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Glossary of Punjabi Terms (A - C)

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Terms Meanings


Adi Granth 
Adi means first, Adi Granth is the first edition of the Guru Granth Sahib as was compiled by Guru Arjun in 1604.
Akal Purukh 
It means Timeless One, or The Being Beyond Time and is applied as a name of God.
Akhand Path 
An uniterupted continous reading of the Guru Granth Sahib. It is undertaken by a team of readers and takes approximately 48 hours.
It means nectar. It is sugar water which is used during the Khalsa initiation ceremony.
Amrit Bani 
A term applied to the Sikh Scriptures, meaning the words are as sweet as nectar (amrit).
Amrit Vaila 
The early morning hours of dawn. This is considered an auspicious time for meditation and prayer as stressed by Guru Nanak.
A Sikh who has undergone the Khalsa initiation ceremony.
The rite of initiation into the Khalsa brotherhood.
A state of bliss which defies description. It is also the name of a composition by Guru Amar Das found on pg. 917 of the Guru Granth Sahib.
Anand Karaj 
The Sikh wedding ceremony.
Anand Sahib 
Composition by Guru Amar Das found on page 917 of the Guru Granth Sahib. Parts of it are used in a number of Sikh ceremonies.
Anbhav Prakash 
The enlightened perception of reality which is enjoyed by a person who has become a gurmukh.
Antim Ardas 
The last of the Sikh funeral rites.
Wealth, it is acceptable to acquire wealth, but it should not become an end to itself.
Asa Di Var 
A collection of hymns meant to be sung at dawn.
The soul which is considered immortal.


Babur Bani 
References to the invasion of India by the Mughal emperor Babur found in the Guru Granth Sahib. God is said to have sent Babur as deaths messanger.
The celebration which takes place every April 13th. Guru Amardas initiated the annual gathering of Sikhs at Goindwal in 1567. In 1699 Guru Gobind Singh founded the Khalsa order on this day.
Compositions about the twelve months. By Guru Arjun in Raga Majh, by Guru Nanak in Raga Tukhari and by Guru Gobind Singh in Krishavtar.
An abbriviation of Gurbani, applied to any of the writings which appear in the Guru Granth Sahib.
An appeal for assistance made to Sikhs world wide.
Bhagat Bani 
Any of the writings which appear in the Guru Granth Sahib which were not written by the Gurus.
The ceremony marking the conclusion of a Path.
Bole So Nihal 
Part of the Sikh salutation meaning "anyone who speaks will be happy."
Buddha Dal
The 'army of veterans' formed by Nawab Kapur Singh in 1733 to look after Sikh holy places, preach and initiate new converts to the Khalsa order.


The canopy which is placed over the Guru Granth Sahib.
A poetical composition consisting of four lines in a specified meter.
Charan Pahul 
Baptism ceremony involving the drinking of water which the Guru or a member of the Gurus family had dipped their feet in.
A four line stanza form used by some of the Gurus.
Yak hair or manmade fiber embedded in a metal placed in a wooden handle. It is cerimonially waved over the Guru Granth Sahib as a symbol of respect.
A disciple of the guru, used in the Guru Granth Sahib to refer to Sikhs.
Clothing of the Gurus. Also applied to the coverings of the nishan sahib at a gurdwara
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