Saturday, January 09, 2010

Bhai Jeevan Singh Jee...


Bhai Jeevan Singh jee is one the Panth's jewels who is the image of humility and saintliness. Bhai Sahib's life has been devoted to the sevaa of the Panth and humanity. He has served as the Head Granthi at Takhat Sri Patna Sahib and has done keertan sevaa with the Akhand Kirtani Jatha for about 40 years. Since 1977 Bhai Sahib has toured different countries to spread Gurmat (the Guru's teachings) and has inspired countless to become the Sikhs of the Guru through his exemplary character and behaviour. For the last couple of years, with old age and ill-health, Bhai Sahib has not been able travel and is very frail. Sadly, I have never had the opportunity to have Sangat with Bhai Sahib jee, however Guru jee blessed me with Bhai Sahib's darshan last February in India at their home in Amritsar. Due to Bhai Sahib's health at the time he was unable to move around or talk. Waheguru. May Guru jee keep such Gursikhs in Chardi Kalaa and may we all become inspired to improve our own jeevan (spiritual life) with Guru Sahib's kirpaa.


Bhai Sahib Randheer Singh jee doing keertan alongside Bhai Jeevan Singh jee in 1953 at Model Town, Ludhiana.


SOME INSPIRATIONAL ACCOUNTS FROM
BHAI JEEVAN SINGH JEE'S LIFE

(Collected from Gursikhs and from the Internet)

Meetings with Giani Baba Kartar Singh Jee (Bhindran Wale)
Bhai Jeevan Singh jee used to be invited by Giani Baba Kartar Singh jee Bhindran Wale to do Keertan at Mehtaa. It has been said that Baba jee would wait at the train station for Bhai Sahib and the Akhand Kirtani Jatha Singhs to come. When Bhai Sahib jee used to get off the train Baba jee would rush to the train to greet Bhai Sahib. When they would meet they would embrace one another with so much pyaar. Baba jee held Bhai Sahib jee in great regard. Baba jee himself would serve Bhai Jeevan Singh jee langar with his own hands. Whenever Bhai Jeevan Singh jee would enter the Diwaan where Baba Kartar Singh jee would be doing Kathaa, Baba jee would stop the Kathaa and say request Gurmukh pyaare Bhai Jeevan Singh jee to do keertan for the Sangat.


Bhai Sahib and Amrit-Velaa
There was a young Singh in England who had taken Amrit for about a year. His Amrit-velaa (habit to wake up early) started getting slack. He used to do Amrit-velaa with Gursikhs regularly at a Gursikh's house but he gradually stopped attending daily. One day, early in the morning at Amrit-velaa, the Singh was asleep and hadn't woken up for Amrit-velaa. His father was at work on the night shift and his mother was up doing her paath when suddenly the phone rang. Bhai Jeevan Singh jee said, "Is bhaji there?" The Aunty jee replied, "No, he is working on a night shift." Bhai Sahib said, "No, I am not talking about Pita jee. Is Bhaji there." (Bhai Sahib always makes himself out to be the youngest, such is his humility). The Aunty jee rushed up to wake up the young Singh and tell him to answer the phone. The Singh shared the Guru's Fateh over the phone with Bhai Sahib and then Bhai Sahib said, "Bhai ji, you haven't done kirpaa (mercy) on me today, it is Amrit-vela, and you forgot to wake me." There was a silence. The Singh felt so embarrassed for missing Amrit-vela. The Aunty jee and son looked at one another wondering how Bhai Sahib living in Canada knew that he had missed Amritvela that day.


Accepting Akaal Purakh's Will
Bhai Sahib visited a family in England in the late 1980s and stayed at the house for Akhand Paath sevaa. Bhai Sahib listened the Paath for many hours and corrected the Paathis (readers) when they made a grammatical or pronunciation error. Seven or eight years later Bhai Sahib came back to England and was invited to the same family. Several years earlier the Singh whose house it was had passed away. When Bhai Sahib jee asked the lady about her husband she became emotional and as soon as this happened Bhai Sahib jee went upstairs in Sri Guru Granth Sahib jee's room and stayed there. He never came down and after a good 4-5 hours the bibi asked her daughter to ask Bhai Sahib jee to come down. The girl went upstairs and found Bhai Sahib jee sitting in smaadhee (meditative pose). She asked them to come downstairs, to which Bhai Sahib replied that she should tell her mum that he will only come downstairs after her mum accepts the Bhaana (Will) of Akaal Purakh and not to become emotional about her husband. The Bibi agreed and Bhai Sahib jee came down and later did keertan at the house.


Bumping into a Mona
One evening, the Gursikhs had just finished doing kirtan at Gurdwara Singh Sabha, Slough (England). A Singh phoned and said that had booked kirtan in Hounslow, and that the Gursikhs should come straight away. Bhai Jeevan Singh jee said, "Lets go quickly, we should always be on time". As Bhai Jeevan Singh jee, his singhni (wife), and two other Singhs walked downstairs into the shoes section, a mona (man with hair cut) was walking in to the Gurdwara. Accidentally, he bumped into Bhai sahib. He said "sorry," and looked into Bhai sahib's face. Those who know Bhai sahib know how enigmatic his smile is, and how his face always shines. Bhai sahib said to him, "I came here especially to see you, I have something for you." Bhai sahib then took off his dastaar (turban) and handed it to the youth. The mona youth could not believe his eyes; Bhai sahib said these words to him with so much honesty, pyaar (lovingness) and humility that from that day on the boy kept his kesh and came into Sikhi.


Bhai Sahib at World Sikh Samellen
In 1995 Professor Manjit Singh, the then Jathedaar of Sri Akaal Takhat Sahib called a World Sikh Samellan (conference). Every Gurdwara, Sikh organization and jatha (group) from around the world was invited and many days were spent discussing Panthic (Sikh national) issues affecting Sikhs. Thousands of Sikhs gathered, including all the big leaders and personalities within the Panth. Many people such as political leaders were centred on themselves and wanted special treatment, but everyone was treated equally. No dignitary received special attention. However for some reason the Panj Jathedars of the five Takhats sat on a sofa in the complex where this was happening. As the A-Z of Sikh leadership sat in the sangat on the floor, a simple Gursikh walked into the complex building. He walked in humbly, did matha tekh, and went to sit in the sangat. However straight away, the Jathedaars got up and ran over to him, and said to him, he must sit on the sofa. Totally embarrassed he refused. But they brought him over and sat him on the sofa. He sat uncomfortably because he was not one for that kind of attention. That Gursikh was Bhai Jeevan Singh jee. It goes to show how highly Bhai sahib, his jeevan, his seva, and his nimarta is respected in the Panth, that only he was singled out for such attention. It is the virtues of Guru, such pure humility, that pulls at peoples hearts.


Great humility
A Muslim man passed by Bhai Sahib somewhere and he stopped and looked at Bhai Sahib's face. The man goes up to Bhai Jeevan Singh jee and says "I can see 'Allah Da Noor' (the Light of God) in you". Bhai Sahib folded his hands and humbly said, "O great man! Can you please give me your wonderful eyes with which you see such wonderful things." Another time, there was Sangat sitting in Canada and someone approached Bhai Sahib with a question in front of others. He said, "Bhai Sahib, you tell us - as you have met God." Bhai Sahib replied with a humble and astonished "Achaa? (O really?)" and walked away.



Despite ill-health
Bhai Jeevan Singh jee now lives 5-10 minutes away from Sri Darbar Sahib in Amritsar. Bhai Sahib would occasionally go and do keertan seva there whenever it was his turn/duty. One day his wife locked the door of his room to make sure he didn't go to do keertan seva that day because Bhai Sahib was very sick and she knew that Bhai Sahib would still want to go to Sri Darbaar Sahib. When his wife turned on the television she saw Bhai Sahib doing keertan (I think it was Asa Di Vaar keertan). She brought someone else to the television and showed them and they said it's probably a recording. Still in doubt they opened the locked room and went in and found that the window was wide open and Bhai Jeevan Singh jee no where to be found. He had jumped out of the window somehow and went to do keertan seva even though he was really sick. This was the dedication of a beloved Gursikh for his Guru.


Video of Bhai Jeevan Singh Jee doing Keertan at Bay Area (California) Local Rainsbaee August 1989:


Dhan Guru, Dhan Guru Ke Pyaare.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

an amazing gursikh!!!!

Anonymous said...

crn swD ky Doie Doie pIau ]

charan saadhh kae dhhoe dhhoe peeo ||

Wash the feet of the Holy, and drink in this water.



Arip swD kau Apnw jIau ]

arap saadhh ko apanaa jeeo ||

Dedicate your soul to the Holy.



swD kI DUir krhu iesnwnu ]

saadhh kee dhhoor karahu eisanaan ||

Take your cleansing bath in the dust of the feet of the Holy.



swD aUpir jweIAY kurbwnu ]

saadhh oopar jaaeeai kurabaan ||

To the Holy, make your life a sacrifice.



swD syvw vfBwgI pweIAY ]

saadhh saevaa vaddabhaagee paaeeai ||

Service to the Holy is obtained by great good fortune.



swDsMig hir kIrqnu gweIAY ]

saadhhasa(n)g har keerathan gaaeeai ||

In the Saadh Sangat, the Company of the Holy, the Kirtan of the Lord's Praise is sung.



Aink ibGn qy swDU rwKY ]

anik bighan thae saadhhoo raakhai ||

From all sorts of dangers, the Saint saves us.



hir gun gwie AMimRq rsu cwKY ]

har gun gaae a(n)mrith ras chaakhai ||

Singing the Glorious Praises of the Lord, we taste the ambrosial essence.



Et ghI sMqh dir AwieAw ]

outt gehee sa(n)theh dhar aaeiaa ||

Seeking the Protection of the Saints, we have come to their door.



srb sUK nwnk iqh pwieAw ]6]

sarab sookh naanak thih paaeiaa ||6||

All comforts, O Nanak, are so obtained. ||6||

Anonymous said...

Vaheguroo Jee dass is going india could you give dass a cotact number or maybe an adresss as i would like to the bhai sahibs darshan whilst i am staying in harmander sahib.

Anonymous said...

i remember when bhai sahib ji stayed in california for a few years. an uncle ji once told me that near the gurdwara where bhai sahib use to go that there was a broken phone booth. the phone worked without any money. at amrit vela bhai sahib would go to it and start waking up sang at around the world. my father himself told me the story of how he would get a call at amritvela and all bhai sahib would say is WAHEGURU.

Parmvir Singh Boparai said...

I love Bhai Sahib

Anonymous said...

Forever