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help with pronounciation please!

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The bindis in the foot did not exist during the time of the guru's and don't appear anywhere in gurbanee. One veer mentioned that they existed during the time of Guru Gobind Singh Jee, but this is not true. The bindi's in the foot were developed later.

Why were they developed? Several reasons. But firstly, it should be made clear, that they were not developed by the British to write words like zebra. If they were, then could someone please explain what words the British needed a ^Z for. These are clearly not English sounds. They are Persian sounds.

Basically, what we sometimes forget is that our language is not completely phonetic. There are letters with multiple sounds. These sounds have always existed and are not British inventions. For example, the letters G J F D B all have two sounds associated with them. Some people try to use just one sound, but an linguist will tell you that there are two sounds. For example, in isMG and Gr, the G sounds different. Similarly, the B in


and pRB sound different and is generally pronounced differently by most patees (including sampardai pattees). The different sounds for these letters follow a simple pattern (if the letter is at the start of a word, it has one type of sound, if it appears anywhere else in the word, it usually has the second sound). Most of the words that these letters appear in are quite familiar to punjabees, and have been familiar to them for centuries, and there is no confusion.

With the sounds produced by the bindi letters, this is not the case. There is no simple rule and many of the words are foreign (usually Persian) and so, for many readers, it was difficult to tell when to make a sh sound or s sound (j or z, etc). For this reason, bindis were added, for ease of reading, especially when literacy began growing and many people unfamiliar with foreign based words began to read.

Recently, some people have begun placing a bindi in the foot of l to distinguish the two different sounds. The sounds have always existed (ie, jl - water, and jl - burning), but there was no symbol to differentiate the sounds. Just because some people have now started using a bindi to differentiate the sounds doesn't mean that it's a new sound.

Similarly, s K g j P, all had multiple sounds associated with them. For example, the word sharya (Islamic law) existed at the time of Guru Nanak Dev Jee and was undoubtedly pronounced with sh. The ru

lers of the time were Muslim and I'm pretty sure they knew how to pronounce their own words. I'm sure Guru Jee also knew how to pronounce their words and wouldn't have said sarya, unless someone can come up with a good reason explaining why the Guru's would do this. Especially since Gurbanee was directed at everyone, including Muslims, and so, what would be the point of mispronouncing their words and not being fully understood?

I sometimes find it confusing as to why some singhs get upset when somebody uses multiple sounds for s (shabad and sant) but not when they use multiple sounds for B (Bgq, pRB) or for X

Adhak is also another example of a symbol which doesn’t appear in Guru Granth Saahib Jee, but whose sound effect is often used. The sound effect associated with adhak has been around since the start of Gurmukhi, but the symbol was made much later, to help people read properly. I may be mistaken, but I think that most people, knowingly or unknowingly, use the sound effect associated with adhak when doing paat, regardless of whether the symbol is there or not. Similarly, we all use vishraams (pauses) when we do paat. I don’t know of any good pattee who doesn’t. However, there are no commas in Gurbanee; each tuk is written continuously. We could say that if Guru Jee wanted us to use vishrams, they would have used some symbol to indicate this, such as a comma.

In the end, we need to recognise that there are various schools of thought when it comes to gurbanee pronunciation. We should try understanding the possible reasons for the differences and l

earn whatever we can. There is no point in fighting over things like this. Everyone is trying to read Gurbanee as shud as they can and with as much prem as they can, which is the most important thing.

Another note: I'm pretty sure Sant Gurbachan Singh Jee was not in favour of pronouncing the sounds represented by the bindi letters. However, I'm pretty certain I read in their book that they did use bindis up top sometimes (the nasal sound) in places where it isn't written in gurbanee (although not very frequently). I believe (I don't have the book with me right now, so correct me if I'm wrong) that they advocated pronouncing a haha in the foot of some words, even though it may not appear in the written word. For example, in Japjee saahib, Teerth Nahvaa.... In fact where ever Nahva or nah (referring to bathing) appears, they place a haha. Navan (referring to Naam) is often spelt the same but Sant Jee says they are pronounced differently (unless I am remembering incorrectly. Please correct me if I'm wrong). They also used various methods for pronouncing yaeeya, as most people seem to.

Sorry for the long post, but I find this topic quite interesting.

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You mean there were no Tippi, sehari , bihari, tenka, unkar, dulenkar"?

Harmeet Singh Ji,

That's not what i said. I said that Pairi Bindian wale Akhar (the last ones in the modern Gurmukhi alphabet) didn't exist before 1850s.

What you mentioned are called 'laga matra', and they did exist. However, no adhak is found in Sri Guru Granth Sahib.

I just read r.singh's post, and it is useful information for anyone who reads. Good post Jio! ^_^

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By the way, about the original question...

From all the sources that I've checked, the pronunciation is closer to daee. Bhai Joginder Singh Talvara Jee writes that it is close to deI. I'm not sure why they pronounce it like this. Other similar words, like jX are NOT pronounced with a long ee sound in them, according to these same sources.

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