Modern Sikh Girls
|From woman, man is born; |
within woman, man is conceived; to woman he is engaged and married.
These are words that were uttered by the founder of Sikhism, Sri Guru Nanak Dev in about 1499 found in the Sri Guru Granth Sahib in Raag Asa Mehal 1, page 473. So for Sikhs from that period, there has been compulsion to treat women as equals and gender discrimination was not allowed. Guru Gobind Singh's also confirmed the equality by saying the line "Manas Kee Jaat Sabhey Ekey Pehchanboo" - "Regard all of human race as one".
However, the true message of the Guru has not been understood by society even today more than 500 years after these famous sacred words were said by the holy Guru.
Killing Kesh (Long hair)
- Main article: Uncut Hairs
"Kesh" is one of the five kakkars of Sikhism. In Sikhism to cut hair is considered a sin and by doing so is called Patit. Today both girls and boys believe in artificial look; the true image as given by God is found to be lacking. So they want to give their own look by cutting hair in different wild styles. Kanga is provided to set up the hair and keep them clean but in vain. Thus they are disobeying the Guru's order. Although this applies to both boys and girls, the girls are more aggressive and more extreme with this habit; seldom do you find a girl who tries to maintain the kesh - the long hair on the scalp; they quickly reach for the barber's scissor as soon as possible.
- Main article: Human Hair
Hair is a characteristic feature of mammals, commonly known as "Hairy quadrupeds" - a group of animals that mark the climax of evolution. Mammals are also the dominant animals in the world today, due partly to their ability to regulate body temperature in the face of variations in environmental temperature. This requires regulation of heat production and heat loss by the body. Hair plays an important role in regulating heat loss from the body.
Man Lost Tail for Hair
Human kind marks the climax of evolution even among mammals, and has the most complex and highly developed brain, and in normal circumstances, the longest hair on head. This feature cannot be without reason. It cannot be a matter of mere chance or a mistake by nature, because if the tails has been lost the hair too could have been lost. On the contrary, human head-hair has increased manifold as compared to other mammals.
Body's Extended Surface Area
This dense and long growth of hair on the head shows that the body is trying to increase the surface area for some particular function. Such a trend to increase the surface area is seen in every system of the body, e.g. the highly coiled intestines with finger-like villi on their inner surfaces for absorption of digested food;etc
Functions of Hair
Hair performs a variety of functions. Some are :-
- Insulation and Protective Layer: Form an insulating coat on the body. Trap a layer of still air just outside the skin, and thereby reduce loss of heat by radiation and convection. Absorb harmful radiations from the sun. Protect from sun and rain.
- Filter and Diverter: Keep out coarse dust particles, as in eyelashes, hair in the nasal chambers and ear canals. Eyebrows prevent water or perspiration from falling into eyes, due to their particular direction.
- Ball Bearings: Axillary and pubic hair lessen friction between limbs and body, and between limbs during locomotion.
- Evaporation: Axillary hair provide large surface area for evaporation of sweat.
- Beautify: Beautify the body (otherwise why people do not shave off their hair from the head completely; bald men are desperate and would pay any price to get back hair on their heads).
- Males Stand Out: Beard and moustaches are for differentiation of sex. Mostly males are decorated in nature, e.g. lion, peacock and other birds, deer, etc.
- Antenas and Sensors: Vibrissae are sensory hair, tactile in nature and useful in dark burrows. Provide acute sensory mechanism to defend the body. Also, by standing on their ends, thereby making the body look bigger.
Many people disobey Guru's order. But there is no actual sin in Sikhism; only self improvement and belief in Hukam - God's mission for us. Sin is a wrong which needs to be corrected by a payment or some sort of penance.... so penance is like, paying for a sin. This is not recognised as such in Sikhi. The Guru tells us that we are all sinners; that is why we have had to be reborn - So apart from a very few who have come to Earth to improve it, most of us are here for our own spiritual evolution or self-improvement.
A Sikh is someone who:
- 1) Believes in the Guru Granth Sahib ji as the eternal guru
- 2) is working towards becoming a Khalsa - "spiritually pure".
Dress sense and modesty
Today many Sikhs feel helpless to see the dressing sense of young modern Sikh boys and girls. The growing tendency among the younger generation is to vividly show body contours; modesty has taken flight and near-nudity is taking close hold. This is a unhealthy devlopment in Sikh society. Although it may offend many Sikh girls, the tendency to wear dresses that are highly revealing does not adhere to the concept of decency and modesty that is necessary in Sikhi.
The message of equality that has been spread by Guru Nanak does not literally mean "equality of dressing". This message of equality does not mean that boys and girls should wear similar clothes. The bodies of boys and girls become markedly different after the age of puberty and accordingly, this change means that a different approach in the way the different genders dress.
In Sikhism indecent and highly revealing clothes are not acceptable as the Gurus have asked for decent and modest way of dressing. The Guru reminds us to remember God at all times and not to become intoxicated in the material world (Maya) around us.
Whatever you wear, remember the Lord who has given you everything
|I may anoint my limbs with sandalwood oil (ie. apply perfume).|
I may dress up and wear silk and satin clothes.
In this shabad, the Guru reminds us of our first mission in life - to remember the Lord who is the giver of everything; if you adorn yourself and forget God, it is like ""Without the Naam, all occupations are useless, like the decorations on a dead body" (SGGS p 240). So first, even before you decide what to wear - always remember the Lord who has been merciful and has given us this beautiful life and body. If you have done this then take the next step to wear the clothes that you find pleasing and with which you feel your Lord will be happy with. If you do this, then you will certainly find peace and satisfaction in your life. Do not dress to please others, dress to please your Lord!
Make the humble dress the fence!
|Make your mind the farmer, good deeds the farm, modesty the water, and your body the field.|
Let the Lord's Name be the seed, contentment the plow, and your humble dress the fence.
- "Make your mind the farmer, good deeds the farm" - Make your mind work the field of this body; work hard; get up early and activate the body; be constructive and plant good crops (good thoughts and deeds) in your life.
- "...modesty the water, and your body the field" - Pour modesty in abundance on your crops; be modest in your dealings with others and in your own ways and manners;
- "Let the Lord's Name be the seed, contentment the plow" - Repeats the Lord's name; be content with what you have; don't lust for more and more; calm your mind and be satisfied with what you have;
- "... and your humble dress the fence" - Make your humble dress code a fence - wear adequate clothes to protect the modesty of the body
- "Doing deeds of love, the seed shall sprout" - If you live with love in your heart, the good deeds will sprout and these sprouting plants will bear fruits;
- "... and you shall see your home flourish" - As a consequence of the hard work, doing good deeds, being modest in your ways, the result will be very fruitful and you will become satisfied and flourish in life.