Martyrdom of Guru Arjan

Guru Arjan, Martyrdom of

May-June; during the Sikh month of Jaith
Guru Arjan (1563-1606) was the fifth of the ten Sikh gurus and the first to be martyred. He became guru in 1581 and is known for many achievements—among them the building of the Golden Temple in the city of Amritsar and compiling the Adi Granth, the "First Collection" of Sikh sacred scripture.
Because Guru Arjan was a threat to his power, Jehangir, the emperor of the Mughal Empire, arrested him. Tradition has it that Arjun was tortured to death by being boiled alive while sitting on a burning hot plate. Although he accepted his death peacefully, Arjan left instructions for his successor, Har Gobind, to permit the Sikhs to take up arms to protect the innocent.
People commemorate Guru Arjan's martyrdom by visiting gurdwaras, places of worship, for special services. In India, where the weather is exceptionally hot at this time of year, it is traditional for Sikhs to make drinks available to every passerby—a reminder that part of Guru Arjan's torture before his death was being deprived of water.
SOURCES:
RelHolCal-2004, p. 204
SikhFest-1989, p.14
References in periodicals archive ?
After the martyrdom of Guru Arjan in 1606 Guru Hargobind decided to adopt martial measures for self defense.
Let us begin our discussion with a better understanding of what constituted an heroic death in the earliest Sikh literature since, in later Sikh tradition, the martyrdom of Guru Arjan, as well as every other Sikh martyrdom, is perceived as such.