To celebrate my birthday I woke up extra early this morning, did my banis, meditation and yoga. I then helped Arjan get the kids off to school and then sat down at the computer at home. I’m on the computer a lot, but this time my task wasn’t the normal one. I setup the SikhNet digital audio recorder and one by one started reading/recording the english translation of 30 different shabads from the Siri Guru Granth Sahib. It was quite a meditation!
I am used to reading the english translation when we hear a Shabad being played in Gurdwara or when the Hukamnama is read, but this time it was very different. I had headphones on my head, hearing every little sound in the room, as I did my best to read slowly, clearly and accurately as possible. If I made a mistake with a shabad I had to delete that audio recording and start over again. Sometimes, I kept making mistakes and must have re-recorded the same translation about 8 times! So, this made me have a certain hyper focus to every word. This hyper focus was quite nice because I was able to absorb and feel every word of the Guru’s message, and it had a much deeper impact then just reading quickly.
After reading for about an hour and a half the themes and wisdom of the Guru’s message shined bright. It’s so simple yet so profound! It’s like one of those "Duh!" moments where something is so obvious yet we choose to ignore it and go along with life in ignorance. I love Gurbani, yet due to my lack of comprehension of the Guru’s original words I don’t always get this type of appreciation.
I am grateful to be working on this project with other sevadhars to record an audio version of the english translation of the Siri Guru Granth Sahib. I know it will take a good amount of time, but it is time that I will cherish!
You can experience this yourself, by going online and reading very slowly and deliberately, enjoying and tasting each word of the Guru. Try it and experience for yourself! Make it a daily discipline to read from the Guru every day. If you can’t read from an Akhand Path at your Gurdwara do a Sahej Path at your own pace at home. Don’t procrastinate and delay!
One of the themes of the Guru’s message in the Shabds I was reading today was about getting caught up in wordly matters and life wasting away, going through the cycle of birth and death in pain and misery. We all have to have the strength and discipline to break through these cycles that keep us locked in. We have to take action and take control of our mind that wants to just drink in the maya of every day life.
So, today rather then wishing me a "happy birthday" make a commitment to yourself to feed your soul in some way. As we all connect with the infinite God, more and more we feel the oneness with each other. Let us each take the time to fill our glass so that we can in turn have something to share with others.
Be a sponge and absorb the name of God by recitation of Gurbani! Clean away your karmas and wash away the dirt. I can just see the new TV show of the Sikh version of SpongeBob SquarePants coming out!