Sikh Gurus > Guru Harrai Ji

While Dara Shikoh was on his way to Lahore , the Guru happened to be in Goindwal. He met the Guru. Many writers give their own fanciful accounts of the assistance that the Guru gave to Dara. What type of assistance Dara asked or the Guru gave to Dara, is a big question? He had all the royal wealth, he had his generals and he had his army of thousand and thousand of men. He enlisted twenty thousand men in his army within days at Lahore . He had everything but he lacked a brave heart to fight in the battle-field. He fled from the field and ultimately was captured through a Pathan who betrayed him. He was brought to Delhi and was executed.

Having made his position secure on the throne of Delhi , Aurangzeb embarked on his religious crusade against the Hindus. After Dara the enemies of the Guru got a chance to poison the mind of Aurangzeb that the Guru had rendered assistance to Dara against him. Upon this Aurangzeb summoned the Guru to his presence in Delhi . The Guru had vowed not to see the Emperor. Instead he sent his eldest son Ram Rai to Delhi instructing him to rely on the divine power of the Gurus, not in any way recede from the principles of his religion, and in all his words and actions to fix his thought on God, everything would prove successful.

When the Emperor was informed that the Guru had not come himself but sent his son, he thought that if his object in trying the Guru was not fulfilled by the Guru's son, he would send for the Guru himself. It is said that Ram Rai performed seventy miracles. T he Emperor sent him poisoned robes which he wore but was not hurt. In one interview a sheet of cloth was spread over a deep well so that Ram Rai when asked to sit, would fall into the well. The sheet did not give way and Ram Rai was miraculously preserved. The Emperor was shown the sight of Mecca while sitting in Delhi . After seventy such miracles were shown, Aurangzeb was almost convinced of Ram Rai's powers and became friendly to him. Then came the last question. The Qazis' asked Ram Rai, " Ram Rai, your Guru Nanak has written against the Muslim religion. In one place he had said,

'Mitti Musalman ki peirei paee kumiar; Ghar bhandei itan kia, jaldi karei pukar.'
Ram Rai had won Aurangzeb's respect so much that he perhaps did not want to displease him and forgot his father's parting injunctions not to recede from the principles of his religion. So in order to please the Emperor, Ram Rai replied, " Your Majesty, Guru Nanak wrote, 'Mitti beiman ki', that is the ashes of the faithless, not of the Musalmans, fall into the potter's clod. The text has been corrupted by ignorant persons and Your Majesty's religion and mine defamed. The faces of the faithless and not of the Musalmans, shall be blackened in both worlds." All the Mohammadan priests were pleased with this reply. The Emperor then conferred a mark of favor on Ram Rai and dissolved the assembly.

The Sikhs of Delhi immediately sent an envoy to Kiratpur and informed the Guru of the pomp and honor with which Ram Rai had been received in Delhi, and detailed miracles he had exhibited. The envoy then explained how he had made an alteration in a line of Guru Nanak in order to please the Emperor. The Guru was much distressed at the insult to Guru Nanak and remarked that no mortal could change the words of Guru Nanak and that 'the mouth which had dared to do so should never be seen by me.' The Guru decided that Ram Rai was not fit for Guruship. He confirmed, " The Guruship is like a tigress's milk which can only be contained in a golden cup. Only he who is ready to devote his life thereto is worthy of it."

After Ram Rai had resided in Delhi for some time, he decided to go to Kiratpur and try to convince his father to reverse his decision regarding him. He pitched his camp near Kiratpur and wrote to his father for permission to visit him. He confessed that he had suffered for his sins and desired forgiveness. The Guru replied, "Ram Rai, you have disobeyed my order and sinned. How can you aspire to become a holy man? Go whither your fancy leads you. I will never see you again on account of your infidelity?"

The Guru feeling his end approaching thought of his successor and called for a meeting of his Sikhs. He seated his younger son, Har Kishen who was only five years old, on Guru Nanak's throne. He then placed a coco-nut and five paise before him, circumambulated him three times and had a tilak or patch put on his forehead. The whole assembly then rose and did obeisance to the young Guru. Guru Har Rai enjoined all his Sikhs to consider Har Kishen as his image, to put faith in him, and they would obtain salvation.

Guru Har Rai closed his eyes and went to his heavenly abode on October 6, 1661 .