I used to have my hair cut then. Also Pardip used to be short-haired. He started to keep his Kesh before me. I remember during the Thursday programmes that Pardip Singh's hair was slightly longer than normal hairstyles. (I eventually knew why!). The weekly diwaans on Thursday lasted about 6 months or more during 1999. Eventually it stopped. I remember going to Leamington Spa Gurdwara Sahib a while later and Pardip Singh was wearing a Patka. It was nice to see him keep Kesh. During the same time I had also kept Kesh and started tying a dastaar.
We became good friends and both attended the Sikh Study Circle meetings, which happen fortnightly at the Gurdwara Sahib. Pardip Singh gradually built up his Rehat. He loves Dhadi, and is also keen on doing Sangat. It was great news to hear he took Amrit on Saturday when he rang and told me. The Boss Sikhi Camp in the summer really helped him make his decision to walk on the path of the Guru and give his head to Guru ji.
One week before taking Amrit he went to Leamington Spa Gurdwara Sahib and took a Hukamnaama to ask for Guru Ji's guidance on his desire to take Amrit and give his head to the Guru. The Hukamnama was on Ang 563 of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji in Raag Vaddhans. We must remember that Guru Granth Sahib is our living and ever-present Guru. Guru Sahib speaks to us, and the Raag indicates the mood, feels and emotions, which Guru Sahib is conveying in Shabad.
Vaddhans Raag is based on Punjabi Folk music and is set in the traditions of Ghoreea, Suhag and Alohnian. The feelings instilled by this Raag can be compared to those of a bride on the day of her wedding; she is happy and sad. Although she is going to her groom, who fills her with hope and joy, she is also sad to be leaving her family:
vaddhans M: 5
Vaddhans, Fifth Mehl:
too jaanaaeihi, taa koee jaanai.
When You allow Yourself to be known, (only) then a person knows You.
teraa deeaa naam vakhaanai. 1.
[And] we chant Your Name, which You have given to us. 1.
too achraj kudrat teree bismaa. 1. rahaao.
You are wonderful! Your creative power is amazing! 1. Pause.
tudh aape kaaran, aape karnaa.
You Yourself are the Cause of causes, You Yourself are the Creator.
hukame jamman, hukme marnaa. 2.
By Your Will, we are born, and by Your Will, we die. 2.
naam teraa man tan aadhaaree.
Your Name is the Support of my mind and body.
naanak daas bakhshees tumaaree. 3.8.
O Nanak! (Say-O Waheguru!) bless Your slave (with Your Name). 3.8.
The Raag of the Hukamnama speaks for itself. And the last line clearly gives guidance of asking the blessing. In the case the blessing of Amrit and asking for the gift of Naam from the Guru-Roop Panj-Pyaare.
Also on the same day when Pardip Singh took Amrit, two other Bhajis who came to the summer Boss Camp also took Amrit. One of the Bhajis slept in the dorm where I was sleeping. His name was 'Chan', (Charan-Kamal Singh), the other Bhaji was Mandev Singh. Chan Bhaji was clean-shaven and short-cut hair. However, on the last day of the camp Bhaji publicly stated in the sangat that he was going to maintain his kesh. It was amazing to see so much conviction and courage! Mandev Singh Bhaji kept a trimmed beard before coming to the camp where he decided to keep his beard in full glory!
Bhaji Mandev Singh who also went to Boss Sikhi Camp, just before Amrit-Sanchaar.
Bhaji Pardip Singh waiting to take Amrit before Amrit Sanchaar.
It's so inspiring and uplifting to hear how Guru Ji blesses everyone and how a person can change his Jeewan from being manmukh (slave to the mind) to Gurmukh (Guru-orientated) and living forever holding the Guru's hand.
On the day of the Amrit Sanchaar the Hukamnaama, which was taken after the Panj Pyaare gave Amrit, was in Sorath Raag on Ang 624. Sorath Raag conveys the feeling of having such a strong belief in something that you want to keep repeating the experience. In fact this feeling of certainty is so strong that you become the belief and live that belief. The atmosphere of Sorath is so powerful, that eventually even the most unresponsive listener will be attracted:
sorath mehlaa 5
Sorat'h, Fifth Mehl:
gur poorai keetee pooree.
The Perfect Guru has made me perfect (in my spiritual life).
prabh rav rehiaa bharpooree.
(I see) Waheguru totally pervading and permeating everywhere.
khem kusal bheiaa ishnaanaa.
Within me I have obtained spiritual joy and pleasure - this is the purifying bath (which I have taken in the pool of the Guru).
paarbrahm vitthu kurbaanaa. 1.
I am a sacrifice to the Supreme Lord Waheguru (who caused me to meet the Guru). 1
gur ke charan kaval ridh dhaare.
He who enshrine the lotus feet of the Guru within their heart.
bighan na laagai til kaa koee, kaaraj sagal savaare. 1. rahaao.
(In their life journey) not even the tiniest obstacle blocks their way; all their affairs are resolved by the Guru. 1. Pause.
mil saadhoo durmath khoe.
Meeting with the Guru, evil-mindedness is eradicated.
patit puneet sabh hoe.
Meeting the Guru even sinners are purified.
raamdaas sarovar naate.
Those people who bathe (spiritually) in the pool of 'Raam de Daas' (the Guru's Sangat), (those who bathe their mind in the spiritual life-giving Naam),
sabh laathe paap kamaate. 2.
all the (past) sins they have committed are washed away. 2.
gun gobind nit gaaeeai.
So sing forever the Glorious Praises of Waheguru, the Lord of the Universe;
saadhsang mil dhiaaeeai.
Joining the Saadh Sangat, the Company of the Holy, do Simran, meditate on Waheguru.
man baa(n)chhat phal paae.
The fruits of the mind's desires are obtained (from Waheguru's door)
gur pooraa ridhai dhiaae. 3.
by meditating on the Perfect Guru within the heart. 3.
gur gopaal aanandaa.
The Guru, the Lord of the World, is blissful;
jap jap jeevai parmaanandaa.
One who does Naam Simran, chants, meditating on Waheguru, the Lord of supreme bliss, obtains spiritual life.
jan naanak naam dhiaaeiaa.
Servant Nanak meditates on the Naam, the Name of Waheguru.
prabh apnaa birad rakhaaeiaa. 4.10.60.
Waheguru confirmed His (loving) innate nature. 4.10.60.
May Guru Ji keep all three Bhajis in Chardikala!!