Friday, December 3, 2010

Whatever dad! If you gonna be rude. Where did that cute little girl go?

Well this post was written a while back, may be six to eight months ago and she is still 19 but the 12 years old turned 13 in September, but just thought I will just post it. It may be a little corny but decided to do it anyways for the heck of it. So here it goes:

Last week woke up again around 1:30AM , so instead of staring at the wall laying in bed, got up and started to write a few things about what kind of advice to give my 19 year old daughter, who is going through some internal turbulence times because of tension in the family. Also, thought it may also help the other two kids (15 year old son and 12 year old son) when the need be or if they ever happen to visit the blog and read some of my posts or for that matter any one else who may want to use it or and add on to it.

Now you have to remember, this advice is coming from a man who just started being a Sikh at a mid life stage, who is married to a non-Sikh wife and has children growing up in a Sikh/Indian/Punjabi/American/Christian/Caucasian environment in California and trying to stay as much religiously neutral as possible. So please let us try to keep sarcasm or judgments or negative comments to minimum. I know many of the questions people may ask or criticize about who is a better Sikh or not etc, what does rehat maryada say, what Gurbani says and on and on. Anyways, I hope I am able to verbalize one day to each kid what I am writing below a series of questions/ comments/thoughts (or as my wife would it "Indian one liners" or advices) to ask, discuss and share with my children and hope they can find answers to these one day to apply in their lives:

1) Who are your role models and why (men, women in past and present?

2) What do they know about Chardi Kala and why staying in Chardi Kala is important?

3) Why stay content and aim high in life?

4) Why be compassionate and caring? This becomes tricky and hard one for me as I start thinking about vegetarianism vs. meat eating. I don't know the answer.

5) What are sat(truth), santokh (contentment) and gyan (meditation or divine knowledge)?

6) Why work hard and how to enjoy fruits of hard labor by sharing?

7) Why stay in His will?

8) Why "treat others like how one wants to be treated"? To me this is karma/newtons' law about action and reaction being equal and opposite. Again, this becomes harder as one relates it to vegetarianism vs. meat eating. And, again I don't know the answer.

8) How to keep your "life account" positive and don't expect quick results or fruits of your actions in life, as they will come based on your actions? (as they say in Punjabi "kar Seva milega meva")

9) You are human. Be proud and be thankful for God given body, mind and soul. For me Guru ji is the connection and it is important to establish that relation.

10) Why not "Gossip" and talk bad behind people's back?

11) Keys to Happiness:
a) compassion
b) selfless service to others
c) Being truthful to yourself and others (why? Because i think truthful people have no fear, and it is that simple)
d) Contentment
e) hardwork especially physical (sweat of brow). Seva in Gurdwara like clean up, kitchen work are great ways to exercise, stay healthy thru hard work and serve at the same time.

12) Keys to Peace:
a) meditate daily on God's name
b) stay in his will
c) "Can not see God in all, can not see God at all" or " I see no stranger". Or As Gurbani teaches "Na ko bairee no hee baigana - No one is my enemy and no one is stranger to me"
d) Learn to let go and forgive others. See past their mistakes.

13) Keys to staying Healthy:
a) "Early to bed, early to rise...." or better yet "Amrit Vela"
b) Knowing what you put in your body and what the body needs. Staying away from drugs, alcohol, meat and tobacco. Coffee, tea, soda pop? Up to you. Listen to your body.
c) Eating natural, healthy and in moderation. Even I feel like a little hypocrite saying this to others, but at least this is my aim. Is it time for those delicious (salty, sugary, fatty) snacks like pakoras, kheer, ice cream, chocolate, gulab jamuns yet?

d)Walk or jog daily. We eat three times a day so why not pray or be thankful to God at least three times a day, and exercise three times a day?

e) Khalsa lifestyle (saint-solider or miri-piri) is best to stay fit. Again, I would be called a little hypocrite here as well since I become lazy from time to time. They both (saint and soldier) require discipline, courage, control over five thieves, and keeping five vices.

14) What are five evils to control?
a) kam - lust
b) krodh - anger
c) lobh - greed
d) moh - Emotional Wordly attachment
e) ahankar - false pride or ego

15) What are five vices to practice:
a) sat - truth
b) santokh - contentment
c) dya - compassion
e) nimrata - humility or humble
f) pyar - love

Knowledge is good but without above five vices, it means or serves nothing. As once a wise Sikh said "A donkey with a loadful of books on his back doesn't become a pandit or scholar". And, knowledge (gyan) comes thru Gurbani.

17) Salvation or liberation or mukti comes from doing above no matter what religion you choose to follow (It is called "karm dharm de adheen kar - doing the right deeds or taking the right actions and following the right path (karma under dharma). Sikhi is the way for me and is best. Gurbani has all of life's answers and there are many paths to his door."

Golden Rule that works for me:

"Everything comes, goes and happens through His glance and His grace and your karma in life. The Key is to have faith."

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