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  1. The guru warns against rituals. rituals are those things that serve no practical purpose and could rather have some downsides. with ritual one does it for the sake of doing it. A ritual can also be a tradition that one is doing out of habit. It may be something blindly followed without question. it may certainly also be done out of fear- either of not conformism to the majority, or out of fear of some mythical story- e.g. you will burn in hell if you dont always do so and so ritual. Or you will suffer greatly if you don't always touch the floor of a car door before entering it. the word ritual is also used in English as being something done blindly e.g. "She rituallistically put on the television at 6 o clock". There are clearly many rituals that exist in the broader pubjabi community, itself derived from rituals, myths and fears from various religions and social customs- all which have nothing to do with being a sikh. But you question bani as a ritual. If the bani is being done for the sake of maintaining a rehat and only that, then it is a ritual. Indeed maintainng a rehat without ever understanding the fact that it is something to eventually guide you to the truth, is a ritual. Most people you ask have no valid reason for keeping unshorn hair. answers are invariably 'crown on head', 'gift from guru', 'because it is rehat' etc, which is notihng but ritual. if you hope to actually gain something from it and see it is a part of your sadhana or spritual practice and actually engage with the bani then it is not a ritual. if you wake up in the morning with great love in your heart for God, medidate on naam and allow yourself to reach great spiritual highs and actually communicate with the shabad guru through the banis, then that spiritual practice is definitely serving a real and important purpose in your life. If however you spit it out or mumble it quickly to get it over with then it is surely a ritual. How to avoid ritual i hear you ask? Bibek. Which means thinking critically using Gurmat principles (but with an ego-free and God loving mind to prevent plotting and scheming). now honestly answer this question: do you reading this spit out your bani to get it over with/listen to it on tape/do it because you feel it is rehat or because it is a 'punn' or that if you didn't then it is bad? Then sorry you are treating shabad Guru with great disrespect. So fortunate to be blessed with access to shabad worth more than anything in the world and you throw it away as ritual, shame on you. I have travelled wide and far and have found virtually no people who actually love the banis, let the shabad caress the tongue with every sound, allow youself to connect with the Shabad. Almost all people I meet think I am mad when I look forward to my bani as one of the highlights of my day. Shame on you.
  2. Panthicity and S4NGH- you're speaking over people's heads I'm afraid- people are generally unwilling to listen to this subject. For starters a Sikh must always make the ethical choice. Being a Sikh is being an embodiment of ethics. This is a simple principle that when applied, can make life very easy. However some people don't care about ethics. Ethics when applied to this particular issue immediately raises red flags for the suffering and torturing of the domesticated milk-giving animals and the deforestation, loss of habitat and biodiversity and global warming caused by the existence of a cattle industry. It is entirely unsustainable. As regards to the health- whilst there is debate for either side in terms of nutrition, the fact remains that this is an unnatural source of food- indeed meat is preferential to milk as per evolutionary biology. The simple fact is that human mothers do not produce milk beyond a specific time period, that breast milk is biologically intended for supplementary nutrition of small children and that the fact that the lactase enzyme is genetically switched off in adults means that the vast majority of dairy consumers are just giving themselves gas, IBS etc. Panthicity and S4NGH have stated clear facts, there are far more to be gleaned from the scientific literature. The Vitamin B12 argument has also been discussed to death in the literature- if you would care to search for the scientific articles (evolutionary biology of B12 sources for human nutrition). The general scientific consensus is that minimum animal products is better than more and indeed given the extremely low returns for a normally selected lactating cow/buffalo- it is not economically viable to rear such animals, otherwise demand would far outstrip supply. This is the reason why hormones or indeed selective breeding for short lived animals that are continually in poor health, to produce abnormal levels of poor standard milk- and which suffer and die a miserable death. Whilst an organic standard may assure things like non-use of anti-biotics and hormone, the animal is nevertheless exploited and suffers a great deal, but small-scale and seasonal organic produce is certainly preferential to large-scale exploitation. As Mr S4NGH has correctly observed- the male sex is largely murdered for veal and when the female is no longer economically viable, it is also murdered for the meat and leather. From an anthropological perspective, domestication of cattle is a relatively recent phenomemon (thousands of years) and indeed storage of dairy in the long-term (through hard cheeses) was a rare occurence, limited to certain african cultures and passed on to northern Europeans via land migration. Due to a genetic mutation, the nothern-most of Europeans retained the lactase enzyme to be able to digest milk in adulthood and thusly the pre-modern dairy industry mushroomed from there around the world. Most dark skinned Africans, South Indians, native Americans and other aboriginal populations cannot digest lactose in adulthood- which is normal biological physiology. Those with north-european ancestry may have the required genetic mutation, including a large minority of (the generally fairer) north indians/pakistanis/arabs. Culturally, dairy consumption would have spread into the Indian sub continent from European land migration and displaced the culture of the aboriginal Indians (anthropolifical evidence reveals that the last remaining aboriginal Indians cannot digest milk and do not consume dairy in their culture). Given this- the timeframe and limited spread of the genetic mutation, dairy consumption has had a causal effect on human evolution and is thusly an abnormal human trait. This is compared to meat consuption, which has played a (albeit debatable to the extent) role in evolution- as humans are descendent from species whose natural diet was nuts, seeds, fruit, roots and herbs, wild grain and small insects and raw fish with limited consumption of meat- which could only be consumed following the proliferation of hunting and fire. Native American tribes and other aboriginal populations living in isolation from the earliest human migrations have an extremely limited or no dependence on meat- and were originally branded pejoratively as 'hunter gatherers' to infer a sense of inferiority to the white man, who were responsible to shaping our understanding of these extremely wise, spiritual and healthy cultures. Anthropoligists and historians are only now beginning to unravel the bias and bigotry to reveal the richness of their lives. Some of these were highly spirutually aware peoples and were the peak of human civilisation. Sadly they and their way of live has been wiped out by greed. Also of note is the fact that it is an easy mistake to use today's standard of economics to judge history- it is a plainly accepted fact that meat and dairy and honey were scarce and therefore expensive commodities and that in capitalist cultures, the masses were generally money-poor and simply could not afford these things, which were viewed as luxuries and depending on the culture, either a rich man's folly or something to be aspired to but never obtained. Related to this is the fact that there is a decided obsession with dairy in many north Indian cultures, which is a relatively recent phenomenon (lower hundreds of years) and has a relationship with the rapid population growth of this time period. Dairy has been seen as highly desirable and not only a mark of having escaped poverty, but also being a matter of superstition- that absence of said dairy will inevitably lead to death and despair. I have personal experience of this through anthropological study of the matter and can be consided an expert in the field. Of course, I present an over-simplification, but the fact remains that milk consumption is therefore a highly sensitive issue for not only those in India, but also their diaspora around the world, as compared to the non-south Asian population in general. It is finally invalid and completely false to make absurd claims of the Gurus drinking milk, as if to portray gallons being slurped with burps and hearty slaps on the back. The fact is that the native Indian species of cow and buffalo gives very little milk and it is extremely rare for the animal to produce more than required for it's own calf- thereby any and all milk that happened to be in excess would have been an extremely rare occurence- probably reserved for women in the community with lactation problems (although evidence suggets that surrogate nursing was the norm in such circs) and in the Hindu-influenced communities, small quantities of ghee (because quite simply very very little would have been available) for ritualistic purposes. That said, whether or not milk producing, cows certainly were (and still are) reared in very small numbers for their manure and bullocks for their strength- which has nothing to do with milk, although this too would not have been condoned by the Gurus, given the animal abuse and exploitation involved and the sheer unnecessity (natural farming, as being re-discovered today, requires no tilling and artificial application of manure). The gurus themselves were the ultimate embodiment of ethics and to claim otherwise is an insult to my guru, so please kindly refrain from dragging the good name of the gurus into debates to back up your arguments- you did not live to witness them (Howwver do feel free to use the intrinsic and practical meanings of the Shabad which make our ethical obligations clear). A combination of ethics, health, anthroplogy etc gives the suitable answer. To the realised person the answer is abundantly clear. Indeed the realised person will observe that this seemingly small issue is linked to all other major issues facing us today- namely mass consumerism, unnatural lives and destruction of the world and that focussing merely on this in isolation of the greater context is a fallacy. To the others, please utilise Gurmat Bibek to be able to critically evaluate any and all decisions you make in life and ask God for guidance. In conclusion, the astute observer will find that I have not spoon fed you any particular answer- indeed I also include options of drastically scaling back consumption and switching to small scale, seasonal and organic (whilst also making other concurrent lifestyle changes). However I will say this: your choices are not personal- dairy consumption is not only causing needless suffering, but is also destroying the environment. Whilst it may be a highly sensitive topic for many North Indians and their diapora, consequences of actions cannot be ignored and the PC line has been crossed in this particular case and I for one will not take it lying down- you are destroying the world for satisfaction of personal desires. I will not entertain replies, particularly those ad hominem. I merely add thinking points to chew on and have no wish to waste my time in useless face slapping. Thank you very much.
  3. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh Dear Sangat ji, I need some help please. I may require an string instrument to be picked up from near Manchester- and either posted or otherwise carried by someone already travelling, down to London. If anyone is able to help please contact me. Thank you kindly. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh
  4. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh panthicunity, you have hit upon a truth of life, a truth which is given by the guru, but like other truths is paid lip-service and is presently ignored and lobbed into the waste basket. Consumerism, capitalism, indeed any form of 'ism' is a terrible disease. Why is it a disease? There has always been lust, greed, ego etc in society translating into uncessary wants, desires and ego fulfilling megalomania, however it was never part of 'popular culture' or the mainstream. For the large part of human history, we have lived HEALTHY and HAPPY lives, and GOD has provided EVERYTHING that we NEED. The Gurus themselves, when in human form had rich and fulfilling lives in every sense. Working hard with his hands to sow his own grain as part of a self-sufficient community, Guru Nanak Sahib ji had everything any self-aware human being could possibly want- God, clean organically grown food grown by his own hand, modest organic clothing made by his own hand and modest hutment to live in with his family, made from renewable materials, living in perfect balance with the natural workd, as pristine and unspoiled nature is God's form as much as any other. The Gurus in human form were experienced horsemen, swordsmen, excelled at poetry and philosophical endevours and took pain in the suffering of the world and were ergo the highest order of philantropists. They did not have any need for MONEY for everything they had and could ever want was provided by living in a symbiotic relationship with their natural surroundings. Pind Nanaki, which is now consumed by Anandpur Sahib, was in particular set up by Guru sahib to be a model small scale self sufficient community, living in balance in a symbiotic relationship with their pristine surroundings (ancient forests and wildlife). Such a life is so great that you will not be able to imagine it and it's benefits- one of the core reasons why today's mainstream lifestyle is such a disease- for we are limited to what we have and are able to experience. Once unspoiled nature is wiped out and limited to small pockets- we know no other way of life. One thing that nobody would pay attention to is sound. We ignore sound. Sound has historically played a great role in the development of humans. Our brains prioritise sound. The universe was created with sound. The sound current of the Naad vibrates in the Shabad, party through sound that may actually be perceived. For one who's inner ear is active through God's grace, is unfortunately overwhelmed by NOISE. Even your mobile phone has electronic parts that give off low frequency noise. The oceans today are abound with noise. This is interfering with the existence of the world at a very subtle and unexplainable (by today's knowledge of 'science') way. However to you, you know no other and it is accepted as normal. The consumerist world is visually driven- media, advertising, sex, suble sound is given the short stick. Keertan (praise the lord God whom I love), is struggling today. For your own amusement, ask a so called 'sikh sant' about said noise and he will be as clueless as a fish out of water. If the shabad guru were to take a human body today, his first reaction would be to instantly recoil and plug his ears for the global background noise from mechanics and electronics is overwhelming to the natural ear. This is one of many subleties that we ignore on a daily basis because we simply don't know better. The Gurus in human form did not have mass consumer products, electricity etc. Their manner of living was akaal- timeless- they were not, contrary to what the so called 'babas' and 99% of the "sikhs" today will tell you, which I personally consider to be absolure heresy, that the Gurus in human form were poor unfortunate backward uneducated people living in poverty of body and mind. They will not say so in those precide words but they will readily imply it in suggesting that the Gurus would "jump" at the "opportunity" to live with today's mod cons and consumerist lifestyle. In other words, in these days of Godlessness, we do not trust, nor believe the Guru nor follow their example when it does not suit. Dhan shabad guru cries hoarse about the pointlessness of accumulating uncessary material wealth. Gurbani refers to the futineless of applying the cleverness of the mind towards unjust and pointless means, and that they will not only be left behind, but may be the cause of problems unto yourself and others, including the natural words. Gurbani taken as a whole is profound to the extent, in my opinion, that the vast majority of people are perhaps unwilling to put it all together, or they are simple unwilling- stuck in the downward spiral of maya initiated by their own selfish egoistic houmai-ridden selves. Punjabis, who make up the overwhelming majority of Sikhs are amongst the most materialistic and consumerist societies in existence today. Statistics show that they are they make up the most materialistic and consumerist immigrant communities in the UK and the USA, surpassing the Jews, who (stereotypically) have a history of hoarding wealth. Punjabis within India are part of the whole developing nation system, that is to say, mindless "devepment" and "progress" at any cost, however what "development" and "progress" exactly? Punjab today has toxic rivers and polluted air, if there is any water at all left to flow, non existent ancient forest cover, no real pristine unspoiled nature to speak of and people are unsprisingly dying of cancers and various modern age lifestyle diseases, and this indeed holds true for most of the Sub continent. There are fortunately some who appeal for zero development, but such people are dismissed without though, as "backward savages" (whereas in fact they may be highly enlightened). How does one do introspection without bias is a valid question I hear you ask (or indeed should be asking). In order to be able to analyse the situation, one must disassociate from the present, as if we were looking at our present as if it were some civilisation in history. Only through this detachment from the daily grind, are we able to see how such fools we are. It is well established (all agree regardless of faith or godlessness), that life's true meaning is about positive virtues and self enlightemnment and indeed this is where the West his been headed in aspiration for a while now- i.e. clean air, health, organic food, world-free from poverty and suffering, sparing nature, pursuit of arts, poetry and philosophy etc- unfortunately they do it in the only way they know how- i.e. through the global economic system- i.e. ratrace to the top, collecting as much money as possible, trickle down to the poor, gaining the stresses and diseases of this life, and then trying to supplement it with the afore-mentioned good stuff (at the expense of dumping their waste then on the third world), further concreting in the minds of those in the developing countries that this is the only way to personal salvation. God of course be damned or is separate from life itself. And for those who cry hoarse about econmics and poverty- All whilst Gurbani tells us that poverty and suffering are a cause of human greed and selfishness, rather than any inherent trait- for God created the most perfect system and is the source of all things good. All the greatest thinkers throughout human history agree. You however may not agree based simply on the fact that you're part of this sytem. It is a highly intoxicating system from which we cannot detach for even mere self-introspection. It is a disease, a cancer of the highest order. Ask a so called 'sikh saint' about living a self-sustainable life, they way God has willed and he will look at you stupidly. Let us compare to the time of Guru sahib in human form- when the lions roamed free from persecution, from Gujarat to the Himalayas, when the rivers flowed undammed and where Guru Gobind Singh received the shabad of Benti Choupaye from Akaal Purakh and immortalised the teer sutadrav within it. There are no two ways about it- humans are a scourge on the earth- every place they occupy becomes wasteland or concrete jungle. We generally struggle to coexist with nature and wildlife is killed of in the biggest genocide in the history of the world- flora and fauna that have flourished for millions of years undisturbed and which at a subtle level, more subtle than man may ever be able to comprehend actually support our survival including through the subtle vibrations they release, but that is the subject of another debate. The human population explosion in the world is a NEW phenomenon. If you don't believe the GURU sahib, then please read "The third revolution" by Paul Harrison (http://www.amazon.com/The-Third-Revolution-Environment-Sustainable/dp/0140146598), which should be essential reading in schools- you absolutely must read this in order to understand why we are where we are today. Was the world always exploding with humans spilling out of every corner of the earth, widespread famines and diease, polluted water and air, consumerism/money/economics/capitalism/communism/'ism's of any kind- a big fat emphatic NO. We started out as living in small self sufficient, happy and healthy communities- highly rich in language, arts, culture and science (the average man knew more about astronomy and nature than you, the alleged modern school system educated reader). Research also about the native americans- not the plains Indians immortalised in pop western films, but rather the highly advanced aztec and other southern native populations wherein each man was farmer-priest-worker and soldier rolled into one (ring any bells?). Watch the documentary "500 nations" to know more about these enlightened people (again partly as we rather not believe the Guru's shabad and life example and like to believe others). Of course all the peace loving and highly advanced civilisations in existence were wiped out by greed and conquest at the end of the day. If we want to believe the Gurus, the poignant truth is available in the Shabad if you search with a true heart. The truth are available directly to those Gurmukhs whose mind is attached solely on GOD, if they so yearn for said truth. If however you are unable to do mere introspection and are unwilling to even consider than any alternative to the mainstream popular way of money driven- life being aspired for today, even exists, forget even could be optimal, then that is ego of the highest order, for we must always challenge our assumptions, no matter how basic, and learn the truth from the Guru and ask guide to guide us INTUITIVELY. Life is meant to be intuitive. Sahej. Without uncessary mental stress, consumerism ratrace included. Any any all so called 'modern' development is nothing more than a solution to problems created by previous "developments". Think about it. Do you know that today's lifestyle would not have been possible without oil? I bet you do not know that Guru Gobind Singh ji expressly forbade the burning of crude oil: maati ka tel jo is par jaale, maat ka tel phir usee ko jaale ['maati ka tel' actually meaning 'crude oil' and not just kerosene oil, which is one of the early petroleums. Plastics and chemicals are made from oil. This means an entirely organic life using renewable materials in all aspects of life. The Gurus lived this life and today even the "babas" cannot manage without crude oil and it's derivatives. But it's possible I assure you. Read also the "one straw revolution" by Fukuoka, another book for essential reading, it will help you break your mind's link between "job" "naukri" "money" etc and life. [Gurbani is very clear as to what is one's true profession and one's true trade and job but we pay these shabads lip-service as usual]. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS JOB OR PROFESSION. In fact it is downright ridiculous to define yourself by this. On ownership: Gurbani is again very clear on what is capable of being owned. Slavery has existed in human history and continues to exist. The majority of 21st century slaves including children sex slaves, exist in India- a shameful truth indeed. Whilst today we have begun to understand that human beings cannot be 'owned', not long ago it was the norm to consider ownership of an individual, as mainstream thought. The bible, koran, torah, hindu scriptures all accept slavery, even if they ask one to be kind to one's slaves. God rejects slavery and seeks emancipation of his form. It is all his form. ALL. Parcicularly unspoiled nature. People buy and sell land. They are slave owners and enslave nature for their benefits. It is no secret that the big consumer push in the last 200 years has been on the back of slavery of humans prior and nature subsequent- for such 'development' needs to come from somewhere. In the sense that energy is finite, someone has to suffer for another's immoral gain. One can be a humble servant of God and be both friend and guardian of land. Nature has a right to self existence. Humans however see unspoiled nature as being far too much a temptation- for it must be conquered. There are some places where we are just not meant to be. Can you imagine a life without money? Without being a wage slave? Living in a peaceful, self-sufficient sustainable community that is highly self-aware? One where the naam vibrates? One where wildlife roam free? Can such a life exist today? It is very difficult but possible and this servant is amongst a few who have been ordered by God to try to make it possible. For today's lifestyle is not sustainable and will implode, I forewarn you. And when this happens only those who are living by their own hands will survive. And such life is bliss and the closest one to God whilst still living, I assure you. For anyone who reads this, let it be a though provoking message for self-intrspection, I do not present you with this golden information for mindless debate on this website- my words are for self introspection and if you want to know more, do an ardaas and God will lead you to like minded individuals, Inshallah. Please do not insult this servant of the Lord God by reading too far into the inevitable errors in the message, for he is not perfect, but the essence I hope is clear enough. Many words and no praise for God- such is my ego. God is my true inspiration, my sole friend, my only passionate lover, my parents, my support and my destroyer too. Unseen and unheard or conspicuous- he is all I see in everything- man, animal or tree, thoughts, actions and words, God is there waiting to be recognised. I rarely use internet today as I have left behind my 'consumerism' life of old, and only use this technology during the transition to a life free of . It is my God given mission to assist in bringing a self sustaining natural way of life back to humanity and I will happily die towards this aim- and die I might need to as this disease of consumerism/money is so toxic that even the mere suggestion of an alternative can get me killed in some parts. But I belong to God and not anyone else. Take care. Love your God. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh
  5. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh We've been everywhere but no success, it's mostly sikhs in the delhi motor trade or who drive an Enfield and we've only across sikhs who are wheeling and dealing and running after money or wanting to scam us- all but one elderly scooter parts Sardar who tried his best to help us but in vain. May god have mercy on these people and show them a path away from greed. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh
  6. Please anyone? Most Enfield motorcycle owners and market traders are sikh but we're having no luck. Is there anyone in delhi who can help please? We need it to transport items and people to far flung places. Please. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh
  7. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh Sadsangat ji, A delhi based charitable trust involved in building completely self-sufficient communities is setting up a new village. children's orphanages and parchar of Guru jis message throughout India is also planned (and possibly worldwide one day God willing). The trust is in urgent need of a 2nd hand motorcycle to transport heavy goods and also people across long distances, ideally an Enfield Bullet. Please would sangat help to aquire this vehicle. A Sewadar is in delhi presently, not having any success with market traders or classifieds due to low budget, please PM for contact details. The charity is also looking for dedicated volunteers and lifelong commitment sewadars too. Please PM for details. There will be more requirements that come up, daas will update this post as and when. The trust is operating entirely within trust funds donated by those who have dedicated their lives to this sewa. Monetary donations are not being accepted at present, but sangat may locally offer expertise, equipment, farm animals, and particularly (agriculture/forest) land for sites, in any Indian state. God bless. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh Daas
  8. Why has admin not closed this disgusting and racist thread yet? Or does admin need a point by point rebuttal to point out the filthy and depraved comments made, against God, the great Guru ji and his sikhs? Please stop hating and ask God for guidance. I will pray specifically for your souls. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh
  9. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/apr/28/australia-boom-aboriginal-story-despair Australia's boom is anything but for its Aboriginal people The story of the first Australians is still poverty and humiliation, while their land yields the world's biggest resources boom Eleven miles by ferry from Perth is Western Australia's "premier tourist destination". This is Rottnest Island, whose scabrous wild beauty and isolation evoked, for me, Robben Island in South Africa. Empires are never short of devil's islands; what makes Rottnest different – indeed, what makes Australia different – is silence and denial on an epic scale. "Five awesome reasons to visit!" the brochure says. These range from "family fun" to "historical Rottnest". The island is described as "a guiding light, a defender of the peace". In eight pages of prescribed family fun, there is just one word of truth – prison. More than any other colonial society, Australia consigns its dirtiest secrets, past and present, to wilful ignorance or indifference. When I was at school in Sydney, standard texts all but dismissed the most enduring human entity on earth, the indigenous first Australians. "It was quite useless to treat them fairly," the historian Stephen Roberts wrote, "since they were completely amoral and incapable of sincere and prolonged gratitude." His acclaimed colleague Russel Ward was succinct: "We are civilised today and they are not." That Australia has since changed is not disputed. To measure this change, a visit to Western Australia is essential. The vast state – our richest – is home to the world's biggest resources boom: iron ore, gold, nickel, oil, petroleum, gas. Profits are in the multiple billions. When the former Labor prime minister Kevin Rudd tried to impose a modest tax, he was overthrown by his own party following a A$22m (£14.6m) propaganda campaign by the mining companies, whose mates in the media uphold the world's first Murdocracy. "Assisted by Rio Tinto" reads the last line of an unctuous newspaper article on the boom's benefits to black Australians. At airports passengers are greeted by banners with pictures of smiling Aboriginal faces in hard hats, promoting the plunderers of their land. "This is our story," says the slogan. It isn't. Barely a fraction of mining, oil and gas revenue has benefited Aboriginal communities, whose poverty is an enduring shock. In Roebourne, in the mineral-rich Pilbara, 80% of the children suffer from an ear infection called otitis media, which can cause partial deafness. Or they go blind from preventable trachoma. Or they die from Dickensian infections. That is their story. The Nyoongar people have lived around what is now Perth for many thousands of years. Incredibly, they survive. Noel Nannup, a Nyoongar elder, and Marianne McKay, a Nyoongar activist, accompanied me to Rottnest. Nannup's protective presence was important to McKay. Unlike the jolly tourists heading for "Rotto", they spent days "preparing for the pain". "All our families remember what was done," said Noel Nannup. What was done was the starving, torture, humiliation and murder of the first Australians. Wrenched from their communities in an act of genocide that divided and emasculated the indigenous nations, shackled men and boys as young as eight endured the perilous nine-hour journey in an open longboat. Terrified prisoners were jammed into a windowless "holding cell", like an oversized kennel. Today, a historical plaque refers to it as "the Boathouse". The suppression is breathtaking. In the prison known as the Quod as many as 167 Aboriginal prisoners were locked in 28 tiny cells. This lasted well into the 20th century. The prison is now called Rottnest Lodge. It has a spa, and there are double bunks for children: family fun. I booked a room. Noel Nannup stood in the centre of the room and described its echoes of terrible suffering. The window looked out on to where a gallows had stood, where tourists now sunbathed. None had a clue. A "country club" overlooks a mass grave. One psychopath who ran the Quod was Henry Vincent. He liked to whip prisoners and murdered two of them, an inquiry was told. Today, Vincent is venerated as a "pioneer", and tourists are encouraged to follow the "Vincent Way heritage trail". In the Governor's Bar, the annual Henry Vincent golf trophy is displayed. No one there had a clue. Rotto is not the past. On 28 March Richard Harding, formerly inspector of custodial services, declared Western Australia a "state of imprisonment". During the boom Aboriginal incarceration has more than doubled. Interned in rat-infested cells, almost 60% of the state's young prisoners are Aboriginal – out of 2.5% of the population. They include children. A former prisons minister, Margaret Quirk, told me the state was now "racking and stacking" black Australians. Their rate of incarceration is five times that of black people in apartheid South Africa. Black Australians are stereotyped as violent, yet the violence routinely meted out to them by authority is of little interest. An elder known as Mr Ward was arrested for driving under the influence on a bush road. In searing heat, he was driven more than 300 miles in the iron pod of a prison van run by the British security company GSL. Inside, the temperature reached 50C. Mr Ward cooked to death, his stomach burned raw where he had collapsed on the van's scorching floor. The coroner called it a "disgrace", but no one was prosecuted [ see footnote]. No one ever is. Eco-tourism is also booming. The Kimberley region is popular with Europeans. Last year, 40 Aboriginal youngsters killed themselves there, a 100-fold increase. When I first reported on indigenous Australia a generation ago, black suicide was rare. Today, the despair is so profound that the second cause of Aboriginal death is suicide. It is booming. • John Pilger's film on Australia, Utopia, is released in the autumn • This article was amended on 29 April and further amended on 30 April 2013 to clarify that Western Australia's director of public prosecutions did rule out criminal charges on the grounds that there was not "sufficient evidence". However, following a campaign by the family of Mr Ward WorkSafe, the body that oversees health and safety in WA, brought brought a civil action in Kalgoorlie magistrates court, under the Occupational Safety and Health Act 1984. Graham Powell and Nina Stokoe, G4S guards, were fined A$9,000 and A$11,000 respectively by the court; Western Australia's Department of Corrective Services was fined A$285,000 and G4S was fined A$285,000 by Kalgoorlie magistrates court.
  10. Nagar kirtan a waste of time, money, energy etc. It is not gurmat, it is not part of rehat, it simply is maya. If you disagree, please contemplate on the shabad. If you still disagree, may God help you. One does not need a parade to spread the message of sikhi, one needs committed Gursikhs who are so full of love for God that they will spread His true message throughout mankind and serve them. Rather, NGD is PPD (Punjab Parade Day)- complete with stubble faced dhol players leading masses of people, for most of whom, it's one of few occasions in the year that they step into the Gurdwara. PPD is an ego-boost and an opportunity to celebrate. Youth do not need 'pride' to connect to God (rather Sikhi teaches the manmukh to eliminate false pride from the mind) nor does a gurmukh need to celebrate anything but God's glory (which can be celebrated all the time). You get the customary gatka performance, which is arguably not even an authentic and practical martial art. All cultures and faiths have some kind of parade. E.g. The Christians do Easter parades, especially in Europe. Waheguru ji has spoken dur ki shabad through the great guru. This is all one needs in life. Spend all your time, money, energy etc on gurmat- serve humanity, sing God's praises and remember him day and night and continuously, contemplate on the Shabad, and strive to spread the true essence of God throughout humanity. Boycott your next nagar kirtan. Rather, gather as many people as you can and organise smagam or the like. Expend no money on festivities, rather ask for donations for charity. And for Waheguru ji's sake, please somebody tell the peacock turbanned dhol bhajas to stay at home. Now is the time to do simran. Switch off your computer/phone and allow the gurmantar to permeate through your mind. And don't stop. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh
  11. waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh 1. Dhan Dhan Guru Granth Sahib ji Maharaj, Shabad Guru, is a living guru, as much as Guru Gobind Singh ji and Guru Nanak Dev ji. Can you imagine Guru Gobind Singh sahib welcoming non-sikhs into his house and carrying out their marriage with his blessings? Will he have hours to waste to attend a ceremony of a couple who don't give 2 bits about God and Sikhi? Does he like patits? No. But yes, he will welcome all and sundry into his court to sing to them the Shabad to imbibe God's true essence and help them spiritually and bless them with amrit. 2. As per Gurbani, marriage is a spiritual union of 2 souls. Anand Karaj is based on this fact. Guru Sahib can only give his blessings to such a union. Any other marriage is based on lust and cannot be entertained by anand karaj. It is not a ritualistic ceremony. OP: hindus, if they are unwilling to take amrit, can go bow at a temple or can easily have a registry marriage and spend the average $50,000 western asian wedding fund to spend on charity work. God would be pleased with this. 3. To those claiming that such marriage somehow boosts numbers, same people are quiet when it comes to doing sikhi parchar around the world to spread God's message and quench spiritual thirst, same people like to see sikhi as being owned by those having a sikh ancestor, same people mostly have not taken amrit. Get over it, ancestry is meaningless and void. Each person has their own karam, destiny and life to live. Anyone can become a sikh and if marriage is destined, have a spiritual union marriage blessed by the true guru in his home. Numbers argument is ridiculous. Muslims, Christrians have to convert before being able to have a religious wedding, and they don't have the high standard of spiritual union set by Gurbani, nor do they have Guru. Those who want to bow during Anand Karaj as non-sikhs and for non-spritual union reasons, please respect Guru ji but also think about your jeevan. You will find a gurdwara willing to perform Anand Karaj, but what is the use of such a marriage- Guru ji won't be blessing it nor is it a spiritual union. Anand Karaj really is a beautiful thing. Pita ji is eager to bless you with spirituality so please visit his home and drink amrit from his 5 piare and he will be more than happy to perform the wedding of his children. Thank you. waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh
  12. Waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh Thanks for replying, please don't mind follow up questions, I'm trying to understand. I understand humility of folded hands, but what is the spiritual significance of standing up ritual? Also, when in human form, did guru sahib also stand during ardaas or did they remain seated. I still don't understand, So are we kneeling to Guru sahib as he is present or to Nirgun God who is omnipresent? The ritual has to be fixed- it can't be matha thek when Guru ji is present and to God when he is not present. One does not kneel to God physically in Sikhi- one kneels with utter humility to God 24/7 inside the heart and mind and especially since God is omnipresent, kneeling physically means that God is only worth kneeling to at that point/God is in the direction in which you bowed your head (like the muslims believe in their prayer ritual). I have observed that sikhs do not necessarily do matha thek after ardaas outside a gurdwara (but some may touch the floor with their hand). So what is the rehat maryada on this, and if one is to matha thek when Guru sahib is not present, what are we bowing to and what is the spiritual significance of it? I also would not personally matha thek to a gutka sahib; it may contain bani but it is not Guru sahib. Yes, I mean towards the end, after sarbat da bhala, and again after fateh, when 'Sab sikhan ko hukam hain..' and/or 'Jo bolo so nihal...sat siri akal' is to be followed. Why not just bow once? What is the significance of doing it twice? That leads on to the question- when is 'Sab sikhan ko hukam hain..' to be said? I have only heard it being said after one ardas during sunday service after main service ends, in my local gurdwara. Is the dohra not included because it's not part of a granth, but rather noted down by eyewitnesses in their rehitnamas?
  13. Good to see sangat stand up for Dhan Dhan Dhan Dhan Dhan Guru sahib Maharaj. The Sikh's speech was both assertive as well as conciliatory and as he said indeed we are all children of Guru Sahib and one God. Such reverence for guru sahib brought tears to my eyes. If only sikhs would repeat this across the world.
  14. rrss

    New to Sikhi

    My dear brother, my advice is thus: Sikhism is all about God; it is very God-focussed, keep your mind attached to God during your journey. Be wary of rituals (insist on understanding the spirirutal meanings of everything) and try to understand the essence of Sikhi for yourself (try some quiet meditation). Sikhi is a universal path for all of humanity (humanity is one, God is one); it is not just 'another good religion', love for God is the true religion. Try to forget everything that you know and have been taught (heavens, hells, God's qualities and form, creation myths etc), and allow yourself to intuitively discover spiritual bliss. The Shabad (Guru ji) is from God and not mere words, deeper contemplation of the shabad will help you in this process, you don't need any middle man between you and God. Finally remember that spirituality is not a hobby or an activity- life is spirituality and spirituality is life. Regarding resources, others have given you excellent links. Sikhiwiki.org is an excellent resource, srigranth.org has acceptable translations of the Shabad Guru and I would also recommend reading something like Bhai Randhir Singh ji's autobiography. PM me if you need to ask anything. God bless.
  15. waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh I have learnt the ardaas ritual by observing sangat in the gurdwara- when to kneel, when to rise etc. Outside of the gurdwara, I do a personal and long ardaas (conversation with God) without the standard structure present in gutka sahibs. However now I am learning the ardaas, for the sake of community harmony and in case my services ever are called upon, I need to be able to perform the ritual correctly, but I don't know what is actually happening during ardaas. Please help me understand. Questions: - What is the reason for standing and folding hands? - After 'sarbat da bhala', who are we kneeling to? Since I have only been part of ardaas at the gurdwara- I have assumed this is matha tek to Guru sahib who is present, is this correct? Or is it like muslims bowing to God during their prayer ritual? When ardaas is performed outside the gurdwara and whenever Guru sahib is not present, does one still do matha thek to the floor? - Why do we kneel and stand up twice (before and after Fateh)? - When is 'Sab sikhan ko hukam hain..' to be said? I cannot find this hymn in my gutka sahib. - Or if you have time, please could you describe the full ritual in detail with spiritual explanations to each action. Much appreciated. waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh
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