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O Khotey-aa! - Hey You Idiot!

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by kds1980, Nov 26, 2010.

  1. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    http://www.sikhchic.com/people/o_khoteyaa
    O Khotey-aa!

    by KHUSHWANT SINGH






    This is a true story of an incident which took place in a gurdwara in Noida.

    A Hindu, who excelled in singing the gurbani, had been invited to perform kirtan. A large number of the sangat turned up. Amongst them was a lady friend of mine, who went all the way from her home in South Delhi to Noida to hear him.

    Everyone was enchanted by the man's melodious voice. A granthi then recited the ardas, and spoke: "I want to say something important", he said. "I agree that it was a very good kirtan and I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings. But I think anyone who has cut his hair or shaved his beard should not be allowed to sing in a gurdwara."

    The fellow evidently did not know about Sikh maryada (tradition).

    If I had been there, I would have told him: "O khoteyaa (you donkey), do you know that till the Partition of the country in August 1947, the principal raagis of The Darbar Sahib were Muslim descendants of Guru Nanak's first disciple, Bhai Mardana? All Sindhi ragis like the famous Bhai Chella Ram are clean shaven. At the bhog ceremony of my closest and life-long friend, Prem Kirpal, the kirtan was done by a Muslim jatha based in Delhi."

    Although the Noida fellow did not think about hurting anyone's feelings, he did so by his stupid bigotry. If I had been there, I would have got up and slapped him on his face.

    I hope he reads this column and tenders an abject apology to the Noida gurdwara sangat.
     
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  3. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Sometimes Double standards of these so called intellectuals surprises me lot.Though I don't agree with views of granthi I am also surprised Khushwant Singh said that he would have slapped this man.In his entire life he condemned voilence Yet on an incidence where he does not agree with person's views He wanted to slap him.

    BTW I want to Remind mr. Khushwant Singh How he bailed out Rajiv Gandhi on 1984 Riots
    and said use to praise him ..O.K mr.khushwant singh you want to slap this guy
    you are free to do so but then there may be 1000 s of sikhs who want to slap you for many of your opinions you published.Please accept them even if it cost your life.
     
  4. spnadmin

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Kanwardeep Singh ji

    Here are the comments on that article. I took out the names. They are intriguing. :)

    Then give me a minute so I can look this up in the Sikh Rehat Maryada. Is that true that SRM are simply guidelines? That was not my understanding and I am willing to debate that point. winkingmunda


    Conversation about this article

    1: (Canada), November 23, 2010, 11:51 AM.

    I think this is an important line of discussion. Perhaps we need more scholarly and philosophical input into the issue ...

    2: (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), November 23, 2010, 12:20 PM.

    If and when scholars and philosophers are invited to address this issue, please do not forget to invite the "khotaa" to attend the conference. (I sincerely mean no disrespect towards anyone.)

    3: (Toronto, Ontario, Canada.), November 23, 2010, 7:34 PM.

    There are some Sikhs with their own maryada and want to impose it on others. There are many Sindhi and Muslim followers of Nanak who do melodious kirtan.

    4: (Chandigarh, Punjab), November 23, 2010, 11:38 PM.

    I think Khushwant Singh has said it all. No matter how many intellectuals you collected in a room - they couldn't have come out with this one.

    5: ( Canada), November 24, 2010, 7:08 AM.

    Maryadas are just guidelines. When they overtake and suffocate the principles of any faith, devouring the very principles that gave it life, it defeats the very purpose of its existence.

    6: (Singapore), November 24, 2010, 7:10 AM.

    Poor granthi ji - made to play the role of a khota in guru's darbar and sangat. The khotaas and the Judas among men ... slapping them down may be a good impulse, but ... I am glad Khushwant Singh ji hesitated - remembering it's the karmic law at work. Was it Htler who once said - "Who said i am not in the special protection of God?" But Khushwant ji - I suggest you get the granthi out of the darbar and slap him silly if he does it again. No need for scholarly discussions on this particular subject, I think.

    7: (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), November 24, 2010, 7:01 PM.

    Every religion has Talibans, only named differently. They make and enforce their own maryadas. Khushwant Singh's use of 'khota', although quite apt in this context, is one that is often used as a term of endearment, but since it drew a wholesale ire, let's replace it with plain 'dumb-head'. Now that this is settled, let's look at Guru Granth Sahib, the living Guru that we all respectfully bow to as we enter the precincts of the gurdwara. Guru Granth Sahib has honoured the saints and divines from even so-called 'low castes' and 'untouchables' belonging to different faiths by including their hymns, thus emphasizing the fatherhood of one Pita and love for all mankind, irrespective of caste, colour and creed. Bhai Kanhayyi-aa started the first equivalent of the Red Cross known to Man, and served water indiscriminately to friends and foes alike. Some accused him of treason. You know the rest of the story. The Seva-panthis and Adanshahis, all Sehajdhari Sikhs, were the ones who propagated the teachings of the Gurus more than anyone else. It was also their tradition that the first born son shall become a Sikh. Our Talibans took care of that and that tradition has now totally disappeared. We also went out on on the town with the followers of Bhagat Ravidas and many now no longer have parkash of Guru Granth Sahib and have now installed only Bhagat Ravidas' hymns in the form of a granth. Let's learn to think before we pick up the first stone to throw at others.
     
  5. spnadmin

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    No need to slap anyone. The Sikh Rehat Maryada is very clear. And since when does following it make a person "Taliban?"

    Section 3: Chapter 5

    Kirtan (Devotional Hymn Singing by a Group or an individual)
    Article VI

    (a) Only a Sikh may perform kirtan in a congregation.

    (b) Kirtan means singing and scriptural compositions in traditional musical measures.

    (c) In the congregation, kirtan only of Gurbani (Guru Granth’s or Guru Gobind Singh’s hymns) and, for its elaboration, of the compositions of Bhai Gurdas and Bhai Nand Lal, may be performed.

    (d) It is improper, while singing hymns to rhythmic folk tunes or to traditional musical measures, or in team singing, to induct into them improvised and extraneous refrains. Only a line from the hymn should be a refrain.

    Just to clarify. These are in reference to a Gurdwara service. There may indeed be other times when a non Sikh performs Kirtan in gurdwara, outside of a formal service. We have seen videos for example of Nusrat Ali Khan doing that. But that is very different and SRM clarifies the protocol for kirtan in congregational services.
     
  6. kds1980

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    SPN admin ji

    Sikhchic is heavily biased site they either mold the comments of people as comments first have to go through moderation first or don't even allow comments they don't agree .I earlier posted comments on it but Now I have stopped
     
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  7. spnadmin

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Yes - that has also happened to me. I also have no problem at all with Kushwant Singh. But in this case he is giving a bad name to Khotey. They are actually quite intelligent, sometimes too intelligent. :shockedmunda:
     
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  8. kds1980

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    My main question here is it O.K for him to say he want to slap.If he wants to slap a person then there are millions of people who want to slap someone so how could anyone condemn voilence especially the type of Khushwant singh who always took firm stand against voilence
     
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  9. spnadmin

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Well of course he should not. But you know he has been in hot water more than once for his use of colorful language. This is one more example. I however also find the Comments on the article perplexing. That is about all I can say for now.
     
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  10. Admin Singh

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Please bear in mind that i am not defending Khushwant Singh in any way, but in Punjabi language, the use of word 'Khotey' has become a synonym with suggesting a person's idiotic/ignorant behavior... this shows our frustration... we normally use it just to vent our anger... even i sometimes do this to give vent to my anger... whislingmunda but that does not mean it advocates violence! But showing an image of a donkey, SikhChic.com has proved how a literal meaning of a word can spoil the true meaning/intention of the comment.


    We on SPN are debating a thread "Slap on the Dirty face of Real Islam...", now here word "Slap" may be understood only as a synonym for word "defiance". A Slap, here indicates that the person/community needs to come back to his/their senses...

    Gurfateh!
     
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  11. kds1980

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Aman singh ji

    Please read this

    Khushwant Singh is clearly saying that he would have slapped The man.Why not the same logic is applicable when anyone disagree with Khushwant Singh? Khushwant Singh use to praise and still praises Rajiv Gandhi,I am sure there are many Sikhs Who want to slap him.
    Will he allow them to slap him?
     
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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Of-course the person to whom the insult is directed would never take it! But directing words like Khotey or Thappar (Slap!) has the same affect of actually doing it! Going ahead and literally doing it would amount to our own idiocy!

    swordfight <= even using this emoticon does not advocate violence in its literal sense! It signifies the infighting that goes on in one's self... but this mundahug signifies love/affection for sure!! Its all about how you take it!
     
  13. davinderdhanjal

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Dear SPNADMIN,
    "Just to clarify. These are in reference to a Gurdwara service. There may indeed be other times when a non Sikh performs Kirtan in gurdwara, outside of a formal service. We have seen videos for example of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan doing that. But that is very different and SRM clarifies the protocol for kirtan in congregational services."

    I may not have understood this well enough - is there any reason for someone who is not a sikh to be able to or not to be able to perform a service in the gurdwara?
    If a person who is not a sikh and has the ability to perform a service, acceptable to the Guru, I would consider that man on par if not better than a sikh. That would show me that he, over and above his own religion, knows about sikhism too!
    Or have I missed something?
     
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  14. spnadmin

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    davinderdhanjal ji

    This is the comment made by Kulwant Singh who was eager to "slap" a "khotey"
    And this is what it says in the Sikh Rehat Maryada, about Gurdwara protocol

    And here is how Sikh is defined in Sikh Rehat Maryada
    Kushwant Singh has confused tradition with rehat. It is quite true that sangats differ as to how closely they follow the rule that only a Sikh may perform kirtan. Some will say that a "Sikh" is to mean only baptized, and others take a different view. We have seen many videos in which the descendants of Bhai Mardana have performed kirtan in gurdwara in the presence of Sri Guru Granth Sahib. It is a beautiful thing when a sangat opens its heart to include anyone who shares a love of Guruji. However, the arguments that have developed in the SikhChic article have taken a turn, one that suggests that in the rehat is a new form of caste-ism, that is is exclusionary, and contrary to the values of Guru Nanak.

    A person can see the problem many ways, but here are two extremes:
    versus
    Now this is a very complicated issue for debate. And many times I have heard that religion divides people, and that by adhering to the Sikh Rehat Maryada, we are supporting divisiveness and an idea of religious superiority. However, my personal passion tends in the direction of the second comment. We have made many sacrifices, as Skhs, over centuries, to protect the legacy of Guru Nanak and the Shabad enshrined in Sri Guru Granth Sahib. Muslims, Hindus, Unitarians, Methodists, etc., but for exceptional cases here and there, did not carry our burden -- and we are still carrying it.

    Kushwant Singh in the story latched on to the Partition of 1947 to make his statements appear all the more passionate and all the more convincing that a great disservice was done to our Gurus. And like Kushwant Singh, there are others who will latch onto the partition, the shaheedyan, and this or that moment in Sikh history to make it seem as if they claim the moral high ground. What he has missed is that Sikhi is more than tradition.

    I personally have made fewer sacrifices than most. I am also not ready to abandon what did not come to me by birth. So the conversation leaves me perplexed. If we cast away those concepts that define us and our traditions, how do we keep alive an identity that was forged by sacrifice and tempered by blood. Why have gurdwaras or kirtan in sangat at all? The Baptist church down the street should be good enough. Why bother?
     
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  15. davinderdhanjal

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Dear SPNADMIN,
    Two points to clear.
    First
    "(v) the baptism bequeathed by the tenth Guru, and who does not owe allegiance to any other religion, is a Sikh."
    The rule or statement, I believe should be applied to 'Singhs' not Sikhs. But both are part and parcel of the community or family that we are so proud of, their contributions to humanity, Punjab, India and world.
    Guru Nanak, correct me if I am wrong, did not produce any Maryadas which involved baptism? His rules are simple and if followed would make us saints compared to most granthis and politicians of today.
    His followers are larger in number than Singhs of Guru Gobind Singh - they are possibly not as militant as Singhs but we cant all be millitant - some may want to tackel issues like Guru Nanak did - that is not to say that we do not need Singhs. (I explain the Sikh family likening it to a tree below. Singhs are Sikhs and Much More)
    I consider this type of society (Sikhs and Singhs) as a democratic voice that will offer alternative approaches to problems - keeping in mind Guru Nanak's basic teachings of helping each other and not hurting people we can come up with solutions far superior than a single minded 'macho' mentality.
    So my point here is - we should not have word 'baptism' when Sikhs are involved and where a kirtan involving 'millitant action' is required I would think it should be carried out by a Singh to motivate the necesary element required in the Sikh/Singh community.
    I do also understand that some undesireable elements can creep into both catagoris but if the LEADERS were worth their salt they would put in place certain filters.
    Second point
    " Muslims, Hindus, Unitarians, Methodists, etc., but for exceptional cases here and there, did not carry our burden -- and we are still carrying it."
    I have not understood this statement at all - so what I might say may be totally different from what it intended. Why should anyone else carry our burden?
    We should consider our community (Sikhs and Singhs) as a large tree.
    It needs roots, trunk, bark, branches, leaves, flowers and fruit. The community has to provide all these needs of the religion/community. As a family one does not force the childern to do what they do not want to do we guide them with love and affection and as they grow up as masters of their fields - they may stand together with parents with values complimenting parents' and additional values because they have different 'tools' to solve problems and lead fruitful lives.
    Leaders of the community MUST sift out what is good about people around them and make use of their abilities/talents to better the society as a whole.
    A forced workforce will not produce an output as good as those who do things by encouragement - simple example of Soviet Union and USA is explanatory.
    Make things simpler and not difficult if you want to motivate masses!
     
  16. spnadmin

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    davinderdhanjal ji

    There are several predictable reactions given whenever the Sikh Rehat Maryada is "This has nothing to do with me. It is only a set of recommendations." "It does not apply to me." "It does not have to be followed." "It is a fake document, yet one more ruse perpetrated by the British to enslave Sikhs." Now you are saying it applies to Singhs not Sikhs.

    These arguments come up all the time in forums.

    So I continue constructing this imaginary world in which we do away with everything. We clean the slate in order to understand the problem from a fresh perspective. Here we are. In this perplexing and imaginary world I imagine we have done away with gurdwaras. Next thing to do away with then would be the Sikh Rehat Maryada.

    Where does that leave us? Not too far from where we are indeed today. We are led by public figures who are very anxious to welcome sant samaj panthis, including Ram Rai. In all seriousness, what is there left to fend off incursions of so-called sants and babas? Who is going to do that? What rational arguments can they use? The document which we call the Sikh Rehat Maryada is incidental to decision making at the "top." Its procedures for taking decisions according to the will of the panth have been disregarded year by year and have eroded Sikh traditions. These are democratic traditions, such as calling for a gurmata to resolve issues according to panthic will. We are being swallowed now by a cobra of many heads.

    You are quite right . Masses would be motivated by doing away with the principles of SRM, saying that it is irrelevant to the masses. But have a care. What would be left would not be Sikh traditions, and might be Punjabi traditions, which are not universal traditions. As things stand they may not even be welcoming to the masses within Punjab. Or perhaps there would be no traditions remaining, leaving the field open to define Sikhi according the the whim and will of political operatives. That was my bottom line in my previous post. I did not spell it out. I have noticed that, for many who are comfortable with his/her birth identity as a Sikh, it is nothing to forget that culture is not what makes you a Sikh. And Kushwant Singhhas only impressed on me his confusion regarding traditions Sikh traditions.
     
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  17. findingmyway

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    Davinder Ji,
    I am going to simplify this issue completely. I try and hold respect for all. Most of my social circle are non-Indians and non-Sikhs as I believe in a World where all can share and respect our differences. However, when it comes to the main divan in a Gurdwara, I feel very strongly that it should be done by a Sikh only. Private functions or interfaith functions are different but the main divan is where most of the Sikh population get their education and they trust what they hear on the stage. The kirtan is more than singing-it is teaching and inspiration. The latter can be delivered by anyone but the former can only be given by a Sikh who does not owe allegiance to others and therefore will not give mixed messages. Next you will argue that this is also happening as many Sikhs give confusing messages. Agreed. However, shouldn't we spend our energies in correcting this through education rather than muddying the waters further?
    This is not being exclusive but is using commonsense! People from other faiths are not stopped from doing kirtan on a personal level, nor are they stopped from participating in other ways, not are they stopped from taking part and enjoying the service. As said in an earlier post you would not go to a church and expect to be taught about Christian principles from a Jew, you are not even allowed to enter a Mosque as non-Muslim! If we allow anyone to conduct the Sikh services then there is a real danger of the messages being distorted through other ways of thinking and other agendas.
    You are right in that the community is a large tree. If we dilute the roots so they are not as strong then the tree will collapse and Sikhi will be lost forever, just as Buddhism in India was lost.
    Jasleen
     
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  18. davinderdhanjal

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Dear SPNADMIN and findingmayway,
    Our alegiance goes First Human, second Sikh, third Punjabi or any other sikh stater, fourth Indian and fifth the world inhabitant.
    My comment about Singhs is to do with baptism - do not muddle that with Sikhs/Singh issue. I consider Sikhs and Singhs as levels of achievement in Sikhism.
    You may agree with me that there are a lot more sikhs (who are not baptised) and lot fewer Singhs (who are baptised Sikhs). If it was easy to be a Singh we would have the situation reversed i.e. more Singhs than Sikhs.
    In a family when a parent encourages one child the other feels left out and if you try to shove something unpalatable down their throats majority may rebel.
    Sikhs of Guru Nanak faith are no different than Singhs except they may not stand out as fine examples of Guru Gobind Singh's embodiment. I have mentioned in some of my comments that Sikhi is NOT EASY to practice but we have to if we want to be Singhs and fight problems of Sikhs today.
    By picking on secondary issues "dilute the roots"
    I have been looking through some attrocities committed by Indian authorities on Sikhs during 1984 and no conclusions reached and no one owning up - how is emphasis on Sikh Maryada going to help those who lost their families, whole gurdwaras razed to ground, sikhs boiled in oil, burnt with tyres around their necks.
    Sikhi needs us to be pure 'Khalse' so that no matter where we stand we will be right!
    As I see it we pick on issues like 'rehat maryadas', 'dasam granth', interpretations of 'ardas' that we have been reciting for 300 years and hounding our own kith and kin who get misguided for what ever reason!!
    This are the 'diversions' that leave us no time for the real issues. Embracing the SIKH values and family!!!
    Follow Gurus' teachings for inward enlightenment before 'political rules and regulations' for outward enlightnment and show.
    Gurus' teachings will also give us strength to accept what is right or wrong in the SRM!!!!
     
  19. spnadmin

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    davinderdhanjal ji

    You have twice mentioned the idea that there is a class of "Singhs" within the panth, who represent baptized Sikhs. And the "Singhs" are somehow different from "Sikhs." You might want to elaborate on your statement as I have no understanding of what you mean by it. The SRM instructs males to take the name of "Singh" and women to take the name of "Kaur." And a fraction of the panth would argue that one must have taken amrit sanchar to be a Singh or a Kaur.

    Obviously the majority of Sikhs have not been baptized, yet the majority of Sikhs do take Singh and Kaur as their name. There is something ironic about what you are saying. You seem to be saying that amirtdhari are not Sikhs, but Singhs. And also asserting that I am in a "muddle."

    I don't think so.

    There are other points on which we will need to agree to disagree.
    I actually do not agree at all that this would be the order of priorities. It is not consistent with gurmat.

    And you also state "Indian" should be our fourth allegiance -- which also ironically appears to validate something I said earlier. You are willing to forsake the Sikh Rehat Maryada as a diversion. However, the maryada has an unwavering focus on what it means to be a Sikh, and how to live as a Sikh. I argued that when you confuse Sikh traditions spelled out in SRM, with cultural traditions, then you really have only cultural traditions. Sikhi becomes a Punjabi "thing." Where does that leave everyone else who is not a Punjabi, as well as those who have converted?

    IMHO The Sikh Rehat Maryada is to date the vessel that delivers the formula of shared identity within the panth because it speaks to Punjabi and non-Punjabi in the same way. Its relevance is to all, both those born Sikh and those who have converted. Abandon the Sikh Rehat Maryada, and Sikhi ceases to be about the teachings of the Gurus. It shrinks to the level of partisan squabbles and power struggles occurring in just one part of the world. Apologies for my blunt words.
     
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  20. davinderdhanjal

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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    Dear SPNADMIN,
    "And a fraction of the panth would argue that one must have taken amrit sanchar to be a Singh or a Kaur."
    By being born and going through the ritual of 'amrit sanchar' does not provide direction and route for the child. Child will not be able to uphold the values instilled by that ritual
    till say age of about 10-15 when a child would know what is required of a Singh or Kaur.
    So I would think that is the time, or the time when a person realises what it means to be a Singh or Kaur, should the person be given 'amrit sanchar' and uphold the requirements.
    Amritdhari is the 'embodyment of Guru Gobind Singh' - how many people actually are anywhere near that!
    If just assuming the name Singh or Kaur makes one 'embodyment of Guru Gobind Singh' would mock sikhism - the killers of Sikhi would run horse and cart through us!
    Sikhs are those following NANAKS' teachings - Singhs are those who stand up and be counted as protectors of the faith under any adversity. We need both!
    The 'allegiance by SRM code', I do not know what that states but I am a Sikh born in Kenya, brought up there till age of 16 and then in UK - I have always understood allegiance as I have specified - when you are born you are a human being nurtured by a sikh family - being in Punjab you are a Punjabi - there are other SIKHS who are in other places and uphold Nanaks' values - they are 'other placers' then - we are Indians as our forefathers helped to shape this nation to become a nation free of tyrnee - as the world gets smaller we are a part of it and must contribute to that too. Is that too simple?
    You are basing most of your comments on SRM - I have mentioned earlier Guru Nank did not have such rules - he wanted us to be good humans! That was why Moslems, Hindus and others valued his teachings!!
    So those people who are 'good sikhs of Nanak' may not find teachings of SRM as understandable or palatable as ones who produce them. To bring all good people (sikhs) into the fold - broaden the 'rules' to simplicity and goodness first. That will encompass a bigger community and lighten the burden we have better.
     
  21. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    Re: O Khotey-aa! ,Which include Khushwant Singh

    As I said, veer davinderdhanjal ji. Imagine a panth without Sikh Rehat Maryada. Nearly all of us would like it if we were not reminded in some formal way of who we are as a community, and how to act and live within that community. That is all from me right now. Thanks for an interesting encounter.
     
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