Gurpurab celebrates the birthday of the founder of Sikhism and the first Sikh Guru, Guru Nanak. This year Guru Nanak Jayanti will be celebrated on 19th November 2021. Read to know all about the occasion!
One of the most significant, widely celebrated, and loved festivals in the Sikh community is the Gurpurab. The birth anniversary of all the Gurus is celebrated by the Sikh community and is called 'Gurpurab'; hence, Guru Nanak Jayanti is called Guru Nanak Gurpurab. Also known as Guru Nanak Prakash Utsav, Guru Parv, and Prakash Parv, this occasion is celebrated every year with complete devotion to commemorate the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism. It is considered the most important and revered day in the Sikh community; therefore, it is celebrated zealously. Let’s get to know more about this occasion.
According to the Hindu Lunar calendar, Guru Nanak Jayanti or Guru Parv is celebrated on a full moon day in the Kartik month. The day of the festival is dependent on the Hindu Lunar calendar, and thus, may change every year. As per the Gregorian calendar, this occasion falls in October or November.
Given below are the dates for Gurpurab 2021 for Guru Nanak’s birthday.
As mentioned above, Guru Nanak Jayanti is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of the first Sikh Guru of the ten Sikh Gurus, Guru Nanak. His birthday is honored and celebrated worldwide on Kartik Purnima according to the Hindu Lunar Calendar. Even though Guru Nanak was born on 15th April 1469 in Talwandi village in Punjab in the Lahore province (present-day Pakistan), his birth anniversary is celebrated according to the Full Moon Day in the Kartik month.
Guru Nanak is a saint, mystic, philosopher, religious reformer, social reformer, and overall, an illuminated soul. Guru Nanak is known to have taught people about the message of 'Ik Onkar' or 'one God', who is believed to be the eternal truth and dwells in every creation. He set up a unique spiritual and social platform based on fraternal love, quality, and goodness. He has been credited for enlightening people with the profound knowledge of spirituality, humanity, morality, and eternal truth.
Guru Nanak Jayanti is an occasion for celebration and prayer among the Sikhs. The festival reminds all the devotees that they should remember the teachings that Guru Nanak emphasized, and the devotees should focus on living an ethical life. On this occasion, the Guru Granth Sahib- the book of the Sikhs is read. According to this tradition, it is a non-stop ritual wherein the book is read for about forty-eight hours before the festival commences.
Also read: ➭ Kartik Purnima
The celebrations are carried out for three consecutive days. Let's find out what all traditions and rituals are associated with this important day.
Two days prior to Guru Nanak’s birth anniversary, the celebrations begin with ‘Akhand Path’. ‘Akhand Path’ is held in all Gurdwaras. In this customary ritual, the Gurdwaras are decorated with flowers and lights. A continuous 48-hour long uninterrupted reading of the verses of the holy Guru Granth Sahib is done on this day. The ritual of reading is done in the Gurdwaras in front of the devotees.
On the day before the Guru Parv, i.e., the second day, 'Nagar Kirtan' is organized. 'Nagar Kirtan' is a huge religious procession taken out on the roads decorated with colorful banners. In this holy procession, the followers of the faith sing and dance to spread the Guru's message. The followers and devotees carry the Sikh flag, called the 'Nishan Sahib,' and walk along with a decorated palanquin that carries the holy Guru Granth Sahib. The devotees follow the palanquin while reciting religious hymns and prayers. This procession is led by the 'Panj Pyare' (Five Beloved Ones). The religious procession also includes people singing praises of the Guru and 'Shabads'.
The procession also includes ‘Gatka’, which is a martial art form associated with the Sikhs. It highlights the valor, bravery, and skills of the Sikh community. The ‘Gatka’ includes a display of mock battles using traditional Sikh weapons.
Furthermore, the celebrations begin as early as 3:00 AM during ‘Amrit Vela’ and end about 6:00 AM. The ‘Amrit Vela’ is the auspicious period between 3:00 AM to 6:00 AM. The early morning time is considered the most pious time for praying, which is why Guru Nanak instructed everyone to pray at the early hours of the day. Apart from the morning prayers, the devotees spend the rest of the day involved in ‘Katha’ and ‘Kirtan’ rituals which involve reading hymns and scriptures in praise of Guru Nanak.
On the actual occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti, the day starts at the crack of dawn with the recital of devotional hymns (Asa-di-Var). The 'Prabhat Pheri' tradition is observed during the early morning at dawn. On this occasion, a 'Katha' session is also organized where teachings of Guru Nanak from the holy Guru Granth Sahib are read to the followers. The rituals end with 'Kirtans' that involve singing songs in praise of Guru Nanak. Cooking the delicious 'Kadha Prasad' and then distributing it to all holds utmost importance on this day.
The 'Langar' is also a significant part of this festival. Devotees prepare large community lunches known as 'Langar'. It's a vegetarian meal that is nourishing and tasty. All the meal preparations are done under hygienic conditions by the people of the community. Devotees participate in it to serve selflessly and take up different chores from cooking food to cleaning as it is commonly believed that this is the best way to seek Guru's blessings. This is called 'Kar Seva'. 'Langar' is open for all, and people who attend the 'Langar' eat a simple and nutritious meal with everyone irrespective of caste, class, gender, creed, or religion.
Known as one of the biggest and most renowned festivals of the Sikhs, Guru Nanak Jayanti or Gurpurab is celebrated with great pomp and immense reverence. Even though the festival of Guru Nanak Jayanti is celebrated all across India with immense fervor and devotion, the grandeur and reverence with which it is celebrated in the states of Punjab and Haryana cannot be matched. This festival is also celebrated with immense gusto and enthusiasm in many other countries like Canada, the USA, and the UK.
All across India and the world, the Sikh community celebrates this occasion by carrying out processions, reciting hymns, and doing 'Seva' with complete devotion. The Gurdwaras are decorated with beautiful flowers and dazzling lights. Special seating and food arrangements are made as throngs of devotees visit the Gurdwara on this occasion. To show devotion and reverence for Guru Nanak, many devotees, regardless of whether they belong to the Sikh community or not, visit the beautiful Golden Temple in Amritsar. The Golden Temple is exquisitely decorated and is a sight to behold on this occasion.
If you want to make the most of Guru Nanak Jayanti 2021, all you need to do is get in touch with our expert astrologers right away!
✍️ By- Team Astroyogi