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Atheism Is Atheism The Ultimate Sikhi?

findingmyway

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Randip Ji

I confess to being dissapointed, I was much impressed by your posting about Ek Onkar, and the lack of heaven and hell in sikhism, however although this is your view, others seem not to share it. I have spent some time reading the post regarding heaven and hell, and although I have the hugest respect for all who contributed, I could not help but shake off the feeling that , in sikhism, everything is geared towards conquering the five thieves, which will then enable eternity merged with the almighty, well that sounds a bit like heaven to me.
Heaven and hell are states of mind. When you are in tune to the truth then life is much easier to deal with. It gives you the strength to deal with the disappointments and difficulties rather than challenging them. We learn to accept the world as it is. By tackling the 5 thieves, your seva is more likely to be completely selfless and done with the receiver in mind rather than doing what is best for yourself, even when it is tough to do the right thing.
 
Nov 24, 2004
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Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!!
Harry Haller, you have come out with an excellent point and have come to realise the truth.
There is something called past Karma.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one does deeds in this life.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one follows a path where one meets the True Guru.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one does either Sewa or one does pure meditation upon Naam -reciting Gods’ Name.
OR
Depending upon one’s Karma, one does bad deeds in this life and suffer the consequences.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one wanders around the world confused, ridiculed leading a miserable life.
BUT
Depending upon one’s Karma, one’s life takes a turns and one finds the true meaning of life and God.
Harry Haller, I think that moment seems to have come in your life.
Firstly you met a lady who is basically a Sewa Panthi.
Then you come and put up this issue to the readers here and get good input.
Then you feel like going to Harmandir Sahib to sit and listen to Kirtan.
Harry Haller, realise, you are a blessed soul.
When you take your wife there, ask her to sit, shut her eyes and listen to the sound of Kirtan even if she may not understand the words.
Ask her to enjoy the beat of the Tabla, the music from the Harmonium and the blissful singing.
When the right time will come, she will understand.
This is a vast subject and cannot be resolved in a few lines.
The answer lies in bringing your mind and your inner self to listen.
May Waheguru ji show you and your wonderful wife the way.
Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!!
 

Harry Haller

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Jan 31, 2011
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Heaven and hell are states of mind. When you are in tune to the truth then life is much easier to deal with. It gives you the strength to deal with the disappointments and difficulties rather than challenging them. We learn to accept the world as it is. By tackling the 5 thieves, your seva is more likely to be completely selfless and done with the receiver in mind rather than doing what is best for yourself, even when it is tough to do the right thing.
veerji, i accept completely your posting, what i would like someone to tell me is what happens when I die, what are my options, reincarnation? according to a post by Giani Jarnail Singh, there is no reincarnation, this is the only life we get and then we die, and then what?

Also I would argue the last line, I never do sewa with myself in mind, I see sewa as something I just have to do, a responsibility if you like, My wife has her heart in it, and she does it solely for the receiver, I on the other hand feel compelled to do it, but I still feel whatever reasons there are for doing sewa, as long as sewa gets done, that is a good start. However , and forgive me for any offence, but surely the sikh way is to do sewa for god, ie, to see god in the receiver.

So if anyone would kindly explain to me what to expect when i die I would be most happy
icecreammunda
 

Harry Haller

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Jan 31, 2011
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Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!!
Harry Haller, you have come out with an excellent point and have come to realise the truth.
There is something called past Karma.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one does deeds in this life.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one follows a path where one meets the True Guru.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one does either Sewa or one does pure meditation upon Naam -reciting Gods’ Name.
OR
Depending upon one’s Karma, one does bad deeds in this life and suffer the consequences.
Depending upon one’s Karma, one wanders around the world confused, ridiculed leading a miserable life.
BUT
Depending upon one’s Karma, one’s life takes a turns and one finds the true meaning of life and God.
Harry Haller, I think that moment seems to have come in your life.
Firstly you met a lady who is basically a Sewa Panthi.
Then you come and put up this issue to the readers here and get good input.
Then you feel like going to Harmandir Sahib to sit and listen to Kirtan.
Harry Haller, realise, you are a blessed soul.
When you take your wife there, ask her to sit, shut her eyes and listen to the sound of Kirtan even if she may not understand the words.
Ask her to enjoy the beat of the Tabla, the music from the Harmonium and the blissful singing.
When the right time will come, she will understand.
This is a vast subject and cannot be resolved in a few lines.
The answer lies in bringing your mind and your inner self to listen.
May Waheguru ji show you and your wonderful wife the way.
Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!!
Many thanks for a most kind post, I confess to always enjoying a good kirtan in my youth, especially the tablas, and your correct, it is enchanting and pleasurable even if you do not understand the words!

However you also speak of past karma, I would take it that the subject of reincarnation is possibly open to interpretation?
 

Navdeep88

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Dec 23, 2009
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Harry ji,

Just a curious note about how people identify themselves... you mention that once you cut your hair you identified yourself as an athiest. you went from being a sikh to an athiest, and that revolved around what you physically represented.

I think there is quite a large distance (both in time and understanding) between being a sikh and an athiest, and physical appearance should not be the biggest indication of where you are.

It is quite possible to have a gursikh appearance, and still be on a different part of the journey than the gursikh sitting next to you. Likewise, it is very possible for two people who do not keep their hair, to either be internally working their way to being a better Sikh or being a staunch athiest.

What is happening internally seems to be a far better indication of where someone truly is on the journey to or away from God. From what you describe of your wife, her compassionate and giving heart, I dont think her actions (or her intent) reject God. She doesnt seem like an athiest. Just because a person doesnt adher to a prescribed path towards God by a particular religion doesn't really make them an athiest.
 

preetsingh13

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Mar 11, 2011
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veerji, i accept completely your posting, what i would like someone to tell me is what happens when I die, what are my options, reincarnation? according to a post by Giani Jarnail Singh, there is no reincarnation, this is the only life we get and then we die, and then what?

Also I would argue the last line, I never do sewa with myself in mind, I see sewa as something I just have to do, a responsibility if you like, My wife has her heart in it, and she does it solely for the receiver, I on the other hand feel compelled to do it, but I still feel whatever reasons there are for doing sewa, as long as sewa gets done, that is a good start. However , and forgive me for any offence, but surely the sikh way is to do sewa for god, ie, to see god in the receiver.

So if anyone would kindly explain to me what to expect when i die I would be most happy
icecreammunda
Hi Harry

Firstly the title of your thread isn't very apt because in no way, shape, or form does Sikhi resemble atheism. Just thought I'd clear that up.

In regards to what happens when you die, I can tell you from my point of view, if you're an athiest you don't believe in God right? From the athiests I know they think religion is all rubbish. Fair enough, it's theirs and your life. So therefore by default athiests believe that nothing happens when you die, that's it, life is over, nothing happens to the soul. Am I right in thinking this is way you think?

You have probably asked your parents this question. As a Sikh however we believe (well my belief at least) the aim of life is to merge with Waheguru. We want our soul to merge with the almighty. Depending on what your good deeds and bad deeds are like you will either move away from God or move closer to God. I believe that we are reborn if our souls haven't merged with Waheguru and depending on good and bad deeds God will give us a suitable life.

In regards to Seva, if you do Seva beacuse you think it's a chore and you 'have' to do it, then there is really no point in doing it. You need to have God in mind and you need to have the sangat in mind. You want to do the Seva to please God and the sangat wherever it may be (Gurdwara, Akhand/Sampat Paath at someones house, etc...). I may be coming across a rude but what do you hope to accomplish doing Seva if you don't believe in God? A few of my friends from school who I grew up with were bought up like you in Sikhi family but now don't believe in Sikhi or God, they don't bother turning up to the Gurdwara anymore, which is fair enough.

I hope I wasn't coming across too rude, I am just trying to get an understanding into your thinking.

Regards

Preet
 

Randip Singh

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May 25, 2005
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Randip Ji

I confess to being dissapointed, I was much impressed by your posting about Ek Onkar, and the lack of heaven and hell in sikhism, however although this is your view, others seem not to share it. I have spent some time reading the post regarding heaven and hell, and although I have the hugest respect for all who contributed, I could not help but shake off the feeling that , in sikhism, everything is geared towards conquering the five thieves, which will then enable eternity merged with the almighty, well that sounds a bit like heaven to me.
Well the metaphor for Heaven and Hell is used in the Sikh texts.

Sikhs however state if you conquer the 5 thieves you are in Heaven, here and now. You are calm, at peace.

Those that dwell in the 5 thieves live in Hell.

It does not mean Sikhism are saying they actually exist.

The ultimate goal for a Sikh is to be one with Onkar, and you can achieve it here and now by conquering the 5 thieves. Not in an after life or heaven or some other state.
 

shearwater

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Apr 4, 2008
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Someone has made the argument that belief in God (theism) fulfills the requirement that gives us the motivation to perform good deeds by offering a way to achieve the good will . . . which means that people whose good will is not won over will not do those good deeds you speak of without belief in god or an ultimate reality that is transcendent beyond our finite minds to understand. America was founded on the Judeo-Christian ethic which posits that there is a hell to shun and a heaven to gain by being in conformance to God's will. This god-fearing ethic motivated just about everything in our society from its founding. I can give you an example from my experience of a sikh who was a business man who I performed a service for. I quoted what price I was willing to perform the service for but found that when he made out the check, it was 10 dollars short of the agreed amount. My thesis is that if he believed in a transcendent reality to which he was ultimately responsible, he would have made out the check for the amount agreed to initially. These kinds of disparities highlight the notion that people may say they believe in the ultimate transcendent reality, but if their behavior doesn't mirror the responsibility to be clear in their morality, their professed religion is in fact atheism. The Christian Bible says that a man's actions must proceed from his beliefs and he may look like a good person while at once is an atheist because he does not practice moral rectitude in all of his acts and by that fact does not believe that he is responsible to the transcendent reality. The kind of atheism spoken of here is the kind that can avoid responsibility while at the same time applaud itself in doing good deeds.
 

hst

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Dec 23, 2010
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Just to add a few thoughts. Much of what is raised by Harry seems culturally shaded - I have heard before and can empathise with the arguments made but they make assumptions which just are not real to Sikhism e.g., in using the phrase “no wish to be saved” – my understanding is that no part of Sikh teachings refer to the “saving of the soul” (more strictly a Judeo-Christian-Islamic concept of “fallen mankind”), etc.

Sikhism, as a way of life has a liberal & practical, philosophical root that addresses matters at the individual/personal level. It is entirely an individual’s choice to believe as they wish - no human has the right to judge faith. The guidance is available in the collected works of the Granth sahib - one needs the patience in hearing/reading and most of all understanding (if necessary try to find good transliterations/translations). This may take time but even simply understanding the meaning of Japji sahib is profound.

Sikhism is not in anyway atheism. The belief in a supreme entity is enshrined. However, much of what Harry’s wife does is a shared ideology of human caring. She does not need to believe anything she doesn’t want to! This where, the concept of “the truth is high, but higher still is truthful living” takes a life of its own.

As for death, to paraphrase, “whatever will be, will be; the future’s not ours to see….”. Does it matter? Not really. The practicality of Guru Nanak’s Sikhism was to mould harmony out of the brutalisation of Punjabi society at the time. The good done by any person of any faith or none, nurtures and benefits life and allows it to last longer. An atheist may consider that to be an act of self interest and a believer a step to Nirvana.

At the practical level quotes on religion from the Granth Sahib that formidable and inspiring are:
'Sarb Dharam Mehn Sreisht Dharam
Har Ko Nam Jap, Nirmal Karam'
Translation: The best of all Religions is the yearning for the divine and purity of deeds.

‘karam karat hovai nihkaram,
tis baisno kaa nirmal Dharam’
Translation: Performing good deeds, not seeking rewards in return, has to be the (vaishnavite) benchmark to judge purity of religion

‘karam Dharam sabh banDhnaa paap punn san-banDh’
Translation: Rituals and religions are all just entanglements; bad and good are bound up with them
 

Ambarsaria

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Dec 21, 2010
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preetsingh13 ji some comments from excerpted content in your post,
Firstly the title of your thread isn't very apt because in no way, shape, or form does Sikhi resemble atheism.
    • The thought of Atheism is quite common amongst most people. It comes to even Sikhs during extreme hardship or difficult times. Loss of a child, major disease, etc.
      • The thought is like, "Where is God and what have I done wrong to go through what I am going through?
    • Hence there is nothing"apt" about the title or question so raised.

  • As a Sikh however we believe (well my belief at least) the aim of life is to merge with Waheguru.
    • "merge with Waheguru" is a more "hocus-pocus" thought. In Sikhism "Waheguru" resides in everyone and everything and there is no merging or unmerging possible or needed. Sikhism's fundamental tenet is bring forward this realization and assisting in its understanding. When the understanding of one creation/creator/God is realized, living with that understanding and in consonance with creation is Sikhism.

  • We want our soul to merge with the almighty.
    • You never leave the almighty so don't worry about merging.
  • Depending on what your good deeds and bad deeds are like you will either move away from God or move closer to God.
    • You only lack understanding of creation/creator/God. Your Good or bad deeds either support or disrupt your existence and living in consonance with creation.
  • I believe that we are reborn if our souls haven't merged with Waheguru and depending on good and bad deeds God will give us a suitable life.
    • "we are reborn", sorry you are not reborn and there is no concept or place for incarnation or re-incarnation is Sikhism. Good and bad deeds aside!

  • In regards to Seva, if you do Seva beacuse you think it's a chore and you 'have' to do it, then there is really no point in doing it.
    • Unless you restrict the concept of seva, even if you think it is a chore, there is a point to do it.
      • For example if you go to Gurdwara and avail yourself of langar, occasionally helping out either as seva or otherwise has functional benefit to keep the institution of langar going. Many people treat it as though once they drop a dollar or a pound that they have now earned the right to go to Guru's buffet.
  • You want to do the Seva to please God and the sangat wherever it may be (Gurdwara, Akhand/Sampat Paath at someones house, etc...).
    • You do seva to please self and the God within. It is an unencumbered act of great value to oneself and also of benefit to one receiving the outcomes of seva.
      • There is no God outside that can be focus of seva. That will quickly take you to Hinduism and other faiths with extensions to murti (statues), stones, sun and the moon, monkeys, elephants, amongst a hoard of others.
        • Fundamentally against what our Gurus so tenaciously worked on to get rid of.
      • If you additionally make others happy (sangat, etc.) that is icing on the cake and creates good vibes.
I wanted to be direct so please forgive me if it appears rude.

Sat Sri Akal.
 

preetsingh13

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Mar 11, 2011
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preetsingh13 ji some comments from excerpted content in your post,

I wanted to be direct so please forgive me if it appears rude.

Sat Sri Akal.
Dear Ambarsaria

You're not coming across rude, rather the contrary I like direct. Don't like people faffing around.

Anyhow I'll reply to your post in depth tomorrow as I'm going to sleep now. I just wanted to say that you pretty much have my post wrong and
I disagree with some of your comments.

Regards

Preet
 

Navdeep88

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Dec 23, 2009
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Ambarsaria Ji,

With all due respect, I think you have been unfairly bashed preetsingh13 ji's post.

The issue I have is: in one instant you mention that in times of hardships a sikh may have athiest tendencies, yet you deny the concept of merging one's soul with waheguru. Sikhism IS a personal JOURNEY and merging, becoming closer seems to be the goal. If you never leave the almighty, then why is there pain and suffering, when our faith is low? One has to make effort, invest time in understanding and as that happens we do (I believe) move towards Waheguru. Or alternatively, if you choose, you can always move away as well.
 

Ambarsaria

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Ambarsaria Ji,

With all due respect, I think you have been unfairly bashed preetsingh13 ji's post.

The issue I have is: in one instant you mention that in times of hardships a sikh may have athiest tendencies, yet you deny the concept of merging one's soul with waheguru. Sikhism IS a personal JOURNEY and merging, becoming closer seems to be the goal. If you never leave the almighty, then why is there pain and suffering, when our faith is low? One has to make effort, invest time in understanding and as that happens we do (I believe) move towards Waheguru. Or alternatively, if you choose, you can always move away as well.
Navdeep88 ji our fellow spner preetsingh13 has promised to reply so I will hold on till his reply. I will be happy to correct my comments as I am here to learn too.

Going forward to your post, if you never had a tinge of "God, why me? Where are you God?; etc." in your life you are more blessed than I. Simply questioning the existence of God due to lack of understanding or otherwise, on occasion, perhaps should not be classified as bordering on Atheism or atheistic tendency. I don't think I stated it so in my post. I hope this write-up clarifies.

All this merging with jyot business, good and bad deeds leading to one of the 84,000 iterations of life, pleasing God in doing what you do is not my take from Gurbani. Gurbani is very upfront and direct and tells you to understand yourself and the creation around and live in light of such thereof. That is finding God.

Sat Sri Akal.
 

Navdeep88

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Dec 23, 2009
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All this merging with jyot business, good and bad deeds leading to one of the 84,000 iterations of life, pleasing God in doing what you do is not my take from Gurbani. Ambarsaria Ji, I've never thought about the re-incarnation ideas too seriously simply because that has nothing to do with the motivation to do good deeds. Why worry about those things? If He brought us here, took care of us while we were children, in our most vulnerable times, gave us love from others and the capacity to love others, I cant think of anything more that I would need. However, I do believe either your moving closer to God, staying still, or moving away. Intuitively, I think there is something that guides you to do what pleases God, and if you dont follow it, you dont feel good. Its not blindly doing what is told or out of fear of being punished, but doing it with courage, love and heart. And those efforts are rewarded by growth and understanding. Just my take.

Gurbani is very upfront and direct and tells you to understand yourself and the creation around and live in light of such thereof. I agree. That is finding God.

Sat Sri Akal.
.
 
Jan 15, 2011
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Discussion totally is changed. Mr Haller your question is atheism is ultimate sikhi.
My answer is no but what you have heard about sikhi is not sikhi. My understanding from your story is that you are taking means of sikhi from our traditional Dera Wales interpretation. i advise you that you need to read yourself our Gurbani. There is no place of rituals and worships in our Gurbani. But in real life now we see advocates of rituals and worships in sikhoism. these advocates make their living from these ritualism and worshipism. Whatever you have seen or heard or experienced at your home or in your environment that is not sikhi. That is reason that you mixing up both. In Sikhism there are 5 parameters of life that a sikh has to follow in life. These are SAAT ( high moral character), SANTOKH ( contentment), DAYA ( compasion), DHARAM ( faith and responsibilty) and VICHAR ( high thinking or analytical knoledge.More over one has to do nam simerorn which reminds hin daily morning evening about all above five parameters. The first and most pre requesit of Sikhi is to believe in His existence.
What you are feeling in your wife is compassion which is a part of sikhism but not only the part.
Again I advise you to read our Gurbani then you will realise the difference. Donot make decision on basis of others interpretation. The people who interpretted previously are contaminated soles because they have been raised and brought up in Vedantic atmosphere which is nothing but teaches you ritulisms and worshipism or meditaitonism or yogism which had repelled you away from sikhism. In real sense Sikhism has nothing to do with these things.
 

Rupinder.Singh

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Mar 11, 2009
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Dear Harry Ji


Nice post and worth a thought. I have not gone through the other responses to your post yet but i would like to go thourgh them and learn more as soon as i get some time.

Meanwhile as Your original post is very thought provoking and I wanted to capture before i loose them So I will try to express some thoughts on your post.

To start with I am of the opinion that religion has diffrent meaning for different people. As everyone has different set of eyes, so everyone sees it differently. Majority of the people take religion as a big group they belong to. As the group with more members is considered strongest so most of the people tend to increse the number of members in thier particular type of group.

When we talk in common language, most of us spend their life trying to prove my religion is better than yours in this way or that. In actual they are trying to prove my group is better than yours.


Sikhism, Hinduism, Islam, Christanity they are all groups which are created under the name of religion. So is Athism which is created on the concept of No-GOD.

Where as actual Religion in itself is about learning compassion, love, reightous earning, respect, faithfulness, helping the needy, being truthfull in a nutshell a rightous way of life.


We have different religions all over the globe not because they are diffrent but because they were started in geographically apart areas, and thus had diffrent names just like geographically apart areas have diffrent languages.

With the expansion of human race they started to come across each other, and thus started the hinderence. By nature, Human being is quite reluctant to change its age old ways so when diffrent relgions intermixed they started feeling the fear of change and thus the hatred among diffrent relgions.


Now I dont know about other religions, But sikhism is not just meant for a particular set of geographically located people. It addresses Human race as a whole. It does not ask anyone to convert. Sikh Gurus addresed Mulla (Muslim Priest) how to be a true Mulla, They addressed Hindu Pandit, telling him how to be a true Pandit. They never said if you are mulla you wont be librated, nor they ever said if you are hindu Pandit you will go to hell.


Gurus gave us the term Sikh, Sikh means a learner not just a person belonging to a certain group. Everyone can be a Sikh ie. a learner no matter what religion/group they practice/follow.


On those lines, Sikhism differs from Atheism in terms its belief in One Universal formless creator, who is independent of time, is fearless,independent of birth and death, and is by itself only.

Regarding the recitation of Banis. This is something that has much deeper meaning than what we normally understand it is. On the broader scale it is promoted as a practice that every gursikh has to undertake every morning and in the evening. Now when we practice any ritual we dont tend to go into its deep meanings and the logic behind those rituals. Guru's started it as a To-do list for the day before start of every day. So that we can remember what Guru has guided us to practice. So that we follow that path in our daily chores. So that at the end of the day we go through it again. So that we can keep an eye on how we are progressing on our path to rightous living.

But these days, most of us if not all, unknowingly treat it as a practice that has to be done every monring/evening. No one takes it as a to do list for the day/life. They just finish it off in 20-40 minutes and go off to other things. Most wont even remember what they read . Most wont even try to understand. For them finishing off the practice is the only requirement to be a sikh. Which i dont think was the vision of our Gurus.

Regarding some sikhs getting involved in wrong activities like Extra marital affairs, telling lies and drinking etc. I consider it wrong to judge a Phylosophy based on the performance of student studying that phylosophy. So if a person who looks like sikh, is doing something wrong that does not mean Sikh phylosophy is wrong. It just means that, that Sikh does not understand the phylosophy in its true essence. It would be wrong to use those people to justify our alienation away from Gurus Message. Rather we should act like praticing Sikh role models for others coz atleast by Guru's grace we have some understanding of Guru's Message that we can identify a right against wrong.


Moreover, Sikh phylosphy enshrined in Guru Granth Saheb requires self study, dedication and time. It does not propagate from generation to generation. A children born in a sikh family is not sikh unless he/she understands and practices guidelines in Guru granth saheb in his /her life. It is similar to a profession of doctor, Children of doctor needs to practice medicines themselves to be doctor. They can't be doctor just being born in a doctor family.


Today, We have got more people born in sikh family, than the actual Sikhs who learned sikhism through self study and practice. I consider later one to be praticing sikhs.


Guru Granth Saheb includes the writings which are independent of time . Coz truth never decays with time. It includes the writings of the great people before and during Guru Ji's time. These include people from muslim as well as Hindu background. That simply testifies that Guru Granth saheb truly believes that Truth can be told by person of any caste, creed or race. It also testifies that Sikh phylosophy believes in one human race.

Under this light, there is no question if an Athiest is right or a sikh is right or a Muslim is right. Everyone will be judged on the rightness of the act without any consideration of the group to which one belongs to.


Moving on to the concept of Hell/Heaven. In my meager understanding of Bani, It is hell when we are involved in wrong doing, coz at that time we are constantly fearfull of being caught, we tell lies to cover it up, We make foes out of it. our mind is not at rest. What else you describe hell as. On the other hand, If we have done something right, WE are not fearfull of anyone, We dont have to tell any lies, We have nothing to hide, We make more friends and our mind is contantly at rest. This is what heaven is for me according to Guru Granth Saheb. Only a free mind can connect to GOD. Thats why our GURUs told us to earn the rightous living.

In some phylosophies, Hell/heaven are described as something that happens after death, People are threatened to connect to GOD through certain rituals otherwise they will be sent to hell. People perform those rituals as told, thus help someone make money. And they themselves live under the false impression that they have got a seat booked for themselves in heaven.In actuall in thier day to day life they keep on dying everyday from fear, lies, stress and thus living the hell without knowing about it.

People who live truthfull and rightous life are already living in heaven. They wont die daily of fear ,lies and stress. Our Gurus have guided

"Gur Kai Sahbdi Jo marai, fir marai na duji var"

ਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਸਬਦੇ ਜੇ ਮਰੈ ਫਿਰਿ ਮਰੈ ਨ ਦੂਜੀ ਵਾਰ ॥
गुर कै सबदे जे मरै फिरि मरै न दूजी वार ॥
Gur kai sabḏe je marai fir marai na ḏūjī vār.
But when he dies in the Word of the Guru's Shabad, then he does not die, ever again.

http://www.srigranth.org/servlet/gurbani.gurbani?Action=Page&Param=1009&punjabi=t&id=43151#l43151


So there is no point that a true practicing Sikh is selfish yearning for Heavens. Coz a true practicing sikh would already be living in heaven through his day to day life in accrodance with Guru's guidelines. It might be selfish of the people who perform certain baseless rituals trying to secure thier seat in heavens after death but who never bothered to live this life according to Guru's Guidelines ie. rightous way of living.




I wish i can make some sense. Sorry about the long post. PLease feel free to correct me.

Thanks once again for your post.

Keep flowing....

Rupinder Singh
peacesign
 

Harry Haller

Panga Master
SPNer
Jan 31, 2011
5,762
8,156
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Many thanks to all the enlightened people who have shared in this discussion, I would like to make it quite clear though, that I am a fool. At no point would I dream of trying to say that being an atheist is better than being a sikh, however it is better for me in this current time.

Allow me to explain, bankruptcy hit me hard 15 years ago, up until then I had always thought of myself as one of gods favourites, I felt I could walk on water, just so long as I kept up the magical rituals that I had observed everyone else doing, so I drank, slept around, lied, cheated, but I figured as long as I kept my turban and beard, and believed in god, I would be fine. Of course events caught up with me, and in my fall, I lost everything, now when I mean everything, I mean my ego, pride, belief, joy, in short, it felt like I had died. I kept fighting until the last possible moment, at the time, I had also a huge interest in the german author herman hesse, whose writing I found hugely inspirational, one of his books, The Steppenwolf, I found was almost like reading a blueprint to my soul, amongst other concepts was one regarding the suicides. If you know that your death is likely to be by your own hand, it gives you several strengths, not least that life becomes a lucid dream where everything is possible, as there are no consequences, together with my fasle faith in a false god (that god was not waheguru, it was a *******ised version of god i had invented in my head), this meant that I had two options on how to deal with a mess of huge proportions, one, to immerse myself in god (however given that my god validated everything that I had done, this did not seem too great an option, or go with the book. I decided to go with the book, I did not particularly want to be around to clear up the mess, given that there would also be consequences.

To cut a long story short, I failed, and my failure was public, at that time, I suppose I should really had made the effort to try and find 'the true king', but I didnt, I became a husk, a walking zombie, I also realised how everything I believed in was wrong, the desire for power, the big cars, being a player, it all meant nothing, with a heavy heart, and not knowing who god was anymore, but realising that I was a very bad sikh, I cut my hair and shaved my beard, and devoted the next 15 years to trying to make a difference. I called myself an atheist, because I did not believe in god, that is not to say I did not believe in the existance of god, but I rejected any positive effect his presence may have had on me, instead I concentrated on his orders, and there were many, and I hated him for it. As far as I was concerned he did not love me anymore, and the only way back was to do his will without his love or his touching me, so I did, for a year, 2 , 3, 7, 10 years passed. Finally after 15 years, I sensed a shift, a change in something, and in January of this year something made me join this forum.

God did not make me go through this, for some reason I did it to myself, a complete rejection of all things godly other than sewa.

So, please bear in mind dear sangat you are having this debate with a fool, who does not quite know why he feels the way he does, but today,the thought of following the ultimate truth has excited me in a way that I have not felt excited in a long time.
 

Harry Haller

Panga Master
SPNer
Jan 31, 2011
5,762
8,156
50
Rupinderji

I agree with everything you have written, thank you for taking the time to write such a long and informative post. You have, I feel validated my argument very simply with the phrase

So there is no point that a true practicing Sikh is selfish yearning for Heavens. Coz a true practicing sikh would already be living in heaven through his day to day life in accrodance with Guru's guidelines. It might be selfish of the people who perform certain baseless rituals trying to secure thier seat in heavens after death but who never bothered to live this life according to Guru's Guidelines ie. rightous way of living.

also Chamkaurji, yes, you are correct, I have learned more in the last few months reading here than I have in observing the local community, I could have spoken to my parents, but now they have become used to my ways, I did not want to give my mother false hope about my beliefs until I had done my own research, they are modest and good people, and they have suffered because of my take on life. They both cry sometimes when they do path, and it is a very different vision to some people who go through morning path like it is a chore, those that know they have done this are learning, those that feel they have fulfilled this to a complete satisfaction will never learn, they will be husks as dead as i was
 

Harry Haller

Panga Master
SPNer
Jan 31, 2011
5,762
8,156
50
Hi Harry

Firstly the title of your thread isn't very apt because in no way, shape, or form does Sikhi resemble atheism. Just thought I'd clear that up.

In regards to what happens when you die, I can tell you from my point of view, if you're an athiest you don't believe in God right? From the athiests I know they think religion is all rubbish. Fair enough, it's theirs and your life. So therefore by default athiests believe that nothing happens when you die, that's it, life is over, nothing happens to the soul. Am I right in thinking this is way you think?

You have probably asked your parents this question. As a Sikh however we believe (well my belief at least) the aim of life is to merge with Waheguru. We want our soul to merge with the almighty. Depending on what your good deeds and bad deeds are like you will either move away from God or move closer to God. I believe that we are reborn if our souls haven't merged with Waheguru and depending on good and bad deeds God will give us a suitable life.

In regards to Seva, if you do Seva beacuse you think it's a chore and you 'have' to do it, then there is really no point in doing it. You need to have God in mind and you need to have the sangat in mind. You want to do the Seva to please God and the sangat wherever it may be (Gurdwara, Akhand/Sampat Paath at someones house, etc...). I may be coming across a rude but what do you hope to accomplish doing Seva if you don't believe in God? A few of my friends from school who I grew up with were bought up like you in Sikhi family but now don't believe in Sikhi or God, they don't bother turning up to the Gurdwara anymore, which is fair enough.

I hope I wasn't coming across too rude, I am just trying to get an understanding into your thinking.

Regards

Preet
many thanks for your thoughts, I would disagree with the idea that seva that you do not want to do is pointless, at the very least it is not pointless for the person that it is for. I am not at odds with sikhism, I just think if you strip away all the show, whatever you are left with is probably very good and true, doing sewa for the sangat seems egoistic, I have always felt the best sewa should never be spoken of. I did not find your post rude at all, however, please do not feel I am being rude when I reply to your question regarding what I hope to achieve by doing sewa when I do not believe in god, I find the thought of trying to help someone for the sole purpose of self achievement through god wrong
 

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