Friends, you may have heard of Guru Nanakji, the first Guru of the Sikhs. One day, Guru Nanakji called his disciple and asked him to build a platform. The disciple obeyed his Guru’s command and built a platform.
Guru Nanak saw the platform and ordered his disciple to demolish that platform. In this way, Guru Nanak asked his disciple to build and demolish the platform over and over again. His disciple also diligently built and demolished the platform again and again according to the Guru’s orders. When Guru Nanak’s son saw this, he got very angry.
His son asked the disciple, “My father is repeatedly getting the platform built and is also asking you to demolish it. Are you not getting angry?” The disciple replied, “What do I have to do with the platform. I am following Gurudev’s order, and to follow Gurudev’s order is my sadhana”. Guru Nanak Devji’s eldest son’s name was Srichand.
One day Guru Nanak Devji called him and said, “Son, Srichand, today I have not been able to clean the cowshed as I was engaged in seva. Just do this much seva!” Srichand had just bathed a while ago and was wearing clean clothes. Srichand thought, “If I clean the cowshed, my clothes will become dirty and I will have to bathe again”.
Therefore he wanted to avoid cleaning. He said, “Father, I have to go to the temple. One should go there thoroughly clean, shouldn’t he!” and promptly left. Then, the Guru called Lehna, his disciple, and asked him to clean the cowshed. His disciple had also taken a bath a while ago, but in order to obey Guru’s orders he immediately went to clean the cowshed. After cleaning the cowshed he bathed again and went to the temple.
The very next day there was a big Sikh convention. In that convention, Guru Nanak Devji changed Lehna’s name to Angad Dev and declared that he would be the successor to the Guru’s throne. All the other disciples were surprised at this. The disciples asked, “Gurusaheb, why did you make Lehna the successor instead of your eldest son? Will this not break your tradition?”.
Then Guru Nanak Dev said, “I did so since Lehna, that is Angad Dev, is more qualified for the post of successor than Srichand. Just because he would have to bathe again Srichand avoided cleaning the cowshed. One who avoids cleaning the cowshed can never purify the society. That is why Angad Dev is worthy of the society and is also eligible to become my successor”. Then Guru Nanak Devji made Angad Dev sit on the throne.
Friends, Angad Dev used to obey the command of his Guru immediately. Hence Guru Nanak Devji made him his successor. From this, we learn that selfless obedience is worthy conduct.