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~~Thread dedicated to Sikh woman Parcharikhs/Sants ~~


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Basically i am compiling all previous post on sikh female saints/parchariks by members on sa, ss and other forums on here to list sikh female saints/parcharikhs in this thread, if someone has more information (pictures/sakhi/biographies etc) on the names below, please share it with the sangat:

another female sant I remember hearing about is 'mata ji', who headed dodra sangat after the passing of 'bhau ji'. I know very little about her, and would be interested in finding out more.

Theres a short sakhi in Pracheen Panth Parkash about a female saint described as a Santni who was based in Jalandhar and the wives of a king came to her to ask her to bless their hosehold with a son. This is going back to about the times of Baba Banda Singh Bahadur so appears to be a long standing tradition of female saints in the panth.

According to Sant Jagjit Singh JI, Bibi Balwant Kaur (Sultanpur and Bebe Nanki Gurd in Handworth) is also of a Sant padvi. Due to old age and ill health she is presently living with her children in Cardiff.

There are quite a few female Sadvis, Sants and Mahants among the Nirmalay presently. I was lucky enough to meet Svami Satpreet Hari while at the kumbh, and hear her pravachans while at a sammelan in Amritsar recently, also Mahant Gubaksh Kaur Ji too. Both are great vidvans of Gurmat and Vedant

Gurfateh my brother,

This is something I've become very interested in. There has never (and I imagine will never) been female Sevapanthis. That seems to be their way, with regards how they run their tikanas and the communal living aspect I guess.

The Nirmalas however seem to be quite different. Recently I was reading a copy of Nirmal Darshan, a periodical for Nirmalas, in which the attendees of a smagam included two female mahants. Leafing through 'Nirmal Panth Bodh' there are quite a few historical female sants. In the same way Nirmalay defeated caste-based arguments for discrimination earlier, I'd imagine the same atamdrishti arguments would be used for women also.

There are equally female Udasin sadhus, including one european sadhni who has a ashram in Rishikesh

Gyani Thakur Singh Ji from Damdami Taksal shares this amazing sakhi:

Once in ludhiana, there was gurmukh/mahapursh bhramgyani saint named- baba ban batta. Baba ji always used to hold an ban(arrow) and wear khadar cloth to cover up and all day used to wander around like mastna in the village .

In close by village, there was another female saint bhramgyani - named Chando. Chando also used to wander around naked in the village. Everyone respected her, they all knew she was very high elevated saint. When baba ban batta came in her village, saint chando quickly get a cloth from someone to cover herself and bow down(matha taiked) to baba ban batta. Upon this incident, one shopkeeper was suprised to see this incident and asked her, why you cover yourself only when he comes not other times you don't feel shy infront of us.

She replied in carefree tone, are you people even bandaie/males? you people are still istraie roop (wives) roop. Only baba ban batta is purkh(real mard/man) because he is bhram gyani. He did bhagti of that akaal purkh that akaal purkh attributes came in him. He also became purkh..

Gurfateh

I looked through that journal again and from two recent Nirmala smagams plucked out the names;

Srimati Mahant Bibi Chhotey Kaur Ji
Srimati Mahant Manjit Jaur Ji
Srimati Atma Jyoti Ji

There are others I know of attached to other Nirmala deras. What is interesting to note is that the first two have been given mahanti of a traditional dera. A good sign for things to come. I'll shall hopefully have darsan with these Santni Mahants in September.

also of individuals such as Mata Gulab Kaur, who Bhai Randhir Singh mentions in his autobiography as being quite a key influence in his early life.

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  • 3 weeks later...

This is an interesting thread, the problem we have is the view of women in Sikhi. Out of the Puratan Sampardas you will never get a female Sant in the Nihangs, Sewapanthis or Udasis because of their view towards women and Maya. The Sants are found in the Nirmala deras mostly. Modern day groups have done alot to try and readdress this balance with alot more women coming to the forefront

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This is an interesting thread, the problem we have is the view of women in Sikhi. Out of the Puratan Sampardas you will never get a female Sant in the Nihangs, Sewapanthis or Udasis because of their view towards women and Maya. The Sants are found in the Nirmala deras mostly. Modern day groups have done alot to try and readdress this balance with alot more women coming to the forefront

Brother, what do you mean in the bold above?

We're most likely to find a female sant (not that I like to put labels on these things but for the sake of clarity and discussion I will) as an independent, i.e. much in the way some politicians don't ally themselves with a particular political party, but still hold firm political beliefs and instead prefer to go out on their own as an independent candidate. Such a female sant won't have the profile of one of the big guys, but I don't think a bibi who follows that particular difficult path of spirituality will care for the so-called fame of mainstream recognition. Not that a male sant follows the sant life for celebrity, lol.

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In the old sampardas esp the sewapanthis and udasis no females are taken as students and taught any vidiya and for nihangs it is similar. in the nirmalas the women are treated the samae as the male jagiasoos and are taught everything, giving them the grounding to reach such a spiritual state whilst the udasis and sewapanthis will not allow any form of vidiya to be formally taught

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In the old sampardas esp the sewapanthis and udasis no females are taken as students and taught any vidiya and for nihangs it is similar. in the nirmalas the women are treated the samae as the male jagiasoos and are taught everything, giving them the grounding to reach such a spiritual state whilst the udasis and sewapanthis will not allow any form of vidiya to be formally taught

That's harsh. I guess they have their ways. A bit sad though.

Thanks for that.

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N30Singh Jee - Once again, a niche topic, excellent thread.

A very old topic comes back again and again to my mind - Why are women not allowed to do Kirtan at Sri Darbar Sahib Amritsar?

I think Shanti Kaur gave a good reply. Lack of backbone and clinging onto brahmanistical mindset that should have been done with after the Singh Sabha movement.

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I think Shanti Kaur gave a good reply. Lack of backbone and clinging onto brahmanistical mindset that should have been done with after the Singh Sabha movement.

I think, from the POV of the old-school guys, they would say "Where do we draw line when trying to change ways from the past?". It's easier to say "That's the way things were then, and that's how they'll stay". It does kinda undermine the assertion that Sikhi is about promoting fairness between the sexes, but I can also appreciate where they're coming from. Still doesn't make it right.

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I think that because our society is very male dominant, not many female sants are known to everyone. But I believe that there are probably just as many female sants as male sants. They are confined to social norms therefore not many people know of them. Punjabi mindset doesn't allow them to come foreword and do parchar.

Just my two cents on this.

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