Foundation day of "Khalsa Panth" 2021,
When crop is ripe and ready, then the framers start swinging happily, this joy is celebrated as Vaishaki. Praying for country’s happiness, greenery and prosperity, people express their happiness by doing charity and lightning of Deepak. The logic behind the Bhagra dance is that, nature has bestowed them with good crops after whole year of hard work. It is welcomed by the people of this place through celebrations. Actually, this festival is a crop harvesting festival.
On one side this festival is related to agriculture and farmers, on the other, it is a day of establishment of Khalsa Panth which increases it’s importance. This day bring many happiness together. Baishaki is an advent of new year’s day. Being the foundation day for Sikh Panth, this day has a glorious history.
Vaisakh Month: A Month of Festivals
Vaisakh, not being a festival of month is rather a group of festivals. The second Guru if Sikh’s, Sri Anand Dev ji was born in this month. According to a mythological narration, Lord Bhrama created the universe today. Sri Vikrami era was started today by king Vikramaaditya. Sri Ram had his enthronement on this day(Rajyahishek ). Important events like beginning of Navratra, birth of Sant Jhulelal of Sind prant, foundation of Arya samaj by Maharishi Dayanand, RajTilak of Dharmraj Yuddhistir, Mahavir Jayanti etc. are linked to this month.
Establishment of Khalsa Panth on Vaisakhi
The literal meaning of Khalsa is pure, holy. the tenth Guru of Sikh, Guru Govinda Singh, established today the Khalsa Panth. The sole aim of establishing this Panth was, to free from the atrocities of Mughal emperors ruling at that time. To finish the feeling of inequality also, he gave a title of “Panch Pyare” on the day of Baisakhi.
These Panch Pyare where of different caste. They were fed with Amrit(sacred nectar of immortality), and got the title of Singh for himself after drinking Amrit from there hands. This way, today Guru Govinda Singh gave a religious enlightening to Sikha people as well as gave a new form to the religious beliefs, to the societies. This day, in Gurudwara especially in Anandpur Sahib, Aardas, Shabad and Kirtans are performed with distribution of Prasad and arrangement of Langar is done.
To understand the importance of Khalsa Panth, we will need to go back to the history of April 1699. As per the order of Guru, on the day of Baishaki, a bed was decorated in Anandpur sahib. The whole of Sikh community was gathered here. That time, the tenth Guru, Sri Guru Govinda Singh stood up and asked for five head to save humanity. Listening this, the gathered public got motionless.
From that crowd, a Sikh got up with courage and said for saving his religion he is ready to give his head. His name was Daya Ram. Guru ji took Daya Ram inside a tent, and Guru ji came out after sometime, with a sword having blood on it. Then he asked for a new head, and the process followed for five times. Each time Guru ji used to take the person taking initiative inside the tent and return with a sword of blood.
Fifth time everyone saw, the five Sikh cam out of tent wearing Sri Sahib dress. Tenth Guru gave the the name “Panch Pyare” and made them taste Amrit, and gave them recognition as Sikh. From that day guru made it compulsory for Sikh's to have a Kesh, Kangha, Kada, Kachha and Kripan. This way, the foundation of Khalsa Panth was laid down.
Vaisakhi Festival: Beginning of New Year
Vaishaki is not the festival of only Sikh society. But, in Kerala, Assam, Orissa, it is celebrated as the coming of new year. With the happiness of new year’s arrival, many new resolution and new works are performed today.
Vishu Pujan for Malayalam Community
The Malyalam society celebrate Vaishaki as the new year. The welcoming of new year for the society is done by having a vision of Vishukkani. In Kerala, this day, traditional dancing and singing is done, together with this, fireworks are enjoyed. Specially in the temple of Ayyahpa, some big worshiping is offered. Vishu mean “Sri Krishna” and Kani means “basket”
On this festival of Vishukkani, Lord Krishna is placed in a basket, which is decorated with jack fruit, pumpkin, yellow flowers, glass, coconut, etc. First, the head of the family close his eyes and have a vision of Vishukkani. At many places, this work is done first by children. The purpose of having God’s vision is basically for making the full year auspicious.
Baisakhi: Celebrated as Bihu in Assam
Assamese celebrate the day of Vaishaki in a new form. Here the festival is for two days. A day before Baisakhi is celebrated as Bihu in which cattle are worshiped. And on the day of Vaishaki, Rangili Bihu is celebrated.
On this day, many cultural activities are organised. As no festival is celebrated without delicious food, so, in recipes, Poha is enjoyed with yogurt. Assam’s life is depended on cultivation, hence, people wish to have rain for the whole year.