Thursday, January 14, 2010

Are Punjabis prepared for the Big one? Lets say 7.5 Magnitude Earthquake hits Punjab

The Tribune, Ajit, Hindustan Times, Times of India newspaper headlines read something like below:

7.5 Earthquake Hits Punjab, India
100000 Feared Dead, 5 million homeless
Many Historical Buidlings in ruins
India virtually shuts down
Punjab paralyzed, 5 million without food and shelter

Punjabis are caught by surprise just like the Haitians were, the day before yesterday. I just hope and pray to Waheguru that I don't read the headlines like this, but my fear is that it may come true one day and that Punjab is not prepared for a big one like this. Now earhquakes are not new to India, they have happened and done damamge in other parts of India from time to time, like in Gujrat and even Punjab along time ago. But since it hasn't happened for the last 80-100+ years, people start to feel like they are immune to this shaking. Now this is not some farfecthed idea or some horoscopic prediction nor am I a pundit, or an astrologer or a doomsday predictor or anything, but this is just a known fact that Punjab lies in a major seismic zone, and is prone to shaking and Earthquake activities, especially Amritsar, Chandigarh, Jalandhar areas. Ferozepur and surrounding areas may be spared since they are less prone. I had saved a chart of earthquake zones in Punjab somewhere, and may add it to the post later if I find it. What I want to say is that is it is only a matter of time. With recent shaking in Milpitas and Eureka, California, and Haiti, it got me thinking about my dear Punjab and Punjabis. As far as I know, the Punjab State goverment has no enforcement of codes, no establishment of seismic standards or Indipendent State certification of Civil, Structural engineers or other types of engineers, when it comes to building. I think the seismic buidling codes exist but are hardly anyone bothers to follow them or check them or enforce them. The means are there, but the political will is lacking to do things right. Since many of the cities are old, most of the buidlings are built up to current seismic standards. They are basic brick and mortar with steel rebar reinforcements. I don't think many of the foundations are built to international seismic standards. With Sikh population beiign so small, I don't think Punjab or India or the Sikh community can afford this type of human and financial loss. This would be worst than a foreign power declaring war.

Just imagine,

Loss of human lives like above
Cost of medical aid, financial aid to victims
Cost of cremation of victims
food and clothing for survivors
Shelters for survivors
Cost of disease prevention from decomposing bodies especially in intense summer heat of India
Cost of rebuilding the lives of survivors
Gurdwaras ill prepared to provide langar to the victims
Punjab and India goverment business and financial losses
Loss of Communication and Power Infrastructure
and so on......

Can Punjab and Indian leadership can really afford such a loss to our community? I know Punjab will survive thru this and there will be lessons learned. And, even if it was financially capable, which to me means nothing, why react to a situation when we can proactively prepare for the worst, have logitics in place, shleters in place, emergency anaaj in place in a safe warehouse. Afterall, the teachings of our Gurus and the history of Sikhs being saint-soldiers, tells me a soldiers are always prepared and ready to tackle all types of worst case scenarios. This is just like learning Gatka to prepare for a battle that may come your way.

Satnam! And, my condolenses to the victims of Haiti Earthquake. May Waheguru bless their country and their souls. Makes me want to turn to Guru Granth Sahib and read and share Guru Ji's Hukum for this early morning, Thursday, January 14, 2010:


ੴ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ ॥
ੴ सतिगुर प्रसादि ॥
Ik▫oaʼnkār saṯgur parsāḏ.
One Universal Creator God. By The Grace Of The True Guru:


ਰਾਗੁ ਸੂਹੀ ਮਹਲਾ ੩ ਘਰੁ ੩ ॥
रागु सूही महला ३ घरु ३ ॥
Rāg sūhī mėhlā 3 gẖar 3.
Raag Soohee, Third Mehl, Third House:


ਭਗਤ ਜਨਾ ਕੀ ਹਰਿ ਜੀਉ ਰਾਖੈ ਜੁਗਿ ਜੁਗਿ ਰਖਦਾ ਆਇਆ ਰਾਮ ॥
भगत जना की हरि जीउ राखै जुगि जुगि रखदा आइआ राम ॥
Bẖagaṯ janā kī har jī▫o rākẖai jug jug rakẖ▫ḏā ā▫i▫ā rām.
The Dear Lord protects His humble devotees; throughout the ages, He has protected them.


ਸੋ ਭਗਤੁ ਜੋ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਹੋਵੈ ਹਉਮੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਜਲਾਇਆ ਰਾਮ ॥
सो भगतु जो गुरमुखि होवै हउमै सबदि जलाइआ राम ॥
So bẖagaṯ jo gurmukẖ hovai ha▫umai sabaḏ jalā▫i▫ā rām.
Those devotees who become Gurmukh burn away their ego, through the Word of the Shabad.


ਹਉਮੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਜਲਾਇਆ ਮੇਰੇ ਹਰਿ ਭਾਇਆ ਜਿਸ ਦੀ ਸਾਚੀ ਬਾਣੀ ॥
हउमै सबदि जलाइआ मेरे हरि भाइआ जिस दी साची बाणी ॥
Ha▫umai sabaḏ jalā▫i▫ā mere har bẖā▫i▫ā jis ḏī sācẖī baṇī.
Those who burn away their ego through the Shabad, become pleasing to my Lord; their speech becomes True.


ਸਚੀ ਭਗਤਿ ਕਰਹਿ ਦਿਨੁ ਰਾਤੀ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਆਖਿ ਵਖਾਣੀ ॥
सची भगति करहि दिनु राती गुरमुखि आखि वखाणी ॥
Sacẖī bẖagaṯ karahi ḏin rāṯī gurmukẖ ākẖ vakẖāṇī.
They perform the Lord's true devotional service, day and night, as the Guru has instructed them.


ਭਗਤਾ ਕੀ ਚਾਲ ਸਚੀ ਅਤਿ ਨਿਰਮਲ ਨਾਮੁ ਸਚਾ ਮਨਿ ਭਾਇਆ ॥
भगता की चाल सची अति निरमल नामु सचा मनि भाइआ ॥
Bẖagṯā kī cẖāl sacẖī aṯ nirmal nām sacẖā man bẖā▫i▫ā.
The devotees' lifestyle is true, and absolutely pure; the True Name is pleasing to their minds.


ਨਾਨਕ ਭਗਤ ਸੋਹਹਿ ਦਰਿ ਸਾਚੈ ਜਿਨੀ ਸਚੋ ਸਚੁ ਕਮਾਇਆ ॥੧॥
नानक भगत सोहहि दरि साचै जिनी सचो सचु कमाइआ ॥१॥
Nānak bẖagaṯ sohėh ḏar sācẖai jinī sacẖo sacẖ kamā▫i▫ā. ||1||
O Nanak, the those devotees, who practice Truth, and only Truth, look beauteous in the Court of the True Lord. ||1||


ਹਰਿ ਭਗਤਾ ਕੀ ਜਾਤਿ ਪਤਿ ਹੈ ਭਗਤ ਹਰਿ ਕੈ ਨਾਮਿ ਸਮਾਣੇ ਰਾਮ ॥
हरि भगता की जाति पति है भगत हरि कै नामि समाणे राम ॥
Har bẖagṯā kī jāṯ paṯ hai bẖagaṯ har kai nām samāṇe rām.
The Lord is the social class and honor of His devotees; the Lord's devotees merge in the Naam, the Name of the Lord.


ਹਰਿ ਭਗਤਿ ਕਰਹਿ ਵਿਚਹੁ ਆਪੁ ਗਵਾਵਹਿ ਜਿਨ ਗੁਣ ਅਵਗਣ ਪਛਾਣੇ ਰਾਮ ॥
हरि भगति करहि विचहु आपु गवावहि जिन गुण अवगण पछाणे राम ॥
Har bẖagaṯ karahi vicẖahu āp gavāvėh jin guṇ avgaṇ pacẖẖāṇe rām.
They worship the Lord in devotion, and eradicate self-conceit from within themselves; they understand merits and demerits.


ਗੁਣ ਅਉਗਣ ਪਛਾਣੈ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮੁ ਵਖਾਣੈ ਭੈ ਭਗਤਿ ਮੀਠੀ ਲਾਗੀ ॥
गुण अउगण पछाणै हरि नामु वखाणै भै भगति मीठी लागी ॥
Guṇ a▫ugaṇ pacẖẖāṇai har nām vakẖāṇai bẖai bẖagaṯ mīṯẖī lāgī.
They understand merits and demerits, and chant the Lord's Name; devotional worship is sweet to them.


ਅਨਦਿਨੁ ਭਗਤਿ ਕਰਹਿ ਦਿਨੁ ਰਾਤੀ ਘਰ ਹੀ ਮਹਿ ਬੈਰਾਗੀ ॥
अनदिनु भगति करहि दिनु राती घर ही महि बैरागी ॥
An▫ḏin bẖagaṯ karahi ḏin rāṯī gẖar hī mėh bairāgī.
Night and day, they perform devotional worship, day and night, and in the home of the self, they remain detached.


ਭਗਤੀ ਰਾਤੇ ਸਦਾ ਮਨੁ ਨਿਰਮਲੁ ਹਰਿ ਜੀਉ ਵੇਖਹਿ ਸਦਾ ਨਾਲੇ ॥
भगती राते सदा मनु निरमलु हरि जीउ वेखहि सदा नाले ॥
Bẖagṯī rāṯe saḏā man nirmal har jī▫o vekẖėh saḏā nāle.
Imbued with devotion, their minds remain forever immaculate and pure; they see their Dear Lord always with them.


ਨਾਨਕ ਸੇ ਭਗਤ ਹਰਿ ਕੈ ਦਰਿ ਸਾਚੇ ਅਨਦਿਨੁ ਨਾਮੁ ਸਮ੍ਹ੍ਹਾਲੇ ॥੨॥
नानक से भगत हरि कै दरि साचे अनदिनु नामु सम्हाले ॥२॥
Nānak se bẖagaṯ har kai ḏar sācẖe an▫ḏin nām samĥāle. ||2||
O Nanak, those devotees are True in the Court of the Lord; night and day, they dwell upon the Naam. ||2||


ਮਨਮੁਖ ਭਗਤਿ ਕਰਹਿ ਬਿਨੁ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਵਿਣੁ ਸਤਿਗੁਰ ਭਗਤਿ ਨ ਹੋਈ ਰਾਮ ॥
मनमुख भगति करहि बिनु सतिगुर विणु सतिगुर भगति न होई राम ॥
Manmukẖ bẖagaṯ karahi bin saṯgur viṇ saṯgur bẖagaṯ na ho▫ī rām.
The self-willed manmukhs practice devotional rituals without the True Guru, but without the True Guru, there is no devotion.


ਹਉਮੈ ਮਾਇਆ ਰੋਗਿ ਵਿਆਪੇ ਮਰਿ ਜਨਮਹਿ ਦੁਖੁ ਹੋਈ ਰਾਮ ॥
हउमै माइआ रोगि विआपे मरि जनमहि दुखु होई राम ॥
Ha▫umai mā▫i▫ā rog vi▫āpe mar janmėh ḏukẖ ho▫ī rām.
They are afflicted with the diseases of egotism and Maya, and they suffer the pains of death and rebirth.


ਮਰਿ ਜਨਮਹਿ ਦੁਖੁ ਹੋਈ ਦੂਜੈ ਭਾਇ ਪਰਜ ਵਿਗੋਈ ਵਿਣੁ ਗੁਰ ਤਤੁ ਨ ਜਾਨਿਆ ॥
मरि जनमहि दुखु होई दूजै भाइ परज विगोई विणु गुर ततु न जानिआ ॥
Mar janmėh ḏukẖ ho▫ī ḏūjai bẖā▫e paraj vigo▫ī viṇ gur ṯaṯ na jāni▫ā.
The world suffers the pains of death and rebirth, and through the love of duality, it is ruined; without the Guru, the essence of reality is not known.


ਭਗਤਿ ਵਿਹੂਣਾ ਸਭੁ ਜਗੁ ਭਰਮਿਆ ਅੰਤਿ ਗਇਆ ਪਛੁਤਾਨਿਆ ॥
भगति विहूणा सभु जगु भरमिआ अंति गइआ पछुतानिआ ॥
Bẖagaṯ vihūṇā sabẖ jag bẖarmi▫ā anṯ ga▫i▫ā pacẖẖuṯāni▫ā.
Without devotional worship, everyone in the world is deluded and confused, and in the end, they depart with regrets.

ਕੋਟਿ ਮਧੇ ਕਿਨੈ ਪਛਾਣਿਆ ਹਰਿ ਨਾਮਾ ਸਚੁ ਸੋਈ ॥
कोटि मधे किनै पछाणिआ हरि नामा सचु सोई ॥
Kot maḏẖe kinai pacẖẖāṇi▫ā har nāmā sacẖ so▫ī.
Among millions, there is scarcely one who realizes the Name of the True Lord.


ਨਾਨਕ ਨਾਮਿ ਮਿਲੈ ਵਡਿਆਈ ਦੂਜੈ ਭਾਇ ਪਤਿ ਖੋਈ ॥੩॥
नानक नामि मिलै वडिआई दूजै भाइ पति खोई ॥३॥
Nānak nām milai vadi▫ā▫ī ḏūjai bẖā▫e paṯ kẖo▫ī. ||3||
O Nanak, through the Naam, greatness is obtained; in the love of duality, all honor is lost. ||3||


ਭਗਤਾ ਕੈ ਘਰਿ ਕਾਰਜੁ ਸਾਚਾ ਹਰਿ ਗੁਣ ਸਦਾ ਵਖਾਣੇ ਰਾਮ ॥
भगता कै घरि कारजु साचा हरि गुण सदा वखाणे राम ॥
Bẖagṯā kai gẖar kāraj sācẖā har guṇ saḏā vakẖāṇe rām.
In the home of the devotees, is the joy of true marriage; they chant the Glorious Praises of the Lord forever.


ਭਗਤਿ ਖਜਾਨਾ ਆਪੇ ਦੀਆ ਕਾਲੁ ਕੰਟਕੁ ਮਾਰਿ ਸਮਾਣੇ ਰਾਮ ॥
भगति खजाना आपे दीआ कालु कंटकु मारि समाणे राम ॥
Bẖagaṯ kẖajānā āpe ḏī▫ā kāl kantak mār samāṇe rām.
He Himself blesses them with the treasure of devotion; conquering the thorny pain of death, they merge in the Lord.


ਕਾਲੁ ਕੰਟਕੁ ਮਾਰਿ ਸਮਾਣੇ ਹਰਿ ਮਨਿ ਭਾਣੇ ਨਾਮੁ ਨਿਧਾਨੁ ਸਚੁ ਪਾਇਆ ॥
कालु कंटकु मारि समाणे हरि मनि भाणे नामु निधानु सचु पाइआ ॥
Kāl kantak mār samāṇe har man bẖāṇe nām niḏẖān sacẖ pā▫i▫ā.
Conquering the thorny pain of death, they merge in the Lord; they are pleasing to the Lord's Mind, and they obtain the true treasure of the Naam.


ਸਦਾ ਅਖੁਟੁ ਕਦੇ ਨ ਨਿਖੁਟੈ ਹਰਿ ਦੀਆ ਸਹਜਿ ਸੁਭਾਇਆ ॥
सदा अखुटु कदे न निखुटै हरि दीआ सहजि सुभाइआ ॥
Saḏā akẖut kaḏe na nikẖutai har ḏī▫ā sahj subẖā▫i▫ā.
This treasure is inexhaustible; it will never be exhausted. The Lord automatically blesses them with it.


ਹਰਿ ਜਨ ਊਚੇ ਸਦ ਹੀ ਊਚੇ ਗੁਰ ਕੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਸੁਹਾਇਆ ॥
हरि जन ऊचे सद ही ऊचे गुर कै सबदि सुहाइआ ॥
Har jan ūcẖe saḏ hī ūcẖe gur kai sabaḏ suhā▫i▫ā.
The humble servants of the Lord are exalted and elevated, forever on high; they are adorned with the Word of the Guru's Shabad.


ਨਾਨਕ ਆਪੇ ਬਖਸਿ ਮਿਲਾਏ ਜੁਗਿ ਜੁਗਿ ਸੋਭਾ ਪਾਇਆ ॥੪॥੧॥੨॥
नानक आपे बखसि मिलाए जुगि जुगि सोभा पाइआ ॥४॥१॥२॥
Nānak āpe bakẖas milā▫e jug jug sobẖā pā▫i▫ā. ||4||1||2||
O Nanak, He Himself forgives them, and merges them with Himself; throughout the ages, they are glorified. ||4||1||2||

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