In Punjab, one can spot many men wearing a turban. Well, the turban is tied not for the sake of fashion, but because it has a lot of significance in the lives of Punjabis. The Pagari (Indian Turban) is a headdress of Sikh men which is tied manually. Dastar – another name for Turban, is mandatory for all Khalsa – (Sikhs) and is adorned by them. Prominently worn by men the Pagdi is quite famous among the Amritdhari – (Initiated) Sikh women and as such, they also need to wear it. It is a religious requirement of the Sikhs to never cut their hair and therefore to manage their long hair they wear the turban. Sometimes the ritual of Dastar Bandhi – (ceremonially tying of the first turban) is observed in the Golden Temple being performed by families for their young ones. There are several styles of Dastar tying like Patiala Shahi, Morni/Pochvi, Amritsar Shahi, Canadian style dastar and many more. In Punjabi dialect, Pagri is often shortened to Pagg.
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Pagri was initially tied to keep the head cool. It was actually a way to escape from the blazing heat of the sun. In ancient times, to escape the hot climate of the desert, this long piece of cloth was soaked in water overnight and then tied in the morning. The different folds and layers of the turban were thus used to provide great relief for the whole day. The major reason for wearing the turban is to show their love, obedience, and respect for the founder of Khalsa – Guru Gobind Singh Ji.
“Khalsa Mero Roop Hai Khaas.
Khalsa Mai ho Karo Nivas…”
—- The Khalsa is my image. Within the Khalsa, I reside. —-
This article of faith represents self-respect, courage, spirituality, and piety. It is believed that Guru Gobind Singh Ji – the 10th Guru created Khalsa in order to protect the weak and downtrodden and gave five articles of faith called the Panj Kakkar – (Five K’s) one of which is the unshorn hair and the dastar helps keep them tidy. So people who believe in Five K’s always wear a tidy Turban as a symbol of respect towards the same.
The turban is the one thing that identifies a Sikh more than any other symbol of their faith. An edict handed down by 10th Guru requires Sikhs not to cut their hair. People who decide to become fully baptized into the Sikh faith and stop cutting their hair began wearing a tall turban. Mostly we have seen women tying turbans are mostly Sikhs living outside of their traditional homeland of Punjab in India. This is something that the younger generation in the diaspora is doing. It’s a sign of religiosity in which some Sikh women are no longer content with just wearing a chunni (headscarf). They feel contented wearing a turban that clearly identifies them with being Sikh and so women now also want that clear sign of being a Sikh.
You need to follow some simple steps and you are done with your headdress.
“In this market, every head has a different fancy: everyone winds his turban in a different fashion.”
Here you are done with the tying of a perfect Patiala Shahi five-layered Pagri.
You may also learn to tie a turban in our Amritsar Village Tour, during your trip to the Holy city. Many youngsters sometimes avoid wearing a Turban. This is because as a beginner, they might feel some kind of pain initially but slowly once they become used to it, they wear it regularly. Because a true Sikh always believes:
“Je Takht Nahi, Je Taj Nahi tan King Nahi,
Je Kesh Nahi, Dastar Nahi tan Singh Nahi.”
—- As a King is incomplete without his throne and crown, similarly a true Singh or Sikh is also incomplete without his hair and Dastar. —-