Sau Sakhee - Old English Translation "The Sakhee Book"
Sau Sakhee - Old English Translation "The Sakhee Book"

Sau Sakhee - Old English Translation "The Sakhee Book"

Regular price $15.50

Translated by Sardar Attar Singh

This is a a print-on-demand book of the 1873 Sakhee Book. 9 x 6, it a new soft cover book in excellent condition 203 pages.

The Sau Sakhees originate as stories told by Gurbaksh Singh about the day-to-day events in the court of Guru Gobind Singh Ji.  The story goes that Bhai Sahib Singh listened to them and wrote them down between 1724 and 1734 - originally being 5 books of 100 stories each. These precious stories are amazing, and I get lost in this book over and over again.  

But it has some problems!

Over time, groups with ulterior motives have used the Sau Sakhees to promote their cause and so many different versions exist.  One version that was circulated during the mutiny of 1857 prophesies an Anglo-Sikh victory over the Mughals; one version from the 1880s gives prophecies of Maharaja Duleep Singh coming back as victor in the Punjab; and this one from 1860 supports the claim of Ram Singh to be a reincarnation of Guru Gobind Singh and the future ruler of India.  So as you read this book, understand that this is subversion of the original text.

The other problem this book has is the translator.  Sardar Attar Singh, Chief of Bhadaur, was a shameless anglophile with a low opinion of the Sikh sangat.  No doubt a learned man proficient in Urdu, Persian, Punjabi, Sanskrit and English, he translated this and other books for the benefit of the English government in their attempt to contain the Sikhs.  For his loyalty and efforts he was given a knighthood in 1888.  Ok then - it is good to know who he is as you read the translation.

But still, this book amazes and inspires me.  Only 15 or so Sakhees seem suspect, and if you just dismiss those as polluted you can enjoy the rest of the book.  It is like being a fly on the blessed wall of the Guru's court - and I am forever grateful to have this translations!


PS - if you don't want the book, you can read it on the WAYBACKMACHINE for free: