Living in His Will

 

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

One of the easiest things to say is that we should live in His will but it is one of the hardest things to do. And it is not until we actually live in His will during a difficult period in life, do we realize what it truly means to live in His will. In my life and the life of dear ones, I have seen when living in His will was good, bad and nearly impossible.

I was nineteen years old when over the period of a few months; I found myself unable to walk for more than a few feet without unbearable pain, riddled with random pain in different parts of my body and unable to stay awake more than a few hours. For six months my family thought I was faking it because the doctors couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me. I was miserable and couldn’t figure out why God was doing this to me; what good did God get from my misery? Than six months after all this had begun, the doctors discovered I had imbalance that caused my kidneys to leak. The supplements made the random muscle pain and constant need for sleep go away but I still couldn’t walk. It took them another month to discover that I had a slip disc, which was actually the root of my misery. None of the painkillers were working and the doctors recommended surgery. An impulse trip to India and bath at Harmandir Sahib, my back was cured. Till this day I thank god that I got slip disc and my kidney condition got caught. It was hard to live in His will but when I look back, it was worth it.

A person is not always able to look back and be thankful for what seems like a horrible event in their lives that changed their life for the better. Life was finally looking up for my father, he was working hard as a truck driver to support his family back home and then suddenly one day his partner caused the truck to crash. My father was sleeping in the back when the crash happened and was horribly injured; the partner jumped out and didn’t even get a scratch on him. It was during the ride to the hospital the paramedics discovered my father had diabetes that was completely out of control. Left untreated, it could have caused my father to have severe kidney damage, to go blind and loads of other problems. But this crash got him the help he needed, which he otherwise would have never gotten because he just couldn’t afford it. Not only did this accident helped catch his diabetes but the insurance money helped him start his own business. He is 100 times better off today, than he was before that faithful crash. His back often troubles him and at times the pain gets unbearable but today he can afford to say no to work. The memories of the horrible crash still hurt him, maybe one day this will of God, won’t seem so bad.

But how does one live in His will when no light can be seen at the end of the tunnel of pain. In recent months a family friend had a stroke due to high blood pressure, the stroke has left him unable to talk, recognize his family and without hope of ever returning to normal. The only breadwinner for his family does not even know that since he has been in the hospital, another daughter has been born to him. All day his family cries and prays that a miracle will happen and he will once again recognize them, it has been months but he has not. Sometimes we wonder if he is never going to get better, wouldn’t it have been easier if God had called him to Himself? But then again, if God had done that would his wife stayed back and learned to fend for herself and her family? Would she have kept her daughter, which everyone is so eager to adopt? Maybe or maybe not. But as of now, she is here fighting, praying and learning on how to survive on her own without depending on others, so she can keep things normal for when her husband does wake up. Yes, those of us around her try to help her out as much as we can but it is not the same as having your husband with you that used to do everything for you. Sometimes to the non-believer the will of God is worse than bad, it’s ugly.

No matter how God’s will looks at first glance, for those that believe there is always more to it than that meets the eye. Whether God’s will is good, bad or ugly, there is always some good hidden in it, we just need to believe. Sometimes is pain for small period of time, to help us avoid long time problems. Sometimes its pain in smaller doses to help us bear it in the long run. And occasionally He gives us a big pain to make us so strong that we can not only bear our pain but help others also. He is our father, why would he want to see us in pain? If you can’t see the good in His will, it is because you have yet to turn on the lights. Go to Guru Granth Sahib Ji and ask for help in turning on the minds light because it is only a Guru that can expel the darkness and bring you into the light.

 

Source:http://www.sikhsangat.org/2011/02/living-in-his-will/

| Leave a comment

The World of Change

Change begins at Home

 

Whenever one wants to change the world, they are first told to begin at home and then change the world. I don’t think anyone has heard it more than me. Like many Sikhs I am troubled by the direction our religion is headed. I am troubled by the politics, the caste issues, girl boy ratios, outside influences on practice of Sikhism and etc. One could go on all day listing everything that needs to be changed back to how the Guru Sahiban left it for us. But every time I begin to talk about these issues with family or friend, I am asked what I am doing about it or what I can do about it. At that point typically I have to be quiet because I honestly feel hopeless/helpless about bringing change.

That is till recent times; today I will not be quiet as I plan on bringing change starting from home. In recent times the Sikh turban and articles of faith have made news quite a few times. Sikhs are outraged at how blatantly our Turbans are being disrespected and non-Sikhs for the most part don’t have a clue what the big deal is. Though it must be noted that some Sikhs are also confused about what’s going on and again what the big deal is. My idea is just that; to inform Sikhs, non-Sikhs and the people in a position to make a difference.

On one of the highly celebrated Sikh holiday, Visakhi, the Punjabi class which I attend will hold a town hall style meeting regarding the turban. The hope is that if the guests are invited three months or so prior to the event, they can’t use the schedule conflict excuse to get out of it. The three months also give us enough time to thoroughly research and prepare speeches and presentations that would best represent the interests of Sikhs around the world. Speeches that inform and inspire will be given. All speakers will be local Sikhs, mostly youth with no hidden agendas. All issues will be clear and out in the open, no behind closed door meetings. 

With this attitude of change we hope to achieve an understanding with the local Senators and TSA officials on what the issues are and why there needs to be a change in the treatment of the turban. We hope the youth will be able to gather support from local Sikhs and Non-Sikhs alike as they extend their hand to Senators to work on a plan for change. And outside of immediate people in attendance, we hope this meeting will inspire sangat around America to hold similar meetings with their senators and TSA officials.

Together we need to send the message to the United States and the world that we will not let the turban become the symbol of terrorism.

Our humble request to all sangat reading this article is to provide us feedback, links, information and just about anything they think is important for us to research to make this meeting a success.  We can only bring about a change with the blessings of Waheguru Ji and the support of the sangat. For more one on one conversation to share ideas and thoughts, please feel free to contact me at fromthese5tothose5@hotmail.com.

| 2 Comments

New Year 2011 — Guru Granth Sahib Ji’s Hukam

Every year Sikhs around the global gather at the local Gurudwara Sahibs to welcome the New Year with the true Guru, Guru Granth Sahib Ji. In His presence we beg for His blessings so that we may have a good year. Some of us make promises and bargains so that our wish of a good year may come true. We make resolutions to give up the negatives and embrace the positives but rarely do we keep those resolutions. For 2011 let us not make promises that we often can’t keep, instead let’s ask/beg to have the ability to live in His will. No promises or bargains, just His Hukam; whether it is desired, easily attainable hukam or one that is unbelievably difficult to comprehend.

Typically when we do ardas asking for guidance, in back of our head, we know what our desired hukam from Guru Granth Sahib Ji would be. We silently will Guru Ji to give us that Hukam, which would let us do what our heart desires. And even Guru Granth Sahib Ji listens to his true Gursikhs because He knows what they desire for is not against Sikhi. Such was the case on October 12, 1920 when some newly blessed Gursikhs from the so-called low caste went to Harmandir Sahib to offer an ardas and were turned back. They desired to get the blessings to Guru Granth Sahib Ji but were stopped by the masands that controlled Shri Akal Takhat Sahib Ji at that time. Instead of fighting and creating bloodshed in Guru Ji’s presence both parties agreed to do ardas and take a hukamnama to see if the new Sikhs parsad and ardas would be accepted. The hukumnama clearly said that even the lowest were transformed by the Guru and that Sikhi had no place for caste. The masands then ran away from the Takhat and abandoned their posts. Thus, without any bloodshed under the hukam of Guru Granth Sahib, parsad and ardas were accepted and new management came to place. The desires of true Gursikhs are fulfilled by the true Guru, Guru Granth Sahib Ji.

Occasional a Sikh goes to Guru Granth Sahib Ji in hopes for Hukam to guide them but gets a hukamnama that is unbelievably difficult to comprehend for a person that doesn’t have full faith. But for those that have faith, there is little doubt about carrying out Guru Ji’s Hukam. Such was the faith Bhai Lachhman Singh and all the Sikhs with him that day that they had no fear that the Hukam taken when leaving home hinted that the freedom of Gurdwara Nankana Sahib would come at the price of their lives. Even when they were stopped at the orders of the panth, they marched ahead at the orders of Guru Granth Sahib Ji. That day Mahant Narian Dass caused about 150 Sikhs to receive martyrdom in the cruelest fashion. First Sikhs would be injured to the point they were on their last breaths and couldn’t fight back and then chopped into small pieces to farther torture them. At the price of their lives, Guru Granth Sahib Ji’s Sikhs did exactly as commanded by Guru Ji and freed Gurdwara Nankana Sahib. After the martyrdom of these brave Sikhs the outraged Sikh community insured the Mahant got the death penalty and they regained control of Gurdwara Nankana Sahib. Thus, by following the hukam of the true Guru, Nankana Sahib was freed.

sakanank

Guru Granth Sahib Ji always advises the Sikhs that turn to Him with a clean heart and good will. Today we see lots of bad stuff happening around to us and wonder if there is no God? There is a God and we have a Guru, Guru Granth Sahib Ji, that is always there to listen and guide but we don’t listen. So whose fault is it? God’s or ours? This New Year let’s not make resolutions but instead ask Guru Granth Sahib Ji to give us enough faith that we can always turn to Him. Enough faith to turn to Guru Granth Sahib Ji whenever we are stuck, instead of blaming God for our ill luck afterwards. Enough brains that we at least ask Guru Granth Sahib Ji before we do anything in His name, for the betterment of our community.

May Guru Granth Sahib Ji bless all Sikhs with enough faith to hear, understand and carry out His hukam.

source: http://www.sikhsangat.org/2011/01/new-year-2011-guru-granth-sahib-jis-hukam/

please ask permission before reproducing, thanks.

| Leave a comment

The Trap of Maya

Money is not everything

 

Waheguru Ji works in mysterious ways, one just needs to keep open mind and open eyes to see it. These past few weeks I have been having issues when it came to dealing with money. As an immature young adult, I had been irresponsible using my credit cards and had them taken away by my parents and warned just to use cash. Cash has always been my weak point and I had known that even before I had the cards taken away. So I had asked Waheguru Ji to help me give up my attachment to money. I think it was a three step program; admittance, denial and forgiveness.

I have been trying to go to the Gurudwara daily or as often as I can and it was decided I would empty my pockets of all cash at each visit. Seemed like a simple enough idea, after all I did have all my credit cards still with me. I stopped caring about cash and barely carrying any at that. I became dependent on my cards. I stopped abusing one form of maya and started abusing another. When the bills came in, I was cut off from this form of Maya also. I stopped visiting the Gurudwara as often, not knowingly but sub-consciously. I needed the money, I guess. So during the week I avoided the Gurudwara Sahib but there was no way around Sundays. The last Sunday I was driving to the local Gurudwara Sahib a greedy thought crossed my mind. I said aloud to Waheguru Ji that it’s His fault I am broke, again today I am going to give up my money and now I don’t even have my credit cards. But I will honor my promise and give up all the money I have.

I never got the chance to honor my promise; Waheguru Ji intervened and reminded me of my place. I had complained less than a block from the Gurudwara Sahib and a block later I completely forgotten all about the money. Totally distracted I grabbed my books for Punjabi School and rushed in though I was early and there was no need to rush, just a feeling. It was not until I was already at Guru Granth Sahib Ji’s presence, that I remembered the money. I promised myself that after Punjabi class I will go get the money. All through the Punjabi class guilt consumed me that I shouldn’t have said what I said; I have to honor my promise. But I never got around to bringing the money from the car. The money sat in my car for two weeks, reminding me of my betrayal. For two weeks I tried to find my way to the Gurudwara Sahib to honor my promise. I denied the fact I didn’t want to give the money to Guru Ji in the first place, I denied it was His to do as He wished. I tried to have control over something I had no control over, everything is Waheguru Jis.

Finally today, I gave up the control back to Waheguru Ji. And I realized that the only way to lose the love for maya is to learn that we have no control over any of it, it’s all Waheguru Jis. I spent the money today, all of it, to buy medication for my aunts paining leg. Once you say that you’re giving Waheguru Ji something and you truly believe in Waheguru Ji, He doesn’t let you make that mistake. He puts His Sikhs head and saves them from this world of maya. He teaches us that we can’t give anything to Waheguru Ji; He is the one that gives everything.

The moment a Sikh feels they can give Waheguru Ji anything, forgets how to beg, how to ask Guru ji. They get filled with Ego (hanker) and they can never find a place in the feet of Waheguru Ji. I don’t think I need cash or credit cards anymore because no matter how much I struggle, Waheguru Ji is still in charge. Once we open the eyes of our mind, Waheguru Ji can help us beyond our wildest imagination. Maya is just one thing, Waheguru Ji has the ability to rescue us from all the evils and give us a place at His feet.

 

Source: http://www.sikhsangat.org/2010/12/the-trap-of-maya/

| Leave a comment

Disabling Punjab — NRIs to blame?

We had the money, the resources to enable them instead we worked hard towards disabling them. Once Punjabi’s were known for working hard, living life of dignity and loving their families but that is no longer the case. Today Punjab is riddled with huge unemployment rates, crippling drug problems and the country’s highest girl feticides rate. As much as we like to blame the Indian government for all the issues Punjab is facing, I can’t help but feel we are also responsible. Did we lay the foundation and the Indian Government take advantage of the situation? Are we somehow responsible for the unemployment, drug problems and the loss of love between families?

Did we disable our families from wanting to work by sending them money, with no strings attached? When NRI’s first began earning in other countries, their first concern was sending money home. Originally the money was used to pay off loans occurred over the years and the loans taken out to get out of the country. But once the loans were paid off, NRIs did not shift focus onto fixing up their own living conditions. They kept sending money back home to buy more land, to build a bigger house, to buy a car and etc. The family back home got use to receiving the luxuries without having to earn them. Now the first generation knew the struggle it took to receive those luxuries and was appreciative but the second generation that never had to struggle for anything in life, felt it was their birth right. All of sudden almost all jobs felt unfit for those that were used to getting everything without working. NRIs disabled our youth when it comes to working and caused the beginning of Punjab’s unemployment problems.

If unemployment was not bad enough, it brought a drug problem with it. The youth had no desire to work but had a desire to prove themselves cooler than all their friends. So when they were introduced to drugs, they could afford it using money sent by NRIs but they had no reason not to try them. It became a competition how could find the better drugs, do the better drugs, get the better high between the rich and the spoiled. While the rich competed, the poor looked for outlet for their pain. The pain that comes from knowing that no matter how hard I work, someone will have better stuff then me without even trying. Their pain found the outlet in drugs they could afford and sometimes drugs they couldn’t afford. The addiction got so out of hand, families began cutting their kids off and the youth became desperate. Desperate youth began committing first petty crimes and then major crimes to get their hands on the drugs without which they could no longer imagine their lives.

Families began to fall apart because they did not know how to cope with the wide spread drug epidemic. On one hand their families falling apart on the other NRIs visiting and having to cater to them to keep them happy, so they would keep giving the money that they could no longer operate without. The stress created tremendous amount of tension that began ripping families apart. Everyone knew there were problems but no one said a word. The NRIs could not see how the families back home could be so upset, since they gave them so much; to them the families were just ungrateful. The families back home didn’t know how to tell their NRI family members their true struggles. Struggles that involved spending more than the earned and then getting into debt because they were too dependent on money being sent home by NRIs. About the youth going in the wrong path and people not understanding, blaming them, for everything and still not being able to help their children. All these problems but not being able to talk about it, find a solution because we are all created in this fake perfect world that was made used NRI money. We created the problems that drove our families apart.

And then the Indian government took advantage of the situation, to worsen the condition of Punjab. To break it because it is the home of the Sikhs and the Indian Government has never liked Sikhs. But we are strong people, Punjabis don’t get defeated; we fight. That fight in us, gives us the strength to admit that the NRI’s money caused as much damage as it did good. It gives us the strength to try and fix our mistakes. We can still send money home but we have to make sure it is spent to strength our families, not break them from inside out. The money needs to be spent creating jobs, fighting drugs and saving our daughters. Our time needs to be spent not fighting but connecting with Guru Granth Sahib Ji, so there will never be a need to fight anymore and we can finally have peace.

So, let’s stop focusing on the Indian government; what they did to create the problem and what they didn’t do to solve it. Let’s focus on us; what we did and what we can do to solve our own problems. Let’s stop waiting till it is too late.

http://www.sikhsangat.org/2010/12/disabling-punjab-nris-to-blame/

| Leave a comment

Educating the Masses

Every so often Sikhs make the local news and the uneducated masses have a field day talking about terrorists.  Then a Sikh comes upon that page and has field day talking about how we are a misunderstood population and how the commenter’s are ignorant. Everyone talks about the issue for a few days in their own little groups and move on but no real effort is made to educate the masses. Sikhs have a few big groups like Saldef, United Sikhs and etc that try to take responsibility for educating people but it is not effect as possible because the general public is not so involved. All Sikhs must take equal responsibility to educate the masses.  That is only possible if we understand why we are so misunderstood, stand strong in our faith and then make efforts to educate.

It is very important to understand that must people that make the negative comments, usually having nothing against Sikhs and in most cases don’t even know what it means to be Sikh. Their fear, their harsh words are all stem from the turban, which they associate with terrorists. While it is true that most people that carry out terrorist attacks don’t wear turbans, it is equally true the videos we are shown off terrorist training camps, they all wear turbans. When people think of terrorists they see the image of a guy wearing turban, doing target practice or they see Osama Bin Laden. The turban wearing people become root of the problem terrorism for people that are mad at terrorists after 9/11. Its not Sikhs they hate; its the turban wearing people they are shown on tv practicing for jihad, they hate. 

They don’t hate Sikhs, yet fearing them Sikhs took off their turbans. When Guru Gobind Singh Ji gave the Sikhs the turban, it could get you killed for wearing it. Where was the fear then? Back then Sikhs were proud of being Sikhs and challenged the practice of not being allowed to wear the turban. They held their head up high (with turban on top) and faced martyrdom instead of taking the turban off. Today you get Sikhs that use the fear of death and being called a terrorist to take off the turban the first chance they get. We rather be slaves t o other peoples thoughts and beliefs, then stick up for ours own beliefs. Sikhs need to break free, learn their history, get guidance from Guru Granth Sahib Ji and wear their turbans with pride.

Only when Sikhs are proud of their appearance, understand their religion and are firm in their belief, they can get the masses to understand them. If each Sikh wore their his or her turban with pride and lived a Gursikh lifestyle; how can anyone believe the tv images over real life people? Its not fliers, lectures or a million dollar campaigns that are going to people understand how Sikhs are and stop being hurtful towards the turban, It is going to be each Sikh wearing their turban with pride and being extra kind and clearing up misunderstandings of the people around them. Put on the turban and a great attitude and watch the people come to you to be educated about Sikhism. When Sikhs become hostile to questions because they think everyone thinks of them as terrorist anyways, it just makes matters worse.

A little bit of patients and lots of education is going to be the key to changing the image of the turban. Sikhs need to educate themselves on why people don’t like the turban, their religion and then educate others.

A plea to all Sikhs get guidance from Guru Granth Sahib Ji and wear your turbans with pride.

GuruGranthSahib

 

 

 

Authors Note: Please ask me or the admins at Sikhsangat.com before copying.

Source: http://www.sikhsangat.org/2010/11/educating-the-masses/

Posted in Miri | 3 Comments

Bandi Chhor Divas

A last soul, Jahangir, tormented the world

All over India flag of injustice he unfurled

He caused 5th Sikh Guru to receive Martyrdom

But the 6th Sikh Guru would bring freedom

So Jahangir imprisoned the Sikh Guru

He didn’t know that one can’t imprison the Guru

 

 

To Guru Ji’s cloak they held

Grateful to the power he weld

It was the imprisoned princes he led

Jahangir was left alone with his misdeed

Once again it was the good deed

That would succeed

 

Guru Ji, Sangat had been lost without you

Union with you is all they wanted to pursue

Grand celebrations were just not enough

Showing their love for you was tough

In love and awe they follow your lead

Liberation of our souls was all they  need

 

Hundreds of years later we still seek

Though Kaljug is at its peak

We know you will save us

Then why about death we make such a fuss

Your jot lives on in Guru Granth Sahib Ji

Your merciful spirit lives on in Guru Granth Sahib Ji

 

Oh my soul, bow to the True Guru

Please take the lead my Guru

Posted in Poems | Leave a comment