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In pics: Tracing the early days of golden temple

  • Bhaskar News
  • Nov 21, 2012, 01:11 AM IST
Golden temple
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Golden temple

The Harmandir Sahib also Darbar Sahib informally referred to as the Golden Temple is the pivotal sacred place for the Sikhs. Sri Harmandir Sahib literally means The Temple of God. The fourth guru of Sikhism, Guru Ram Das ji, excavated a tank in 1577 which subsequently became known as Amritsar giving its name to the city that grew around it. In due course, a Sikh edifice, Sri Harmandir Sahib rose in the middle of this tank and became the supreme centre of Sikhism. Its sanctum came to house the Adi Granth comprising compositions of Sikh Gurus and other saints like Baba Fareed and Kabir. 
 
The Harmandir Sahib was built by the fifth Guru of the Sikhs, Guru Arjan Dev, in the 16th Century. In 1604, Guru Arjan Dev ji completed the Adi Granth, the holy scripture of Sikhism, and installed it in the Gurdwara.
 

Find out more by clicking on the following slides

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    Golden temple
    Golden temple
    Sri Harmandir Sahib is considered holy by Sikhs. The most holy text of Sikhism, the Guru Granth Sahib is always present inside the Gurdwara. Its construction was mainly intended to build a place of worship for men and women from all walks of life and all religions to come and worship God equally. Over one lakh people visit the holy shrine daily for worship. The golden temple is made out of real gold.
     
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    Golden temple
    Golden temple
    This is how the Harmandir Sahab appeared in 1890. Maharaja Ranjit Singh had a complete dedication towards Sikhism and the temple is a mark of his respect towards the religion. 
     
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    Maharaja Ranjit Singh
    Maharaja Ranjit Singh
    Ranjit Singh was born to Maha Singh and Raj Kaur on 13 November 1780, in Gujranwala, Punjab, into a Sikh family. According to some historians, he was born into a Jatt Sikh family while others claim that he was born into a Sansi Sikh family. 
     
    As a child he suffered from smallpox which resulted in the loss of one eye. At the time, much of Punjab was ruled by the Sikhs under a Confederate Sarbat Khalsa system, who had divided the territory among factions known as misls. Ranjit Singh's father Maha Singh was the Commander of the Sukerchakia misl and controlled a territory in the west Punjab based around his headquarters at Gujranwala. After his father's death he was raised under the protection of Sada Kaur of the Kanheya Misl. Ranjit Singh succeeded his father at the age of 18.
     

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