There is a beautiful story in Max Arthur Macauliffe’s Sikh history about the origins of Guru Amar Das’s Anand Sahib. The story goes that an old yogi, who had spent his life mediating in the mountains, felt frustrated with his lack of spiritual progress. As he neared the end of his days, the old yogi humbly decided to visit Guru Amar Das for instruction. When he met with the revered Guru, the yogi asked him a very simple question. “Oh Guruji, please tell me, what is the proper way to live life?” Guru Amar Das answered him by saying, “Go – leave your body and be reborn in my family. When you are reborn, then I will answer your question and teach you how to live life.”
The old yogi bowed and left the Guru’s presence. Soon after, while sitting in meditation, the yogi breathed his last. Some time after this event, Guru Amar Das’s son, Mohri, and his wife had a son. When the baby was born, Guru Amar Das recognized the soul of the yogi in his new grandson, and ordered the child to be brought before him right away. Upon seeing the baby, Guruji went into an ecstasy of consciousness, and sang the Anand Sahib. Afterward, he named the child Anand.
The Anand Sahib is the Guru’s answer to the question: what is the proper way to live life? Some people will spend many years in a deep spiritual search, turning away from family and the pressures of daily life to do so. Yet, at the end, they die empty handed, having never achieved what they hoped to achieve. Others will become so absorbed and focused in the earthly play, that they completely forget the journey that their own infinite spirit has come here to take. The Anand Sahib offers a simple wisdom of how to progress spiritually in the midst of the world. How to use the every day experiences that we face as we grow and mature to fuel our own development and devotion.
During the weekend of July 16th, there will be a weekend intensive on Guru Amar Das’s Anand Sahib at the Lotus Yoga Centre in Toronto, Canada. The workshop will begin on Friday evening, July 16th through Saturday and Sunday, July 17th and 18th. During the workshop, we will go deeply into Guru Amar Das’s Anand Sahib to understand the lessons contained within it. We will support our experience with chanting, meditation and cozy conversation.
Hope to see you there.
With Divine Light and Divine Love.
Ek Ong Kaar Kaur