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Political Philosophy (14)
Political Philosophy
BUNGA: A place of residence for the Sikhs or the place for rest for the pilgrims. There were at least 69 Bungas at Amritsar in the nineteenth century, some of them are still in existence. Another term for the resting hostel for the Sikh pilgrims is Saran. At Darbar Sahib, Amritsar Guru Ram Das Saran has been built for the pilgrims. Another Saran at Darbar Sahib is named Guru Nanak Niwas. Lately, a paid hostel named Aka/ Rest House, too, has been built. There are Sarans attached to almost all of the major Gurdwaras.
Political Philosophy
DARBAR, a Perisan word meaning "a house, dwelling; court, area; court or levee of a prince; audience chamber," is commonly used in Punjabi to signify a royal, princely or any high ranking officer`s court (as distinguished from courts of justice) where dignitaries granted audience to the common people, listened to their grievances, or deliberated with their darbaris (courtiers) on matters of public interest. In Sikhism the term came to have extended meaning as Guru Nanak and his holy successors introduced terms such as sacha patisahu, True Emperor (GG, 17, 18, 463 etal.), siri saha patisahu, at the head of kings and emperors (GG, 1426) for God Almighty.
Political Philosophy
DAROGA, from Persian daroghah, lit. "head man of an office, prefect of a town or village, overseer, or superintendent of any department," is a term usually applied to a police officer in charge of a thana (police station) exercising jurisdication over a police circle. The title, equivalent of than adaror thanedar in the Punjab, is still used in some other Indian states to designate an inspector or subinspector of police in charge of a police station or, in official terminology, a station house officer, S.H.O. for short. During the medieval period, as even now, daroga, as a government official responsible for maintaining law and order in the countryside, enjoyed wide powers of detention and arrest. His counterpart, in larger towns, or superior was kotwal.
Political Philosophy
LAHORE DARBAR, i.e. the Sikh Court at Lahore, denoted the government of Maharaja Ranjit Singh and his successors (1799-1849). However, the Persian chroniclers refer to this government as Sarkar Khalsaji, and the term "Lahore Darbar" is not used even in British records until about the death of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The composition of the Lahore Darbar was highly diversified. In the direction of all State affairs, political, foreign and domestic, it was completely subservient to the will of the Maharaja.
Political Philosophy
MORCHA, in Persian murchah or murchal meaning entrenchments, fortification or battlefront, has, apart from its usage in military strategy, entered Indian political vocabulary via the Gurdwara Reform or Akali movement of the early 1920`s. In that prolonged agitation for the liberation of Sikh historical shrines from the control of a corrupt priestly order, the Akalis, as the reformers were then known, came into clash with the British rulers and mounted peaceful resistance fronts to assert their rights. These assuming the form of mass mobilization, meetings and marches to force the matter at issue, were styled morchds.
Political Philosophy
PANTH, from Sanskrit patha, pathin, or pantham, means literally a way, passage or path and, figuratively, away of life, religious creed or cult. In Sikh terminology, the word panth stands for the Sikh faith as well as for the Sikh people as a whole. It represents the invisible mystic body comprising all those who profess Sikhism as their faith and encompassing lesser bodies, religious as well as political, claiming to represent the whole of the Sikh population or any section of it.
Political Philosophy
RAJ KAREGA KHALSA, lit. "the Khalsa shall rule," a phrase expressive of the will of the Sikh people to sovereignty, is part of the anthem which follows the litany or ardas recited at the end of every religious service of the Sikhs. While the ardas is said by an officiant or any Sikh leading the sangat standing and facing Guru Granth Sahib, the anthem is recited aloud in unison by everyone present, with responses from the assembly. Rendered into English the anthem comprising dohards or couplets reads: 1. Verily by the order of God the Immortal was the Panth promulgated. It is incumbent upon all the Sikhs to regard the Granth as their Guru. 2. Regard the Granth as the Guru, the manifest body of the Gurus.
Political Philosophy
RANJIT NAGARA, lit. the drum of victory in battlefield, was the name given the kettledrum installed by Guru Gobind Singh at Anandpur in 1684. Nagdrd, Punjabi for the Persian naqqdrah meaning a kettledrum, was a symbol of royalty. As well as fulfilling his spiritual office, Guru Gobind Singh had, like his grandfather. Guru Hargobind, adopted the emblems of worldly dignity. He wore an aigrette and arms, sat under canopy and went out riding in state. Adding another sign of authority, in 1684, his diwdn, Nand Chand, had a kettledrum installed at his bidding.
Political Philosophy
SARBATT KHALSA (sarbatt from Sanskrit sarva/ sarvatas meaning the whole or entire) is a term with a dual connotation. It is a concept as well as an institution. In the conceptual sense, KhaJsa is the extension of sarig"at, holycongregation, an institution which has been eulogized in the Sikh Scripture as symbolizing God`s Own presence (GG.460,1314, B35). Sarbatt Khalsa in this sense is a mystic entity representing the "integrated conscience" of the entire Sikh people imbued with the all pervasive spirit of the Divine. Guru Gobind Singh transformed sahgat into Khalsa sub serving God`s will or pleasure.
Political Philosophy
SIKH ARMY PANCHAYATS, or regimental committees, were a singularly characteristic phenomenon of the post Ranjit Singh period of Sikh rule in the Punjab. Based on the Sikh principle of equality as well as of the supremacy of sangat or the sarbatt khalsa, they wielded great power during 1841-45. Like the rise of Soviets on the eve of the Russian revolution of 1917, panchayats in the Sikh army appeared spontaneously at a time of instability and declining administrative standards. The struggle of power between Mai, or dowager, Chand Kaur and Prince Sher Singh after the death of Maharaja Kharak Singh and his son, Nau Nihal Singh, ended in victory for the Prince, but at the expense of military discipline.

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World Gurudwaras

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The etymology of the term 'gurdwara' is from the words 'Gur (ਗੁਰ)' (a reference to the Sikh Gurus) and 'Dwara (ਦੁਆਰਾ)' (gateway in Gurmukhi), together meaning 'the gateway through which the Guru could be reached'. Thereafter, all Sikh places of worship came to be known as gurdwaras.

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