SRM | Sikh Preachers
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Sikh Preachers

Th ose who understand the teachings and tenets of Sikh religion and convey them convincingly. Sikh Dharm Parchar in India and abroad

Most of the Sikh intelligentsia of today agrees that the position of Sikh Dharam Parchar is not satisfactory or it needs a new Singh Sabha Movement to bring the requisite changes. Th e position has become deplorable because of the present leadership mainly represented by those who control historic and non historic Gurdwaras including the Singh Sahiban of Takhts. Th e SGPC, the premier organization of the Sikhs has no vision or policies to deal with the various Panthik issues. Th e standard of education in Sikh institutions is quite poor and as such the Sikhs themselves do not want to send their children to these schools. We don’t have any libraries, conference room or research centers where we can have well planned programmes to increase general as well as spiritual knowledge of the Sikhs. We also do not have high class hospitals, dispensaries or other medical centers to look aft er the health of our people. We do not have a standard translation or uniformly accepted interpretation of Sri Guru Granth Sahib. We do not have even Maryada which can be uniformly accepted and followed by all the Sikhs living anywhere in the country. We also do not have uniformity in calendar as to observe our important days. Whatever issue has come up at one point of time was left in between and still pending the fi nal approval and applicability. Anandpur Sahib Resolution was aimed at making the states more powerful as to play a useful role in our federal setup, but, the same was confused as a cessionist activity on the part of the Sikh, gradually a beautiful concept was lost. All India Sikh Gurdwara Act was also aimed at setting up an all Indian machinery for the proper control of the Gurdwara and uniting all the Sikh by a uniform law, but this also failed at the last moment. Th ere was a lot discussion on article 25 of the Constitution, but it is still there on the statute book and the Sikhs have not been able to get it deleted to highlight their identity separate from the Hindus. Th e caste system, the rituals and superstitions and the groupism have all become so powerful again that whatever Gurus wanted us to leave, have become a part of our life. All these show that our Parcharks, Ragis and Kathavachaks or our leaders have all failed to do the Parchar in the real earnest. What to speak of spreading the teachings of the Masters among the people of the world, we have even lost a large number of those poor and neglected people who were part of Sikhism, but are gradually going away from our faith. Th ey include Sindhis, Sikligars, Lubanas, Sehajdharis etc. Even boys of the Sikh families including the families of our leaders and honourable persons of the past and present, are getting their hair shaved and emphasizing that keeping hair intact is not the necessary requirement for being a Sikh. Our leaders are not paying any attention to this issue of dwindling Sikh identity particularly in Punjab, India. In foreign countries, there is opposite problem also for those who want to stick to their identity, but are fi nding it diffi cult to explain it to the people living in those foreign countries, where the Sikhs are now settling down. Th e question arises that what should be done to improve the situation of Sikh Dharam Parchar. It may be mentioned here that before discussing the steps for improvement we must fi nd out what kind of Parcharks are available and what are they doing. In India, the main categories of Parcharak are those of Ragis (Gurbani singers) and Kathavachaks. Most of them sing Gurbani and deliver Katha for earning their income. Th ey mainly concentrate on the money which they may get and the methods to make more and more money by giving more programmes. Th ey are least bothered as whether anybody is understanding the Kirtan or the Katha. Many of them may not be knowing the real meaning or the spiritual import of their subjects. Th eir greed has made them rich and aff ected their living standard in such a way that their personal life now fails to infl uence their listeners. Th ere are also splitting groups and the jealousy among the groups gives rise to confl icts, disputes and some time violent scenes. Th ere is a second group of our preachers who can be stated as community leaders. Th ey are supposed to address the audience on various Sikh issues and enlighten them about their solutions. Th ey have to discuss the issues with the public and take them to appropriate forums and authorities for their solutions. However, the knowledge, the wisdom, the education standard and the spirit which are required for this kind of ability are not present in our present day leadership. Further, they are more concerned about their positions and support of the masses to keep those positions intact. Th at is why they support Babas, the so-called Saints who have lakhs of followers. Although, these Babas consider themselves as religious leaders, they only confuse the people with their own views and concepts and instead of guiding them to the truthful path as shown by Sri Guru Granth Sahib, they recommend to the followers their own rituals, ceremonies and verses. Th ere is another category of preachers who claim to be intellectual or interpret the Gurbani in present context of modern day living. Th ey oppose the orthodox interpreter and the conventional Sampardas, 500 Sikh 214 Role Models Taksals and organizations. Th eir style has attracted the younger generation, but, still a large number of people do not believe them as the right interpreters of Gurbani and Gurmat. Th is situation has created a wedge between the conventional and the modern Kathavachaks and speakers on religious subjects. Th ere is another category of Parcharks who are of the view that in the modern society, the youth cannot be attracted by Katha or Kirtan alone. Th ey have attracted the youth towards Sikh martial arts like gatka or by other arts like painting, cartoons or the art of speaking and writing by developing communication skills. Some of these Parcharaks are presenting their themes to explain the Sikh concepts on stage through dramas or through fi lms, documentaries, small fi lms or even feature fi lms. Th is category of Parcharaks is an intellectual one and has employed the new techniques and technology for Parchar. Th ese fi lms and dramas and other art like painting, cartoons etc. are presented to the younger generation by holding camps. A number of spiritual camps are being organized in America, Cananda, Australia and European countries for the last 20 years. Th e young ones who had attended these camps in the earlier years are emerging as good Sikhs, much better than even many of those who listen to Katha and Kirtan every day. Yogi Harbhajan Singh, who had adopted Yoga as a means to attract the foreigners towards Sikhism, has now a number of organizations following his footsteps, carrying forward this task aft er his death. Th ese converted Sikhs through Yoga techniques are also ideal Sikhs as they not only do Nitnem and recite Waheguru at all times, but are also possessed of great qualities of a Gursikh like simplicity, humility, humanity, honesty and dedication. Th ey keep them away from non-veg food and any kind of intoxicants. Th eir spirit of service is so well known that people can expect any help from them. Many of them have even learnt Punjabi and put their children in Sikh institutions so that they may acquire fi rsthand knowledge of Sikhs history, culture and teachings of the Masters as enshrined in Sri Guru Granth Sahib. Although, all the above mentioned category of preacher have an important role to play, but it is the last category of people who are propagating the Sikh religion by example as well as preaching, in the right earnest. Th ere are limited confl icts and jealousy among them, because they understand the Gurbani and make sincere eff orts to make it a part of their life. Th e fi rst category has no doubt created a large number of Istri Sabhas, Sukhmani Societies and Kirtani Jathas, but most of the members of these groups do not understand the true meaning of Gurbani and are oft en scene as indulging, in jealousy, confl icts, groupism and litigation. Th e second category of leader is doing more harm than advantage to the religion. It is mainly because of them that people have been lead astray from Sri Guru Granth Sahib to false Babas, Saints and hypocrites leaders. Th e third category of intellectual suffer from ego as they think others quite ignorant and their view point as only correct and possible. Th e need is to have healthy discussion on all such issues on which there is a confl ict. Gurbani has shown us the way that for resolving any issue, we have to the sit together. Some of the Sikh preachers have been adopted in this category to elaborate the efforts being made by them.

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Birendra Kaur

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Yadwinder Singh Satkoha

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Bhai Pinderpal Singh

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Bhai Ranjit Singh

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Bhai Sarabjeet Singh Dhunda

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Dr. Charan Kamal Singh

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Sukhmani Kaur

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Dr. Raghbir Singh Bains

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G.Jaswant S. Parwana

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Giani Santokh Singh

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Giani Sahib Singh Ji

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Gurmel Singh

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Harjinder Singh Dilgeer

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Jagraj Singh

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Kulbir Singh Dhillon

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Nanak Singh Nishter

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Ujagar Singh

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Rana Inderjeet Singh

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Sarabjeet Singh Renuka

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