Sunday, February 01, 2015

Anti-Sikhi Parchaar (Part 4): Topic - Dietary Bibek (2 of 4)


Continued...

   
#3. "But, Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji tells us to treat everyone equally and respect everyone. So what's wrong with non-Amritdharis making Langar?"
RESPONSE: Guru Ji does say to treat with everyone with respect, however in order to keep self-discipline and remain steadfast in one's principles, Guru Ji has instructed:
ਕਬੀਰ ਸਾਕਤ ਸੰਗੁ ਨ ਕੀਜੀਐ ਦੂਰਹਿ ਜਾਈਐ ਭਾਗਿ ||
ਬਾਸਨੁ ਕਾਰੋ ਪਰਸੀਐ ਤਉ ਕਛੁ ਲਾਗੈ ਦਾਗੁ ||੧੩੧||

“Kabeer, do not associate with the faithlesss; run far away from them. If you touch a vessel stained with soot, some of the soot will stick to you.”
(Salok Bhagat Kabeer Ji, 1371)
The Panthic Sikh Rehat Maryada states:
ਸਿਰਗੁੰਮ, ਨੜੀ ਮਾਰ (ਜੋ ਸਿੱਖ ਹੋ ਕੇ ਇਹ ਕੰਮ ਕਰਨ) ਦਾ ਸੰਗ ਨਹੀਂ ਕਰਨਾ|
"You must not associate with [those that whilst being a Sikh have become] Sirgum (cut-haired person) and Narhee-maar (smokers)."
(Sikh Rehat Maryada)

It goes on to state: 
ਠ) ਤਨਖਾਹੀਏ ਇਹ ਹਨ:- 
੧. ਮੀਣੇ, ਮਸੰਦ, ਧੀਰਮੱਲੀਏ, ਰਾਮਰਾਈਏ, ਆਦਿਕ ਪੰਥ ਵਿਰੋਧੀਆਂ ਨਾਲ ਜਾਂ ਨੜੀ ਮਾਰ, ਕੁੜੀ ਮਾਰ, ਸਿਰਗੁੰਮ ਨਾਲ ਵਰਤਣ ਵਾਲਾ ਤਨਖਾਹੀਆ ਹੋ ਜਾਂਦਾ ਹੈ|
੨. ਬੇ-ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤੀਏ ਜਾਂ ਪਤਿਤ ਦਾ ਜੂਠਾ ਖਾਣ ਵਾਲਾ|
੩. ਦਾਹੜਾ ਰੰਗਣ ਵਾਲਾ|
੪. ਪੁੱਤਰ ਜਾਂ ਧੀ ਦਾ ਸਾਕ ਮੁੱਲ ਲੈ ਕੇ ਜਾਂ ਦੇ ਕੇ ਕਰਨ ਵਾਲਾ|
੫. ਕੋਈ ਨਸ਼ਾ(ਭੰਗ,ਅਫੀਮ,ਸ਼ਰਾਬ,ਪੋਸਤ,ਕੁਕੀਨ ਆਦਿ) ਵਰਤਣ ਵਾਲਾ|
੬. ਗੁਰਮਤਿ ਤੋਂ ਵਿਰੁੱਧ ਕੋਈ ਸੰਸਕਾਰ ਕਰਨ ਕਰਾਉਣ ਵਾਲਾ|
੭. ਰਹਿਤ ਵਿਚ ਕੋਈ ਭੁੱਲ ਕਰਨ ਵਾਲਾ|
p. The following are Thankhaahie (individuals liable to be reprimanded involving automatic social boycott):
1. Anyone maintaining relations or communion* with Meene, Masand, followers of Dheermal or Raam-Raae, or any other anti-Panthic individuals or groups, Narhee-maar (users of tobacco), kurhee-maar (those who kill or abort their daughters), and Sirgum (those who cut their hair). [You can associate with any of these if they take Amrit and join the Panth.]
2. One who eats/drinks leftovers of a non-Amritdhari or Patit (fallen Sikh)
3. One who dyes their beard [or Kes]
4. One who marries their son or daughter in exchange for financial gain
5. Users of intoxicants (hemp, opium, liquor, narcotics, bhang (marijuana), etc.)
6. One holds any ceremonies against Gurmat.
7. One who [knowingly] makes any mistake in Rehat

(Sikh Rehat Maryada)

The first point (*) has a footnote that states:  The above line in the Sikh Rehat Maryada has a footnote that states:     
ਵਰਤਣ ਤੋਂ ਭਾਵ ਰੋਟੀ-ਬੇਟੀ ਦੀ ਸਾਂਝ ਹੈ, ਜਿਸ ਦਾ ਸਪਸ਼ਟ ਅਰਥ ਰਿਸ਼ਤਾ-ਨਾਤਾ ਕਰ ਕੇ ਬਰਾਦਰੀ ਦਾ ਸੰਬੰਧ ਪੈਦਾ ਕਰਨਾ ਹੈ | ਗੁਰੁ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਦਾ ਭਾਵ ਪੰਥ ਨੂੰ ਇਕ ਕਰ ਕੇ ਰਖਣ ਦਾ ਸੀ ਤਾਂਕਿ ਵਖਰੇ ਗੁਰਿਆਈ ਦੇ ਸੈਂਟਰ ਜਾਂ ਮਿਲ-ਗੋਭਾ ਸਿਖੀ ਦੇ ਅਡੇ ਨਾ ਬਣਨ |    
Association means Roti-Beti dee saanjh (sharing relations via eating food and marriage), which in a clearer sense means social boycott. The reason for Guru Ji for this Rehat was to keep the Panth united and one so that different centres of Guruship and different version of washed-down Sikhi do not get made.”   
(Sikh Rehat Maryada)
A Thankhaiya is someone that is boycotted and therefore his or her Ardaas cannot be done at Sri Akal Takht Sahib, they cannot perform any Panthic Seva, i.e. Keertan, Katha, reading from Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji for the benefit of the Sangat (but they would be able to read Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji for their own personal benefit), making or serving Prashaad, and making or serving Langar.

To eat from Amritdharis that keep Rehat  is not a violation of Sikh Rehat Maryada, but rather endorsed by Sikh Rehat Maryada. If anyone should be allowed to cook Langar in the name of equality, then what next? Smokers and those that don't keep Rehat can preach on the stages by doing Keertan and Katha?


#4. "But Langar is Langar. When Ardaas has been done it's Langar. It is fine if one wishes to eat from Amritdharis but one should be flexible when it comes to the Langar at the Gurdwara."
RESPONSE: Simple question, "In India people have "Langar" prepared by workers that smoke, don't cover their heads and cook without having had a shower or bath in the morning. Is such food considered "Langar" in accordance to Gurmat?" The reluctant reply was, "No." "Why is it not 'Guru-Ka-Langar'? Because it is not made in accordance to Guru's Maryada!" 

Guru Gobind Singh Ji says:
ਇਹੈ ਮੋਰ ਆਗਯਾ ਸੁਨੋ ਲੈ ਪਿਆਰੇ । ਬਿਨਾ ਤੇਗ, ਕੇਸੰ ਦਿਵੋ ਨ ਦਿਦਾਰੇ
“Listen O beloved ones: It (the Kesh) is my stamp. Without (wearing) a weapon and keeping Kesh, I will not give my audience.”
(Gurbilaas Paatshaahee 10)
How would Guru Gobind Singh Ji give His seal of approval to Langar, let alone eat Langar, that was made by someone who has not obeyed him by keeping Kesh and taking Amrit, when Guru Ji refuses to give audience? Sadly, Maryada has compromised across the world to please the masses at the expense at making Guru Ji happy.
ਕਬੀਰ ਦੀਨੁ ਗਵਾਇਆ ਦੁਨੀ ਸਿਉ ਦੁਨੀ ਨ ਚਾਲੀ ਸਾਥਿ ||
ਪਾਇ ਕੁਹਾੜਾ ਮਾਰਿਆ ਗਾਫਲਿ ਅਪੁਨੈ ਹਾਥਿ ||੧੩||

"Kabeer, the mortal loses their faith, for the sake of the world, but the world shall not go along with them in the end. The idiot strikes their own foot with the axe by their own hand. ||13||"

(Salok Bhagat Kabeer Ji, 1365)

Guru Gobind Singh Ji clearly states:
ਗੁਰੂ ਕਾ ਸਿਖ, ਸਰਦਾਰ ਹੋਵੈ, ਸ਼ਾਹੂਕਾਰ ਹੋਵੈ, ਮੁਸ੍ਨਦੀ ਹੋਵੈ, ਆਪਣੇ ਲੰਗਰ ਰਸੋਈ ਵਿਚ ਸਿਖ ਰਖੇ ॥ ਹੁਕਈ, ਟੋਪੀਆ, ਭਾਦਣੀ, ਚੋਰ, ਯਾਰ, ਜੂਏਬਾਜ਼, ਕੁਰਹਿਤੀਆ ਨਾ ਰਖੈ
“A Gursikh- whether a chief, wealthy or learned- should keep only a Sikh in his Langar and kitchen. Smokers, hat-wearers, shaven people, thieves, gamblers, and those who committed Kurehats (cardinal prohibitions) should not be kept(Rehitnama Bhai Chaupa Singh Ji)

Similarly, the Panthic Sikh Rehat Maryada of 1932 stated under the section entitled 'Seva':
ੲ) ਗੁਰੂ ਕੇ ਲੰਗਰ ਦੀ ਸਮਗਰੀ ਲਈ ਸਹਾਇਤਾ ਕੋਈ ਆਦਮੀ ਦੇ ਸਕਦਾ ਹੈ, ਪਰ ਲੰਗਰ ਪਕਾਣ ਦੀ ਸੇਵਾ ਕੇਵਲ ਸਿਖ ਹੀ ਕਰ ਸਕਦਾ ਹੈ |
"c) Any person can help with supplying food for the Guru’s Langar, but the Seva of cooking the Langar can only be carried out by a Sikh."
(Sikh Rehat Maryada, published 1932)
Sadly this clause was taken out of the most up to date version of the Sikh Rehat Maryada for unknown reasons. This has added to the trend of watering down of Sikhi and weakening of Sikh principals. However, this clause can be seen in the original 1932 published Sikh Rehat Maryada on www.panjabdigilib.org.



#5. "But in a Gurdwara there shouldn't be two Langars. Guru Ji made one Langar. It is wrong to have one Langar for the rest of the Sangat, and then separate Langar made for Amritdharis [who keep Rehat]?"
RESPONSE:
I totally agree! There should be one Langar, and that Langar should be in accordance to Gurmat and Guru's Maryada. However, I am not going to go in to the Kitchen and pull ladies and men out for violating Gurmat. To enforce Langar Maryada is the collective Saadh Sangat and Gurdwara management's role. So what can a Gursikh keeping dietary Rehat do? On one hand you do not want to knowingly break someone's heart and on the other hand you have to eat. Realistically, the majority of Sangat are now non-Amritdhari and the majority cut their Kesh, cut their eyebrows, drink alcohol (including ladies!) etc. Amritdharis in most places are a minority. So sometimes it is difficult for one or two Amritdharis to cook Langar for such a great number. The solution would be education and awareness in a loving way and encourage others to take Amrit and eventually have one Langar in accordance to Guru's Maryada.  Imagine Langar being cooked whilst reciting Gurbani and those cooking the Langar are imbued in Naam. Those eating the Langar would be spiritually charged and blessed!


#6. "That is fine. But there are some Amritdharis that will not eat from other Amritdharis. They even refuse to eat Deg which is made by an Amritdhari and it is even made in Sarbloh. Isn't this wrong? I understand not to eat from non-Amritdharis, but how it can be jusitified to refuse Langar and Parshaad made by another Amritdhari? They think they are higher than us."
RESPONSE: "If an Amritdhari made food for another Amritdhari that is striving to keep Rehat. But after enquiring, the person who has cooked admits that since a long time he doesn't wake up Amrit-vela and doesn't do Nitnem (daily prayers). Would it be wrong for the Singh keeping Rehat to very politely decline to eat the food offered to him?"  The person replied, "Ermm... That's understandable. The other person is violating Rehat." That's the answer. Someone may be Amritdhari but they may happily eat from those that smoke, cut their hair and do observe Rehat. If for example, such Amritdharis make Langar and Prashaad, then we cannot blame the Gursikh that is trying to keep Rehat, for not eating. Rather than pulling someone down in discipline, we should strive to step up our discipline and love for Guru Ji. It is always important to keep humility in our actions, not intentionally break someone's heart, be polite in our behaviour and where possible able to calmly and respectfully explain our actions to avoid misunderstanding and ill feeling.


#7. "[Dietary] Bibek can boost our egos and we may start to believe we are better than others and therefore move away from humility. Isn't it better to focus on being a good Gursikh first and keeping the other Rehats?"

RESPONSE: Rehat belongs to Guru Gobind Singh Ji, and does not belong to any individual that we can make choices of which Rehat is less or more important than the other. If someone out of personal choice doesn't wish to follow Guru Ji's instructions, that is up to them, but they should let others live who wish to practice following Guru Ji's instructions. 'Bibek' is an exclusive practice which does not seek to stratify or categories people but discipline an individual bent upon adopting a spiritual lifestyle. It serves as a healthy lifestyle and spiritual moral booster. Aspects heavily required in today's time by anyone walking the path of Sikhi.

If someone was struggling with Amrit-vela would eating from a Manmukh more likely to help the individual or harm them further? In the same scenario, if someone was struggling with Amrit-vela would eating from a Gursikh who chants Gurbani whilst cooking help or harm the individual? Similarly, someone may have a boosted ego for wearing the Panj Kakkaar. Would anyone in that situation advice the Amritdhari to remove his Kachhera or Kirpaan and work on their ego first? No. So why is the same logic used for Gurmat diet? We should all try to work on our ego, through Ardaas, Simran, Gurbani and Seva. Understandably, if someone is struggling with ego and keeping dietary Bibek and eating in Sarbloh, then one should keep such a Rehat as discreet as possible, rather than giving it up.


To be continued...

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