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Why Do Many Faiths Recommend Self-denial such as Fasting or Shunning Luxuries?

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by Admin Singh, Mar 16, 2010.

  1. Admin Singh

    Admin Singh
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    Why do so many faiths recommend self-denial such as fasting or shunning luxuries?
    By Ajit Singh Sahota, Citizen SpecialMarch 13, 2010


    The Sikh faith teaches temperance and moderation, and so neither fasting nor feasting are encouraged.

    If the goal of fasting and avoidance of luxuries is to control the mind and to turn inward, then the Sikh faith teaches that this is only possible through reflection on Naam or the Word of God. The goal of human life is to discover the light of God within and reunite with the divine. All religious practice must be focused on achieving this goal.

    God has given us the human body, which houses His divine light. It is therefore important that the body be nourished and cared for. Fasting or deprivation of the body through wilful hunger is not considered a spiritually beneficial practice. A Sikh is encouraged to eat in moderation to sustain the body. Similarly with respect to luxuries, the principle of moderation is central.

    The Sikh faith teaches that one should permanently avoid those things that are harmful physically, mentally or spiritually. It is for this reason that all intoxicants like alcohol, tobacco, etc. are forbidden to Sikhs.

    The key to spiritual progression is not in temporary self-deprivation. One may feel a sense of achievement after fasting or a period of abstinence; however, true spiritual progression must be marked by a permanent change. Through reflection on the Word, one must find the much greater pleasure that is available through spirituality. As a result, one achieves a permanent measure of self-control and the desire for worldly luxuries and indulgences naturally declines and disappear. The constant company of Lord God is cherished.

    Ajit Singh Sahota is a retired biologist from Agriculture Canada and a founding member of the Sikh National Archives of Canada.
    © Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen
     
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  3. harbansj24

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    It is observed that Sikhs who practice Simran do develop lot of self control and do not given to temptations and wrong doing.

    On the other hand the notional Sikhs (and their number is considerable) who do not practice Simran go berserk with indulgences. I have not been able to understand complete lack of self control in the second type!
     
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  4. Embers

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    Interesting observation, Harbansj Ji. :)
    My understanding is that indulgence comes from desire and desire it self is due to the gunas (or force of nature). It is nature, the outer world, which stimulate the vrittis (impressions) of the mind, leadnig the ahankara (ego sense) to identify with them as "me and mine". This process is rapid as it is a part of thought itself and so can go unchecked.

    The impulse from vrittis manifests itself as action which comes with its result in the form of reward (statisfied desire) or frustration (a sense that something has stopped me), thus strengthening the belief in "me as doer and achiever" (ahankara). The thought that vrittis should be obeyed is connected with the result of the action, it a cause-effect relationship, reinforcing us to act again on our desires.

    Simran still this, or at least allows us to see that there is action in the actionless state of mind also. In my humbile opinion this is the wisdom which the Gurus blessed us with.

    Respectfully, Ambers.
     
  5. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    common psychology ( Fasaii Chalo Ji in Punjabi !!) just keep banging...carrot and danda..whatever it takes to instill fear and obedience...

    GURMATT is now where near all this..its clear that the CREATOR BUILT THIS BODY for His own RESIDENCE..we are just the CARETAKERS...Harmandir Har Sajjiah...we are DUTY BOUND to take GOOD CARE of it..best foods, best clothes, best health....Healthy Mind..Healthy BODY...Hassan kuddan mann Ka Chao..laugh..be happy..enjoy the BODY...and Make HIS DAY !! You will NOT get another chance....DONT be like the "tenants from HELL"..who write graffitti on rented walls..sweep rubbish under the capets.....ride the bannisters..scribble and scratch marble floors...**** bricks in toilets to block them....cut the trees in the garden...BE "SIKH" TENANTS..who keep all walls cleaned daily..floors swept..carpets cleaned...bannisters for holding...polished marble floors..trees watered.......then the LANDLORD WILL BE HAPPY.happymunda
     
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  6. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    Gyani ji

    I don't clean my walls every day :eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek: The message however is a good one. A Sikh does not make sacrifices to hoard merit points with the Creator, almost like a piggy bank of collected sacrifices to use later as an insurance policy against hard times after death. A Sikh helps as help is needed and does what he/she can to set matters straight as required. Sometimes that does require personal sacrifice. But sacrifice is not the goal, The goal is to restore goodness to the world around us here and now in praise of the Creator who is everywhere.
     
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  7. Tejwant Singh

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    Harbans ji,

    Guru Fateh.

    You write:

    What does "Sikhs who practice Simran" mean and what is it modus operandi? Can you express that in your own words for me to have some better understanding?

    Is there a physical data or research done by some credible Universities or think tank groups with volunteers for them to come to the above conclusions?

    I would love it if shared with us the same.

    What do the above category does that make them berserk? It can not be in the inactions and what kind of indulgences and in what manner?

    People in both these researches had to define in concrete terms what practicing Simran is and how it is done. Can you also share that with us?

    This is truly fascinating and I am glad you mentioned that their number of the latter group is considerable which indicates that some kind of data based research has taken place.

    Please share with us the findings of the above.

    Thanks & regards

    Tejwant Singh
     
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  8. harbansj24

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    Tejwant Singh ji,

    What I have written is just subjective observations of friends, relatives, acquaintances and strangers.
    I am not aware of any database created or any research findings on this topic

    Simran as I understand is simple Naam jap. What i have learnt is that Simran can be done at any time at any place in any posture. There are no limitations.
    Whenever thouhts wander and they get into an area of any negative contemplation or wrong doing then Simran does help to arrest such thougts.
    Otherwise too Simran helps to cleanse the soul of accumulated dirt over a period of time.
    Bhai Vir singh ji has described this wondrous process in detail in I think Guru Nanak Chamatkar.

    This is again based on personal subjective obsevation. I had admitted in the above post that I do not understand why such persons go berserk with indulgences. By indulgences, I mean the undesirable types such as intoxications, adultry, wrongful and dishonest accumulation of wealth, being tyranical towards the weak, gluttony etc.
    As per my very subjective and non scientific observations people who practice Simran hardly ever fall into these traps.

    If a scientific study is conducted on the effect of Simran, the results could be very revealing.

    However a Ludhiana based organisation known as "Sarab Rog ka Aukadh Naam" claims to have data about patients sufferring from chronic and incurable diseases to have benefitted greatly from Simran and listening to Gurbani and understanding it. And very sensibly they do not encourage stopping of on going medical treatment.
     
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  9. Tejwant Singh

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    Harbans ji,

    Guru Fateh.

    Thanks for your response.

    The reason of my asking the question was multifolds and I will explain the reasons why. I am a novice to the Gurmat side of Gurbani as compared to many devout people like yourself and others.

    In 1988, when I was still single, I was introduced to the Dodra Group during my trip to Vancouver and fell in love their hourly Simran twice a day and their way of doing Keertan. I started going to their Samagams in Los Angeles in some people's houses as they were not allowed to do in the Gurdwaras then. Now, some Gurdwaras allow them. I used to go with Bhai Jeewan Singh ji from AKJ and he is very unlike AKJ who is a friend of the family. In fact Bhai Jeewan Singh ji performed my anand Karaj 21 years ago today at Alhambra Gurdwara in Los Angeles. He was also instrumental in opening of Khalsa Schools and Khalsa Credit Union in Vancouver BC. The more one talks about his great attributes, lesser the words one can find to express them.

    Coming back to the Dodra group, although I enjoyed their ways of doing Simran and Keertan, there were a couple of things that preturbed me from the very beginning.

    The first one was that rather than greeting each other with fateh, they greet each other with " Dhan Guru Nanak", which is ok. But the most egregious part I noticed was men hugging women in a long close embraces which really unsettled me. Then I saw some of women during samagam breaks giving leg massages to the some who wore blue cholas. I personally know some infidelities taking place there and no one really cared about that.

    The straw that broke the camel's back was when a gentleman from Canada belonging to the Dodra jatha called Balraj Singh was convicted of rape and spent 5 years in the Canadian jail. It took sometime to bring him to justice.

    There is lots of Sangat that still visit Dodra in Bathinda district and they have samagams all around North America including Las Vegas once a year.

    So, this is the group that is famous for naam simran and Sangat doing keertan. No raagi jathas are hired. But some of their actions are very questionable.

    My question was based on this objective incident of the particular group. I have no idea if you are familiar with this group.

    Regards

    Tejwant Singh
     
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  10. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Just some interesting backgrounds...

    Once upon a time I had a very large poster EXPOSING the ANTI-GURMATT wriitings /actions of the DODRA Originator Jaswnat Singh and the actions of Balraj Singh in Canda. It was sent out by the WSO...World Sikh Organsiation and for putting up in Gurdwaras to alert the sangats. ( Unfortunately this poster was fraudently taken from me by a DODRA supporter in the guise of taking it to make a photopcopy....and then he flatly refused to return it...almost like the Rochestor DVD of Prof darshan Singh and Lamba's "borrowing" the Original DVD). That poster quoted a lot from books by Jaswant Singh as to how he was Guru nanak..blah blah..

    The Baba From USA Wallah recently in the news vis vis absconding with teenage daughters of a sikh..was also brought in by the Malaysian Dodra Chapter a few years ago wehn the USA wallah Baba was a NOVICE (Now he has a massive complex in Gurgaon india)

    Dodras publish and use books by some one called KHOJI...whose explanations of Gurbani are weird....:happykudi::veryhappymunda::happysingh::crazy:
     
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  11. BhagatSingh

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    Narayanjot kaur ji, I think that's the point of other faiths. You are sacrificing for some sort of perceived good.
    People used to (and still do) fast and shun luxuries so that they do not become attached to them and the only thing that enters their mind is God.

    You need to free yourselves from all senses to sense the unsensible God.

    Its not to earn merit points. :)
     
  12. harbansj24

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    Tejwant Singh ji,

    Gurfateh.

    I have occasionally attended kirtan by the Dodra group when they came to our local Gurudwara. But I did not notice anything amiss as described by you. Ofcoarse I have never been to their Samagam in Dodra so I cannot comment on the goings on there.

    Just as I was reading your mail, I heard Gyani Pinderpal Singh's voice on the TV. I went and sat in front of the box. He was doing Katha on the Shabad "koi Jan Har sio deve Jor". He was saying that Guru ji says that blessed is the person who introduces anyone to "Har" . But then he also warned that the highest resposibility also rest with the person to set a personal example and he should do nothing that would disillusion the soul who has been newly intoduced to "Har". Because such disillusionment is most painful and the person would be wary of treading that path again!
    But I am sure that such heartbreaking examples would be fewer than the personal examples of Bhai Jeevan singh ji, Bhai Vir Singh Ji, Gyani Sant Singh ji Maskeen, Gyani Pinderpal Singh ji etc. who renew and energise our faith in Simran as propogated throughout in SGGS!
     
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  13. spnadmin

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    Bhagat ji

    The life of a Sikh is a life of moderation, not a life of renunciation. There is no need to "free" yourself from all senses to sense the unsensible God. sukhmani Sahib tells us that He delights in His Creation. So why would He want you or me to enjoy what has been created less than He enjoys it?

    This comes from the mouth of the Guru. Please enjoy it.

    <table align="center" border="0" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" width="98%"><tbody><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਸਲੋਕੁ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">salok ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Shalok:
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਬਹੁ ਸਾਸਤ੍ਰ ਬਹੁ ਸਿਮ੍ਰਿਤੀ ਪੇਖੇ ਸਰਬ ਢਢੋਲਿ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">bahu saasathr bahu simrithee paekhae sarab dtadtol ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">The many Shaastras and the many Simritees - I have seen and searched through them all.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਪੂਜਸਿ ਨਾਹੀ ਹਰਿ ਹਰੇ ਨਾਨਕ ਨਾਮ ਅਮੋਲ ॥੧॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">poojas naahee har harae naanak naam amol ||1||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">They are not equal to Har, Haray - O Nanak, the Lord's Invaluable Name. ||1||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਅਸਟਪਦੀ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">asattapadhee ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">Ashtapadee:
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader"> 9

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਜਾਪ ਤਾਪ ਗਿਆਨ ਸਭਿ ਧਿਆਨ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">jaap thaap giaan sabh dhhiaan ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Chanting, intense meditation, spiritual wisdom and all meditations;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਖਟ ਸਾਸਤ੍ਰ ਸਿਮ੍ਰਿਤਿ ਵਖਿਆਨ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">khatt saasathr simrith vakhiaan ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">the six schools of philosophy and sermons on the scriptures;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਜੋਗ ਅਭਿਆਸ ਕਰਮ ਧ੍ਰਮ ਕਿਰਿਆ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">jog abhiaas karam dhhram kiriaa ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">the practice of Yoga and righteous conduct;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਸਗਲ ਤਿਆਗਿ ਬਨ ਮਧੇ ਫਿਰਿਆ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">sagal thiaag ban madhhae firiaa ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">the renunciation of everything and wandering around in the wilderness;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਅਨਿਕ ਪ੍ਰਕਾਰ ਕੀਏ ਬਹੁ ਜਤਨਾ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">anik prakaar keeeae bahu jathanaa ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">the performance of all sorts of works;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਪੁੰਨ ਦਾਨ ਹੋਮੇ ਬਹੁ ਰਤਨਾ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">punn dhaan homae bahu rathanaa ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">donations to charities and offerings of jewels to fire;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਸਰੀਰੁ ਕਟਾਇ ਹੋਮੈ ਕਰਿ ਰਾਤੀ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">sareer kattaae homai kar raathee ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">cutting the body apart and making the pieces into ceremonial fire offerings;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਵਰਤ ਨੇਮ ਕਰੈ ਬਹੁ ਭਾਤੀ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">varath naem karai bahu bhaathee ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">keeping fasts and making vows of all sorts
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਨਹੀ ਤੁਲਿ ਰਾਮ ਨਾਮ ਬੀਚਾਰ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">nehee thul raam naam beechaar ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">- none of these are equal to the contemplation of the Name of the Lord,
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਜਪੀਐ ਇਕ ਬਾਰ ॥੧॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">naanak guramukh naam japeeai eik baar ||1||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">O Nanak, if, as Gurmukh, one chants the Naam, even once. ||1||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਨਉ ਖੰਡ ਪ੍ਰਿਥਮੀ ਫਿਰੈ ਚਿਰੁ ਜੀਵੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">no khandd prithhamee firai chir jeevai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">You may roam over the nine continents of the world and live a very long life;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਮਹਾ ਉਦਾਸੁ ਤਪੀਸਰੁ ਥੀਵੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">mehaa oudhaas thapeesar thheevai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">you may become a great ascetic and a master of disciplined meditation
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਅਗਨਿ ਮਾਹਿ ਹੋਮਤ ਪਰਾਨ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">agan maahi homath paraan ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">and burn yourself in fire;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਕਨਿਕ ਅਸ੍ਵ ਹੈਵਰ ਭੂਮਿ ਦਾਨ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">kanik asv haivar bhoom dhaan ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">you may give away gold, horses, elephants and land;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਨਿਉਲੀ ਕਰਮ ਕਰੈ ਬਹੁ ਆਸਨ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">nioulee karam karai bahu aasan ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">you may practice techniques of inner cleansing and all sorts of Yogic postures;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਜੈਨ ਮਾਰਗ ਸੰਜਮ ਅਤਿ ਸਾਧਨ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">jain maarag sanjam ath saadhhan ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">you may adopt the self-mortifying ways of the Jains and great spiritual disciplines;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਨਿਮਖ ਨਿਮਖ ਕਰਿ ਸਰੀਰੁ ਕਟਾਵੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">nimakh nimakh kar sareer kattaavai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">piece by piece, you may cut your body apart;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਤਉ ਭੀ ਹਉਮੈ ਮੈਲੁ ਨ ਜਾਵੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">tho bhee houmai mail n jaavai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">but even so, the filth of your ego shall not depart.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਹਰਿ ਕੇ ਨਾਮ ਸਮਸਰਿ ਕਛੁ ਨਾਹਿ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">har kae naam samasar kashh naahi ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">There is nothing equal to the Name of the Lord.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਨਾਨਕ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਜਪਤ ਗਤਿ ਪਾਹਿ ॥੨॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">naanak guramukh naam japath gath paahi ||2||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">O Nanak, as Gurmukh, chant the Naam, and obtain salvation. ||2||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਮਨ ਕਾਮਨਾ ਤੀਰਥ ਦੇਹ ਛੁਟੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">man kaamanaa theerathh dhaeh shhuttai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">With your mind filled with desire, you may give up your body at a sacred shrine of pilgrimage;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਗਰਬੁ ਗੁਮਾਨੁ ਨ ਮਨ ਤੇ ਹੁਟੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">garab gumaan n man thae huttai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">but even so, egotistical pride shall not be removed from your mind.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਸੋਚ ਕਰੈ ਦਿਨਸੁ ਅਰੁ ਰਾਤਿ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">soch karai dhinas ar raath ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">

    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਮਨ ਕੀ ਮੈਲੁ ਨ ਤਨ ਤੇ ਜਾਤਿ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">man kee mail n than thae jaath ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">but the filth of your mind shall not leave your body.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਇਸੁ ਦੇਹੀ ਕਉ ਬਹੁ ਸਾਧਨਾ ਕਰੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">eis dhaehee ko bahu saadhhanaa karai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">You may subject your body to all sorts of disciplines,
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">



    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਮਨ ਤੇ ਕਬਹੂ ਨ ਬਿਖਿਆ ਟਰੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">man thae kabehoo n bikhiaa ttarai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">but your mind will never be rid of its corruption.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਜਲਿ ਧੋਵੈ ਬਹੁ ਦੇਹ ਅਨੀਤਿ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">jal dhhovai bahu dhaeh aneeth ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">You may wash this transitory body with loads of water,
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਸੁਧ ਕਹਾ ਹੋਇ ਕਾਚੀ ਭੀਤਿ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">sudhh kehaa hoe kaachee bheeth ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">but how can a wall of mud be washed clean?
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਮਨ ਹਰਿ ਕੇ ਨਾਮ ਕੀ ਮਹਿਮਾ ਊਚ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">man har kae naam kee mehimaa ooch ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">O my mind, the Glorious Praise of the Name of the Lord is the highest;
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਨਾਨਕ ਨਾਮਿ ਉਧਰੇ ਪਤਿਤ ਬਹੁ ਮੂਚ ॥੩॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">naanak naam oudhharae pathith bahu mooch ||3||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">O Nanak, the Naam has saved so many of the worst sinners. ||3||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">


    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਬਹੁਤੁ ਸਿਆਣਪ ਜਮ ਕਾ ਭਉ ਬਿਆਪੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">bahuth siaanap jam kaa bho biaapai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Even with great cleverness, the fear of death clings to you.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr></tbody></table>
     
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  14. Tejwant Singh

    Tejwant Singh United States
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    Harbans Singh ji,

    Guru Fateh.

    Thanks for the response.

    Dodra incident was not merely one in that group and their main selling point is Naam Jap, Simran which means repeating Vaheguru for atleast an hour early in the morning and the same in the evening which is quite energetic and it does make one energised and 15 mins of gupat- silence simran only in the morning in which one can hear people snoring and please do not take me wrong, I am not pulling anyone's leg here.

    These are the facts, as are the long timeless hugs among men and women and also the infidelities. And the selling point of all this is Simran- repetition of Vaheguru.

    One can attain the same affect by changing the word Vaheguru with Om, Jesus, Mohammed, or any other generic name and cultivate the same emotions by repeating it again and again which is done daily in many other religions. Evangelical TV shows and Christian crusade shows demonstrate people in tears and emotionally sapped 24-7.

    So, this is not something unique to Sikhi or to one particular religion. Shia Muslims show the same kind of emotions when they flog themselves with chains and get blooody. The bloodier they get, the better they feel as Muslims.

    All the armed forces in the US and I am sure also in other countries have their war songs that they sing when they do their morning exercises. Same goes when they go for their long runs.

    All these repetitive actions do energise the people- the participants and I am sure their endorphin levels go up which is normal and natural which makes them feel high.

    From the above one can draw the conclusion that there is nothing magical about what word one uses to energise oneself in unison with others or alone.

    My question to all is that, is the repetition of the word Vaheguru magical and if it is then are 'magical' words part of Gurmat ideals given to us in SGGS, our only Guru?

    Or is the real meaning of Naam Jap, Simran totally different than we have been practicing for all these years?

    Yes, as mentioned above, repetition does give us the wings but is it in the word or in the modus operandi where one can use any word?

    Sikhi is based on evolving ourselves from the inside. Darwin explained to us through his theory about the physical aspects of evolution but our Gurus showed us the mental, spiritual and inner aspects of the evolution and also gave us the tools to do the same which Darwin could not supply because physical aspects of evolution are in nature's hands whereas the inner aspects have to be nurtured with the help of Gurbani.

    The inner tools given to us by our Gurus lay down the foundation to cultivate an inbuilt second nature with the help of nurturing, so we can cope with the outer aspects of the nature in the best possible manner which manifest outwardly through our words, gestures, actions and deeds.

    Gurbani calls them 5 thieves - Kaam, krodh, lobh, Moh, Hankaar.

    So, my other question to all is that, is Naam Jap and Simran just repeating the word Vaheguru for an hour or more or less, or is it actually Shabad Vichaar through reading, studying, understanding and putting Gurbani into practice so we can lasso the 5 thieves in order to better our conduct in our lives and live by examples so our kids and other members of our social circles and beyond can do the same via emulation?

    We must keep one thing in mind that our inner behavioural changes reflect in our everyday lives and demonstrate the world who we really are.

    In other words, it is our duty to be outstanding because we have chosen through our baana to stand out.

    Harbans ji, Please do not take me wrong, I admire all those great Sikhs that you have mentioned above and have learnt a lot from them, from some, luckily on a personal level.

    They are the ones who gave us the motivation, tools to forge ahead. We are their flag bearers now. The responsibility of the evolution of Sikhi from the within solely lies on us and with the help of a wonderful forum like this, we can make a difference and help to empower others. But in order to empower others we have to know how to use Gurbani to generate this power within ourselves first.

    Naam jap, Simran, the way it is done now may make us 'feel good' for some transitory moments but the goal of a Sikh is to expand this 'feel good' short span so that we can make this our second nature, in order to do good.

    So, what is the modus operandi to be an outstanding citizen as a Sikh?

    Thanks

    Tejwant Singh
     
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  15. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    GURBANI doesnt ask us to "SHUN"....not good food..not best silken clothes..not the latest jaguar Limo...BMW etc...we are free to enjoy the FRUITS of Honest Labour and waand chhako.
    Our Gurus were SACHA PATSHAHS....their Darbars made even the Mughal Emperors JEALOUS...Battle of Bhangani was due tot he Parsadi Elephant and expensive Chnadoa gifted to Guur Ji..and earlier battles were due to mughal jelaousy about the excellent horses, hunting eagles in Guru Jis possession...

    NO..Jios..Our GURBANI teaches us to LIVE in this world the BEST WAY we can..and still LOVE the CREATOR (for giving us the BEST life)!!!! So go ahead and ENJOY it..just make sure you earn it through Honest Labour..and do share some of it (10%) as Bill Gates Does...on this score Warren Buffet and Bill gates are good "sikhs"..he he he..:happykudi::hopmad::veryhappymunda::happysingh:
     
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  16. Tejwant Singh

    Tejwant Singh United States
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    Saw a bumper sticker on a very old tattered car once:

    "My other plane is also wingless".
     
  17. harbansj24

    harbansj24
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    Tejwant singh ji,

    Gurufateh

    Your concerns are very valid.
    But if you listen to Gurbani, every Shabad propagates Naam jap or Simran.
    Gurbani very boldly says that the real cure for everything lies in Naam.
    Doing Simran Consciously for a limited time is only the very beginning. the ultimate aim is "Gurmukh rom rom Har dhiyavey" or every pore of a Gurmukh exudes Simran.

    I can only once again try to briefly say in an inelegant manner what that Blessed and Genius Gurmukh Bhai Vir Singh ji has beautifully explained. Such explanation of Guru Nanak's Philosophy can only flow from a person who has had personal experience.

    Simran has first to be done by uttering the name by ones tongue. It should be done whenever one remembers to do it. As the concious frequency increases, one does start experiencing a level of feel good and slowly a realisation starts to dawn as to what may be "wrong doing". But we being human beings do tend to brush it aside and are again tempted to indulge in it. But a person who is even into brief spans of Simran will start feeling a small and brief tweak of guilt but he will try to brazen it out. But when he again gets into Simran, he again has a rethink on his actions. So it is case of 2 steps forward and one step backward. As this process advances, the layers of filth accumulated by wrong actions begin to thaw and starts to give way. "Bhariye mat papan ke sang, oh dhope naven ke rang"
    As time passes, this process of simran begins to grow on you and after long period running into years, decades or even a life time, this process is likely to become automatic. As it is said it depends on the "kamai" or earnings of the person.
    So when this process starts to become automatic, the person starts exuding Simran and ultimately every pore exudes simran or "Gurmukh Rom Rom Har dhiyave"
    When this stage is reached then the person becomes "Jeevan Mukt" or he has achieved the state of "mukti" during his life time. This though is very rare . Now we will not get into a dicussion of reincaranation because Gurbani does not clearly spell it out. Suffice it to say that if the task is left incomplete during this birth and it requires another vehicle to complete the journey, then so be it!

    Its only Sikhi that has given so much importance to Nam Jap. Guru Nanak ji has very boldly stated in his discussion with the Sidhs that though meditation, Yoga, prayanam, tapasya, self denial etc may have its uses, the ultimate can be reached only through Nam Jap.

    I again very humbly submit that I have said the above very inelegantly and I have only tried to say a very small part of what Bhai Vir singh ji has said so beautifully and in a detailed manner in Guru Nanak Chamatkar.
     
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  18. BhagatSingh

    BhagatSingh Canada
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    Narayanjot Kaur ji, I am not satisfied.

    One, the the shabads does not say to NOT do any of it. It says that "contemplating naam" is better. From which I conclude that the other religions are fine but the Sikh way is better.

    Two, it begs the question. Why is contemplating naam better?

    I disagree with Jarnail Singh ji's position as well. Enjoying good foods and cars, etc. is falling into the illusion of Maya.
    Guru Arjan Dev ji is telling us to make EVERY effort to avoid it (thereby enabling us to cross the worldly ocean).


     
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  19. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    Bhagat ji

    I am sorry you are not satisfied. This is the source of my understanding.

    <table align="center" border="0" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="0" width="98%"><tbody><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਗਉੜੀ ਮਾਲਾ ਮਹਲਾ ੫ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">gourree maalaa mehalaa 5 ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">Gauree Maalaa, Fifth Mehl:
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਹਰਿ ਬਿਨੁ ਅਵਰ ਕ੍ਰਿਆ ਬਿਰਥੇ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">har bin avar kiraaa birathhae ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Without the Lord, other actions are useless.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਜਪ ਤਪ ਸੰਜਮ ਕਰਮ ਕਮਾਣੇ ਇਹਿ ਓਰੈ ਮੂਸੇ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">jap thap sanjam karam kamaanae eihi ourai moosae ||1|| rehaao ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">Meditative chants, intense deep meditation, austere self-discipline and rituals - these are plundered in this world. ||1||Pause||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਬਰਤ ਨੇਮ ਸੰਜਮ ਮਹਿ ਰਹਤਾ ਤਿਨ ਕਾ ਆਢੁ ਨ ਪਾਇਆ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">barath naem sanjam mehi rehathaa thin kaa aadt n paaeiaa ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Fasting, daily rituals, and austere self-discipline - those who keep the practice of these, are rewarded with less than a shell.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਆਗੈ ਚਲਣੁ ਅਉਰੁ ਹੈ ਭਾਈ ਊਂਹਾ ਕਾਮਿ ਨ ਆਇਆ ॥੧॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">aagai chalan aour hai bhaaee oonehaa kaam n aaeiaa ||1||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">Hereafter, the way is different, O Siblings of Destiny. There, these things are of no use at all. ||1||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਤੀਰਥਿ ਨਾਇ ਅਰੁ ਧਰਨੀ ਭ੍ਰਮਤਾ ਆਗੈ ਠਉਰ ਨ ਪਾਵੈ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">theerathh naae ar dhharanee bhramathaa aagai thour n paavai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Those who bathe at sacred shrines of pilgrimage, and wander over the earth, find no place of rest hereafter.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਊਹਾ ਕਾਮਿ ਨ ਆਵੈ ਇਹ ਬਿਧਿ ਓਹੁ ਲੋਗਨ ਹੀ ਪਤੀਆਵੈ ॥੨॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">oohaa kaam n aavai eih bidhh ouhu logan hee patheeaavai ||2||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">There, these are of no use at all. By these things, they only please other people. ||2||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਚਤੁਰ ਬੇਦ ਮੁਖ ਬਚਨੀ ਉਚਰੈ ਆਗੈ ਮਹਲੁ ਨ ਪਾਈਐ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">chathur baedh mukh bachanee oucharai aagai mehal n paaeeai ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Reciting the four Vedas from memory, they do not obtain the Mansion of the Lord's Presence hereafter.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਬੂਝੈ ਨਾਹੀ ਏਕੁ ਸੁਧਾਖਰੁ ਓਹੁ ਸਗਲੀ ਝਾਖ ਝਖਾਈਐ ॥੩॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">boojhai naahee eaek sudhhaakhar ouhu sagalee jhaakh jhakhaaeeai ||3||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">Those who do not understand the One Pure Word, utter total nonsense. ||3||
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="ggs">ਨਾਨਕੁ ਕਹਤੋ ਇਹੁ ਬੀਚਾਰਾ ਜਿ ਕਮਾਵੈ ਸੁ ਪਾਰ ਗਰਾਮੀ ॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="subhead">naanak kehatho eihu beechaaraa j kamaavai s paar garaamee ||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffecec"><td class="shlok">Nanak voices this opinion: those who practice it, swim across.
    </td></tr><tr><td class="rmenuheader">

    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="ggs">ਗੁਰੁ ਸੇਵਹੁ ਅਰੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਧਿਆਵਹੁ ਤਿਆਗਹੁ ਮਨਹੁ ਗੁਮਾਨੀ ॥੪॥੬॥੧੬੪॥
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="subhead">gur saevahu ar naam dhhiaavahu thiaagahu manahu gumaanee ||4||6||164||
    </td></tr><tr bgcolor="#ffffec"><td class="shlok">Serve the Guru, and meditate on the Naam; renounce the egotistical pride from your mind. ||4||6||164||</td></tr></tbody></table>
     
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  20. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    This world is MAYA..we have to live in it..so ENJOY IT..BUT dont get carried away by it..as sole pursuit ..is the Gurmatt Way.
    Why do you think Gurus Hargobind Ji and Gobind Singh ji bought the very best blue Arabian Horses..had Kalghis, wore the best silken clothes...had THRONES..and Gifts such as the very best chandoas, Parsadee ELEPHANT..Hunting HAWKS...???? Were these Gurus any less in "naam Contemplation" than Guru nanak ji who WALKED the earth in a simple chola, and CLOGS ?? Fact is GURU JI shows us by Personal Example...of BOTH Extremes...the choice is up to us....failure will be OURS....( such as too much enjoyment...BMW 757 or a ferari.....when a Maruti will do... and we sink too deep ?? then dont blame the Guru..but ourself...........BUT dont go and stay in a thatched HUT like a slumdog..and be PROUD of that.. THAT type of haumaii also SINKS ??? )
     
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  21. BhagatSingh

    BhagatSingh Canada
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    Jarnail Singh ji, I would like to see this sentence in some form in SGGS.
    Because I have not yet encountered anything like that.

    Something about that just bugs me. Please don't take what I say the wrong way. There are five observations I made. No judgements...
    1. We have assumed that the Gurus are equal in "naam contemplation".
    2. They are at extremes and yet they want us to be in moderation.
    3. Also that could also mean that their views did not match up all the time.
    4. The above seem to be very human qualities.
    5. Some people will be (greatly) offended by #4.
     

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