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Nasihat-nama (Tanakha-nama) - Bhai Nand Lal Goya


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I think it is entirely appropriate to share one of the earliest rehit-namas (1718-18) on this divine occassion of Vasakhi - particularly with my Khalsa brethren and those on the journey to attain Khande de Pahul.

To give us all some inspiration from the rules that guided Dashmesh Pita's Khalsa.

Tankhah Naama

Code of Discipline

Questions: Bhai Nand Lal Jee

Responses: Guru Gobind Singh Jee


Nand Lal queried, “Guru Jee, enlighten me,

Which deed is ethical and which is not becoming.(1)


Nand Lal, listen to the premise, the Sikh conduct deems this,

Without the celestial name, ablution and benevolence, a Sikh should

not savour the food.(2)


One who does not participate in the true congregation early in the


Will be adjudged as deserving a (religious) retribution.(3)

The one who participates in the true-congregation half-heartedly

Will find shelter nowhere.(4)

While listening to the celestial glories, (one who) starts idle-talks,

Says Gobind Singh, goes to the hell.(5)

Coming across a poor-man, if he does not entertain him,

He obtains the fundamental punishment.(6)

One who tattles without the knowledge of the celestial word,

Benefits by nothing at all.(7)

If he does not pay his obeisance,

He will attain not access to the Supreme Being.(8)


One who distributes graced-pudding with avarice in his heart.

More to some and scanty to others, he, for ever, remains in affliction.(9)


Listen to the procedure of preparing consecrated pudding.

Take three components in equal quantity.(10)

After brooming, mud-plastering the floor,

And using the scrubber, wash all the utensils.(11)

Then take the bath and come forward all clean,

And, except Vaheguru, the Almighty, utter nothing else.(12)

Take a pitcherful of fresh water,

Then, Gobind Singh says, he will be physically fit.(13)

After preparing it, place it on a stool,

With holy hymns flowing in all the four directions.(14)


One who bows his head to a Turk (enemy) and surrenders his sword at

his feet,

Gobind Singh says, “Listen Lal Jee, he runs into the cycle of life and



One who never goes to the divine congregation,

And distributes sacred pudding withtout proper conduct.(16)

One who wears red (shining clothes) and takes snuff,

Gobind Singh says, he will be punished by the Yama of death.(17)

When sisters and mothers come to the congregation,

One who casts an evil eye at their row,(18)

And being a Sikh, if he renders wrath,

(He) loses the respect which a daughter could endow.(19)

One who plunders the daughter or the sister,

Says Gobind Singh, he is pushed towards the devil.(20)

Being a Sikh if one goes around without a sword,

His soul faces the transmigration.(21)

If he swindles the effects of the guest,

All his prayer and worship bear no fruit.(22)


One should comb the hair and put around the turban twice a day,

Should clean the teeth and, Lal Jee, this way one will never suffer.(23)


One who does not spare tithe for the Guru and revels in fabrications,

Lal Jee, Gobind Singh says, should not be trusted.(24)


If he does not take bath in cold water,

And without reading Jap, takes his food,(25)

Without saying Rehras, passes the evening,

Without reciting Keertan (Sohila) goes to sleep,(26)

Through back-biting if he gets his way through,

Cursed is his birth if he forgets the righteousness.(27)

One who stands not by his words,

Says Gobind Singh, he is honoured nowhere.(28)

One who eats meat taken from Turks,

One who utters any words except the Guru’s Shabad,(29)

Puts heart to hear the Triya Raga,

Listen, Lal Jee, he heads for the domain of death.(30)


Without supplication one who commences a task,

Prior to offering, puts something in the mouth.(31)

Abandoned belongings, one who takes away,

And takes an other’s wife to the bed,(32)

One who does not serve an approaching guest,

He won’t be honoured in the divine court.(33)

If he does not listen to the explications and singing of hymns,

And abuses a saintly Sikh,(34)

By back-biting and gambling, if he gains,

He suffers greatly through the death.(35)

If he not listen to the criticism of Guru’s,

Honour him by offering a sword.(36)


One who keeps not the charitable cashbox and indulges in deceitful


Says Gobind Singh, Lal Jee, he suffers through thousands of hells.(37)


Without worshipping Waheguru, one who eats,

The Sikh who pays visit to a prostitute,(38)

Who revels with an other’s wife,

Says Gobind Singh, such a Sikh is not regarded.(39)

One who is cunning and impostor for the Guru,

He should be considered severely punishable.(40)

Abandoning the Guru, one who goes to beg others,

And sleeps at night without anything on,(41)

Unclothed one who revels in sex,

And all naked cleans his teeth,(42)


One who goes around naked or eats bare headed,

Or gives out sacred pudding in a naked state is adjudged as a big



Khalsa is the one, who renounces calumny,

Khalsa is the one who volunteers to contend in the first rank.(44)

Khalsa is the one who annuls the five vices.

Khalsa is the one who burns the (effect of) the (previous) actions.(45)

Khalsa is the one who relinquishes the ego.

Khalsa is the one who keeps away from another’s wife.(46)

Khalsa is the one who does not imitate the others’ viewpoint.

Khalsa is the one who is infused with the divine name.(47)

Khalsa is the one who puts his heart into Gurbani.

Khalsa is the one who can eat the steel.(48)


Regarding the creation as that of the Creator, one should not exploit the


If creation is put in agony, Lal Jee, the Creator is enraged.(49)


Khalsa is the one who looks after the poor.

Khalsa is the one who annihilates the the evil-doers.(50)

Khalsa is the one who remembers the divine name.

Khalsa is the one who invades the barbarians.(51)

Khalsa is the one who is permeated with the celestial entity.

Khalsa is the one who destroys the bondage.(52)

Khalsa is the one who rides the horse.

Khalsa is the one who is ever ready for righteous war.(53)

Khalsa is the one who adorns the arms.

Khalsa is the one who exterminates the vicious.(54)


Outcry prevails for the Almighty and the slander fosters no one.

The hills and forests in all the three domains (of creation) will remember



Listen, Nand Lal, this is the veracity,

Through which (I) reveal my sovereignty.(56)

All the four castes, (I) blend into one caste,

And popularise the worship of Waheguru.(57)

They will mount the horse and fly the falcon,

Seeing them as such, Turks (enemies) will flee.(58)

(I will) make the one combat a hundred and twenty-five thousand.

The Sikh proceeding thus, (I will) get emancipated.(59)

The spears wave and the elephants are decorated,

At every door the victory drums beat.(60)

When a hundred and twenty-five thousands fire-works sparkle,

Then assume that, Khalsa has attained victory.(61)


The Khalsa will rule and the rebels will be eliminated,

All will be obliged to join and only those who surrender will survive.(62)

This is the directive of Guru, that if the son of a Sikh shaves the head,

His posterity will be ruined, and if a shaven one becomes Sikh, his

descendants will flourish.

This concludes the Code of punishment

Translation by Pritpal Singh

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Guest lifewithsoul

Hmm, as a contextual interpretation can I say combing hair twice and tying turban, the focus is on the combing and cleaning, and turban happens to be the cultural norm. Secondly, shaving the head, is not literal, but means becoming a ritualizing Hindu again? If this is acceptable and I feel from the depths of my heart it is, then, Khalsa prevails in many external forms, judged more by their high ideals and deeds than by appearance.  Waheguru hi ka Khalsa, Waheguru hi ki Fatah. I accept and ask Gurujis blessings for such a Khalsa.


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