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Nirgun Sargun Ik Hai†= the Formless and the forms Is One. This teaching is the basis for the perspective that all matter is holy and indeed, in a state-of-being conscious. Matter includes the solar systems, the earth, and us. For, “Water, wind, fire sing to You…Sing continents, worlds, and solar systems, which have been made and established.†(Sodar or That Gate, which appears in both morning and evening prayers).

For Sikhs, there is a cosmic symphony of Praise which is going on and the choice is simply whether to join in, improvising the Unstruck Melody, or jarring against it. “The sky is the plate, upon which are placed the sun and moon as lamps and stars as pearls. The fragrance of sandalwood is the incense, the winds the fan and all vegetation are the flowers. How can we perform Your Worship, Destroyer of Fears? The Unstruck Melody plays and the Word is the tender flute. Your eyes are thousands, but You have no eye. Your forms are thousands, but You have no form…Light is in all , this Light is One. This Light causes the radiance of enlightenment to arise in all.†(Sohila, bedtime prayer)

Since the Light is in all, Sikhs have no problem with the beliefs of indigenous peoples, which rather, are respected as different angles on the Truth. What is notable is the sharing of images and practises, for instance, the uncut hair of the native Americans and the kesh of the Sikhs. “Victory to the cauldron and the sword!†proclaimed the Druid-loving Gauls in ‘Asteriks’ comics. Degh Tegh Fateh!! is the Sikh slogan with precisely the same meaning. The double-edged sword, the Khanda, is used to stir the cauldron, the batta, while the Elixir of Life, Khande-de-Pahul, amrit, is trans-created and given to initiate new members in the Order of the Khalsa. “Behold this sword Excalibur, which rose form the lake of still meditation and was returned to it again. The Sword of Spirit, of light and truth, is always sharp and always with us, if our lake be stilled.†What Sikhs call the nectar-sweet amrit is what the Norse referred to as the mead of immortality, the drink of the One-harriers, those who realised the One. Then there is the reverence for “Mata Dharat Mahatâ€, the Great Earth Mother. Earth is to be respected as our common mother with all other forms. Taoism precisely expresses the belief of “sehajâ€; that Spontaneous Joy, which is called wu-wei. To be natural is to be allowing the Light of God to bask in your being.

Dr Kanwar Ranvir Singh


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