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Yogism 3H0 Gurudwaras and Yoga

Discussion in 'Interfaith Dialogues' started by CaramelChocolate, Jul 28, 2005.

  1. CaramelChocolate

    CaramelChocolate
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    Sat sri akaal, I am interested in visiting a 3H0 Gurudwara I was wondering if there were any in the UK..?
    Also, what is it with these Sikhs and yoga? Isn't yoga a Hindu practice?
     
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  3. NamHariKaur

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    Re: 3H0 Gurudwaras/YOGA?

    Sat Nam CaramelChocolate Ji;

    Guru Nanak himself included many things that had come before him. He did not create or introduce everything that is in Sikhism, but took the best of what had already been taught or written about before his time and added wonderful things such as equality of all people. Guru Gobind Singh included the works of 13 non-Sikh writers in the Siri Guru Granth Sahib - choosing those who espoused the Word of God. Most or all of these were from times before Guru Nanak. Some were Sufis for example. One way of looking at what Guru Nanak did is to say that he looked at Hindu (and other religious practices too but he was born Hindu I believe) and spoke out against those practices that he felt were astray from a proper devotional practice. He decried the caste system which had roots in the concept of the karma of one's birth. He decried treating women as inferiors. He decried meaningless rituals and symbolism that did not enrichen one's devotional practices. But in some ways he kept much of what was good in Hinduism and Eastern Religions and corrected the deviations and obfuscations that he saw in the forms those paths had taken by his time.

    Another thing that Guru Nanak did was to express everything into the kind of language that common people could understand. The SGGS is filled with metaphors of common people living common lives. It is not highly abstract and it does not require a sophisticated and trained mind to extract meaning or value from it. Yet at the same time, it's capacity to enlighten the greatest of minds seems unlimited. It was his intention that religion be accessible to everyone. Nonetheless, much of what Guru Nanak espoused existed before he began teaching us.

    The yogas are said to date back thousands of years and were taught originally by Master to Disciple and only became more prevalent or popular when Patanjali translated the Yoga Sutras from Sanskrit - maybe around 200BC. While Guru Nanak DID speak out against becoming too fixated on one's body by doing yoga and not giving enough attention to other aspects of one's spiritual practice he did not condemn yoga outright.

    Although I know even less about this than I do about the above, it is my understanding that King Janaa in some way transferred the domain of Yoga to Guru Ram Das.

    Basically, Kundalini Yoga is sort of a compilation of the 8-limbed path of yoga spoken of in Patanjali's sutras and is said to transform the individual faster than using the other yogas separately. Yogi Bhajan decided to teach this yoga openly in America when he came here in 1969 because he felt that these teachings needed to reach many more people than were being reached using the tradition of teaching only by Master to Disciples.

    The yogas open the chakras so that prana moves more freely throughout the 10 bodies. A lot more can be said about that and some of it can be found at www.{url not allowed}. It also enables one to sit in meditation longer without interference from body strains and discomforts. That is stated clearly in the yoga sutras. Also stated there is that Yoga develops the concentration that is suited for calming the mind and getting to that one-pointed-concentration or deep contemplation without attachment - Dhyana it is called in the yoga sutras - which is a name for that state or power of mind referred to in japji as "Suniai" - loosely translated as "listening." (See recent posts on this in the JapJi section of SPN). From there it is a short journey to Samadhi, which is the goal espoused in the yoga sutras. Guru Nanak also said that once samadhi is attained one should come back into the society and share of oneself rather than remaining sequestered away in bliss repose by oneself. According to
    "The Bandgi Nama" or \Communion with the Divine" by Sardar Raghbir Singh Bir, it is very tempting to remain in samadhi rather than returning to the life of a householder, which is why Guru Nanak emphasized this point.

    Finally, after doing yoga and meditation, one is in a very receptive state of body and mind for being transformed by the Gurbani of the Hukham of the day. All of this is the basis for the 3HO form of daily Sadhana which begins with JapJi at 4am for 20 minutes, followed by 40 minutes of Kundalini Yoga, followed by one hour of meditative chanting, followed by an 30 minute Gurdwara beginning with Ardas and ending with a Hukham. Ideally the Hukham is taken in Gurbani and then in English, but we only have a few here that come to Sadhana that can read from the Guru in Gurbani.

    I hope this helps. I wish I knew more so that I could develop these ideas here with more depth, but I am not that great a scholar. There are others here that might be able to answer deeper questions on these topics. I have roamed and rambled through a lot of materials in the past year to better understand my own transformation and to attempt to broaden my own perspective of Sikhism in relation to yoga, Hinduism and Buddhism. Before coming to Sikhism I regarded myself as more of Taoist or Buddhist and had also read the yoga sutras through several times, and found them perhaps the most inspiring set of instructions for transcending the limitations of ego-mind and experiencing union with God. But I am far from having mastered any of these things.

    Wahe Guru!
    Nam Hari Kaur, Eugene Oregon
     
  4. Hukum Kaur

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    Re: 3H0 Gurudwaras/YOGA?

    >>Sat Naam Caramel Chocolate, I am glad that you ask this important question to which I have only recently come to understand the answer to:
    It is thought that Sikhism condems yoga because at the time of Guru Nanak, the yogies thought that they were the hightest of the high. He spoke out against this.
    They would wair special earings to identify them selves and would smear ashes on their bodies...
    Guru Nanak said, let compation be your earings, and the path of the pure, your ashes. Guru Nanak transformed their symboles into a way of life, the loin cloth of self restraint, etc...
    Guru Nanak expressed that the True yoga is the yoga of life. One's life is a Kria (completed action) and should be practiced in this way... (Reman Shabad)
    Reman Eh Bidh Jog Kamao = practice yoga in this way.
    I left the poem and its translation at a friends house, however I am shure you can find it somewhere.
    As Nam Hari Kaur was saying, meditaions are primal, yoga is secondary, however one must take impecable care of this vehicle otherwise known as the soul-horse, for the purpose of being taken to God. From experience, if I do not set enough time for yoga before morning meditation, then my legs want to jump out of their skin and I feel like a two year old who just ate a lot of candy but has to sit on the plane...Kundulini yoga is an amazing spiritual streingthener and its best effects are digestion/elimination, navel center streingthening (which makes one's self-discaplin stronger), nervous system streingthening (so one can harbor high voltages of innate energy), emotional balence (more intuitive and devotional) and transformation of sexual energy (into creative).
    I realy wish their was a spell check, my appologies...
    Liv Kaur
    If you are interested in a book,
    as taught by Yogi Bahjan, go to www.a-healing.com
    WaheGuru
     
  5. CaramelChocolate

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    Yes yoga is essentially a Hindu practice and NamHariji I see what you are saying but the affects yoga has is purely due to science nothing religious so one should see it more as exercises rather than spiritual practice and personally I disagree with this:

    I agree with the meditation but not the yoga part, I am not sure if the Gurus did yoga but they all received the message of Waheguru fine and they didn't really need yoga to do it... Sikhism is all about our own control over our own mind and I guess if a 3H0 person is going to believe that yoga helps then it is essentially a placebo to make the mind clearer, I personally feel that the Gurus would have ENCOURAGED/PROMOTED yoga if it really did help one understand gurubani more... this is just my opinion.
    Thanks once again NamHari for a lovely long response... and on the japji thread also! Have a cyber icecream on me :ice:
     
  6. Hukum Kaur

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    Caramel chocolate wrote that ;'the Gurus would have promoted it (yoga) if they thought it helped...'
    Guru Nanak wrote, 'JO TUDH BHAAVAI SAA-EEBHALEE KAAR'=
    'What pleases you, is the only good done...'
    How does this quote support yoga? Well on an individual basis, if yoga makes one feel more connected to God through the soul body then God and Guru approve. It doesn't matter what one is doing, as long as they are not sleeping, and God's name is on their lips/mind. I could get up at 3:30, shower and then tip toe around in circles, as long as I am repeating the Name, God can hear me. For EVERY SINGLE inhale in Kundulini yoga, we mentaly say Sat. And for every single exhale we mentaly say Naam (except if another mantra is used).
    Yoga means union. The YOLK of the egg inside the white.
    If yoga is not the path for you, than that is what is. However do not put doubt in the minds of others who have made this healthy choice.
    Their are some who do yoga without the intent of God. For example, Bikram is pure phisical. But Kundulili yoga uncoils the stored energy from around the base of the spine. It is no way placebo nor hocus pocus. It is practical, and it helps me be focused. I am not so perfect that I can follow these teachings without the help of disciplins like yoga. It helps me in the same way that wairring a Kara does. Every time I tune in or see the steel, I am reminded of Our inner nature.
    More so than being a spiritual practice, Yoga stringthens one's spiritual practice...And never forget that all of life is the spiritual practice.
    Sat Naam
    Wahe Guru
     
  7. CaramelChocolate

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    Liv Kaur, I disagree with your interpretation, and doesn't that apply to God? What pleases God is good? Anyway, if we turn it around to the man... whatever pleases us is good and is done in a spiritual way, does this mean those who do KAAM SUTRA cult practices can get to God as they are doing it "spiritually"?? :unsure:
     
  8. Arvind

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    Nam Hari ji,

    Just wanted to make sure, if you really wanted to say Guru Gobind Singh for the following:
    Guru Gobind Singh included the works of 13 non-Sikh writers in the Siri Guru Granth Sahib - choosing those who espoused the Word of God

    Regards.
     
  9. Lee

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    Sat sri akaal!

    Cyber Sangat,

    I think Liv Kaur makes a good and valid point. In the Pagan World one does the verious excerises, visulisations, meditations etc.. not to get close to God, but because us humans need ways to train our minds, so that the things we do to get close to God come easyer to us. If yoga is one of these ways of training so that one is more open to Gurbani, and more importantly, Guru Ji does not condone it as a waste of time, then I can see it's uses to Sikhs.

    Remember also that Sikhi is not a religion as such(A Christian or a Muslim can be a Sikh) it is a way, a practice. Guru Ji tells us:


    sarab Dharam meh saraysat Dharam.
    Of all religions, the best religion

    har ko naam jap nirmal karam.
    is to chant the Name of the Lord and maintain pure conduct.

    sagal kir-aa meh ootam kiri-aa.
    Of all religious rituals, the most sublime ritual

    saaDhsang durmat mal hiri-aa.
    is to erase the filth of the dirty mind in the Company of the Holy.

    sagal udam meh udam bhalaa.
    Of all efforts, the best effort

    har kaa naam japahu jee-a sadaa.
    is to chant the Name of the Lord in the heart, forever.

    sagal baanee meh amrit baanee.
    Of all speech, the most ambrosial speech

    har ko jas sun rasan bakhaanee.
    is to hear the Lord's Praise and chant it with the tongue.

    sagal thaan tay oh ootam thaan.
    Of all places, the most sublime place,

    naanak jih ghat vasai har naam.
    O Nanak, is that heart in which the Name of the Lord abides.

    That is the best way to God, is Simran, keep the company of the holy, do naam japna. If you have aids to help you with this, al the better I say. ;~)

    Cheers,

    Lee.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. NamHariKaur

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    Sat Nam Arvind!:)

    Arvind Ji - I know nothing! ::cool:: :)
    Are you correcting me about Guru Gobind Singh including the 13 others - or about his having compiled the SGGS itself? ::cool::

    I understand that the Adi Granth was compiled by the 3rd or maybe the 4th Guru - to sort out "false" works of Gurbani from the genuine ones, and maybe that is where the other 13 writers were included. But I was pretty sure Guru Gobind Singh compiled the final SGGS, yes?

    I read all these things but do not memorize historical things much. :eek: The general quality of historical things sticks with me pretty well but not the details.

    The things I focus on most are things related to and helpful to me in my spiritual practice. And when I write about things I have read about but not really memorized - I probably should poke around and get my facts more clear first. But maybe I can just rely on you and others to set my facts straight. ;) :D I don't think my errors are as much conceptual as they are in factual detail. - Or at least I hope that is the case!!!!::cool:: ::cool:: ::cool:: :)

    By all means - set me straight when I post something that is not quite accurate!:wah:

    Nam Hari Kaur, Eugene Oregon
     
  11. Arvind

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    Off-Topic:

    Nam Hari ji,

    I am not sure abt the issue. I hope Gyani ji or any other learned soul here can tell us more abt this.

    Regards.
     
  12. CaramelChocolate

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    Here is proof that yoga is an anti-gurmat practice... it comes under the same shelter as fasting... it is haraam [forbidden] in Sikhism

    Meeting with the Holy, the perfection of the Siddhas is obtained. What good is Yoga or indulgence in pleasures?
    saaDh milai siDh paa-ee-ai ke ayhu jog ke bhog. - ang 334

    I attain Yoga, singing the Kirtan of Your Praises. ||1||
    jog bani-aa tayraa keertan gaa-ee. ||1|| - ang 385

    All Yoga is in the Name of the Lord; the body and the breath of life belong to Him.
    sabh jogtan raam naam hai jis kaa pind paraanaa. - ang 477

    What is the good of practicing Yoga, giving feasts and charity, and practicing penance? ||4||
    jogayn kiN jagayn kiN daadayn kiN tapsaa. ||4|| - ang 526
     
  13. NamHariKaur

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    -----------------:)
     
    #12 NamHariKaur, Aug 3, 2005
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2005
  14. CaramelChocolate

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    NamHari ji I have only told you what Guruji says on the issue. 3H0 are blatently doing yoga as a spiritual practice which is clearly not allowed. Surely to loose weight it is not fine, but you have tried to justify it spiritually in Sikhism and from the quotes it is clearly not allowed.
    It is up to you if you think the quotes are one-sided and I am willing to continue this debate further but you must be willing to accept that I think yoga is forbidden in Sikhism, it is not narrow-minded to be strong in my opinion. If I was strong in the same opinion as you [that yoga is permissable in Sikhism], would you have sent me a personal message about me being set in my ways and dogmatic? Sorry if I have hurt your feelings, afterall this is a discussion forum and we are all here to engage in healthy discussions and exchange ideas. I am only sharing my side of the discussion. Please note that in this instance I am giving my own opinion of what I think is allowed in Sikhism based around my knowledge of Sikhism, not necessarily that I am for or against yoga on a personal level. Once again sorry if I have hurt your feelings as it seems this is the case.
     
    #13 CaramelChocolate, Aug 3, 2005
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2005
  15. NamHariKaur

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    CaramelChocolate;
    I will tell you what hurts my feelings - that you would refer to my private message to you in a public forum in a way that embarasses me.

    I no longer wish to communicate with you on any topic privately or publicly until I see you learning appropriate social etiquette and a little humility.

    Nam Hari Kaur
     
  16. rajsikh

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    i think shri naam hari kaur ji's feelings get hurt all the time,there is no place for feelings in discussion,because it is discussion about a topic,it is not any kind of personal attack
     
  17. NamHariKaur

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    Sat Nam-
    CC has misrepresented me in three ways when speaking about my private message to him.
    1. I never said anything about my feelings being hurt in my private message.
    2. I never used the word "dogmatic"
    3. I did not use the phrase "set in your ways"

    So in other words, nothing that CC said I said is true.

    ANd why do YOU say that my feelings get hurt all the time - you have NOOOOO basis for saying that at all.

    Peace and enlightenment to you both soon!
    Nam Hari Kaur
     
  18. truthseeker

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    Waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh!!!!!!!

    Just a question.... does anybody kno if there uis a 3HO gurdwara... or atleast any sangat that lives in Ottawa?????? i have a friend who went to there school in India... and she was telling me about it and was asking if i knew of anyone in Ottawa, Ontario.


    Waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh!!!
     
  19. Hukum Kaur

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    I am very thankfull that you found these quotes. Here is my interpritation of them...


    Meeting with the Holy, the perfection of the Siddhas is obtained. What good is Yoga or indulgence in pleasures?
    saaDh milai siDh paa-ee-ai ke ayhu jog ke bhog. - ang 334


    Guru Nanak saise that their is nothing wrong with laughing, enjoying life and dressing well. One may own a BMW as long as the BMW does not own them. In the same way, one can do yoga as long as it is not an empty act. What is it good for if it makes one ignore God? Does not God want us to keep our bodies, His creation fit? God smiles on us when we play soccor, why not when we do yoga?

    I do understand what you mean about people taking it too far as a spiritual practice. I suppose this would be the flip side to the people who only do it as a phisical practice. One must always ride the middle, the balence.


    What is the good of practicing Yoga, giving feasts and charity, and practicing penance? ||4||
    jogayn kiN jagayn kiN daadayn kiN tapsaa. ||4|| - ang 526
    No good if it is not for God. But with God charity is good, with God food is good, with God yoga is good.


    Have you ever done any yoga?
     
  20. CaramelChocolate

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    NamHari there is such thing as IMPLICATION and you did imply some things. If you want me to copy and paste from the personal message to prove this I will.

    Liv Kaur I have never tried yoga, anyway I agree with what you say, but you must understand that these 3H0 people are doing it as a blatent spiritual practice which would go against Sikhism.
     
  21. Lee

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    I Think one of the bigest mistakes made when quoteing Gurbani is to only quote the line or sentence that may back up your claim. We need to post the thing, the whole page, or pages dealing with whatever Guru Ji is tellng us.


    I have just found a a place in Guru Granth Sahib where it states, 'I have not practiced yoga, or meditated on Gods name, how have I spent my life?'

    It seems to be a discourse on how not to reach God, yet it says by not practiceing yoga, or meditating on God, then how can I reach God.

    As in a lot of things I think Guru Ji is trying to re-desingnate what yoga is, and what real yoga is, and how practiceing real yoga with mind focused on God can help us.

    Remember Guru Ji tells us that anybody can be a Sikh, the important thing is to stop meaningless ritual, to focus the mind on God as often as you can for as long as you can, and seeing God in all of Gods creation, treating it as you would God.

    Cheers,

    Lee.
     

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