AMAR SHAHEED BABA DEEP SINGH JI
Shaheed Baba Deep Singh Ji was born on January 20, 1682, in the village of Pahuwind, district Amritsar. His father’s name was Bhai Bhagta Ji (bhaag singh) . At the age of 12, Baba Deep Singh Ji went with his parents to Anandpur Sahib to meet Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the tenth Sikh guru. They stayed at Sri Anandpur Sahib for several days, doing sevaa (service) with the Sangat. When his parents were ready to return to their village, Guru Gobind Singh Ji asked Baba Deep Singh Ji to stay with him. He humbly accepted Guru Ji’s command and began serving him.From Bhai Mani Singh Ji Baba Ji began learning reading and writing Gurmukhi and santhiyaa (exegesis) of Gurbaani. As well as Gurmukhi he learnt several other languages. At the age of 18, on the Vaisakhi of 1700, he received the blessing of Khande-di-pahul (Amrit) from the Guru-roop Panj Piyaare. As an Amritdhari Sikh, Baba Deep Singh Ji took an oath to serve in Akaal Purakh’s Fauj (the Almighty’s army) and that following the way of the Khalsa one is to always help the weak and needy, and to fight for truth and justice. Baba Deep Singh Ji soon became one of Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s most beloved Sikhs. Baba Deep Singh Ji gave his head for us, baba deep singh ji was great soldier as well as saint, his sword weighs 20kg(40lbs). Guru Gobind Singh Ji also taught him the art of horsemanship, hunting, arms training and the use of the bow (archery) and other weapons. Guru Gobind Singh Ji recited the entire Sri Guru Granth Sahib while Baba Deep Singh Ji and Bhai Mani Singh Ji wrote out the text and distributed it to Sikhs. After its completion, Baba Deep Singh Ji continued, for several years; to hand write four additional copies of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib.
These four copies were handed over to Akal Takht Sahib, Takht Patna Sahib, Takht Hazur Sahib and Takht Anandpur Sahib. Later he wrote another copy of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib in Arabic script and sent it to the Middle East.Baba Deep Singh Ji was a master of many languages including Gurmukhi, Sanskrit, Persian, Arabic and several other languages,
In 1706, Guru Gobind Singh Ji placed Baba Deep Singh Ji in charge at Sri Damdama Sahib, while Bhai Mani Singh Ji was made Head Granthi of Sri Harmander Sahib in Amritsar. After Guru Sahib left for Delhi, he took up the duty of preparing copies of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji and carried on the sewa blessed by Guru Gobind Singh Ji of managing this Sikh Centre. ‘Taksaal’ means a minting factory. Sri Damdama Sahib, had become a factory where Sikhs would come to mint and prepare their shastars (weapons), as well as mint their minds and enshrine Gurbaani within their hearts through learning the correct pronunciation and grammar of reading Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. As a result this centre of education and weaponry was known as ‘Damdami Taksaal’. Baba Deep Singh Ji spent many years at Sri Damdama Sahib preaching Sikh values and teachings and doing sevaa of the Sangat. He was always ready to serve those in need and to fight for justice.
In April 1757, Ahmed Shah Abdali, after his fourth invasion, was returning to Kabul from Delhi with precious booty and young men and women as captives. Singhs made a plan to retrieve the valuables and set the prisoners free. The jatha (squad) of Baba Deep Singh Ji was deployed near Kurkhetar (also called Kurukshetra). His squad freed large number of prisoners and lightened the burden of valuables of Abdali considerably. While departing from Lahore, Abdali appointed his son Taimur Shah, the Governor of Lahore and told him, “Try to finish the Sikhs”. In Accordance with his orders, Taimur Shah started demolishing Gurdwaré and filling the sarovars (pool tanks) with debris and alcohol. When Baba Deep Singh Ji came to know of this beadbi (violation of sanctity) and demolition of Sri Harmandar Sahib, he narrated it to the Sangat (congregation) of Takht Sri Damdama Sahib, and said, “Diwali will be celebrated at Amritsar this year.” Five hundred Singhs came forward to go with him. Baba jee leaves for Amritsar. Although Baba Deep Singh Ji was 75 years old, he still had the strength of a young warrior. He gathered a large group of Sikhs and advanced towards Sri Harmandar Sahib. By the time they reached the Taran Taaran, about ten miles from Amritsar, the number of Singhs had risen to about 5,000. At this time, Baba Ji drew a line on the ground with his Khanda (double-edged sword), and asked only those who were willing to fight and die to cross the line. Those
willing to die for the Guru and give up their attachment for their homes and families crossed the line eagerly. Baba Deep Singh Ji then recited the shabad:
ਜਉ ਤਉ ਪ੍ਰੇਮ ਖੇਲਣ ਕਾ ਚਾਉ ॥ ਸਿਰੁ ਧਰਿ ਤਲੀ ਗਲੀ ਮੇਰੀ ਆਉ ॥
ਇਤੁ ਮਾਰਗਿ ਪੈਰੁ ਧਰੀਜੈ ॥ ਸਿਰੁ ਦੀਜੈ ਕਾਣਿ ਨ ਕੀਜੈ ॥20॥
“Those who wish to play the game of love (follow the Guru’s path), come to me with your head in your palm. If you wish your feet to travel this path,
don’t delay in accepting to give your head.” (Ang 1412, SGGS)
Both the armies clashed near Gohalwarh on the 11th November, 1757. Fighting bravely, the Singhs pushed the army back and reached village Chabba where Attal Khan came forward and fierce battle ensued during which Attal Khan inflicted a blow on Baba Deep Singh Ji
severing his head from his body.
Baba Deep Singh, more than 75 years of age at that time, started to lose his footing under the impact of the blow, when a Sikh reminded him, “Baba ji, you had resolved (Ardaasa soddhyaa see) to reach the Parkarma of Sri Darbar Sahib.” On hearing this, a divine energy suddenly took over,and Baba ji placed his head on the palm of one hand and with the other hand moved his 20kg Khanda (double-edged sword) with such ferocity and strength that enemy soldiers started running away in panic. Thus, Baba Deep Singh made his way to the Parkarma of Sri Harmandar Sahib where, due to the severe injury, attained martyrdom.
Even today, his life serves as an example for each one of us on how to live as a Sant Sipahi (Saint-Soldier).
He is also known as Anokhe Amar Shaheed Baba Deep Singh Ji. Only someone with spiritual strength could accomplish such a task.
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