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Amrit Vela - Sant Singh Ji Maskeen

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Wjkk Wjkf Jeo,

This katha is about the importance of waking up at amrit vela :) Please forgive me for the countless grammatical mistakes and other errors. Read on! :)

------------------------------------------ AMRIT VELA --------------------------------------------------------

ਹਰਿ ਧਨੁ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਵੇਲੈ ਵਤੈ ਕਾ ਬੀਜਿਆ ਭਗਤ ਖਾਇ ਖਰਚਿ ਰਹੇ ਨਿਖੁਟੈ ਨਾਹੀ ॥

har dhhan anmrith vaelai vathai kaa beejiaa bhagath khaae kharach rehae nikhuttai naahee ||

The devotees of the Lord plant the seed of the Lord's wealth in the ambrosial hours of the Amrit Vaylaa; they eat it, and spend it, but it is never exhausted. (Ang 734, SGGS Ji)

ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਵੇਲਾ ਸਚੁ ਨਾਉ ਵਡਿਆਈ ਵੀਚਾਰੁ ॥

anmrith vaelaa sach naao vaddiaaee veechaar ||

In the Amrit Vaylaa, the ambrosial hours before dawn, chant the True Name, and contemplate His Glorious Greatness. (Ang 2, SGGS Ji)

The Bani of Dhan Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj gives special importance to Amrit Vela. If we look at the way nature has formed us, we can observe that seasons and time have their influences on one's mind. During monsoon season, the whole natural landscape looks melancholic. The strong gushing winds, the falling leaves, make the branches change their appearance, and the trees appear sad and naked. The nature of one's mann appears to be exactly the same as well. In the spring season, the entire vegetation, leaves and flowers look bright and happy. Beautiful flowers of different colours provide a colourful costume to the land and decorates it with immense grace. The spring season also leaves a special impression on one's mind. Similarly, summer and winter season both create impact on one's mind. In winter, we have to switch to warm clothes while summer forces us to put these warm clothes aside. Therefore, seasons influence one's body and mind both.

Just like seasons, time - the four pehars of day and four pehars of night, also creates their influence on one's body and mind. Sants had figured out long ago that, if one has sleeps before the end of the first pehar of the night, the body's need for sleep completes in the fourth pehar of the night. It is a different matter that, if one has not slept on time, it is difficult to wake up at Amrit Vela. But, if one has gone to sleep at the right time, then nature automatically wakes one up on time as well. We can observe nature wakes up the birds and animals on the right time, this is because their sleep is natural, in total accordance with the laws of nature. When the night enters the fourth pehar, the birds wake up and start twittering, the cows and their calves start mooing, the animal kingdom obeys this law of nature. Human beings, however, have made their sleeping and waking patterns artifical, and this artificiality can be observed in the eating and dressing habits as well.

By distancing themselves away from nature, human beings started going further away from Akaal Purakh too. In order to come closer to Akaal Purakh, it is imperative one comes closer to nature and adopt its laws in the lifestyle. So, the great Sants realised the fact that this fourth pehar is highly beneficial for Naam Simran. It is said, if one has eaten properly at night, it brings about laziness in the body and sleep takes over. During the sleep, the food is digested and the body starts getting rid of the laziness, and the body eventually wakes up when the laziness is over. Just like body will need food again, similarly, the mind will need Naam Simran too. It is said, 'Sau lugmeh din de, te ik lugmah subeh da' – saadhna done during the entire day and the saadhna done at amrit vela becomes equal. Dhan Guru Nanak Dev Ji clearly states:

ਜੇ ਇਕੁ ਹੋਇ ਤ ਉਗਵੈ ਰੁਤੀ ਹੂ ਰੁਤਿ ਹੋਇ ॥

jae eik hoe th ougavai ruthee hoo ruth hoe ||

If the seed is whole, and it is the proper season, then the seed will sprout. (Ang 468, SGGS Ji)

That, even if the seed is complete, still it will need the help of proper season, only then it will sprout. The farmer who does not sow the seeds in accordance with the present season does not develop properly. That farmer will not be able to fill his granary with the sub-par output of his seeds.

The fourth pehar of the night has been referred by the snaatan sants as 'Bhram-Mahurat' – the time to meditate and connect with Bhram's Name. Guru Nanak Dev Ji called this time amrit vela – that time when rain of amrit is falling. Mohammed Sahib termed this time, 'Allill Subah', the morning of Allah - that morning, which automatically reminds one of God. Therefore, anyone who has any desire to be an 'Antarmukhi', this time helps immensely. Dhan Guru Ramdas Ji Maharaj says:

ਹਰਿ ਧਨੁ ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤ ਵੇਲੈ ਵਤੈ ਕਾ ਬੀਜਿਆ ਭਗਤ ਖਾਇ ਖਰਚਿ ਰਹੇ ਨਿਖੁਟੈ ਨਾਹੀ ॥

har dhhan anmrith vaelai vathai kaa beejiaa bhagath khaae kharach rehae nikhuttai naahee ||

The devotees of the Lord plant the seed of the Lord's wealth in the ambrosial hours of the Amrit Vaylaa; they eat it, and spend it, but it is never exhausted. (Ang 734, SGGS Ji)

Even Avtari Purash regard anybody who has recited the Naam at Amrit Vela in the highest of esteem. Bhai Sahib Bhai Nand Lal says:

Shabad kurban-e-khaake raahe sangat,

dile-e-goya humee bass aarzoo karat.

He says, Maharaj, there is only one desire left in my heart – Make me dust of the feet of that sangat that go towards you at Amrit Vela, such feet are pure and that walk is great. So, this walk is the walk towards Akaal Purakh, and waking up and meditating at Amrit Vela is a great device to accomplish that journey.

Bedari-ast zindaghi eh sahibaan-e-shauk

goya haraam-e-gardan aaieenda khawab-e-subah.

Bhai Nand Lal Ji goes further and says that anybody who has remained asleep during Amrit Vela, his sleep is Haraam, he has slept a sinful sleep.

Anybody who has got spiritually wiser, he has considered sleeping at Amrit Vela totally haraam. He wakes up naturally at amrit vela and utilises that time to its maximum.

Bhai Gurdas Ji does a prayer to Akaal Purakh:

nK isK lau sgl AMg rom rom kir

kwit kwit isKn ky crn pr vwrIAY ]

He says, hey Akaal Purakh, such is the state of my mind that I want my whole body to be cut into pieces, these pieces should go under the feet of the Gursikhs. But, the pieces of flesh will still remain. So, Bhai Gurdas Ji says:

Agin jlwie, Puin pIsn pIswie qWih

lY aufy pvn huie Aink pRkwrIAY ]

Burn the pieces of my flesh and crush the bones that remain. Then, request the wind to blow it all away. But then, wind cant keep dust with it, it will have to drop it somewhere at some time. Bhai Gurdas Ji says, yes, do drop it:

jq kq isK pg DrY gur pMQ pRwq

qwhU qwhU mwrg mY Bsm kY fwrIAY ]

But oh kind wind, drop this dust anywhere where the beloved Gursikhs wake up at amrit vela and meditate the name of Akaal Purakh.

iqh pd pwdk crn ilv lwgI rhY

dXw kY dXwl moih piqq auDwrIAY ]672]

This way, O Akaal Purakh Waheguru, a patit like me will be able attain salvation. So, anyone who wakes up at amrit vela and recites or listen to Gurbani, or does Waheguru Naam Jaap to move closer to God, such feet are truly blessed.

Bhai Gurdas Ji has written a precious pauri in regards to this:

ਚਰਣੋਦਕੁ ਹੋਇ ਸੁਰਸਰੀ ਤਜਿ ਬੈਕੁੰਠ ਧਰਤਿ ਵਿਚਿ ਆਈ ।

charanodaku hoi surasaree taji baikuntd dharati vichi aaee|

Ganges, the wash of the Lords' feet, left heavens and came down to arth. (Vaar 3, Pauri 4, Bhai Gurdas Ji)

The mythology says Ganges is the water of Shiva's hair, of Bhrama's Karmandal, and water that washed Vishnu's feet. The myth goes like this: Brahma had thrown the water from that karmandal on vishnu's feet. This water ended up falling on Shiv's hair and that water eventually came to be known as Ganges. The shape given to this myth by Bhai Gurdas Ji is indeed remarkable:

ਚਰਣੋਦਕੁ ਹੋਇ ਸੁਰਸਰੀ ਤਜਿ ਬੈਕੁੰਠ ਧਰਤਿ ਵਿਚਿ ਆਈ ।

charanodaku hoi surasaree taji baikuntd dharati vichi aaee|

Ganges, the wash of the Lords' feet, left heavens and came down to arth.

ਨਉ ਸੈ ਨਦੀ ਨੜਿੰਨਵੈ ਅਠਸਠਿ ਤੀਰਥਿ ਅੰਗਿ ਸਮਾਈ ।

nau sai nadee narhinnavai atdasatdi teeradi angi samaaee|

Nine hundred ninety nine rivers and sixty eight pilgrimage centres erged in it. (Vaar 3, Pauri 4, Bhai Gurdas Ji)

According to Bhai Gurdas Ji, there are nine hundred and ninety nine perennial rivers flowing on this earth. Bhai Gurdas Ji says, out of all these rivers, Ganges is considered as the most important, and its water has its own unique properties because of the minerals and other elements found at its floor at various places. People often suggest someone sick to try 'changing the air', and it has been observed it does have a positive affect. Actually, physical fitness is one of the important conditions of Naam Simram. And, water from the Ganges used to work like amrit for keeping the body fit. In those time, washing clothes or spitting in Ganges was considered a major sin but these days, Ganges is used for dumping sewage water, it is being converted into poison. Maskeen Ji apologises for deviating and continues: There are about sixty eight different pilgrimages are constructed on the banks of Ganges. People go these pilgrimages and try to purify their mind, body and souls.

ਤਿਹੁ ਲੋਈ ਪਰਵਾਣੁ ਹੈ ਮਹਾਦੇਵ ਲੈ ਸੀਸ ਚੜ੍ਹਾਈ ।

tihu|oee paravaanu hai mahaadayv|ai sees charhhaaee|

In all the three worlds, it is accepted as authentic and Mahadev Shiva has borne it on his head.

ਦੇਵੀ ਦੇਵ ਸਰੇਵਦੇ ਜੈ ਜੈ ਕਾਰ ਵਡੀ ਵਡਿਆਈ ।

dayvee dayv sarayvaday jai jai kaar vadee vadiaaee|

Gods and goddesses all worship it and hail s greatness. (Vaar 3, Pauri 4, Bhai Gurdas Ji)

But Bhai Sahib Bhai Gurdas Ji's perspective which follows has its own unique greatness:

ਸਣੁ ਗੰਗਾ ਬੈਕੁੰਠ ਲਖ ਲਖ ਬੈਕੁੰਠ ਨਾਥਿ ਲਿਵ ਲਾਈ ।

sanu gangaa baikuntd|akh|akh baikuntd naadi|iv|aaee|

Myriads of heavens and the master of heavens including the ranges, absorbed in meditation declare,

Millions of Ganges from millions of Brahma's karmandal, millions of Ganges from Vishnu's feet and Millions of Ganges from Shiva's hair declare:

ਸਾਧੂ ਧੂੜਿ ਦੁਲਭ ਹੈ ਸਾਧਸੰਗਤਿ ਸਤਿਗੁਰੁ ਸਰਣਾਈ ।

saadhoo dhoorhi dulabh hai saadhasangati satiguru saranaaee|

that the dust of the feet of sadhu is rare and is obtainable only by coming under the shelter of the true Guru. (Vaar 3, Pauri 4, Bhai Gurdas Ji)

That sant who is awake at amrit vela and is meditating Akaal Purakh's name by placing all his attention in The Word, such millions of Ganges can be sacrificed over him.

We get to hear the beautiful sounds of birds singing at amrit vela, the happy, joyous sounds are heard at that time. Nobody is more unfortunate than the one who has slept this time away. If one has awoken at amrit vela, however, it would be difficult to find someone more fortunate than him. That time is meant to be dedicated to God, time can be taken out of the day to earn money, eat food, discuss politics, etc.

It is said that maya is asleep at amrit vela. By that, we mean because the rest of the world around us is asleep, there is less negative energy in the air, something which can disturb the concentration while meditating. One can meditate during the day but the immense negative energy during the day will not allow to concentrate fully. So, O human, wake up at amrit vela, create positive energy within you so that you can avail the nectars of Akaal Purakh's blessings.

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  • 11 years later...

wjkk wjkf ji, 

I was trying to get some information regarding the 8 pehars. I know each pehar is 3 hours. I am wondering when does the first pehar start, and what is the pichla pehar of night ? I tried googling but not much info available. Thanks. 

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The four Prahars of the day corresponds to-

Pehla Prahar 6:00 A.M. to 9 A.M 

Doosra Prahar 9:00 A.M. to Noon.

Teesra Prahar Noon to 3:00 P.M. 

Choutha Prahar 3:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M. 

The four Prahars of the night corresponds to-

Pehla Prahar 6:00 P.M. to 9 P.M. 

Doosra Prahar 9:00 P.M. to Midnight 

Teesra Prahar Midnight to 3:00 A.M. 

Choutha Prahar 3:00 A.M. to 6:00 A.M. 


This is what I think is the pehar system! I copied sometimes back but don't know from where!

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ਪਹਿਲਾ ਪਹਰੁ ਧੰਧੈ ਗਇਆ ਦੂਜੈ ਭਰਿ ਸੋਇਆ ॥
The first watch of the night passes away in worthless affairs, and the second passes in deep sleep.  What time period are we talking about in the first watch of night ?

ਤੀਜੈ ਝਾਖ ਝਖਾਇਆ ਚਉਥੈ ਭੋਰੁ ਭਇਆ ॥

In the third, they babble nonsense, and when the fourth watch comes, the day of death has arrived.


ਪਹਿਲੈ ਪਹਰੈ ਫੁਲੜਾ ਫਲੁ ਭੀ ਪਛਾ ਰਾਤਿ ॥
The first watch of the night brings flowers, and the later watches of the night bring fruit.  again here, which is the first watch of night and the later watches?

ਜੋ ਜਾਗੰਨ੍ਹ੍ਹਿ ਲਹੰਨਿ ਸੇ ਸਾਈ ਕੰਨੋ ਦਾਤਿ ॥੧੧੨॥
Those who remain awake and aware, receive the gifts from the Lord. ||112||


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