Bachitar Natak and Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev
Bichitra Natak (or Bachittar/Vichitra) (Gurmukhi: ਬਚਿਤ੍ਰ ਨਾਟਕ (meaning Resplendent Drama)) is the a beautiful composition, a memoir of Guru Gobind Singh, which he added in Dasam Granth, commonly known as his Brief Autobiography.
About Guru Arjan, Bachitar Natak mentioned historical fact that he got Guru Ship from Guru Ram Das and transferred it to Guru Har Gobind:
ਰਾਮਦਾਸ ਹਰਿ ਸੋ ਮਿਲ ਗਏ॥ ਗੁਰਤਾ ਦੇਤ ਅਰਜਨਹਿ ਭਏ॥
ਜਬ ਅਰਜਨ ਪ੍ਰਭਲੋਕ ਸਿਧਾਏ॥ ਹਰਿਗੋਬਿੰਦ ਤਿਹ ਠਾਂ ਠਹਰਾਏ॥ 11॥
In Chandi Di Vaar, It is mentioned that Guru Arjan worshiped the same Bhagauti(Gurmat), which was worshiped by Guru Nanak.
ਪ੍ਰਿਥਮ ਭਗੌਤੀ ਸਿਮਰਿ ਕੈ, ਗੁਰੁ ਨਾਨਕ, ਲਈਂ ਧਿਆਇ ॥
ਫਿਰ, ਅੰਗਦ ਗੁਰ, ਤੇ ਅਮਰਦਾਸੁ, ਰਾਮਦਾਸੈ, ਹੋਈਂ ਸਹਾਇ ॥
ਅਰਜਨ, ਹਰਿਗੋਬਿੰਦ ਨੋ ਸਿਮਰੌ, ਸ੍ਰੀ ਹਰਿਰਾਇ ॥
An argument posed by Anti Dasam Granth lobby on Bachitar Natak composition:
ਗੁਰੂ ਅਰਜਨ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਜੀ ਦੀ ਪੰਜ ਦਿਨ ਤਕ ਅਤਿ ਦੁਖਦਾਈ ਤਸੀਹੇ ਝੱਲ ਕੇ ਦਿਤੀ ਸ਼ਹਾਦਤ ਦਾ ਸਾਰੇ ਗ੍ਰੰਥ ਵਿੱਚ ਕਿਤੇ ਵੀ ਜ਼ਿਕਰ ਨਹੀਂ, ਕਿਉਂ? ਜੇ ਇਹ ਲਿਖਤ ਦਸਮ ਨਾਨਕ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਜੀ ਦੀ ਹੁੰਦੀ ਤਾਂ ਇਹ ਅਣਗਹਿਲੀ ਕਦੇ ਨਾ ਹੁੰਦੀ।
Translation: There is no place for Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Sahib in whole Dasam Granth. Why? If this is writing of Guru Gobind Singh then he could not ignore this event.
The question is generally posed while giving Reference to following hymns Guru Tegh Bahadur, stating that if Guru Tegh Bahadur could be mentioned why not Guru Arjan Dev? Following are hymns from Bachitar Natak mentioning martyrdom of Guru Tegh Bahadur:
ਤਿਲਕ ਜੰਞੂ ਰਾਖਾ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਤਾਕਾ॥ ਕੀਨੋ ਬਡੋ ਕਲੂ ਮਹਿ ਸਾਕਾ॥
ਸਾਧਨਿ ਹੇਤ ਇਤੀ ਜਿਨਿ ਕਰੀ॥ ਸੀਸ ਦੀਆ ਪਰ ਸੀ ਨ ਉਚਰੀ॥ 13॥
ਧਰਮ ਹੇਤ ਸਾਕਾ ਜਿਨਿ ਕੀਆ॥ ਸੀਸ ਦੀਆ ਪਰੁ ਸਿਰਰੁ ਨ ਦੀਆ॥
ਦੋਹਰਾ॥ ਠੀਕਰਿ ਫੋਰਿ ਦਿਲੀਸਿ ਸਿਰਿ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਪੁਰ ਕੀਯਾ ਪਯਾਨ॥
ਤੇਗ ਬਹਾਦਰ ਸੀ ਕ੍ਰਿਆ ਕਰੀ ਨ ਕਿਨਹੂੰ ਆਨ॥ 15॥
ਤੇਗ ਬਹਾਦਰ ਕੇ ਚਲਤ ਭਯੋ ਜਗਤ ਕੋ ਸੋਕ॥
ਹੈ ਹੈ ਹੈ ਸਭ ਜਗ ਭਯੋ ਜੈ ਜੈ ਜੈ ਸੁਰ ਲੋਕ॥ 16॥
Let us try to analyse, why Guru Gobind Singh left this incident from different angles.
Martyrdom of Guru Arjan not in Guru Granth Sahib
Guru Granth is central scripture of Sikhism. It covers various aspects of Spiritual Life and contains various Historical narrations related to Bhagats. For example:
- Udasi of Guru Nanak to Kurukshetra etc.
- Discussion of Guru Amardas During Death - Ramkali Sadd
- Discussion of Siddhas and Guru Nanak - Sidh Gosti
- Elephant Attack - Execution Trial on Bhagat Kabir
- Elephant Attack - Execution Trial on Bhagat Namdev
- Babar Attack on Hindustan and fight of Mughal and Pathans - Babarvani
- and many more...
These narrations are mixed with Spiritual tone and explained the life of Bhagats and attitude towards life in difficult times.
Among historical events, Martyrdom of Guru Arjan, which is also important aspect, is missing from Guru Granth Sahib.
No Gurus mentioned this incident
After Guru Arjan Dev, there were five other Gurus:
- Guru Hargobind, Guru Har Rai, Guru Har Krishen haven't written any Shabad or Hukamnama provides information that Guru Arjan was martyred.
- Guru Tegh Bahadur had written 115 Hymns and none of them mentioned Guru Arjan's martyrdom, as it was his first duty.
The four Gurus remained silent about this incident, which arose another question that Why these four Gurus avoid mentioning this incident?
Guru Arjan Martyrdom Case
Diwan Chandu, was minister who has brain washed Government by calling Arjan, an Anti Government Element, working against Islam and provided fabricated reports which lead to capital punishment of Guru Arjan.
Miyaan Meer, an influential Peer, explained personally to Jahangir that miscarriage of justice was done and an innocent person had been put to death by capital punishment on base of fabricated reports by Diwan Chandu. Guru Arjan had no ill will against Government. Government want to make sure that Nanaks have no ill wish against Government. To prove this, Guru Hargobind was sent to Jail to convince Hindu Rulers to handshake with Mughal government. Guru Hargobind convinced 52 Rulers who were later released from Jail.
Then, Jahangir Government apologized for wrongful execution of Guru Arjan and given Diwan Chandu to Guru Har Gobind. This was an important decision carried out by Government, where culprit is given in hands of victims for justice. Later Diwan Chandu was put onto death by Stoning.
As Mughals already provided justice in this matter and demanded apology for there mistake and Guru Hargobind convinced for the same.
The Matter was closed.
The argument/question is treated as knowingly hurting of sentiments, Because:
- This argument question at negligence of Four Gurus, before Guru Gobind Singh, especially Guru Tegh Bahadur for not mentioning martyrdom of Guru Arjan in any of their writings.
- This argument questions Guru Granth Sahib, which is way to live life for not taking Guru Arjan martyrdom as way of living life, wheen it contains Hymns depicting life events of various Gurus and Bhagats.
For healthy discussion, argument should be based on, what is present in writing, not on the base of what is not present. Sikhs refrain for making baseless or controversial arguments.
The reason for not mentioning this incident in Dasam Granth might be: Silence of Son(Hargobind) and Grandson(Tegh Bahadur) on this incident, because the case was closed, with Justice and apology by Centre Mughal Government.