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Dynamics of The Social Thought of Guru Gobind Singh - Book By Dharam Singh

Publisher: Punjabi-University-Patiala
Authors: Dharam Singh
Page: 160
Format: Hardbound
Language: English
Product Code: SGE158
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Foreword To The Book 'Dynamics of The Social Thought of Guru Gobind Singh' By Dharam Singh

The 300th birth anniversary of the Khalsa Panth will be observed all over the world in 1999. It is going to be a landmark in the history of the Khalsa Panth which had been created by Guru Gobind Singh on the Vaisakhi (30th March) of A. D. 1699. Before his dis-appearance from the scene in 1708, Guru Gobind Singh bestowed the pontifical office on the Khalsa Panth and the Guru Granth Sahib. To be precise, it is bestowed on the Word enshrined in the Guru Granth Sahib, which comprises hymns of the six of the ten Sikh Gurus and many a saint, belonging both to the Hindu and the Islamic traditions.

The Punjabi University, Patiala, proposes to bring out a series of books to mark the tricentenary of the Khalsa. The books will focus on the universal values of the Sikh faith and throw into relief its futuristic vision. Dr. Dharam Singh's Dynamics of the Social Thought of Guru Gobind Singh forms part of the project being undertaken by the University in the context of the tricentenary celebrations of the Khalsa Panth.

The book makes an analytical and interpretative study of Guru Gobind Singh's select hymns. The preceding and contemporary socio-political milieu, which had shaped the Sikh ethos and polity, is also  subjected to scrutiny. Dr. Dharam Singh underlines the distinctiveness of the metaphysical doctrines that emerge from the text and takes into account the ontological and epistemological premises which, in a specific sense, set the Sikh world-view apart from that of the Indian-born and the Semitic religious traditions.

I am sure the present book will constitute a notable addition to the exsisting literature on the social philosophy of Guru Gobind Singh.

Joginder Singh Puar

Introduction To The Book 'Dynamics of The Social Thought of Guru Gobind Singh' By Dharam Singh

There have been quite a good number of books on the life of Guru Gobind Singh including a few on his works in their individual or collective form. Most of this literature came up during 1966 or soon thereafter : 1966 was celebrated as the tercentenary of the Guru's birth. However, there has been very little work done on the philosophy especially the social philosophy of Guru Gobind Singh. The book in hand is perhaps the first full-length study of the social thought of the Guru. Another characteristic feature the of book is that it does not accept Guru Gobind Singh's social ideology as historical necessity but derives it from his metaphysical thought.

After a descriptive analysis of source materials, the book goes on to a discussion of Sikh philosophy, theology and relationship of God with the cosmos, human kind and the whole of creation. The author has based all his assumptions on the bani of Guru Gobind Singh as included in the Dasam Granth, and of course on that of the preceding Gurus as contained in the Guru Granth Sahib. He takes into account the background in general Indian philosophies and the religous movements (including Islam) in the days of the Gurus, very carefully pointing out that these are but background and raw material, shaped and created anew by the Sikh Gurus. Thus, he firmaly traces the grounds of the social thought of Guru Gobind Singh in its essential basis in every aspect of Gurmat. That is why we do not have social thought in itself, it is social thought and action as it flows out of Sikh philosophy, theology and tradition.

It is this consistent pattern of love, equality, equity (through sharing and service of all), compassion and self-respect which we have seen among the most admirable achievements of Sikhism and indeed guarantee its continuance and spread. From Banda Singh Bahadur's redistribution of land to the Sikhs of Toronto joining in the philanthropic schemes to assist the underprivileged the motives and springs of action have been the divine source. That is the nature of God and God's purpose and presence in the world as embodied in the granth (Guru Granth Sahib) and the panth (Khalsa Panth).

We have to thank Dr Dharam Singh for bringing this out in clear logical thought stated in a strong, attractive and pure English prose. His entry into the world of academics has not been easy and smooth, and he has come to academic writing the hard way. But there is sure promise as we look forward to other important works from his fluent pen and fertile mind.

Professor Emeritus of History and Comparative Religion Noel Q. King
University of California  
Table Of Contents Of The Book 'Dynamics of The Social Thought of Guru Gobind Singh' By Dharam Singh


  INDEX 155-159


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