Wind is the teacher, Water is the father,
and Earth is the great mother.
Day and night are the two kind nurturers,
and (the world) plays under them..
The record of good and bad deeds is read out
In presence of the Lord of Dharma.
According to their own deeds, some draw closer, some are driven away.
Those who have meditated on the Name of the Lord,
And departed after having worked by the sweat of their brow,
O Nanak, their faces are radiant (when in God’s court)
And many others are saved along with them.
Guru Nanak Dev ji.
Amidst one of the unique and greatest farmers agitations that the world has ever seen in the history of mankind, SEF commemorated Gur Nanak’s 551th Parkash Ustav on 3 December 2020. The online event was timely especially during these unprecedented life-threatening period in our history where on one hand the world grapples with the global pandemic and on the other the farmers’ livelihood is threated due to the 3 ordinance bills that the Government of India hurriedly promulgated in favour of the corporate capitalists.
Reflecting on Guru Nanak’s universal teachings exemplifies the state of consciousness that humankind can attain to lead a more fulfilling and fair life. The human life is not be wasted but must be utilised for the greater good. Baba Nanak toiled the soil on Punjab’s rural agriculture land during the latter years of his life.
His universal message was:
- kirat karo (work diligently and honestly)
- Wand shako (share)
- Naam japo (mediate)
Guru Nanak’s principles of living a life of fulfilment embody the bigger purpose of human life. SEF on this occasion brought its members together as part of an online sangat to hold spiritual discourses of Nanak’s life and his journeys.
The prog commenced with Rajinder Kaur Bhogal introduced the session with Fateh greetings and then she introduced the speakers.
- Mool Manter: Harminder Kaur Bhogal recited the Mool Manter.
- Satguru Nanak Pargatia Mitty Dhundh Jag Channan Hua ( from Varan Bhai Gurdas Ji). This composition was sung by Gurdeep Kaur Bhamrah.
- Poem. Simarjeet Kaur Aujla recited her own composition titled ‘ Simar simar simarke sukh pavo’
- Gurdwaras in Pakistan. Surinder Kaur Kalsi from Crawley gave a very informative talk drawing from her own experience of the yatra undertaken to Pakistan. She gave examples of many historical Gurdwaras and vividly narrated their importance and the links to events in Guru Ji’s life.
- Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s ‘Udasees’/ ‘travels with a mission’. Santokh Singh Saran gave a brief overview of Guru Ji’s encounters and dialogues with people of many faiths and from distant places like Arabia, Baghdad and Haridwaar. The main emphasis was on Guru Ji’s unrelenting nature of questioning of futile rituals and how he challenged the status quo.
- ‘Mere Waheguru Ji tusi mehar karo’. Dharmik geet was sung by Usha Sood.
- Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s teachings (Bani). Santokh Singh Dhanda gave an illuminating insight into the life of the greatest revolutionary that Guru Nanak was. He drew upon the fundamentals of his teachings which start with the Mool Mantar (Guru Nanak’s vision of God) and the universal message for the entire mankind. SSD reinforced this message with quotes from Jap Ji, and other compositions of Guru Ji from Guru Granth Sahib Ji. SSD warned us not to be too reliant upon ‘sakhis’ as historical resource; our mainstay should be Gurbani which is the spoken word of our Gurus. He sighted the example of Bhai Balla; he was not Guru Ji’s life companion like Bhai Mardana. SSD also reminded us that Guru Ji was actually born in April ; why we celebrate in November is questionable.
- Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s parvaar and their names. A short quiz by Gurmit Kaur Ryatt.
- Joga Singh Jogi: ‘Nanak de ghar amrit varse virla koi peevai ‘
- Santokh Singh Dhanda recited a kavita in honour of Guru Nanak Deve ji and conclude the event with
– Written by Gurmit Kaur Ryatt (Vice Chair) of Sikh Education Forum (SEF)
To find out more or to become a member of Sikh Education Forum, please email Rajinder Kaur Bhogal at: firstname.lastname@example.org