Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji


Guru Hargobind (19 June 1595 - 3 March 1644), revered as the sixth Nanak, was the sixth of ten Gurus of the Sikh religion. He had become Guru at the young age of eleven, after the execution of his father, Guru Arjan, by the Mughal emperor Jahangir.

In front of the Harmandir Sahib in Amritsar, Guru Hargobind constructed the Akal Takht (the throne of the timeless one), as a court for consideration of temporal issues and administration of justice. The Akal Takht represents the highest seat of earthly authority of the Khalsa (the collective body of the Sikhs) today. Guru Hargobind had the longest tenure as Guru, lasting 37 years, 9 months and 3 days.


Early Life


Hargobind was born in 1595 in Wadali Guru, a village 7 km west of Amritsar, the only son of Guru Arjan, the fifth Sikh Guru. He suffered from smallpox as a child and survived a poisoning attempt by an uncle, as well as another attempt on his life, when a cobra was thrown at him. He studied religious texts with Bhai Gurdas and trained in swordsmanship and archery with Baba Buddha (not to be confused with the Buddha).

On 25 May 1606 Guru Arjan selected Hargobind as his successor and instructed his son to start a military tradition to protect the Sikh people and always keep himself surrounded by armed Sikhs for protection. Shortly afterwards, Guru Arjan was arrested, tortured and killed by order of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir, Guru Hargobind's succession ceremony took place on 24 June 1606. He put on two swords: one indicated his spiritual authority (piri) and the other, his temporal authority (miri).

He followed his martyred father's advice and always kept himself surrounded by armed Sikhs for protection. The number fifty two was special in his life, and his retinue consisted of fifty two armed men. He thus founded the military tradition in the Sikh faith. He put on two swords: one indicated his spiritual authority (piri) and the other, his temporal authority (miri). He followed his father's advice and always kept himself surrounded by armed Sikhs for protection. The number fifty two was special in his life, and his retinue consisted of fifty two armed men. He thus founded the military tradition in the Sikh faith.


Sucession


He nominated his grandson to succeed him as the seventh Guru Har Rai. He died in 1644 at Kiratpur Sahib, a town situated on the banks of river Sutlej, and was cremated on the banks of River Sutlej, where now stands Gurdwara Patalpuri.


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