Guru Tegh Bahadur was the ninth of the ten Gurus of the religion of Sikhism. The youngest of the five sons of the sixth Sikh guru, Guru Hargobind, he was trained in the martial arts of swordsmanship and horse riding from a young age. He also received religious training from Baba Buddha and Bhai Gurdas. He grew up to be a brave young man and accompanied his father and other Sikhs in their battles and displayed bravery in the wars against the Mughal forces. However, after one particularly bloody battle in 1634 at Kartarpur, he turned to the path of renunciation and meditation. Meanwhile his father selected Har Rai, his grandson as his natural successor, who became the seventh guru of the Sikhs. Har Rai himself was succeeded by his son Har Krishan. In March 1664 Guru Har Krishan contracted smallpox and just before his death he informed the followers that his successor would be found in Bakala. Following some mystical events Tegh Bahadur was recognized as the successor and appointed the Sikh guru. As the guru he toured various parts of India and composed several hymns. He believed in religious freedom for all, and this brought him in conflict with Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb who ordered that the guru be brutally executed.
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