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Guest Sardar Moderator Singh

Noor, u are better off reading works by Giani Gian Singh, Pandit Ganesha Singh, Pandit Narayan Singh Ji....they were accomplished scholars, with tremendous amount of knowledge, respect and spiritual awareness...as is evident in their work.

Dear Narsingha,

Gur Fateh Parvan Hove!

Since you have quoted and cited these very 'scholars' on your websites (shastarvidiya, sarabloh, sevapanthi) and in your numerous posts on this and other forums you consistently refer back to them effectively as your defining 'gospel', please could you kindly address the following matter.

Scholars such as Kavi Sainapati (text: Sri Guru Sobha), Kesar Singh Chibbar (Banasivalinama) together with the likes of Sarup Das Bhalla (Maima Parkash) are what we could describe as either Gur-Darbari Scholars/Poets and/or Jeevansaathis of Guru Gobind Singh.

Hence their sources are primary and contemporary to period which they narrate when compared to those that your websites appear to favour (namely Gyani Gyan Singh, Rattan Singh Bhangoo, Kavi Santokh Singh) all of whom, whilst respected and noteworthy scholars, have no direct relationship with Guru Sahib nor the Guru Ghar.

From reading your websites and attending associated lectures/classes over the past year, it is apparent that the vast majority of your sources and assertions are derived from secondary sources as such those referenced and appear to effectively by pass the first set of traditional texts mentioned above (re: Kavi Sainapati, Kesar Sing Chibber etc) who as indicated are the actual scholars of the Panth who had both contemporary lives and connection with the Guru Ghar and with Guru Sahib himself.

Where is the academic honesty and totality in the presentation of your arguments and proposition on the aforementioned sites when primary sources are ignored (or sparsely referenced) and secondary ones given the higher status? How does this differ from the Singh Sabhia literature which effectively does the same by rejecting or sparsely referencing the texts you refer to in the main and favouring British Authors such as Macaufille and Cunningham.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Regards,

SMS

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Firstly, the quotes utilised from these old texts are not 'gospel', but go some way in defining what occured in the past.

Secondly, there are many sections arriving soon that DO utilise these 'traditional' scholars...your pressumptions that we are being selective in what texts we utilise are premature.

Thirdly, it would be very easy to bring out another Sikh historical website that re-invents the wheel and simply re-writes the works of Macauliff, Harbans Singh, Giani Gian Singh, etc etc. However, we are Sanatan Sikhs, and quality is important, not quantity....nor are we in the arena to please any particular individual or group.

Now, lets get realistic.

The websites represent a SNAPSHOT of Sanatan Sikhism and associated traditions. Sanatan Sikhism too huge, too diverse, and too varied for any website or book to encapsulate entirely....for those who turn up to the lecture series, they will realise this for themselves. Its like asking you to put down every event that has occured in your life on paper....unless you can remember EVERYTHING (including crapping in your diaper as a kid, etc.), this is impossible.

What you are asking/requesting is highly unrealistic, and it also makes out that every other Sikh is too lazy to do their own research. If one were to do as you ask, this would mean:

a) translating/transcribing EVERY source of Sikh history - contemporary, traditional, modern, etc.

B) putting EVERY source online

c) ask everyone to READ these translations (by which time most people would be in a coma before they reach the 1st volume of Suraj Prakash Granth)

d) comparing each source in turn and compiling a reference text of similarites and differences

e) introducing oral tradition (from all 4 sampardas regarding EVERY concievable topic)

f) substantiating oral tradition with EVERY text available (on every topic covered)

...and this would then be available for people to then critise at their hearts content. In addition, this would take an army of "scholars", all of whom are versed in Punjabi, urdu, sanskrit, brij, latin, etc., not to mention knowledgable in Raags, Shastar Vidiya, Ayurveda, Raaj Vidiya, etc.

For those people who wish to discover more, they are free to do their OWN research....in fact almost every text referenced on the websites is available from Chattar Singh Jeevan Singh, Singh Brothers, DTF, Sikh Missionary, AKJ and Taksali bookstalls, etc.

The websites are being done by Nihang Niddar Singh and myself, and not by a vast army of Sanatan Sikhs, nor are websites funded by Lottery grants, government funding, or indeed money from sangat. It takes time to write, research and compile articles, gather quotes, transcripts and opinions of other Sanatan Sikhs, etc.

For those who are unhappy with what has been presented, perhaps you should do your own research and present your data online so that we too may see the product of your efforts. We saw on effort by the AKJ which was in defiance to the Shastar Vidiya website, and that included fablulous pictures of a doll dressed up as Akali Nihang Baba Santa Singh.

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Guest Sardar Moderator Singh

Dear Narsingha,

Gur Fateh Parvaan Hove!

Thank you for your response. Please be assured you that we are being entirely realistic for no where have we alluded for the need to re-write or re-invent the wheel, as you assert nor have we sought to promote quantity over quality –in fact, our asking the above questions relate entirely to quality!

If one is looking to present that which is ‘sanatan’ and that which brings forth what occurred in the past, surely it merits beginning from the start and hence using the earliest sources.

Veer Jee, we have made no presumptions, only an observations with relation to your websites, articles and presentations that have been around for well over a year, so it is not entirely accurate to suggest that our questions are premature, for it would appear that your presentation of information is delayed or mistimed that you have chosen to build up a picture of what occurred in the past using texts which themselves are not the ‘primary sources’.

Surely as any historian looking into such matters, be it for thorough analysis or a Snapshot, these primary sources would be the point from which to begin. It is not apparent why this basic question and reasoning needs to concern any particular group or individual, it is simply an objective statement concerning the content of your site and the work undertaken and can be (and for that matter has been elsewhere on this forum) applied to any other historical article or writeup.

Nonetheless, it is good to hear that “many” sections will be arriving “soon” that DO utilise these 'traditional' scholars.

As you have chosen to raise the matter of diversity and expanse, we are not oblivious of this notion and again, are not seeking a War and Peace on the matter, so it is surprising to find a very over reactive response on your part with regard to your closing statements:-

<<What you are asking/requesting is highly unrealistic, and it also makes out that every other Sikh is too lazy to do their own research. >>

As elucidated above, we are far from being unrealistic, we have simply asked why you have to date systematically given more reliance to non-primary texts. From this you have made the ‘presumption’ that we have not undertaken any of our own research (SMS note: For your information, I am personally presenting a short intro to the rest of the moderation team for a new thread which does look at these primary sources for verification of those found in the latter texts utilised in your websites).

<<If one were to do as you ask, this would mean:

a) translating/transcribing EVERY source of Sikh history - contemporary, traditional, modern, etc.

B) putting EVERY source online

c) ask everyone to READ these translations (by which time most people would be in a coma before they reach the 1st volume of Suraj Prakash Granth)

d) comparing each source in turn and compiling a reference text of similarites and differences

e) introducing oral tradition (from all 4 sampardas regarding EVERY concievable topic)

f) substantiating oral tradition with EVERY text available (on every topic covered)

...and this would then be available for people to then critise at their hearts content. In addition, this would take an army of "scholars", all of whom are versed in Punjabi, urdu, sanskrit, brij, latin, etc., not to mention knowledgable in Raags, Shastar Vidiya, Ayurveda, Raaj Vidiya, etc. >>

Again, Narsingha Veer, you have clearly read into our mere ‘questioning’ of your website as an attack, the tone of your response and your conclusions are clear for all to see. All that was asked was why more reliance is given to what has been termed (for the sake of convenience) in this thread as ‘primary’ sources.

A simple answer would ‘could’ have been “we are primarily Nihang Singhs and hence we obviously seek to present forth our oral traditions together with texts held close to the dal such as those by Shaheed Rattan Singh Bhangoo”, instead you have chosen to ridicule and then go on to compare our simple question with the likes of a few narrow minded individuals who were responsible for the creation of a childish website.

<<For those people who wish to discover more, they are free to do their OWN research....in fact almost every text referenced on the websites is available from Chattar Singh Jeevan Singh, Singh Brothers, DTF, Sikh Missionary, AKJ and Taksali bookstalls, etc. >>

Veer Jee, once agian, you are making presumptions here that we are not undertaking our own research be it with the referenced texts or others or even with contacts we may have in India from the Sampradhyas themselves!

<<The websites are being done by Nihang Niddar Singh and myself, and not by a vast army of Sanatan Sikhs, nor are websites funded by Lottery grants, government funding, or indeed money from sangat. It takes time to write, research and compile articles, gather quotes, transcripts and opinions of other Sanatan Sikhs, etc.>>

Noted and appreciated. Likewise for us and your comments regarding our research.

<<For those who are unhappy with what has been presented, perhaps you should do your own research and present your data online so that we too may see the product of your efforts. We saw on effort by the AKJ which was in defiance to the Shastar Vidiya website, and that included fablulous pictures of a doll dressed up as Akali Nihang Baba Santa Singh.>>

Veer Jee, it is sad to see you showing your desperation here through viewing our simple question regarding your “approach” to the research and presentation of information by ‘assuming’ we are (a) unhappy with your efforts –no where have we indicated as such and (B) we are somehow ‘challenging ‘you’ hence your offer to see the ‘product of our efforts’. Comparing us to a few narrow-minded individuals who happened to be from the AKJ and their childish website is nothing short of demonstrating your desperation to avoid even a simple questioning of your material, surely any historian, even Shastar Vidiya Gurdev Nihang Niddar Singh is happy to receive feedback and questioning.

Anyhow, let’s not allow this minor misunderstanding stand in the way of any otherwise insightful look into the Sanatan World according to the Buddha Dal UK representatives and hope we can continue to discuss such matters in a mature fashion going forward.

Kind regards,

SMS (on behalf of the SA Team).

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Gurdev Nihang Niddar Singh is happy to receive feedback and questioning.

He is much better when it comes to asking questions. His representative- Narsingha is not very freindly when it comes to asking questions. I ll say this bluntly because of the expereine I had with him before so this is not attack towards him but rather my expereince.

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Guest Sardar Moderator Singh

Beast,

By all means, this fair enough, however when someone openly states and challenges all and sundry on their websites and then refuses to debate and discuss matters openly when asked simple questions based on historical texts this is nothing to do with being 'unique' or even 'opinions' it was a simple question.

Yet at the same time, the same person is happy to accuse what they term to be 'modern day sikhs' as shying away or being aggresive when asked the questions presented on their website -what is the difference in behaviour?

For the record, I personally have spoken with Ustad Nihang Niddar Singh, whom as Neo points out is more than happy to have a sensible discussion without perceiving a intriguing question as a threat. He is truly approachable and willing to talk, of course, as with any good teacher, he will expect one to do their 'homework' as well.

Again, the shame here is that many of the Nihang-haters have not sought to discuss with Ustad Nihang Niddar Singh, but instead make assumptions and fast conclusions, showing their own insecurities and lack of knowledge.

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Not all Nihangs will give straight answers, not all answers given by Nihangs are straight. Everyone is different and will chose to approach a situation his/her unique way. N30Singh, try to put your personal issues aside - and your own atma may get further when you stop spreading rubbish about me to other people (if you want the evidence, you can have it).

Please remember that some prefer asking questions, some prefer giving answers....such is life. Some people chose NOT to answer for whatever reason they may have...it is called FREEDOM of choice.

For the record, ppl are free to comment and question on the websites, and we do take into account what people are saying. How we choose to respond to this is a different issue.

You must appreciate, we all have strategy....if the strategy were obvious, then it wouldn't be much of a strategy.

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Guest Sardar Moderator Singh

Narsingha Veer,

Thank you for your response and for clarifying your stance on life.

Please can all members remember this when you next fire questions to the AKJ, Taksal, Nihangs, Nirmalas or another group, for they will respond in a manner that is also Freedom of Choice for them and in many cases, display their 'mat' in the process.

Forum members are all also advised that when making points, please endeavour to keep them objective as possible and not involve personality issues in our arguments.

Regards,

SMS.

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Guest Sardar Moderator Singh

Narsingha Veer,

Thanks again for your kind repsonse and invitation. I have attended the 2 talks to date (and shall be there for the remaining two) and have spoken with Ustad Nihang Niddar Singh.

As you have addressed me personally, I shall respond as such. There is not a particular 'answer' I seek , simply the truth, just as you do accordingly to your sites and the closing slide on your presentations.

The question put forth earlier on are again only academic in that they seek to understand the line of thought/argument/conclusion put forth in your website/presentations.

As you have on a frequently offered invitations to all and sundry for a sensible debate on threads advertising this event, that is all that was asked here.

Essentially all that is being asked is please explain as I do not understand/cannot reconcile 'certain' parts of your proposition/account/conclusions with other sources which indicate to the contrary.

Anyhow, I look forward to meeting you again, perhaps this time we shall exchange more than just a Fateh when we meet.

See you on Monday!

SMS.

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