Jaap Sahib: Context & First Chhand

Jaap Sahib: Context & First Chhand
Illustration of Guru Gobind Singh Ji from the end pages of Darbari Rattan. Couplet below says: With the Decorated Horse 'Neelaa' [and] with a Hawk adorned upon His Hand. Let's go Singhs! Let us have Darshan, for Guru Gobind Singh Ji have come"

Jaap Sahib back-story/context (Uthhanakaa) translated from ‘Jaap Sahib Arth Prabodh’ by Sant Kartar Singh Nirmala:
One time, Satguru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaj was sitting upon a boulder at the banks of the Yamuna River, Paonta Sahib. Here Maharaj was meditating on Akaal Purakh. In the midst of this, a wave of Divine Love arose... at that time, Guru Sahib detailed and praised Vaheguru’s Niraakaar Saroop (Unmanifested Form) and then of the Saakaar Roop (Manifested Form). Following this, Maharaj recited a Stotra (Divine Ode) in the form of Namaskaar (bowing down/paying reverence). This recitation is what came to be known as the Gurbani: Jaap Sahib.
(Hopefully, one day we can translate selections of this 550+ page steek)

 Jaap Sahib is held close to the heart. Jaap Sahib is part of the Morning Nitnem and the First Gurbani in Sri Dasam Granth. Jaap Sahib is quite rich and meditative. If one were to reflect on the qualities described in Jaap Sahib, they would realize the essence of reality. There is a steek of Jaap Sahib called “Chakradhar Charitar Char Chandrika” written by Pandit Nihaal Singh Thakur. This steek is over 1200 pages!

 Bhai Veer Singh Ji have written an introductory-level steek in & seems like it was meant for the average Punjabi speaker to read. We are going to translate Bhai Veer Singh's Steek so that the average English reader can begin the journey into understanding their Nitnem. Bhai Veer Singh cannot be described in mere words. They wrote various types of Punjabi literature for the common people to engage with Sikhi. Synthesizing Sikh history, providing commentary on Gurbani, writing novels and poetry, and the list goes on. You can learn more about their literature from the Bhai Veer Singh Sahitya Sadan: http://www.bvsss.org/
 Daas has not added any additional commentary. The intention behind this attempt is to maintain the integrity of the steek as it was originally written. Daas added transliteration of the Gurbani as well. Please forgive any mistakes in translating and please suggest corrections!

ੴ ਸਤਿਗੁਰਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ
Ik Oang-kaar Sath[i]gur Prasaadh[i]
ਸ੍ਰੀ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕੀ ਫਤਹਿ ਹੈ
Sree Vaahiguroo Jee Kee Phathah[i] Hai

The Name of the Bani. It is commonly known as ‘Jaap[u] Jee’
In which there are praises and names for the Simran of Vaheguru.
ਸ੍ਰੀ ਮੁਖਵਾਕ ਪਾਤਿਸਾਹੀ ॥੧੦॥
Sree Mukhvaak Paath[i]saahee Dasvee[n]
Recited by Guru Gobind Singh Ji

ਛਪੈ ਛੰਦ ॥ ਤ੍ਵਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ ॥
Chhapai Chha[n]dh | Thwa Prasaadh[i]
The Name of the Chhand | With Your Kirpa (‘Your’ referring to Eshwar’s)

ਚੱਕ੍ਰ ਚਿਹਨ¹ ਅਰੁ ਬਰਨ ਜਾਤਿ ਅਰੁ ਪਾਤਿ ਨਹਿਨ ਜਿਹ ॥
Chakkr Chihan Ar[u] Baran Jaath[i] Ar[u] Paath[i] Nahin Jih
The One who does not go through cycles, does not have any signs/symbols, colours, categories/castes, nor community/way.
¹ 'Chihan Chakkr' pangkti means there are no costumes/looks, signs, nor traits [belonging to Vaheguru]

ਰੂਪ ਰੰਗ ਅਰੁ ਰੇਖ ਭੇਖ ਕੋਊ ਕਹਿ ਨ ਸਕਤਿ ਕਿਹ ॥
Roop Ra[ng] Ar[u] Raekh Bhaekh Ko-oo Kahi n Sakath[i] Kih
[Of] all colours, lines, clothes; no one can speak of what Vaheguru is like

ਅਚਲ ਮੂਰਤਿ ਅਨਭਉ ਪ੍ਰਕਾਸ ਅਮਿਤੋਜ ਕਹਿੱਜੈ ॥
Achal Moorath[i] Anbhao[u] Prakaas Amithoj Kahijai
The Unmoving Form [which] is Self-Existent
Referred to as The Light [of which] has Immeasurable Strength

ਕੋਟਿ ਇੰਦ੍ਰ¹ ਇੰਦ੍ਰਾਣਿ ਸਾਹਿ ਸਾਹਾਣਿ ਗਣਿਜੈ ॥
Kot[i] Ei[n]dhr Ei[n[dhraaN[i] Saah[i] SaahaaN[i] GaNijai
The Indra of Millions of indra’s [and...]
Counted as The Paatshaah of paatshaahs.
¹ Indra refers to someone with glory

ਤ੍ਰਿਭਵਣ¹ ਮਹੀਪ ² ਸੁਰ ਨਰ ਅਸੁਰ ਨੇਤ ਨੇਤ ਬਨ ਤ੍ਰਿਣ ਕਹਤ³
ThribhavaN Maheep Sur nar Asur Naeth Naeth Ban Thrin Kahath
The King [of] 3 Loks, [Which] Devte/Angels, Manukh/Humans, Raakhsh/Demons and trees [plants], grass [etc.] say that You are Neither This Nor That (Neti-Neti)
¹ Akaas: Sky/Heavenly realms, Prithhvee: Earth, Paathaal: Lower Realms/Hells
² The Sustainer of the Earth
³ Meaning: From heavenly angels to the blades of grass, everyone is saying that Parameshwar is Beant/Endless

ਤਵ ਸਰਬ ਨਾਮ ਕਥੈ ਕਵਨ ਕਰਮ ਨਾਮ ਬਰਨਤ ਸੁਮਤਿ ॥੧॥
Thav Sarab Naam Kathhai Kavan Karam Naam Barnath Sumath[i]
Who can understand [the Mystery/Secret] of All of Your Names?
The Names [related to Your] Actions have [been] created, [Now, I am] describing [Them], Oh Wisdom-Holder!

The next sections will either be one or multiple chhands grouped together to fit a reasonably lengthed read. Please signup for our email subscription for updates!
Forgive any mistakes Gurmukho! Bhai Vir Singh have written a great steek, all faults are mine in translation

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