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Are Baptised Sikh's the New Priestly Class?

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by Scarlet Pimpernel, Jun 26, 2011.

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  1. Scarlet Pimpernel

    Scarlet Pimpernel
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    More and more Sikhs today are unable to read Gurmukhi and rely on the initiated to conduct matters in the Gurdwara.Would someone who has not studied Gurbani see the baptised Sikh's as being a superior, almost a priestly class? The ideal is of sangat and pangat, but is there still an equal fellowship?In another fifty years perhaps the small percentage of baptised Sikhs will be the only ones who understand Gurmukhi ,with the rest of the sangat just attending the service. The baptised are already the only ones allowed to conduct ceremonies and read the Holy Word ,atleast in a Gurdwara .Is that not somewhat similar to the brahmins role in Hinduism.Are the baptised the only ones who should recite Gurbani and are they more capable of understanding it.If the Khalsa have exclusive Gurdwara rights would that suggest they are more priest than SaintSoldier?
     
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  3. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    Sinnerji,

    I do not think anyone has a monopoly on reading or understanding the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. I also do not think sikhism will end up with knowledge open only to a chosen few. However I would like to make some points regarding baptised sikhs. ALL of my cousins were baptised at an early age, apart from my brother and me. I also wanted very much to be baptised, and my understanding was that I would be baptised at the Golden Temple on a trip to India when I was around 14. My grandfather blocked this, on the basis that I was young and I had no idea what I was about to commit to. In hindsight he was right, I would have made a lousy amritdhari sikh, however, let us think what it means as an adult to be amritdhari.

    The tenth Guru called for 5 heads, he asked for 5 people to die for him, although history shows 5 goats were killed instead, I think those men did die., and I think possibly that could be a big point here. In being baptised, changing of clothes, physical appearance, yes they did die, because those men would never be as they were before baptism again., they died and were reborn as the Khalsa, as baptised sikhs, with a different mode of thinking and living. That is now how I see baptism, giving up your old life for your new one, to feel the magic of 500 years of spirituality and knowledge flooding through your veins, which then also begs the question, at what point should we be baptised? at the beginning, towards the end, sometime in the middle?

    I would go as far as to say, if you are not prepared right now, this minute, to give your head for the guru, and leave behind your family and your life, should you be baptised?

    I am not lauding extremism here, but I feel every baptised sikh , if push came to shove, should be able to make that decision without even thinking. I have to say, I could not, I love my wife and parents too much. Is this attachment? I do not feel that way for me, I have no great fear of death, but I am petrified of my poor wife being left alone. I paused whilst writing that statement, an inner voice very calmly stated that my wife would be fine, as she is a strong woman, and such thoughts of being petrified are an indignity not only to my wife but millions of people every day who have to fight adversity and fate.

    Do I see perfection in the ideal of the baptised sikh? , yes, I do, but only in the ideal, and the ideal remains a fully physically perfect singh/singhni with a mind to match
     
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    #2 Harry Haller, Jun 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011
  4. Annie

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    What an interesting thing to write, Sinner Singh ji.
    *waits to read replies* :interestedkudi:

    To be honest, I was surprised when I learned that Sikhi has no priestly class. It's pretty remarkable, considering some people's desire to lead (sometimes for selfish reasons), and some other people's desire to follow. I really hope we are able to keep things as they were intended, and not go the way of other religions. I'm sure you know what can happen when one group is in charge of the books, and the rest of the people are illiterate.
     
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  5. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    The ONE ( and Most important) distinction that most people FORGET or chose to DISREGARD when they bring in the BRAHMINS into a discussion on Sikhism/Gurmatt is that............... BRAHMIN IS BORN.....NOT MADE !!

    A chamaar/choohrra/jatt/ramgariah/even Prince Edward of England...can be blue in the face and die trying..HE CANNOT BECOME A BRAHMIN.PERIOD. There has never been a CONVERTED BRAHMIN and never will be.

    A Khalsa...a AMRITDHAREE is MADE by VOLUNTARY CHOICE..and NEVER BORN !! There has never been a Born Amrtidharee and never will be.

    Prince Edward could be an Amrtidharee by Tomorrow if he chooses to be one...BUT he CANNOT be a BRAHMIN until he dies and is REBORN to a Brahmin Father !!

    2. EXACT SAME DISTINCTION as regards to JANEAU.. vis a vis the 5 Kakkaars. Some misguided people just love to compare the 5 kakaars to janeau...

    What they forget or choose to disregard is that a JANEAU is NOT VOLUNTARY !!! Its brought by the Brahmin to the person.. SECONDLY there are various DIFFERENT Janeaus ofr different castes..a Chamaar cannot ever wear a Janeau meant for a BRAHMIN !! NO WAY. The 5 Kakaars are entirely voluntary..the person desirous of wearing them has to GO TO THE PANJ..accept the conditions, etc etc and abide by the Rules and Maryada of Pahul. And most important..anyone..poor/rich..royalty....beggar..low caste..high caste..whatever race creed region... ALL have the RIGHT to Pahul and Kakaars.

    3. SO IF the chamaars, the ravidasis, the mazhbhis..the choohrras, the low castes etc etc are in that Situation its because they CHOOSE TO BE SO. Each one can be TRANSFORMED into a SARDAR overnight....and IF a MONA MORCHA adherent wants to remain a MONA..its his CHOICE..no one is stopping him from PAHUL and the 5 kakaars.

    Taking the PAHUL... wearing the 5 kakaars.. sticking to the MARYADA DISCIPLINE.. all require EFFORT and Commitment... RESPONSIBILITY... if one cannot do it.. then DONT !! No one is forcing you or coercing you.. why the need to whine about it ?? Just because you think its a waste of time to learn Gurmukhi.. sehaj paath.. ardass etc etc.. why WHINE that someone lese who did'nt think that way.. is "special"..blah blah blah..doing the paath..ardass.. why NOT ME ?? especially when i DONT KNOW HOW.. don't care to know how..and don't give a damn.. BUT why NOT ME ??...anyway..???? I WANT to be "special too.. isn't that ridiculous ???
     
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  6. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Guru Ji INTENDED it that way.. IF we follow exactly what Guru Nanak ji intended for us..EACH SIKH..man woman is a "Priest"....and each Sikh HOUSE is a DHARAMSAAL (Ghar ghar ander dharamsaal)...and each sikh kitchen is a GURU KA LANGGAR.

    Along the way we have walked AWAY from the Gurus intention....we abdicated our responsibility...our houses are no more Dharamsaals where Sikhi/gurmatt is TAUGHT...and BRED...and Encouraged...Our kitchens are no more for the Sangat but PRIVATE..and the SIKH is for INDIVIDUAL ...no more for SOCIETY...or Kaum...we have become rich and selfish...haughty..proud..and think only of ourselves...we have decided to PAY for others to do our work...very soon we may be having "PAID NITNEM" too...and why not ?? IF we can have paid paaths,,paid ardasses..why not paid Nitnem and paid naam japp ?? and then we will be taking along "paid slaves" along to Dharamraaj so that they can be "punished" for our deeds !! Ha Ha...thats the road we are on now...
     
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  7. Annie

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    I agree. That's more or less what I was trying to say, but in a different way. I think you and I are both trying to say that we should all be responsible, without one group trying to take advantage of another.... right?
     
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  8. findingmyway

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    We are all equal as humans but each has different roles depending on their abilities and choice. That is the way the world works. Many are not amritdhari and take the time and effort to take part in paath's, teaching, kirtan at the Gurdwara as they want to. Anyone who can't be bothered learning Gurmukhi or learning what the Guru Granth Sahib ji says and is instructing us has no right to complain about being left out. This is the beauty of Sikhi, as Gyani ji says, it is all voluntary and the emphasis is on responsibility for self and having the drive to learn yourself. Anyone who is actively learning has no right to give themselves airs but equally it is a sad rfeflection on the community which relies on a paid worker to do things for them. The people who are only attending should stop crying and start learning whether they are amritdhari or not.
     
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  9. BhagatSingh

    BhagatSingh Canada
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    Sinner Singh ji, that has happened to every religion. It will certainly happen to Sikhism. When it does, then there will be birth of Nanak 2.0 who will challenge such institutions and preach that we get back to the essence. He will be spat upon by the followers of Sikhism. A religion will be started in his name, Sikhism 2.0, as people get attached to him and his teachings, and not to which his teachings point and so on. Then that religion will be challenged by yet another Nanak, Nanak 3.0 and yet another religion, Sikhism 3.0 will be started in his name. This cycle, this constant flux is part of reality, it will continue for along as God wills.

    Now the question is whether we want to be entangled in this cycle or break free?
     
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  10. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    I have grave discomfort with this thread. It is yet one more thread where amritdhari are put on the defensive for what are hypothetical faults of a group. The expressed concerns about them arise from disappointments experienced by individuals. It is always faulty logic to generalize from the individual experience to collective truth without exact sampling and measurement tools.

    The discussion also rests this single unfounded assumption/ framed as a rhetorical question:
    This is the ideal of the Khalsa. Be that sparrow.


    Thread closed.
     
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    #9 spnadmin, Jun 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2011
  11. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    I have always been "advised" to WAIT for Version 0.1 ( 1.1/2.1/3.1 etc ) as the one with ZERO behind it is full of "bugs" !! So windows 3.1 is always better than Windows 3.0 !! So perhaps this Law also works in religion..certainly looks that way from your post above...
     
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