Piri System

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Each Piri is a Sikh missionary seat, founded by 3rd Sikh Guru Amar Das ji and significantly expanded by 7th Sikh Guru Har Rai, for teaching Sikh religion to women, training and maintaining saint-soldiers . A similar Manji system is for the spread of Sikhism among men.

Meaning of Piri[edit]

A Piri is a very small wooden cot (taken as the seat of authority in this context) from which the Sikh Piris (female Sikh preachers, holders of seat of religious authority) would teach Sikhism to other women. The word Manji also means a wooden cot, similarly used to denote seat of sikh religious authority for preaching Sikhism to men.

Founding of Pirii system by Guru Amar Das[edit]

Guru Amar Das started the Piri and Manji systems by appointing 94 men as Manji and 52 women as Piris for the spread of Sikhism.[1]

Old Masand system[edit]

Sikh Gurus had Masand system of Sikh representatives who taught and spread the teachings of the Sikh Gurus and also collect monetary offering to maintain armed legion of saint-soldier. Over time, this system became corrupted.

Spread of Piri system by Guru Har Rai Ji[edit]

Guru Har Rai Ji faced some serious difficulties during the period of his guruship. The corrupt Masands, Dhir Mal and Minas always tried to preclude the advancement of the Sikh religion.

Earlier, Piri system was founded by Guru Amar Das ji. To reform the corrupted Masand system, Guru Har Rai Ji expanded the Piri system by establishing additional Female Sikh 'missionary' seats called Piris after the small cot (manji) used by the Guru's representatives. He also tried to improve the old corrupt Masand system and appointed pious and committed personalities, such as Suthre Shah, Sahiba, Sangtia, Mian Sahib, Bhagat Bhagwan, Bhagat Mal and Jeet Mal Bhagat (also known as Bairagi), as the heads of Manjis.[1]

See also[edit]