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khatris and budha dal


tSingh
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I'm sure Lalleshvari has stated how Nirmalay historically have protected themselves from being headed by brahmins.

But do Buddha Dal have a similar policy in relation to 'higher' castes e.g. khatri? Are there any 'higher caste' khatri Nihangs? What status do they have within Buddha Dal?

thanks in advance

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Guest Javanmard

Akali Baba Santa SIngh Himself is a Khatri so I think there is no such policy in the Nihang sampradaya. Haiving said there are Brahmin Nirmalas but fact is that they will never have the leadership over the whole sampradaya because of the consitution of the sampradaya which clearly says that only a Jatt can be Shri MAhant. Now other groups (Ramgharias, Ravidasis, Khatris) might find it a discrimination but on the other hand one has to see it as a clear message to the Bramins saying that unlike other religious movements Sikhi will NOT be recuperated by Brahmins!Jatts being the absolute nightmare of Brahmins at that time it was only normal to keep the Nirmala leadership for a Jatt scholar so that it sends a clear message. Also it serves as an example for Jatts to show that Jatts can be high ranking intellectuals as well.

At the end of the day it is just a game of symbols which has little bearing in the way how Nirmalas interact amongst themselves!

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Guest Javanmard

There is no caste-base discrimination against any caste among Nirmalas as there are Brahmin Nirmalas as well. Is just that the head of the order has to be a Jatt in the same way as only Siklighar Sikhs are allowed to do the seva of Maharaj's weapons at Hazur Sahib: it's about tradition here not discrimination. The origin of the Nirmalas has to do with the fact that the Brahmins refused to teach Jatt Sikhs. Guru Gobind SIngh started the Nirmalas to prove them wrong.Nirmalas are from all backgrounds (including Brahmins) but the head of the order (and that's quite a symbolic position) has to be a Jatt in honour of the tradition. Guru Gobind SIngh had predicted that one day the Jatts would be teaching the Brahmins, that is why the head of the Nirmale is a Jatt. This has nothing to do with discrimination: it's actually balancing things out!

No: Baba Santa Singh is a Khatri not a Mazhbi.

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Ok, I understand. So it’s just symbolic for sake of tradition. But still, I cant stop feeling that if I were a Brahman Sikh, I would feel offended at this tradition. Maybe in the future the Nirmala might change it. But Veer Lalleshwari is this tradition only followed by one or two Nirmala Jathas, or by all of them?

Also, do Nirmalas have a website?

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Thanks, it was just something I was curious about...certainly since the point has been made before, that buddha dal are relatively open about such issues, rather than the repulsively veiled 'equality' that some modern sikhs proport to believe in.

I also find it interesting in light of McLeod's statements regarding how khatris and other 'higher' castes responded to a shasterdhari maryada. According to McLeod through the passage of time, by the time of the census many were sahajdhari. This is interesting and I'd be intrigued to know the number of Khatris and Aroras within Budha Dal historically. I've never checked out older sources for these statements. Anyone got any ideas of where I could find out? Does Bhangu perhaps outline the jaat of figures in Panth Prakash?

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the consitution of the sampradaya which clearly says that only a Jatt can be Shri MAhant. Now other groups (Ramgharias, Ravidasis, Khatris) might find it a discrimination

You get Jatt in Ramgarhia Misl.I know a few Jatt who are Ramgarhia.

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Nihang chief of Budha Dal (Jathedar Santa Singh) is from "Arora" caste. I don' know if his brothers still run that sweet shop (Halwayee Dee shop) but there was one sweet shop which his brothers used to run.

Lalleshwari wrote:

The origin of the Nirmalas has to do with the fact that the Brahmins refused to teach Jatt Sikhs.

If im not mistaken last time you mentioned in your article that "Tarkhans" & "Jatts" both were refused? Because it cannot be possible for Guru jee to have only jatts around him. Also, were they Punjabi jatts? Or Non-Punjabi Jatts?

It is my humble request to all of our members that whenever we start discussion such as this then it should be our duty to clarify that time has changed. Now you can learn Sanskrit from any school in India and there is no discrimination of castes. I have seen by myself that most of the teenagers Sikh take wrong views from these discussions sometimes.

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96 Crore Jathedar Singh Sahib Akali Nihang Baba Santa Singh Ji is Khatri Sikh by caste. His entire biography will be on www.shastarvidiya.org in June, along with detailed transcripts of interviews with him.

In my personal experience, within Akali Nihang Dals, Khatri Sikhs are given greater respect due to their inherent traditional character traits that are/were considered favourable amonst Indian armies.

Within Nihang Singhs, there is inherent distinction based upon caste that can be traced all the way back to the origins of the Budha Dal, and formalisation of the Dal Panth at Anandpur Sahib. Even today there is a Mazbi Dal headed by Majbi Sikhs.

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Guest Sardar Moderator Singh

For the benefit of the forum, please could Narsingha and Lalleshvari (or indeed anyone else who has available references on the Nihangs and Nirmalas, respectively) comment on the following points arising from the above mentioned:

* The Mazbi Nihang Singhs (or the 'Chauta Pahr') are initiated (given the Paul) via a separate Bata to non-Mazbis, as is the case with Baba Bawa Singh Nihang's Dal (which are predominantly of Mazbi origin).

Please explain the underlying concepts behind this practice, which many in the 'modern' understanding of Sikhi may object to as contradictory to the concept of the Paul uniting the 4 castes.

*Jatts retain a key feature within the Nirmala establishments for the reasons outlined above by Lalleshvari. It is also noted that the 'Prem Sumarg Granth' from which much of the Nirmala Rehit is evoked, also warns against Ramgharia Sikhs and speaks of this group being of lower capability.

Please could those familiar with these works expand on the reasoning for these assertions, for in many ways they appear in some ways to only spell out what exists behind closed-doors in modern day "cultural" and "social" Sikh practice.

As indicated by the Admin, please could we keep matters/discussions objective and refrain from letting this fall into a Caste debate, which is a matter that has been extensively discussed elsewhere.

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Guest Javanmard

1. Well first of all the distinction between Jatt and Ramgharia is quite a new one. As many articles have shown many Jatts actually joined the Ramgharia Misl and from the point of view of Indian society Tarkhans and Jatts were not too different in rank anyway. One has to be aware that the caste system as we know it today was actually made more exclusive under British rule because of the census and the administration. There seems to be a more flexible attitude between castes (jati) in pre-colonial Panjab anyway and the case of inter-caste marriages was not so rare at all. Jatts are renowned to have married outside their caste on numerous occasions. It makes me laugh when I hear Jatt Sikhs talking in a frankly racist manner about other groups calling them "f***ing low caste etc.." when they themselves have probably some common genes with the ones they are hating!As far as the Prem Sumarg Granth is concerned the criticism found against Ramgharias (also found in Sudharm Marg Granth) is due to socio-political reasons and has to be treated as an interpolation. Ramgharias have produced some of the most beautiful flowers of the Panth and such criticism in those works is only the expression of some Jatt superiority complex that uses Sikhi to impose it on other groups.

2. Regarding the creation of Nirmalas one has to see the mention of the Jatts as being representatives of all the groups excluded from classical education. So it is not a Jatt only club. There is a very high percentage of non-Jatts among the Nirmalas so the accusation of discrimination has no real basis.

3. As far as Mazhbi SIkhs are concerned one has to look at the religious and historical context of the times. Most Indian religious groups simply refused to initiate outcasts. Some religious movements such as the Shri Vaishnavas, Ramanandis and other Vaishnava groups do accept them but the problem then arises as to how they should be initiated. Most chose to initiate them separately others don't but the fact remains that this actually does not change much of their social reality. In the case of the Nihangs it seems that the Mazhbi have the right to receive initiation but get it separately rather than not at all. Hazur Sahib does not separate at all.

My personal opinion on the matter is that Hazur Sahib's maryada is in this respect better for as long as we see high and low in the Panth we will be easy targets for any ennemy. The strength of Islam has percisely been this ability to recognise humanity as one and so did our Gurus. Caste is good as long as it remains a frame of reference for one's origins but "castism" and its discrimination against other groups should be exterminated without any mercy. How may lives have been broken by this disease, how may loves?

There is no high or low blood! Blood is red and that is it! A Sikh should regard his/her fellow SIkh as his/her brother/sister. As soon as one starts discriminating one simply stops being a Sikh!!!

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There is no high or low blood! Blood is red and that is it! A Sikh should regard his/her fellow SIkh as his/her brother/sister. As soon as one starts discriminating one simply stops being a Sikh!!!

I liked what you have said above and this is the way to go for everyone no matter what caste, race, religion they come from. I think there are more casualties occured on the name of religion and races than anything else.

But one thing is surprising to me though that when it comes to S.G.P.C you oppose Jatt leadership but when it comes to Nirmalas you are supporting them. I'm not scholar like you so I got confused on this matter.

Regards,

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The strength of Islam has percisely been this ability to recognise humanity as one and so did our Gurus.

Dear Lalleshwari,

I am at a loss to understand this observation. Please shed some more light on this comment.

Regards

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Guest Javanmard

To Admin:

regarding SGPC I really couldn't care less about this bunge of heretics who claim to be the Panth!!!! If the leadership goes to Jatts, Khatris or even Martians: I just couldn't care less!

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If the leadership goes to Jatts, Khatris or even Martians: I just couldn't care less!

Thanks! for clarifying. I think Sikhs leadership should be in hands of Gursikhs and that's all I care about. We don't really need bunch of political leaders.

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Dear Lalleshwari,

I am at a loss to understand this observation. Please shed some more light on this comment.

Regards

I would also like to see the reason for lalleshvaris comment above.

Lalleshvari as a non-jat , non-punjabi, non-indian, non-asian no offence but aren't you traditionally viewed as a Mallesh by the sampardaiyas?

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Lalleshvari as a non-jat , non-punjabi, non-indian, non-asian no offence but aren't you traditionally viewed as a Mallesh by the sampardaiyas?

This is a personal attack towards Lalleshvari. For that, you deserve your first warning unless you appolize. I ll consult with other moderators and action will be taken.

Why we think this is personal attack ???

Its because there are 3ho sikhs who are " non-jat , non-punjabi, non-indian, non-asian" but they are accepted as sikhs by other sampardha and most importantly "Akaaal Takth"- Supreme Authority of Sikhs!!! .. what makes you think he is viewed as mallesh by other sampardha's when 3ho white sikhs are not!!!!

So he is not individually consider as mallesh unless off course he acts like one!!!!!

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