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How Do I Start?

May 10, 2011
16
17
Vaheguru,

Apologies if this is posted in the wrong section.
I was born in Punjabi Sikh family and live in the United Kingdom. My father was never very religious but my mother does attend the guru ka ghar and has faith.
I lost my faith at some point in my life and developed some bad habits, smoking, drinking, drugs etc. This experience has brought me to Guru Granth Sahib once again.
The question I have is how do I start my journey?????
At the moment I try to read the Japji Sahib in the morning around 6am before I go to work and that about it at the moment.
Can someone tell a structure and plan what to read and when???
At the moment im reading it for readings sake and would like to progress further.
All help is appreciated because I do not want to leave this earth without experiencing what you good people have.

Love and respect
Satbinder Singh
 

spnadmin

1947-2014 (Archived)
SPNer
Jun 17, 2004
14,500
19,209
re: How Do I Start??

Satbinder ji

You have already made a start! A great start! Japji Sahib every day is more than many do. Even those who claim to be devout.

Do not rush through this. Akaal is timeless and is not clocking your progress with a stop watch. And avoid mortals who watch, weigh and measure you.

Pick one thing, drugs drink smoking ...work on one. If you believe you are addicted join a 12 step program, like AA or CA. The precepts of AA are entirely consistent with Sri Guru Granth Sahib Maharaj and that will be a comfort. One night years ago I was listening to a Hukamnama and katha on my computer, and someone listening with me, recovering from alcoholism, said, "That is just like the Big Book (AA manual). Guru Nanak is OK with me." I was bowled over by this statement, and did some research. It is true.

Try it and see.

If you give yourself time you will find that the shabad will fill your heart and mind and there will be little room left for distractions. More later. Thanks for your question.
 
May 10, 2011
16
17
re: How Do I Start??

Many thanks for the almost superhuman speed of the response ha
I did go to AA for a bout 3 years but never felt 100% comfortable. It does have a underlying christian based recovery. The 12 steps are copied ( not exactly ) from the book of David and AA it self was a offshoot of another christian fringe cult the Oxford group. Anyway im not bashing AA because it does help people. In many ways AA has brought me back to the Sikhi. they do belive in service and a higher power.
So should i just stick to reading the Japji shaib in the morning at the moment??
 

spnadmin

1947-2014 (Archived)
SPNer
Jun 17, 2004
14,500
19,209
re: How Do I Start??

In many ways AA has brought me back to the Sikhi. they do belive in service and a higher power.
That is fine. i was just throwing out an idea. I do know people who cannot get turned on to AA.

Read Japji but also think what it means pauree by pauree. You also have taken a good step in coming to SPN. All Internet forums have a downside, in that people with rigid mindsets try to tell you how to think and feel. That happens here too. The thing you want to do is find the threads, and the members, who think seriously about Gurbani and discuss Sikhi in a nonjudgmental way. There are those who listen for the message. There are those who administer a bitter pill (their intentions are good but useless). Seek out those who truly do allow themselves to be guided by ShabadGuru.

I don't want to say more, because rule 1 is do not rush. Rule 2 is protect your soft spot, your soul. Don't let yourself be torn to shreds. :)
 
May 10, 2011
16
17
re: How Do I Start??

Thank you very much.
I have been in your site for a while now and find it fantastic.
I will continue to try and live the gurus hukam one day at a time.
Keep you posted

Love and respect
Satbinder Singh
 

Harry Haller

Panga Master
SPNer
Jan 31, 2011
5,769
8,185
51
Re: How Do I Start??

Satbinderji,

There are some similarities in our circumstances in that I also allowed myself to lose faith and be swayed by many many addictions, and like yourself, I found AA not quite for me. I am not a fantastic fan of prayer, so I will concentrate on the addiction portion of your post.

Speaking personally, I found that trying to concentrate on one thing at a time, meant I indulged myself in the other addictions to make up for the lack of the addiction I was giving up!

I have not yet felt the grace and power of the creator yet, so I am speaking with very little authority here, but I would imagine that once you have the love and desire for Ek Onkar, you will possibly find it easier and easier to get your fix from god rather than other substances. Although different things work for different people, I think moderation is the key here. I have met many reformed drug addicts and alcoholics, and they all had one thing in common, they were only one drink, or one fix away from total and complete addiction again. Also anything in your system will only take you further away from the truth, so it becomes a simple choice in your everyday life, I would say try and replace the times when you indulge, with thoughts of the creator, listening to peaceful shabads, and you will possibly find yourself high, but it is a completely different high, its a spiritual high given from god. I know what it feels like to be chemically high, and there is always a payback, a come down.There is no comedown from being high on God, I only have to think of my dear mother, with her eyes closes, concentrating on my father reading the SGGS, her face a picture of ecstasy to know it exists.

You will eventually get to the point where it is a choice of spiritual highs, or chemical highs, just try and feel that spiritual high more than you want the chemicals, and you will be fine. One day, instead of that haunted scared and brainwashed look you see in some recovered addicts, you will have come to that point by choice alone, not fear, but take each day slowly, and try and ingest less and less, and bond with the creator a bit more.

Unfortunately I cannot tell you how to get that spiritual high, I will leave that to more learned members of this forum, but I have an insight that once you have felt it, it will dwarf anything you could ingest.

Remember that not everyone will understand how hard it is, do not beat yourself up if you make the wrong choice today, there is always tomorrow, you can wean yourself of anything you do not wish to do, these are challenges in your life that you must win to move onto the next step, maybe you have been given these challenges for a reason, I do not know.

I asked my father once whether his battle with addictions was hard, he looked at me like I was on a different planet, I pursued it, was it hard for him growing up, and being surrounded by women, drink, drugs, etc. Father replied that he had never been drawn to all those things, and that finding his faith was quite easy. Well, it wasn't easy for me, and it sounds like its not easy for you, maybe some people are blessed with an easy ticket, maybe that is the result of karma, I do not know, but people like us, we have to conquer these demons while finding the truth (just to make it a bit more interesting), but conquer we must, and will, one day, I guarantee you, you will look at a pint of beer, or a smoke, and you will just think, I'd rather feel closer to the truth than further away, and that will be your choice, out of wisdom and enlightenment, not fear

god bless
 
May 10, 2011
16
17
Re: How Do I Start??

Harry Bhaji,
Great to hear from you.
we both know there are thousands of addcits out there in the Asian community ( alchohol I belive being one of the most prominent) but always gets swept under the shame carpet. I tried many ways to give up and then gave up giving up. Addiction can sometimes be a great convincer to give spirtuality a go if your luck, alas many are not so lucky like me and you ( having this dialogue at least means we know we have a addiction problem).
I did like some of the things in AA to begin with and there are some great lines in the big book ( AA bible) such as we aim for spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection but I found it to over powering for my like liking.
I have began to get up at 5.30 am ( amrit vehla) and shower and attempt to do Japji sahib and found this really sets me up for the day.
i have some addictions to conquer yet but all in good time.
Please keep in contact and i will support you as much as you can support me.

many thanks

love and respect
 

Harry Haller

Panga Master
SPNer
Jan 31, 2011
5,769
8,185
51
Re: How Do I Start??

I think your doing better than you think my friend, certainly better than me, I did conquer my addictions, but not by prayer, but by sewa, strangely I found it easier than praying!

I will take great support though from your path to god through prayer, that is still something I struggle with
 

KulwantK

SPNer
Oct 31, 2007
164
40
Re: How Do I Start??

Listen to Kirtan a lot! Doing Seva will help a great deal! Keep good company; stay away from those who like to drink and such. If you can make the time, you can take up something you have never ever done before; say, gardening, or volunteering at a clinic.
At night, start doing Kirtan Sohila right before going to sleep. You will find this most helpful!
All the best to you!
Wahe Guru Ji Ki Ka Khalsa,
Wahe Guru Ji Ki Fateh!
 

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