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Summary of Question:Vaisakhi Nagar Kirtan
Category:Sikh Practices
Date Posted:Friday, 3/16/2001 2:11 AM MDT

I am doing a presentation about vaisakhi and I was wondering if you could provide me with information about the Nagar Kirtan. What is its relevence, history and meaning? Thank -you

I would appreciate it if you could write to me as soon as possible so I can reherse this presentaion.
Nagar Kirtan is simple call and answer style singing of Gurbani or Jai Kara. The community or the Panth created it. It was done in the villages as people would walk with a procession of the Guru through the town. With drums and shakers and simple percussion instruments, people walk together as a leader calls and sings a line of Gurbani and the people respond by repeating the line together in response.

"Dhan Dhan Siri Guru Granth Sahib-ji" Dhan Dhan Siri Guru Granth Sahiba ji...aapay Guru chelaaa.....aapay guru chelaa....Nanak Nirbhou nirankaar....Nanak Nirbhou nirankar...etc. Or "Wahe Guru Wahe Guru Wahe Guru Wahe Guru....repeat.

It is customarily done on Baiskahi and 'Guru Gaddi Day' and also done on Guru's holidays(Gurupurabs). We go into the streets to bless ourselves singing of God' truth and carrying our scriptures. This was first done by Guru Arjan Dev when he completed the first rendition of the Adi Granth and carried it in a procession to the Golden Temple. Guru Gaddi Day is the day that we celebrate the enthronement of Siri Guru Granth Sahib as the Guru and successor to Guru Gobind Singh. Baisakhi is when we celebrate the formation of the "Khalsa" or the elevation of human's into God conscious way of living.

Nagar Kirtan can be done as the wedding party walks from the home to the Gurdwara. It is done every day at the Golden Temple in Amritsar as the Guru comes into the Gurdwara in the Amrit Vela and goes back at night to it's resting place in the Akal Takhat. It is always a celebration to do Nagar Kirtan. It can even be done at a passing....or death.

Nagar Kirtan is a unifying affirmation of the presence of our unity as people of God consciousness. It is a walking meditation, devotion and unifying experience of a group of people.

God bless you, SKKK

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