Gurpurabs

Calendar DateNanakshahi Event
05 January 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji
31 January 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Har Rai Ji
14 March 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Har Rai Ji
19 March 2020Jyoti Jyot Diwas Sri Guru Hargobind Ji
09 April 2020Janam Diwas Sahibzada Jujhar Singh Ji
14 April 2020Khalsa Sajana Diwas
16 April 2020Jyoti Jyot Sri Guru Angad Dev Ji
16 April 2020Jyoti Jyot Sri Guru Harkrishan Ji
16 April 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Amardas Ji
16 April 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji
18 April 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Angad Dev Ji
18 April 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji
02 May 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji
23 May 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Amardas Ji
11 June 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Hargobind Ji
16 June 2020Shaheedi Diwas Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji
05 July 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Hargobind Ji
23 July 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Harkrishan Ji
01 September 2020Pehla Prakash Purab Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
16 September 2020Jyoti Jyot Diwas Sri Guru Amardas Ji
16 September 2020Jyoti Jyot Diwas Sri Guru Ramdas Ji
16 September 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji
16 September 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Ramdas Ji
22 September 2020Jyoti Jyot Diwas Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji
9 October 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Ramdas Ji
20 October 2020Jyoti Jyot Diwas Sri Guru Har Rai Ji
20 October 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Harkrishan Ji
20 October 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
21 October 2020Jyoti Jyot Diwas Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji
24 November 2020Shaheedi Diwas Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji
24 November 2020Gurgaddi Diwas Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji
30 November 2020Prakash Purab Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji
21 December 2020Shaheedi Diwas Sahibzada Ajit Singh Ji, Sahibzada Jujhar Singh Ji and Jung de Samooh Shaheed
26 December 2020Shaheedi Diwas Sahibzada Zorawar Singh Ji, Sahibzada Fateh Singh Ji and Mata Gujri Ji

Historical Information

Until the 13th of March, 1998, the Sikhs used a lunar calendar to determine their feast days. From 1998 until 2013, Sikhs have used their own Nanakshahi calendar which started on 14 March 1999 Gregorian (1 Chet, year 531 Nanakshahi ) and aligns with the Gregorian calendar as follows. The era (1 Chet 1 Nanakshahi) is the date of the birth of the 1st Guru, Nanak Dev, in the Punjab in 1469. Although there is an obvious relationship with the Hindu Solar Calendar, the Sikh Organisation states that these dates are fixed relative to the Gregorian Calendar. The calendar issue came back into question in 2013.

The Nanakshahi calendar is used for all the Gurupurabs (festivals marking events in the lives of the Gurus) except the birthday of Guru Nanak which continues to be celebrated according to the Hindu Lunar calendar on Katik Poornamashi. Events such as Maghi and Hola Mohalla continue to be celebrated according to the relevant calendars. Some Gurupurabs are considered more significant that others. These are the ones that commonly appear as holidays.

Gurpurabs mark the culmination of Prabhat Pheris, the early morning religious procession which goes around the localities singing shabads (hymns). These pheris generally start three weeks before the festival. Devotees offer sweets and tea when the procession passes their homes. The celebrations start with the three-day akhand path, in which the Guru Granth Sahib (the holy book of the Sikhs) is read continuously from beginning to end without a break. The conclusion of the reading coincides with the day of the festival. The Granth Sahib is also carried in procession on a float decorated with flowers throughout the village or city. Five armed guards, who represent the Panj Pyares, head the procession carrying Nishan Sahibs (the Sikh flag). Local bands play religious music and marching schoolchildren form a special part of the procession. Free sweets and langar (community lunches) are also offered to everyone irrespective of religious faith. Local volunteers serve it with a spirit of seva (service) and bhakti (devotion). Sikhs visit gurdwaras (Sikh temples) where special programmes are arranged and kirtans (religious songs) sung. Houses and gurdwaras are lit up to add to the festivities.