Guru Nanak birthday is one of the most auspicious occasions among the Sikhs. Not just that it is an important celebration of the particular community, but today people from different other religions are also seen to observe this day with great pomp and show. Whatsoever, Guru Nanak Dev Ji Guruparab, which is commonly known as Prakash Utsav is one of the most popular Sikh gurus. He has been the founder of Sikhism and is thus, highly revered by the entire community. The first guru’s birth anniversary is celebrated worldwide. This day is commonly titled as the “Guru Nanak Jayanti.” Other names dedicated to the celebration include Gurupurab, or Guru Nanak Prakash Parv.
How is Guru Nanak birthday celebrated?
The celebrations on the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak usually begins with Prabhat Pheri wherein the devotees take out the procession early in the morning, while chanting the prayers and hymns that are subject to their religion. This year, on 30th of November 2020, it is the 551st birth anniversary of Guru Nanak is undoubtedly one of the most eagerly awaited ceremonies of the people in the community. According to the traditions, there is a 48 hours long reading of the Guru Granth Sahib on a continuous basis, as done in the Gurudwaras. This is known as Akand Path which begins two days before the day of the occasion.
Besides, there is a procession held on by the devotees during the early hours in the morning itself, which is commonly known as the Nagar Kirtan. The Guru Granth Sahib is decked up in a palanquin on this particular day and it is also led by five sentinels who are known as the ‘panj pyare.’ Indeed, this observation plays a vital role in the life of the people belonging to the community, and the whole day is celebrated with music and songs that are being sung in the praise of the Guru. A lot of people from various other communities are also seen to join this auspicious ceremony. Schools also observe this day and the students are found to be actively participating in the same.
History of Guru Nanak birthday and its significance
Guru Nanak Dev was born in the year 1469. He was born in Nankana Sahib. He is known as the founder of Sikhism. Therefore, his birthday is regarded as a miracle by the whole community. Also, it is important to note that his birth day coincides with the Kartik Purnima as per the Hindu calendar. It is the day when all the people of the community remind themselves of all the teachings that the Guru has preached. The primary principle of the Sikh people is to believe in just own god and thus, it is known as Ek Onkar. They also have faith on their submission on just one God and thus, they call it as the Waheguru. The details of all the teachings are present there in their holy book, the Guru Granth Sahib.
Guru Nanak birthday celebration
The Guru Nanak birthday is observed by Katha and Kirtan that are meant in the praise of the Guru. Also, it is followed by prayers and an offering, known as ‘langar.’ This festival is predominant in different states including that of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh. The Gurudwaras are decked up and decorated with lights and flowers. A lot of devotees offer prayers on this day, and the festive fervor is quite significant on this Eve. Due to the pandemic, things are a bit different this year. In the Sikh community, they pay a lot of respect and importance to the birthdays of the 10 gurus, whose teachings have helped them grow across the path of their lives.