Guru Nanak in Kurukshetra
Guru Nanak Dev Ji came to kurukshetra (ਕੁਰੁਕਸ਼ੇਤਰ / ਕੁਰੁਕ੍ਸ਼ੇਤ੍ਰ) during his First Udasi on the Amavas Night of Baisakhi.
On the way he stopped at many places ad blessed the lord's name and put people on the path of piousness. He told them to be virtuous and keep away from vices.
Fair of Solar Eclipse
When he reached kurukshetra, a very big fair was on. A few hundered thousand people had gathered for the fair as they come even today. It was a day of solar ecclipse. It was the kind of pilgrimage and they were getting ready to bathe in the sacred tank there (Called Brahm sarovar). The Guru did not go there to see the fair, nor did he go there to have a bath to purify himself. He was himself pure from heavens. He went their to guide the misguided people. Generally, people believed that when there is an eclipse of the sun or moon, then two demons named rahu and ketu influence them with the intent of killing them. So, people have a bath and give charity. They believed that by the effect this bath and charity the demons go away and are not able to cast their evil influence.
This belief was not true because an eclipse is a natural phenomenon. It is only a shadow caused by movement of earth and moon in relation to the sun. Astronomers are able to predict these eclipses in advance simply by calculating the movement of earth and the moon over a period of 17 years.
THerefore Guru went there to take people out of false belief of the fear of demons and put them on true path of recitation of lord's name with love. He went to teach that one should give charity often and have a bath everyday but one should not have a mistaken belief of fear from the demons.
The lord has created the world. How he has created it he alone knows. The Sun, Moons, Stars, Earth, Humans, Animals, everything is his creation, we should not forget them. Remembering him with love. Do those things that he would like. Those things that he will not like, you also consider them bad, and avoid. Rid your mind from superstitious and erroneous beliefs. So, purpose of guru to visit kurukshetra during the fair was to take people out of forgetfulness of lord and to put them on true path of recitation of the lord's name with love, we should not deceive anyone and we should be truthful and we should have love for everyone.
Arrival of King Jagat Rai
When the time of ecclipse was near, King Jagat Rai of Hansi arrived with his mother . Some enemies had forcibly occupied his kingdom and thrown him out. He had come to kurukshetra in the hope of meeting some saint and getting his blessings. It appears, he knew that a fair was on at kurukshetra but he did not know that it was the day of eclipse. He had shot a deer on the way and had planned to camp, eat and then go to the fair and look for a good saint, but before he reached the fair he saw guru ji sitting with mardana, singing the divine hymns. The King and his mother wondered to see such a godly face. They felt that this prehaps was a real beloved of the lord. they came forward and bowed their heads and offered the deer to the guru, then they kindly told their tale of woe.
Meanwhile, having got permission the cooks started preprations of cooking the meat. The Guru Listened symphatheticaly to king's suffering, consoled him and advised him to follow true path of lord's name with love.
Response of people
Meanwhile, people saw the fire and smoke and were furious because the pandits and the people believed that to cook food during an eclipse period was an evil thing. Soon people gathered there with sticks and wands and angrily said, "Who are you to be cooking food during a solar eclipse? How dare you kill a deer and put it on to cook when the solar eclipse has begun". Some cried out that someone must be sacrificed to please the gods, the demons called Ketu and Rahu.
The Guru bid them to come and said , " you are welcome to kill Guru sahib, but be sure that if killing deer is an evil deed during solar eclipse then how could killing a man be a holy act?
Debate and Discourse
On hearing this, the people stated having second thoughts. By saying such it feels guru had lost in discussion but in actuality he had won. They felt shamed and they lowered their sticks and wands. then as it is mentioned in ""GURU NANANK PARKASH"", the guru asked the sadhus to bring a senior learned pundit or some ascetic so that the issue could be discussed seriously. They went and brought some pandits and ascetics, one of which was a pundit named NANOO but he called himself nanak. He had read in some scripture that this is the time for prophet nanak (bhavishya puran y ved vyas who have written Kalyug bedi bsaich Nanak), who is the lord's beloved to come to earth. So , he thought: If he is called nanak, then he would become famous and would be known as a prophet. He was surprised to meet another nanak in fair. He wondered that if this nanak might be the same prophet that the scripture had mentioned but since he was quite a learned pundit, he thought he might be able to win in the discusion. So he joined the other pundits who came for discussion with the guru.
He argued" in our scriptures, eating and serving meat is forbidden. Since vedic times our ancestors have not eaten meat. You are hindu. how is it that you are going against scriptures? The Guru Said,"O Pandit, if you were of some other religion, then it would have been different, but you are talking about hindu scriptures. In the vedas, puranas and other hindu scriptures, your ancestors offered meat in their yagans, they used to put meat whether rhino, horses or other animals, in the sacrificial fire and offer it to gods. Even in other hindu scriptures and the ramayana, meat is not forbidden.
During marriages goats are slaughtered and cooked. The Aryans relished meat. How can you say that it is forbidden in vedas, puranas and other Scriptures? And then you accept charity from the khatris who eat meat. Can you remain pure by taking charity from khatris? is not the charity they give tainted with killing? O Dear pundit! the thing is that you pundits have become clever at talking. You do not have good character. You have no love in your heart. You do not have devotion to the lord. You do not remember the lord. You are smart to look after your own interest and you think you can win over others with your slick arguments. Then you consider yourself as superior, but this is only being clever. A person who hasn't got insight, who hasn't got the sensation of presence of supreme lord in his mind and heart who hasn't got humility, generosity and wondrousness by seeing him in all beings, you may call him enlightened or learned or meditative or beloved of the lord, but he is nothing. One pundit says eat meat; the second pundit says,"Do not eat meat", both of them have long discussions or debates over the issues. One wins and the other looses. people watch the fun. Both are full of pride and ego. One is proud to win, the other is ashamed and feels bad. Neither of them is enlightened or meditative or devoted or in love of god. You are not doing goodness to the people. You are only showing off your ego.
There were many more discussions. All those who listened were impressed by the GUru's frank talk. Nanoo pundit then touched the guru's feet and with folded hands accepted he was wrong. He said, I am sorry, I was calling myself nanak. I did not know that you have already come to this earth. Even after so much learning, i was ignorant, proud and greedy. You are the real nanak, you are the real prophet. You are the liberator of people from the cycle of births and deaths in this un-elightened era (Kalyug). From now ownwards i shall be called nanoo and not nanak. He addressed the gathering, " Listen everybody he is true nanak, I am not nanak". In this way, all the pundits, the sadhus and the learned ones bowed to the guru. Many became his disciples and were blessed by nanak with the lord's name. The questions of the pandits have not been recorded, but the answers that the guru gave are mentioned in the guru granth sahib, the holy scripture in Malaar Rag vaar. From there one can infer what the pandits asked.
In this story, it is evident that the pandits and the people had no arguments to reply to guru nanak dev. It is as though a camel loaded with wooden logs becomes stubborn and stops walking, then the owner takes a log from the load on the camel and uses it to make the camel move. Similarly, the guru argued to make the camel move. Similarly, the guru argued if killing deer is evil during an eclipse, then how is it that you wanting to kill me could be pious. The Guru Made them understand that their thinking was wrong and made them feel ashamed.
Again when the pandits said that meat is forbidden in the scriptures, then the guru quoted from the same scriptures that their ancestors offered rhinos and other animals to sacrifice to god, then how they claim that it's forbidden. On hearing they felt humilated and stopped arguing. Then guru advised them not to fight over trivial issues. He said: LOVE the lord, recite the lord's name and live in the incessant remembrance of the lord. Thus love the lord and extend it to everybit of his creation. Be good to all people and love everybody, for all are the lord's childeren. Love the entire world.
About eating and drinking he said, "Do not eat anything that does'nt suit your body, do not eat anything that may make you unwell and anything that doesn't suit your mind. Too many spices and chillies tend to anger you, eating too much fat makes one lazy. One should eat what suits him. Each person should think this through for himself or herself. This is the religious teaching given by guru nanak for the well being of everybody in every country and everywhere.
A Miracle Happened
The Miracle that happened at that time has also been recorded. When everybody accepted his teaching and became his disciples, then the guru asked the people to open the cooking pot and eat and when it was opened then they found it was full of sweet rice pudding! all the pundits of various sects and the ordinary pepole ate sweet rice. Great guru nanak has come to liberate people from the cycle of births and deaths in this un - enlightened era of Kalyug. The guru advice to the pundits is repeated once the incessant remembrance of the lord.
Shrine Comencerates Guru's Visit
There's a Gurdwara called Gurdwara Siddh Bati Patshahi Pahili (Kurukshetra) at Kurukshetra near brahm sarovar. This is one of six gurdwaras present in Kurukshetra(including Thanesar).
- Guru Balam Sakhian of Bhai Sahib Bhai veer Singh.
- Bhai Bala Janam Sakhi.
- Visit of (Lucky 10:14, 11 April 2009 (UTC)) to Gurdwara Sahib Sidh Bati at Kurukshetra.