Archive for October, 2008

If you’re in California, drive to Stockton this weekend and check out the Gurmat Sangeet Darbar, commemorating the 300th anniversary of the Sri Guru Granth Sahib. Some of the best musicians in the world will gather to render hymns from the Granth in melodious raags for all to enjoy. I’m rather sad I can’t make it — I have to be in Boston this weekend. Perhaps you can say hi to my brother for me, he’ll be there!

  • Filed under: News
  • Dr. I. J. Singh has written a nice post on Washington I’ve submitted it to Sikh Social News, check it there. ;)

    I also look forward to seeing Dr. I. J. Singh this afternoon at Know Thy Neighbor ‘08 at the Sikh Sabha gurdwara. ;)

  • Filed under: News
  • This is really neat. Notable hollywood-types are using tools at their disposal to get people to stop saying, “that’s so gay.” They point to statistics in schools (similar to the bullying statistics meticulously produced by the Sikh Coalition) as a clear indicator that this proactive campaign is needed.

    At minimum, the ads will get kids and adults thinking about the issue, which is a positive step.

    As a Sikh, I applaud these ads as they promote unity and respect for all. I think the Sikh community can learn a lot from this — imagine we had a similar campaign targeting slurs like ‘Osama’, ‘terrorist,’ and ‘towelhead.’

    Aside: Speaking of “Towelhead,” don’t you think the folks that made this ad campaign would respectfully oppose a movie titled, “That’s so gay”? Obviously they would.

    Some Sikhs say that we shouldn’t be doing these sorts of things, we should learn how to take a joke, and that expressing concern makes us look bad. But the core issue, as these ads point out, is the experience of children in schools. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect. Again, the ads have a positive effect, and we can learn from it as we stand in solidarity against ignorance and hatred.

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  • Filed under: News
  • Check out the rockin’ campaign of Harpreet Singh for Richmond City Council. He’s already been on the council for the last two years, and he’s up for reelection.

    He’s got a great slogan:

    “When you wear a turban to school everyday, you learn to stand up when you stand out.”

    Here’s the full literature.

    His campaign is on the cutting edge — see a full set of YouTube videos posted by his supporters. Good luck Harpreet, let us know how we can help.

    Some You Tube Videos.

    Harpreet Speaks to the Contra Costa Times:

    Harpreet puts the City First:

    It’ll be interesting to follow this campaign. Thanks to Satinder Singh for the tip!

  • Filed under: Political
  • iTunes Kirtan has Explicit Lyrics

    As you probably know, there’s quite a bit of kirtan available for purchase on iTunes. To my surprise, while surfing the iTunes store today, I happened across some kirtan erroneously marked as “Parental Advisory: Explicit Lyrics.” I just thought it was funny — obviously there are no explicit lyrics in kirtan. Or are there? ;)

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  • Filed under: News
  • Upcoming SikhRI Webinars

    Here are the upcoming SikhRI webinars. They all seem pretty awesome, I’ll try to check out at least a few. You can register online here:

    SikhRI Webinar Registration

    And here’s a screenshot from the registration site:

    My humble challenge to the speakers is to present some new, engaging content, or present content in a new, compelling way, as many of us have heard each one of these speakers many times in the past decade. I have no doubt that they will deliver and I admire and respect all of them. ;)

    Furthermore, SikhRI is hosting a fundraiser in the New York City area, on October 25th from 7-10pm. As you can see, SikhRI does some amazingly progressive, professional, Guru-centered work. For more details on the fundraiser, which will feature a talk by Harinder Singh, contact Mandhir Singh at 201-936-3838 or mandhir.singh [at]

  • Filed under: News
  • Election Roadmap in Punjabi

    South Asian Americans Leading Together has recently produced an election roadmap for the upcoming US election, in Punjabi. It’s both informational and entertaining. We need more information like this, eh?


    Thanks to Sonny Singh and Simran Singh for forwarding the link.

  • Filed under: News
  • Learn Sikh Kirtan - Jap Man Satnam

    Here’s something new that I just did in the last half-hour — made a YouTube video of a shabad, so anyone can watch and learn.

    You can view the full shabad and translation here on SikhiToTheMax: Jap Man Satnam

    Here’s how it works — the asthai (the refrain) is “Jap Man Satnam, Sada Satnam, satnam, satnam, satnam, satnam”

    The antra is in two parts - 1) “Eccha purakh sarab sukhdata har,” and 2) “ja ke vas hai kaamdena.”
    All other lines are sung like the antra, except, “Jeh har simran bhaiya, teh oopad gat keeni, nit dhiaye har purakh niranjana” which is actually split into two part 1’s — and then a part 2.

    Why did I choose this shabad? My aunt in Kenya wanted to learn it. :) So what does it mean? Well, the shabad is written by Guru Ram Dass, and in it, he asks that his mind (’man’) always be focused on the True Name (’satnam’).

    Anyway let me know if you actually use this video to learn and perform the shabad. I also take requests. ;)

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  • Filed under: Kirtan, Videos
  • Sikh Sabha Gurudwara, my local gurudwara, is hosting a “know thy neighbor” event next Saturday. As I’ve said before, Sikh Sabha is super-proactive in organizing relevant, forward-thinking events, and this one is no exception. I’m looking forward to it — we even have Dr. I. J. Singh coming down to be a speaker.

    Hope to see you there!

  • Filed under: News
  • Here’s the info for the next seminar in Philly, which in all likelihood, I will attend. The keynote speaker is an avid astronomer, so it’s bound to be pretty cool. :)

    Seminar #19

    “Sikh Religion and Science – Guru Ji Describes The Universe”

    Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa,
    Waheguru Ji Ke Fateh,

    You are cordially invited, with family and friends, to participate in our 19th seminar “Sikh Religion and Science - Guru Ji Describes The Universe” in the Sikh Heritage Seminar Series.

    Date: October 5, 2008 (Sunday) 12:00 – 1:30 p.m.
    Discussion Session: 3:00 – 3:30 p.m.

    Location: Philadelphia Sikh Society Gurudwara Sahib, 6708 Garden Court, Millbourne, (near Philadelphia, PA) PA 19082. Phone: 610-352-4733

    Moderator: Manjit Kaur, Southampton PA

    Speaker: Sardar Sutinder Singh, Lawrenceville, NJ
    Sardar Jasbir Singh, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

    The topic of this seminar Sikh Religion and Science - Guru Ji Describes The Universe will give us and our future generation an opportunity to understand the Sikh philosophy. Our youth has a lot of concerns and confusion in today’s age of science with regards to understanding the religion. Lack of knowledge and understanding creates doubts in their minds about the need and importance of spiritual growth and following the religion.

    I request all of you to pass this information about this upcoming seminar to all your family members and friends, and encourage young children to attend. Make sure to join the discussion session after Langar. These sessions are a very important part of our seminars; we can discuss, learn, and have a chance to share our views with each other.

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  • Filed under: News