Jump to content

hair: help please


iced-cream
 Share

Recommended Posts

I am looking for some advice but I wont ask any particular question for which an answer I expect you to provide. Please have a read and give me your thoughts, I dont mind what you say, but I encourage you to share them without hesitating.

Firstly I will tell you a little about myself and my problems. When I was a teenager I became caught up in all this religious fervour and committed myself for a life of righteous living. It is something I scarcely share the same enthusiasm for these days. Then I had decided, quite passionately, that I wanted to be a "proper" sikh, with all that entailed. I plunged myself heart first into the mystical world of Sikhi. As one can imagine, the romanticism did not last long and now I am left at cross-roads.

Unashamedly like every single human being to have ever lived, I had been looking for a "fix" for my life. And i thought religion was the way to do it. Well religion can give you many things - it can give your life meaning, it can give you friendship, community - it can even give you happiness and euphoria. All these things I attained in various degrees through my religious experiences.

But (personal) religion never improved my character, it did not make me stronger or give me any useful wisdom. It did not add to the moral framework I had adopted from my parents, nor did it solve any of my problems. In fact it only added to them because to a dreamer like me, so-called enlightment is only a prescription for greater dreaminess - going further away from reality - and becoming skeptical of, and growing distant from, worldy affairs.

In fact what I had needed all along was not greater solitude - I needed far less. I needed to immerse myself in the real world and be more worldy. I have done this now, and seen how it has given my life meaning. I have a purpose now: to earn an honest living - to provide for my family - to become successful in my career. To be in contact with many people and actively socialise with many others. Further to achieve these ends does not require me to be particularly religious, nor do i think it is even a requirement at all.

Religion, now, is actually in my way from achieving those things. When i walk into an interview, I am immediately conscious of looking strange with my beard. You try to cut a clean professional image - but it doesnt help to have all that facial hair. I have brothers who are clean shaven and they look so crisp and fresh, and I simply do not. I actually havent got much of a problem with my self image - but i am aware that others might, and that itself is the problem.

Further my experience with girls is such that I am aware that few of them are willing to consider a kesh-dhari for a mate. It is usually an unsaid thing, and only one of these girls has been obnoxious enough to admit it forthright, but it is evident that it a turnoff to most girls - sikh girls included. I am nearing marriage and I realise my options have been limited greatly already.

This shouldnt be a problem. There are singhs out there who manage to lead rich fulfilled lives despite all the discrimination. I applaud them and once aspired to be such a person. But my situation is unique. I can imagine another sikh in my place dealing with others with humour, confidence and comfort. I simply cannot do this - and if try - well it is too obvious that i am trying and it becomes awkward for not only myself, but to the other person.

I have a cousin who has a great personality and trims his beard despite wearing a turban. I think he made the right decision. He still gets to be a singh but doesnt have the rest of the problems that I have. He is lucky and I think he got it right, while i got it wrong. I realise I have just outlined a standard problem with no expectation of a novel solution, but that is it - please share your thoughts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm not sure what you want help with.

It's pretty much a given that SIkhi saroop will grate with the mainstream society, it has *always* been like that, it's nothing new.

I don't want this to be an overly critical or mean post, but if your character didn't improve I can only assume that you didn't read/understand Gurbani; also Sikhi aims to 'wake you up' not send you into a deeper sleep, the point is to wake up to the reality around you and not be affected by it, not to isolate yourself form it.

You speak of Sikhism as a requirement to an end, a tool; I see it as a lifestyle dedicated to God and His bhagti, with worldly things being necessary but ultimately unimportant (in a Raja Janak kind of way) and something you should happily be willing to die for rather than give it up (thats the aim anyway).

You speak of Sikhism as a physical thing ("religion gets in your way") - the physical aspect of Sikhism is a uniform, and isn't what being a Sikh is all about

you must do what keeps your conscience clear, but I dont think you understand what Sikhi is at all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I personally believe , that following any religion whole heartedly is a good thing , you must have FAITH. ( This is the key having FAITH , plugging along through good and bad times , always remembering waheguru)

Religion is not a quick fix , and if i understand your comments , you wanted a quick fix , it isnt , religion is for life

japji sahib ( http://www.sikhnet.com/sggs/translation/0004.html)

kir kir krxw iliK lY jwhu ] (4-13, jpu, mÚ 1)

kar kar karnaa likh lai jaahu.

actions repeated, over and over again, are engraved on the soul.

I also believe there are not many proper sikhs around , we pick and choose what our guru teaches us , and have that "doubt/question" in mind when practicing our Gurus teachings.

Not all are blessed with the Nam ( religion) are the ones who are the lucky ones. Religion is not at fault when it comes to clean shaven, jobs , girls etc.. it is us humans who have created this environment and assume everyone should follow this realm , we live in a materialistic world , and throughout our lives are after a life , where we have money, nice cars, nice house , going out etc.. but in fact I believe we are forgetting the utmost truth and that is waherguru.

I dont believe you got it wrong , but you wanted results immediately , you should have been persisitent and still can be , as Bhai Ranjit Singh Dhadrian walla said , if you want to know about sikhi , who are you going to follow? which literature are you going to read ? etc..

He said the the history of the Gurus , read the history of the saints who have become one with good i.e. Sant Baba Isher Singh Ji, Sant baba Nand Singh Ji, just to name a couple.

These are just a few thoughts ,

( kema Dha Jachak heh )

Sikhi is a way of life , and should be adopoted throughout your normal rotuine , remember waheguru , whilst you work, while you eat , while you walk etc.., and it should not stop you or be barrier.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's pretty much a given that SIkhi saroop will grate with the mainstream society, it has *always* been like that, it's nothing new.

I have no prentensions about what I am - i am hardly significant in the scheme of things. As such, if i lived in a time or place where such pressures were not apparent the way they are now, then that would be quite satisfactory for me. A small contribution to society is all I can realistically hope to make. I am aware that in the past Sikhs had to suffer much greater consequences than most of us go through now. I understand this fully - and still think there is a big difference between being part of a unified community (in the sense of fashions and common practices) and being exposed to danger for belonging to it - and - being part of a disjointed community where the pressures on any one ordinary member are such that the pressure itself is against the stated ideals of that community. Simply, i am happy to be a sheep (in the sense of following the community) even at peril - rather than being a lion and being quite alone while doing so. I am community oriented - and see my immediate purpose to serve mine as best as I can. The pursuit of spirituality and such like do not concern me, and quite honestly, I see them as indulgent. We cannot build any useful community without hard work, diligence, commitment and indeed knowledge of the real world. Speculation of extranatural matters is not constructive but it can still give us intellectual pleasure. You cant build a city on faith alone, but it is has some merits that each one of us can recognise.

My view is that the role models I have adopted manage to do things the Right way. They blend successful honest livings with regular breaks for religion. They treat religion quite seriously - and especially so when they have the leisure to do so. They are not obsessed with religion: but treat it as an essential and integral part of good living. They are world-oriented and have the rich wisdom gained from worldly living: their experience is deep and multi-faceted. Something that could not have been achieved by taking too seriously that spiritual stuff - as that would invariably neglect the real.

something you should happily be willing to die for rather than give it up (thats the aim anyway).

Even considering this seriously seems absurd - but i once made claim to do just that. I believed it too. More and more, I believe the proper role of religion is to take a worldly person and try to jolt him into being a little less worldy - or a bit more conscious about the Big Picture - but it can never succeed in taking a person who is not worldy and making him worldy. It cant succeed in benefiting a person who doesnt know the ways of life: how to deal with people, how to get what you want, etc. Religion will only make things worse for him - because it will tell him "those things dont matter anyway.." .. "what matters is inner happiness" or something equally vague and useless.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I also believe there are not many proper sikhs around , we pick and choose what our guru teaches us , and have that "doubt/question" in mind when practicing our Gurus teachings.

People like you would say there are almost none. This makes such people feel good about themselves because they think they can aspire to be Proper Sikhs. I used to feel this way too but luckily I grew up and shed this childish attitude. It is a recipe for big-headeness and a heavy superiority complex that cannot help anyone. The doubt you mention is convenient: It gives our egos free reign to dream. This i found to be harmful: day dreaming is a vice - not a virtue.

"Not all are blessed with the Nam ( religion) are the ones who are the lucky ones."

Yes i know you believe this. That there are lucky people who potentially and truly are religious. This is not useful. That such people exist has no bearing on my life, nor on yours. That some spiritual savant exists somewhere will have no effect on my life, unless i take that savant as my guru. I already have one, anyway.

Religion makes us say, think and believe stupid things. Want proof? Here it is:

Religion is not at fault when it comes to clean shaven, jobs , girls etc.. it is us humans who have created this environment and assume everyone should follow this realm , we live in a materialistic world , and throughout our lives are after a life , where we have money, nice cars, nice house , going out etc.. but in fact I believe we are forgetting the utmost truth and that is waherguru.

We create the environment? Sir, God - the creator did that. not us. We live in a material world - how on earth do you expect it to be anything but materialistic? I am sorry for being argumentative - I only do so to show that I have considered these things already, and my current knowledge has been informed by some rational contemplation, not emotion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We create the environment? Sir, God - the creator did that. not us. We live in a material world - how on earth do you expect it to be anything but materialistic? I am sorry for being argumentative - I only do so to show that I have considered these things already, and my current knowledge has been informed by some rational contemplation, not emotion.

I beg to differ, this is a view of despondance and is blatantly irresponsible - you cannot blame the state of society upon God, thats just the easy way out. We created the society we live in by our thought process, just like an architect sees a prebuilt house in his mind, so the external world is a projection of our thought process. We are responsible for the society and we must make it better. Your concept of God is babyish, please contemplate gurbani more deeply, it is not just a story to make you feel better.

To fall in with the material world of todays society to some extent is necessary to live within it, but I have realised the modern world is built upon a philosophy of 'evil' You may think this a strong word, but today there is no underlying philosophy/religion of 'good'. To clarify these terms good is harmony and evil is dis-harmony or chaos. The world promotes dis-harmony. sexy images everywhere you look, emphasis on external image, culture of desire fulfilment, have sex with as many men/women you want etc etc. Where are the morals in todays world, where is the sense of community between ALL people, society is degrading there is no doubt about it. Excessive thinking is dis-harmony a quiet mind with less thinking is a movement towards harmony. Look at how everyone craves stimulation.

Sikhi is a teaching that is 'good' it re-integrates a person into a natural state. As man is the only animal to have a psychology he is the only animal that needs a guru because he can think complexly. It is a mans duty to stand up for righteousness/dharam/morality in society not to become a sheep and just follow the bad. Listen brother whether you have a dhari pagh or whatever if you want to be 'good' then you will ahve to go against this society by being a part of it and doing something to make it better. Then you will be outcasted anyway, why do you want to make a pact with the devil? But You may think this society is fine, thats all good kha'oh Pee'oh Aash Kar'oh but when your good karma runs out and you find yourself in darkness of sorrow and realise the emptiness of the world and as you cry out with mental anguish just remember he will be there the guru to take you into his heart of undifferentiated nonduality.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Something that could not have been achieved by taking too seriously that spiritual stuff - as that would invariably neglect the real.

if God is at the core of all things how can there be a reality that is not spiritual, I disagree with your duality.

It cant succeed in benefiting a person who doesnt know the ways of life: how to deal with people, how to get what you want, etc. Religion will only make things worse for him - because it will tell him "those things dont matter anyway.." .. "what matters is inner happiness" or something equally vague and useless.

I have experienced exactly the opposite of your sentiment.

How can a way of life that teaches you to love, tolerate and respect everyone not teach you how to deal with other people. A way which tels you reap what you sow, that you have to work hard to get what you want.

I think that you came to Sikhi with a preconceived notion of what it was, ignored the reality of it and wandered around in your mental image of what it is to be a Sikh and growing tired of your delusion are blaming Sikhism rather than yourself.

Nowhere are we taught not to participate in society at any level, the only teaching is that you should not let it consume you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

if God is at the core of all things how can there be a reality that is not spiritual, I disagree with your duality.
I dont understand what you are saying - and what you have written makes no sense to me.

How can a way of life that teaches you to love, tolerate and respect everyone not teach you how to deal with other people. A way which tels you reap what you sow, that you have to work hard to get what you want.

These are good things to learn - but you dont need Sikhi to teach you them. I didnt need Sikhi to teach me these things directly - my parents did that job just fine. But, if i were a worldly person and did not know such things, then knowing them would benefit me greatly. But I never had that problem to solve. It simply did not exist. Sikhi though never taught me to want to be successful, to crave and seek wealth, to want and achieve the admiration of others. It is not the job for Sikhi to put that desire in a person - indeed Sikhi does the opposite, it tends to remove it. God blessed me with great comfort that I had no need to struggle in my life for material things: and facing up to a strong Sikh influence, I dared not dream of becoming wealthier (why would i? that would be greedy). But that is what i needed to do. I was also seduced by the mystics who indulge in romanticism - to them one must look inside, the world outside is not of any importance. The way to be happy, they would claim is self knowledge. Looking back - it was all a waste of time. My time and effort would have been better spent getting as much life experience as possible: dealing with people, learning the ways of the world. Logically the most successful people are those who have a sharply honed common sense. They have a wealth of experience to draw upon and i admire such people for their penetrating straightforward rationality. In comparison so-called intellectuals and spiritual men seem shallow and indulgent.

My point is simply that I started with a specific problem - having poor people skills, of lacking a purpose in life. What i needed to was immerse myself in worldy matters and concerns and gain valuable experience. Instead I thought Sikh would solve that problem - it did not because it cannot. Religion can help a materialistic person be less materialistic - and this is a good thing, but it could never have helped a person who was not at all materialistic become more materialistic. In fact I am at a loss to see how any Sikh can achieve the stated goal of Sikhi - to create a householder saint without coming with a certain level of wordliness and thirst for worldy success from elsewhere.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think you are getting confused , the mind plays a lot of tricks on us humans , without guidance from the almighty truth , how does one human being know if he/she is honest, going on the right path, doing good for the community. How do we know this without the guidance of waheguru?

We dont , simple as that ?

We can spend our whole life chasing after materialistic things , wanting more and more setting our goals higher and higher , there should be a limit somewhere , sikhi doesnt say dont provide a good living for your family and yourself , but it also says dont waste your whole life after this so called good life, re-cite and remeber waheguru which should be the ultimate goal. Remembering waheguru will bring peace to your mind , and whether you have millions or just a dollar , you would be satisfied with what you have.

I dont think you can generalise that sikhi doesnt do this , doesnt do that etc.. , you had a bad experience , it wasnt for you , but as vinegar said for you posting your questions there is obviously a dboubt in your mind whether you have done the right thing ( see mind playing tricks on you) you are continously telling your mind what i have done is right, i am helping others , socialising , earning a good living ,but in your back of your mind may be thinking have i done the right thing .

Dont get me wrong here , i am not trying to judge you , but just a mere observation from the posts , i may be wrong ( most often are )

just a few thoughts

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Vinegar

I don't want this to be an overly critical or mean post, but if your character didn't improve I can only assume that you didn't read/understand Gurbani; also Sikhi aims to 'wake you up' not send you into a deeper sleep, the point is to wake up to the reality around you and not be affected by it, not to isolate yourself form it.
This is a typical view: It assumes that Sikhi can always help someone - and if it doesnt - it is because the flaw lies in the person. But it is a mistaken view. To some people, like myself, Sikhi cannot help you. It can actually have the oppositve effect and make things worser. Talking about sleep is facetious - the pursuit of spirituality is the greatest vice. It is actively seeking to put yourself to sleep. Truly waking up is accepting the reality that surrounds you and living it without fantasy. Spirituality is fantastic - and it is so because it is fantasy. Waking up is realising that as humans we have responsibilities and we have roles that we should concentrate our intellects and abilities in filling. Society has room for all colours - and there is room for saints - but a society full of saints is doomed to fail. True society needs men who have all sorts of worldy motivations and act upon them. It requires the greedy, the selfish, the proud, the insecure, the wealthy, the poor. It needs men to be obssessed about art, or science, or language, or money or something else, that is not necessarily spiritual. It needs all of these things which are supposedly "materialistic" and without it we would have very little to show for ourselves.

You speak of Sikhism as a physical thing ("religion gets in your way") - the physical aspect of Sikhism is a uniform, and isn't what being a Sikh is all about

We are physical things. The world is a physical thing. We live and deal with physical things. All of our lives involve physical things. Being a sikh is no different. The physical universe is our realm - and no sane person can ignore or deny this. The Sikh religion followed faithfully - as i attempted to do - will not allow you any room for pursuits of material goods. If you are born into comfort and wealth, as I was, I should have no impulse to acquire more: that would be selfish. I should instead make the best of my leisure and in the pursuit of higher things - like enlightnment. But this was no good for me: it was a waste. One can aspire to be a great Sikh, but what does that mean in this day? Another rebel without a cause? Perhaps i should borrow one from our liberal brothers? And then in pursuit of purpose, I will become unsatisfied with the traditions and society I have inherited because they do not match up to those crisp liberal ideals - should that mean I become cynical and skeptical of our people? And when will I have time to make a real contribution because the problems are so daunting and the urgency so pressing? What can one person do? And taking on such big problems should personal ones become unimportant and insignificant that it does not seem silly if I neglect them? Nevermind that as a naive person without much worldly experience as most concerned friends of humanity are, I am unlikely to have the sense to realise what problems are to be left alone, and which ones are to be tackled, and in tackling them, what is the best way to do so by common sense, which I lack? And what to do when the problems are not so much problems as they are facts of reality that ever have been true - and no one thought to see them otherwise until the age of misguided but very much enthusiastic reform? I agree with you when you say "I dont think you understand what Sikhi is at all," because I do not think it is beneficial for anyone to worry about such things.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mekhane'ch Jannat

I beg to differ, this is a view of despondance and is blatantly irresponsible - you cannot blame the state of society upon God, thats just the easy way out. We created the society we live in by our thought process, just like an architect sees a prebuilt house in his mind, so the external world is a projection of our thought process. We are responsible for the society and we must make it better. Your concept of God is babyish, please contemplate gurbani more deeply, it is not just a story to make you feel better.

Who is blaming anything on God? In fact who is woeing about the state of society? Not me. We did not create the society we live in - we inherited it. Previous generations evolved it, to be sure, and we will leave our marks on it for the future generations, but it was not created in our minds or anything silly like that. Idealism (in the philosophical sense) holds this, but idealism is not anything to be taken seriously. I have said nothing of any concept of God and do not intend to. What i said was 'god created the material universe', which is fairly uncontroversial. It is no suprise to hear views of idealism here - but this just shows how far from reality some Sikhs really are. The funny thing is the addition of "please contemplate gurbani more deeply, " as if this can remedy the complete lack of common sense and sanity that the person has cultivated in his fantasy. Have you seen the movie where Russel Crowe plays a madman who sees hidden and secret messages in newspapers? Well our ideal brothers play the same game, but they see hidden messages in gurbani. They think if they comtemplate real hard they'll see something that is apparently not there. Thus their idealism becomes justified in Sikhi and sanctioned by no less than the eternal Guru. The Sikh religion so famed for its straight-forwardness and practicability suddenly becomes a mystical one where nothing is certain and things are always deeper than they seem. One must obviously prescribe to idealism first, ofcourse, otherwise the contradiction is blindingly unavoidable.

Listen brother whether you have a dhari pagh or whatever if you want to be 'good' then you will ahve to go against this society by being a part of it and doing something to make it better.

See, this troubled me for quite a while, but happily i no longer carry this delusion. To help society you must go against it? This is a typical view of idealism. I do no subscribe to it any more. People are not that bad, and do not confuse this to be a "khao peo aish karo" statement, because it is not. I know to an idealist things are not good enough, but nevermind, such a person has unrealistic expectations that can never be met. Even now you are talking about the after-life, about running out of karma, and this and that. Tell me, how is this useful to me *now*, in this life? It simply is not. Nothing you can say from your idealistic perspective is worth an ounce of common sense - experience from reality. I can talk to the most despicable street wise person and he will give me more useful wisdom than the most paunchea idealist - who's ideas and thoughts are of another world, far removed from reality. As i said, my problem wasnt my morality, or my sense of goodness - it was a poor appreciation of reality - and Sikhi practiced in the idealistic way made things worse. Everything you have said applies in the same way. So tell me, what good are such things if they do not improve my life in the real world?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thats fine you must do what you feel is correct in the situation you are presently in. But please do not ridicule what you cannot at this point in your life understand. Why do you think mystic saints like the sufi's were called the pivot of the world or the centre around the material world turns? Whether you believe this or not, I have come to believe (i might add I once shared your view, but I got changed) that the 'saints' are mediators between mankind and god. Without Saints we would be in hell chaos and the I doubt humans would exist. The Saints see the big picture not their small individual existence and they lighten the Earth of mankinds paap, the paap of just being an Ego. This mahaan bakshish is one reason for the ustat of Saints in Sri Guru Granth Sahib Jee. This ideal is what men should aim for, if everyone strived for this goal we would live in heaven, because only the blessed can become true saints. So your life that you want live in the material world is your choice but because Gurbani doesn't connect with you, please do not ridicule people who follow the path, even though there are many fakers but the genuine people who follow the path are the support of mankind and without these people you wouldn't be able to be able to live the life you do. I know you will react to these words with incredulity but ye of little faith.

Also i like this comment i read somewhere - if you want to look out for your neighbours welfare you must disregard your own -

This is one of the things Gurbani does for you it can make you a beautiful cog in society. An individual who strives for an ideal expressed in Gurbani becomes a perfected member of society, he becomes an instrument for the evolution of man. His social relations become perfected because of the ideals he follows. But if you have not experienced social relations fully then go and experience them and see but keep an open rational mind that there are other things outside 'following your own bliss or improving your life'

Link to comment
Share on other sites

beautiful post, but im afraid i will only be swayed by logical arguments. if we are talking about doing good then i know the best way is to become powerful and wealthy. when a person is those things then he is useful to others, and when you are useful you can be helpful. if my intention is to be a positive influence in my community then i can best achieve that by making sure i am very successful and thus maximally useful. If i can give someone a job, or fund someone's education, or sponsor a poor relative from back home, these are all things I can do with money. I do not mean to ridicule saints - i have great respect for our religion and our faith. We all have our own ways to achieve our goals, and I am choosing one I feel to be the right one for me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

ਮਃ ੧ ॥

मः १ ॥

mehlaa 1.

First Mehl:

ਪਹਿਲੈ ਪਿਆਰਿ ਲਗਾ ਥਣ ਦੁਧਿ ॥

पहिलै पिआरि लगा थण दुधि ॥

pahilai pi-aar lagaa than duDh.

First, the baby loves mother's milk;

ਦੂਜੈ ਮਾਇ ਬਾਪ ਕੀ ਸੁਧਿ ॥

दूजै माइ बाप की सुधि ॥

doojai maa-ay baap kee suDh.

second, he learns of his mother and father;

ਤੀਜੈ ਭਯਾ ਭਾਭੀ ਬੇਬ ॥

तीजै भया भाभी बेब ॥

teejai bha-yaa bhaabhee bayb.

third, his brothers, sisters-in-law and sisters;

ਚਉਥੈ ਪਿਆਰਿ ਉਪੰਨੀ ਖੇਡ ॥

चउथै पिआरि उपंनी खेड ॥

cha-uthai pi-aar upannee khayd.

fourth, the love of play awakens.

ਪੰਜਵੈ ਖਾਣ ਪੀਅਣ ਕੀ ਧਾਤੁ ॥

पंजवै खाण पीअण की धातु ॥

punjvai khaan pee-an kee Dhaat.

Fifth, he runs after food and drink;

ਛਿਵੈ ਕਾਮੁ ਨ ਪੁਛੈ ਜਾਤਿ ॥

छिवै कामु न पुछै जाति ॥

chhivai kaam na puchhai jaat.

sixth, in his sexual desire, he does not respect social customs.

ਸਤਵੈ ਸੰਜਿ ਕੀਆ ਘਰ ਵਾਸੁ ॥

सतवै संजि कीआ घर वासु ॥

satvai sanj kee-aa ghar vaas.

Seventh, he gathers wealth and dwells in his house;

ਅਠਵੈ ਕ੍ਰੋਧੁ ਹੋਆ ਤਨ ਨਾਸੁ ॥

अठवै क्रोधु होआ तन नासु ॥

athvai kroDh ho-aa tan naas.

eighth, he becomes angry, and his body is consumed.

ਨਾਵੈ ਧਉਲੇ ਉਭੇ ਸਾਹ ॥

नावै धउले उभे साह ॥

naavai Dha-ulay ubhay saah.

Ninth, he turns grey, and his breathing becomes labored;

ਦਸਵੈ ਦਧਾ ਹੋਆ ਸੁਆਹ ॥

दसवै दधा होआ सुआह ॥

dasvai daDhaa ho-aa su-aah.

tenth, he is cremated, and turns to ashes.

ਗਏ ਸਿਗੀਤ ਪੁਕਾਰੀ ਧਾਹ ॥

गए सिगीत पुकारी धाह ॥

ga-ay sigeet pukaaree Dhaah.

His companions send him off, crying out and lamenting.

ਉਡਿਆ ਹੰਸੁ ਦਸਾਏ ਰਾਹ ॥

उडिआ हंसु दसाए राह ॥

udi-aa hans dasaa-ay raah.

The swan of the soul takes flight, and asks which way to go.

ਆਇਆ ਗਇਆ ਮੁਇਆ ਨਾਉ ॥

आइआ गइआ मुइआ नाउ ॥

aa-i-aa ga-i-aa mu-i-aa naa-o.

He came and he went, and now, even his name has died.

ਪਿਛੈ ਪਤਲਿ ਸਦਿਹੁ ਕਾਵ ॥

पिछै पतलि सदिहु काव ॥

pichhai patal sadihu kaav.

After he left, food was offered on leaves, and the birds were called to come and eat.

ਨਾਨਕ ਮਨਮੁਖਿ ਅੰਧੁ ਪਿਆਰੁ ॥

नानक मनमुखि अंधु पिआरु ॥

naanak manmukh anDh pi-aar.

O Nanak, the self-willed manmukhs love the darkness.

ਬਾਝੁ ਗੁਰੂ ਡੁਬਾ ਸੰਸਾਰੁ ॥੨॥

बाझु गुरू डुबा संसारु ॥२॥

baajh guroo dubaa sansaar. ||2||

Without the Guru, the world is drowning. ||2||

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That is a wonderfully concise description of the human condition. Immediately I can see that I have gone through exactly those early stages and will probably face the other ones later in my life. i just dont see any alternative to it. That is just how things have always been, how can it be any different?

It used to be that i would make moral decision and take pride in having made them. This in turn made me stronger because I felt as though I was in control. But once you go along with Sikhi you sacrifice your 'individuality,' you are just living like a robot - the decisions are already made for you because a Sikh acts in a certain way and there is nothing more to say than to follow them. I found t to be a horribly stifling philosophy. And yet that is the path for the Sikh who takes after the Khalsa ideals.

I have a cousin brother who is not religious. He does not care for any of that spiritual stuff, or Sikhi or anything like that. It simply does not matter to him one bit. He believes in God though. Anyway, I have watched him grow up from a teenager into a man and seen the virtues of being a decent person without the extraneous religious baggage. Common sense is his main guide - if he feels a decision makes sense, he will act accordingly. He has an uncompromising respect for traditions and does not breach them without reason. Him deciding not to drink alcohol is a startling moral decision - something i duly respect. His father drinks occasionally, and he would be quite within his rights to drink (sensibly), and yet he chooses not to. Similarly there are many such decisions which he consciously makes which make him a very moral person. I think he is probably more moral than me, and I am supposed to be the 'saintly' one around here. In fact I am a complete pakhandi compared to him because his life choices are completely his own - whereas mine are ostensibly out of my hands and externally determined. Each 'evil' he overcomes, each correct decision he makes, makes his character stronger and refined.

It is the opposite for me. Sikhi was supposed to make me stronger and make me a better person, and yet it has turned me into jelly. I find myself doing and saying things which I dont even truly believe - and I do this because I have commited myself to a way of life that grows further and further away from that original spring of inspiration. I can not claim I am a better person for all of this trouble - I simply haven't made any progress that I can recognise. I miss that wonderful feeling of doing good - because I _choose_ to do good, not because I have to, because I am a Sikh.

On the other hand I cannot help feel that he is missing out on all of that 'spiritual stuff' - which really is a great source of pleasure. But then what good has that spirituality stuff done for me? Isnt it better to go without that spiritual stuff and be a good, useful productive and moral person - than be a spiritual one forever conflicted with worldly affairs? The answer to me is obvious. I will take my chances with a worldy life.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear Veer Ji,

The one single biggest problem the whole world faces is "I".

Try counting how many times you have used the word in your above post.

As long as "I" remains the dominant factor in your mind (an animal survival instinct), "you" or "tu" can not flourish, and it is in "tu" - "Vaheguru" that liberation, understanding and peace is found.

The ways to get rid of "I" are many, maya works it's wonders on us and our mind strengthens maya's web.

Try and not look at others and compare yourself, just learn to be at peace with your self, at peace with who and how you are, then work on yourself, step by step. We must learn to entice and win over our mindm and give power and to our atma, but this will only happen with "tu" on our mind. It is he who's nadar and kirpa will allow our atma to flourish.

Keep him on your mind, day and night, in all your actions and thoughts, before and after each task, and the "I" will slowly disappear, then individuality will no longer matter.

A spiritual man of any faith - has only one wish, to find God, find peace and return to God. Inthe most basic essence, as long as we strive individuality (ego), how can we want to be part of God, part of his creation, part of the panth, part of a family, part of mankind.... for merging with akaal, ones individuality is meaningless, it is a hinderance.

The world is in such strife because people want to be different, and want to be known for being different, and think they have the intelligence to be better than others. Peace is achieved in Sadh Sangat, in charity, in simran, in seva, in unity, in us and you, and not I.

You need to find some Gursikh and do sangat, change your company, you need influence, as we all do.

The funny thing is, unintentionally, one can find more individuality in Sikhi than anywhere else, our Guru's were Masters of many Arts and strived for the highest standards, but at teh same time were humble and sharing in nature. Take up an instrument of our Guru's, Saranda, Taus,Dilruba, Sarangi, Rabab, Jora...and many others which also are good for kirtan i.e. esraj, sitar, tar-shanai... learn raag, learn to compose, learn to do kirtan, study the many,many sikh related texts/granths, learn the history of the panth in it's many faces, learn Martial arts, learn santhia of Sri Dasam Granth, Sri Sarbloh Granth, Learn laguages - Sanskrit, Persian, Braj...learn architecture and help maintain Guru's architecture...

I can go on.

The Sikh fold offers many opportunities to be individual at the same time as serving the panth and contributing positively to society.

The individuality us manmukhs crave is in fact the band wagon, and not individual at all. Thinking we believe in God, and not following his given advice because our intellegince and common sense is far superior to the holy words of his reflection on Earth (Guru Sahiban) - is the common mindset in nearly all young religious communities in the world today.

At work, in my eyes, all my collegues are similar, they all strive to be different, but their differences are superficial, there mind frameworks are the same, they are enticed and find pleasure in the same things, it's just the wallpaper that is slightly different. Yet they all have good qualities which are similar also, a product of Christian influenced upbringing, although as yourself, they put this down to common sense rather than say Jesus Christ has indirectly influenced their personality.

Although I am in no way a "role model" gursikh, I am easily seen as the "different" person in the office, but not in a bad way i.e. fanatic. All I try and do is follow my Guru's divine words and try to follow in their and the many great Gursikhs footsteps that have graced this Earth. But even when I am simply trying to the same as my loved ones, my thinking and appearance differs from my colleagues, this is Guru Ji's bakshish and has nothing at all to do with me.

Guru Ji has given his children the gift of individuality and unity at the same time, we see all as his children, yet live differently, to serve all his children.

I pray that Vaheguru is kind to you, if you really want his help, please do heartfelt ardaas, again and again, with complete faith and focus (no doubts), true benti "never" falls on deaf ears.

God bless you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...