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Questions From A Non-sikh

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by HFTarasque, Mar 23, 2015.

  1. HFTarasque

    HFTarasque
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    Hello everyone, I have received some very good answers to these questions on another forum and they recommended that I come here for a better discussion.

    As the title of the thread suggests, I am currently exploring Sikhi as well as other religious beliefs (including Buddhism and Radha Soami, though I have issues with following a human master). I come from a Christian background, but I would not describe my beliefs as being particularly Christian, as I believe in an all-pervading God who is impersonal, and I believe in systems such as reincarnation and karma. So, I have many questions about Sikhi as I am on my search, and I was hoping that you all might be able to answer some questions for me. None of these questions are meant to challenge your beliefs at all, but merely to express my own doubts and challenges that I face in my search.

    sikhism.jpg

    1. Buddhism and Sikhism I think are largely similar, but they have a major difference that I find hard to reconcile. Buddhism (at least Theravadan and Zen) teaches that the existence of God can't be answered for sure, and the same can be said for the soul. Instead the Buddha says that we should forget such questions, and instead focus on achieving Nirvana, as these questions impede our spiritual growth. Sikhi (as far as I am aware) states that our ultimate purpose is to merge with God, and reach Sach Khand. The problem is, I can see and understand the reasoning behind both of these positions, and I have a really hard time figuring out what to believe on this issue. How can I resolve this conflict?



    2. Scriptures are obviously very important to Sikhs, as the SGGSJ forms the foundation for Sikhi. My question regarding this is, why is reading the Bani repeatedly so important? Is kirtan more beneficial than to practice simran and meditation on the atman inside? I can understand reading it for understanding, and of course reading scriptures at different times in our lives, we will receive different lessons. But is inward meditation not more valuable, provided it is done with a proper spiritual understanding?



    3. As I am young and come from the West (I am only 18), I have certain Western values which I find hard to reconcile with both Sikhism and Buddhism, even though I may find the religion very appealing. Specifically, I feel very strongly about gender equality, and that differences between men and women are almost entirely (if not entirely) cultural rather than biological or spiritual in nature. This means that I am a strong advocate of homosexual rights, gay marriage, and transgender rights. I realize that Sikhi has done a lot to stand up for many of these things, but at the same time, I see that homosexuals are not allowed to be married with the anand Karaj. As a Westerner, this seems to be the same religious dogmatism that I tried to escape when I left Christianity, but maybe I am misunderstanding it.



    4. Marriages. As far as I understand, Sikhs do not condone love marriages, and instead practice arranged marriages. What is the harm in a love marriage, or in dating? Again I realize I come from a Western perspective, but I fail to see how these things are harmful to your spirituality. If all of your energy is focused on finding a partner, or on sexual promiscuity, or the like, I can definitely understand it. Also, why can an inter-faith marriage not be done with the Anand Karaj? If a Sikh wants to marry a non-Sikh, isn't that their choice? And if they want to do the marriage the Sikh way, is that not displaying the proper respect to Sikhi? For a long time, I dated a Muslim girl and we planned to be married. Sadly that didn't happen, but I can't imagine missing out on someone who may be the love of my life, because I am limited to only marrying someone of my religion.



    5. Again as far as I understand, Guru Nanak Ji shunned religious labels. He stated "There is no Hindu, there is no Muslim." So therefore, why have his teachings started a religion? This is something I haven't been able to find much discussion about, and I am quite curious about it. Has Sikhism fallen prey to the same dogmatism that he taught against?



    6. The SGGSJ was named as the last Guru for the Sikhs. Does this mean there will never be another Guru? What about when we move out of Kal Yug and into the next age, will there be another succession of Gurus?



    I'm sorry for the long list of questions. I look forward to hearing your responses. Thank you.
     
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    #1 HFTarasque, Mar 23, 2015
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  3. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    Hello and welcome to the forum

    your in good company, that is what we are doing here too!

    what is a human master?

    not all Sikhs believe in reincarnation and karma, and not all Sikhs believe in 'Goddie' with his flowing beard and wise eyes.
    Hmmmm what you will end up with is a nice debate where we all learn from each other, I can answer questions but only from my own viewpoint. There are many views on this forum, and it is the richer for them.
    pity, I like questions that challenge my beliefs

    I think they are not, I think they have as much in common as a Range Rover and a BMW X5.
    I reject the idea that the ultimate purpose of Sikhism is to merge with Goddie and then reach Sachkhand, I mean what sort of religion is it that has that as its number one aim? it does not even make any sense, we are already merged with god, and I dont even know where Sachkhand is. As for Nirvana, not really interested.

    your on the right track! why is mumbling bani so important.....

    Personally I am a strong advocate of rights for all, regardless of gender or sexual orientation.
    Strictly speaking I would imagine 99% of all weddings under anand Karaj should not really happen, due to the spiritual or lack of state of the parties involved. This is a cultural thing, it has nothing to do with Sikhism.
    no your understanding it fine, Sikhism has the same corrupt influences and agendas that all religions have, for me it helps to think of Sikhism as a way of life rather than a religion.
    Well there are reasons why you are limited to marrying someone of Sikhism, if you intend to have Anand Karaj, it is a marriage between you, your partner, and the universe, if your partner is not a Sikh, that will make this union harder. A Sikh puts their connection with the universe higher than a connection with a partner, so through your joint connection with the universe, you are also connected to each other.

    Having said that, if you want a love marriage, no problem, the problems you state are cultural ones.
    yes....

    sorry I do not know what Kal Yug is, whatever it is, it sounds quite Vedic!

    the above is my own opinion only, please do not take it as definitive Sikhism, good luck
     
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  4. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    how does Nanak find you?
     
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  5. Original

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    He already has - SPN !
     
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  6. HFTarasque

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    Thank you! :D
    I was introduced to Sikhi through the talks of Ishwar Puri, who is a Radha Soami. He speaks about the initiation of a perfect living master, a satguru, being necessary to reach Sach Khand. This is a teaching I struggle with quite a lot.

    Really? I was under the impression that reincarnation and karma are quite important teachings in Sikhi.

    Well if you would like me to ask some tougher and more direct questions, I'm sure I can think of some.

    What do you see that is so different between them?

    Then what is the aim of religion? Specifically, what is the aim of Sikhi? It seems like you've ruled out most of the possibilities in your post here.

    That is good to hear.

    Then why is marriage so encouraged within Sikhi? And why is the anand Karaj so restricted?

    This is the first time I've heard someone say this. It seems your views of Sikhi are quite unorthodox. Would you mind explaining this some? I'd really like to hear all sides of this.

    Kal Yug is, as I understand it, the age of darkness. I.E. the present time, when people are most spiritually ignorant.
     
  7. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    I tend to drop things I am struggling with, I am not an arrogant person, but I would rather find my own way with the help of friends and associates, than put my trust in some babaji.
    There are many Sikhs that do not believe in such, there are some good threads on the subject here on this forum, I will find the links and paste them here for you
    Please do, it will stretch both of our mental thinking
    Buddhism is about finding enlightenment, Sikhism is just about living, in the real world, with real problems,
    The aim of Sikhism is to find heaven on earth during your lifespan, by being connected to the universe, and by being a slave to creation, with no carrot, with no stick, and with no thought of reward.It is about an attitude, a way of thinking. Heaven sitting next to beardie does not come into it.

    I guess the aim of most religion is to control, Sikhi's aim is to liberate, to help you wash away the false filters that you see life through, till you see the truth.
    The idea is that a couple should be ready for anand Karaj, rather than see it as 'something before the booze'
    well, if someone were to call me religious, I would probably be quite offended, I know religious people, they mumble a lot, and take part in weird ceremonies, and then mumble a bit more, maybe with candles, they tackle problems in life with more mumbling, or sometimes they pay people to mumble for them, I am not a religious person.
    Oh yeah Kalyug, the dark time, well this is certainly a dark time, yes, very dark, the sun is shinning, I have a full belly, I had a stent fitted to my heart a few weeks ago, has worked wonders, I have heating in my house!

    Just to remind you that back in the days before Kalyug, Muslim soldiers were marching down streets with Sikh heads on spears, I wonder what they called that time.............

    As for most people being spiritually ignorant, with the advent of the internet, I would have said the opposite.
     
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  8. HFTarasque

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    I would tend to agree.

    Perhaps some such questions will come out of our discussion.

    You think that Sikhism is not about enlightenment? Then why do you follow it?

    This sounds like what I was saying. I never depicted sach khand or nirvana as a heaven-like place. That's a very Abrahamic view of it and something I personally don't believe at all.

    So things like the strict code of conduct are not controlling?

    The same goes for any form of marriage.

    But you do consider yourself Sikh, no?

    I think that's exactly what it refers to. In your satisfaction with the material world, you are turning your back on spiritual matters. We are spiritually ignorant, and I think that's why we have such dogmatic controlling religions in the world today. They both approach it from the wrong direction.

    Wouldn't that have been Kalyug as well?

    You must be on a very different part of the internet than I am.
     
  9. Harry Haller

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    to help me live an honest and true life and to then die in peace. Most enlightened people just turn into babas anyway. The others keep it to themselves, so what is the point in finding enlightenment?

    no, absolutely not, the code of conduct exists to make you a better person, anyone who follows it out of fear, or duty is, in my view, an idiot. Follow it out of love, or try to follow it out of love, or don't follow it at all. Be a Sikh because you love the code.No one should struggle with being a SIkh, you just need to get the levels right, a Khalsa is the highest a Sikh can be, it should be a pleasure, not a responsibility.

    Well I do, yes, I cannot speak for whether others consider me a Sikh.

    What are spiritual matters? What does it mean to be spiritually ignorant? There seems to be so many different meanings of the word spiritual, I am going to have to ask you to clarify.

    so that means then was kalyug, now is kalyug, which time was not kalyug?

    A quick google search for porn shows 372 million results, the word spiritual shows 277 million. strangely enough the words spiritual porn show 6.4 million!

    People are starting to look beyond a quick fix of pleasure in my view, I guess that is my definition of spiritual, looking beyond temporary pleasures.
     
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  10. lotus lion

    lotus lion
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    Hi,

    In opening I would like to say that I have a lot of love and respect for my Buddhist Brothers and Sisters, am a long-time Meditator of the breathe (8 years), and also study the Theravada school of thought.

    <<1. Buddhism and Sikhism I think are largely similar, but they have a major difference that I find hard to reconcile. Buddhism (at least Theravadan and Zen) teaches that the existence of God can't be answered for sure.>>

    I would tend to be in agreement with yourself with respect to Sikhi and Buddhism being similar.

    My stance is that the Teachings that came through the Buddha are also found in the Guru Granth Sahib.

    The difference with regards to God and no-God is, at one level, but a semantic one.

    From my understanding Sikhs and Buddhists are both describing that Divinity is everywhere, and whilst Sikhs openly acknowledge it and perfectly comfortable with calling it God, Buddhists are, respectfully, indifferent to it.

    For illustration purposes, imagine a pool of water from which all of life and everything has appeared from. Sikhs would see that as Divine and call it God; Buddhists would say that that was merely performing its natural function.

    A further illustration, imagine someone you love, respect and admire. Sikhs would acknowledge that, Buddhists would see it too but say that it is just a person.

    Both acknowledge it and recognise the attributes but have different stances, but that is all they are at the end, simply stances.

    On a more practical level, I must admit that personally, the differences do begin to take effect over time. If I look at the person who I love in an indifferent way, which is not wholly incorrect when looked at from this perspective, one can see the cumulative effect.

    As a Sikh I naturally and rightly believe that that God is everywhere and there is a feeling of love, comfort, warmth, a strong sense of security as well as belonging that comes with it.

    When one is indifferent to it, it initially feels less then respectful to begin with, and then somewhat empty, and ultimately isolated as one progresses on the path.

    Having gone through this, I have now reached a happy medium where fully acknowledge God is everywhere and meditate, do Prayer & Ardas, and Sewa too.

    In Summary, Sikhi, at its most fundamental level recognizes, re-establishes, and fully acknowledges the most important relationship in life, which is with the Creator, Buddhist also see it, but are indiffent to the Creator.

    <<and the same can be said for the soul.>>

    Personally I believe in soul as The Guru and previous Teachers taught and it intuitively makes sense to me.

    When on dies the spark of energy with you is extinguished and passes on in another Form, Rebirth as the Buddhists call it. That was the cause of you to be alive. There is a lot of debate about this even within Buddhism. Please look into Tathāgatagarbha - essentially that we already possess a seed, which when surrounded by the right conditions will flourish and allow us to become enlightened.
    Note how this not that different to what the Guru has taught except that Sikhs acknowledge that the seed is Divine in origin.

    <<Instead the Buddha says that we should forget such questions, and instead focus on achieving Nirvana, as these questions impede our spiritual growth. Sikhi (as far as I am aware) states that our ultimate purpose is to merge with God, and reach Sach Khand.>>

    For Me, Sach Khand and Nirvana are essentially the same, once again semantics.

    "Sach Khand: The Realm Of Formless Truth

    ...After experiencing the fourth realm, he becomes Self-realized. Once a devotee attains Self-realization, he becomes situated in this final realm of Truth, the ultimate stage of Spiritual experience of linking with the Absolute. ... It's also called in the Gurbani Chauthaa Pada (Fourth State) because it is beyond three qualities of Maya.... Param anand (Bliss), Jeevanmukti (living liberated)... state of absolute Peace and tranquility, and so on. It is a state of existence in which the Aatmaan of the individual is linked and absorbed in the Mool, like a drop of water in the ocean.
    ...
    At this point, the seeker has become one with his Mool (Source, Origin, Joti-Svaroopa...) within. Here, he identifies himself with the One True, Formless, Infinite Consciousness. Linked with his Origin, the Absolute Reality, his Soul links with the Spirit just as rivers merge with the ocean. This is the journey of an Spiritual aspirant. This journey begins from a material plane and ends at the Spiritual Plane. But, the SGGS asserts that those who have completed this journey are very "rare" in this world.

    Source: http://www.gurbani.org/articles/webart11.htm

    <<The problem is, I can see and understand the reasoning behind both of these positions, and I have a really hard time figuring out what to believe on this issue. How can I resolve this conflict?>>

    Ultimately practice is what matters.

    Sikhs, such as myself sincerely have a lot of love, respect and reverence for the Buddha and his teachings but ultimately place thier faith the Guru, Dharma and Sangat as His teachings were complete, recorded and finalized through The Guru.

    The Guru Granth Sahib has plurality at its heart and recognises that the teachings have been re-transmitted through a Noble Lineage which included Ram, Krishna and The Buddha, but recoginise that Enlightment will come through Nanak.

    Ākẖahi keṯe kīṯe buḏẖ.
    The many created Buddhas speak
    Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ang 6

    Nānak kahai kahāvai so▫e. ||5||12||
    Says Nanak, I speak as He causes me to speak. ||5||12||

    Thanks and hope that helps,

    Lotus
     
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  11. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    its not that I am anti-semantic, but I did have a glance at the website, Source: http://www.gurbani.org/articles/webart11.htm

    on first glance, a very good website, good Sikh ones are few and far between, most have an agenda, this one seems quite delightful, on first glance anyway
     
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  12. Original

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    Your welcome
     
  13. Original

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    OTE="HFTarasque, post: 200897, member: 20677"]Hello everyone, I have received some very good answers to these questions on another forum and they recommended that I come here for a better discussion.

    As the title of the thread suggests, I am currently exploring Sikhi as well as other religious beliefs (including Buddhism and Radha Soami, though I have issues with following a human master). I come from a Christian background, but I would not describe my beliefs as being particularly Christian, as I believe in an all-pervading God who is impersonal, and I believe in systems such as reincarnation and karma. So, I have many questions about Sikhi as I am on my search, and I was hoping that you all might be able to answer some questions for me. None of these questions are meant to challenge your beliefs at all, but merely to express my own doubts and challenges that I face in my search.

    1. Buddhism and Sikhism I think are largely similar, but they have a major difference that I find hard to reconcile. Buddhism (at least Theravadan and Zen) teaches that the existence of God can't be answered for sure, and the same can be said for the soul. Instead the Buddha says that we should forget such questions, and instead focus on achieving Nirvana, as these questions impede our spiritual growth. Sikhi (as far as I am aware) states that our ultimate purpose is to merge with God, and reach Sach Khand. The problem is, I can see and understand the reasoning behind both of these positions, and I have a really hard time figuring out what to believe on this issue. How can I resolve this conflict?

    All religions profess one and the same thing, but in they're own way. Sikhism is a way of life that places lot of emphasis on "truth" and truthful living, all else follows. God in Sikhism is timeless, featureless, shapeless and cannot therefore be grasped by the senses nor can it be analysed through human reason. At best it could be realised through honest labour [kirit], charitable disposition [seva] and nam jap [meditation]. The immortality of the soul is the bedrock of Sikhism - it is eternal. And, since it is non-matter it cannot be debated or discussed. You either believe or you dont. Your spiritual self will develop wiith time, so don't worry. If anything, enjoy and learn through socialisation.

    2. Scriptures are obviously very important to Sikhs, as the SGGSJ forms the foundation for Sikhi. My question regarding this is, why is reading the Bani repeatedly so important? Is kirtan more beneficial than to practice simran and meditation on the atman inside? I can understand reading it for understanding, and of course reading scriptures at different times in our lives, we will receive different lessons. But is inward meditation not more valuable, provided it is done with a proper spiritual understanding?

    More than scriptures are values and humanitarian principles which underpins Sikh thought and are considered indispensable. Reading or listening of Bani is recommended but is not essential; contemplation is equally rewarding for spiritual progress. Bani in Sikhism is God. And, to be connected to the best of one's practical endeavours is a state of bliss - an analogy would be when you was dating this girl and wanting to be connected to her 24/7. Similarly, an exalted soul would want to be connected to his/her lover forever, hence the reason for nam simran [remembering the lord]. Sikhism promotes the good, the beautiful and the just God - look for the three in the external world [grishat jeevan] before diving within. With age comes maturity and with maturity comes wisdom - exhaust the physical inclinations before embarking upon spiritual exploration [recommendation].

    3. As I am young and come from the West (I am only 18), I have certain Western values which I find hard to reconcile with both Sikhism and Buddhism, even though I may find the religion very appealing. Specifically, I feel very strongly about gender equality, and that differences between men and women are almost entirely (if not entirely) cultural rather than biological or spiritual in nature. This means that I am a strong advocate of homosexual rights, gay marriage, and transgender rights. I realize that Sikhi has done a lot to stand up for many of these things, but at the same time, I see that homosexuals are not allowed to be married with the anand Karaj. As a Westerner, this seems to be the same religious dogmatism that I tried to escape when I left Christianity, but maybe I am misunderstanding it.

    Sikh God is non-discriminatory, so whatever make or model you is and whatever your personal inclinations are does not invalidate your affilliation. These are social issues and not spiritual. In Gods eyes all are weighed even stevens. As with all things, evolution plays a significant role in mapping and shaping the human genome and Sikhism will too in all eventuality accept values and views of contemprory social trends and adopt accordingly.

    4. Marriages. As far as I understand, Sikhs do not condone love marriages, and instead practice arranged marriages. What is the harm in a love marriage, or in dating? Again I realize I come from a Western perspective, but I fail to see how these things are harmful to your spirituality. If all of your energy is focused on finding a partner, or on sexual promiscuity, or the like, I can definitely understand it. Also, why can an inter-faith marriage not be done with the Anand Karaj? If a Sikh wants to marry a non-Sikh, isn't that their choice? And if they want to do the marriage the Sikh way, is that not displaying the proper respect to Sikhi? For a long time, I dated a Muslim girl and we planned to be married. Sadly that didn't happen, but I can't imagine missing out on someone who may be the love of my life, because I am limited to only marrying someone of my religion.

    This is very much social and not spiritual. Take for example the future King of England, Prince Charles. What are the chances of him marrying a check-out girl at a local store with whom he's fallen madly in love whilst visiting the store - love at first sight syndrome ? Quite remote, I'd imagine ! That's because society demands some intervention and respect for protocols over personal choices. From a spiritual perspective, the atman [soul] must do that which is in unison with parmatma [God] and act in accordance with its will. You exercising your freedoms as of rights will slow spiritual progress because true journey is singular, and your Juilet is God [connect within] and not this new find. However, your new find could be your soulmate, in which case it becomes your meditation, your salvation and a chance to culminate the form into the formless. Thus in unison with the divine reality.

    5. Again as far as I understand, Guru Nanak Ji shunned religious labels. He stated "There is no Hindu, there is no Muslim." So therefore, why have his teachings started a religion? This is something I haven't been able to find much discussion about, and I am quite curious about it. Has Sikhism fallen prey to the same dogmatism that he taught against?

    Sikhism is a way of life [philosophy] and because it exponentially admits mystical experiences it is classified as a religion.

    6. The SGGSJ was named as the last Guru for the Sikhs. Does this mean there will never be another Guru? What about when we move out of Kal Yug and into the next age, will there be another succession of Gurus?

    Guru is, Guru will be and Guru has always been - the word [sound current], it manifests in all creation.



    I'm sorry for the long list of questions. I look forward to hearing your responses. Thank you.[/QUOTE]

    Your welcome

    Originalji, please try and avoid red as it is an admin colour, thank you
     
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    #12 Original, Mar 24, 2015
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  14. singh_man

    singh_man Canada
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    Good replies original ji. But one question.. what is contemplation? How does one do it? What are the different methods?
     
  15. singh_man

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    Actually.. turned out to be 3 questions ;-)
     
  16. Original

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    Singh Man Ji

    I'll respond in the same numerical order with which you've raised your questions:
    1. Legal definition of contemplation is foresight or forethought, that is to say, to have entertained mentally the possibility of an event occurring further in time. But from a spiritual perspective its long-winded and has two prerequisites. First, is concentration. This is to still the mind by fixing gaze on an external object. For example, striped shirt; study the vertical stripes with eyes open and then close eyes and visualise those stripes and when image starts to fade reopen eyes and repeat. This is the first stage of mind stillness through spot concentration. It paves the way for meditation.
    2. There are a number of different techniques for meditation, but in relation to contemplation, this is a forerunner. For example, meditation by thought is carried out with eyes closed. The mind having been successfully disciplined through concentration can now hold on to a thought and retrack it way back in time. From nam simran perspective the idea is to go back to the mool mantar and connect with the sound within.
    3. And, finally contemplation. This is state
     
  17. Original

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    Contemplation in spiritual sense is the absence of the mind from its immediate surroundings and being in union with nature.

    Hope I've been able to help, although, it's not an area of personal expertise.
     
  18. singh_man

    singh_man Canada
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    Thanks original - but I think#3 got cutoff. Regarding #2 with mool mantar, do you listen to it or say it to yourself over and over again? and what do you visualize? How do you keep the mind from wandering? I'm interested in the experience of nam Simran.

    Cheers.
     
  19. Original

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    Singh Man Ji

    I'll respond in the same numerical order with which you've raised your questions:
    1. Legal definition of contemplation is foresight or forethought, that is to say, to have entertained mentally the possibility of an event occurring further in time. But from a spiritual perspective its long-winded and has two prerequisites. First, is concentration. This is to still the mind by fixing gaze on an external object. For example, striped shirt; study the vertical stripes with eyes open and then close eyes and visualise those stripes and when image starts to fade reopen eyes and repeat. This is the first stage of mind stillness through spot concentration. It paves the way for meditation.
    2. Meditation is the second step. There are a number of different techniques for meditation, but in relation to contemplation, this is a forerunner. For example, meditation by thought is carried out with eyes closed. The mind having been successfully disciplined through concentration can now hold on to a single thought and retrack it way back in time. From nam simran perspective the idea is to go back to the mool mantar and connect with the sound current within.
    3. And, finally contemplation. This is a state of perfect harmony when an exalted soul having mastered the previous two can now dwell upon the divine reality with eyes open. Much like the icon of Buddha smiling but with eyes open. A good example is afforded by Arjun, one of the brothers of the 5 pandus of Mahabharata - the archer. In a competition to win the princess's hand in marriage contestants were set the task to pierce the eye of the fish by shooting an arrow. The fish was suspended above a pot of burning oil below. The objective was to look in the pot of oil below and aim above into the eye of the fish. Arjun succeeded in piercing the eye and when questioned how he did it, he replied, "all I could see was the eye".

    Good morning Sir !

    Please accept my sincere apologies for failing to deliver the text in full. I've pasted on to this reply together with your recent questions answered, you'd be be able to enjoy the two in full.

    Much obliged!

    Here goes: First n foremost one need to have an idea about what one is searching for, that is to say, philosophising. Having narrowed ones search one is more focused in finding the particular from the general - tuning in to be more precise.

    Perennial philosophy [Eastern] tells us to sit and meditate. What does it mean in laymans language ? It means to consciously breakaway from the hustle bustle of everyday activity and sit down to still the mind on an internal thought or an external object. Sikh Gurus dug themselves bunkers below ground to escape from the physical noise outside to listen to the music melody inside. But why ? Because Sikhism professes that to be the ultimate purpose of ones journey here on this physical plane of existence [jeevat maryia bhavjal tariya].

    But before we embark upon this music melody chase one need to fully understand the criteria within which it operates. There are conditions which must be met and satisfied. Although, basic in nature, it does however, have significant implications on spiritual progress. The soul cannot be suppressed and denied certain wants [morally justifiable] no matter what religious opinion. Pursuit of legitimate pleasures and fanciful inclinations do not act as a hinderance, but rather gravitates us closer and closer to our true home, namely, the self [Waheguru]. Theives, drunkards all makes n models of this wonderful constitution have access to Waheguru irrespective of trackback record.

    First Principle: have you discharged your physical obligations, that is, social [dues to society including your work], personal [dues to kin n kind] and finally religious [whatever denomination]. Sikhism expects the seeker to fulfil their Grishat Jeevan obligations before homing-in on spiritual expedition. Once worldly commitments have been met the seeker then shuts his/her eyes to connect within. Then and only then you begin to get an inkling of the wonders of the Shabd-Guru. Now this here isn't guaranteed, for some seekers have set for eons and not connected and there are those who've in the middle of nowhere unwittingly got connected. How does that work ? This is where the immortality of the soul comes into the equation. Dependent upon ones karm does one earn connection, Nanak says, that too, "by the grace of God [satgur parsad]".The question is, do I believe Nanak ? And, if affirmative then rest assure because Nanak [word guru] will find you irrespective of position, posture, location in time or space. And, hence the three pillars kirit kar, vand shak and nam jap are considered 3 steps for spiritual alignment.

    The operative word in Sikhism is "hukum rajayi chalna" - live within Eternal Law, be of righteous disposition always, and attend to your self within and not necessarily be the sheep following in line another sheep.....and, since this is lila [playground] according to Sikh Theology play with whatever takes your fancy. There can be no heaven without hell.

    I'll now attend to your questions in order of receipt:
    1. Mool mantar is a preamble to the rest of Guru Ji's bani. You can listen to it with your eyes and not necessarily with the ears. Mool mantar defines what Nanak's God is. It's every where. Look out into creation and align your thought in appreciating Ek On Kar, the good, the beautiful and the just God - permeating every fibre of creation. As a discipline [Sikh], orally reciting mool mantar is recommended because as I said above, who knows when the lightening is going to strike - you have to be available [as in 3, pin plug].
    2. Parrot phrasing is not how I see Sikh; I'd rather put on a good tune and boogie the night away to mellow the soul or personally speaking sing a good tune to align my true nature [romantic]. Of course, there comes a time in human evolution when you're at a threshold to be totally and utterly contemplating Waheguru Waheguru Waheguru to merge and become "bani" the sound and no longer have the physical body. That will be our physical demise - death time! But to deny and turn away from the beautiful life God has given you in all its diversity at an age when you should be living it is to misunderstand human birth. Yes, where nature has in one way or another been inequal in bestowing what all creation has otherwise, then 24/7 engegement is understandable.
    3. You visualise on your very self and ask; " what did I do today, have I trodden on the path of a good human being, have I fulfilled all my obligations, have I not caused injuries to another's feelings, have I lived the day to the maximum of my human potential", if the answer is yes to all of the above, consider yourself to be the alive mool mantar [sargun]. Remember, you are but manifestation of the Shabd-Guru albeit in a physical frame. And, this body is a field of invisible vibrations [Waheguru], musical notes on a violin string
    4. The mind will be so absorbed because satguru [shabd] have taken residence within thee. Even when consciously you want it focussed elsewhere it will want to come back to God consciousness territory.

    Many thanks -
     
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  20. HFTarasque

    HFTarasque
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    Hello everyone who has responded; thank you very much for the responses. Original, harry haller, your responses in particular have given me a lot to think about. Unfortunately I have been involved in quite a long argument on another forum regarding this topic, and I simply don't have the energy or the time to debate anymore. Thank you once again.
     
  21. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    thats ok, stop debating and just share
     

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