Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Khalsa Camp, UK

Time has flown by and now summer is just around the corner. Summer holidays means a summer of camps! Last year was my first year at Khalsa Camp. I was slightly apprehensive about going as I didn't know what to expect at the camp. However, I applied and ended up going. The atmosphere at Khalsa Camp was amazing. Everyone was so friendly, warm and welcoming. The amount of pyaar (love) and humility shown definitely moved my heart, and speaking to others who attended the camp (people with cut hair, non-Amritdharis and Amritdharis) - they felt this from the camp sevadaars and the whole camp as well.

So, what to expect at Khalsa Camp? I was pleasantly surprised that everyone got an ensuite room to sleep. This was helpful to go to sleep and get rest without being disturbed! Otherwise camp can be very tiring.

Everyone wakes up before 4am and has to be inside the Guru's Darbaar for 4am sharp for Amrit-Velaa. Everyone I have to spoken to who has been to Khalsa Camp will say that the highlight of Khalsa Camp is the AMRIT-VELA (early morning) Simran and Nitnem together with the Sangat. It was very powerful and you can feel the power and energy of Naam in the environment. 4am to 5am is Naam Simran, 5 am to 6am is Nitnem (daily prayers) followed by Ardaas and Hukamnama.

6am to 8am is SNOOZE TIME. lol. It was good to get time to rest after Nitnem so that one feels fresh and awake for the rest of the day. 8am to 9am was breakfast.

From 9am to 1pm there were two talks with discussions and afterwards campers had the option of choosing a workshop on the subject of their choice. I would describe the talks as very deep, thought-provoking and spiritual relating to the individual and life. It was nice to see a mixture of seriousness and reflection as well as comedy, humour and fun in the talks.

Lunch was from 1pm to 2pm. This followed by activities up to 5pm. The activities ranged from Dastaar (turban) tying class, yoga exercise, netball, football, go-karting, horse-riding and more. Go-karting was funny! Well I shouldn't say that - it was dangerous and PAINFUL for some. No names mentioned, some Singhs from London bashed their cars into one another - didn't look too good! Although I'm not a brilliant driver, with Guru Sahib's Kirpaa I didn't crash into anybody or anything!

5pm to 6pm was relax and refresh time. 6pm sharp everyone used to be in the Guru's Darbaar. There would be Keertan by campers followed by Rehraas Sahib, Ardaas and Hukamnama.

One day everyone went to the sea-side! It was a nice day out. Some people had water fights in the sea, others played volleyball and some just walked on the sandy beach and soaked up the nice weather.

On that day Keertan was done on the beach. It was mind blowing. There was a particular young Keertani from India who sang amazingly. Whenever there was Keertan, everyone sang along and you can feel that everyone was immersed in the Sangat and Shabad. It was like heaven on earth.

Langar was served at 7pm. The Langar was Chardikalaa! Like Boss Sikhi Camp, the cakes and other nice treats were great! Summer time always means putting on a few extra pounds for me with all camps having chardikalaa langar :)

8pm to 9pm there were optional discussions that took place in small groups. Usually at the end of day a lot of campers had questions in their mind or wanted answers about something. This was a good opportunity for those people to go along and share their thoughts or even just listen to what others have to say and learn from it. The evening was open to campers. Most campers were in bed by 10pm ready to wake up in the morning!

I am glad I attended Khalsa Camp. You have to experience it yourself to know the feeling. I am looking forward to Khalsa Camp 2007.

Mark your calendar for Saturday 18th to Thursday 23rd August to participate in the camp. For more information and to apply, check out www.KhalsaCamp.com

Next post on camps will be about my experience at Boss Sikhi Camp.


Anonymous said...

hi Bhaji camp looks great. I look forward to this year's camp and meeting you.

Anonymous said...

OMVV im sooooo pumped for thee cammmppp :D:D:D:D

tooo llong to waitt

Ravjeet Singh said...

Khalsa camp was awesome experience. Tapoban Gursikh, Bhai Nashater Singh, it was awesome!

Ravjeet Singh said...


Young Singh London said...

waheguru ji ka khalsa waheguru ji ki fateh!
Im a 16 y/o singh, with kesh and a damalla, i have been thinking of going to khalsa camp this year, however I hardly know any gursikhs my age, i know one or two older than me just to say fateh to really, if i were to go this year i wouldnt really know anybody, im not sure how exactly that would work out as i find it quite hard to start talking with people, would you have any advice to give on this level?

Manvir Singh Khalsa said...

Bhaaji, you've asked a good question. I am sure there are others who haven't been to camps who before probably feel the same way! I felt the same way when I first went to camp.

When going somewhere for the first time, whether it be school, college, university, new job or a camp, one's mind thinks "I don't know anyone!... How do I make friends?"

Firstly, nothing to worry about. Always do Ardaas and have faith in Waheguru. Remember Waheguru is always with you and be confident. Smile and relax. Wherever your pick up point is, you will get to know people on the coach. You will obviously sit next to someone as well on the coach.

Always say Guru's Fateh to everyone . You can start a conversation by saying your name and asking the other person their name. Ask where they are from - you might know them or see them around. Remember you in the same boat as everyone else - there are other people also who don't know anyone.

During the camp you will be in groups for activities, discussions and sports. In these small groups you will get to know one another. By the end of the week it will feel like you have known the people around you for years! In every camp you will meet new and more Sangat, which is very inspiring and uplifting!

You don't need to think too hard about it. Just relax, enjoy and have an open mind. I am sure you will come back knowing loads of people and will definitely want to come back :)

Anonymous said...

iv heard many things about khalsa camp in past, many of them being negative. Many people see khalsa camp as a predominantly akj-orientated camp, people have claimed that they try to impose their ideas on to you. Is this true bhai sahib? Also, I am not an so-called akj and do not believe in any jathebandi business-would it suit me to go? or will I become annoyed at their antics?

Manvir Singh Khalsa said...

Before I went to Khalsa Camp I was given a negative impression of the camp by some people. However, these people had not been to the camp itself. So I don't know what their views were based on.

The negative comment people portrayed the camp as strict, serious, no fun, judgemental, one perspective of Sikhi forced upon campers, non-amritdharis and those with cut hair ridiculed etc.... HOWEVER, having experienced the camp, it was clear that it was the total OPPOSITE!

My own personal experience of the camp is that everyone was friendly and welcoming. The camp doesn't label people as "AKJ", "non-AKJ" etc. There were campers from various backgrounds and thinking. None of the campers I spoke to felt that any Jatha (group) was forced upon them.

The talks were based on Gurbani, and if speakers experienced a personal opinion or personal interpretation - then they made that clear. I felt that the speakers didn't impose their views on others. On the contrary the I found the speakers as very humble and non-judgemental.

Controversial or negative topics (which divide opinions) were avoided in the camp and the organisers promoted the Panthic Sikh Rehit Maryada issued by Sri Akaal Takht Sahib - which was refreshing to see.

I was glad that I went along to the camp and experienced it for myself and enjoyed it thoroughly.

All I can say is come to the camp and experience it for yourself :)

Guru Raakhaa

Anonymous said...

bring khalsa kamp to kanadaaa!

Anonymous said...

i went to khalsa camp the year before last, for me it was amazing, i'm not AKJ and i found it life changing.

My only suggestion is, it would be nice to have non-AKJ speakers/panelist, this way this notion of it being an AKJ camp will be lost

Again i didn't go last year so maybe thats changed, but def a very good camp...

BTW i had jokes there as well :-)

Anonymous said...

A sikh is a sikh. I dnt get this whole akj thing. Its just puts ppl off going to camps.

Anonymous said...

The camp name is "KHALSA camp".... its pretty clear that everyone is welcome and that the camp is about the KHALSA way of life NOT a group or jatha!!

it seem's ppl who don't want others to experience khalsa camp keep usually bring up group or jatha labels to divide ppl and scar them.

Anonymous said...

bare jokesssss..... its so chilled :D

Go Carting. Horse riding!

Anonymous said...

fateh, i can only go 2 1 camp this year

sikhi or khalsa, wat do u recommend veerjee

Manvir Singh Khalsa said...

Both Boss Sikhi Camp and Khalsa Camp are excellent camps for learning and experiencing Sikhi, and meeting chardikalaa Sangat.

If you can only go to one camp this year, then I would say whichever camp you decide to go to this year, go to the other camp the year after.

Dates for both camps:
Khalsa Camp - Sat 18th Aug to Thurs 23rd Aug 2007

Sikhi Camp - Sun 26th Aug to Sat 1st Aug 2007

Anonymous said...

go khalsa camp. Sikhi camp was borring last year. The speakers where rubbish only 2 good ones.

khalsa camp was out of this world. Speakers, camp, everything was top. Which camp can will give you your own shower??

at some camps you'll be lucky to get a space on teh floor!!! LOOLL

Young Singh London said...

Thanks for the advice manvir singh ji veerji, that made me feel good :)

Anonymous said...

dis year sikhi camp shud be better than last year... i am sure dis year they will try and get gud speakers and have a wide rang of topics relevant to spirituality and modern day living. both these camps r gud for sangat and keertan dat promote readin bani and keepin rehit!

Anonymous said...

sikhi camp is wicked. the best camps i been to

dhad sarangi said...

wot camp is dhadi master goin dis summer???

gurdeep sandhu said...

i heard that dhadhi masterr has finished uni and will be attending khalsaa camp. shud be charhdikala!!!cant wait to have bhai sahib's darshan :)

Anonymous said...

khalsa camp rocks!

the dvd proves it :D!!!!!!!

sarbat said...

gurfateh singhoo !!
singho plzz check ur manvir.khalsa@gmail.com ...mail id ...i hve some quaries abt the camp so i mailed u ..jus check ur mail & reply me back soon
gurfateh !!

sarbat said...

gurfateh singhoo !!
singho plzz check ur manvir.khalsa@gmail.com ...mail id ...i hve some quaries abt the camp so i mailed u ..jus check ur mail & reply me back soon
gurfateh !!

SUKHDEV said...

waheguru ji ka khalsa..waheguru ji ki fateh ...veer jii i jus hve some quaries abt. registering myself to the sikhi camp that i m from india ,so the visa sponser or any help for visa will be given by khalsa camp organisers or not ...bcoz i m paying 85 pound so jus wanna confirm that will it be refundable if some visa problem occured..& veer ji plzzz reply me on my mail id that is BABBARSUKHDEV@GMAIL.COM ....veer ji as its my first time that i m taking part in some camp ...soo plzz reply soon jee.....
gurfateh jee