Guru Nanak appeared in India in one of the darkest periods of its history when the human scene was full of religious strife of the darkest kind, supported by long-entrenched superstitions and selfish and rapacious priest-craft. To this malady was added the existence of the rule of invaders from abroad, who were an army of occupation determined to rule over the natives with every weapon in the armoury of terror, to which the spur of the zeal for religious persecution was added. In this situation Guru Nanak sought light, with his soul in deep agony at the affiliations of Indian humanity from God, the creator. The light came to him, as he was the God appointed man sent to guide mankind.
According to Guru Nanak, true religion is falling in love with God. Therein lies man�s sole safety, real friendship, only consolation and the ultimate way to redemption and salvation. He preached religion of compassion, understanding, love and sacrifice, universal brotherhood, tolerance, respect for all religions and the dignity of man the watchword of his teaching. The world needs to understand and practice it if man really values a civilised, cultured and spiritual existence, else we shall head for a complete annihilation. His message has become increasingly relevant in the present day world of turmoil, conflict and hatred where men for mere materialistic gains is ready to cut the throat of their own kith and kin. Mere formalism and ceremonialism which is the practice of the day should be replaced by the essence of the truth that had inspired the ceremonies. This would be the best tribute to our guru, at the same time it will save humanity from the �grave� that surrounds it.
(Published on the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti today)