Guru Amar Das (Gurmukhi: ਗੁਰੂ ਅਮਰ ਦਾਸ) was the third of the Sikh Gurus.
Guru Angad, following the example set by Guru Nanak, nominated Guru Amar Das as his successor (The Third Nanak) before rejoining with God. Guru Angad presented all the holy scripts, including those he received from Guru Nanak, to Guru Amar Das.
Sri Guru Amar Das Sahib Ji was born in 1479. Guru Amar Das used his spirituality to fight against caste restrictions, caste prejudices and the curse of untouchability.
Guru Amar Das strengthened the tradition of the free kitchen, Guru Ka Langar (started by Guru Nanak), and made his disciples, whether rich or poor, whether high born or low born (according to the hindu caste system), have their meals together sitting in one place. Guru Amar Das thus established social equality amongst the people. Guru Amar Das introduced the Anand Karaj marriage ceremony for the Sikhs, replacing the hindu form.
Guru Amar Das also completely abolished amongst the Sikhs, the custom of Sati, in which a married woman was forced to burn herself to death in the funeral pyre of her husband. The custom of Paradah (Purda), in which a woman was required to cover her face with a veil, was also done away with.
The Sakhi (story) of Guru Amar Das's early life and where he was born.
Bhai Amar Das searches for the True Guru.
There were many occasions where Bhai Amar proved his selflessness and devotion to Guru Angad. In serving Guru Angad, Bhai Amar became known as Bhai Amar Das.
Guru Angad helped found Goindwal but humbly refused to have the settlement named after himself.
There were many incidents that had helped Guru Angad decide who his successor would be. However, there was a final test.
Guru Amar Das knew that it was important to build houses at Goindwal so that people could start settling there.
Once the 84 steps were created, Guru Amar Das explained that those Sikhs who completed Japji Sahib on each step with firm faith would achieve liberation with God and not suffer the pains of birth and death in future.
One day, Guru Amar Das sent for his nephew Sawan Mal and handing him his handkerchief, asked him to go to Raja Hari Chand of Haripur to request wooden building materials.
After Guru Angad, Datu proclaimed himself as Guru at Khadoor but the Sikhs did not recognise him as such.
The Sangat began to miss Guru Amar Das, and as the days passed they grew restless.They began to hold Datu in contempt, noone bothered showing him any respect. They were determined, to get their beloved Guru back.
People of all castes and creeds were settling at Goindwal. Guru Amar Das preached lessons of forgiveness and endurance, but his enemies only returned evil for the favours he had intended them. When the Khojas saw that even muslims were embracing Sikhism they turned against the Guru.
Hari Ram belonged to Marwaha Khatri dynasty and was very proud of his high caste. So he was against the tradition of langar (common kitchen) established by Guru Amar Das where everyone was treated as equals.
Bhai Daya Singh (one of the original Punj Pyare) and Mata Damodari (Guru Hargobind's wife) were descendants of Bhai Paro.
Once Bhai Lalu, who was a banker's son of the village of Dalla, joined Bhai Paro in one of his visits to Guru Amar Das.
Prema became a prey to such virulent leprosy that his fingers and toes dropped off, his body melted away, blood trickled from it, and flies, by settling on it and stinging him, completed his misery.
Bhai Prema was lame in one leg and walked with great difficulty. And yet, he was such a staunch Sikh of Guru Amar Das that, every morning, he would religiously carry a pot of milk for the Guru's langar.
There was a hindu pandit called Beni, who expounded the Veds and the Shastars. Having defeated, in argument, the pandits of all the great cities of India, he turned his direction towards Goindwal.
Kingurinath, at the head of a company of Jogis, visited Guru Amar Das at Goindwal. Kingurinath held a discussion with the Guru on Yoga. Guru Amar Das denied that Yoga was the way to become holy.
Emperor Akbar had heard favourable accounts of Guru Amar Das. When it was time for the Emperor Akbar to make his periodical visit to from Delhi to Lahore he decided to visit the Guru.
The hostility of the hindus now began to assert itself even more offensively than before. The racist khatris and brahmins sought to preemptively destroy Sikhi before it could fully establish itself.
Guru Amar Das makes a journey to Haridwar in order to teach the hindu masses the truth about God and their beliefs.
There was a rich Khatri merchant named Ganga Das or Gangu, as he was popularly known, of the Bassi clan. It so happened that due to some mistake Gangu's business suffered, and he became bankrupt.
The Governor of Kasur was a proud man who let his pride become his downfall.
A Bairagi named Mai Das, a most devout worshipper of the hindu god Krishan, renounced his fake beliefs and became a Sikh.
Guru Amar Das revealed many truths and taught all those willing to learn and change for the better.
Gurmat Gyan (Knowledge)
Other Gurbani Contributors