"I Wrote Your Name..."

Posted by 'GirlofOne' on the SikhiUnleashed Forum

WaheGuru Ji I wrote your name in the sky
but the wind blew it away.

WaheGuru Ji I wrote your name in the sand
but the waves washed it away.

WaheGuru Ji I wrote your name in the sea
but the fish took it away.

WaheGuru Ji I wrote your name in my heart
But there it will forever stay.

Best way to act in the face of discrimination:

Sant Jarnail Singh Khalsa Bhindranwale:

"If we speak to someone with hatred and try to assert our superiority, it will create hatred in the minds of everyone. So long as we have the spirit of love...is there any power on earth that can subdue us?"

(post taken from sister Gurminder Kaur's blog)

I thought my days of experiencing racism and discrimination were over...well, at least blatant discrimination. Yesterday, I learned I was wrong.

Now, growing up in a small town, I experienced racism regularly. My elementary school memories are tainted by a racist principal. I recall two incidents very clearly:

1) Three atlases were stolen from the school library. These were very nice, leather bound and I’m guessing very expensive atlases. Now, I have never been an avid geography fan, and as a child I was happy in my little town (thinking it was the world) reading Sweet Valley High and Babysitter’s Club books. Yes, it’s pretty amazing I pursued a higher education. Anyway, back to the topic…the principal pulls myself (I was in grade 6), my sister (who was in grade 3) and my brother (who was in grade one) into a classroom and said, “We’ll understand why you took the atlases…you don’t get to see to many nice at home and you wanted to have something nice”. That incident still incites a spark of rage in me when I think back to it.
2) Again, in grade six, our principal was giving a lecture about the importance of fitness. Our class was lagging in the number of laps we had run during our “running” unit of physical education. So, he was telling us how we had to worry about our weight, especially girls, and he proceeded to go through all the girls in the class telling them if they had the body type to worry about getting fat. I won’t even go into the ramifications of impacting a girl’s self esteem by saying something like that. He then came to me and said something like “oh women in your culture always have to worry about weight when they get older so you will have to for sure”. Interesting how he didn’t say that to the other “white washed” East Indian girl in the class. I have to say I felt a bit of triumph when I ran into a classmate last year who he had said would not have to worry about her weight…and she was at least sixty pounds overweight. Does that make me a horrible person? Yes. But, that’s the kind of impact that comment had on me.

The point of all that? I know what racism feels like and I know when I experience it.

You tell me what you think of the following incident:

Yesterday, on my way home from work, I went to Metrotown to find a wallet. I am in desperate need of a wallet, and my sister had told me that I would find great wallets (since the GUESS store has closed down) at this little bag shop. My mother also needs one so I thought I would go there and look around. I look around the shop, and then I notice there were some wallets on display behind the cashier’s counter and they were more the style I was looking for. I guess they were there because they were the “designer” wallets. First of all, I have to say there were two clerks in this tiny shop who literally stood there and stared at me while I was looking around. I felt uncomfortable, but shrugged it off. Then, this Caucasian lady walked in and one of the girls goes straight to her and asks her if she needs help. I give them the benefit of the doubt and think ok she just forgot to ask me. I go up to the counter where both of them are standing. Neither of them makes eye contact with me. I ask to see a wallet behind the counter. One of the girls sorts of waves me in another direction and says, “oh, they are all in this stand here”. There was a little stand on the counter with some wallets in it. I start looking through them, and I’m thinking what I want is not here…it’s back there. Meanwhile both of them are standing there with their arms crossed watching me, but never making direct eye contact. I say to her again, I’m looking at that particular wallet…it’s not here can you show me that one? She again motions to the wallet stand and says, “they’re all there.” At this point, I’m pretty annoyed, and look at her waiting for her to show me where it was or show me the one behind the counter. Her and the other sales clerk are still standing behind the counter just staring at me. I can feel myself getting mad, so I just turn around and walk out after making some comment about their customer service. The lady who had been helped before was standing behind me, and I guess she walked out of the store too even though she was intending to purchase something. She comes up to me and says, “that was horrible the way they treated you…you should report them to the owners…if you want my number I’ll give it to you and I’ll back you up. I’m not purchasing anything from there again.” So, I know it’s not just me who is being paranoid. I was just SO gratified that someone else felt that I had been mistreated simply because of my colour or race, that I immediately felt better, thanked her and said it wasn’t necessary. I felt so violated and awful that I got back on the train without buying anything and returned home.

And now I’m spitting mad! I should have done something about it! WHY should I feel thankful that someone treated me as a human? I am a human. I deserve to be treated that way! The clerks probably forgot all about it or didn’t even think anything of their behaviour. I understand people have bad days. It takes quite a bit for me to make a scene about poor service. I’ve had jobs where people spat at me because of the job I was required to do. I understand rough days. But, I do not understand and from now on will not tolerate discrimination.

It’s like the day when my sister and I were shopping in a popular clothing shop, and we asked for the price of a sweater. Turns out we had misunderstood a sign because of the way it was placed and the sweaters were more expensive than we thought. My sister and I are standing there and discussing if we want two or just one, and the sales clerk says to us with an openly disgusted look on her face, “well, if you can’t afford two, then put the other one away. We don’t bargain here.” Ok, buddy you’re the sales clerk and I’m the shopper. Do you see me working at a minimum wage job? Elitist attitude? You’re going to get it if you treat me like crap just because of the colour of my skin. I think things like that. I never say them because I’m a strong believer in two wrongs do not make a right. I usually just walk away. But that’s how these comments and incidents make me feel…dirty, shameful, resentful, and just horrible in general.

So, if you’ve experienced something similar, don’t be like me. Calm yourself down, get out of the shocked frame of mind… and most importantly take action! Don’t reduce yourself to verbal insults, etc. Take the extra step and go above that person’s authority. Make others aware of it! Boycott the store. If it’s happening at work, find out what your options are. At times, you will hear me become frustrated with the level of political correctness we have to adhere to these days (for example, teachers in Washington state are now being asked not to use red ink pens to correct tests because the amount of red on a student’s papers make them feel inferior to other students who do not have as much red…so they are starting to use purple ink because purple is not associated with being wrong!). However, I also think that if you are being mistreated, blow the whistle…make a ruckus, and be heard. You are not a shit disturber. You are standing up for your rights and deserve to be treated like a human. From now on, I’ll be keeping track of these incidents here and taking action.


Bibek is the practise of only eating from the hands of amritdhari's, people who have been baptised into the Sikh religion.

When I first head about this, I was strongly against it and even ridiculed it saying that it's 'fanatic' or 'extremist'.

The concept is simple, to only eat from the hands of baptised Sikhs who actually practice the religion our Guru's gave us. For example the person must:

1) Follow the Rehit given to us in the baptism/amrit ceremony.
2) Not be bujjar kurehity (have committed any of the 4 sins (Eating meat, taking intoxidants, sex outside of marriage, cutting of hair) which make you peshi ('break your amrit', or mean you have to confess you sin to the 5 pyarey in order to be forgiven)
3) Give Daswandh. Daswandh is one of the most important things in Sikhism, to give one tenth of our earnings to the poor/guru ji. A person who doesnt is considered a thief.

The reason bibeki's follow this is two-fold. The first main reason is because food that is bought from outside, or made by people who dont practice the sikh religion is more likely to be contaminated by meat of some form. I.e Egg's and fish are not considered meat by most vegetarian food places. So even eating at a vegi food place is not considered right.

Also the person who prepares the food, who knows what their level of hygiene is? This is not to say that amritdhari people are instantly cleaner than non-amritdharis but they are expected to wash atleast once a day.

If the person is a smoker the likelihood of the remnant of nicotine being on their clothes is likely. Without washing it is almost impossible to completely remove it once having smoked.

The second aspect of keeping Gurmat Bibek is because the person who makes the food has a direct influence on the 'spiritual nutrition' inside the food.

There are two examples of what is done around the time of food being made, and the outcomes. The first most obvious is the amrit sanchaar ceremony itself. When Amrit is made a sarbloh(iron) bata is used. Into it, is poured water and sugar crystals - it is when TRANSFORMED into amrit.

How is this possible?

The answer is by reciting Bani over it by 5 rehitwaan (people who have kept the rehit) Sikhs. Even if we do not understand the bani fully, the water is made into amrit.

In the same way, if food is made and someone is angry or singing a lustful song then there WILL be impact on the food.

Another example of actions effecting food is when Guru Nanak Dev Ji took two roti's, from one came milk and another came blood.

Blood poured from the rich mans (Malik Bhago) roti who mistreated the poor, working them hard and paying a very meagre wage.
However, milk poured from the roti which had been made by the hard working honest man, Bhai Lalo Ji.

The actions we commit, will have a direct influence on food we eat.

In this way it is likely that someone who has given their head to the Guru, and _should_ have denounced worldly things is more likely to implant the seed of purity into the food - rather than someone who hasnt taken amrit.

The most important thing to do while keeping bibek, is not to get Hankaari (proud) or think that you are better than anyone who does not keep it.

Every amritdhari person should keep bibek, it is a purataan (old school) rehit that has been lost to the Sikh Nation recently but should not be forgotten.

Sarbloh Bibek (is the same as bibek, but only all things are cooked and eaten from iron utensils) should only be kept when a person is doing a certain amount of Kamai. Someone who keeps strict amritvela, and does atleast 2 hours of simran on top of the their nitnem (which may consist of the normal 7 banis and Sukhmani Sahib, aswell as Asa Kee Vaar) for example. This is simply to control the power contained within Sarbloh Bibek, as it is very easy to get proud or think of ourselves as higher than people who dont yet keep the rehit.

Here is an article taken from MKhalsa Blog: Regarding the stages of Sarbloh Bibek...

"Regarding Sarbloh Bibek

I posted this on tapoban today:

Many sarblohis I know, still use water bottles.

Where you draw the line, depends on YOU.

When I started, I still ate bread, chocolate, anything out of a can etc..

But i didnt eat anything that was directly made by a non amritdhari. Only factory made or amritdhari made food.

Slowly, I cut out everything, except for a few things like bread and baked beans, and after awhile, I cut those out too.

For some people it is a long process (for me it was a year or two, and I still do not eat from only sarblohi bibekis, but rather all amritdharis, so I am still in the process).

It depends on you and where you are. My advice is do it, but dont do it slowly, dont be lazy about it. Do it at a pace you are comfortable with though.

Process suggestions for the real beginner (just find out where you are on this):

1. Stop eating meat, or drinking alcohol, stay away from tobacco.

2. Stop eating at places that serve meat or where meat can contaminate your food. (or alcohol).

3. Stop eating out period.

4a. Stop eating from monays, not necessarily from family though (unless they are radhaswami or some other narakdhari)
4b. Stop eating from all non-amritdharis, including family

5. Stop eating really procesed foods/junk foods. For example, chips (crisps), baked beans, ketchup etc.. just stuff thats been in a factory for years or in cans for years, its gross, give it up.

6. Stop eating at gurudwara, *unless they make langar with full rehat that you are now following* (here is where it really starts getting hard). I wont go into the details of why. I am just giving an overview.

7. Stop eating all processed foods, except for a few things, like tofu, bread, cheese, basic things.

8. Start eating and cooking in sarbloh. If its not made in sarbloh, dont worry, just eat it in sarbloh.

9. Cut out all outside foods that you are no longer comfortable with. ie, maybe you feel comfortable with butter, cheese, tofu etc. Still drink juice perhaps?

10. Eat food only cooked in Sarbloh

11. Eat food only cooked in sarbloh, by sarbloh bibekis and cut out unecessary things like cheese, butter, juices, tofu etc. You can make it at home for nothing!

Hope this helps. This is just my view of it...."

The reason why food brought from shops that has been cooked cannot be eaten (such as bread etc) is because it HAS been cooked by someone non-amritdhari. It all depends how far you are practically able to take it.

Some Bibeki's do not eat from the gurudwara either, as the people making the food may not be amritdhari. Food does not become langar because we put it before Guru Ji. If it did the panj pyarai wouldnt have to keep rehit to make amrit, anyone could do it aslong as they knew the 5 banis.

Bibek is a tool to help us get to God.

Many of the the latter day Bhagats/Sants have kept this rehit, for example Bhai Jeevan Singh Ji, Bhai Rama Singh ji, Sant Jarnail Singh Jee Bhindranwale, Bhai Randhir Singh Jee.

Just some thoughts, apologies if i've offended anyone. Please post your thoughts....
Who are ‘Nihangs'?

Sunday 18th September, 2005
Gurmukh Singh - Panthic Weekly Columnist

Anyone who lives free from fear is called a ‘Nihang'. In Raag Aasa Guru Arjan dev Ji has described ‘Nihang' in this very manner:

ਨਿਰਭਉ ਹੋਇਓ ਭਇਆ ਨਿਹੰਗਾ ॥
“ Being fearless, he becomes a ‘Nihang' (bold and daring person).” (Ang 392, SGGS)

Describing the Nihang the old Panth Prakaash states:

‘ਨਿਹੰਗ ਕਹਾਵੈ ਸੋ ਪੁਰਖ, ਦੁਖ ਸੁਖ ਮੰਨੇ ਨ ਅੰਗ॥' (ਪ੍ਰਾਪੰਪ੍ਰ)
“A person who has forsaken the fear of death and is always ready to embrace martyrdom is called a Nihang.”

Nihang Singhs are unattached to worldly materials. They wear blue clothes and tie a turban that is a foot thigh with a “dumala” on top of it. They always keep several weapons like chakar, khanda etc. on them.

The order of the Nihangs are like the “Boy Scouts” of Sikh Panth, which was established by Guru Gobind Singh Ji. The Nihangs are the vanguards of the Sikh nation, whose vocation in life is to be warriors, protect the Gurdwaras and be on the forefront of battles. Though there is no concrete account of how the Nihangs came into being, it is told by many Singhs that one day the three Sahibzaadey (princes of Guru Gobind Singh Ji) were practicing their battle skills, and the youngest of them all Baba Fateh Singh Ji also wanted to participate with his brothers. The other brothers replied: “At the moment you are too small.”

Baba Fateh Singhji felt so let down that he went inside the palace and tied a dastaar (turban) as tall as one hand. He put on a blue dress. Placing a Chakar (round disc carried on a belt or worn on the turban) on himself, he adorned himself with a small Khanda. Over his dastaar he wrapped a ‘dumalla' and held in his hand a spear, and to complete his warrior's wore his Kirpaan. He then went to where his brothers were playing and said, “Now I don't look small.”

Observing him looking so handsome and beautiful, Guru Ji said: “From this dress the Nihangs will be formed.” For this reason up to this day Nihang Singhs are called ‘Guru Gobind Singh Ji's Laddleeaa Faujaa(n) (Beloved Army)'. There a few a myths that suppose that Guru Gobind Singh Ji was impressed by Bhai Maha Singh's dress, character and fighting skills and said, “You will have your own Panth”. However, this makes no sense. Would Guru Gobind Singh Ji want his Sikhs to follow the Guru's Panth and path or follow the Panth and path of individual Sikhs? Therefore, logically, these myths can be dismissed.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji said that the Nihangs will be generous, and strictly adhere to Dharma. When the sword is wielded, it will give out sparks like fireworks. Fighting in the battlefield in this way it will seem like a crocodile is coming out of the sea:

ਜਨੁਕ ਲਹਿਰ ਦਰਯਾਵ ਤੇ
ਨਿਕਸਿਯੋ ਬਡੋ ਨਿਹੰਗ ।
ਧਰਮ ਕੇ ਸੁ ਧੋਲ ਧਾਮ, ਧਰਿਤਾ ਕੇ ਧਰਾਧਰ,
ਧਾਰਾ ਧਰ ਮੌਦ ਸ਼ੌ ਵਿਨੋਦ ਬਰਤਸ ਹੈ । (ਚਰਿਤ੍ਰ 297)

The Nihang Singhs were the image of spotless character:

‘ਬੂਹਾ ਖੋਲ੍ਹ ਦੇ ਨਿਸੰਗ,
ਆਏ ਨੀ ਨਿਹੰਗ ॥'
“Open the door, do not be afraid,
a Nihang has come your house.”

They used to lead such an intrepid and unpredictable lifestyle that even their family did not know of their whereabouts. While riding or fighting they always uttered “Akaal, Akaal”. That is why they also become known as “Akaalis”. Their language (the distinct language of the Khalsa) indicated their positive (Chardikala) attitude. For example:

  • To die (Marnaa) – Charhaaee karnaa
  • Sickness (Beemaaree) – Dharam Raaj di dhee seva kar rehee hai (literal meaning is ‘daughter of the angel of death')
  • Punishment to a guilty (Kukarmee nu sazaa milann) – Shaheedi maar
  • Chickpeas (Sholay) – Badaam
  • Salt (Loon) – Sarab rass
  • A little (Thoree) – Sawaayaa (literal meaning is ‘one and a quarter')
  • When there is nothing/ run out (Kujh Naa hon) – Mast
  • Grass (Ghaah) – Haraa pallaa
  • Shanty (Tuttee hoyee chhann) – Sheesh Mahal (literal meaning is a ‘glass palace')
  • Calamity (Museebat) – Swarag (literal meaning ‘heaven')
  • Worn out scarf (Godrree) – Hazaar mekhee
  • Coarse grain (Mottaa Ann) – Gurmukhi Parshaad
  • Rupees – Chhillar (literal meaning is ‘bark of a tree')
  • Someone loose on Sikh conduct (Rehat vich Dhiley) – Dabrroo Ghusrooh
  • One (Ek) – Savaa lakh (literal meaning is ‘one hundred twenty five thousand')
  • Sleep (Neend) – Dharam Raaj di dhee
  • Oneself – Fauj(literal meaning is ‘army')

By merely wearing a blue chola (dress) and learning Shastar Vidhiya (the art of Sikh weaponry) does not make one a Nihang. Unfortunately, in recent years, many people who don't follow the Khalsa rehat (way of life) strictly and lack good moral characters have brought shame to the ‘Nihang's by falsely claiming to be Nihangs or by simply associating themselves to the Nihang Singhs. In particular, in the UK, a group of young Sikhs call themselves Nihangs on the basis that they look the part and know how to swing a Kirpaan, however upon closer inspection, they do not have the strict Rehat (disciplined way of life), Naam abhiyaas, knowledge, and Jeevan (spiritual life) of true Nihangs.

A number of modern Nihang Singhs observe some rituals and practices, which are contrary to Gurmat, for example the consumption of marijuana (‘bhang'). These customs and 'traditions' crept in to Nihangs during the period when the Mahants (Hindu caretakers) managed and maintained our Gurdwaras in 18 th – early 20 th century. During this period the Sikh religion was distorted and many non-Sikh practices infiltrated into the Sikh Panth. Those who follow these anti-gurmat practices claim that they are ‘old traditions' (Puraatan Maryada) from the Guru's time, however Gurbani sheds true light on whether these practices and observances are Gurmat (according to the guru's teachings) or Manmat (self-willed). Reading and understanding Gurbani it becomes apparent that some distortions have entered the traditions of the Nihangs and the wider Sikh community.

‘Bhang' or ‘Sukhnidhaan', which is marijuana (cannabis) used by large number of Nihangs nowadays is often justified through various means such as the quoting of tales and stories and the claiming these to be 'early traditions'. However, our Guru is eternal and with us forever. Why do we need to refer to stories and justifying traditions by claiming they are ‘old traditions' passed down when we have Guru Granth Sahib Ji with us to tell us what is in accordance to Gurmat. Gurbani clearly condemns the consumption of marijuana. Furthermore, medical studies bear out that consumption of marijuana and cannabis on regular basis leads to schizophrenia, and mental problems such as memory loss. The sad fact is that nowadays if you go to India you can observe some Sikhs claiming to be Nihangs, who drink ‘Bhang' have become mentally unstable.

ਅਮਲੁ ਗਲੋਲਾ ਕੂੜ ਕਾ ਦਿਤਾ ਦੇਵਣਹਾਰਿ ॥ ਮਤੀ ਮਰਣੁ ਵਿਸਾਰਿਆ ਖੁਸੀ ਕੀਤੀ ਦਿਨ ਚਾਰਿ ॥ ਸਚੁ ਮਿਲਿਆ ਤਿਨ ਸੋਫੀਆ ਰਾਖਣ ਕਉ ਦਰਵਾਰੁ ॥1॥

“The Great Giver has given the intoxicating drug of falsehood. The people are intoxicated; they have forgotten death, and they have fun for a few days. Those who do not use intoxicants are true ; they dwell in the Court of Waheguru. ||1||” (Ang 15, SGGS)

'Janamsakhi Bhai Bala' states that Babar heard Guru Nanak Dev Ji sing the shabad:

ਖੁਰਾਸਾਨ ਖਸਮਾਨਾ ਕੀਆ ਹਿੰਦੁਸਤਾਨੁ ਡਰਾਇਆ ॥

“Having attacked Khuraasaan, Babar terrified Hindustan …” (Ang 360, SGGS)

Hearing this shabad, Babar called Guru Ji and asked him to sing it again. Guru Ji sang it again. Babar said, "Friends, he is a nice 'Fakeer' (Holy man)." Then, he offered 'Bhang' to Guru Ji and said, "O Saint, eat the 'Bhang'."

However, Guru Ji replied, "Meer Ji, I have eaten the Bhang, whose stimulation never ends". Babar asked, "Which is the Bhang, whose stimulation never ends?"

Guru Ji asked Baba Mardaana Ji to play on 'Rabaab'. Guru Ji recited this shabad: -

ਤਿਲੰਗ ਮਹਲਾ 1 ਘਰੁ 2 ੴ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ ॥ ਭਉ ਤੇਰਾ ਭਾਂਗ ਖਲੜੀ ਮੇਰਾ ਚੀਤੁ ॥ ਮੈ ਦੇਵਾਨਾ ਭਇਆ ਅਤੀਤੁ ॥ ਕਰ ਕਾਸਾ ਦਰਸਨ ਕੀ ਭੂਖ ॥ ਮੈ ਦਰਿ ਮਾਗਉ ਨੀਤਾ ਨੀਤ ॥1॥ ਤਉ ਦਰਸਨ ਕੀ ਕਰਉ ਸਮਾਇ ॥ ਮੈ ਦਰਿ ਮਾਗਤੁ ਭੀਖਿਆ ਪਾਇ ॥1॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ ਕੇਸਰਿ ਕੁਸਮ ਮਿਰਗਮੈ ਹਰਣਾ ਸਰਬ ਸਰੀਰੀ ਚੜ੍‍ਣਾ ॥ ਚੰਦਨ ਭਗਤਾ ਜੋਤਿ ਇਨੇਹੀ ਸਰਬੇ ਪਰਮਲੁ ਕਰਣਾ ॥2॥
ਘਿਅ ਪਟ ਭਾਂਡਾ ਕਹੈ ਨ ਕੋਇ ॥ ਐਸਾ ਭਗਤੁ ਵਰਨ ਮਹਿ ਹੋਇ ॥ ਤੇਰੈ ਨਾਮਿ ਨਿਵੇ ਰਹੇ ਲਿਵ ਲਾਇ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਤਿਨ ਦਰਿ ਭੀਖਿਆ ਪਾਇ ॥3॥1॥2॥

“Tilang, First Mehl, Second House: One Universal Creator God. By The Grace Of The True Guru: The Fear of You, O Lord Waheguru, is my marijuana (cannabis); my consciousness is the pouch, which holds it. I have become an intoxicated hermit. My hands are my begging bowl; I am so hungry for the blessed vision of Your Darshan. I beg at Your Door, day after day. ||1|| I long for the blessed vision of Your Darshan. I am a beggar at Your Door. Please bless me with Your charity. ||1||Pause|| Saffron, flowers, musk oil and gold embellish the bodies of all. The Lord's devotees are like sandalwood, which imparts its fragrance to everyone. ||2|| No one says that ghee or silk are polluted. Such is the Lord's devotee, no matter what his social status is. Those who bow in reverence to the Naam, the Name of Waheguru, remain absorbed in Your Love. Nanak begs for charity at their door. ||3||1||2||” (Ang 721, SGGS)

Guru Ji clearly says that ‘ Bau qyrw BWg' (Bhau Tera Bhaang), meaning 'The Fear of You, Waheguru, is my marijuana (cannabis)'. Thus, Waheguru's Fear is the true 'Bhang' for a Sikh. Reading this holy shabad, how can anyone say that Guru Ji accepted ‘Bhang' and that he has not condemned it? If Guru Ji was pleased when Babar offered 'Bhang' to him, why did Guru Sahib not drink it? 'Janam saakhi Bhai Bala' does not state that Guru Ji drank 'Bhang', contrary to what some people claim in pursuit of defending their manmat practices.

Gurbaani also tells us:

ਕਬੀਰ ਭਾਂਗ ਮਾਛੁਲੀ ਸੁਰਾ ਪਾਨਿ ਜੋ ਜੋ ਪ੍ਰਾਨੀ ਖਾਂਹਿ ॥ ਤੀਰਥ ਬਰਤ ਨੇਮ ਕੀਏ ਤੇ ਸਭੈ ਰਸਾਤਲਿ ਜਾਂਹਿ ॥233॥
“O Kabeer! If people after ‘speaking with the Holy', go on pilgrimages, perform fasts and practice rituals etc, being intoxicated by sharaab (alcohol), also consuming marijuana and fish, performing immoral deeds, those persons' pilgrimages, fasts and rituals are totally useless. ||233||” (Ang 1377, SGGS)

Bhai Kahn Singh Ji beautifully describes the true character of an Akali as someone who associates themselves to Akal (the Immortal). This passage in particular is used relating to Nihang Singhs in the Gur Shabd Ratnaakar Mahaan Kosh (1931) :

ਵਾਹਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕਾ ਖ਼ਾਲਸਾ .
ਕਮਲ ਜਯੋਂ ਮਾਯਾ ਜਲ ਵਿੱਚ ਹੈ ਅਲੇਪ ਸਦਾ

ਸਭ ਦਾ ਸਨੇਜੀ ਚਾਲ ਸਭ ਤੋਂ ਨਿਰਾਲੀ ਹੈਂ,
ਕਰਕੇ ਕਮਾਈ ਖਾਵੇ ਮੰਗਣਾ ਹਰਾਮ ਜਾਣੇ

ਭਾਣੇ ਵਿੱਚ ਵਿਪਦਾ ਨੂੰ ਮੰਨੇ ਖੁਸ਼ਹਾਲੀ ਹੈਂ,

ਸ੍ਵਾਰਥ ਤੋਂ ਬਿਨਾ ਗੁਰੁਦ੍ਵਾਰਿਆਂ ਦਾ ਚੌਕੀਦਾਰ

ਧਰਮ ਦੇ ਜੰਗ ਲਈ ਚੜ੍ਹੇ ਮੁਖ ਲਾਲੀ ਹੈਂ,

ਫੂਜੇ ਨਾ ਅਕਾਲ ਬਿਨਾ ਹੋਰ ਕਈ ਦੇਵੀ ਦੇਵ

ਸਿੱਖ ਦਸ਼ਮੇਸ਼ ਦਾ ਸੋ ਕਹੀਏ ‘ਅਕਾਲੀ' ਹੈਂ .

”The Khalsa belongs to Vaheguru.
He who loves all and whose ways are distinct from all,
He who eats only that which he earns and considers begging a sin,
He who in difficult times has faith in True Guru and remains happy,
He who guards the Sikh temples without a desire for material gain,
He who is always eager to fight a just and righteous war,
He who worships only the Timeless one and not gods or goddesses,
Know such a Sikh of the tenth Guru as an Akali.”

In summary it can be concluded that Nihangs are the official army of the Sikh Panth, who are trained in Shastar Vidiya and live a life dedicated to serving the Sikh Panth through their battle skills. They are the Boy Scouts of the Sikhs, where there is a progression from young Nihangs (Tarna Dal) to older Nihangs (Buddha Dal). They were blessed by Guru Gobind Singh Ji to remain distinct and be fearless warriors, like an official unpaid army without the desire of material gain.

The true Nihang Singhs who observe the Sikh Rehat Maryada (Sikh way of life) and keep a high moral character and serve to protect the Gurdwaras and the Sikh community should be given respect and acknowledged as the ‘Guru's laddleeaa faujaan(n)' (the Guru's Beloved army). However, we should also be wary not to confuse Nihang Singhs for “Nangs”, impostors, who dress in blue attire, practice Shastar Vidiya (Sikh weaponry), follow ‘Sanatan mat' (ancient Hindu traditions and belief) and have little or no respect for living the Sikh Rehat and maintaining a high moral character. In particular, in the UK, the small group of people claiming to be ‘Nihang Singhs' are teaching young Sikhs their own version of Sikh history and philosophy which is far from Gurbani's teachings, have a lax approach to Sikh Rehat and justify using drugs, alcohol and other such things. Many of these “Nangs” are using the university scene and Sikh camps to spread their distorted version of Sikhi and confuse young Sikhs. Let us be aware of the distinction between a true Nihang and a “Nang” (fake Nihang Singh).


• Principal Satbir Singh – ‘Sau Suwal' (Panjabi)

• Dr. Hakam Singh's translation & commentary of Principal Satbir Singh work – ‘Sau Suwal – One Hundred Questions' (English)

• Bhai Kahn Singh – ‘ the Gur Shabd Ratnaakar Mahaan Kosh' (Panjabi)

Gurmukh Singh can be reached at gurmukh.singh@panthic.org.

(It really is sad what i happening to some youth in the U.K. They have no knowledge of Sikhi and then they meet these 'nangs' and very quickly they start listening to their hindu/corrupt version of Sikhism. The answers are in our Guru Jee, but we dont have the basic knowledge to read or even the 'want' to get translations. To feed primal urges they twist Gurbani and bring shame on the Gurus Saroop (Image). Really disheartening.)

(For mp3 version, in Blues Style click the above link)
By Livtar Singh Khalsa

Many speak of courage. Speaking cannot give it.
It's in the face of death that we must live it.
When things are down and darkest, that's when we stand tallest.
Until the last star falls, we won't give an inch at all!

Stand as the Khalsa, strong as steel, steady as stone.
Give our lives to God and Guru, mind and soul, breath and bone.

Guru Arjun gave His Life, to stand for what was right.
He was burned and tortured, five long days and nights.
He could have stopped it any time, just by giving in.
His Strength a solid wall, He never gave an inch at all!

Sons of the Khalsa, remember those who died.
Stood their ground until their last breath, so we who live now, might live free lives.

A princess is not royal by her birth or blood inside.
But if her family's home is Anandpur Sahib,
She'll walk with such a grace and strength the world will bow in awe.
Until the mountains fall, she'll never give an inch at all!

Daughters of the Khalsa, in your strength our future lies.
Give our children fearless minds, to see the world through the Guru's Eyes.

Baisakhi we were thousands, but only five had the courage for dying.
Then one brave man, one flashing sword, turned us all to lions.
And now we live His Legacy, to die before we fall.
And like the five who answered the call, we can't turn back at all.

Stand as the Khalsa, strong as steel, steady as stone.
Give our lives to God and Guru, mind and soul, breath and bone.

The Tenth Guru gave even His Sons, to give the Khalsa life.
His Words stand like mountains, against the winds of time,
That Khalsa will rule the world, all will be safe in its fold.
But if the Khalsa falls, there won't be a world at all!

Stand as the Khalsa, strong as steel, steady as stone.
Give our lives to God and Guru, mind and soul, breath and bone.

Many speak of courage. Speaking cannot give it.
It's in the face of death that we must live it.
When things are down and darkest, that's when we stand tallest.
Until the last star falls, we won't give an inch at all!

Stand as the Khalsa, strong as steel, steady as stone.
Gives our lives to God and Guru, mind and soul, breath and bone.

Sons of the Khalsa, remember those who died.
Stood their ground until their last breath, so we who live now, might live free lives.

Daughters of the Khalsa, in your strength our future lies.
Give our children fearless minds, to see the world through the Guru's Eyes.

Stand as the Khalsa, strong as steel, steady as stone.
Give our lives to God and Guru, mind and soul, breath and bone.

Mind and soul are His alone.

If Guru Gobind Singh Ji came to My Room

If Guru Ji came to my room to spend a day or two.
If He came unexpectedly, I wonder what I will do?
Oh, I know, I will give my nicest spot to such an honored guest
And all the food I'd serve to Him would be the very best
And I would keep assuring Him I'm glad to have Him there
That serving Him in my room is joy beyond compare

But-when I see Him coming, would I meet him at the door?
With arms out stretched in welcome to my heavenly visitor?
Or would I have to change my clothes before I let Him in?
Or hide some magazines and put the gutka where it should have been?
Would I then switch off the radio and hope he hadn't heard?
And I wish I hadn't uttered the last loud hasty word?

Would I hide my worldly music and put some Amrit Kirtan out?
Could I let Guru Ji walk right in, or would I rush about?
And I wonder-if Guru Ji spent a day or two with me,
Would I go right on doing the things I always do?
Would I go right on saying the things I always say?
Would life for me continue as it does from day to day?
Would my daily conversation keep its usual pace?
And would I find it hard, each meal to say a table grace?
Would I sing the songs I always sing, and read the books I read?
And let Him know the things on which my mind and spirit feed?
Would I take Guru Ji with me everywhere I plan to go?
Or would I maybe change my plans for just a day or so?

Would I be glad to have Him meet my very closest friends?
Or would I hope they'd stay away until His visit ends?
Would I be glad to have Him stay forever on and on?
Or would I sigh with great relief when He at last was gone?
It might be interesting to know the things that I would do
If Guru Ji in person came to spend some time with me!

( Makes you really think about our current routines - vaheguru..)
The most important thing to do is not just read these types of things, hanging our heads in shame or nodding when something applies to us. The key is to make changes.

Without action, there is nothing.
Turban Tying

The Turban makes the Sikh, it is our uniform.

nwpwk pwku kir hdUir hdIsw swbq sUriq dsqwr isrw ]12]
naapaak paak kar hadhoor hadheesaa saabath soorath dhasathaar siraa ||12||
Purify what is impure, and let the Lord's Presence be your religious tradition. Let your total awareness be the turban on your head. ||12||

Guru Arjan Dev Ji , Raag Maaroo , Siri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Limb 1084

Once we have taken Amrit, giving our head to the Guru we agree to keep our hair.
Therefore we automatically have to start wearing a dastaar/turban to keep our hair clean, and in order.

The style doesnt really matter, aslong as it is of a good length. In the past, a rule of the thumb was that the turban should be long enough to cover the body if clothes were removed. So around 3/4 metres is a minimum.

Below are some links to turban tying videos.
Dumalla's are my favourite because they are the most practical. They are the hardest to remove, most least likely to fall off and are unique to the sikh faith in style and decoration. (I believe)
Du-Malla (Two Turbans)
The moguls did not like Sikhs wearing turbans, as this was a sign of royalty etc. For this reason, they said only Muslims could wear turbans. In response to this, Guru Ji ordered Sikhs to wear two turbans just to show the Moguls they had no fear of them. For this reason, a tradition of two turbans were started. In this way, the orange bit would be a smaller turban that is worn underneath the one on top."

EktaOne.Com Turban Tying Guide

In the above link there is an oppurtunity to see two other types of Dastaar/Turban.
The Golh (Round) Turban
and the Nokh Turban (Samosa), commonly worn by most men in todays society.

There is also a link to the Patka, which is basically a one piece cloth used to cover the head. Commonly worn by small children and women.

Turbans should be worn by men and women, for we are equal afterall. Infact women wearing turbans, when asked why they wear one usually reply "It shows that I am equal to a man, in our society". Yet many of my sisters/mothers do not, it would really be nice to see more women wearing Guru Ji's Dastaar.

Another brilliant link to turban tying, can be found at:
Mata Bhaag Kaur.org a website created by some sisters in America/Canada. There is alot of information about the dastaar in audio form while the turban is being tied, well worth listening to.

mY gur imil auc dumwlVw ]
mai gur mil ouch dhumaalarraa ||
I met with the Guru, and I have tied a tall, plumed turban.

Guru Arjan Dev Ji , Siree Raag
Siri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, Limb 74

Tying a dastaar is essential for us as Sikhs, one of the main reasons no one knows who are are is because we have no identity.

If we cut our hair, and call ourselves Sikhs - is there anyone on this earth who isnt Sikh?