Offering Water


Offering Water

Offering Water

Haridwar was and still is a great pilgrimage centre. This is said to be the place before the door of the Lord. Lakhs of Hindus gather there. During the Pitripaksba (fortnight of forefathers), devout Hindus perform Tarpan and offer water' to their ancestors.

Guru Nanak reached Haridwar during this particular fortnight. In the morning he went to take bath in the holy river Ganga. A large gathering of Hindus was present. They were taking ritual bath and then offering water to their ancestors. They were facing the sun, taking water with folded palms, raising it towards the sun and slowly pouring this into the river. The same action was being repeated again and again.

This was a wonderful sight for Guru Nanak. He enquired about this and was advised that Hindus were offering water to their ancestors. Nanak thought this to be a foolish act.

He bathed. Then, turning towards the west he began throwing water. People were amazed to see a man throwing water in the wrong direction. Some tried to teach the correct procedure of Tarpan. Heedless, Nanak kept throwing water towards the west. A crowd gathered around him. His magnetic personality assured them that he was not a mad man. Then why was he doing this?

Some of them repeatedly asked the same question. Nanak replied, "I have a farm in Punjab which is very dry. I am sending water there to irrigate it."

People laughed at him. "How can the water from Haridwar go to Punjab?"

Now, Nanak stopped throwing water. Addressing the people around him he said loudly, "If your water can reach ancestors in the region of the sun, why can't mine reach my fields which are just a short distance away."


The Hindus realised their folly and fell at the Guru's feet. For many hours, he then taught them what to do and what not to do. 

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