A Personal Note from Hari Jiwan Singh Khalsa

Sat Nam Dear Family,

Todays letter is personal. I have something I’d like to share with any of you who may so be interested.

Let me share with you what a great teacher the Siri Singh Sahib, Yogi Bhajan was. His beauty is best appreciated when the subtle experience of his teachings is recognized. Please, let me give you an example.

We, his students, have been given much more than many are aware of. Thursday evening we began our 11 day chant in devotion to Guru Ram Das. The second night of this tradition happens to always be my birthday. Over a hundred guests joined in Rehiras (our evening prayer), Gurubani, (spiritual songs,) chanting, storytelling, and a delicious homemade enchiladas meal by Loretta (our local chef), burfi and ice cream cake. All this was fun, but let me tell you the best part.

The Jatha (musicians) were all our first generation children. They are no longer children, they are our future. Most of my concern has been surrounding the competency of this generation. As I listened to this generation play and sing kirtan (spiritual music), I was transformed to understanding why my concern is so useless.

This generation of Sikhs is much better Sikhs then I, and, I’m embarrassed to tell you, you too. They know the protocol. I’m Chief of Protocol, but they know the protocol better than I do. They were trained in India. They were further trained in America. They know what we’re about. Are they as great as they think? No. Are they as innocent as we elders think? No. But, whatever they are, they are our future and I can relax!

Here’s the problem. They’re smarter than we give them credit for. They see through us. They see who we really are. They were trained to a standard of excellence we sometimes forget. They were born to it. The Siri Singh Sahib commanded it so. Sometimes, they see what we don’t or have been refusing to see forever. We need to work together so that leadership in this dharma transitions gracefully.

This generation comes with a training which reflected our beloved teacher’s projection. They were trained like that since birth. This generation must be given the opportunity to meet our challenges. They’ve been trained to handle them graciously and reverently. Let’s see how they do. It’s almost their turn.

I believe that they will handle it properly. That’s their training. Let’s see who takes their training seriously. They will become the leaders of the future. They hold the knowledge. They hold the key. They hold the future.

This dharma’s continued existence is held in the hands of those who are temporarily in charge. Their burden is much greater than anyone can imagine. Believe me. If they truly could see the consequences which may ensue, they probably wouldn’t take the job. Nevertheless, it’s a great opportunity for all involved. The key to leadership is to match up to the protocol established by our teacher, by the teachings, by our Guru, and by God Himself. It’s an opportunity few, and I mean few, get. It’s an opportunity to become a true servant of Guru Ram Das.

The Jatha playing Friday night was a reminder to me of why we’re all truly here. It’s the awareness of the continued greatness of our teacher. As we become more aware of his sublty, we recognize that he was so compassionate that he left behind the next generation, this generation, trained better then we. He gave us the gift of failure. Even if we elders don’t match up in God’s eyes, we haven’t failed because the next generation will be better than us. After all, that’s the true definition of success - create something or someone(’s) better. What a great teacher he was in creating a future better than the one we have, and what a compassionate teacher he was to guarantee our success through training this next generation from birth. It’s the blessing of a teacher who really loves his students. It’s actually a double blessing, and, really, an Infinite blessing.

I used to wonder whether our teacher did these things consciously by planning a strategy, or were they done through his intuition? For some time I though that he must be using strategy because that’s how I’ve been trained. And, it works. I soon realized that his actions, his teaching, his whatever, was all given to him by his Guru, not by his planning. And, Guru’s chirp (blessings) works best. I don’t mean to say that he didn’t plan, that’s always required, but his success was based on his intuition. And, that’s where we students were able to share in his success, his effortless teaching, his flowing training. He’s success was guaranteed through his service to Guru Ram Das. For him, accurate planning and his accepted devotion became the engine for Guru ji’s grace - success granted.

Now, that makes me grateful. Our teacher has greased our path. Through his grace we’ve been given a pass to the next level. Keep going. I know that’s what he’d want. Bring this sense of gratitude into your life and your life will change. It will get better. All you’ve been promised will become real. Joy, happiness, and contentment will be your continued experience. Gratitude can do a lot. Gratitude is the price and the blessing at the same time. Gratitude is a spice of life.

In His Mercy,
Hari Jiwan


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