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Guest Editorial

A Viable Course of Action

Gajindar Singh


An eventful year, 2008, witnessed a surcharge of devotion and emotions celebrating completion of three hundred years of the pontificate of Guru Granth Sahib. In the turbulent period encompassing the three centuries of Sikh history, the fledgling nation has amply proved its ability to face the worst and emerge glorious time and again, whether it was the horrors of genocide and repeated attempts to annihilate the very religion of ‘Nanak Prastan’ of the eighteenth century, the glorious establishment of empire and its treacherous end in the nineteenth century or the rejuvenated Singh Sabha movement and the successful Gurdwara liberation struggle in the twentieth century. Three hundred years of the Guru Granth Sahib have been full of events, which have given direction to the ‘quom’ to proceed on its way to progress. The tragic events of the partition of the country in 1947 with its wholesale devastation, particularly of the Sikhs and the terrorizing experiences of the bloody ’84 have only reinforced the determination of the Sikh people in increased devotion and love of the Guru and Gurbani. It has justified the solemn trust reposed in the Panth by Guru Gobind Singh when he entrusted the Guru Khalsa to the guidance and direction of the Granth.

Year-long celebrations and huge expenditure in millions stirred the chords of the ordinary Sikh devotees who rediscovered the magic and spirit of Gurbani and its right appreciation instead of daily dutiful but mechanical mouthing of the holy texts. There has been a spate of resolutions and pledges to improve facilities, services and opportunities in the conduct of the Panthic affairs, in the fields of general education, research and technology which can have large scale ramifications in the bearing and trend of the destiny of the community, if steered carefully.

The fourth century of the Guru Granth Sahib begins with excitement for the future goals. The need of the hour is coordination and collaboration of the various agencies together to reduce wastage and ensure maximum utilization of energy generated by the event into a wave of resurgence, beneficial to the Sikhs in general and our Youth in particular. Our future plans should concentrate on building up a strong and formidable, efficient Youth power which can face the fast changing values of 21st century along with giant strides in education, primary as well as advanced courses in technology and specialization with management skills to face competition of the highly trained cadres in the world.

The corridors of power in today’s world are increasing and becoming wider and easier to traverse if properly planned with the right aptitude and correct attitude to position oneself to the new challenges. Guru Granth Sahib is ever beckoning to the seeker to develop the mental posture of high thinking and evolving chaste living. The Sikhs have excelled in every field by mere infixion of the sublime gurmat doctrine, and what can be achieved by full commitment and total dedication to the philosophy of the Guru Granth Sahib, cannot be imagined.

Our Youth is yearning for Panthic guidance, aid and assistance, for facilities and opportunities to forge ahead into the main stream. It is for our elders, our leaders and those at the helm of affairs to seriously chalk out a progressive plan of action to facilitate the modes and forms to the youth awaiting a fair chance to climb those heights. We have ample funds, place and man-power to organize ourselves into rejuvenating the community into purposeful activities for a brighter future. What is required now is to systematically proceed towards the cherished goal.

There is ample land attached, not fully utilized with our major Gurdwaras, where industrial and craft units, big and small, can be located to produce needful goods affording opportunities to Sikh youth with gainful employment. Polytechnics and Engineering institutions can be established in abundance so that young people do not miss any chance due to a dearth of break.

The standard of our educational institutions must vie with the best schools in the country. Wherever this has been attempted in earnest, for instance, the Baru Sahib experiment, Sri Guru Harkishen Sahib Public Schools and others, it has given excellent results. The need is to widely organize it gradually at village level and use ample Gurdwara funds judiciously. Each Gurdwara should be a beacon of activating and energizing the dormant potency of our people with the sole objective to improve the character and moral fiber of our people. The sky is the limit.

 

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