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Prem Sumarag

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According to an article on the Prem Sumarag, the following content can be found in the Prem Sumarag:

Chapter VII describes death rites

Chapter VIII contains the author's views regarding Sikh polity. According to him, the ideal form of Sikh state is monarchy

Chapter IX deals with miscellaneous mat ters such as rules of inheritance and distribution of property, debts and interest rate, slaves, animals, gardens and agricultural land.

if this is the case, how come noone mentioned this granth when we were discussing the lack of a "sharia" in Sikhism a few months back? is it a controverisal text among sikhs of today or?


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Singh Ji,

The reference to the monarchy clearly proves (IMHO) this rehitnama was written after Ranjit Singh became Maharaja, and was thus either directly or indirectly influenced as such (not to say it does not still reflect original rehit content).

The few references to secular law are a reflection of the evolution of a legal system which develops alongside any Kingdom (as Sharia was developed).

The large part of the writing refers to rehit or faith (Khalsa) based law/ritual/rules.

End of the day, Sikhs do not have a Kingdom or Country, and therefore do not have, nor need (at this point) a complete legal system (secular).

If and when this changes, Sikhs will develop one, just as Jews, Muslims, Christians and 'Hindus' have developed one, based on the principles of their faith, Sikh writings and decisions made in Sikh history.

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I don't think a rehitnama has yet been discovered which can solely be attributed to Dasam Patshah (although scholar Bhai Randhir Singh Ji claimed this was), they are all written or retold by other Sikhs, like I said, doesn't mean to say the Prem Sumarg does not contain many truths, as with most non-canonical sikh literature, opinions vary individual to individual. Take from it that which speaks to your heart.

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I bought a copy of Prem Sumarag off Amazon and have finished with it - if anyone in the UK wants it, let me know and I'll post it.

It definitely isn't written by Maharaj Ji. The style of clothing mentioned, types of coins and many other details are from a much later period. The Amrit ceremony is also different. The description given of how Kaljug will end is also different from what Maharaj Ji wrote in Sri Dasam Granth Ji, which makes it clear that they didn't write Prem Sumarag.

The date given at the end is sammat 1931 (1874 AD), although McLeod thinks this only applies to a particular copy. From the tone of the writing though, I would say it was written during the Misl period, just before Raja Ranjit Singh took full control.

It certainly has good bits in it, but there are others that don't agree with Gurbani, or the traditions of any puratan sampardaye. One of these is the use of betel leaf - which is seen as poison by Singhs, other differences are in the Nitnem, wedding ceremony, diet, dress and how to 'purify' muslims who want to become Sikh.

The author also says that the book should not be spoken of or read to anyone.....

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Prem Sumarg represents evolved local traditions and maryada, as do most rehitnamai , with the primary basis having an authentic foundation, and it have being added to since, reflecting the Khalsa's changing environment and challenges over time.

nicely put there, that is exactly my thought on prem sumarag granth.

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