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Is there Evidence for Life Beyond Death?

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by Astroboy, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. Astroboy

    Astroboy Malaysia
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    ਨਾਮ ਤੇਰੇ ਕੀ ਜੋਤਿ ਲਗਾਈ (Previously namjap)
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  3. Kanwaljit Singh

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    In any case we cremate the body within a day or a week at max. So the post 'death' mind doesn't get much to do. But I heard of an experiment in which a dying man was placed in a glass case. And after he died, the case cracked and broke down.
     
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  4. Annie

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    One of my favorite quotes, Astroboy ji:

    "There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy."
    - William Shakespeare, from the play Hamlet
     
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  5. BhagatSingh

    BhagatSingh Canada
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  6. aristotle

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    There may be some life after death, even the heaven or hell may exist, but this isn't of any concern for the Sikh. As Bhagat Kabir opines in the Sri Guru Granth Sahib,
    "What to talk of the heaven or the hell? Saints have rejected both of them. We don't debate with anyone but enjoy the bliss obtained through the Guru."
    Just remember the Guru, live in peace and enjoy everyday life. What else is heaven?
     
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  7. Ajuni

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    Evidence That Life Goes Beyond Death?

    Sat Sri Akal to all,
    I have a few questions to ask about sikhi. I am new to sikhi, my family is hindu and that was the faith i was born into, but I always had questions that were not able to be answered. Many of my friends are sikhi and introduced me to the philosophy, whenever I went to the gurdwara i felt the most peace. The rituals and 100s of gods in hinduism was quite confusing, and they were draped with gold and linens. It all did not make sense to me, as to how anyone knew what these characters looked like. To me hinduism was a fantasy like philosophy that got carried away into something else, and prophets god mixed up into gods.
    I always believed in god as one, god as the universe, and god within us. whatever we imagine is our creation and gods will. I then slowly started to read the guru granth this year, and to my surprise it fit most of my beliefs. This was a brilliant awakening for myself, the only thing is that I am but the single sikh follower in my family. Once i found SPN it gave some relief as to being able to receive answers.

    What is guru? is guru god? is guru the universe? is guru the teacher within us? is guru the 10 prophets?

    What is fateh? I recall hearing it in gurdwara, and now i see it hear on SPN, ie. wahe guru fateh, khalsa fateh. Is the maatlab to be forever? or long live?

    My next question is in regards to karas, to me the kara symbolizes something so beautiful. that god is one and that the universe is forever connecting. I know one is able to receive a kara at gurdwara, but there are also places like sikhkaras.com which have karas that are engraved with the mool mantra and such. If a person was to purchase a kara from sikhkaras.com would one have to take the kara to gurdwara to be blessed? Also when wearing a kara is one able to eat meat? I know one is not to put toxics such as smoke and alcohol into their bodys. Thought the thing is i see people who wear karas and ingest meat, but I also see people where karas and ingest alcohol. This confuses me, i know it is that persons own path and prerogative. I am wondering, because I do not want to take away from the symbolism if i were to wear one.

    I know that a sikhi is someone who reads gurbani whether they have taken amrit or not. Is gurbani reading only to be read at 5 in the morning? this seems a bit ritualistic to me? or is this just a guideline and gurbani can be read later in the day, so long as you have bathed?

    Also wondering, would it be disrespectful if i read my ipod in gurdwara (i have a gurbani app which translates some words which i am unfamiliar with) I do not want to go to the gurdwara to offend anyone.

    Also I have cut my hair before, and I have many sikhi friends who cut their hair. This confuses me, I would love to grow my hair our to be long and luscious, but I am curious as to whether I am able to get very small trims in order to keep it healthy. Those sikhi who do cut their hair, what does this mean? are they going against the Guru? are they reversing all their long worked gurbani readings.

    This is hard for me, because i am going against my family in a way, and most of the time my father is very cynical towards me. But i know that I am on the right path and that this is where I should be. Is there any tips you can give a new sikhi disciple. Our family has annual poojas, but I know that Sikhi hold phat in the home. would it be unrealistic for me to want to bless our home with the readings of the guru granth sahib ji if there is a pandit coming to recite from the hindu scriptures. I am not sure what to do, because I feel this is my home too. Please help me.

    I am very excited to hear from my new Sikhi friends.

    Thank you
    Sat Sri Akal
    Sikhipyar
     
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  8. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    Sikhipyarji

    Welcome Bhenji,

    A very moving post, very enlightened post, my own view is that what matters most is what is going on inside your head, not blessing houses, hair, karas, or indeed anything else. The move you have made from many gods and traditions and ritual, to the one eternal god is enough for the moment, the outward signs of sikhi will present themselves to you over time, do not make the mistake of respraying your car till you have sorted the engine out!

    Once the engine is firing away, the physical aspects of sikhism will be a joy to carry out, a symbol of your relationship with the creator.

    You have raised questions that I will let someone more wise than myself answer, but your house is in your head, and that is the only house you need to worry about being blessed

    good luck, you are on a very exciting road welcomemunda
     
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  9. dalbirk

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    Dear Sikhipyar Ji ,
    Your list is quite long , I shall try to cover as much I can briefly :
    1. The Guru of Sikhs is the " SHABAD /WORD / KNOWLEDGE " as enshrined in holy Sri Guru Granth Sahib. The ten Gurus gave us the SHABAD as it was recieved by them from the Almighty , not only that the core ideology of Sikhi as described in Moolmantar " Ik Oankar , Satnaam , Karta Purakh , Nirbhao , Nirvair , Akal Moorat , Ajooni , Sahi Bhung , Gurparsaad " but also lived life fully in accordance with that ideology , even gave life to upheld that ideology as Fifth Guru , Ninth Guru , Tenth Guru ( who gave his whole family ) to serve their lives as practical examples to how Sikhs should lead their lives , collected that SHABAD from wherever / whosoever it belonged & included it holy Sri Guru Granth Sahib to whom we bow each day of our lives .
    2. Fateh is a greeting like Hindus say Raam ,Raam , Muslims say Salaam A Leikum . " Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa , Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh" meaning " Sikh / Khalsa belongs to Almighty & since he belongs to Almighty so each victory is naturally his because Khalsa belongs to the Almighty .
    3. Kara acts as a reminder to Sikh that he has done some promises to Guru Gobind Singh ji whatever he does with his right hand should remind him of that promise & he should not do anything which is not in accordance with those promises . As for meat it is perfectly allowed in Sikh Rehat Maryada as long it is not ritually sacrificed like Kosher , Halaal etc .
    http://www.sgpc.net/rehat_maryada/section_six.html . As for liqour it is strictly prohibted in Sikhism . Whatever any individual do should not be judged as acceptable for whole community .
    4. A Sikh hair is for his individual/independent identity ( uniq ueness ) an order of Tenth Guru should be upholded . Under no circumstances can a Sikh cut his hair .
    5. For any other clarifications , refer to Sikh Rehat Maryada
    http://www.sgpc.net/sikhism/sikh-dharma-manual.html


    3.
     
  10. Ishna

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    Sat Sri Akal Sikhipyar Ji

    Welcome to SPN and to Sikhi! cheerleader You sure have packed a lot of questions into one post!

    Sikhi is wide and vast and a huge learning curve. Try to put whatever you think you know about spirituality and religion out of your mind when you're learning about Sikhi. I understand Hindu dharma is very vibrant and complex, and you might find yourself trying to make Sikhi more complicated than it actually is (plenty of Sikhs, myself included, fall into that trap all the time). Just something to be aware of as you learn.

    Here's my opinion on some of your questions (your questions are in blue):

    What is Guru?: this is a big one, I can't answer it adequately, you're best bet is to Google it and read, read, read. Someone more knowledgeable than me may reply here.

    Is guru god? Yes
    is guru the universe? Yes
    is guru the teacher within us? Yes
    is guru the 10 prophets? In Sikhi we don't call them prophets, we call them Gurus. Guru Nanak is the 1st Guru through to Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji.

    Sikh means disciple or student, and Guru means teacher. Something to ponder.

    Karas: To my knoweldge karas and any of the other kakkars are not specially blessed in any way. How can a mere human bless anything at all? They are just symbols, the blessing is in understanding them and applying them in your life. I may be wrong.

    Sikhs show utmost respect to Gurbani (the text within SGGS), and for some a kara with Gurbani inscribed on it is disrespectful. Others have no problem. Personally, my kara is plain. The choice is yours.

    A thought like "when I wear my kara I shouldn't eat meat" is moot. A Sikh is a Sikh with or without his/her kakkars. Waheguru is everywhere and ever present and closer to your than your own breath. If you take off your kara you are still just as bound by Sikhi as if you were wearing it.

    The meat debate within Sikhi is a hot one and I won't discuss it here.

    Anyone can wear a kara and do anything they want, so you need to be careful... not every turban-wearing, kara-wearing, kacchera-wearing Sikh is a pure Sikh (very few in fact).

    I agree with Harry bhaji -- don't rush into wearing a symbol. I only just got mine a few months ago!

    I know that a sikhi is someone who reads gurbani whether they have taken amrit or not. Is gurbani reading only to be read at 5 in the morning? this seems a bit ritualistic to me? or is this just a guideline and gurbani can be read later in the day, so long as you have bathed?

    Hmm, no, a Sikh is someone who reads Gurbani AND learns about it AND applies the teachings in their life. Anyone can read Gurbani! It takes more to be a Sikh. The Sikh community can be roughly divided into regular Sikhs (students) and then Khalsa Sikhs (ones who have been through the amrit sanchar ceremony).

    Gurbani can be read in any place at any time with the body in any state, however it is most conductive to a spiritual mindset when the environment is quiet and the body is clean and not distressed. Sikhs will generally rise early in the morning (before dawn), clean their bodies and contemplate Waheguru, and recite japji Sahib and some other prayers. In the evening they will recite Rehras and before sleep Sohila. But you can build up to this discipline. Any Gurbani can be read at any time.

    Sikhs will generally cover their heads when they read Gurbani as a respectful practice. I like to do so as it helps me "get in the mood" and makes me feel humble and joyful. Sometimes I won't cover my head, like when I have Gurbani set as the wallpaper on my work PC. It is personal.

    Also wondering, would it be disrespectful if i read my ipod in gurdwara (i have a gurbani app which translates some words which i am unfamiliar with) I do not want to go to the gurdwara to offend anyone.

    As long as it's not making sounds I can't imagine you'll upset anyone. Be considerate of those around you. Don't let the ipod distract you from the experience. It's a pity your Gurdwara Sahib doesn't have a projector with Gurmukhi/English/Romanisation. Maybe see if there is another Gurdwara nearby which does - it will help!

    I am curious as to whether I am able to get very small trims in order to keep it healthy. It's best if you don't tamper with your hair at all.

    Those sikhi who do cut their hair, what does this mean? are they going against the Guru? It means they have made the choice to cut their hair. It is not for us to judge them, but for us to read and learn and decide the right actions for ourselves. If you believe you should keep your hair because that was the command Guru Gobind Singh Ji gave to his Sikhs, then it is natural to obey it. I encourage you to keep your hair but ultimately it's your choice.

    are they reversing all their long worked gurbani readings. I'm not sure it works like that. Gurbani is not something you are rewarded simply for reading. You are rewarded for reading, understanding, acting on and finding boundless joy in Gurbani. You lose if you read, understand, and then don't act on it.

    But i know that I am on the right path and that this is where I should be. Congratulations and hang in there, Sikhi has much to offer the dedicated student!

    Is there any tips you can give a new sikhi disciple. Read Gurbani with an open mind, read the posts here at SPN, be careful of people who talk to much about rules, rituals, and doing things which don't seem to make sense. Test what you hear against Gurbani and the Sikh Rehat Maryada (Dalbirk linked to it in his post above).

    Our family has annual poojas, but I know that Sikhi hold phat in the home. I'm sorry, what is "phat"?

    would it be unrealistic for me to want to bless our home with the readings of the guru granth sahib ji if there is a pandit coming to recite from the hindu scriptures. See my comment above, no human can bless anything with any ritual, to my understanding. You carry the blessing within you by learning and behaving like a Sikh.

    I am not sure what to do, because I feel this is my home too. Please help me.
    Relax, read Gurbani, watch what your family does as an observer. I can't really offer much because I haven't been in your position, sorry!

    Good luck on your journey!

    Gurfateh
    Ishna
     
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  11. Harry Haller

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    Ishna Bhenji

    Beautiful reply, well worded, excellent points, I am glad someone more wise than me answered that , if there is one message I could take from it, it would be if you are ritualising sikhi, then you have lost already, it is the message that is important,

    understanding and application, good words sis
     
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  12. passingby

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    Welcome
    My quick advise.
    # Do not try to do too many things too fast. Go slow and take time. Be easy on yourself. Enlightenment cannot be hurried :)
    # Avoid outward symbols and display of any kind. This will only create problems for you while you are still new and on unsure footing.
    # Do not discuss or debate religious issue with others. Keep it inside your head and for personal growth. Do not try to prove yourself right. That's an ego trap.
    # Do not try to find all the answers. Accept that their will be some issue which will be difficult to decide.
    # Avoid confrontation or conflict. Be respectful to your family member when it comes to their views against yours.

    AND
    #Read up ! Gurbani and Guru Nanak...Guru Gobind Singh are enchanting. Know more about these from reliable, first hand sources.
    # Remember, Sikhism is about going for the essence, not the outer display. The K's will come along on the way. Let the process be gradual.
     
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  13. Joginder Singh Foley

    Joginder Singh Foley United Kingdom
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    Sat Siri Akal Sikhipyar-ji When i came to Sikhi i found it best to learn at your own speed that you are comfortable with and in my expreience you will allways find plenty of your Sikh brothers and sisters who will be more and ready to help you with any problems with your knowledge and practice of Sikhi You know your are on the right path just keep at it one step at a time one way or another Vaheguru will help you through your life as a Sikh remember you have millions of Sikh bros and sista's out there



    :happysingh:
     
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  14. spnadmin

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    Two thread on the same subject, with a duplicate comment by Sikhipyar ji, have been merged. The thread title has been edited. The thread has been moved to a more appropriate part of the forum.
     
  15. Ajuni

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    Sat Sri Akal
    Thank you all for the wonderful replies, you have assisted me a great deal.
    What is Khalsa? is Khalsa the group, the order, the guidelines?
    Also I was curious to know, if a woman were to take Amrit, would they have to begin to cover their hair at that time. Or once they are ready in their life, to do so.
    What is the purpose of Amrit? Is it the promise of yourself and to abide by the 5 kakkars? Do women also carry a sword? If people are born into a Sikhi family, have they already taken amrit when they were born? I am sorry, so many questions. Also what is Ang?
    I am eager to hear your responses.

    P.S. Ishna, "phat" (sorry I may have spelt it incorrectly) is when the Guru Granth Sahib is brought into the home and the Sewavaar (also may be incorrect spelling) read it over a period of 2 to 3 days. I have been to a few that my sikhi friends parents held, but this could possibly be something that is only practiced in canada? I am unsure. Because i have a hindi background, i'd be able to understand what was being said, but still had trouble deciphering most of it. Though whenever i listened to it, I felt at peace.

    Thank you all very much!
    Sat Sri Akal
    Sikhipyar :happykudi:
     
  16. spnadmin

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    There is no particular requirement for a woman to cover her head, baptized or not baptized, except in Gurdwara. Some women chose as their preference to wear a head covering all or most of the time. Among members of the sect AKJ, there is a sectarian rehat that does required women to wear a head covering.

    Amrit is how we declare our committment to become Khalsa, to undertake a deeper and more rigorous practice of Sikhi. This particular question, unlike the others you ask, deserves a more personal reply from SPN members. Therefore I won't myself go into depth.

    When women take Amrit they carry the 5 kakkars, including kanga or the wooden comb and the kirpan or dagger. Most of the time you won't see anyone wearing a sword except on ceremonial occasions. The other kakkars, borne by amritdhari women are: kara, kesh and kechera or the steel bracelet, keeping hair, and a special undergarment worn instead of panties or undershorts.

    When someone is born into a Sikh family, he/she not Khalsa and must therefore decide whether he/she wishes to become baptized, or take amrit.

    Ang means Limb. It designates the page number of any shabad in Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji is our Guru. Therefore Ang number signifies a Limb of the Guru. It is not merely a page but a limb of Guruji.
     
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  17. Ajuni

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    VaheGuru Ji Ki Khalsa VaheGuru Ji Ki Fateh
    Sat Sri Akal
    Much appreciation for your reply SPNadmin

    Thank you for clarifying, I was unsure whether taking Amrit would mean to cover one's head with a turban (woman). As I do not think that I am ready for that type of commitment in my life, and I would not want to commit to something that I may be back out of later in life.
    Is an Amritdhari a person who has taken Amrit and who has fufilled all the necessary requirements (such as covering the kesh with turban) and is then considered a part of the Khalsa.
    The Khalsa is a group of Amritdhari persons? correct?
    I am just trying to increase my understanding the best way I can, and that is to ask all the questions that pop into my mind. I hope this thread is able to help others new to sikhi and on the path to being one with themselves.
    This is all great to know, because I myself would like to commit myself to becomign closer to the Khalsa, which is then in turn taking Amrit. This would mean that I would be entitled to read gurbani and recite japji Sahib daily at the early hours of the morning.
    Must the Kanga be a wooden comb? or may it be of plastic or a store bought brush that I keep within my purse. I believe once I increase in age I would very much consider covering my kesh at all times. In order to take Amrit, I would have to denounce shaving of my armpits and legs? correct. I am not so fond of armpit hair, but i do intend on growing my head hair. I hope that I can gain knowledge in order to help others on their path to Sikhi.

    Sikhi is not a religion, it is a philosphy - a philosphy of denouncing religions and understanding that god is one and god is within. simply to praise god and constantly remember the guru within at all times in order to bring inner peace and wisdom. I think people get mixed up in the fact that it is not a religion, but hinduism is also not a religion, it is a philosphy that over many years has become skewed and over ritualised bringing itself to become what could then be called a religion?

    But what is religion? and what is philosphy? what is the difference or similarity between these two words. Is religion the word we as society have coined to describe an order of routine that philosphy has adapted?

    Does anyone know the basics of kundalini yoga? or how to release one's kundalini coil, and embrace the energy it offers. Has anyone achieved this uncoiling? If so what was it that you experienced, and how was it significant in your life at that time? Could meditation alone release ones kundalini?

    Does Sikhi embrace the notion of auras, and then person could have a positive or negative aura. Or that people can see auras? is this the release of ones kundalini? Are the 7 chakras of importance in Sikhi?

    I am extremely thankful to have found Sikhphilosphy.net and give my profound thanks to all that have assisted and are assisting me on my path to my enlightenment. You are ensuring my journey is one filled with knowledge. May you all gain a step to your own enlightenment.

    Sat Sri Akal
    Sikhipyarkudihug
     
  18. spnadmin

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    sikhipyar ji

    You are asking a lot of questions all in one thread. Why not break these up and begin new threads for individual questions, other than those related to Amrit.

    Yes Except I have already explained that a woman does not need to cover kesh or wear a turban even if she is Amritdhari. This is a personal choice not a mandate.

    I am going to say yes to this, however, it is controversial whether Khalsa initially referred only to amritdhari at the first Vaisakhi. The question left over is whether Guru Gobind singh was speaking only to those who had taken Amrit Sanchar on that day.

    You run into sticky points. For example, we greet one another with Waheguru ji ka Khalsa, Waheguru ji ki Fateh whether we are amritdhari or not. The greeting sounds inclusive and is not restricted only to amritdhari Sikhs. Discussions go back and forth as to who the khalsa include?


    The comb must be wooden. And you wear it, you don't keep it in your purse. The kakkars are markers of your identity as a Sikh. So if you keep kanga in your purse, what does that accomplish? Of course Singhs keep their kangas tucked into their turbans, so there is a discrepancy here. Women would wear kanga openly.

    Here is where you don't want to get bogged down in technicalities. Don't put it in your purse. :grinningkaur:


    Once you get started keeping kesh, armpit hair gradually becomes a nonissue, in my personal experience, as does hair on the lip or legs. For some people the keeping of hair is a source of psychological and social stress. At some point it becomes important to be convinced that you made a decision to keep hair voluntarily, not by force, and you just stick with it. Keeping hair means you do not dishonor you hair without exception. My understanding only.

    Once amritdhari, I would hope that you do help others on their path to Sikhi. Too often too many think as khalsa they are an exclusive club. That is always so sad.
     
  19. spnadmin

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    We are well off topic now. So please start new threads on the questions that are left over. Thanks.
     
  20. Ajuni

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    Thank you SPNadmin, my apologies. :happykudi:
     
  21. passingby

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    Hi sikhipyar,

    I think you need to take it slowly. Take in some basic information and then let it mature inside.
    Thats a pitfall right there!
    Remember we cannot share what we do not have! Trying to help others when we ourselves have'nt even started the journey?

    I suggest you just take up one small thing and do it for a while. Like reciting japji, or Rehraas Sahib. Don't overload yourself with too much information! I am sure that this would be detrimental.
    Part of the journey on a spiritual path is about knowing how human mind works. And one of the important things one has to learn is how thoughts create sensations in mind. The sensations or excitement are movements of mind and by its very nature excitement is detrimental to spiritual progress. The hills don't exist without valleys alongwith. Excitement is also followed by a crash.
    Even in the field of religion and spirituality it is possible and in fact very common to create targets and desires similar to what one does in materialistic world. One needs to beware of these.
     
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