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Maryada clarification on makeup / jewelry

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by Harkiran Kaur, Mar 13, 2014.

  1. Harkiran Kaur

    Harkiran Kaur Canada
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    In recent times, there have been several stories of women who are the epitome of Sikhi... Amritdharis, who choose to follow the rehet maryada to the letter and not remove their facial (or any other) hairs. Balpreet Kaur comes to mind as does the young lady in this linked story, Harnaam Kaur ( http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...ition-causing-excessive-hair-grows-beard.html )

    My question is this...

    There are plenty of people who say once you do Amrit, you can not wear any jewelry or makeup at all anymore. I am just wondering where they get this from? I have read the full SGPC rehet maryada and could not find anything...
    In fact the only reference to jewelry was concerning 'pierced ears'. Yet there are MANY who would condemn those who are amritdhari and wear a necklace or a bit of mascara for example....

    Now you wonder why I mentioned the above 2 ladies... well, on several occasions I have noted Balpreet Kaur Ji wearing necklaces... and in the article I linked above concerning Harnaam Kaur Ji, she openly admits to painting her nails, wearing mascara etc in order to still feel feminine in light of her facial hair.

    So these two Sikh ladies who so much as I can tell, follow the SGPC Rehet to the T, would be condemned by a bunch of Sikhs for wearing makeup or jewelry?

    Is it only certain Sikh 'sects' who ban jewelry and makeup? Is it really 'unsikh' of a woman to embrace feminine things like jewelry and a bit of makeup? (I am not talking about caking the stuff on but just a bit to accent the eyes or something)

    Myself, after I do Amrit, I'd like to be able to wear just a tiny bit of mascara or liner just because I am so naturally pale that I actually look ill most of the time... if I can bring my eyes out a bit and wear a bit of light tint on my lips (aka gloss not bright lipstick) I don't look so sickly. So would I be a walking contradiction, if I was Amritdhari, wearing a turban, and also a tiny bit of makeup??

    I was actually trying to learn to go completely without... I've kind of got used to people asking me if I am sick at work all the time... but I was trying to go without only because of these people who say its so bad of a sikh woman to wear any makeup or jewelry at all!

    These same people have quoted both of the above women as being 'true' Sikh women to me... I wonder if they knew that both wear jewelry and some makeup - at least sometimes??
     
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  3. aristotle

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    Matter closed....:D
     
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  4. Harkiran Kaur

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    I agree... at least in my head... but there seems to be enough people who say its wrong to wear either, that I a just wondering where they get it from??

    I understand dressing somewhat modestly... but it's possible to dress modest and wear makeup that is very natural looking... And I don't think a necklace or a couple of gold bangles would ever hurt the Sikh image...

    I came across this post on another site... the photo that was posted I will attach, and the text that accompanied it I will paste below. It was contributed by a Kaur... so just looking for opinions. I agree that the image she drew on the left is over the top and trashy looking... however I have seen many Kaurs wearing sleeveless salwar suits that looked perfectly fine, and also some modest makeup and a couple of gold bangles... and it looked nothing like the image she is trying to portray on the left.

    ------- Pasted Text -------

    To All My Turbaned Kaurs

    My dearest and most beloved sisters this is a message from my heart, one that I mean with much love, sincerity and respect. This message is simply that we need to represent and respect our turbaned beauty properly.

    When we take Amrit we are told that we are now a part of the Khalsa Panth and that Dhan Siri Guru Gobind Singh Ji is our father and Mata Sahib Kaur is our mother. When we choose to take another step and tie a turban we are representing not only our beloved father but the entire Khalsa Panth. As daughters of Guru Gobind Singh Ji and women of the Khalsa there are certain expectations we must adhere to especially once we choose to wear his crown.

    Just as you would never want to disgrace your worldly father, you should never want to disgrace or do beadbi to our Pita Ji Guru Gobind Singh. Remember, we are the shining jewels on his turban; we are his pride and joy! Our father dressed like a King and likewise he would want us, his princesses, to dress well BUT be modest and represent the physical saroop of a Singhni according to Gurbani and Rehat. Imagine sister, if you were called to Pita Ji’s court, what would you wear and how would you want to look in front of him? My dearest sisters, if you wouldn’t wear it in front of Guru Maharaj then you shouldn’t wear it in general.

    Having said this my beautiful Kaurs I want you to know that I understand, oh I understand how hard it is to keep your kes and how hard it is to not want to wear makeup or be able to dress in the latest fashions just like every girl. But you must remember, YOU ARE NOT EVERY GIRL. You are special. You are a KAUR. You are the future of the Khalsa Panth. And if we want a strong future generation we must first make ourselves strong! I understand we must be loving and nurturing to each other however we must also take a stand on what is right according to Gurbani. I will never ever look down on or treat a turbaned Kaur who shaves or wears make up any different than a turbaned Kaur who doesn’t. However, I will not advocate that image by saying that it’s an ok thing to do either. I will give you the same warm smile and embrace genuinely because you are my sister and I love you but because you are my sister and I love you I will also tell you that it’s wrong to cut your kes, wear makeup or dress inappropriately while wearing his crown.

    A turban is a pure and natural image. I myself am by no means perfect. My demerits are uncountable, I have sinned SO many times and I continue to make mistakes every day! However, admitting our mistakes is the first step to fixing them and doing right. Before I tied my dastaar, I was Amritdhari but I was also the eye liner queen. I was addicted to eye liner and extremely used to how I looked with it on. Once I started tying a dastaar and fell in love with it. I started tying it cleaner and was obsessed with making it look nice because I wanted to look good. One day I thought OMG my eyes look so dead so I picked up the eyeliner and applied it. Then I looked up at the overall image of myself in the mirror and saw a contradiction. I tried to mix two things that just don’t mix. The crown of natural beauty rested upon my head and yet I applied a product that sent the message that I wasn’t beautiful enough in my natural state. As spiritual people I feel sometimes we flirt with the idea of “how much can I get away with and still be saved?” We push things to the utmost limit. For example, I enjoy wearing nice/cute/fashionable clothing and in my freshman year of college I really started pushing the limit of what I could wear and still be “modest”.

    I didn’t feel I was doing anything wrong because I didn’t have any outright bad intentions. But one day my brother Vikram Singh asked me point blank “What are you wearing?” He might have even added that it doesn’t look good. I remember getting offended and giving him a snappy response of “what do you mean, I’m still covered up!” No one likes being told that they’re wrong and I admit Vikram Singh’s comment hurt my pride. However, looking back on the situation I see that my brother wasn’t trying to point out my sins or make me feel bad. He was only trying to help me, his little sister, walk the path. I also want to help my siblings. Sisters, I promise you I will be there for you if you need me. I’ve made so many mistakes involving Maya, Rehat and so forth I don’t want you to make the same mistakes! I want every Kaur stronger than the last because WE ARE THE FUTURE. But my beloved sister, even if you make a mistake I will still stand by you and embrace you. Furthermore, if I too have made the same mistake in my past I will try my best to help you get through it!

    But my dear Kaur the best help you can get is from Guru Granth Sahib. Rehat is very important in Sikhi but to fully understand WHY Sikhs must do certain things, we have to build a relationship with Guru Sahib. Just like the more you talk to someone, the closer and better friends you become with them. THE SAME APPLIES TO GURU SAHIB. The more we read Gurbani and converse with our Guru, the closer we’ll be and the more we’ll understand and have the strength to do what Guru Sahib wants us to. We often say that we love Guru Sahib but if we truly loved him with the true love of the bhagats, martyrs and saints then we would do what Guru Sahib wanted us to do WITHOUT question. Sisters, if we truly desired to merge and become one with Waheguru (which is the purpose of this life) we would make every effort to do what Guru Sahib tells us to do.

    “mat jaan seh galee paa-i-aa.
    Do not think that your Husband Lord can be obtained by mere words.

    maal kai maanai roop kee sobhaa it biDhee janam gavaa-i-aa. ||1|| rahaa-o.
    You are wasting this life in the pride of wealth and the splendor of beauty. ||1||Pause||”

    “pria bin seegaar karee thaethaa than thaapai kaapar a(n)g n suhaaee ||6||
    Without my Beloved, the more I decorate myself, the more my body burns; these clothes do not look good on my body. ||6||”

    If we truly loved Guru Sahib we would apply the concepts of Suniai (Listening) and Maniai (Faith) that come up in Jap Ji Sahib. We wouldn’t side step the importance of keeping kes when Gurbani clearly states that kes are necessary for naam simran.

    “romae rom rom romae mai guramukh raam dhhiaaeaeraam ||
    With each and every hair, with each and every hair, as Gurmukh, I meditate on the Lord.

    rom rom har oucharai khin khin har soee ||
    With each and every hair, they chant the Lord’s Name, each and every instant, the Lord.”

    In Gurbani, Guru Sahib continually tells us to do simran, chant the Lord’s name if we want to be saved and become one with Waheguru. He gave us a distinct life style and a distinct image in order to help us focus our minds DO SIMRAN. My dear sisters, if we do not listen to Guru Sahib and still say we love him then we do not truly love him. Not in the way Guru Angad Dev Ji loved Guru Nanak Dev Ji or the way Guru Amardas Ji loved Guru Angad Dev Ji. No. Until we can listen to our virtuous Guru’s commands we are ALL caught in the love of duality.

    “ih man mailaa ik na Dhi-aa-ay.
    This mind is filthy and polluted; it does not meditate on the One.

    antar mail laagee baho doojai bhaa-ay.
    Deep within, it is soiled and stained by the love of duality.”

    My dearest Kaurs, Guru Sahib Ji constantly explained that TRUE LOVE is obtained and self-will (manmat) is eradicated through meditating on his name alone. The only way to truly love everyone is by first loving your Guru who through the NAME will help you love God. Then you will see God in everyone and love everyone. Waheguru.

    “bin naavai sabh bharam bhulaanee.
    Without the Name, all are deluded by doubt.

    gur sayvaa tay har naam paa-i-aa bin satgur ko-ay na paavni-aa. ||1||
    Serving the Guru, the Lord's Name is obtained. Without the True Guru, no one can receive it. ||1||

    ha-o vaaree jee-o vaaree har saytee chit laavani-aa.
    I am a sacrifice, my soul is a sacrifice, to those who focus their consciousness on the Lord.

    har sachaa gur bhagtee paa-ee-ai sehjay man vasaavani-aa. ||1|| rahaa-o.
    Through devotion to the Guru, the True One is found; He comes to abide in the mind, with intuitive ease. ||1||Pause||”

    My beautiful sisters, when we knowingly make the same mistake more than once it is no longer a mistake but a choice. In this sense we are choosing Maya over Guru Sahib/Waheguru EVERYTIME. We often get hurt when someone says something to us rudely. For example, my mom yells at me when I don’t wake up during Amrit Vela for Nitnem. Being a Punjabi mom she doesn’t sugar coat it, she straight up says “How can you wear a dastaar and represent the image of Guru Sahib’s Sikh and NOT wake up for amritvela?” I admit hearing her “attack” my dastaar hurts my pride but what she is saying is the truth, no matter how she is saying it.

    “gur sathigur kaa jo sikh akhaaeae s bhalakae out(h) har naam dhhiaavai ||
    One who calls himself a Sikh of the Guru, the True Guru, shall rise in the early morning hours and meditate on the Lord’s Name.”

    We often say Guru Sahib sends us messages through other Sikhs, well then what if this is Guru Sahib yelling at me for not waking up during Amrit Vela through my mom? My dear sisters, the only way to correct ourselves is to admit when we are wrong and take steps to make changes. If an addict doesn’t admit he is an addict and tries justifying his behavior he will never change. PLEASE let’s go back to the basics. Read Gurbani and do Simran and Ardaas to Guru Sahib. He will give you strength.

    Nothing makes me happier than seeing a Kaur with a dastaar. I get so happy when a sister asks me to tie a dastaar on her, tells me they plan to start tying a dastaar or want help learning how to tie one. But nothing hurts me more than disrespect to Gurbani and disrespect to Guru Sahib. I cannot tolerate it, and we as Sikhs should not tolerate it. I understand that I am no one to point the faults of others because I am filled with faults of my own but to me dear sisters you are not others, you are part of my Khalsa Panth family. And if we truly wish to become one with our Guru and Waheguru then we have to embody Guru Sahib’s way of thinking. Only water can merge with water. We can only merge with Waheguru if we are pleasing to him and we are only pleasing to him if we follow Guru Sahib’s teachings.

    A wise Gursikh once told me; when you see someone doing something wrong you should kindly explain to them up to three times. If after the third time they still don’t listen, you did your part as a Gursikh and now it’s between them and God. However, the best thing you can do for someone is Ardaas. Thank Guru Sahib for making you strong enough to accept your unaltered self, ask him to continue to keep you strong (because ANYONE can fall) and ask him to please help the other Sikh become strong as well.

    Ultimately sisters, it is all about YOU and YOUR relationship with Waheguru. But Sangat is also important because it affects your thoughts and actions. So sisters, let’s be the best Sangat possible for each other and encourage each other to follow the truth that is found in Gurbani. We each have our own struggles but instead of being stuck struggling with our struggles lets struggle to follow the TRUE path! Remember dear sisters, you can fool the world but you cannot fool God. In the end your account will be read and you will have to pay accordingly to your deeds.

    “tooN valvanch look karahi sabh jaanai jaanee raam.
    You are practicing deception secretly, but the Lord, the Knower, knows all.

    laykhaa Dharam bha-i-aa til peerhay ghaanee raam.
    When the Righteous Judge of Dharma reads your account, you shall be squeezed like a sesame seed in the oil-press.

    kirat kamaanay dukh saho paraanee anik jon bharmaa-i-aa.
    For the actions you committed, you shall suffer the penalty; you shall be consigned to countless reincarnations.

    mahaa mohnee sang raataa ratan janam gavaa-i-aa.
    Imbued with the love of Maya, the great enticer, you shall lose the jewel of this human life.”

    I did not mean to offend anyone so please do not feel offended. I only drew these pictures to help visually depict my case. I am in no way saying that some Kaurs are better than others, I am simply saying that we must represent our turbans properly with modesty and utmost respect to Pita Ji.

    “it maarag chalay bhaa-ee-arhay gur kahai so kaar kamaa-ay jee-o.
    So walk on this Path, O sister soul-brides; do that work which the Guru tells you to do.

    ti-aagayN man kee mat-rhee visaarayN doojaa bhaa-o jee-o.
    Abandon the intellectual pursuits of the mind, and forget the love of duality.

    i-o paavahi har darsaavarhaa nah lagai tatee vaa-o jee-o.
    In this way, you shall obtain the Blessed Vision of the Lord's Darshan; the hot winds shall not even touch you.

    ha-o aaphu bol na jaandaa mai kahi-aa sabh hukmaa-o jee-o.
    By myself, I do not even know how to speak; I speak all that the Lord commands.”

    My beautiful sisters, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE forgive me if I said anything wrong. _/\_ WAHEGURU JI.
     

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  5. SaintSoldier1699

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    Sometimes we are pulled from pillar to post because of others views, the norm, society, expectations, I think the answer lies in you and your personal connection with what feels true to you. Guru ji states many times in Gurbani, the journey is within.

    We cant please everyone unfortunately, and most see the glass is half empty! Regardless of however much effort you make.

    Also, per the article and drawings, It's very common when people want to preach, they say they are not biased, yet say its wrong, then beg for forgiveness at the end and say they are worthless to even be wanting to preach! All sooooo confusing!
     
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    #4 SaintSoldier1699, Mar 13, 2014
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  6. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    EAR PIERCING...was an ESSENTIAL PART of becoming a YOGI...the moment someone made a decision to join the YOGIS..his ears were "pierced" (Kann Parreh which in Punjabi means EARS TORN). Since Gurmatt is NOT in favour of YOGAISM..as a way to find HIM...this Ear piercing Ritual is BANNED.

    2. NOSE RING is an instrument used to CONTROL domestic animals such as the COW, Buffalo, etc. A NOSE RING on a WOMAN signifies such CONTROL of her MALE (OWNER).
    This Nose Ring is DISGUISED as a BEAUTY INDICATOR when its NOT.

    The SRM thus BANNED these TWO forms clearly.

    IF we read and understand Gurmatt, via the GURBANI and try to get what the GURU is telling US..its this.....that the GURMATT...the GURBANI...the SGGS Way of LIFE is an ENTIRELY NEW GYAAN..a Totally NEW Way of LIFE...thus we are NOT Yogis. (No renunciation of life and society, no ear piercing, no long matted hair locks as in SADHUS, ).we are not Hindus.( no castes, no fasts, no pilgrimages and holy baths, no idols, no rituals such as no wearing clothes, rubbing ashes etc etc).we are NOT Muslims (No fasts no namazs, no hajjs and pilgrimages)....we are Not Vegetarians Ahimsas Jains (Life and Death is under HIS Command..we carry the SWORD when its needed) or Buddhists..whatever..we are GURMATT FOLLOWING SIKHS.

    Also we dont take a vow to POVERTY..we can and do wear the best clothes, ride the best cars, stay in the best mansions..enjoy the beautiful BODY and Environment..as we live the Good Life..and LOOK beautiful..there is no need to be anything BUT be in CONTROL of ego..
     
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  7. Ishna

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    If a person makes no connection between having their ear pierced and being a yogi, is their refusal to have their ear pierced because the SRM tells them to, a form of blind following?

    The original intent becomes lost, as no one knows why the western Sikh living in a society of people who make no correlation between a neatly pierced ear and a renunciate yogi, refuses to have their ear pierced.
     
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  8. Abneet

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    I have nothing against amritdhari girls who wear makeup/jewelry/ or do their eyebrows once in awhile because of the societal values we live in. But I have so much respect for those Amrritdhari women who don't wear makeup etc.. because Guru ji told us to not follow the public's opinion on what a girl should look like and this goes for guys too...Just my own thought. If the RM doesn't have anything against it than I don't see a problem of using jewelry and makeup.
     
  9. Harry Haller

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    I am sure they are very grateful for that

    this is an oxymoron, sometimes caked on makeup, bright red lipstick can hide the most beautiful heart, as indeed can a huge chola or turban mask the darkest. Who cares what the public opinion is? that line cuts both ways, personally I respect people for their actions rather than what they look like
     
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  10. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    And i wonder what the SRM authors would do today...TODAY its fashionable for one to have piercings even inside our mouths, private parts...and have steel ballbearings on tongues and navels etc..ha ha ha...

    Then there are men with rings in ears..women with rings all over the body..people haveing twin tongues..whatever...all in the name of fashion..

    BUT the SRM is a man made document..and it can be changed...a sikh woman with ears pierced may be holier than one without..who knows..its personal control of EGO that matters...one cna pierce the ears 12 places and still be ego free..???
     
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  11. Harkiran Kaur

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    As far as the RM, ear piercings and nose piercings are directly stated.... so it's the symbolism with regards to those, and not the fact that they are 'decorations' or 'adornments' on the body. I plan to follow those... I can use clip on earrings if necessary... (but if I wear a dastar I won't really even need earrings at all) and my nose is not pierced and never was.

    As for Gurbani, I have searched all through and most references state something like, let the word of God be your decoration or adornment... decorate yourself with the truth etc. -

    To me, all the places in SGGS where I read such statements basically mean that jewelry, makeup etc are not what will get you close to the Creator... as in making yourself beautiful won't win you a place by his side.

    I assume its a reference to how women have used their beauty throughout history, to get what they want from men... and even men for that matter have used gold adornments etc as a means to indicate high status and influence people. So the way I understand it is that jewelry and makeup are ok, as long as you aren't focusing on those things and using them to try and elevate your status to others or appear better than anyone else, or assume that because you are more 'beautiful' with ornaments etc that you will be able to influcence the creator with your artificial beauty. It's only our inner beauty clothed with naam will bring us to that goal.

    But we still have to live and enjoy life as well... I thnk the idea is balance... so a little makeup and jewelry to feel 'feminine' is ok... as long as we don't go over the top.

    That's just my opinion... and there are plenty who would disagree...
     
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  12. Ishna

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    If that's the case then what about clothes - should we go naked, and eat air, because Gurbani also says that our clothes and food should be naam/vitrues?

    It's a poetry book, not an instruction book. Jewellery or no jewellery, it's whats inside that matters, as has already been said, and why the SRM is otherwise silent on the matter.

    Don't read the sentences of Gurbani in isolation, like the Kaur tried to do in her article. You've got to read the whole shabad to get the gist of what it's trying to convey.

    Nothing else matters.
     
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  13. Harkiran Kaur

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    Ishna, I did not take only one line in my interpretation and as far as I can see, there is no other way to interpret it unless you interpret it literally and as you pointed out, that would be silly because it would mean as you said, also wearing no clothes. So I chose the non literal interpretation.... that nothing is disallowed, but none of that stuff will get you to God. - I was in agreement with your statement that 'its what inside that matters' - which sounded weird because it sounded like you disagreed with my interpretation, and then made the statement that actually was in agreement with what I interpreted??

    btw - I consider Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji to be MUCH more than just a poetry book. To put it on the same level as Dr Seuss, in my mind actually demeans it... it's treated as the living Guru as Guru Gobind Singh Ji declared it as such! All guidance for Sikhs is provided for within Gurbani... so if we are encouraged not to interpret what is written, and instead just read it as meaningless rhyme, then I think we are lost... Sikhi would be a religion without scripture, but it would have a really loooooong book of rhymes that people bow to.
     
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    #12 Harkiran Kaur, Mar 15, 2014
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  14. angrisha

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    I think this issue is very fascinating because ultimately our bodies are lost to this world anyways.... so does it really matter what we pierce/shave/paint etc? None of it goes with you in the end....
     
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  15. Harry Haller

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    I searched for goblins today, what I found had nothing to do with goblins..
     
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  16. Ishna

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    You're quite right, I misinterpreted your initial statements, Akasha.

    This was exasperation on my part, and I meant no disrespect to Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. Thanks for pointing out my error, rightly so. I might step away from the keyboard for today and see if I can get my foot out of my mouth.
     
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    #15 Ishna, Mar 15, 2014
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  17. Harkiran Kaur

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    It's ok... as I said... no offence was meant at all toward anyone... it's just how I feel about SGGS. I find deep spiritual meaning in it, or else I wouldn't be reading it so much.
     
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  18. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Hard and Fast "Rules" dont work with HIM. Period. This is the Gist of SGGS
     
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  19. Harry Haller

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    unlike the SRM lol
     
  20. gur_meet

    gur_meet India
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    WJKK WJKF

    After becoming amritdhari the original five kakars are to be adhered too.
    Panj pyaras were first given amrit by the Guru then the Guru taking amrit became member of khalsa . Through this act the Guru's persona or identity has become part of the group identity. The aim is spiritual.

    We are not to cut kesh - that's it as for as physical body is concerned . kakars are to be maintained as these keep us part of the group and associated behaviour . The sikh way of life is aimed at shifting the minds direction from vikars through simran and Bhram gyan.
    To be involved in doubts on what to wear , what to eat , make up or not , hair fixer or not etc only keeps us away from path.
    Wearing specific clothes , eating satvik food or fasting , taking holy dips and doing this or that does not make us Sachiar. The beginning pauri in japji sahib makes every thing clear.
    Of courses attachment matters. Attached to body beautification only , food greed etc is wrong direction. A sikh lives a good life , enjoys the worlds tech and other comforts but is humble and ready to share.
    It is the Sikh's mind where there should be simplicity. Dressing , makeup etc does not matter and so are not restricted.

    gurmeet singh
     
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