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India Akal Takht Bans Guru Granth Sahib In Homes With Bars

spnadmin

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Akal Takht bans Guru Granth Sahib in homes with bars

Yudhvir Rana,

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Akal-Takht-bans-Guru-Granth-Sahib-in-homes-with-bars/articleshow/22671838.cms


Besides bars, the Sikh families using substances that are against the basic tenets of the religion have also been cautioned against keeping the holy book in their homes.


AMRITSAR: Acting on suggestions and complaints of some faithful, Akal Takht - the highest temporal body of Sikhs - ruled on Tuesday that Guru Granth Sahib can't co-exist in houses that have bars or with things proscribed by the religion, such as tobacco, intoxicants and halal meat. The decision was taken at a meeting of the top Sikh clergy at the Akal Takht secretariat in Amritsar.

Akal Takht jathedar (chief) Giani Gurbachan Singh said keeping the Granth Sahib in houses of Sikhs who had made liquor bars in their drawing rooms was tantamount to disrespect for the holy book, which is considered a living embodiment of Sikh gurus.

Besides bars, the Sikh families using substances that are against the basic tenets of the religion have also been cautioned against keeping the holy book in their homes.

"Sikh families who consume halal meat, smoke hookah, charas (hashish) and tobacco are also banned from having the parkash of Sri Guru Granth Sahib in their homes. We have not only given directives but also advised Sikhs to abstain from such practices else religious action would be taken against them on receiving any such complaint or violation," said Singh.
 

Luckysingh

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I have always had some thoughts about this issue !
Back in UK, I am aware that many many Sikh families keep Guruji at home in a small designated bedroom.
What i found in my experience was that most of these sikhs were and are the famous Ramgharias that have come Africa.
Most of them drink quite openly and they happily keep plenty of liquor at home.
They have hit our headlines with similar issues of having function rooms adjacent to and owned by the gurdwaras that also openly serve liquor at punjabi functions.

I have a feeling that these trends originate from their larger communities back in Africa.
 

spnadmin

1947-2014 (Archived)
SPNer
Jun 17, 2004
14,500
19,205
I have always had some thoughts about this issue !
Back in UK, I am aware that many many Sikh families keep Guruji at home in a small designated bedroom.
What i found in my experience was that most of these sikhs were and are the famous Ramgharias that have come Africa.
Most of them drink quite openly and they happily keep plenty of liquor at home.
They have hit our headlines with similar issues of having function rooms adjacent to and owned by the gurdwaras that also openly serve liquor at punjabi functions.

I have a feeling that these trends originate from their larger communities back in Africa.
Luckysingh ji

Your comment underlines some deep concerns I have about the news reported in this article. Ramgharia have traditions that are different; and they have hit the headlines because of public protests, organized on the Internet and mushrooming into boisterous controversies. In some cases police had to be called.

In principle I agree with the decision. On the other hand, I sincerely hope that the decision was motivated only by the maryada, and not by political pressure coming from groups that have had historical antipathies toward the Ramgharia.

To note: Ramgharia are from the original Sikh misl and made heroic contributions in Sikh history. The tendency to ostracize them has made Ramgharia extremely insular. No bridge can unify a divided panth without wisdom on the part of bridge-builders.
 

Tejwant Singh

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Jun 30, 2004
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Lucky Singh ji,

Guru fateh.

You are mistaken. This was not originated from Africa nor is it only a Ramgharia thing. It has been a common practice in India in the homes of all Sikhs who drank.

We lived in India as a joint family. My Granddad and my dad never drank but my Chacha did along with his officer friends from the Army as Ferozepore was a huge military garrison and still is. People drank and smoked in our house at will. No one gave a second thought about the the room where SGGS’ parkash took place along with many other sehaj paaths’ bhogs, Karah Prasad prepared during every Sangrand when everyone gathered in the gurdwara at home..

Drinking alcohol and/or letting others to smoke in the house then was a normal thing and may be still is the case in India. However, smoking has been curtailed in many Sikh and non- Sikh houses because of the continuous hammering of understanding of the mals of the second hand smoke in the diaspora.

My older brother who lives in Surrey, BC had the best and well known bar in his house in Vancouver which was the watering hole for many other Sikhs. He also had the SGGS there as it is the norm in our family.

One day, he met Bhai Jeevan Singh and all changed in his life. He stopped drinking, dismantled the bar, and opened the first Khalsa School, also The Khalsa Credit Union, the first Sikh bank with the help of his trust that the family founded.
He is totally a different man today.

Since I took Khandei de Pahul on the day of Vaisakhi in 1988, no one can bring alcohol in my house nor do I offer it to anyone. Before that, I used to drink and had a bar too.

None in our family which is not too small, in the US and Canada offers any alcohol. But it is sad to say, this practice continues in two of my sisters’ homes in India and I am sure in many other households over there.

I am totally against this edict because we are encouraged to have SGGS at home and dwell in Gurbani understanding, so it can be practiced in our daily lives.

Akaal Takhat’s prohibition of having the SGGS at homes that serve alcohol is very myopic and anti Gurmat in my opinion because it cannot prohibit SGGS in the computers, in Cd’s, Gutkas, Amrit keertan pothis and omnipresence of SGGS in the ether with the help of internet.

The ironic part of all this is that we get Hukumnaamas and live keertan from Harmander Sahib daily via internet or satellites in all houses even the ones with the bars.

So, what is the point of this self-defeating prophecy, one should ask?

Akaal Takhat should encourage people to practice the teachings of the SGGS so that they can get rid of the mals they have, not forbid the tool box that is the eventual help and remedy for the same.

Akaal Takhat should also force the Badal clan, which it cannot; for giving liquor licences in exchange to fill their personal coffers. There are more liquor stores in Punjab than the tea stalls.

Lastly, one should ask what should be the distance between the SGGS and the place that serves alcohol which could be your neighbour with the shared wall.

This edict makes SGGS, our only Guru nothing more than an idol, which is rather an insult to Sikhi.

Tejwant Singh
 

Luckysingh

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Dec 4, 2011
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Luckysingh ji

Your comment underlines some deep concerns I have about the news reported in this article. Ramgharia have traditions that are different; and they have hit the headlines because of public protests, organized on the Internet and mushrooming into boisterous controversies. In some cases police had to be called.

In principle I agree with the decision. On the other hand, I sincerely hope that the decision was motivated only by the maryada, and not by political pressure coming from groups that have had historical antipathies toward the Ramgharia.

To note: Ramgharia are from the original Sikh misl and made heroic contributions in Sikh history. The tendency to ostracize them has made Ramgharia extremely insular. No bridge can unify a divided panth without wisdom on the part of bridge-builders.

Don't get me wrong here !!
As you are probably aware, I have never spoken out against any jathabandis, sects or sub branches of sikhs, even the controversial 3HO have never had any derogatory remarks from me !!:peacesign:
I actually know very little about Ramgharias, their origins and their reasons for separate gurdwaras..etc.. BUT, I was speaking for the average general sikh population of UK, who have come across some items of popular news within our community.
The talk amongst most sikhs and especially youths is that Ramgharias have made themselves well known for keeping Guruji and liquor in the same home. (I personally had 3 good friends who came under this same umbrella!!)
Then the issues of halls and function rooms adjacent to the gurdwaras has also made public news numerous times.
These are just the first few things that come to the mind of most youth if you ask them ''What do you know about Ramgharias that makes them different?''
(We had often discussed this amongst our Ramgharia friends many times!!)
Along with some other answers, you will also hear about their distinctive turban styles and also the men keeping very small stubbly trimmed beards that lads would call 'the Five O'clock Shadow'!-Although this has become fashionable with mainstream non-amritdhari sikhs in recent years.
Then you also hear about their association with French cars and their being more modern than other punjabis...etc....
It's always been these society made stereotypical labels that become the root of many lads jokes about people in our own society !

I didn't mean to speak in any derogatory manner but i was just giving us all outside the UK, a little idea of what the different images are portrayed as amongst sikhs across the UK in general from what I have gathered with my experience.
 

spnadmin

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Luckysingh ji

In no way did I think you were speaking in a derogatory manner. I was glad you brought the topic up. Concern comes in when major disruptions occur because self-appointed saviors of the panth kick up a storm of "panthic rage" and the police have to be called in to be a buffer zone. What motivated the sundesh?

I am actually seconding Tejwant Singh ji's expression that blanket condemnation misses many of the fundamentals of Sikhi by a mile.
 
Jul 18, 2007
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London
Unfortunately Guru Granth Sahib has already become an idol to the majority of Sikhs.

Our practices depict this, ie Akhand Path's, covering with rumalay and having peeks to get "darshan", majority just bowing because its the done thing, walking backwards to not "turn your back on" Guru after matha tekh, brushing/washing the roads at nager kirtans before the Palkhi holding Guru Granth Sahib etc.

God forbid anyone to actually read and understand Gurbani, as they are too busy doing all the above formalities.

This is just another layer of coating added to the "Sikh Police Force" to uphold in various corners of the world in the name of Seva and to have it out with non-conformers and for the SPGC Mafioso to look like they are doing a great job, whereas taking on tough decisions they are left with fingers in their mouth's and meetings to be reconvened at limitless dates till the issue subsides.
 

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