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When all has been tried, yet
Justice is not in sight,
It is then right to pick up the sword,
It is then right to fight.

Written in exquisite persian verse, the Zafarnama was a defiant message composed by Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Sikh Guru, and addressed to the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb, following a series of fierce battles between the imperial forces and Sikh warriors. With wisdom and honesty, the Guru indicts the emperor for the moral and spiritual bankruptcy of his empire. These 111 stirring stanzas, which form the core of the Guru’s spiritual philosophy, highlight his deep understanding of the true nature of god and creation.

In this evocative translation, Navtej Sarna brings to life the valiant voice of Guru Gobind Singh and the power of his poetic genius in a passionate disavowal of tyranny that remains ever relevant.

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Guru Gobind Singh / history / Navtej Sarna / nonfiction / persian / poetry / religion / translation /