GURU NANAK JAYANTHI
Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of the Sikh faith, was born in the month of Kartik(October /November), and his birthday is known as Guru Nanak Jayanti. He was born in 1469 A.D at Talwandi near Lahore.
Prabhat Pheris are taken out. These are the early morning processions that starts from the gurudwaras(Sikh temples) and then go around the localities singing Shabads(hymns). The celebrations also include the three day Akhand path, during which the holy book, the Guru Granth Sahib is read continuously, from beginning to end, without a break. On Guru Para,the day of the festival, the Granth Sahib is also carried in a procession on a float, decorated with flowers, throughout a village or city. Five armed guards, the Panj Pyares, head the procession carrying Nishan Sahibs( the Sikh flag). Local bands playing religious music form a special part of the procession.
Free sweets and Langar (community lunches) are offered to everyone irrespective of religious faith. Men, women and children, participate in this Karseva as service to community, cook food and distribute it in the ‘Guru Ka Langer’, with the traditional Karah Prasad.
Sikhs also visit Gurudwaras where special programs are arranged and kirtans (religious songs) are sung. Houses in Gurudwaras are lit up to add to the festivities.