From Lehna to Angad : Guru Angad Dev Ji

It was during this visit that Guru Nanak addressed him, and said, “Between thee and me there is no difference… Thou art verily ‘Angad’ — a part or ang of my body. I congratulate thee.”

Saying this the Guru embraced him, and took him to Kartarpur. Another reason which can be attributed for the name ‘Angad’ is perhaps the Angad of Ramayan, who was a trusted follower and devotee of Lord Rama.

Nanak had declared that at his death his soul would migrate into the body of Angad.

Although the Guru was well aware of

Angad’ s worth and devotion, he used to take regular trials of his devotion mainly to convince his sons and followers that Angad alone was worthy of succeeding him.

Anecdotes of his trials abound. The Guru tested his obeisance in everyday life.

For instance, one day when the Guru was washing his hair, the cup he used slipped from his hand and fell into a deep sink. The Guru asked his sons to bring it to him quickly.

They replied that the sink was deep and full of dirty water, but they would ask a servant to get it. Upon this, the Guru asked Angad to get him his cup. It is believed that when Angad put his hands in the water, the cup rose to the surface on its own. It is then that Guru Nanak is supposed to have told his wife, “Sri Chand and Lakshmi Das are thy sons; Lehna, who obeys me, is my son.”

Every morning, Guru Nanak used to go to the river Ravi for his bath. Lehna would go with him and guard his clothes, while the Guru took his bath. It so happened that on one chilly winter morning three other disciples, who were seeking Guru Nanak’ s favour, also accompanied them to the river.

While the Guru was bathing there was a hail storm, and unable to bear the chill the three disciples returned home. Lehna waited for the Guru to step out of the river. When the Guru asked him why he had continued to stay while the other three had gone home, Lehna humbly replied, “A servant must never desert his master. So how could I do that?”

Such instances assured Guru Nanak more and more, that no one but Angad deserved to be the new Guru. He knew that only his devotee could carry his light forward by becoming the spiritual leader of the Sikh community. Angad had the necessary

qualities of humility, devotion, sacrifice and service. Guru Nanak was really pleased that Angad lived as per his teachings and that he believed so strongly in the Sikh principles of oneness of God and brotherhood. He also wanted to humble the pride of his sons and other xnen who scoffed at his choice.

One day, Guru Nanak and his devotees were walking. They came across something that looked like a corpse wrapped up in a cloth. The Guru then turned to his Sikhs, and asked, “Who is prepared to eat this.”

All those present were shocked at this suggestion and their faces expressed utmost disgust. At this point Angad came forward and asked his Guru’s permission to eat it . When Guru Nanak nodded, Angad stepped forward and without any hesitation bent down. But when he lifted the cloth he was pleasantly surprised to see that under it was nothing but sacred food. All the Sikhs were equally surprised and his sons kept wishing that they had agreed to carry out their father’s orders. Angad, on the other hand, seeing the sacred food before him, picked up the tray and offered it, first to the Guru, and then to the assembly of Sikhs. And after they had all eaten, he sat down to eat the left overs. Seeing this, Guru Nanak was most touched. He could not wait any longer to announce that he had chosen Angad as the next Guru.

He then turned to Angad, and said that he was blessed with the sacred food only because he had the quality of sharing good things with others. He then told his Sikhs that if all the wealthy people used their wealth for themselves alone, it was like a corpse; if they decided to share it with others, then it became sacred food. He than embraced Angad before everyone present and told his devotee that he alone knew the secret of sharing.

Now, everyone knew that Angad was

chosen as the new Guru of the Sikhs. They were all happy since they loved and admired Angad too. Only the day of anointing was to be decided. Everyone except the Guru’s two sons were happy at the choice of Angad being the next Guru.