Monday, November 28, 2005

LA

Japman Singh and Heera Singh playing kirtan. Gursharan Singh sitting to the left.
In this picture you can see my brother and in the background is Japman Singh and Daman Singh.
Pictures of the sangat. You can see Sat Avtar Kaur, from the Louisana pictures, in this picture. She lives in LA and goes to UCLA.
Sangat
People enjoying the samagam.
Hari Singh sitting behind the Guru.
Gurujot Singh playing kirtan. He played very well.
Close up.
Gagan Singh on the move.
This baby kept coming up to me and tapping me on the back. She's very cute. I do wish though that her parents would cover her head while in the Gurdwara. I don't know why it bothers me, but I saw a lot of little girls with their heads uncovered while sitting with the Sangat during the weekend. We tell people that they must remove their shoes and cover their heads while with the Guru, but we don't require it of babies?
The really cute kid from yesterday.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

In my humble opinion, kids should be asked politely to cover their heads too. But because kids don't know much about the importance of covering their heads and neither they know much about religion, god and rehat-maryada therefore, I think, pleople don't care too much when they see kids without their head covered.But nonetheless, I agree with you that it the ripe time to start teaching them all customs.

Prabhu Singh said...

The children's behavior certainly doesn't bother me because they don't know any better, but it bothers me that the parents don't make an effort. It is mostly with girls too, which I find upsetting. We are a religion about equality, why do parents put a patka on their 2 year old boy, but his older sister is running around with her head uncovered? The boy will grow and have internal strength from facing the world with his turban, at the same time he will see inequality. When I was a kid I used to think 'why do I face so many challenges with my turban and the girls are allowed to blend in?'
Sikh men keep complaining that they can't find wives because Sikh women don't respect the turban. A Sikh woman is never going to learn true respect for the turban unless she wears one herself. When faced with challenges, every Sikh with a turban must face a decision: 'Do I believe in the turban and all that it represents, or don't I?' This leads Sikhs to further study their religion which often leads to strength and spiritual development and faith. If somebody never asks the question 'why am I a Sikh?' then they will never assign a value to being a Sikh. Sikhs who don't wear a turban (mostly women) often times don't ask that question because it is easy for them to be a casual Sikh. Nothing prompts them to ask themselves questions and explore their faith. This gender inequality is very real and it starts with the girls who have hair styles, while their brothers wear turbans. In Española every single person in the Gurdwara has their head covered, with no exceptions. If somebody comes in with a baby or a child with their heads uncovered. somebody will get a scarf from the shoe room and hand it either to the parent or the child. This weekend I saw girls who were as old as 8 giving napkins and prashad with their heads uncovered. The whole sangat clearly saw them, and I was thinking 'doesn't this bother anybody else?'

Sikhi Seeker said...

I saw Gurujot Singh doing kirtan. Made me wonder do you do Kirtan as well?? (Cuz if my memory serves me right, you don't speak punjabi..:))

Prabhu Singh said...

I don't speak Punjabi, but I'm very fluent in Gurmukhi. Reading my banis everyday certainly keeps me in practice :-) I would like to learn Punjabi so that I may understand more Gurbani. I understand a fair amount of words in my banis, the ones that are repeated so much.
I do sing kirtan, though I've rarely performed and I've gotten nervous the few times that I have. I sing gurbani all the time though, because I love it. I'm currently studying raag and learning to play the dilruba. Maybe someday there will an mp3 here or on Gurumustuk's blog with me.

ਿੲਕ ਿਸੰਘ said...

aahhh yes! prabhu you describe the indian sikh community gurdwara so well! :)

i recently took my (then) 12 month old daughter to gurudwara at night and it was really really cold...so covering the head came naturaly but i and my wife forgot that she had leather shoes on...OOPS! i was taking her to MathaTake and an old lady came running to me and was like "Aah lado..." holding her feet...i was so embarassed. but i doubt that same lady would've told a grown girl to cover her head because her Chunni slipped...which is insane!

and i'm with you that the responsibility is of parents and the parents are to blame. sometimes i think gurudwara is used for play dates with your own kind than exposing them to Kirtan and power of prayers and Sikhi...

Sikhi Seeker said...

It'll definitely be interesting to see you singing Kirtan :D

While going through the pictures once again, the picure with Hari Singh behind Guruji, what is the Granth Sahib in the front, left corner of the picture...just curious!

Anonymous said...

yah..what is that on the front left corner in the very first pic? why is it at such in such a low place? shouldnt it be next to SGGS? cuz thats complete disrespect having ppl feet be parallel to it as they take matha tek...dude whats up?

Anonymous said...

i think it is important for ppl to know punjabi and punjabi culture, not bhangra, but just the humility that exists in punjab and the way ppl of punjab live...because after all this is where Sikhi was born and western ppl, no matter white or brown, need to visit the gursikhs of punjab to really understand humility cuz my experience with white sikhs and western sikhs in general has been a disappointing one. they seem to have no humility or the extreme sensitivity about sikhi like punjabi gursikhs in punjab. i see white sikhs not wearing kesharas or kangas, and i dont see them feeling the pain of the bad situation of gursikhs in punjab who dont have good schools, good housing, or any decent chance of excelling in life. also i seen white sikhs in amritsar...they dont even care to hardly talk to the punjabi sikhs, i remember specifically atleast on two occasions i was literally ignored by white sikhs. this is so against Sikhi. why are white sikh like this? why do they seperate themselves? why dont they come to the regular gurdwaras...and dont tell me its cuz of politics cuz lets face it ...sikhism has been political since its inception. sikhs dont have a homeland...the gurdwara is a place worship, community center, a political entity, educator, protector, basically everything for the sikhs...so why do white sikhs have seperate gurdwaras? i dont know..im just really hurt at how sikhi has been adopted by white, western sikhs but the attitude is very much still imperialistic. and i dont think that a person who cant speak punjanbi cant be sikh...they can...as many sikhs who could not read or write in Gurmukhi fell in love with Waheguru by simplying reciting "waheguru" over and over, or reciting Mool Mantar. However, these ppl had limitless humility that does not exist in white sikhs, i went to a white sikh gathering...women were wearing sleevless shirts and reading from SGGS...this is not humility. SGGS is our living GUru..so would we go see our father dressed in such a unmodest manner? i dont know think sikh women of punjab would every do such a thing..it hurts me to see my religion becoming the target of ppl who have no concept of humility and completely letting go of your ego and becoming the dust of those who know better...i just cant imagine any white/western, brown or white person doing that?

i admire a persons effort...but only it is not based on "fake it until you make it" cuz no one can fake the radiance that Guru ji gives us once we have been blessed with His Sikhi.

Prabhu Singh said...

That is an Amrit Kirtan, it is not the Siri Guru Granth Sahib.

Prabhu Singh said...

A Sikh should see all people as one!
You are generalizing all 'White' Sikhs because of the actions of a few.
You say that 'white' Sikhs attend seperate Gurdwaray. But these comments are below pictures of a Gurdwara with mostly Punjabi people taken by a 'white' guy (which is me).
Most of the assumptions you have written are just plain wrong. There are some arrogant Sikhs in all communities. Your conception of modesty is obviously different than other people's conception of modesty. If a person didn't feel like they were dressed appropriately for the Guru, why would they go to the Gurdwara like that?
I am a 'white' person who is Sikh. Like all other human beings I have to fight ego as well as the other four thieves (lust, anger, greed, attachment). However, nothing is more important to me than the Guru. I love the Guru and I love the Guru's Dharma. As such I see people equally, including all Sikhs. I go to any and all Gurdwaray where I feel welcome. I see white Sikhs and I see Punjabi Sikhs who are arrogant, and I see them as equivalent to those who are humble. Sikhs are students, we all have our challenges. It is very un-Sikh to condemn any people. And it is insulting to divide a group of people (in this case all 'white' Sikhs) into a separate category because you have had a negative interaction with a few people.
Come visit us in Española and you'll see that these stereotypes will not hold up. Every Sikh is a learner, it's our duty to see God in everyone, no matter what stage they are at.