Guru Angad Dev ( 31 March 1504 – 28 March 1552) was the second Sikh Guru. after Guru Nanak Sahib. He was born in Mate di Sarai or Sarai Naga, village Harike in Ferozepur district, Punjab. He was a son of small but a successful trader named Pheru Mal Ji, who was Devi Bhagat, a Khatri Hindu, and mother Mata Ramo (also known as Mata Sabhirai, Mansa Devi, and Daya Kaur) During that period Ibrahim Lodhi was an emperor, occupying Delhi throne., who was a weak ruler. The attacks of outsiders Mughals and Bloch and the internal disturbances and revolts resulted in the destruction of Mate di Sarai. As the result, Pheru Mal Ji with his family had shifted to Khdoor Sahib, situated on the bank of the River Beas, about 25 km. from Amritsar near Taran Taran.
In 1520 at the age of 16, Bhai Lehina was married to Mata Khivi Ji, daughter of Shri Devi Chand, resident of Khadur. had two sons Dasu Ji and Datu Ji, and two daughters Amro Ji and Anokhi Ji. Being a religious family and Bhagat of Durga Devi, Pheru Mal Ji used to take every year a trip of bhagats for Devi Darshan. After the death of Pheru Mal Ji, this responsibility was taken over by Bhai Lehna Ji. Once Bhai Lahna Ji heard a Shabad from the mouth of Bhai Jodha Ji, a neighbor who was a follower of Guru Nanak Sahib. He was highly touched by the words and the devotion with which he was singing. On knowing about the Bani and Guru Nanak Sahib, He made up his mind to have darshan of Guru Nanak on his trip to Devi Darshan.
ਜਿਤੁ ਸੇਵਿਐ ਸੁਖ ਪਾਈਐ ਸੋ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਸਦਾ ਸਮਾਲੀਐ
ਜਿਤੁ ਕੀਤਾ ਪਾਈਐ ਆਪਣਾ ਸਾ ਘਾਲ ਬੁਰੀ ਕਿਓਂ ਘਾਲੀਐ 11
In the midway of his trip to Devi Darshan near Kartarpur, he got separated from his jatha and proceeded towards Kartarpur Sahib. In the way, Bhai Lehna found a number of people working in a field. He met an old man and asked him about the way to the thikana (house) of Guru Nanak. That man held the saddle strings and asked to follow him as he is also going there. When they reached the destination, he told him to tie his horse in an open space and directed him to a door, where Guru Nanak Dev Ji used to sit. When Lehna went inside and bowed before Guru, he became surprised to see that, the person who took him to this place was Nanak himself. Tears came from his eyes thinking that all the way he was on the horse comfortably and Guru was walking on the foot. Guru Nanak asked his name and said,” then why u are crying, your name is Lehina, you are taker and I have to give. Lehnadar(shhookar) are always on the horses and dendar(who have taken karza from shhookar)) are on foot. His first meeting with Satgur Nanak Sahib brought a revolution in his life to see his spiritual look and his humbleness to this extreme. He forgot Devi darshan and sent a message that “do not wait for me as I am not joining the trip”.
He spent almost seven years in Kartarpur (1532-1539) in the service of Guru Sahib and passed in every test Guru Nanak Sahib has given him to know, if he is fit to be a Guru, leaving his own sons who were not. From morning to evening, he used to serve Sangat with utmost love and devotion, help in the langar, in farming, and always ever ready to obey his next order without but and why. He has overpowered his five sins ( kam,krodh lobh, moh, hnkar) and prooved a sincere devotee towards Guru Sahib. Having subjected Lehna’s discipleship to various tests over the years, Guru Nanak touched Bhai Lehna and given him the name Angad (“My own ang”), and designated him as Guru Angad, the second guru of the Sikhs, instead of choosing one of his own sons. All the Sangat bowed before Bhai Lehane and accepted him as a Guru but Sri Chand and Prithi Chand, sons of Guru Nanak had shown him their back. Baba Budha had performed the ceremony.
After Gurgadi, Guru Nanak Sahib ordered him to go to Khdoor Sahib for Parchar and Parsar as he knew that his sons would treat him badly. After some time Guru Nanak Sahib came to meet Guru Angad Dev in Khdoor Sahib and took him back to Kartarpur Sahib knowing his end to be near which happened on October 1539.
Guru Angad Dev Ji had a creative personality and was the lord of great and rich in divine qualities by which he first became a true Sikh and then a great Guru, Guru Angad Dev also called ‘Lahina Ji’. He was very much down to earth, understanding, and open-minded. He thought staying in Kartar Sahib may arise conflict with the sons of Guru Nanak and the people of other sects, who were jealous about newly developed Sikhi. On 2nd October Guru, Angad Dev Ji left Kartarpur after handing over all the wealth that belongs to Guru Nanak to Baba Sri Chand and came to the village of Khdoor Sahib, near Goindwal Sahib because he never wanted to compete or have a conflict with Baba Sri Chand.
Guru Angad ji became so much lost and unable to bear the separation from Guru Nanak Sahib that without tellling anybody, retired into a room in a disciple’s house in a state of Vairagya in Khdoor Sahib. Baba Buddha later discovered him after a long search and requested him to return for Guruship. The Gurbani says the words what Guru Angad Dev ji felt and uttered that time “Die before the one whom you love, to live after he dies is to live a worthless life in this world”. was the first hymn in Guru Granth Sahib by Guru Angad and signifies the pain he felt at the separation from Guru Nanak.
Ultimately He controlled his emotions and realised his duties towards Sikh Sangat and started working on the mission of Guru Nanak. He started sikhi parchar and persaar, drafted programmes to strenthen sangat, and taken care of newborn Sikhi of Guru Nanak which has to be saved from Guru’s, sons, sanyasis, jogi brahmans and moughal hkoomat.
His Guruship life starts in Khdoor Sahib. He used to get early morning, do Simran, hold darbar, after which he used to translate the Gurbani written by Guru Nanak Sahib, propagate his teachings, his mission, (Kirat Karna, vand chhakna, and Simran Karna) to attach more and more Sangat with Guru Nanak Sahib. He used to talk about the need and importance of having a Guru, the importance of sangat and pangat which were the basics on which the Sikhi is generated. He propagated the ideas of Guru Nanak Sahib in both forms, written and emotional. He spoke deeply and have open discussions about spiritualism with yogis, saints, soofis of various beliefs and sects
Langar and community work
The Institution of Langar in Dharamsala was maintained and developed by Guru Angad Dev Ji’swife Mata Khivi, who personally used to supervise work in the kitchen and served food to the community as well as the money to the poor and needy which is mentioned in Sri Guru Granth Sahib also. All the offerings used to go in the common fund. Guru Angad Dev Ji used to earn his own living by twisting coarse grass into strings which were used for cots. It demonstrated that it is necessary and honorable to do even the meanest productive work as parasitic living was not encouraged in Sikhi. and is not consance with mystic and moral path.
Visitors from near and far could get a free meal in a communal seating also treating it as a place of rest and refuge. In Khdoor Sahib, when Guru Angad Dev was having darbar and was giving a spitual peace to everyone,.Mata Khivi use to supervise Langar to the poor, needy and sangat who came from far away to listen Guru Sahib. She was very graceful and humble lady who used to treat rich or poor, low or high caste on equal footings. When ever she came across any poor or needy person, she quitely used to put money in their pocket which paved way to develop a stronger relationship between sikhs and general public.Thinking about the health of jwans of Mal Akhare of Guru Angad Dev she has started using khee and milk in abandence in the Langar. Varan of Balwant is a witness to prove it,
once a mandal of jogies came to Khdoor Sahib. There is always great rush and khule bhandare in the langar of Mata Khivi. They were surprised to see and asked Guru Sahib, You do not have any Jageer,property or money, so where from all this langar is managed”?. They wanted to donate some Jageers in the name of Langar but Guru Sahib said poliitely no. This is run by Sangat and I want this should be the effort of Sangat only not by any single person or sect. Guru Sahib he uttered this shabad,’
‘ਲੰਗਰੁ ਚਲੈ ਗੁਰ ਸਬਦਿ ਹਰਿ ਤੋਟਿ ਨ ਆਵੀ ਖਟੀਐ॥ ਖਰਚੇ ਦਿਤਿ ਖਸਮ ਖਸੰਮ ਦੀ ਆਪ ਖਹਦੀ ਖੈਰਿ ਦਬਟੀਐ॥’ (ਸ੍ਰੀ ਗੁਰੂ ਗ੍ਰੰਥ ਸਾਹਿਬ, ਅੰਕ 967)
Relationship with the Mughal Empire
At around 1540,The second Mughal Emperor of India Humayun visited Guru Angad at around 1540 after Humayun lost the Battle of Kannauj, and thereby the Mughal throne to Sher Shah Suri. According to Sikh hagiographies, when Humayun arrived in Gurdwara Mal Akhara Sahib at Khadur Sahib, Guru Angad Dev ji was sitting and teaching children. The failure to greet the Emperor immediately angered Humayun. Humayun lashed out but the Guru reminded him that the time when you needed to fight you lost and ran away and now you are using power of your sword against fqueers. Hamyun felt sorry and begged for his blessings. Guru Angad is said to have blessed the emperor, and reassured him that someday he will regain the throne.
He established hundreds of new Sikh Centers and thus strengthened the base of Sikhism. Guru Angad Sahib Ji visited all the important places and centers established by Guru Nanak Sahib and preached Sikhism. He established hundreds of new Sikh Centers and thus strengthened the base of Sikhism. With his efforts,The Sikh Panth became stronger and established its own religious identity.
He composed 63 shlokas, which are inscribed in Guru Granth Sahib., 2 Sri Rag, Majh di var- 12, Asa di Var 15, Sorth di Var 1, Soohi di Vaar, 11, Ramkali di Var7, Sarang di Vaar 9, Malar di var 5 Maaroo di var -1
Guru Sahib instead of writing his own Hymns concentrated on consolidating the Hymns of Guru Nanak Sahib He also supervised the writing down of Nanak’s hymns by Bhai Paidha Mokha in Punjabi and scrutinize the resulting compilation, preparing the way for a Sikh scripture. He learned about the details of facts of Guru Nanak Sahib’s life from Bhai Bala Ji and the disciples of Guru Nanak Sahib, who used to attend Guru Nanak Darbar, and were very much present and close with Baba Nanak. He wrote a biography of Guru Nanak Sahib which is the first biograpy in Sikh Itihas.
Guru Angad JI popularised the present form of Gurmukhi Script which became the mediam of writing of Punjabi Language as well the writings of Hymns of Guru Sahiban.Earlier the punjabi Lanquage was written in the Landa or Mahajani Script which had no vovel. So there was a need to develop a script which could reproduce the hymns of Gurus with true meaning and message. The script soon became popular with the public in Punjab especially among Sikhs
He started the construction work of a new city at Goindwal near Khadur Sahib and assigned Guru Amar Das ji to look after this construction work. The Sikh Panth established its own religious identity in the time of Guru Angad Dev Ji..
He took special interest in child education. He has done great efforts to prpagate child education by opening first formal school in Khadur Sahib. He developed Gurmukhi language and got prepared multiplied gurmukhi kaidas for the distribution to the children.
Being a great patron of wrestling, started a Mall Akhara for youths in many villages of Khandur Sahib, where spirtual, physical .mental exercises, martial arts, and wrestling was taught. He placed emphasis on physical excises, to remain fit .and staying away from tobacco and other toxic. Wrestling was done after daily prayers which also included games and light wrestling under his supervision.When Guru Hargobind Sahib added Meeri with Peeri, most of jawans for his army were from Mal Akharas established by Guru Angad Dev Ji.
Before his death, on 29 March 1552.Guru Angad, following the example set by Guru Nanak, nominated Guru Amar Das as his successor (The Third Nanak), instead of choosing his own son. Guru Amar Das had been a Vaishnava Hindu, reputed to have gone on some twenty pilgrimages into the Himalayas, to Haridwar on river Ganges. About 1539, on one such Hindu pilgrimage, he met a sadhu, to whom he had served meal. During conversation, Sadhu asked him about his Guru. When Guru said that I have not have Guru yet, he became so furious that he showed repentness to have his meal who have no Guru and left him immediatly. After that Amar Das ji became sad and was in search of Guru . On his return, he heard Bibi Amro, the daughter of the Guru Angad who had married his brother’s son, singing a hymn by Guru Nanak. Amar Das learnt from her about Guru Angad, and with her help met the second Guru of Sikhism in 1539 .
.(The Third Nanak) who has displayed relentless devotion and service to Guru Angad for 12 years before Gurgadi, adopting Guru Angad as his spiritual Guru, who was much younger than his own age. Sikh tradition states that he woke up in the early hours to fetch water for Guru Angad’s bath, cleaned and cooked for the volunteers with the Guru, as well devoted much time to meditation and prayers in the morning and evening. His untiring services to the second Guru, his seva for Sikhi and his humility has given him the status of Third Guru.