Education

Best Wishes: How shall we Celebrate First Prakash Utsav Day of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji?

Gur Fateh and Best Wishes:
In order to celebrate First Prakash Utsav Day of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji this year, a spokesperson of the Punjab Chief Minister’s Office said that all the offices of Punjab government, boards, corporations and educational institutions would remain closed on the occasion on September 10. – Tribune News Service Chandigarh, September 8.
Big question:
Should it be celebrated as a holiday and go fishing so to speak, as is normally done on other national holidays? Or in view of the ongoing in Punjab shall we find more innovative ways to unite, educate and organize ourselves spreading awareness, reaching out all corners of the society? In view of the ignorance and apathy demonstrated by our community at home for the past three years currently getting at each other’s throat, making a choice may not be so difficult.

The biggest irony is that Sikh Scripture with an universal message for all mankind is so grossly misunderstood and perhaps misinterpreted back home, that a certain section of its own people tore its pages and strewed them in ignorance. The bewildered other section is up in arms. The authorities on the other hand appear to behave no better. They appear sitting on the fence either playing politics of ignorance or simply scared stiff.

Guru Granth Sahib

Apart from all else, these Scriptures include Bhagat Kabir’s baani which says, “ ਕਬੀਰ ਜਿਹ ਦਰਿ ਆਵਤ ਜਾਤਿਅਹੁ ਹਟਕੈ ਨਾਹੀ ਕੋਇ ॥ ਸੋ ਦਰੁ ਕੈਸੇ ਛੋਡੀਐ ਜੋ ਦਰੁ ਐਸਾ ਹੋਇ ॥੬੬॥ {ਪੰਨਾ 1367}.” One doesn’t need prizes to judge, had the miscreants who first stole the Scripture from a Gudwara and then did this sacrilege act by tearing it down would not have done it, had they known and understood what contained therein for themselves.

I offer no solutions but I did write a blog and posted September 6,” PUNJAB DECIDES; WORLD WATCHES” on my face book adding what the non-Sikh renowned people said about the Sikh Scripture contained in Sri Guru Granth Sahib. In case you missed it, here is the repost:
PUNJAB DECIDES; WORLD WATCHES
Na Ko Bairi Nahi Begana ਨਾ ਕੋ ਬੈਰੀ ਨਾਹੀ ਬੇਗਾਨਾ . . .

Arnold J. Toynbee

This is what the non-Sikh Renowned People also Said about Sri Guru Granth Sahib:
Dalai Lama, “Guru Granth Sahib enshrines the message of universal brotherhood and good of all mankind.”

From Max Arthur Macauliffe to Miss Pearl S Buck, a Noble laureate to Arnold Toynbee said the same thing. Toynbee, a British historian whose twelve-volume analysis of the rise and fall of civilizations, A study of History 1934-1961, is a synthesis of world history, a meta history based on universal rhythms of rise, flowering and decline from a global perspective says this:
“Mankind’s religious future may be obscure; yet one thing can be foreseen. The living higher religions are going to influence each other more than ever before, in the days of increasing communications between all parts of the world and branches of human race. In this coming religious debate, the Sikh Religion and its scripture, the Guru Granth, will have something of special value to say to the rest of the world.”

On my part, I recently attended the 7th Annual Conference celebrating First Prakash Utsav of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji at Sikh Gudwara San Jose, California.
Organized by the Sikh Gurdwara San Jose, Charhdi Kalaa Foundation and Sikh Net,

Sarah Caldwell

the Conference took place on Saturday August 19, 2018.

 

A dozen presentations were made that included unique Kirtan by children Jathas, individual speeches by youth as well as 9 presentations by various scholars on the subject. With short breaks, the conference was divided in four sessions. Invited by the organizers, I had the honor of being Chairperson moderating the 2nd Session, in which three important presentations were made namely:

1. ‘Sikh and Punjabi Program started at University of California Santa Cruz’
(UCSC) in 2011- presentation by Sarah Caldwell.
2. ‘Overcoming Haumai’ – Dr. Inder Mohan Singh, Chairman Chardi Kalaa
Foundation.
3. ‘I See God Inside of Everyone’ – S. Gurumustuk Singh Creator SikhNet.com website in 1995.
The conference began at 8 A.M with Ardaas and Kirtan by children Jathas and concluded at 9 P.M after questions and answers. The conference did not solve any major problems but was certainly a step in continuation to keep doing the good work they have been doing for the past 7 years.

Do you have any ideas how best to do something more innovative; first to better understand Sikhi ourselves, help younger generation and spread awareness among fellow Americans as a Diasporic Sikh? As usual please leave a comment on my face book wall or on my website if you like!

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