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Decline of Sikhism

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by Admin Singh, Jan 7, 2010.

  1. Admin Singh

    Admin Singh
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    Quoted from a passage by S. Rattan Singh Jaggi

    ...these days people do not follow the ideology of Guru Nanak and his message in our practical life, which is the cause of decline of the
    religion...


    Finally there is a realization that Sikhism is on a decline.The Reasons?

    To begin with, today there is the very question of Sikh identity, and to define who is a Sikh. This time there is no government interference in religious affair of the Sikhs,no outside movement or influence but the decline has stemmed from within the Sikhism.

    Many young Sikhs, find the turban a bother. It gets in the way when they take to sports & swimming. Washing & drying the long hair is time-consuming, as is the morning ritual of winding seven yards of cloth around the head. It is hot and uncomfortable.

    In the end,there is also a question of fashion. They feel smarter without it.

    Sikh spiritual leaders express dismay at the rapidity with which a new
    generation of young men are trimming their hair and abandoning the
    turban, the most conspicuous emblem of the Sikh faith.Indeed, as the defining symbol of the Sikh tradition declines, its hard not to think of the core of the religion as declining as well.

    They have adopted,the globalization probably has had a greater impact, European habits: fast food, pubs and clubs. They want to show they are modern. They are willingly & votuntarily forgetting their own culture. Another 20 years will pass and the world wont have any more
    Sikhs in turbans.

    There is this terrible, misplaced urge to merge with the rest of the
    world, said Patwant Singh, a historian and the author of The Sikhs
    (John Murray, 1999).

    The Sikhs are practicing rites and ritual inconsistent with Sikhism, Including
    the practice of caste system into Gurdwaras, secretively smoking drugs &
    publicly Drinking, Idol worshiping and other rituals not followed by the Sikh Gurus .

    Much of the blame is to be shared by half-educated,Ignorant priestly class also called ironically 'Gianijis' who are spreading superstitions & falsehoods to earn tax-free income.

    The following News item speaks more:
    "Groups of Sikh priests have protested an order that could disbar men
    under the age of 30 and over 60 years to be employed in gurdwaras
    across Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.SGPC president
    Avtar Singh Makkar had recently endorsed the new recruitment rules for
    granthis and paathis (hymn singers) following complaints against
    younger priests. These ranged from moral turpitude to several instances of
    devotee collections in gurdwaras. Insisting there could be no compromise on maintaining the sanctity of the shrines, Mr Makkar called for a list of all
    Gurdwara employees below 30 years and ordered a thorough verification of each mans antecedents.The committee has also sought a fresh appraisal of each priests character, conduct, his knowledge of the holy scripture and
    efficiency in performing various religious rites."
    Courtesy : CathNewsIndia
     
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  3. kds1980

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    Don't worry even after 20 years I am sure we have Anti DG,pro DG ,anti meat pro meat and other issue's fighting with each other believing that they are saving sikhism from RSS,GOI,kala afghana,atheists islam etc
     
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  4. spnadmin

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    That is pretty funny Kanwardeep Singh ji -- I think your prediction will hold up!

    On another note, why, when I read this article, do I have the sensation that I am in the dead center of a sandstorm or tornado of some kind? If this is a list of issues and concerns, they we should add to it, because there are other problems that the author has not even mentioned that are far more serious than some things listed. And I don't understand what he means by "globalization." Globalization is unavoidable no matter what your religion, race, creed, language, country of origin, parent's country of origin, native language, employment, and so forth. Sikhi should be able to survive the onslaught of history. If the gurus and shaheeds survived ghastly torture and decimation, if Sikhi survived the raj, then it should be a snap to survive globalization. We are doing it now.
     
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  5. roab1

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    A Sikh should always smile and stay in chardi kala and accept will of God. Guru Gobind Singh walked out of chamkaur di Grahi with only three Sikhs left. And he did not contemplate the decline but sang 'haal mureedan...'. Sikh = Chardi Kala. Always.
     
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  6. vsgrewal48895

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    Dear All,

    IMHO there is no decline in Sikhism as defined in the philosophy of Guru Nanak. Of course there is a decline of Sikhs wearing 5 K's. IMHO with the advent of Sikh Forums on internet Its presence is much more known in the west and more individuals are studying it as a universal, simple faith in one Universal Creator. Humans are divine having a human experience. The cause of the trouble is I-Me-Mine complex (Eg0/Haumai). IMHO it is a Universal religion. I can vouch for that It will be there for eternity.

    Full Article;www.sikhphilosophy.net/sikh-sikhi-sikhism/24594-sikhism-a-universal-religion.html -

    Virinder
     
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  7. Amarpal

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    Dear Khasa Ji,

    Sikhi is the Philosophy and Khalsa is a Panth. Earlier also it was as it is. During Ranjit Singh many none sikhs also had Kesh; may be that was political need of the time. It does not mean that the followers of Sikhi were more. Sikhi is the Philosophy which directs our living .

    Earlier also there were few Sikhs, in sukhmani Sahib Guru Sahib has said there is one in millions that is not afflicted by the desire for gratification of senses. In present time also the situation is the same. Even I have found many people of other religion who came be classified as good followers of what Guru Sahib has said.

    Panth is Akaar, it has visibilit; Sikhi is Nirakaar, it has to be experienced.

    I do not think there is any decline it Sikhism, the decline may be in its instutions and leadership, which can always be improved. Sikhi is as it was.

    With Love and Respect for all.

    Amarpal Singh
     
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  8. max314

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    Quality over quantity, I say :}{}{}:
     
  9. kds1980

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    Let me also quote a famous sikh quote

    Raj Bina naa dharam chale Dharam bina sab dale male hain

    And you cannot have Raj with quality only
     
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  10. max314

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    Guru Gobind Singh also said he was here to watch the "jagat tamasha".

    Humanity's insanity is part of its programming.

    The Guru Gobind Singh quote you provided was absolutely bang on. But it's not necessarily saying that this ideal is ever going to be achieved.

    Also, the religion is going to end up being propagated by people who are fuelled by their egos and who lack a genuine understanding of it - the people who believe themselves to be 'in charge' of Sikkhi. If that is the case, then who is to say which is the lesser of two evils? Indeed, who is to say that evil isn't part of the natural order of things.

    We humans scurry in a desperate attempt to produce Heaven on Earth and to tell other people what to do. But we rarely stop to ask why.

    The answers are always hidden between the lines.
     
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  11. kds1980

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    The quote is supposed to be said By Guru Gobind singh but there is no evidence of it.
    But on the other hand we have seen the religions that captured power Flourished the most
    Many peaceful ,spiritual paths were started but with time they got assimilated,or died by other religions.The sikhism we have today is because of immense sacrifice and the ultimate victory of khalsa in 18th and start of 19th century O/W we all have been sitting on islamphilosophy.net discussing islam
     
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  12. kds1980

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    Globalisation basicaly means westernisation.Many people these days beleive that in order to to be forward thinking person they need to copy the west.
    Just look at entire world .Isn't it strange that now people of many countries wear pant coat the dress of west abandoning their own clothes because they believe that by wearing them they will become modern.

    as Far as sikhism is concerned the biggest problem of sikhism is its unique outward appearance .many times The one who give up their appearance also start doing
    non sikh practices like going to mandir and some even start calling themself as hindu's
     
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  13. spnadmin

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    Kanwardeep Singh ji

    I understand what you are saying. But globalization is not going to go away as I said earlier. The only way to stop globalization/westernization within a culture is to resort to the tactics of Wahabi muslims or Taliban. Use forceful measures. Which do not work anyway unless you are prepared to terrorize or execute people who get in your way. There is a lot of hypocrisy too with people who try to create a cocoon around their traditional cultures by enforcing traditional ways. They drive Toyota trucks into the desert, pack lap top computers, use cell phones, hack into the Internet and try to unwind the banks and national security of developed countries, wire money to purchase the most advanced weaponry through elaborate 3rd and 4th party networks, spend time and money figuring out how to hijack airplanes and bring down the Twin Towers (also let us not forget Tanzania and Mumbai). They use all that western culture has made available. Then they stone women on the mere rumor of misconduct, promote honor killing, blind you, cut off your hands, etc. etc. in the name of preserving traditional culture. I see a bit of irony in that.

    There are creative and constructive ways to encourage the continuation of Sikh traditions, and some have put them into action. The way to get out of a dilemma is to walk through it, to think and to educate. Bemoaning the loss of tradition has never worked. Suppressing modernity doesn't work and creates monsters.
     
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  14. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Narayanjot ji

    Muslims also live in India and they don't do things what talibans do but still they are not as much influenced by western propaganda neither by Hindu's.As a community they are getting stronger and stronger so the ways of Talibans are not the only way.Though I belive that minority religions do need to maintain some kind of orthodox attituide rather than adopting liberal culture of west O/W their death is inevitable

    Second thing I want to say is after 9/11 the turbanphobia by the west is also responsible
    Punjabi sikhs in India are known to be the biggest migrators to west but now with turban
    they find it more and more difficult. Its easy for a western born educated sikh to sue his employer if he is discriminating him but for Punjab's sikh who parents are in debt ,who have to maintain his family may not have much choice but just to give up turban
     
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  15. harbansj24

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    Sikhs can be part of globalization, modernisation, and yet can keep their identity provided they learn to take responsibility for their actions and do not whine and blame all and sundry for their own problems.
    This also, I humbly believe is the essence of SIkhism.
    Why talk about Sikhs abroad being under pressure to give up their turban. But what sort of pressure are Sikhs in Punjab? Why are they so rapidly and willingly giving up their identity here?
    Is it because the so called "modernity" teaches us that nothing is sacrosanct and everything can be questioned? This then rapidly becomes a license to do as one pleases and no rules are applicable at all? One has only rights but no duties? One has a right to be a Sikh but no obligation look like a Sikh?
     
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  16. vsgrewal48895

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    Dear Harbans Ji,

    Your point of "responsibility for their actions" is the essence of Sikhi, which no body want to talk about. Most of us try to spin it one way or the other and shirk to talk about their actions.
    ਕਥਨੀ ਬਦਨੀ ਕਹਨੁ ਕਹਾਵਨੁ ਸਮਝਿ ਪਰੀ ਤਉ ਬਿਸਰਿਓ ਗਾਵਨੁ ਕਹਤ ਕਬੀਰ ਪੰਚ ਜੋ ਚੂਰੇ ਤਿਨ ਤੇ ਨਾਹਿ ਪਰਮ ਪਦੁ ਦੂਰੇ
    Kathnī banī kahan kahāvan. Samaj parī a¬o bisri¬o gāvan. Kaha Kabīr panc jo cūrė. Ŧin ė nāhi param pa ūrė.

    All preaching, ranting and raving, and arguing, are forgotten when one comes to understand. Says Kabir, those who conquer the five demons of the body passions (ਇੰਦੀ੍), for them the state of supreme dignity is never far. -----Kabir, Raag Rasa, AGGS, Page, 478-12

    Cordially,

    Virinder
     
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  17. Lee

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    Is Sikhi in decline?

    I really dont think it is you know. I converted abotu 8 or 9 years ago now, and when I did I remember going to the massive Gurdwara in Southall for an all night kirtan thing. I saw thousands of Sikhs there two other white people I spyed.

    Now 8-9 years later I have seen many white Sikhs, I saw a young man on the train the other week, short hair, bearded, reading a book about Sikhi. He had that look on his face, the 'thinking deeply' look, yeah you know the one mean.

    Is modern life eroding the Sikh apperance?

    Yes I don't think any of us can deny this one.

    Now is this a bad thing?

    I'm going to say yes and no. The thing is that Guru ji has indeed given his Khalsa instructions on how to look, and of course Khalsa simply cannot gainsay this at all. However how many of us have taken Amrit?


    I have not, I hope to one day(god willing), but the point is I belive that there is actualy a very very tiny minority of people that reach God, from all religions, and from Sikhi. I also think that each of us needs to be a little selfish.

    I mean of course that we should concentrate on our own path to God, and allow others the same curtersy.

    So to me, wheter Sikhi as a group thrives or diminishes is of little concern, my focous is my own striving for God. It is not up to me whether or not I will make it, and so if you wear your turban or not, or cut your hair or not, or are hypocritical or not, is also of little concern to me.

    In the end are you a worthwhile person, with turban or not, with Kesh or not.
     
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  18. spnadmin

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    I don't disagree. But I do have a problem with understanding this problem in a simplistic way -- as is the norm -- and then moaning and groaning about the loss of culture.

    BTW - Turbaned Sikhs are thriving here in the face of discrimination because of a never say die attitude. That is what is missing in the dialog. What is that special constellation of qualities that make Sikhs and Sikhism something brilliant and adaptable, in the face of every adversity. Figure that out. Distill it. And then determine what it takes to teach those qualities to each generation.

    It is just my failing -- but whining and moaning has always been a turn off for me.
     
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  19. kds1980

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    In the end Turbaned sikhs are human too .Poor people always become worst victim of racism.That's why we see victims as delivery boys,truck drivers etc.For how long you keep living in fear of being attacked? People shouting abusing? so only mentally very strong persons at ground level end up wearing turban which are going to be very few.
     
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  20. spnadmin

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    Thanks for pointing this out. Those who are struggling to make a living have a lot of pressure on them. Delivery boys, taxi drivers, truck drivers are out in the public all the time and face discrimination more than most.
     
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  21. Bmandur

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    :happykaur:Gurfateh Aman Singh Ji YES Most of the People do not Follow the ideology of Guru Nanak Dev ji
    ...these days people do not follow the ideology of Guru Nanak and his message in our practical life, which is the cause of decline of the
    religion...

    Finally there is a realization that Sikhism is on a decline.The Reasons?

    To begin with, today there is the very question of Sikh identity, and to define who is a Sikh. This time there is no government interference in religious affair of the Sikhs,no outside movement or influence but the decline has stemmed from within the Sikhism.

    Many young Sikhs, find the turban a bother. It gets in the way when they take to sports & swimming. Washing & drying the long hair is time-consuming, as is the morning ritual of winding seven yards of cloth around the head. It is hot and uncomfortable.

    In the end,there is also a question of fashion. They feel smarter without it.

    Sikh spiritual leaders express dismay at the rapidity with which a new
    generation of young men are trimming their hair and abandoning the
    turban, the most conspicuous emblem of the Sikh faith.Indeed, as the defining symbol of the Sikh tradition declines, its hard not to think of the core of the religion as declining as well.

    They have adopted,the globalization probably has had a greater impact, European habits: fast food, pubs and clubs. They want to show they are modern. They are willingly & votuntarily forgetting their own culture. Another 20 years will pass and the world wont have any more
    Sikhs in turbans.

    There is this terrible, misplaced urge to merge with the rest of the
    world, said Patwant Singh, a historian and the author of The Sikhs
    (John Murray, 1999).

    The Sikhs are practicing rites and ritual inconsistent with Sikhism, Including
    the practice of caste system into Gurdwaras, secretively smoking drugs &
    publicly Drinking, Idol worshiping and other rituals not followed by the Sikh Gurus .

    Much of the blame is to be shared by half-educated,Ignorant priestly class also called ironically 'Gianijis' who are spreading superstitions & falsehoods to earn tax-free income.

    The following News item speaks more:
    "Groups of Sikh priests have protested an order that could disbar men
    under the age of 30 and over 60 years to be employed in gurdwaras
    across Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.SGPC president
    Avtar Singh Makkar had recently endorsed the new recruitment rules for
    granthis and paathis (hymn singers) following complaints against
    younger priests. These ranged from moral turpitude to several instances of
    devotee collections in gurdwaras. Insisting there could be no compromise on maintaining the sanctity of the shrines, Mr Makkar called for a list of all
    Gurdwara employees below 30 years and ordered a thorough verification of each mans antecedents.The committee has also sought a fresh appraisal of each priests character, conduct, his knowledge of the holy scripture and
    efficiency in performing various religious rites."
    Courtesy :
    Gurfateh
     

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