Bhai Gurdas - The Great Sikh Theologion; His Life and Work
Edited By: Gurnek Singh, Translated by Dr. Surinder Singh Kohli Printed in 2007, this is a first edition book printed by Punjabi University in Patiala. It is a new hard cover book with some dusty shelf-wear. Size: 9" x 6" 311 pages. Only 250 copies of this book were printed, and it is now rare and hard to find.
From the Forward by Swarn Singh Boparal: "Bhai Gurdas was one of the prominent Sikh personalities, who contributed massively to the interpretation and dissemination of the message of Gurbani. He was contemporary of Guru Arjan Dev, the fifth Nanak and worked as an amanuensis of Guru Granth Sahib. He was well-versed in the Vedic and Islamic tradition. He became proficient in the contemporary languages particularly Punjabi, Hindi, Sanskrit, Braj and Persian. He was eminent Scholar of the times. He mastered the Gurbani message and transmitted it both through his preaching tours of the different parts of the country and also by writing it down. His major compositions are Varan and Kabitt Savaiyyes. The later are in Braj Bhasha and therefore a bit difficult to comprehend both on the literary as well as doctrinal level. The Varan is his basic composition which carries in it the message of Gurbani. He has taken up various topics of Gurbani in his works such as god, Man, Nature, Gurmukh, Manmukh, Nadar, the Sikh way of Life, Practical aspect of Gurbani, the human responsibility towards other fellow beings and the prominent contemporary Sikhs of the different Gurus.He discusses about the Vedic philosophy, Upanishdic doctrine and six systems of Indian Philosophy but he by alluding these texts, projects the philosophy of the Sikh Gurus. He explains it in detail in his Varan. And also establishes its view point among the contemporary Indian Vedic as well as non Vedic that is , Islamic religious traditions. He endeavours hard to put forth and project the Sikh doctrine in the Indian religious tradition to make it explicit that the message enshrined in Sri Guru Granth Sahib is unique and thus infallible. Thus there was the dire need of its transmission to the people across the country. To this end he worked very hard to convey this message to the people both in literary from as well as by visiting various places. He preached upto Varanasi then centre of Hindu religion. There also he established the spiritual as well as social message of Gurbani and got convinced the Brahmins who turned towards the teachings of Gurbani. The Raja of Varanasi was greatly influenced by his preaching. It was a great contribution made to Sikhism so far as its spread is concerned.
This lovely book contains a short but good essay on Bhai Gurdas' life, and then a thoughtful English translation of Varan Bhai Gurdas.