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Sri Dasam Granth Sahib - Questions and Answers - Book By G. S. Mann and K. Singh

Table of Contents of 'Sri Dasam Granth Sahib - Questions and Answers' By G. S. Mann and K. Singh

  Contents  
  Preface  
  Questions  
1. What is Dasam Granth? 1
2. When was Dasam Granth written? 2
3. Who wrote it and why? 2
4. What was the contribution made by the Guru's Court poets? 3
5. What invocations are used in Dasam Granth? 5
6. What is the meaning of the invocation Mukhvak? 5
7. What are the compositions in Dasam Granth? 6
8. What is Charitrapakhyan? 7
  What are the key messages in the Charitrapakhyan? 8
9. What is the original name of Dasam Granth? 9
  Historical Sources and the influence of Bachitra Natak Granth 10
10. What are some popular Shabads recited from Dasam Granth? 12
11. What can I learn from Dasam Granth? 13
12. Can it aid in my spiritual path as a Sikh? 14
  What is the link between Gatka/Shastarvidyia and the Dasam Granth? 15
13. How does it differ from Guru Granth Sahib? 16
14. How does Dasam Granth carry on the themes of Guru Granth Sahib? 16
15. Is Guru Granth Sahib the sole authority in Sikhism? 18
16. What does Dasam Granth say about religious superstition? 18
17. What is the significance of the invocation Sri Bhagauti Ji sahai? 20
18. Which compositions are used to prepare the Amrit of the Khalsa? 21
19. What do the injunctions tell us about Dasam Granth? 21
20. What does the Sikh Rahit Marayada Say? 26
21. Are there any early manuscripts of Dasam Granth? 26
22. Are there any handwritten pages by Guru Gobind Singh? 32
23. Was Dasam Granth present at Hazur Sahib in 1708? 34
24. What information does Bansavlinama give? 36
25. What does the Bansavlinama say about Bhai Mani Singh's copy of Dasam Granth? 37
26. Why do some people doubt the Tenth Guru wrote Dasam Granth? 38
27. Are the contents of Dasam Granth a copy of Hindu Scriptures like Markande Puran? 40
28. Why are compositions related to Chandi in Dasam Granth? 41
29. Was Guru Gobind Singh a worshipper of Chandi? 43
30. What does Kal mean in Dasam Granth? 43
31. Why does Guru Gobind Singh not refer to himself as 'Mahalla 10' and 'Nanak'? 44
32. Why are the names of Ram and Shyam associated with Dasam Granth? 45
33. Why was the martyrdom of Guru Arjun Dev Ji not mentioned in Dasam Granth? 47
34. Does any 18th century source claim there was any controversy over the Dasam Granth? 48
35. What does Lt Malcolm tells us about Dasam Granth in his book Sketch of the Sikhs? 49
36. What was the status of Dasam Granth during the reign of Maharaja Ranjit Singh? 49
37. Was there any research undertaken by the British on Dasam Granth in the 19th Century? 52
38. How did the British view the warrior spirit of the Sikhs? 52
39. What action did the British take to curtail the warrior spirit of the Sikhs? 55
40. What was the purpose of the Sodhak Committee? 55
41. Who was Babu Teja Singh? 57
42. Why did Teja Singh make his own Sikh scriptures? 58
43. Were certain  compositions shortened after the Sikh Rahit Marayada? 58
44. What do texts written by different sampradyas say about Dasam Granth? 60
45. Is the prakash of Dasam Granth at Takht Patna Sahib an old practice? 61
46. What is the marayada of Dasam Granth at Hazur Sahib? 63
47. How has the Sri Akal Takhat viewed Dasam Granth? 65
48. Is the prakash of Dasam Granth only confined to the Takhts of the Sikhs? 67
49. When did the last known prakash of Dasam Granth take place at the Akal Takht? 68
50. How do the messages of Dasam Granth continue to be taught in modern times? 69
  Appendices 71
  Appendix 1   Hukamnamas 73
  Appendix 2   Dasam Granth Compositions 77
  Appendix 3   Extracts from History of the Sikhs 80
  Appendix 4   Extracts  from Sketch of the Sikhs 85
  Appendix 5   Comments by Sant Teja Singh on Dasam Granth 88
  End Notes 89

 

From the Backcover of 'Sri Dasam Granth Sahib - Questions and Answers' By G. S. Mann and K. Singh

Sri Dasam Granth Sahib is the second sacred scripture of Sikhism after Guru Granth Sahib. This book gives a complete understanding of the history, compilation and relevance of Guru Gobind Singh's compositions. In recent years many fallacies and misintrepretations have crept into the study and understanding of the scripture.

The authors of this book, Gurinder Singh Mann and Kamalroop Singh have given elaborate answers to 50 questions posed on the Sikh scripture. They have considered manuscript and historical evidence to provide the readers with thoughtful insights on how the scripture should be perceived.

This book features:

  • 50 questions and 50 elaborate answers on the scripture.
  • Rare pictures of Sri Dasam Granth manuscripts.
  • Historical importance of Guru Gobind Singhs bani.
  • The Akal Takht Sahib stance on the Guru's bani.
  • The British views on the Sikh scripture.
  • The relevance of Sri Dasam Granth in modern society.

Preface

The sacred bani (word) of Guru Gobind Singh has guided the Khalsa for the last 300 years, and is part and parcel of the Sikh psyche. After Sri Adi Guru Granth Sahib, the Sri Dasam Granth Sahib by Guru Gobind Singh is the second scripture of the Sikhs. It is the source of the banis of Sikh baptism (Amrit Sanchar), daily prayer (Nitnem) and invocation (Ardas). Dasam Granth is the primary source of the terminologies, phrases, and concepts of the Khalsa. Some prominent examples are, 'Vahiguru ji ki Fateh', 'Degh Tegh Fateh', 'Panth', 'Khalsa', 'Dharam-Yudh', 'Khanda', 'Kirpan', and 'Sarab-loh.'

The Kirtan (devotional singing) of Dasam Granth is performed throughout all Gurdwaras around the world, including the main shrine of the Sikhs, Sri Harimandir Sahib, and (Amritsar). The katha (explanation) of the Granth is an important medium to understand Sikh history and philosophy. Dasam Granth Sahib is installed as the secondary scripture in two Takhts (Highest thrones of the Sikhs), Takht Hazur Sahib and Takht Patna Sahib. The primary scripture, Guru Granth Sahib was composed to be sung in Kirtan, while the secondary scripture is a part of the katha/dhadhi tradition. Many sampradayas (traditional organisations) namely the Akali Nihang Singhs, the Damdami Taksal, and others, also do prakash (ceremonially enthrone) of Dasam Granth Sahib. This takes place in their Gurdwaras, Chioni (encampments), and other centres of learning.

In recent times scholars who have not understood the intricacies of the Granth have propagated doubts. This book addresses some of the issues and is a beginner's guide for those students trying to further their knowledge on the Dasam Granth. 

The most important reference point of Sikh theology, to answer some of the questions, in this book is Guru Granth Sahib. It is clear that the questions posed about the authorship of Dasam Granth Sahib, apply equally to the Guru Granth Sahib. The same historical books and sources narrate the authorship of both scriptures. Therefore, if the sources and books are considered inauthentic then sadly the Guru Granth Sahib would have no documented history. It is clear those scholars who have created doubts about the historical sources of Dasam Granth, by employing this kind of methodology, have also indirectly attacked the history and compilation of Guru Granth Sahib.

This book considers the various sources from 17th and 18th century onwards which show the creation and compilation of both Granths. These sources illustrate the importance the Dasam Granth Sahib has in the Sikh tradition. This includes the Rahitnamas (codes of conduct), Sakhia (stories), Gurbilas (narratives of the Gurus), and tikas (commentaries). Other evidence includes British narratives and the directives of the Akal Takht Sahib. We have also presented photographs of some of the oldest manuscripts of Dasam Granth Sahib, which will benefit the reader in making their own assessment. Other scholars have previously studied the Dasam Granth Sahib and we have cited their works where necessary showing their views on the Granth.

This work is intended as a resource for students and aims to give clarity to the subject. We have worked on the compositions, manuscripts, and history of Dasam Granth Sahib for twenty years between us. This has included field trips and intensive research to locate much of the information contained in this publication. We intend to publish several books related to the Dasam Granth Sahib in the very near future. 

This book is not-for-profit and all the proceeds will go to publish further updated editions of this book.

Gurinder Singh Mann - Leicester

Kamalroop Singh - Northampton

June 2010

 

About the Authors 'Gurinder Singh Mann' and 'K. Singh' of 'Sri Dasam Granth Sahib - Questions and Answers'

The author is an independent researcher in the area of Sikh Studies. He started his research in the Dasam Granth in the late 90's which was formulated in his dissertation, 'The role of the Dasam Granth in Khalsa' (2001). This was part of his MA in south Asian religion at De-Montfort University. This is one of the first western works on the Sikh Scripture other than C.H Loehlin (1957).

Mann has given lectures internationally and throughout the UK. His '300 years of the Dasam Granth'  presentation was well recieved at the International seminar on the Sri Dasam Granth at Sacramento, California (2008). His lecture focused on the history, compilation and rare manuscripts of the Sri Dasam Granth at Sacramento, California (2008). His lecture focused on the history, compilation and rare manuscripts of the Sri Dasam Granth. The author is a regular contributor to the Sikh Panthic magazine, Sant Sipahi published in Jalander, Punjab. He has written several articles on the Sri Dasam Granth that has been received warmly. His other  articles have discussed the history of the Takht Patna Sahib as well issues regarding Sikh heritage.

He has been cited in several publications and has worked with museum curators in Sikh exhibitions in the UK, as well as taking active interest in Sikh heritage and preservation issues. He is currently working on a series of books, which includes Sikh manuscripts, early English translations of Sikh works, as well as working with the co-author of this book on a comprehensive account of Sri Dasam Granth.

Kamalroop Singh, MPhil, PhD

The author has an MPhil in Sikh studies from Birmingham University. He has completed his PhD on the textual history of the Sri Dasam Granth Sahib. This groundbreaking work examines previously unknown manuscripts and historical sources, showing how the Sri Dasam Granth was created and compiled. He has undertaken field-work locating some of the earliest recensions of the Sri Dasam Granth Sahib.

Kamalroop Singh has given many lectures and seminars internationally and throughout the UK. Some of his recent lectures included a talk at Oxford University, 'The liturgy and praxis of the Dasam Granth', and  'A discussion of the Scriptures of Guru Gobind Singh in relation to Sikh history and praxis' at the Punjab Research Group (2008). He has also worked closely with museum curators in the area of Sikh manuscripts. The author is working on various projects, including a critical examination of the Sarabloh Granth.

Since 1997, he takes annual leave to spend time researching in India. He has spent time with traditional orders like the Shromani Khalsa Panth Akali Buddha Dal Panjva Takht Chalda Vahir - commonly known as the Nihang Singhs.

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