October 22, 2021 | By Pro. Puran Singh
RAMDAS AND BABA SRI CHAND – Baba Sri Chand, the eldest son of Nanak I, was the leader of a religious sect of his own. He roamed over the country as a mystic of great repute. During his travels Baba Sri Chand came to Amritsar to meet Ramdas. Seeing Ramdas’s long flowing beard, Baba Sri Chand asked him jocularly why he grew it. “To wipe the dust from thy holy feet,” replied Ramdas. “It is this magic that had made thee so great and me so small,” said Baba Sri Chand.
RAMDAS AND AMRITSAR – Ramdas had selected a solitary place shaded by Acacia trees, part of the gift of land made by the Emperor Akbar, and at the bidding of Amardas, had laid there the foundation of a new colony of disciples. He left Goindwal for this place, and began digging a huge tank in which he proposed to erect a central temple for the Sikhs. It is the site where now stands the city of Amritsar.
The work begun by him was completed by Guru Arjan Dev. It is written that here was discovered a water that healed many diseases. Following the Guru, many wandering Sikhs settled here. To this day, all the inhabitants of Amritsar approach Ramdas in prayer in all their difficulties and distress. So wen chosen is the place and so greatly blessed by the residence of the Holy Ones that Amritsar is not only the place of pilgrimage for the disciples, but an evergrowing centre for the trade and industry of the whole province. Its soil and climate are so different from the surronding country that it can grow pears of Kashmir and peaches of . Quetta along with the spices that grow in sub-montane regions. The whole city is surrounded by gardens of oranges and plantains, worked for profit; indeed today Amritsar is sending its fruits to distant marts like Calcutta.
A fruit-growing, a flower-breeding city of his Temple of Song: Amrita Sar, The Lake of Immortality !
RAMDAS AND ARJUN – Ramdas had felt his Beloved in his youngest son Arjun, and such was the prophecy of Amardas also. When. Arjun as a baby, would crawl up to the plate from which Guru Amardas took his meals, the Guru would say, “Why so impatient, a little one? Thou, too, shalt eat, from this plate.”
Ramdas asked Arjun to go and live at Lahore till he should call him thence. This was a great spiritual pain form Arjun; but he was the soul of obedience, and prepared to go to Lahore. At his departure, his mother Bhani blessed the child; giving him her message of motherly love, which was put to music later, and which we Sikhs, treasure as the tenderest message ever delivered by a Sikh mother to her son:
“My son, let this be the blessing of thy mother; Forget not Him Whose Song renews our soul, and makes it clean of all dust; Whose love is our salvation.
Let this be the blessing of thy mother:
May the Master be merciful to thee, and, by His mercy, mayest thou always feel the Divine filling thy heart !
May His Grace be thy raiment and His Name thy food !
And honour come to thee direct from Him, and bliss without end flow from Him in thy soul;
Mayest thou drink nectar from the cup that is in His Hands, and may the cup be for ever thine.
Let this be the blessing of thy mother: May no anxieties prey upon thy mind, and may His peace abide with thee !
And mayest thou like a bee abide in the flower of His feet!
My son, let this be the blessing of thy mother:
Mayest thou everyday be closer bound to thy Beloved !
May thy devotion prosper and thy soul shine in its own glory !”
THE DISCIPLE’S TIME OF EXILE – Arjun’s exile was like to the exile of Angad from Kartarpur, of Amardas from Khadur and of Ramdas from Goindwal. From Lahore he wrote his famous epistles to his Master, which were intercepted by his elder brother and thus withheld from the Guru. An epistle marked “3” reached the Master safely, and Arjun was recalled from exile. On his return, his father asked why he put the figure “3” on his very first letter. The truth came to light; and Pirthi Chand, his elder brother, was forced to produce the other letters, which contained songs of supreme value. These were set to music, and great was the rejoicing at Arjun’s home coming.
SONGS OF ARJUN –
One moment, if I see Thee not, is like a dark age to me. When shall I see Thee again, after so many days?
Poignant is my sorrow as that of the Chatrik that cries for the rain-cloud !
Always thirsty and restless am I, 0 Beloved Saint, for the sight of Thee !
Fair God, how beautiful is Thy face, and how deep and sweet the melody of Thy voice!
Ages, not days, have gone by, and the Chatrik has had no drop of nectar.
Blessed is the land where Thou dwellest!
I pant for Thee, 0 ·divine Friend!
Passes not my night, my eyes know no sleep!
When shall I see Thee, 0 Lord ?
(On meeting the Master)
Today breaks the mom of fortune for me;
I find today my Master, my Saint!
All-bliss is life; I have found my Beloved with myself !
No separation now, no pining, I am now for ever at His feet!
I am now for ever in His service !
THE SON CROWNED – It was on his home-coming from Lahore that Ramdas embraced Arjun, and gave him the throne of Guru Nanak. Ramdas placed the usual offerings before Arjun, and Bhai Budha gave the Tilak of spiritual kingship. Ramdas said, “Arjun has today become the Master of the whole earth; the light proceeds from his throne and lights the worlds.”
THE POETRY OF RAMDAS – The poetry of Ramdas flows like a stream of love whose cooling melody yearns for the Beloved, and sings of the magic spell of His glance. It is put in the mouth Of the Bride of God, who pines in her longing for one more glimpse of Him, and still one more! The Master’s divine music thrills the soul of a whole people, and his song makes everyone pure.
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