Gursikhs from the Past

Bebe Nanaki Ji

Bebe Nanaki ji was elder sister of Guru Nanak and the daughter of Kalian Chand (Baba Kalu) and Mata Tripta was born in 1464 in her mother's home at village of Chahal now in Lahore district of Pakistan Punjab. The Guru's love for his sister is referred to in most touching terms in some of the Sakhis. A sister's love for her brother is a perennial theme of Punjabi folklore. There are many stories of Nanaki's deep and devoted affection for her brother Nanak.

Five years older then Guru Nanak, she was the first to recognise his spiritual eminence and to become his devotee. She protected Nanak from their father's wrath when repeatedly he disappointed and angered him. She was with him throughout the early years of his childhood. When Guru Nanak Dev was only Six years old in 1475 Nanaki was married to Jai Ram a revenue official of very good reputation at Sultanpur which is in the present native state of Kapurthala and was then the capital of the Jalandhar Doab. Nanak continued to live at home. He rebelled against any norms that were imposed without reason. He loved to be in the company of saints who were The wise men of the day and gave money away to the poor and the hungry. His father despaired of never being able to make him behave and take on a respectable position in the village. And so it was that his father gave up and so at the age of fifteen Nanak was sent to live with his sister and to work for her husband. It was Jai Ram who arranged the wedding of Nanak to Sulakhani daughter of Moolchand Chand Khatri and Mata Chando of the village Pakhoke District Gurdaspur. Herself Childless Bebe Nanaki adored her brother Nanak and felt herself blessed when he came to join the Nawab's service and put up with her at Sultanpur.

She arranged Guru Nanak's marriage and she loved his sons Sri Chand and Lakhmi das as her own. Guru Nanak reciprocated her affection and after he had quit the Nawab's service to go out to preach his message he did not fail to visit Sultanpur and meet his sister between whiles. Once as he visited her in 1518 Bebe Nanaki seeing her end near detained him a short while. As she had wished she departed this life in the presence of her brother- Guru Nanak Dev ji. Three days later her husband Jai Ram also expired. Guru Nanak himself performed their obsequies. There is no doubt that perhaps first Gur Sikh was none other than Bebe Nanaki and second Gursikh was Mata Sullakhni ji Guru Nanak Dev's Wife.

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