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  1. For those who don't know, Matra Sahib is the scripture of the Udasi sect. They attribute it to Baba Shri Chand. They often do parkash of it, like we parkash Guru Granth Sahib. Most of their prayers, like their Aarti, come from this scripture. I am posting some shabads sung by Bhai Davinder Singh Nirman from this granth.
  2. Guru Nanak Dev Ji's visit to Mecca. Despite rejecting the prevalent sub-continental philosophies surrounding him, Guru Nanak Dev undertook extensive travels in visiting the sites of pilgrimage often associated with his neighboring traditions. He visited Rome to view and dissect the Christian faith, he visited many an eminent Hindu site to dispel prevalent superstitions accepted as spirituality whilst he visited Mecca to dispel the myth of a singular supreme faith. It is his visit to Mecca which has become a matter of extensive debate between Islamic and Sikh scholars. The queries raised by the critics are simple yet confounding to the layman. What truly occurred at Mecca. Did Guru Nanak Dev Ji actually visit the said location? Did he adhere to its tenets as prescribed by Islam? Did he conform his belief in the prophet and his revelation? Or is there a more divergent version to the event. One which narrates the truth in it's entirety and forgoes all notions of the Guru claiming Islam to be his faith? Let us see. The Guru always purported himself to be neutral and entirely indifferent to both the doctrines of Islam and Hinduism. He did not give credence to either of the said faiths being rational in their spiritual perspective and/or capable of liberating an adherent. Islamic scholars have often justified their fraudulent views, regarding the Guru's acceptance of Islam, by quoting several untraceable and more often then not extremely biased and heavily fraudulent sources devoid of any historical logic. These sources, and their so called rationality, are subsequently refuted by the Guru's own writings contained within the Sikh canon and events which transpired in his life. The arguments concerning the Guru's acceptance of Islam are laid as follows: 1.) The Guru paid obeisance to Allah at a mosque in his residential region. Despite such an event transpiring its logic, and course, has been heavily perverted by these pseudo-scholars. The Guru did indeed visit the mosque but for a more divergent reason than is claimed by our neo-scholars. His dictum that the existence of both Hindus and Muslims, as per their stratification, was meaningless in the eyes of the creator and as a result there truly was no distinctive entity defined as Hinduism or even Islam. If he truly had been a Muslim than such a statement would have been apostasy and he himself would have decried and eschewed any notion of citing it. When his ultimatum reached the ears of the regional Islamic authorities they immediately descended on him. In order to make him prove his claim, and potentially see and accept the supremacy of Islam, he was challenged to attend the ritualistic Islamic prayer at the local mosque if he truly abided by his own paragon. The Guru accepted this challenge and traversed to the said mosque. On entering and performing ablution he patiently stood still whilst the prayer was reiterated around him. After the conclusion the authorities approached him and chastised him for his conduct. Why did he not bow and kneel as they had done? They queried from him. The Guru answered with an extensive conundrum, citing the fact that no one truly had their heart in the prayer and as such he was confused as to what to do. Thus he decided to remain standing. When he was heavily criticized due to his blasphemy he provided an extensive insight into the minds of the authorities themselves. They had been concerned with the commercialization and upkeep of their respective horses he delved. This revelation finally exposed the hypocrisy of the ritualistic prayers and their performers. This very event proves the Guru's rejection of Islamic tenets. As per Islam only God (Allah) and his prophet, Muhammad, are allowed insight into the minds of men ('Al-Ghaib'). Thus the Guru's rejection, avoidance of performing a ritualistic prayer and divine insight proves him to be a non-muslim. 2.) The Guru included the Bani of several eminent Islamic saints on his canon. As per history the Guru included the Bani of four "muslim" saints in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji. Despite the label of "muslim" these individuals did not adhere to fundamental Islamic notions (parallel to the Guru and his subsequent successors). Despite using Arabian terminology Sheik Farid gave great credence to the dictums of re-incarnation, a recognition of humanity and the recognition of the metaphysical concept of avatar-hood. Bhagat Sadhna preached the notion of universality and belief in a God who was above any Abrahamic or Hinduistic constraints. Bhagat Bikhan as a sufi purported the concept of a creator beyond any responsibility and one who was not bound via fundamental constraints. Bhai Mardanna, the Guru's perpetual companion and for the sake of a debate referred to as a saint, himself accepted Guru Nanak's rejection of Islamic doctrines and believed in the Guru's contrary-to-Islam doctrine. Thus these individuals cannot be truly considered as muslims as they discarded all notions of ethnic, national and religious labels. 3.) The Guru visited Mecca. This is the crucial crux of the matter at hand and as such will be here forth dissected. Mecca despite being an autonomous nerve-center of Islam has remained a matter of controversy since it's inception as a pillar of Islamic centrality. Its indigenous occupants, as per neutral sources, were forced to conform to Islamic ideals, accepted the ethos or were subsequently killed in the following conflicts which arose from the prophet Muhammad's teachings. Historians, including eminent Islamic personalities themselves, had cast doubt on the veracity of Mecca's uniqueness and whether it warrants acceptance in the already paradoxical notions laid down by the Koran. The revolutionary poet easily showcases the rational perspective of Mecca and its pilgrimage observances: 'I search for the way, but not the way to the Ka'ba and the temple. For I see in the former a troop of idolaters and in the latter a band of self-worshippers.' -Rumi. Rumi's statement is only a cognitive piece of the ever greater self-doubting Islamic engine. Despite purporting extreme monotheism, muslims still continue unabashed in their pilgrimage to Mecca which more often than not is seen as being contrary to Islam's monotheistic doctrine and essentially an acceptance of idolatry. Despite visiting Mecca there is no record of Guru Nanak Dev adhering to the following procedure whose fulfillment is a fundamental obligation of every devout Mohammadean: 1.) The First Five Days. The pilgrim arrives at a location a specific distance away from the sight of veneration. He consecrates himself and abstains from sexual inter-course and damaging any life. Other then the notion of sexual inter-course the Guru would have rejected the doctrine of damaging any life. There are numerous examples in his writings which emphasize on the hypocrisy of promoting oneself as a preserver of life, whereas rejecting the fact that as per the divine being's wish when one walks when crushes life underneath one's own feet! When one breathes one destroys life in the air, whatever one does one ends up causing destruction of life. As such damaging any life deliberately (excluding micro-organisms) can be considered as being anathema to religion, but that too depending on the context of the situation. The pilgrim after performing hygienic ablutions commences an idolatrous procedure which involves the kissing of the black stone. Again, despite idolatry being taboo in Islam this very practice contradicts its fundamental dictums. The Guru was dead-set against idolatry, and there is no record of him performing such a paradoxical and unethical practice. 'Had I not seen the Prophet kiss you, I would not kiss you myself.' -Caliph' Umar addressing the Black Stone. 2.) The Sixth to Tenth Day. Now begins what many individuals label as a bizzare series of actions (whose rational explanations lie in pre-Islamic pagan practices). The pilgrim leaves the enclosure where the black stone is retained and commences a climb up Mount As' Safa. He then sprints from Mount As' Safa to the pinnacle of the neighboring Al-Marwah seven times repeating various incantations and prayers. In the evening he returns to Mecca, and repeats the actions of the previous five days. On the seventh day he listens to particular orations at Mecca and on the subsequent eighth day commences a journey towards Mina. In Mina he performs the ritualistic Islamic practices and on the ninth day traverses to Mount Arafat where he performs 'Wuquf' or the right of standing. The pilgrim after listening to an oration on repentance than races to Muzdalifah where he joins into the sunset prayers. The tenth day is a day of sacrifice and celebration in the Islamic prism. Early in the morning the pilgrim leaves Muzdalifah and reaches the three pillars in Mina. Here he stones each pillar collectively in commemoration of Abraham's stoning of the Devil. He then sacrifices a goat to commemorate the success of his entire journey. A fundamental energy, provided by belief, is needed for the observance of such a ritualistic journey. Despite Guru Nanak Dev Ji reaching Mecca he did not adhere to any of the procedural steps required for the success of one's undertaking. He instead went to the central mosque and commenced a debate with the Islamic clergy after performing a miraculous action. Even the saints whose teachings were incorporated into the Sikh ethos rejected the pilgrimage to Mecca. Voluminous sources provide evidence of how the Gurus, the saints and other eminent personalities rejected the notion of the Meccan pilgrimage as being nothing more than a blot on secular monotheism and spirituality. Let us now examine the Meccan pilgrimage in it's entirety. Is it truly a Mohammadean attribute or is there a more subtle truth residing underneath the surface? Whereas an orthodox muslim would cry blasphemy at any mention of an exegesis of Mecca, a researcher will not deter from his course. Rumi and Caliph Umar were not the only Islamic personalities to doubt or subtly diverge from the authenticity of Mecca. They were followed by numerous individuals, among them being Al-Ma'rai. How could an unflinching and extremist monotheist like Muhammad give credence to a practice so paradoxical to the very ethos he claimed to be delivering from God?! The answer lies in his interactions with the pre-Islamic residents of Arabia. From adolescent he was influenced by an amalgamated myriad of Zorostrian, Pagan, Jewish and Christian formulas which he combined to revive what he called the true faith. It was a decisive catalyst of a multi-fabricated ideology which he passed of as being original. A majority of the Jewish populace played to the prophet's senses when they discarded Moses and Jesus and accepted him as the messenger of God in their stead. Thus the original Mecca was identified as Jerusalem by Muhammad. Yet when the Jews awakened to the deceit being executed right under their very noses, they immediately expelled Muhammad and his entourage. Conveniently at the onset of this expulsion the prophet received a divine commandment from God to revamp the original ethos and adopt Mecca as the new pilgrimage region. This divine version however is refuted by the prophet's intelligence, he was aware that by capturing Mecca he could re-write it's history and associations to formulate a new practice with roots in an ancient rite. In A.H. 6 the Muslims tried penetrating Mecca but were refused entry by the residents. In A.H. 7 they finally succeeded in their design, and it was then that the prophet performed the Meccan pilgrimage. 'In the tenth year A.H. Muhammad made his pilgrimage to Mecca, the old shrine of his forefathers, and every detail of superstitious observance which he fulfilled has become the norm in Islam. As Wellhausen says the result is that "we now have stations of cavalry journey without the history of the Passion." Pagan practices are explained away by inventing Moslem legends attributed to Bible characters, and the whole is an incomprehensible jumble of fictious lore."' -S. Zwemer. There is historic evidence that pre-Islamic Arabia was rife with idolatry. The Nomadic tribals were ardent worshippers of various deities encapsulated by various idols or just a singular and simplistic stone. Clement of Alexandria, ca. 190, recorded this particular fetish which was extensively rife in the pre-Islamic world. Mecca and it's inner precincts, the 'Kaaba', are not Islamic creations but were birthed in antiquity. Even the Persians allude to the cubical structure containing a black stone which was observed as being an emblem of Saturn. In the vicinity of Mecca are several other idols which have gained a superficial Muslim character by allegedly being associated with various biblical personalities. The black stone which is extensively revered by the Islamic galaxy is a meteorite and composed of iridium. It is highly doubtful whether it is truly the same stone which was gifted by Gabriel to Ishmael to construct the 'Kaaba.' The original stone was carried of as booty by the Qarmatians in the fourth century, and restored by them after a long period of time. It is highly doubtful whether they honestly retrieved and returned the original stone. Historians and archaeologists are of the mind that the stone was originally a component of a parent idol, Hubal. Wellhausen summarizes Hubal to be the original Allah, as the Meccans are known to have exclaimed 'Hurrah for Hubal' on defeating the prophet near Medina. The circumambulation of the sanctuary was another prevalent rite adopted from Pagan practices by the prophet. The seven circumbulations reflect the faith expressed by a devotee to his particular diety, these also involved the caressing and kissing of the said idol. The extensive emphasis on the evening prayers at Muzdalifah and Mina were introduced by the prophet to rebut his solar associations. The moon gifted to Guru Nanak at Mecca, which is attested to be an Islamic symbol, has it's roots in tribal theology which attested to the divinity of heavenly bodies. The excessive race between As Safa and Al-Marwa signify the muslim connection with pre-Islamic deities. Pagan devotees ran between both regions to kiss the idols of Isaf and Naila to acquire fortune. The practice of rejecting the devil via stoning is another paganistic belief. Originally it was done to acquire fortune as the seasons bypassed. One can easily summarize the pilgrimage to Mecca as being nothing more than a revamped, and rejuvenated pagan tradition given an Islamic coloring to veil it's paradoxical nature. Guru Nanak who extensively decried and criticized the hypocrisy of religions and their lies would not have attended a region of such infamy and deceit. Even Islamic extremists are stumped when asked to provide proof of the Guru ever having giving any semblance of credibility or even recognition to Mecca. His visit to the site does not classify him as an Islamist alone. His earlier ideology and concept rebut any false pretense that he was a Muslim and as such an ardent member of his creed. Yet the fundamental query, how did the Guru penetrate Mecca, still remains.The question is found in the annals of Islamic history itself. From circa 700 A.D. to 1803 A.D. Mecca was under the jurisdiction of the Ottomans. Subsequently the administration of the said region was granted to the Caliphs. It was only in the early 1900's, when the Wahabbi ideology became prevalent that it was restricted to non-muslims. Thus Guru Nanak Dev Ji (1469-1539 A.D.) easily entered the city without any constraints. 'People come from far corners of the land to throw pebbles (at Satan) and to kiss the (black stone). How strange are the things they say! Is all mankind becoming blind to the truth? O fools! Awake. The rites ye hold sacred are but a cheat contrived by men of old who lusted after wealth; and gained their lust. and died in baseness- their law is dust!' -Al-Ma'ari.
  3. Waheguru The Bramah Buta Akhara is housed inside Darbar Sahib. It use to be a Akhara of the Udasi Sikhs. Does anyone know what it is used for today. Also, where did the Udasi from this Akhara relocate too. Any information would help. Waheguru
  4. Does anyone know which of these sampardas would accept students, to learn Gurmat from there Sampardas. 1. Which Deras accepts new students, any contact information would be great. 2. What qualification you need and what kind of course is it and how long. 3. What kind of granths they teach and what do they emphasize. any information would be great. im asking because there seems to be very little information on this.