The Truth behind 'Sukha'
Posted by: Akaalee
Date: January 28, 2010 12:48PM
The post by Admin about the Bibek Jeevan of Akali Kaur Singh was really great to read. It showed the real image of an Akali Khalsa. However it is sad to note that in today’s world this image has been severely damaged and altered. It’s partly been due to the manipulation of history and our inner weaknesses.
I remember reading the book about Akali Phula Singh Jee written by Prem Singh Hoti in the beginning of the last century. He felt the need to write this book because of the insulting image that was being displayed by the modern day nihungs of his time. He witnessed an intoxicated nihung making a fool of himself and people around him laughing at his actions. He felt the need to give accuracy to the Akali Banna and he did just that. The book was an amazing insight into the life of Akali Phula Singh, it showed the true glory of the Akalies. What a Sight they were under Akali Phula Singh Jee, 2000 strong Jatha of Sarblohi Khalsa in Neela Banna. Everyone loved and respected them except the people in power. They had total disregard to any worldly agreement made by the authorities and roamed care free over both parts of Punjab upholding Gurmat values. The Sutlej was no border for them.
Sadly that respect has all but gone out side their own circle. Don’t get me wrong I too have an Akali linkage, my Great Grandfather was known as an Akali Nihung so its in the blood. It is for this reason I would love to see the old glory restored.
I wouldn’t normally comment or bring up Maryada issues of Jathas, but I believe that one element of the modern day Nihungs needs to be addressed and that is the issue of Sukha.
The incorrect representation of Sukha has not only been damaging to individuals who use this but people around them and society. So it differs to other differences of Maryada jathas have between them. It seems some youth especially here in the U.K have been attracted by such thoughts. This has been noticed more so in this last decade previously no one in their correct mind would have entertained the matter.
It is clear that the most venerable and unstable can be duped into believing the uncontrolled practice of Sukha is some sort of maryada.
When we look at Gurbanee, we see that the true drink of Sukha is Gurbanee/Naam. This is the only thing that can give us Sukh.
This term of real Sukh has also been used in some old historical writings, one of which Admin put up from Shahid Bilas in the Shaheed Bhai Manee Singh post. It indicates the drink/food of Sukha to be this of Naam and Gurbanee. See below the description of Shahid Bhai Mani Singh
ਸਜ ਦੁਮਾਲਾ ਸ਼ਸਤਰ ਪਹਿਰੈ I (He would tie a Dumalla on his head and wear Shashtar)
ਨੀਲੰਬਰ, ਗਜ ਸਵਾ ਕਛਹਿਰੈ I (He wore a Blue bana and had a long Kachera – sava gaj)
ਪਕੜ ਦੁਤਾਰਾ ਗਾਵੈ ਬਾਣੀ I (He would hold a saaj and sing Gurbanee)
ਆਸਾ ਵਾਰ ਸੁਖਾਂ ਦੀ ਖਾਣੀ I ੧੮੨ I (He would recite Asaa Vaar and receive the food of peace)
In the same way a similar thing is mentioned in Prachin Panth Prakash about Baba Gurbaksh Singh in his daily routine at Amritvela. It says ਪ੍ਰਾਤ ਉਠੇ ਅਰ ਸੁੱਖਾ ਪੀਵੇ I
Even the modern nihungs would have to admit that this is referring to Naam/Gurbanee here in that context. You would have to be a junkie to be having this as the first thing you do when you get up.
So the terminology of Sukha has sometimes been misinterpreted by some including historians.
However the mention of Sukha as drug also appears in some books, this version of Sukha seems to start appearing in the books of the 19th century. I have not seen it being mentioned in anything credible written in the 18th century, however others can correct me on this. The 19th century seems to be the period of wide spread mal practices in Gurmat and this is well documented.
It is quite clear that Rehatnamas and Sakhis of Guru Jee have clearly indicated the prohibition of intoxicants in Sikhee. So how did this usage come about you may ask?
In my judgement this usage came about after Guru Gobind Singh Jee’s period. As the rehat and jeevan got weaker some within the Khalsa Panth clearly could not keep up to the same level as their predecessors. In Wars and battle you would see horrific infliction of wounds on GurSikhs and my view is that this introduction of Sukha was initially as a pain killer. It must have become acceptable to use for operations or healing similar to using sedatives today. These sedatives and pain killers are basically some sort of drug. There would have been many chardi kala GurSikhs who would have refused this assistance and preferred to heal it with Naam. The ones who would need to use this might have been made to go pesh, but only as something for them to go back on track on and be able to do seva again.
I can’t buy the theory that Sukha would have been used to prepare themselves for battle. For anyone that has been involved in fighting will know that being intoxicated in a fight is no real help rather it could be a disadvantage. This would also give the impression that the Khalsa did not have the courage to consciously go into battle.
So initially the use of Sukha may have been introduced for the weaker ones but it has now been turned into some sort of Maryada and a social/recreational drug. It does not serve any purpose in a normal GurSikh’s life.
This is only my analysis on this subject, however I am open to listen to other sensible views from supporters of the Sukha drug on its history and relevance with some proof other than something written in the 19th century.
I’ve posted my views on this site, as I know there are other more knowledgeable GurSikhs who have studied history who maybe able to help out any distortions that may be put forward by others.
Re: The Truth behind 'Sukha'
Posted by: 13khalsa
Date: January 29, 2010 07:10AM
Below is an article from the old tapoban forum it shows the shame brought to the image of the Akali Baana from intoxicated nihungs.
When the Nihangs took Control of Sree Akaal Takhat in 1920
By Bhai NaraiN Singh jee MA in Soora October 1988
Translated by Admin www.tapoban.org
This story is about some Nihangs who supported anti-Sikh elements. There were and are many Gursikh Nihangs in the Panth like Baba Mitt Singh jee and Akali Kaur Singh jee, but many in the costume of Nihangs have in the past and continue today to attack the Panth and serve anti-Panthic interests. Bhai Sahib Randheer Singh jee and a big Jatha of Singhs and Singhnees, led by Bibi Joginder Kaur also drove out corrupt Nihangs/Nangs from Gurdwara Chamkaur Sahib.
This story begins after the Panth had taken control over Sree Akaal Takhat Sahib and the corrupt "pujaris" had run away. These pujaris refused to accept the Karah Parshaad of "low castes" and when a Jatha of Singhs came to offer Karah Parshaad with a former "low caste" a hukumnama was taken from Sree Guru Granth Saahib jee and the hukumnama clearly said that even the lowest were transformed by the Guru and Sikhi had no place for caste. The Pujaris then ran away from the Takhat and abandoned their posts. This historic day was October 12, 1920. The story begins here:
The Pujaris of Sree Akaal Takhat Sahib brought the "Nihangs" who were staying at Burj Baba Phoola Singh jee 5 goats, 5 sacks of sugar, almonds, flour and other supplies. They collected the Nihangs together and with folded hands said "Nihang Singh jee! Sree Akaal Takhat belongs to the Nihangs, you are its caretaker. Look! The Mallechh (impure) Khalsa, those Singh Sabbhias, have taken it over. You prepare yourselves, and we'll give the control of the Takhat to you.
At that time, the Nihangs had taken Sukha (cannibis drink) and were fully intoxicated. The Pujari's proposal was immediately accepted. Jathedar Sahib Singh jee Nihang ordered, "We'll slaughter the goats in the morning, now we should get ready to take over Sree Akaal Takhat".
At 12pm, a group of 50 Nihangs arrived at Sree Akaal Takhat Sahib and sat down there. Jathedar Kartar Singh jee Jhabbar was in Bazaar Mai Sevaa(n) and was told that the Nihangs had now taken control of the Takhat. Jathedar Jhabbar was preparing to leave for Panja Sahib but had to change his plans. He went and stood under the balcony in front of Sree Akaal Takhat Saahib. A Nihang saw him and called out "Bhai Kartar Singh Jhabbar! You're a Jathedar (so I'll talk to you). My name is Gopal Singh Giani. I'm the secretary for the Nihang Jatha. We've thrown you out of here (the Takhat) and taken control."
Jhabbar replied, "Sree Nihang Singh jee! You shouldn’t' challenge other Singhs like this. You stay put and I'll be back soon."
A Jatha of Akalis was coming at that time near the Bunga of Maanaavalay. Bhai Teja Singh Bhuchhar was accompanying it as well. Jhabbar stopped this Jatha and told them what had happened and explained that they should wait before taking action as ther were a lot of Nihangs and another Jatha of Akalis was coming. Soon, the Dhoori vala Malvai Jatha under Gajjan Singh also arrived. Jathedar Jhabbar stopped the Jatha by Laichi Ber and explained that the Nihangs were also Singhs and brothers so they shouldn't be attacked. First they should be talked too and have the situation explained.
Jathedar Jhabbar went before the Takhat and called out, "Nihang Singh jee! The management of the Takhat is now in the hands of the Panth. Please leave." The Nihangs however were intoxicated with Sukha and ignored these words. Jathedar Jhabbar tried to make them understand but they would not listen. They instead began to speak insulting words in return.
Jathedar Jhabbar then stepped back and motioned towards his Jatha. At this, the Khalsa, like lions arrived at the Takhat. They grabbed the Nihangs and threw them down. In the Malvai Jatha, there was an 18 year old daughter of a Subedar, Bibi Bhajan Kaur who was badly beating the Nihangs and was throwing them down. The Bibi grabbed one Nihang and was dragging him by the leg but Jathedar Jhabbar released him. The Bibi, who had a staff in her hands, then went and struck at Jathdar Sahib Singh and attacked him. Finally, two Singhs had to hold this Bibi back and prevent her from attacking even more.
Many Nihangs ran away and the rest were surrounded. Hearing all the commotion, a lot of Singhs from the city also arrived. One Singh suggested that the Nihangs be handed over to the police. Another Singh brought a piece of paper and said to Jathedar Sahib Singh, "write on this paper that you've made a mistake and the Panth should forgive you. Then put your thumbprint on it and we'll let you go." Jathedar Sahib Singh put his thumbprint on the paper and the Nihangs were forgiven. Later it was found out that Giani Gopal Singh, the one who had challenged the Singhs had run away from a back door. The Singhs from the city brought some carts and the Nihangs were put on them and taken back to ChhaoNee Burj Baba Phoola Singh. (Taken from the book "Kartar Singh Jhabbar")
Re: The Truth behind 'Sukha'
Posted by: admin
Date: June 02, 2010 08:24AM