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Literature in the Singh Sabha movement (14)
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
BABA NAUDH SINGH, whose full title. "The Redemption of Subhagji through the Grace of Baba Naudh Singh," pronounces the homiletic character of the book at the start, was first published in 1921. Comprising a wide variety of elements ranging from romance to polemics, sermon and theology, it seeks to present the Sikh way and vision of life through incident, example and argument. In a manner, the author, Bhai Vir Singh, has only extended the form effected by him in his earlier romances, Sundan, Bijay Singh and Satvant Kaur.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
BANI PRAKASH or 5n Guru Banf Prakash is a dictionary of the Guru Granth Sahib compiled by Sodhi Teja Singh. According to the author, he started working on it in December 1928, and got it printed in 1932 at the Phulwari Press, Lahore. The original version of the dictionary, according to the author, was based on the Faridkot Tika of Guru Granth Sahib, but subsequently he incorporated into it a considerable amount of more material from further study of exegetical and lexical works in the field of Sikh learning.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
BIJAI SINGH, by Bhai Vir Singh, is a historical romance constructed around the heroic figure of Bijai Singh, a fictitious character, through whose spiritual integrity it endeavours to delineate a whole people, its inspiration and way of life. First published in 1899, Bijai Singh is the author`s second novel and, like its predecessor Sundari (q.v.), it is situated in the same 18th century period of suffering and trial for the Sikhs. Bijai Singh is in every sense an exemplary character. Born Ram Lal in a Hindu Khatri family of Lahore, he received the new name Bijai Singh as, moved by the gallant deeds of the Sikhs, he, along with his wife and son, receives the initiatory rites and joins the ranks of the Khalsa.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
BIR MRIGESH, full title SRI BIR MRIGESH GURBILAS DEV TARU, is a voluminous nineteenth century work by Bhai Sher Singh, a disciple of Baba Khuda Singh (1786-1861), who completed it in 1911. In bold Gurmukhi typography, the book runs to 1912 pages, divided into two parts comprising 847 and 1065 pages, respectively. It contains accounts, in ample detail, of the lives of Baba Sahib Singh Bedi, Baba Bhag Singh of Kuri, Baba Bir Singh of Naurangabad and Baba Khuda Singh. The author refers to these luminaries as guru and calls his book gurbilas (biography of the Gurus).
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
Ham Hindu Nahin, by Bhai Kahn Singh, lit. "We, i.e. Sikhs, are not Hindus," is a clear-cut declaration of Sikh identity registered by a Sikh scholar and intellectual towards the close of the nineteenth century. The statement constitutes the basic dictum of the book which appeared under this challenging title in 1898. In the signed introduction to the work, the author puts down HB as his initials. Decoded, the initials stand for Kahn Singh. The book was registered under this title in the Punjab Gazette on 30 June 1899 at number 447. The author's name, Kahn Singh, started appearing in the book from 1907. The book recalled the days of long-drawn polemic between Hindus and Sikhs.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
KHURSHUID KHALSA (Khurshid, lit, tlie sun rays of tlie sun) is a book in Urdu pertaining to the history of the Sikhs from the time of Guru Nanak published at Aftabi Hind Press in Lahore in 1885. The book caused a considerable amount of controversy in contemporary Sikhism. Already riven into two factions, the Amritsar and Lahore groups, the antagonism between the two one espousing the cause of Maharaja Duleep Singh, the deposed sovereign of the Punjab, and the other openly hostile to him sharpened. Members of the Kuka sect were the principal supporters of the Maharaja.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
MANMAT PRAHAR LARI (lit., a series to overcome heresy) comprises tracts written by Bhai Mohan Singh Vaid of Tarn Taran between 1903 and 1908, denouncing unSikh customs and rituals to which the Sikhs had succumbed. This had been one of the primary objectives of the Singh Sabha reform and a most forceful exponent of it was Giani Ditt Singh, a prolific writer and editor of the Khalsd Akhbdr. With his death in 1901, a vacuum occurred in the reformers` crusade against ignorance and superstition among the Sikh masses. Bhai Mohan Singh Vaid entered the arena in 1903 and attempted to fill this gap.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
RAHIT DARPAN, lit. a mirror or code of conduct, is one of the thirty-seven rahitndmds written by various authors and collected by Bhagvan Singh under the title Bar Bimal Bibekbdrdhi, popularly known as Bibekbdrdhi,. Rahit Darpan, written in Punjabi verse, is the work of Bhagvan Singh himself, which he completed on Phagun sudi 7, 1957 Bk/Fcbruary 1901.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
RANA SURAT SINGH, an epiclike poem by Bhai Vir Singh published in 1905. This poem of more than fourteen thousand lines is written in blank verse, tried for the first time in Punjabi. With all its protracted search and pang, it is ultimately a poem of complete spiritual certitude, of utter harmony and undifferentiation, of turiydpad, the final stage of realization. But despite this religious leitmotif, the work does not degenerate into a dry and didactic poem, but possesses intrinsic worth as a literary production of high aesthetic value. The backdrop of the story is the eighteenth century when the Sikh people were facing oppression and persecution.
Literature in the Singh Sabha movement
SATVANT KAUR, whose full title is Snmatf Satvant Kaur di Jivan Vithia, is a historical romance by Bhai Vir Singh. Its first part was published in 1900 and the second in 1927. In later editions, both parts were combined in a single volume. The plot has been set against the backdrop of the Afghan invasions of the Punjab in the eighteenth century. With Ahmad Shah Durrani`s fourth raid in 1756 is linked the story of the heroic Sikh girl, Satvant Kaur, who, having been abducted to Kabul, undergoes untold tribulation but remains stread fast in her devotion to her religious faith.

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