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Bhai Abdulla

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Bhai Abdulla was, according to some Sikh chroniclers, a Muslim minstrel who recited heroic balladry at Sikh congregations in the time of Guru Hargobind (1595-1644). Abdul was born in the village of Sursingh, now in the Amritsar district of the Punjab. He first came to Amritsar in 1606 at the time of the installation ceremony for Guru Hargobind at the Akal Takht. According to Gurbilas Chhevin Patshahi, he and his companion, Bhai Nattha, sang the following stanza on the occasion:

The Throne everlasting Has by the Holy Guru's presence become hallowed, Indescribable is its splendour, How may I sing its glory?
Seeing the Guru, Both the sun and the moon were shamed. So sat on the throne the Holy Guru to the remembrance of the Lord God attached.

Abdul and Nattha composed this verse to sing the Guru's praise. Both Abdul and Nattha remained at Amritsar thereafter and recited poetry extolling chivalrous deeds of past heroes. When Baba Gurditta, Guru Har Gobind`s eldest son, was married, he was taken round by the Guru to Akal Takht and Harmandar Sahib to make obeisance. The Guru then invited Abdul to recite a panegyric.

Abdul and Nattha, as reports Gurbilas Chhevin Patshahi, accompanied Guru Har Gobind when he left Amritsar for Kiratpur in the Sivalik hills. As his days on Earth were drawing near, Guru Har Gobind asked them to return to their native Sursingh.


1. Gurbilas Chhevin Patshahi. Patiala, 1970

2. Macauliffe, Max Arthur, The Sikh Religion. Oxford, 1909

3. Gupta, Hari Ram, History of the Sikhs, vol. I. Delhi, 1973

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