Sunday, July 15, 2018

Why Jagir Kaur and SGPC should not create trouble

I've learnt one thing from Islam. That it is not the violence of a few that kills a religion. It is the silence of the majority.

And I don't want to let that happen to Sikhism. I do not want to be the majority that stayed silent because 'it wasn't such a big issue.' It is.

So here goes:

1. Guru Nanak said "Ek Onkar" - There is only one God. There is no difference among his people so long as they are all devotees who do good deeds (Kirat Karo) and Recite his name(Naam Japo), preferably as a group united in devotion (Sangat). From the first Guru to the Tenth, the MOST IMPORTANT tenet of the religion has been to get over our caste identity, our superstition and belief in ritual over devotion.

So, if you are a person who uses his caste name in spite of the surname given by Guruji - Singh and Kaur, then you have failed a very basic teaching of the Gurus. You can either be Singh or Bedi. You can't be both.

2. You belong to  a religion which does not even allow different names for boys and girls. Which allowed a woman to reach the highest administrative role in the religion - heading SGPC. A religion that simply requires a member of the family to read from the prayer book. That member of the family can be male or female and usually, it is both. So when you try to honour kill your daughter, what exactly gives you the right to certify other Sikhs after that?

3. Guru Gobind Singh told us before he left his mortal coil - henceforth, the Hukumnama can only come from the Guru Granth Sahib. Not from any human. There will be no more "Gurus". The Granth Sahib is all the spiritual guidance that you need.
So if you try to issue religious edicts, you are directly violating the most fundamental, sacred tenet of the religion -  Sab Sikhan ko hukam hai, Guru Maanyo Granth. Don't you EVER dare issue an order on behalf of the religion.

4. The SGPC is an administrative body - it stands for Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee. - The chief body for administration of the Gurudwaras.

It is neither the religious head nor the spiritual guide of the Sikhs. The Sikhs do not have a religious head. Unlike the church, we don't have a hierarchical structure of spirituality that rolls up to the Golden Temple.

We were told to recite our Bani wherever we were. We were told to keep our heart pure. When you try to take on a spiritual or religious policing role, the rest of us need to stand up and remind you that the Granth Sahib is our Guru and the Bani is our spiritual guide. The Sangat is where we gain our spiritual salvation. The feature of the Sangat is that every human being is equal. Which is why you see people doing Jodon ki seva (cleaning the footwear) at a Gurudwara. We grow up learning that all human beings are equal and deserve the same respect.

No one can tell a person if they are a Sikh or not. There is no indoctrination ritual. No Kalma to read and no baptism to be performed. No one can decide the "degree" of Sikh that one is(another post on that). And if you are so free, work to ensure that first, you read the real teachings of the Gurus and then, you take them to a state that is getting buried under a pile of drugs. And please make a public apology to Karenjit Kaur on your way.

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