Pointing One's Feet To The Sggs At The Gurdwara

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by Simranjit, Aug 22, 2018.

  1. IJJSingh

    IJJSingh Writer SPNer

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    Love, respect and our inner thoughts reside in our heart and cannot be seen by others. Society in its yearning for a proof that everybody in a gathering has respect for a solemn event has developed visible proxies for representing inner emotions. Wearing black in a funeral, addressing a judge as “your honor” in a court, and not pointing feet towards somebody you respect are all such examples. These proxies are harmless and do foster harmony and comfort, and therefore should be followed. However, the problem starts when these proxies become the focus and people forget the bigger meaning. From time to time saints jolt us to bring us back on track. Purpose of their actions is not to oppose the ritual or to insult the gathering but to remind people of the greater truth which is usually lost behind these rituals.

    A crowd outside a mosque in Lahore kept beating Bulleh Shah, a Sufi saint, because he wouldn’t stop saying ‘meri jutti thulay rab’ (God is under my shoe). Until a wise man realized what Bulleh Shah was trying to teach and explained to the mob that Bulle Shah is only demonstrating what Quran tells us every day about the all-pervading Allah.

    It’s important to remain vigilant and keep SGGS our guide. Otherwise, it’s very easy to get misled by these rituals. I remember an episode from the biography of Sant Sangat Singh ji Kamalia (Kathriya Santah, Volume 2, p137). Sant ji (1882-1950) was an inspired soul, a revered Sikh scholar, and a tireless preacher. He was one of the 29 Sikhs tasked by the Panth for compiling the common Sikh Rehat Maryada. Sant ji used to organize events to get sangat involved with gurbani as much as possible. One such annual event was the concurrent twenty-five akhand paths (uninterrupted recitation of SGGS), where readers would read in unison. During this event, there would be hardly anybody in the sangat who wouldn’t be assigned some role in recitation, listening, langar or sewa. I have seen these events, later on after Sant ji moved to Patiala after the Indian independence. This event in question was in 1941, and as always there were 25 sarups of SGGS organized in a semi-circle, and some of the sangat used to sit inside the semi-circle and the rest facing the semi-circle. A lot of sangat used to gather for this event, and Sant Balwant Singh ji along with his Jatha was among the visiting sangat this year. Sant Balwant Singh ji didn’t like the setup and complained to Sangat Singh ji that some of the sangat sitting inside the semi-circle are not facing all of the sarups. Balwant Singh Ji felt that it is disrespectful as some in sangat have their shoulder or back towards some of the sarups. Sant Sangat Singh ji smiled and didn’t say anything. At the conclusion of the Akhand Paths, after the Kirtan was over, Sant Sangat Singh started his Katha. Sant Ji said there was a king named Mahmood Gazanvi. He ruled Gazni and invaded India several times. This king had a slave named Ayaz. The king had purchased Ayaz in young age and had raised him. Ayaz grew up to be a very wise young man who was fiercely loyal to the king. The king started depending more and more upon Ayaz’ counsel and made Ayaz’s approval a must before he implemented any decision proposed by his cabinet of ministers. This practice irked the ministers to no end, and in jealousy, they started looking for an opportunity to bring Ayaz down. Ayaz used to sleep on the floor next to the King’s bed. One night when both the King and Ayaz were fast asleep, the prime minister managed to maneuver Ayaz’s feet towards the king and waited outside the room. As soon as the king woke up, the minister rushed into the room and said to the king, “Sire, we are even afraid of your shadow but look at this insolent slave he is lying with his feet towards you”. The king became enraged and called his soldiers to arrest Ayaz. Next day in the court, the ministers further egged the king to give exemplary punishment to Ayaz so that nobody ever dares again to disrespect the king. The king passed the death sentence and ordered that Ayaz be brought in front of him and be executed in public. When Ayaz was brought before the king, the king asked, “Do you have anything to say before your death?” Ayaz said, “Sir if I have your permission, I do have one request”. The king said, “Speak”. Ayaz with his bowed head and folded hands said, “Many years ago when you bought me in the market. Did you buy my head? Or did you buy my hands? Which part of me did you buy?” The king said, “I bought all of you”. Ayaz said, “Did you also buy my feet in this transaction”. “Of course I did”, the king replied. Ayaz said, “Sir, if you own my head, my body, and my feet, then nothing here is mine. If these were my feet, then it would have been an insult for you. Since these are your own feet, how could these offend you?” The king was astonished at hearing his slave’s words and pardoned him immediately. Sant Sangat Singh Ji said, “Since all of the body parts of the sangat are owned by Guru Nanak, Kalgidhar Patshah, and Shri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, then how can there be an insult?” There was complete silence in sangat, tears started rolling down Sant Balwant Singh ji’s eyes, and sobbingly he said, “Bakhsh Lavo, Bakhash Lavo, Bakhash Lavo!”
     
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  2. Kanwaljit.Singh

    Kanwaljit.Singh Writer SPNer

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    it is time i buy one :D

    but this thread reminds us.. respect can't be enforced but earned
     
  3. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller

    Panga Master

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    in our culture? nah, all it takes is a new s class and some hideously garish jewelry
     

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