Guru Nanak Jayanti, ‘Guru Nanak’s Prakash Utsav’ or ‘Guru Nanak Gurpurab’, marks the significance of the birth of the first Sikh Guru, Guru Nanak Dev.
Guru Nanak Jayanti, also known as Guru Nanak’s Prakash Utsav and Gurpurab, is celebrated in the month of Kartik (November), according to the Hindu calendar. The day marks the birth of the first Sikh Guru, Guru Nanak and this year, Guru Nanak Jayanti will be celebrated on November 8.
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History of Guru Nanak Jayanti
Guru Nanak Dev ji was born on April 15, 1469, at Rai Bhoi di Talwandi (now Nankana Sahib, Pakistan). He was the founder of Sikhism and the first of the 10 Sikh gurus. According to the Bikrami calendar, he was born on Puranmashi of Kattak (Kartik) in 1469. Thus, Guru Nanak Jayanti is celebrated on this day which falls around October or November every year.
Guru Nanak is regarded as a spiritual teacher who founded Sikhism in the 15th Century. He wrote the Guru Granth Sahib.
The main verses from the Guru Granth Sahib elaborate that the creator of the universe was one and his verses preach selfless service to humanity, prosperity and social justice for all.
Sikhs across the world celebrate the birthdays of all 10 gurus.
Celebrations start in gurudwaras two days prior to Guru Nanak Jayanti and a 48-hour non-stop recitation of the Guru Granth Sahib, called Akhand Path, is held.
A day before Guru Nanak Jayanti, a procession called Nagarkirtan is organised which is led by five men, referred to as the Panj Pyare, holding the Sikh triangular flag, Nishan Sahib.
The holy Guru Granth Sahib is placed in a palanquin during the procession and people sing hymns in groups, play traditional musical instruments, and display their martial art skills. The joyful procession passes through streets which are decorated with flowers.
On the celebration day, people visit gurudwaras, offer prayers and read 'paath' from Guru Granth Sahib early in the morning and organise many other events.
(Edited by : Sudarsanan Mani)