Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Monday, January 30, 2006

Friday, January 27, 2006

Parvinder Singh Khalsa

Parvinder Singh and his daughter.

Speaking of the Khalsa family... This man has soooooooooooooooooooooooo much GYAN.
He is the Gurmat teacher at Miri Piri Academy in Amritsar (a part time job).
He knows so much about Sikh history and the Sikh way of life. In addition to all the knowledge he has from Gurbani and living as a Sikh, he has done a lot of research as well.
He knows authentic history. When I asked him about women being a part of the Panj, he started to list off women in history who were part of the Panj. He knows these historic facts from really old texts which he's had the privilege of viewing. He told me in the future he may be able to take digital photos of some old texts to document them. He has also had the privilege of reading Guru Gobind Singh's handwriting on several occasions and recognizes it immediately upon viewing.
He is soooooooooooooooooooooooooo humble also.
Sikhi has a great future with people like him. Sant Sipai.
He told me a story when he took several students from Miri Piri Academy to do Ishnaan seva at the Hari Mandir Sahib. They were boy students, but their beards had not grown in yet. The other sewadars didn't want to allow the students. There were about 30 men trying to debate with Parvinder. The students didn't know Punjabi, so it was Parvinder by himself who had to stand his ground. He said they kept trying to make excuses, but at the same time they knew that he knew Gurbani and could refute any of their false claims. They were so stubborn, but they didn't even want to attempt to reference Gurbani, because they knew they had nothing. Eventually they let all the boys except one in. They felt by keeping out the smallest they had won a victory.
I spent as much time as I could with Parvinder, while in Amritsar. He also does a lot of seva. He has a group of friends who do charitable works. He warned me about other charities, that are very corrupted. I don't want to offend anybody by naming the corrupted charities or the witnessed corruption, but I will say they are the famous charities that people know about. The corruption is so disgusting, because the people who are supposed to receive aid are victimized more, and the generosity of the donors is betrayed.
Parvinder though has the highest ideals of seva in mind. He just has a group of friends, without any formal organization, and they directly help those in need. After the Hari Mandir Sahib, my best times in Amritsar were with Parvinder and I'm blessed to know him.
WaheGuru Ji Ka Khalsa, WaheGuru Ji Ki Fateh!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Good friends

This is my good friend Hardeep Singh. In this picture he's talking to somebody on the third floor of their house.
This at an internet shop in Amritsar. Monu's shop doesn't look as 'high-tech' but I prefer it. This place has too many limitations for me. At Monu's shop I was able to upload pictures and use the computer for anything I wanted.
After the internet shop we saw people playing gatka near the Hari Mandir Sahib. Hardeep knew the guys and so he stopped to participate. They all have respect for Hardeep and they all wanted to spar him.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The Khalsa family

When leaving India my brother and I had a flight at 12:50 AM Friday, which meant we should be at the airport around 9 or 10 PM on Thursday night. We decided not to go to Delhi until Thursday. Wednesday was our last day in Amritsar. I got really sick again that day, but despite it was an incredible day. I can't really describe it, but it was great. Part of the greatness was meeting up with Vicky Singh again and his wife. I didn't eat hardly anything because I was feeling ill. I went to sleep around midnight that night. I was trying to get all my (new) stuff packed up. I then woke up around 1:30 AM to take a dip in the sarover and meditate before meeting a taxi at 3:00 to go to the train station. The Shatabdi express was not express that day and we didn't get into Delhi until around 1:00 PM. My brother and I had several shops we wanted to visit in Delhi and we only had one day to do it. We had arranged a taxi for the day and went around to the different shops (music shops and homeopathic shop). I was tired and hungry. I hadn't eaten hardly anything in two days (which is a big deal for me). It was around 4:30 and we had just one more stop. We went to visit family.
Harmeet Singh from Delhi had seen my blog, and invited me and my brother to visit him at his home via email. I wrote him that we were only going to be in Delhi one day and that we had shops to visit. He even offered to pick us up and take us around, but I had already arranged a taxi. We had never met or corresponded before that time.
It was so nice after running around without eating starting at 1:00 AM and planning to catch a flight after midnight to sit in the home of a Sikh family and eat great Punjabi food. I felt like I was at home and I relaxed so much and we went to the airport full and the journey was again really long, but we went with a great send-off. Thank you Harmeet Singh and family!
Hari Singh (my brother) and Harmeet Singh.
Harmeet Singh's brother (I always catch people when they're on the phone :-)

Española Culture (rambling)

Last week I was thinking that I may have lost all my Española culture.
I started to think, am I loosing a connection with the people? I really enjoy spending my time with the sangat and my Sikh friends.
Then last night I went to Auto Zone and I realized, I'll never loose the Española in me.

Cool event

Sat Guru Singh has organized a cool event with the NBA development league. We don't have any major league teams in New Mexico, but we now have an NBA development league team. The Albuquerque Thunderbirds. March 25th is:
It'll be cool to go to a basketball game and see a whole bunch of turbans in the crowd!

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Pictures from a few months ago

I took these photos in the internal memory of my camera and never pulled them off. I usually got my photos off of the SD card that is in the camera.
This picture is from when Bhai Avtar Singh and Jetha were in Española last year. The first night they played I sat right in front of them and took these two photos. This photo shows Bhai Avtar Singh playing the Taus and his son Bhai Kultar Singh on the harmonium.

This photo was after ishnaan seva last year as I was walking to my brother's house in the Amrit Vela. The sight was much better than this photo shows. The color of the sky was really cool. There were many tones that merged into one sky. All the colors were in harmony, yet if placed differently they may have contrasted.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

More from the samagam

Jai Inder Singh and Amar Singh, two Albuquerque residents and friends of my nephew.

Gurujot playing the dilruba. He sang and played really nice.

Doing kirtan.

Albuquerque samagam

This year the Albuquerque samagam was held at the Albuquerque Gurdwara. It turned out to be a small samagam. It was really nice though. Kirtan and simran and sangat, great combination.
Kids doing kirtan.

Another picture of the kids doing kirtan.
Sitting in Gurdwara.
Jaspal Singh and Gurkamal Singh. I asked if I could take their photograph and they were nice enough to oblige.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

my beautiful niece

Her grandma is Amrit, her mom is Kirtan, and she is Vela.
My brother Hari with Vela.

Vela with my sister (her mom).
I had to post at least one picture of my nephew. It's hard to believe Jodhan is the older brother of somebody.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Naina Devi

Last time I was in Anandpur Sahib I was intruiged by Naina Devi. I thought it was some town really far away and up in the Himalayas. To my surprise you can easily take a taxi up there and spend a morning or afternoon there.
In the taxi on the way up to Naina Devi. This guy was driving fast up a really windy road. He would honk when it was a blind curve. I guess if somebody else would have honked he might have slowed down.
Shivalik mountains? I know the Himalayas are in the background, and you could see snow on them.
Going up to the Mandir.
A lady with a snake. She didn't harass me, but other people were really bugging me to give them money or buy some lame product.
The lake with a name I've forgotten. I guess there's a famous dam also.
If you click on this picture and you look in the center on the right, you'll see a school yard with a bunch of kids lined up. The taxi driver said they were taking exams. I'm not sure why they do it outside and in lines? Also I didn't know if I felt sorry for the kids in the sun or in the shade. I would get sunburned in the sun and it was kind of cool in the shade.A monkey at the mandir.
The baby monkey had just jumped from the wire to the ledge when I took the photo. I was trying to get the monkey in mid-air.
The mandir. This was the first Mandir I'd ever been to. I'd been to India before and still I'd never been to a mandir. I just saw it and took a picture, there was nothing really drawing me to it. I only stuck around for about a minute. After this we visited a cave which smelled bad and didn't allow cameras. Also my camera broke at that moment. Since I updated this blog with pictures I took after this day while in India, it's obvious that I managed to fix my camera. It took me a few days though. The pictures I took at Guru ka Lahore are in my brother's camera which I will definitely like to post here. We went to Guru ka Lahore in the same evening as we went to Naina Devi. We even hired the same taxi and driver.
Finally the mischief of that crab caught up with me.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Thursday, January 12, 2006

My true love

One of my babies

Since I've gotten requests, here's a change of pace. This is one of my babies. I've probably never discussed it on my blog, but one of my hobbies is working on my cars and lowriding. I bought this car with modifications already on it. This is a 1980 Monte Carlo with a chop-top. It has a reinforced frame which allows it to do front, back, side to side, pancake, see-saw, and three wheeling. The switches aren't wired up right now and it's missing a dump (Hydraulics require at least one pump and one dump). Also it needs 4 more batteries. Also it needs a little bit of work with the engine. The previous owner was planning to take out the engine and chrome it out. He kind of left the engine just hooked up enough to drive it a little bit. It has candy-flake paint, which you can't see that well in this picture.
My real baby is a 1976 Chevrolet Monte Carlo (yeah I have two monte's) which I'm building from scratch. I recently installed headers and a dual exhaust, but found out that the headers are only a few inches from the ground and now I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to lower the car. It's been almost two years since I bought the airbag suspension kit to put in my monte carlo, but I was in school then and other things have gotten in the way as well. I'm hoping this summer to work a little more on my '76 monte.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Don't know what to make of it yet

By following a few links I found out about google video and then I found the following movie which is online:
Click here to watch the movie online:
I don't have time to watch this right now, but I watched a few parts. This movie has as one of the main characters an actor playing a Sikh. I was skimming the movie and found one scene, maybe the climax of the movie, where the main character is in Gurdwara listening to kirtan and they go to various simultaneous scenes. One scene there is a fight, another scene a Sikh is being attacked, another scene involves a shooting. But they keep going back to the Gurdwara and while they show all the different scenes they keep the kirtan going. It seemed as though the film maker was being mostly respectful of Sikhs, but I definitely don't like what is shown on screen while kirtan is being played.
I know a lot of Sikhs will probably get upset by this movie, but I would encourage everyone to be respectful. If you disagree with this movie, keep your protests civil. For the most part the movie shows an accurate portrayal of discrimination and hate resulting from ignorance. It shows Sikhs as very peaceful and innocent victims of people's hate. Also the kirtan that is in the background during the climax is explained at the end which is nice. Except for the scene where the kirtan is being played in the background the movie doesn't seem that bad.

More from Anandpur Sahib

The museum of the Khalsa, which is still under construction.
The workers looked like ants. The scene also reminded me of the movie 'The 10 commandments' where there were all these slaves building these massive structures.