Thursday, January 24, 2008

NASA & Gurbani



I came across this audio on DiscoverSikhi.com of vichaar by Bhai Bhagwan Singh Johal, a panthik Sikh scholar and Kathaavachik. If you can understand Panjabi then please listen to the audio below:


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In short, Bhai Bhagwan Singh's talk is the affects of Gurbani on individuals' lives. In one example, he mentions that there have been two Panjabi sisters who have worked as Astronauts at the NASA space station in America - Kalpana Chawla and Sunita William.

Kalpana Chawla was a space shuttle mission specialist. She was the first Panjabi to travel into space. Unfortunately, she was killed on 1st February 2003 with 7 crew members in the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster. Whilst in India, Bhai Bhagwan Singh was in Uttranchal (Haryana) where he met Kalpana Chawla's father, Banarsi Lal Chawla. As you would do, Bhai Bhagwan Singh offered his condolences and shared the grief of the loss of a fellow Punjabi sister.

Kalpana's father was a Hindu, however the family have devotion (shardaa) for the House of Guru Nanak. Bhai Sahib asked Kalpana's father to share something about Kalpana's life with him. He replied that she did Nitnem (daily prayers) every morning (as well as being a vegetarian). The family were fortunate enough to have darshan (glimpse) of the late Baba Nand Singh jee in Uttaranchal. Baba jee had an affect on the family and since then they have practised Nitnem and had love for Gurbani.

"Tell more," said Bhai Bhagwan Singh. The father replied, "Kalpana also recited Japji Sahib whilst she worked, and she recited Japji Sahib in space as well." Guru Nanak Sahib Ji explains in Japji Sahib:
ਪਾਤਾਲਾ ਪਾਤਾਲ ਲਖ ਆਗਾਸਾ ਆਗਾਸ ॥
Pāṯālā pāṯāl lakẖ āgāsā āgās.
There are nether worlds beyond the nether worlds and lacs of skies over skies.

ਓੜਕ ਓੜਕ ਭਾਲਿ ਥਕੇ ਵੇਦ ਕਹਨਿ ਇਕ ਵਾਤ ॥
Oṛak oṛak bẖāl thakė vėḏ kahan ik vāṯ.
The scriptures say one thing: searching for God's limits and bounds, (without success) people have grown weary.
(Ang 5)

Not only did she read this, but she experienced this. Guru Nanak Sahib Ji was also present in space (whilst she read Japji Sahib).


Her father said that he had an opportunity to visit the NASA centre at San Jose, America (in September 2004). During his visit he was shown a volume of an English translation of Guru Granth Sahib jee kept at the NASA library. Her father was told that when scientists get tired of searching and searching the universe, when they seek inspiration and need to uplift their souls they turn to read the translations of Guru Nanak's poetry and divine-songs which magnificently describe the awe and wonder of the Universe. There is no other poetry, no other divine-song, no other Scripture, such as the Bani of Guru Nanak Sahib Ji -- Guru Granth Sahib jee.

16 comments:

Mr. Singh said...

Amazing. Us sikhs have possibly not been able to promote sikhi as much as we can/could do. Buts its great to see non sikhs showing so much love for Guru Ji

Manpreet Singh said...

Thanks Manvir I had written an article on NASA taking Guru Granth Sahib help..last year..and many people asked me to back it up with some proof..Today you have given it to me..

PART -I http://cyberspirits.blogspot.com/2007/06/nasa-taking-guru-granth-sahibs-help.html

Conqueror of the world said...

If they read the Guru Granth Sahib for inspiration surely they must read where Guruji advises that you can keep searching and searching for the limits of waheguru but you will never know his limits. He acutally says they are fools who waste there lives in trying to find the lords limit. The people at NASA must just ignore this part of Guruji.

Manvir Singh Khalsa said...

Science is "Discovery" of God's gifts, laws and wonders of creation.

I agree that Gurbani emphasises over and over again that no one can find the limit of God. Scientists cannot find the limits of God and I don't think that is their objective. The objective of a religious Scientist would be to discover new parts of the universe, new laws etc for huham knowledge and benefit.

Similarly, when Columbus or other explorers set out discovering the "world" they could not find the limits of God and nor do I think that was their objective, but they discovered new parts of the world, new creatures etc.

Bhul Chuk Maaf

Guru Raakhaa

Conqueror of the world said...

Gurfateh ji,

Good point veerji. By the way I have sent an e-mail to NASA about this, I dont think they will reply, but who knows?

Anonymous said...

Kalpana's father was clean-shaven and although a Hindu, the family have devotion (shardaa) for the House of Guru Nanak.

lol...shardaa?? Man you should be careful wit ur words. Jst coz someone does nitnem doesn't mean they have shardaa!! It's screwed up wit ppl like you jumpiong on the bandwagon like so but challoo that's life

Manvir Singh Khalsa said...

Anonymous jee - What I have written is a translation of the audio in Punjabi - benti, please listen to it if you can.

I don't know Kalpana Chawla's father. The person doing Kathaa (Bhai Bhagwan Singh) said that he had shardaa - I just wrote down what was in the audio.

Daas has taken out the "clean-shaven" part as it doesn't really add anything, considering its been mentioned he was a Hindu.

Bhul Chuk Maaf jee.

Guru Raakhaa

Sifar said...

If it is not love and devotion for Guru Nanak, then I wonder what drives millions of Hindus and other religion followers to visit Gurudwars all over India. Langar? Na... I don't think so. You can witness equal (or even more) numbers of non-sikhs visiting Gurus darbar as Sikhs.

Satwinder said...

Veerjee, Waheguru Jee Ka Khalsa Waheguru Jee Kee Fateh! Thanks a lot for sharing this post! May Guru Sahib be ang-sang!

Anonymous said...

What does it mean when Gurbani says that all the natures laws/mysteries are reviled to a Gursikh?

Anonymous said...

I think this means that those that are one with God (Gursikh) who have achieved this status through meditation on/of Naam which is best done at amrit vela. The knowledge of the laws of the universe are revealed to such a person. Revealed through your consciousness awakening.

The 'universal laws' are what scientists describe for the unknown laws (things that cannot be explained but definately exist).

Ask any scientistic do you believe in universal laws and majority will say yes. Then ask them who creates or controls these laws and you will get a blank look from most or for the 45% of them who believe in the universal creator you normally get a smile. The Gursikh should not use these laws for any personal advantage.

Out of interest did you know that the human eye can only see 4% of what is in the universe the rest is described as dark matter or dark energy. Other scientists have described these as realms.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_matter

We will never know the extent of the universe as Guru Ji tells us. Gurbani is divine and the only truth.

Please forgive me if I have said anything wrong or misinterperated anything. I am learning myself and this is just based on my limited understanding.

Anonymous said...

Hi Manvir,

I glad that you discovered Bhagwan Singh Johal. I have listened to many of his vichaars and they are very inspirational and knowlegable. I have also had the opportunity to meet him, and he such a nice truthful Gursikh.

narinder sander said...

I am humbled and speechless

narinder sander said...

I am humbled and speechless

Anonymous said...

sunita willams is not Punjabi

Anonymous said...

This is a hoax. Google it if you like. Kalpana's husband had refuted this story.

Also, SGGS does not require any validation from any organization, group or person. If you want to really gain something, start reading SGGS.