Am I A Sikh Still?

Harry Haller

Panga Master

I have lately been questioning my very faith, I still feel the same, but how I see my faith and ideals are getting further away from the what I consider the norm of Sikhism. I am entering what I would call Atheist Sikhism, I accept in full the ideology of Sikhi, the equality, the love, the sewa, the understanding of thieves, but the one thing that I am unable to complete is the relationship with God. The essence of Creator that lives in my head is my best friend, my companion, I do not worship it, I do not try and please it, or behave like a shy bride towards it, Creator remains my mentor, someone I look up to, I put Creator on a pedestal, but not to worship, to learn from, to emulate, to copy,

I also have a firm non belief in anything that goes beyond the laws of nature, which means no miracles, no ghosts, no goblins, nothing. I would not dream of 'praying' to Creator to say make my dog better, it would be a monumental waste of time, and in insult to myself and Creator, I choose this subject because a very good man, a very decent man did pray for my dog, and my dog got better, and it invoked thoughts in me, thoughts of how powerful prayer is, and if I could get a dog cured from prayer, than anything is possible through prayer, I spent an entire night convinced that the object of life was to follow the Hukam, meditate and pray, and whatever came from that was good and right. However, if you draw a line from that scenario, and follow that line, then who is left to push themselves, who is left to invent the next jet engine, to write music, to paint art, it becomes a superstition, a belief in the unknown, a ritual, all the things in fact that Guru Nanakji warned against, Sikhism stands by science, stands by nature, it is not a hocus pocus chanting meditation leave the rest to God type of religion, or is it?

If my dog suddenly gets better from a good man praying for him 100 miles away, then this is a ****** up world we live in, and I refuse to have anything to do with such. Maybe it is closed minded, but it is only the practical and the pragmatic that I find attractive in Sikhism, maybe I am wrong, but I have a strong feeling everything else is Vedic intrusion.


No, Harry. You are no longer a Sikh.

Of course I am lying to prove a point. What was your reaction when you read my post? Did you think that I have no right to tell you that you are not a Sikh? Ah, Harry my friend, I think you have nothing to worry about.

Harry Haller

Panga Master
Au Contraire Bhenji,

I have much to worry about!

Every web page I look at on the internet, every conversation I have with a fellow Sikh, every Gurudwara I visit, I am reminded more and more that either Sikhism is going down the path of slowly adopting every facet that Guru Nanakji steered us away from. I am slowly reading through the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, and that is all I have, my own interpretation, be it correct or wrong, but it is all I have, the only sangat that seems to be worth lauding is the one I find here, a group of people whose only interest in life is learning and advancing, rather than just going through the motions, or keeping parents happy, or society,

When feels so out of step with the mainstream, sometimes it is easier to redefine labels for yourself.

I have decided to pursue the practical, pragmatic, opinionated, stand on the wall and be proud, road to Sikhism, sure I will find myself wrong sometimes, sure I will pursue the wrong path from time to time, but I will take any correction with grace and pleasure at having learned something, this seems to be a better path for me than sitting on the fence watching the world go by, and attempting to agree with everything.

Only Creator can be truly aware of everything, the rest of us have to study the words left behind and make our own stand.

In that light, I am rejecting the spiritual facet, for the present time anyway, until it does not feel like the emperors new clothes,

If and when Creator decides I should embrace it, I surely will at that point,

There is a time for spirituality, and there is a time to fight, while idealistically they go hand in hand in Sikhism, when one has to fight, and cannot fight with the benefits of spirituality due to lack of understanding, then in my opinion, one should keep fighting, rather than figure out a way to combine the two for a future battle.
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There you go, Harry ji. You may not know exactly what is right, but you know what is wrong. Your motives are pure and honorable, and you are able to recognize the same quality in others when you see it. Despite your doubts about your faith, I get a feeling that you are very much on the right track. The fact that it is so much on your mind makes me think that you are in a time of major change and growth, always a good thing.

Yes, it makes me sad too when I see how selfish and ignorant some people in the world can be. It just means the good ones among us will have to work harder to try to combat it. It makes us sound like some sort of crime fighting super heroes, doesnt it? Haha.
Hukam ander Sab ko, Bar Hukam Na koi - Nanak hukme Je Bhujahe ta home kaehee na koi

ਹੁਕਮੈ ਅੰਦਰਿ ਸਭੁ ਕੋ ਬਾਹਰਿ ਹੁਕਮ ਨ ਕੋਇ ਨਾਨਕ ਹੁਕਮੈ ਜੇ ਬੁਝੈ ਤ ਹਉਮੈ ਕਹੈ ਨ ਕੋਇ


Harry ji
All is well, you can be assured that if sikhi is your chosen path then you are in the right direction.
From reading your posts I get the assumption that you do feel kind of trapped sometimes. This is a perfectly natural encounter that we all experience from time to time. I get the impression though that you are at this stage in your life after having gone through huge obstacles, mistakes and lessons that the average Joe doesn't encounter. Even though most will say (ego) my situation is much worse than anybodys or they didn't have the consequences that I had ...etc... - a classic saying is if one person hears that someomes dog is dead, they will claim that my dog is even deader!!!
Saying all this though, I feel you are aware of this scenario but STILL in all honesty you can look and will find it difficult to find anyone else with the same problems that you may have had to face, you probably would be correct and right in terms of your personal mind battles.
You also question everything now because you wish you had questioned before, hence you could have been saved from some of your personal disasters.
This questioning and realising is a GOOD thing. It makes you sure of your decision at that very time and place. It's something that we should all do and that is to be sure of our decisions at that specific time and place. For instance, making a choice now and then we look back at it and realise it was a bad decision is not the way to be. BUT, if we look back and realise it was the right decision at that time, then this is good. I mean Bush was desperate to declare war after 9/11, yes at that moment it was the best and right decision. But after a while it became apparent that it was unneccesary and when this was realised they should have just pulled out, But there was too much pride to go back on the initial decision. If they did pull out as soon as they realised, but simply openly admitted that the original declaration was right at that time, then we ALL would have accepted the U turn and understood the decision. But it is the refusal to admit that always causes problems. You personally do try very hard to admit and accept, and this can only be good.
Your approach is to be sure you take the right steps in the right direction because in the past you feel you took too many wrong steps, although the direction may have seemed right at the time though. Living in regret is what you try not to do, but you try hard to learn from your mistakes. A good quality you have is that you realise and admit your mistakes- there are too many who don't even realise their mistakes, and even if they do, then they would be too proud to admit and accept.
BUT, you shouldn't be in regret and I think this is what you try very hard to do. But your life encounters do play a huge part of where you are now. Live for now and the future, is something you are always trying to achieve. It's human nature that if we make a mistake, we convince ourselves not to do it again, but instead we end up doing another different mistake before we know it. This is how the universe seems to operate, live and learn, all along, because we are always sinners that need forgiveness, but we can try to accomplish as many good qualities possible along the way.
The advantage you do have Harry ji is that you can look around at others that are living, making choices without much thinking, going with their flow, doing their duties without realising...etc... and you can 'see' that it's not right or good, all about ego and power, they are not gaining self development or satisfaction but seem successful to the rest of the world whereas you can see they are stuck in a time warp and just wasting their lives in a sense. This is exactly what Guru Nanak was trying to make us ALL see. But, obviously we didn't expect to gain this quality after going through the rough.
This is also a good quality that unfortunatley we only seem to attain after our own negative experiences. This is how we become better with and within ourselves.

The SIKH path is Fantastic in this aspect as it HELPS us evolve and develop into better beings through devotion and control of our own minds.
This is why for me and you sikhism is a path that we should hold on tightly to. It is not about becoming a better being by way of rituals like visiting holy shrines, not eating this or that, having so called holy days or days where you don't eat and fast ... etc...
ALL these are uneccessary for someone with basic sikh intellect. As sikhism does just that, and gives us logical intellect. We need to purify our mind before we wash our hands, so to say. You can see clearly with your sikh intellect that halal,circumcision, bathing in ganges,giving a murti milk ...etc... is NO GOOD if your mind isn't purified by the process.
I am more than convinced that sikhism is the path for me, even though I used to feel mix n matched with my upbringing. I am more than convinced that it is the path for you from the way you conduct and express yourself on here. This is a nice thing to have in common regardless of our backgrounds.
They always say that you should NOT feel that the whole world revolves around yourself, but I think it is OK to feel this in the sense of your MIND. So, thinking that your mind is all there is, (it is, since only you have the power to control) and there are billions of other minds around you on different wavelengths, therefore there is in fact only your own mind and the creator that YOU CAN experience-YOU CANNOT experience others minds or have control over them. In this sense you can view just yourself (mind), universe and creator, and thats it.
But in our physical bodies and for all bodily requirements we NEED to accept that we are just a small dot in the universe with billions and trillions of other dots around us. This is definitely a view where we should NEVER see just our body and the world revolving around it only.
It's interesting that we can not only perceive but actually FEEL that our very own minds are unique in this whole world and there is just that mind and the only thing it can tap into if we try, is the creator, nothing else, we can never tap into any other mind whatsoever.
So, you questioning sikhi, faith and others is perfectly normal given your experiences.
You have every right to feel that the universe is revolving around you. This is the only way that I think we can tune into the same creator.
You can look around you and personally see so many of us sikhs and non-sikhs that are lost in their own minds. This is all you need to see, no need for judging, but just a glad feeling that you are not there any longer.
I'm sure that this is how you feel at times and it is good and you should consider yourself lucky as it comes only with experience.
The only thing we can all do with care is help the sangat among us all, where we can. Sangat can always be there to help us in areas we need. This must have been one of the primary reasons for gurus to address the sangat among us, as we can all help to nourish and enrich each others minds so we can all finally tune into the ONE.

I apologise if I have stated a charachteristic that you feel doesn't apply to you. I am not trying to cause any offence, but I have just given you my assumptions- I am no expert but I do feel that I can sense your vibes, so to speak.
So, trying to ignore influences around you 24/7 and setting your mind to the goal of becoming a pure khalsa is what we all should be doing and worrying about, instead of worrying about other's mind's. This is what we should keep reminding ourselves 24/7. ie.. I should do this or say this because such and such will think that, or I shouldn't do this or that as such and such will feel this or that.. ..WE WASTE TOO MUCH of our lives doing this. If we just relaxed and focused on tuning our OWN minds then we wouldn't make as many mistakes.

Lucky Singh
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Harry Haller

Panga Master

Many thanks for taking the time to reply.

To be fair all obstacles and mistakes were mine and mine only, I have not been dealt a fairly bad hand in the game of life. I am actually ashamed of my scenario, it is no comparison to say someone who has an illness, or deaf, or blind, my scenario was born out of my own hands only, I did this to myself...

On the whole I do not see my past as a huge disaster, there was a point, it gave me learning and educated me. My dad always used to tell me not to buy hulking great old cars, and now I know why, he also told me to avoid gambling and drink, again, now I know why, of course there were many things he had no idea I would try, but I know why one should not do any of these things too, so I know quite a lot about what not to do lol

I am the king of U turns brother, if a direction does not feel right, I have no qualms about a U turn, this does not sit hugely well with wife and stepson, as everything planned invariably changes as circumstances change. I could say that being too eager to change is as bad as not changing at all.

Luckyji, you have actually hit on something here, my 'feeling of being trapped' is actually confirmation that some of my old habits are starting to creep in, not to a point of life changing proportions, but enough to mentally throw me.

I agree with you that Sikhism is the only religion I could love, for its sheer pragmatic and non ritual facets.

However, I must take a slightly different path at present, and that is one of following Hukam. This is a time for action, not thought, discipline, not understanding, it should not be a long path before I hopefully rejoin you all in the pleasures of Bani and contemplation, but there is a war going on out there, and time is running out,

Thanks again for your post, very intuitive, very good to read kudihug


Harry ji,
One if the main points I was trying to emphasise is that a good quality such as admitting your mistakes openly is a very nice approach for anyone to be doing. It is a shame that many among us cannot even come to terms with their own wrong doings. There are ofcourse those that repeatedly sin without even giving much thought.
Learning is a huge component of personal development, wether one learns from their own mistakes or others mistakes, books, wiser beings,elders, more educated, even your own children can teach you a thing or two. We all need to be learning and developing until the very end.

Sat kartar
Lucky Singh
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