Guru Nanak Jayanti
Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of the Sikh faith was born in 1469 A.D. in the village of Talwandi in Lahore, Pakistan. Guru Nank or Gurpurab marks the birth anniversary of the founder of the Sikh religion. Sikhs do not worship idols and believe that God is formless. They celebrate the birth anniversaries of 10 Sikh gurus as Gurpurabs with devotion and dedication.
sonepur.jpgGuru Nank Jayanti is marked by prabhat pheris or early morning processions that begins from the Gurdwaras and then moves to different localities singing hymns or shabads. The celebration lasts for three days.
Usually two days before the birthday of Guru Nanak, ‘Akhand Path’ or forty-eight hour non-stop reading of the holy book of the Sikhs, Guru Granth Sahib is carried on at the Gurdwaras.
In 2012, Guru Nanak Jayanti will be celebrated on November 28th
A procession is carried out on the day before his birthday which is led by the Panj Pyaras (Five Beloved Ones).Sikh flag, or the Nishan Sahib and the palki or the palanquin of Sri Guru Granth Sahib is taken out in the procession. The procession also includes a group of singers singing hymns in praise of Guru Nanak and Gatka teams displaying their showmanship through martial arts. The leaders of the procession also spread the message of Guru Nanak.
Gurpurab day begins early with the singing of the Asa-di-Var (morning hymns) and hymns from the Sikh scriptures. It is followd with Katha or the exposition of the scriptures along with poems and lectures in praise of Guru Nanak. Langar or special community lunch is prepared at the Gurdwaras.The langar along with ‘Karah Prasad’ is offered to men and women of all communities.
In evening, the Gurdwaras are illuminated and people visit them in large numbers. People also illuminate their homes with candles and earthen lamps