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How Large Is The Tent That Is The Sikh Congression?

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by Aman Singh, Jul 23, 2009.

  1. Aman Singh

    Aman Singh
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    Admin SPNer

    Jun 1, 2004
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    by Jodha (TheLangarHall.com)

    Beyond brown or white Sikhs, beyond various caste Sikhs, when and how do we come together as Sikhs? Is the ‘jahaaz’ that is Guru Nanak’s Naam large enough to carry us all, or with a narrow set of doxies and praxis do we restrict those that can enter.

    Despite the various attacks on the Singh Sabha movement for only promoting Khalsa hegemony and other spurious slanders by neo-Sanatans, post-colonialists (I am reminded of a professor that once told me that he would only become a post-colonialist, when colonialism ends) attempting to form neo-Brahman ‘intelligentsias’, those that believe they ‘own’ the Sikh identity, some Hindu chauvinist groups, and various beatniks, the movement was in fact very broad-minded and fought to enlarge the tent that is the Sikh Qaum.

    They understood the difference between public and private aspects. In private, people may have their own practices, beliefs, etc. and while the Singh Sabha sought to bring these more in line with the practices and principles of Gurbani, they did allow some diversity in private. In public, we come together and stand by the Panthic rehat maryada.
    For many years the Ravidasia, occupied such a place. They had distinct practices in their own places of congregation, but they were part of the larger Sikh Qaum. That was until now.

    For some groups:
    Now, followers of Bhagat Ravidass, who call themselves Ravidassias, are shifting out the Guru Granth Sahib from their shrines, thus making a permanent departure from the world’s fifth largest and youngest religion. In shrine after shrine, the Ravidassia sect authorities are either shifting the scriptures out or are telling the local Sikhs to take away the holy volume.[link]
    While I am sure some groups will ‘hail’ the decision, it really is tragic. Where it has always been the Guru Granth Sahib that unites the Sikh Qaum, the actions of some abhorrent individuals in Vienna has led some in the community to a rift with the great Guru. The repercussions will be felt in the future.

    Caste continues to divide our community and without real soul-searching as occurred during the Singh Sabha Movement, we will be doomed as a community. Friends that attend the Ravidas Sabha in Pittsburgh, CA have told me on numerous occasions that members of the sangat from El Sobrante Gurdwara have vandalized various properties. While there may be differences in practices and even some beliefs, Sikhs should engage with one another as brothers and sisters to discuss points of commonalities, instead of willing to commit violence against one another on small points of difference.

    I am sure many will take issue with my writing, but this is an attempt by 1 Sikh to reflect on the events occurring about him and come to turns with a Qaum that has members only to eager to begin dissolving it. I have hope that the youth can make a stand. However, it requires all of us to move beyond words and actually commit to it.
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  3. Kuls1980

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    Jan 26, 2009
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    It is the fault of Singh Sabha, the reason why this is happening. Singh Sabha, have given a boxed version of a Sikh, as an individual you cannot think outside the box. If an individual does stand against Singh Sabha way of thought, they are labeled as RSS or neo-sanathan.
    As I have mentioned in my previous posts on this subject, this will continue unless our attitudes change. In my personal opinion, we have gone to far as a religion to return back, we have given Singh Sabha movement too much time and have praised them for their faults.

    Guru Fethay
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