahib (36K)

Myself and my wife visited the Gurdwara on 8 October 2017 in a hired cab from Indore. It took us two hours on road Indore- Khandwa, which is an alternative route for the truckers and had lot of traffic. Travelling through greenery rich hilly terrain itself is a matter of great pleasure. We find another Gurdwara halfway which was constructed by some babas. We saw quite a number of advertising boards where a local Wanjara Sikh Youth was shown being honoured by the local community for having elected as key executive in a political party. Presence of Sikhs in the villages and towns en-route in such a remote area meeting them and exchanging our good wishes was quite encouraging.

I wonder as to how Guru Nanak travelled to such remote difficult unknown locations on foot travelling miles together without having any resources! Location like Omkareshwar can be called as God's wonder on earth. On the bank of river he meditated and also guided the people to true meditation and the true meanings of OM is really a feat which appears impossible. I bowed my head to the Great Guru for all he did for saving the humanity and giving the lesson of Truth all around the world!

Gurdwara building was visible from southern bank wherefrom we crossed on to the Northern bank where the Gurdwara was. Since the Omkareshwar temple was closing, a pandit who has been hogging and nagging throughout our crossing the bridge, insisted that we must first visit the temple. We went to the Omkareshwar temple and had the Darshan of Jyotrling. Gurdwara was close by. We reached a large mansion in which Sri Guru Granth Sahib commemorated Guru Nanak's visit. After paying our obeisance and 'Order of the Day' from Sri Guru Granth Sahib we held discussions with the Granthi Manjit Singh (9926702393) and the Sewadar Santokh Singh a Wanjara Sikh (7049303404) the only two Sikhs who remain present in Gurdwara for most of the year. Other important numbers are of S. Ajit Singh (9229874076), Ravinder Singh Raj (8717985016). Manjit Singh ( 9425077777, 9826076000) President Gurdwara Indore is also the President of this Gurdwara since this Gurdwara is being looked after by Indore sangat. S Manjit Singh Rana is the preacher (07312343502).

Since it was getting dark and it was not safe to travel through deep jungle on late nights we had to perforce leave for Mhow to travel another 2 hours in the night. However, the grat experience we had cannot be described appropriately through words; it must be enjoyed through personal experience only.

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