Sath Sri Akal all, it has been a while but I am back with questions, if you will accept them. Yesterday, we had the book signing event (In the Master's Presence: The Sikhs of Hazoor Sahib by Nidar Singh Nihang and Parmjit Singh) in London. I eagerly went along, with the full knowledge that my understanding of the life of Guru Gobind Singh Ji was weak. I am aware of the stories, tragedies and inspirations of the Guru's life time. I am also aware that the role of Guru Gobind Singh Ji was very different from Guru Nanak and needed to be for that time! Please do not think me ignorant (although I am), romantic (although I am in love with my Guru's words) or deluded (although I want to live my life as Guru Nanak dev ji would direct). I have to say that it has deeply hurt me to read some of the history that these great authors have uncovered and interpreted. Within the book, they recount conversations of weapon worship, page 36, (something that Nidar Singh Nihang claimed to my friend is still done), of cannabis taking, page 10 (Sukha, I dont have a real issue with this as I am aware that this natural herb is used for many purposes and only has its "reputation" in the West for its abuse), over-romanticed death of Guru Gobind Singh ji, which I feel left our Guru as being worshipped as Waheguru and mystical. My concern with these few examples (and I have not even got past page 40) is that what happened to the word of Guru Nanak? We speak of "religion" but we are NOT a religion. Guru Nanak spoke of acceptance, of understanding, of learning and acknowledgement , of the faults of idol worship (through the beauty and benefits of uttering the ambrosial name) but most of all he spoke of 1 God to worship and recite - WAHEGURU. I am not born of Sikh origin and I do not know as much as I wish to but I do know that the worship of weapons or any material matter is not what Sikhism is about. I also know that I most likely have this wrong and therefore require your help in understanding what I have misunderstood from Guru Gobind Singh ji. I acknowledge that my questioning my Guru's words is inapprporiate as I could NEVER be as enlightened and pure as he but can I accept this as what is right? On a following note, this has all led me to question if we have reverted to what Guru Nanak set to correct? Let me explain myself further (if you are not already upset with me or bored by my ignorance). As stated above, I understand that times were different during the life of Guru Gobind Singh ji and that he required his Khalsa to protect what is sacred word. But in doing this, have we formed a 'religion' against others? My understanding from the respected author is that there is 4 main 'types' of Khalsa 'bodies'. The Nihang being 'traditionalist'. They are also believed to acknowledge Sri Dassam Sahib and another book compiled by Guru Gobind Singh ji (I have never heard of it and cannot recall what he called it) as being equal to and bowed before as part of Sri Guru Granth Sahib. But Guru Gobind Singh ji clearly opposed this, right? What I am getting at, not so clearly, is that has this gone so far and so over interpreted that Sikhism (as a whole - do not divide us as they are this and we are that) has now done a complete 360 turn and become what Guru Nanak warned against? I am so confused. When Sikhism came into my life, for the first time I had a word for what I believed in. After 28 years of a Presbyterian priest tutting at me, asking me not to question but to believe, that I allowed the 'devil' to enter my voicebox, I finally knew that someone far more educated, far more attached, far more worthy had walked the ground of India speaking of the purest, non-judgemental love that one God could give. Not a God of physical form (although he could be), not a God of emotion (although he is), not a God of religion (although he is all). A power that could not be described in a million life times. Yet, here I am wondering what my respected Guru was thinking when he claimed (direct reference: In the Master's Presence: The Sikhs of Hazoor Sahib. Vol 1: History, ISBN: 978-0-9560168-0-5, pge 36) "I am the Guru of the world, the entire world knows this. To worship these weapons is proper and acceptable. Consider them clearly as my Guru. O Chaudry, listen to this truth. With you, what have we seen? Fearing your enemies, you lost your home. you turned your back on your Guru and have not understood the divine mystery...With lights and incense, worship these weapons by bowing low..." Please help me to understand what this is all about. Requiring you respected thoughts and understandings, A still learning and nowhere near good Sikh!