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Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by Neutral Singh, Dec 16, 2004.
Institution of Langar in Sikhism
Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru JI KI Fateh
Guru Ka Langgar....one of the pillars of Sikhism...great leveller of barriers and a great fence builder among peoples.. Those who eat together stay together..
When Guru Ji began this....it used to be First Langgar..then Sangat. Even great people like Emperor Akbar was refused permisiion to have darshan of Guru Amardass Ji..UNTIL he had sat down with every body else and had langgar.
Now a days we have had a few changes... one is that Langgar is served at the CONCLUSION of the samagam/programme....this means we have REVERSED Guru Ji's Langgar-sangat to "Sangat-langgar"...in other words if TODAY Emperor Akbar were to come for DARSHAN..he would be able to have DARSHAN without partaking of Langgar.
Secondly in the more affluent countries, including Malaysia, the Guru ka Langgar is provided by Sikhs, cooked by Sikhs, Eaten By Sikhs..and the MENU has grown beyond just simple daal and roti to dozens of types of foods/sweetmeats/ etc...so much so that langgar is rapidly moving out of reach of poor sikhs. It is common for people to ask around " who is sponsoring today's langgar ??" and if the person is a rich man...then the crowd is bigger as "better food" is expected....and if the person is a poor man..the comments go like this..."oiyeh dal roti ghareh vee khaan lahn geh..rehan de gurdwareh jaan nu... Simple dall roti is available at home also why bother to go all the way to the Gurdawra !!
IN our locality..there is a SERIOUS SHORTAGE of langgar sewadaars...to cook...especailly ladies to make rotis. At times it is the large horde of illegal immigrants "desi boys" who are roped in to make rotian/praunthehs..The parbhandaks are seriously thinking of employing paid sewadaars/ maids etc to help cook langgar. What a shame. Certain gurdwaras already have paid sewadaars doing this and others employ "professional caterers" who are hired by the family from outside restaurants etc......BUT do all the langgar preparations in the Gurdwara kitchen
It is sad but true... when Gurdwaras were Katchheh ( not brick/stone buildings)..the SIKHS were PAKKEY...now we have Gurdwaras that are Pakkey and multi million dollar multi storeyed creations....but the SIKHS are KATCHHEY...in olden times besides cooking, people had to bring in firewood/dig large Churran ( holes in the ground for cooking fires)..and we had ample sewadaars who also GUNNH the Atta by the 100 Kilos with their hands...NOW we have Gas/Electricity, large modern kitchens with modern appliances, atta gunnhing machines, etc etc and we have NO SEWADAARS. The SAME two or three sewadaars keep turning up every sunday...week in and week out...just like the SAME two three Pathis keep turning up for Akhand Paath duties at every Gurpurab....everybody else is just too busy and only turn up at the last minute to EAT and go home ( packing back also is the norm)
Now people seldom "borrow" bhandey from the gurdwara for home smagamas... everything is arranged by the caterers...food bought from the restaurant is termed "Guru ka langgar"...
Are these "improvements" we are proud of....should we be proud ?? I dont know.
Love for All
I don't see the problems in the advancements of technology in preparing the food, but there is obviously a problem with not enough people coming out to help.