This weekend, from Friday to Sunday, there was a Gurmat Camp held at Leamington Spa Gurdwara. As all camps held at Leamington, the camp was great and well organised by the local sevadaars. Around 80 children attended the camp. Adults also attended and participated in the camp.
On Friday, after the morning Diwaan and Hukamnama with explanation, there was a time-line workshop. There were cards with the names and dates of the Ten Guru Sahibs and also cards with pictures and short information on (1) the rulers of India during the times of the Gurus, (2) rulers and events in English history, and (3) general world history (inventions, discoveries and events). The campers were grouped up and had to make a timeline and arrange the cards in some sort of order and stick them on to a large sheet of paper as well as discuss each card.
From the exercise the children firstly learnt that the Guru Sahibs did not live thousands of years ago but lived during fairly modern world history (for example, King Henry VIII lived at the same time of Guru Amardaas Sahib jee). Secondly, the children had an opportunity to discuss the lives of Guru Sahibs and enrich their knowledge of how socially and spiritually advanced the Guru Sahibs were in comparison to the world at the time.
After completing the time-lines each group presented how they had arranged their group time-line. Each person in the group had to remember a different fact from the line and share it with the Sangat when they presented:
The session concluded with going through the whole time and discussing the history of the Guru Sahibs and what they achieved in comparison to what was happening in the world.
After lunch (chips, beans and pasta!) there was self-defence class. After eating so much Langar I was hoping that no one was sick in the self defence class in case someone was thrown around or poked in the stomach. Waheguru. It was a useful lesson for everyone and Bhaji leading the class gave some really good general safety tips which young and old should be mindful of in order to avoid trouble and protect oneself.
Bhaji Galjinder Singh showing a few self-defence moves on Bhaji Kamal Singh.
Waheguru. Looks like the Bhenji in the pink top is waving to someone :)
Waheguru. These two young boys were so cute.
Bhaji Galjinder Singh showing a move on a camper. Waheguru, it looks like Bhaji is slapping the boy! (Note: no one was harmed during the taking of this photo. lol).
Someone's looking for a fight.
Erm, I wouldn't personally recommend doing this straight after eating loads of chips, beans and pasta!
The two girls in the back look like they are trying new self-defence moves! The girl in pink looks like she is trying out the "aunty looking angry" move to scare the other girl. lol.
In the late afternoon the campers were divided up. The younger group went with Bhaji Kamal Singh to make board games on life, death and reincarnation, and the elder group had a talk by two young local bhenjis who did a nice presentation on the Journeys (Udasis) of Guru Nanak Sahib jee. Both classes enjoyed themselves and learnt lots!
Bhaji Kamal Singh and children designing a board game.
Bhenji Harpreet Kaur and Bhenji Keerat Kaur leading the class on the Udasis of Guru Nanak Sahib jee.
The Bhenjis also went through Saakhis of Guru Sahib as they explained the great Journeys.
For the closing diwaan children did Simran through Keertan followed by Ardaas and Hukamnama explained in English. All the children like doing Simran and it really inspiring to see people jumping on the Vaaja and so eager to do Simran! Afterwards people would be asking "Can we do more Simran" and "Can we do more Keertan... please?" Waheguru. So many great and blessed souls.
Dhan Hai Guru, Dhan Hai Teri Sikhee.
To be continued...