Message to 40 Singhs at Chamkaur - Guru Gobind Singh
While preparing at Chamkaur Sahib, Guru Gobind Singh had this message to his forty Singhs.
ਅਬਿ ਤੋ ਉਪਾਇ ਸਾਮ ਦਾਮ ਭੇਦ ਬਨੈ ਨਹਿ, ਚੌਥੇ ਦੰਡ ਬਨੈ ਦਲ ਲਾਖੋਂ ਚੜਿ ਆਯੋ ਹੈ ॥
"Now the strategies of Saam, Daam, Bhed [explained below], will not work; only the fourth, Dand is of use, as an army thousands of is mounted against us. ਗੀਦਰ ਕੀ ਮੌਤ ਨਹਿਂ ਮਰੋ ਰਿਪੁ ਹਾਥਨਿ ਤੇ, ਕਰੋ ਜੁੱਧ ਗਾਢੋ ਜਿਮ ਪੂਰਬ ਮਚਾਯੋ ਹੈ ॥ Dying like a jackal [coward] is not acceptable, but kill these enemies with your hands; like you have fought in the past, with [that same ferociousness] fight now!" Gurpratap Suraj Prakash, Rut 6, Chapter 35
These four strategies are outlined in numerous Indic texts, from Chanakya to the Mahabharata:
(1) Saam refers dealing with the opposing side in good terms, either working them in cooperation or friendly negotiating
(2) Daam refers to providing the opposing side with monetary or other goods in an effort to attain some benefit
(3) Bhed refers to splitting the opposing side through a variety of different means; supporting internal factions, creating confusion within their territory etc.
(4) Dand refers to the stick, meaning military posturing and action.