First Martyr for Human RIghts? Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji

Kashmiri Hindu pundits meeting Guru Tegh Bahadurji to ask for help against forced conversions by the Islamic Mughal emperor

Kashmiris meeting Guru Tegh Bahadurji to ask for help against forced conversions by the Islamic Mughal emperor

(CHAKRA) Martyrdom of Guru Tegh Bahadur is a religious observance for the Sikhism followers. Sikhism followers remember the martyrdom of Guru Tegh Bahadur on November 24. He was beheaded as he refused to be forced to accept Islam as his religion and now stands as an example of freedom of choosing each one’s religion. Guru Tegh Bahdur Martyrdom Day is one of the ten most important festivals observed by all Sikhs. Like in the other festivals it is custom for all Sikhs in a community to organize a procession, a Prabhat Pherys, where the Panj Pyares lead the procession and are followed by musicians, dancers and gatka teams performing martial arts.


Guru Tegh Bahadur became the 9th Guru of Sikhi on 20 March 1665 ,  following in the footsteps of his grand-nephew, Guru Har Krishan. Guru Tegh Bahadur was executed on the orders of Islamic Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in Delhi

In 1675, some Kashmiris  sought Guru Tegh Bahadur’s help. The Mughal emperor was forcibly converting them to Islam under the threat of torturous death. Even though the Guru followed a different faith than many other Kashmiris, he believed in everyone’s right to practice one’s own religion freely, a core principle of his Sikh faith. The same principle is now espoused in the First Amendment (1791) to the U. S. Constitution, allowing free exercise of religion.

The Guru advised theKashmiris to tell the emperor that they would embrace Islam if the Guru did so. He also encouraged people of all faiths to stand up to oppression and practice their faiths freely without fear. One of the Guru’s hymns says: Neither frighten anyone, nor be frightened (translated from Siri Guru Granth Sahib).

As anticipated, the Guru was arrested. When lavish incentives and extreme threats failed to sway the Guru and his companion Sikhs, the Sikhs were burnt alive, boiled alive and sawed alive in front of the Guru by Muslims. On still refusing to waver from his principle, the Guru himself was martyred.

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  1. Srikanth says

    Guru Tegh Bahadur’s martyrdom By Koenraad Elst

    Guru Tegh Bahadur’s martyrdom is usually interpreted as an act of self-sacrifice for the sake of the Kashmiri Pandits threatened with forced conversion. As such, it is a classic Hindutva proof of the Hinduness of Sikhism, though it is also a classic neo-Sikh proof of the “secularism” of Sikhism (“showing concern even for people of a different religion, viz. Hinduism”). However, this whole debate may well rest upon a simple misunderstanding.

    In most indo-Aryan languages, the oft-used honorific mode of the singular is expressed by the same pronoun as the plural (e.g. Hindi unkâ, “his” or “their”, as opposed to the non-honorific singular uskâ), and vice-versa; by contrast, the singular form only indicates a singular subject. The phrase commonly translated as “the Lord preserved their tilak and sacred thread” (tilak-janjû râkhâ Prabh tâ-kâ), referring to unnamed outsiders assumed to be the Kashmiri Pandits, literally means that He “preserved b is tilak and sacred thread”, meaning Tegh Bahadur’s; it is already unusual poetic liberty to render “their tilak and sacred thread” this way, and even if that were intended, there is still no mention of the Kashmiri Pandits in the story.

  2. Preeti Bhatt says

    It seems we kashmiri hindus were needlessly paying our respect to sikh guru, Teg Bahadur for saving the lives of past ancestors.

  3. Harpal Singh says

    Srikanth, I cant even begin to tell you how many categorical errors and historical roors are in Mr. Elst’s
    article. As for Preeti, you really need to form an intelligent opinion for yourself after reviewing varioius different sources before you stop paying respect to an individual who gave his life for the freedom of many.

  4. Prabhu says

    A stupid attempt to rewrite history and interpret things that happened 300 years back to suit the new Hinduist ideology.

  5. Joshi says

    Srikanth, we should not promote a foreigner who does not know anything about the Indian past…..People like Koenraad Elst, who form an armschair judge like opinion sitting outside India can never understand who really was GuruTegh Bahadur and how he protected India…..The Sikh Gurus are the gurus of the whole India and Sikhism is not separate from Hinduism. Both are sisters who are grounded deeply in the Indian history. By talking rubbish about Sikhism and the Sikh gurus, Koenraad is creating his own doom, unpopularity and unauthenticity.

  6. Srikanth says

    Harpal Singh, Just saying someone has made categorical errors doesnt become proof itself.Provide the proof or just face the truth that this is another great myth

  7. Kaycee says

    If anyone has read the bani then you will know the SIKHISM WAS DEFENDING DHARMA…..

    The amount of mention of krishna, rama, sita, lakshmi in the bani is overwhelming. Condrad Elst is WRONG. Sikhism was a direct defense of india with a direct attack on muslims.

    For over 600years a fight for freedom took place, whether they where rajput first, then maraths, or then the khalsa each was fighting for DHARMA. Sikhism is s reflection of hinduism, buddhist, and jainism it is firmly within the dharmic panth….SIKHISM was created to instill NEW passion and energy into fighting islam. Guru nanak states he smashed the idol worhshippers, the same hindu tribal kings that where allied with moghuls. The vedas themselves state that idol worship is the VERY first step to truth. The Bani is an exact reflection of vendanta….where the formless aspect of god is elevated and the formed aspect demoted. Guru Gobing singh was correct when he said i destroyed your idol,. because no stone can protect you, and that YOU MUST FIGHT FOR WHATS RIGHT!!!!……the first idol worhsippers where the BUDDHIST…not hindus. But to get the message of love and truth, people NEEDED A FOCAL POINT …thats where idol has come about. To generate love and compassion is the highest point of devotion, even if you dont know the vedas, or the bani, but if you have pure love, then you are with god, and thats the MAIN PURPOSE OF IDOL, to create that first step, to love the formless and the form…..but the overall objective is to rise about the idol and see the formless in everything as that it the highest aspect of god.

  8. Sukhvinder Singh says

    @srikant first of all we r Sikhs we r not Hindus. Shri guru Nanak Dev g reject ur Hindu ideology when he refuse to wear janeyu & worshiping rat,cat,snake,monkey, cow, donkey, etc etc ok. Shri guru teg bahadur g martyrdom for Hindus cus Hindus were so darpok. Sikhs always help Hindus cus they r darpok. Hindus were so scared from Mughals. Even the Mughals rape their girls infront of Hindus & they did nothing then Sikhs come forward to save the girls. 98% shaheeds were Sikhs in freedom fight even their population is only 2% and Hindu shaheeds was only 1% even their population was more than 85%.

  9. Kaycee says

    @Sukhvinder Singh…shut up you idiot, FOR OVER 400years HINDUS STOPPED muslims!!…

    AND GURU TEGH BAHADUR WAS DEFENDING HINDUS!!..no one else!!..

    so before you USE sikhi and gurus for your own agenda you SHOULD SHUT YOUR MOUTH before you say something that will mean you can never return to sikhi,

    You make no SENSE.. what so EVER, have you read the bani???….I DOUBT IT!!!….BECAUSE IF YOU HAD then you would know the DEEP connection between sikhi and hinduism,.,
    NO ONE CAN DENY THAT
    NO ONE CAN DENY THAT BUDDISM, JAINISM AND SIKHISM ARE BRANCHES OF HINDUISM..

    SO what you talk about rat snake etc, DOES guru nanak state that GOD IS WITHIN EVERYTHING??

    yes or no??…..

    The Glory of God is the Sound-current of the Naad, the Celestial Music of Bliss, and the Wisdom of the Vedas.Speaking and listening, the silent sages and humble beings join together, in the Realm of the Saints.The Guru is Shiva, the Guru is Vishnu and Brahma; the Guru is Paarvati and Lakhshmi.
    ~Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Ji p. 489

  10. Sukhvinder singh says

    @kaycee U shut up if Hindus stopes Muslims for 400 years then why were u Hindus crying all the time that Mughals distroyed ur mandirs & looted india. For ur kind information all da Muslims who lived in india today they all was Hindus & they converted to Islam by Mughals.

    And Sri guru NANAK DEV G said that god is everywhere but that doesnt means that u can worship a stone like u guys do.

    We r SIKHS we r not Hindus we newer worship rat, snake,elephant,cow & we also don’t drink cowpiss like u guys do. The whole world recognize us as a different religion. If today Hindus have power in india & they r saying that Sikhs r Hindus that doesnt mean that we r going to convert into Hinduism.
    Anyway do u read ur Vedas can u tell me where u find this word “”HINDU”".
    Iranis gave u guys this cus in there language Hindu means CHOR.
    And now u guys keep saying garav se Kaho hum Hindu(CHOR) hai. lol
    Yes u guys r Hindu. hahahhahahhahahahahahaahhahahahha

  11. Sukhvinder singh says

    @kaycee u r making connection between sikhi & Hinduism cus u hear that there is names of ram,Lakshmi,Sita etc etc. I know there is there name but Sikh gurus newer said to Sikhs to worship ur ram,Lakshmi,Sita in baani guru g use word ‘ram’ for god. They also write to clear everything that “”ik ram dashrath ka beta, ik ram kun kun mein rehta”". They clear everything about everbody.

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