(Amrit Pal Singh ‘Amrit’)
Pandit Hardyal Ji is among those personalities, who are portrayed in a wrong way by some modern Sikh writers. He was the person, who got the chance to have the ‘Darshan’ of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, since Guru Ji was just one day old.
According to the facts gotten from the Guru history books, Pandit Hardyal Ji was the first person, who recognized the Godly light of Guru Nanak Dev Ji. Pandit Hardyal Ji had not had the ‘Darshan’ of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, when he announced that the newborn was a superhuman infant. Pandit Ji believed that Vishnu or Shiva had incarnated into this world in the form of Guru Ji. Pandit Ji told that there would be holy parasol over the head of newborn and this Guru would grant people remission of sins. Pandit Ji predicted that the infant would gain victory.
It is understandable that Pandit Ji strongly desired to see such a holy infant. He asked Mehta Kalu Ji, the father of Guru Ji, to get the ‘Darshan’ of the infant Guru. Kalu Ji asked Bibi Daultaan, the midwife, to bring the infant out of the room. When Bibi Daultaan went to get the infant, Mother Tripta Ji, the mother of Guru Ji, refused to give the infant. She said it would not be good for infant’s health, if he goes outside.
Guru had incarnated into the world, Pandit Ji knew it, and even then, Pandit Ji would go home without having his ‘Darshan’; it was not possible in any way. He made requests to Kalu Ji again and again to have the ‘Darshan’ of Guru Ji.
At last, Pandit Hardyal Ji’s desired was fulfilled. It was the first day of Guru Ji’s life in this world. The infant Guru was brought before the lover, Pandit Hardyal Ji. When Pandit Ji saw Guru Ji, he stood up. He was so happy. His heart was full of love. Indicating clearly that the newborn is the ‘Jagat-Guru’, Pandit Hardyal Ji bowed his head before the Guru Ji.
Pandit Ji had the ‘Darshan’ of infant Guru Ji to his satisfaction. The happiness of Pandit Ji was so obvious. Although in his later life, he had the ‘Darshan’ of the savior, the world was waiting for. Seeing the infant’s pink feet, reddish nails, bow-like eyebrows, round sweet cheeks, Pandit Ji said, “O Kalu! Your son is so beautiful.”
When Pandit Ji had the ‘Darshan’ of the infant, it was sent to its mother again. Mehta Kalu Ji requested Pandit Hardyal Ji to name the Guru Ji. As per rituals, after 13 days, Pandit Ji gave the name to the infant Guru Ji. Then name given by Pandit Ji was ‘Nanak’.
Mehta Kalu Ji was confused with this name. He said to Pandit Ji, “O Brahman! Do not give this name. It is common name in both of Hindus and Muslims. Give such a name, which is familiar within Hindus.”
Pandit Hardyal replied, “Your son is a big incarnation. Ram and Krishna were the incarnations; but only Hindus followed them, Muslims did not. This infant will be followed by both of Hindus and Muslims. His feet are like ship. Whosoever touches his feet, will get the salvation. This infant will give the ‘Name’ of the God to the people. The land, mountains, and the sea will give way to him. Hindus and Muslims will recite his name. O Kalu! Do no think that I am lying. It will happen.”
The father Kalu Ji was very happy listening this.
While going back to his home, Pandit Ji was considering in his mind. He was saddened thinking that he would not be able to see the glory of Guru, because he was getting older. Pandit Ji was thinking that many people will be blessed in the company of the Guru, but he was not sure if he would be there to see all this.
For a worshiper, prayer is the only hope. Pandit Hardyal Ji started to pray in his mind that he should live till the Guru starts to give his sermon to the world. Pandit Hardyal Ji wanted to see the ‘Leela’ (amusement) of Guru Ji. Guru always fulfills the desire of such person. Pandit Ji’s desire was also fulfilled.
When Guru Ji attained the required age, Mehta Kaalu Ji requested Pandit Hardyal Ji to perform ‘Janeyoo’ ceremony. ‘Janeyoo’ is a thread, which is put by so-called high-caste Hindus. Pandit Ji fixed the day for the ceremony. Required articles were brought there, as per Pandit Ji’s instructions. Mehta Kaalu Ji collected required grains to prepare food for the guests. A goat was brought there to cook the meat. The relatives and other known persons were invited to take part in the ceremony.
On the fixed day, invited Brahmans and Khatris reached to Mehta Kaalu Ji’s house. On the fixed time, Guru Ji was called there in the gathering, so that the ceremony could be performed. Guru Ji came there and sat in this gathering of Brahmans and Khatris.
Pandit Hardyal Ji started to perform his duty as per rituals. After completing necessary rituals, as soon as Pandit Ji tried to put the ‘Janeyoo’ to Guru Ji, Guru Ji said, “O Brahman! Why are you putting this ‘Janeyoo’ to me? What do we get after wearing this thread? O brilliant Brahman! Tell me what is harm not wearing this ‘Janeyoo’?”
Pandit Hardyal Ji already knew that Guru Nanak Dev Ji came into this world to save the humanity. It was a desire since long in the heart of Pandit Ji to get the sermon from the Guru Ji. When Guru Ji asked these questions, this desire rose again in the heart of Pandit Ji. Pandit Ji had known that the time was come, he was waiting for since long period.
Pandit Ji, who knew the greatness of Guru Ji, said, “Putting the ‘Janeyoo’ is the ‘Dharma’ of Brahmans and Khatris. The ‘Dharma’ of Brahmans and Khatris cannot be kept without it.”
Guru Ji replied, “The ‘Dharma’ of Brahmans and Khatris can be kept by wearing the ‘Janeyoo’ or it can be kept by doing good deeds? Those Brahmans and Khatris, who remains indulged in misdeeds, faces the tortures by the messengers of the god of death. Then, tell me what is the use of wearing the ‘Janeyoo’?”
All the Brahmans present there knew that what Guru Ji was saying was perfectly true. All of them remained silent. They were aware that only wearing the ‘Janeyoo’ couldn’t give the salvation. Adi Shankraachaarya, who was a Brahman himself, criticized the ‘Janeyoo’ hundred years ago. The ‘Sanyasis’ had discarded the ‘Janeyoo’ hundred years ago. Everyone will have to render the account of his deeds/misdeeds. The evildoer, even if he wears ‘Janeyoo’, will be punished; and the decent will be rewarded, even if he does not wear ‘Janeyoo’.
Nevertheless, Purohit Hardyal Ji wanted more nectar of Guru’s words. So, he asked, “Which is the ‘Janeyoo’, which does not carry us to hell? Everyone here is eager to listen all this from you. Please give us this knowledge.”
Guru Ji’s reply is written in this ‘Saloka’ of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji :
Dya Kapaah Santokh Soot Jat Gandhhi Sat Vat. Eh Janeyoo Jeey Ka, Hayee Taan Paanden Ghat. Na Eh Tutai, Na Mal Lagai, Na Eh Jalai Na Jaaye. Dhann Su Maanas Naanakaa, Jo Gal Chale Paaye.
“Make compassion the cotton, contentment the thread, modesty the knot, and truth the twist. This is the sacred thread of the soul; if you have it, then go ahead and put it on me. It does not break, it cannot be soiled by filth, and it cannot be burnt, or lost. Blessed are those mortal beings, O Nanak, who wear such a thread around their necks.” (Page 471, Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji).
(For more details and explaination, read the Punjabi article: – http://www.amritworld.com/pbi/commentary/bhaagaan_waale/hardyal.pdf).
Purohit Hardyal Ji thought that his prediction was proven true now without any doubt. Only a few persons can understand the glory of Guru Ji. Most of the people are unaware. Purohit Ji thought that he was very lucky that Guru Ji was his host.
Thus, Pandit Hardyal Ji was enlighten by Guru Nanak Dev Ji. Pandit Ji was so happy. His wish was fulfilled.
There is another famous ‘Saakhi’ of Guru Nanak Dev Ji. Mehta Kaalu Ji gave 20 rupes to Guru Ji and sent him to a city, named ‘Chooharh-kaana’, to purchase profitable articles, so that Guru Ji could sell them in his village. Guru Ji spent all this money to purchase food items for hungry saints, who were sitting in the forest. Guru Ji returned to his village empty handed.
When Mehta Kaalu Ji heard that Guru Ji spent money on saints, he was angered. The history books tell us that Mehta Ji even slapped Guru Ji.
Even Pandit Hardyal Ji had to listen the hot words of Mehta Kaalu Ji. Mehta Ji said sarcastically to Pandit Ji, “This is the holy parasol you put over the head of my son.”
Mehta Kaalu Ji continued to say, “Your astrology was wrong. The ‘Janam Kundli’ made by you was fake one. You lied to us. To get the money from me, you said that Hindus and Muslims would follow him. Today, he squandered money on saint and returned home empty handed.”
This was not the only incident, when Mehta Kaalu Ji made any complaint to Pandit Hardyal Ji. When Guru Ji did not show his interest in agriculter, Mehta Ji especially went to house of Pandit Ji and started to complain.
Dishearten Mehta Kaalu Ji said to Pandit Hardyal Ji, “Either your Vedas and Puranas are wrong, or you are not able to understand them. You predicted that there would be the holy parasol over the head of my son, but he is rather wasting the money already available. Thus, your predictions are proved wrong.”
Pandit Ji replied, “Listen Kaalu! You are totally mistaken. You are always against your son. I have tried to make you understand that your son has come into this world to save the people of this world. He is the person, he preached to me. He will save many people. He seems to me like Vishnu. He is the sea of merits.”
Mehta Ji did not reply, but his anger was not calmed down. He returned to his house silently.
As the ‘Kul-Purohit’, Pandit Hardyal Ji got the opportunity to attend the marriage of Guru Nanak Dev Ji. According to rituals, it was Pandit Hardyal Ji, who recited the ‘Gotraachaar’ for the bridegroom’s side on this historic occasion.
After his marriage, Guru Nanak Dev Ji called Pandit Ji, and said, “Ask for anything, you want to get from me”.
How many people are there, who are invited by the ‘Daata’ (holy donor) himself, so that they could get their desires fulfilled? The treasure of Guru’s grace was now open for Pandit Ji. When the holy donor is ready to give everything, there should not be any hesitation in the mind of seeker. When the holy donor is ready to give everything, a wise person like Pandit Hardyal Ji cannot think to get worthless thing.
Pandit Ji did not ask for gold. He did not ask for silver. The intelligent Pandit Ji said to Guru Ji, “You are the donor to the poor. You let me see as much your glory, as you wanted to. You are the creator of this universe. You are the God. You are the savior. You give the happiness to your devotees. Since you gave me the true ‘Janeyoo’, my mind does not wander here and there. My body is too old. There is no other desire in my mind. Please give me the salvation now.”
When Guru Ji heard these humble words by Pandit Hardyal Ji, he said smilingly, “O brilliant Brahman! Your wisdom is admirable. You have destroyed your ego.”
Pandit Ji was the person, who had destroyed his ego. He was on the path to the God.
Guru Ji said, “O wise! You will get the salvation. You will live in the Sachkhand” (the heaven/salvation).
Guru Ji gave him the money of the Name of the God as well as the worldly money. Pandit Ji got the true knowledge. As a true devotee of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, Pandit Hardyal Ji got the priceless pleasure.
Sources: ‘Sri Gur Nanak Prakash’, ‘Janamsakhi Bhai Bala’, ‘Twareekh Guru Khalsa’, ‘Brahman Sikh Itihas’.