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How Important Is Matha Tekking?

Luckysingh

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Re: How important is Matha Tekking

Quote from above
Once you have offered your head in "Matha Tek" to Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, what else is needed

Ambarsariaji, I have to agree with your friends quote.
Although, many times I feel it disrespectful if I just matha tek and walk straight out without turning around, so if I haven't for some reason sat down after, then I will try to make the effort to turn around or it just makes me feel guilty for not sitting ! even if I have a valid reason for not sitting.

Now, here in Vancouver I have noticed that there seems to be this tradition with a lot of the sangat to first matha tek, then get up and circle around the Guru Granth Sahib one time and then sit down. This often involves them going on to the so called stage and then back down. It is something that I don't remember encountering much in UK. I think there were very small numbers that did this back there, but here the numbers are huge.

In all honesty I have never done this, my personal reason I shall give-

When I was new here, I had my aunty with me and one time I offered a 'rumalla' to the gurdwara with my matha tek. Now, my aunty told me that I should matha tek, make the offering and then walk or circle around the Guru Granth Sahib. - I strongly refused to do this as deeply I felt this to be the offering of my head. As I am not amrithdhari, I felt that I haven't offered my head to the amrit baptism then it is wrong for me to falsely offer it here.
This is just my own understanding but I strongly felt this way inclined.

I do still feel sometimes that it should only be done by those willing to offer the head. Although, no one has ever stated this, but It's just my assumption.

When I'm sitiing there and I see others taking this circle route around the Guru Granth Sahib, I know I shouldn't say or feel this,- But, I can't help thinking that 'is this person really prepared to offer their head ?', especially if they are not amritdhari.
I know this is probably a biased and wrong thought, but in all honesty I can't help it.
I sometimes get a little annoyed if I feel an unsuitable person is taking the circle,or if I feel that they haven't washed and got up at amritvela -I know that's bad, but I'm being honest about a weakness here. Just because someone's amritdhari doesn't mean they are more prepared than the non-amritdhair to offer their head, I know and understand.

Perhaps someone may make this act after matha tek a little clearer.
 

Gyani Jarnail Singh

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Re: How important is Matha Tekking

Lucky singh ji..From where did you get the idea that the GURU only wants "amritdharee heads" and NOT the non-s..." The GURU is for ALL..not exclusively for amrtidharees..or nons....SGGS makes this clear...its UNIVERSAL GURBANI form the Creator..and we are Kudrat ke sabh bandeh...Ek noor te sabh jag upjiyah..
 

Gyani Jarnail Singh

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Re: How important is Matha Tekking

Our Guru has no want.
well in a matter of speaking..maybe..BUT Guru Gobind Singh ji did stand up on stage and demanded a Head five times..and He got them. I am not sure he "wanted" the heads ???/ Guru nanak ji also wrote..je ko prem khelan ka chao..sir dhar gali meri ao.....again.."want" or "need"..or what ?? icecreammunda
 
Oct 21, 2009
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Re: How important is Matha Tekking

Responding to original Post, here are some of the thoughts:

Even if one is unable to extend onself to take Babaji in embrace, one should do it;

Even if one is not able to snap off ego boundaries , one should do it;

Even if one does not like it, one should do it,


His grace comes to us through Baba ji through our 'unconscious' wisdom-self or 'conscious' self. Submission of self ensures its receipt. Let one become a part that smoothens the flow of this Grace that one may always reject afterward but Let that one should become so that divine purpose be achieved.

So do it so that there is no Hindrance in the Divine flow of Grace. What and why others do be not thy concern.Let it be so if it is so.

I am reminded of a line of Japu ji Sahib...


Lakh sianapa..hovey ta ek na chalay naal
Kiv sachiara hoveea kiv kurre Tute paal.

plus
While in Rome do as the Romans do..
And
Some keertanayes sing and recite the following before taking up the shabad.
Dandaut Vandan Anik Baar Sarab Kala Samrath;
Dolan te Rakhu Prabhu Nanak de kar hath....
 
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Luckysingh

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It's showing respect, if you cannot do that then you obviously don't care.
Care, about what ?

Just joking!!!peacesignkauricecreammunda

Actually it's a good point about the 'care'. As I'm sure that there are many that just do it not because they particularly feel like it. But because they 'care' about what others will think.
Just because others may sigh, comment or be offended if they see someone eliminating the matha tek, they then feel obliged to do it all because of what others 'care' or feel.
This is 'false' and all for 'show',

This is similar to what I was saying about circulating or going around the Granth Sahib after matha tek. Do they really mean it, or do they really feel that they are offering their head ?

As I said, this is what it means to me, not wether you are amritdhari or not, but if you are prepared to offer your head. I personally feel that this honour of going around means exactly that to me, it's not official or anything but my personal opinion.
A little like saying 'chakkar varna granth davaalay like sir varn nu tyar, guru laye'

Is there anyone on here who regularly does this as an extension of their 'matha tek' ?- If so, why do you really do it ?

Waheguru
 

Harry Haller

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The question is not whether to Matha Tek or not, that would be stupid question.....

The question is how important is it in relation to reading, absorbing and living the SGGS.

As I have said earlier, Matha Tekking is like keeping hair, it is an outward physical expression of love and connection with Creator and Guruji.However, like hair, some may concentrate on the physical aspects more than the inner, it is easier to keep hair and Matha Tek, than it is to live by Bani. It is easier to wear a doctors white jacket than it is to spend years at medical school, hope that clarifies
 

Harry Haller

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It's showing respect, if you cannot do that then you obviously don't care.
I think there is a tendency to focus on the respect/ritual part more than the learning part, but then, Hinduism is more about ceremony and ritual than Sikhism so your comment is understandable
 
Jul 18, 2007
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Great discussion.

Personally I feel its more important to understand/read/vichaar Gurbani. The relationship we have with Guru ji is personal and develops over time depending on our own journeys.

I see many different types of matha tekh's but inevitably everyone has their own way of showing respect for our Guru which no one can really restrict unless it's so strange it causes problems!

A significant influence on Sikh's is the "guilt" factor. As another member mentioned this before about feeling guilty for not sitting etc etc. Sikhs have fallen prey to the guilt that it prohibits them from understanding the faith and further development. Everyone is very knowledgeable about these ritualistic do's and don't's when this effort should be used to further their knowledge of Gurbani and lessons it teaches us to live in practice.
 
Oct 21, 2009
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The question is not whether to Matha Tek or not, that would be stupid question.....

The question is how important is it in relation to reading, absorbing and living the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji.
Harry ji,

An intelligent question by intelligent people!

I am your first class fan for reasons and one of those is that you express your self in a crystal clear manner. You must have invested a lot of time in building your vocabulary and I must congratulate you for this fine effort. What may take pages for me to state that is required to be expressed is stated eloquently by you in just a small paragraphs. I have stopped moaning about my poor English as there is no short cuts to improve on language skills. Till then I shall have the company of your excellent posts.

Friend, you have put me in dilemma to suggest as to which is better-matha tekking vis a vis gurbani practice and living the same. Let us first make a check as to why we do Bani practice. IMHO it is to decipher the message of Guru Sahibaan and then understand it and then execute it in life for our spiritual growth.

By doing Bani we can learn everything that is contained in Nit Nems as well barring few Banis Like Jaap sahib etc., But in essence the knowledge that is contained in Granth sahib is available to one who reads the Granth that is very well documented and the meanings of various metaphors can readily be cross referenced as many translations are available.

We all seek grace of God by repeating small shabads, doing Nitnems, listening to katha and keertan in Local Gurudwaras as and when the discourse is so organized. In essence we do almost all the things at different points of time. The time spent on each activity may be allocated by the aspirant as per his/her convenience.

All of us must draw some time table to divide our time in these activities. A lazy person like me who visits Gurudwara only once or twice a month is not benefited of presence of sangat as a regular visitor is blessed with as GurBani gives due weightage to doing simran and Ardas in sangat. It is also stated that Gur Sahibs would Give Naam in sangat or through sangat. [I stand corrected where I have erred] A visit to Gurudwara will automatically lead me to pay my utmost respect to Gur sahibs by bowing my self or simply stated indulging in Matha tekking. It is inevitable for me. It comes automatically and no extra effort is required.. People generally do not get involved as to what is being done by others as I am concerned with my spiritual growth and mental evolution to the extent it is possible. If Mr. X spends more time in Bani and less time in matha- tekking or visiting Gurudwara , it should be his/her out look. I need not comment upon this. All that is believed is that a rational mix of all the ingredients, stated above, is to be adhered to. Yes, some may like to devote more time on Simran than Bani. It is , as I believe, should be alright till it furthers individuals growth.

It is not necessary that we get grace when we ask for. 'Budha' asked for it for about two decades.It eluded him all the time and finally he Got it when he did not desire it and He obtained Nirvana.Let us wait for our turns...we keep on receiving it in small packets..

Kindly keep on forgiving me as younger brother as my style of writing is crude and raw. I even do not know as to how to post in a disciplined manner. Wishing you all the Luck in this Journey of Life


My other friends should also send their responses.

Regards
 
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Harry Haller

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Taranjeetji,

Although english is my first language, and I thank you for your kind compliments, I would give anything to be able to fluently read punjabi as well as you do, given that our life revolves around information written in punjabi, I feel you are in a better place and better suited to glean the information from the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji than I am, so out of the two of us, you are the luckier one mundahug

I do not think it is about what is better, I suppose I am having a moan about empty practices, about Matha Tekking, doing path, growing hair, in fact all of the things that a true sikh loves to do, but that are done for the sake of doing only, empty rituals.

I have to confess that although I consider myself a Sikh of only a year, I am only on the lowest rung of the ladder, I am still attempting to practice Mool Mantra on a daily basis, and have got no further than that, although I feel that this encapsulates the spirit and essence of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji.

I find that the grace and hukam of God is a lot about my interaction with other people, it is a code of conduct for living, helping, being helped, for not judging (my biggest failing), accepting, and acting in a way that does not provoke anger or conflict, although as a last resort, one must be prepared to fight, and fight hard.

I wish I had your love, your passion, adoration for the beauty of Bani, but here is where my lack of language skills let me down, I am not prepared to accept anothers english translation, so I have to make do with my own fumbled ones, and my life experience to get the essence, as I said, out of the two of us, I think you have the better deal
 

Luckysingh

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Harry ji, I understand how it is to not be able to read and understand punjabi text.
It's never too late to learn, believe me.
I am like you, born and raised british with all things english. Infact, I was one of the very few that was already a generation ahead in the 70's as my father was even born there in UK back in 50.

I have somehow managed to learn how to read punjabi. This has all been self taught although as a youngster I did go to punjabi school but as you know none of us really learnt anything useful in those times.

It's still tough at times, but I keep trying.
I actually learnt a lot of my gurmukhi from Japji sahib!!!
You see, at first I would listen to it repeatedly, listen,listen and listen. When listening, I actually paid a great deal of attention to the words and pronunciation. Then eventually, I became very familiar with it, say in about a year.

Then I started to read it from the gutka and it became alot easier, as I would be familiar with a lot of words. All this helped me learn to read punjabi and gurmukhi. With only knowledge of simple alphabet and kiddie vocab!!!

I am still learniing, and enjoy doing the sukhmuni sahib translations line for line and word for word. I do still get a blank when I see huge pieces of text to read in punjabi but it is best done word for word.

If you keep at it, it will become easier. Practice,practice,practice...
Although I am able to read it, sometimes a little slow, I can't write it!!
I wouldn't know where to put Prakash ji's siharis and biharis when it came to it.

But, I find it''s the reading that is easier and more of what I need. I have never come across a moment where I desperately need to be able to write it.

This is just my own method of how I came to learn to read it. When I tell others, especially ones that read and write punjabi very well, they are always shocked that I have sussed the language in this backward way!!

Believe me, it's not rocket science or difficult but involves patience and time.
You do the mool mantar, I would say try memorising a couple of pauris a time. When you know them a lot better, then start trying to read them.
It does sound a little backward, because I learnt the words 1st, then applied them to the text to understand the text, BUT it has worked for the little that I do know.

I do wish though that the small punjabi school classes we had as 'fun' and 'messing about' were better taught and a little more serious. I mean nearly all the muslim kids there learn the arabic and koran from a young age. The punjabi needs to be taught with better methods.

Keep trying, don't give up, it's not as hard as you think.
 

Harry Haller

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Luckyji

thank you brother for your kind words, I will certainly try your method!, I can read, and write, but I cannot seem to get the essence of the words, my mother, when she reads Bani, cries sometimes with the emotion, and I just cannot seem to feel it, same with shabads, the genuine love that sometimes you can feel when reading your posts, or others, evades me,

I am not in any way concerned about this, Hukam is Hukam, true love takes time, understanding, patience, and faith. I have always been wary of the type that gets down on his knees to exclaim, 'yes, I have found God, its beautiful, I am saved', after such a beautiful moment, surely its all downhill from there, because you are putting your faith in the moment, and at that time, at that moment, you feel it, some days, like today, I feel a deep connection, and it makes me content, I feel sublime, above things that would normally bother me, able to handle any situation, its my foundation, maybe one day I will experience the bliss of crying while reading Bani, I do not know, it does not seem important, what seems more important is behaving, thinking and acting like a Sikh to the best of my ability and in line with what Bani I know, Mool Mantra.

Thank you for your encouraging post, I will never give up, it just might take a bit of time, but you know, firm foundations and all that :)
 

Luckysingh

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Re: How important is Matha Tekking

Majority of the Sikhs have obliterated the thin line between showing respect to Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji and idol-worship.
Do you mean that majority think of it is a ritual like idol worship. So, if you don't do you won't get heard ?
Do some really think like that ?
 
Oct 11, 2006
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Re: How important is Matha Tekking

Do you mean that majority think of it is a ritual like idol worship. So, if you don't do you won't get heard ?
Do some really think like that ?
I firmly believe that majority Sikhs have become idol worshipers. Taking ritual baths in sarovers, drinking its water to cure diseases, washing gurdwaras with milk and Godavari waters, as for example at Sri Hazur Sahib, the elaborate ceremony of Parkaash and Sakhashan at Harmander Sahib and there are many other rituals that smack of idol worship.
This all goes against the very basics of teachings of our great Guru, Guru Nanak Dev ji.
 

Luckysingh

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Thank you for the reply.
We don't get too much exposure over here to some things you mention.
I know, those things sound a little crazy and far fetched.
If only they just trace and look back at the very beginning of sikhism, at the simple teachings of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, they should see all the crazyness that they are committing to!!!

It's funny because I was physically unable to bend down for some time due to a very broken back. I asked a respected elder to take me to the gurdwara, he said that I can't go because I'm unable to matha tek!
When I asked if he was serious, he said that he would have to ask someone at the gurdwara and find out!!!
Anyway, I went and didn't wait for his reply at all, ...that's crazy, I thought and clearly knew that although he was much elder, he was wrong and misinformed.
 

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