Gurus and ritual practices – Please respond to one or both of the following discussion prompts
1. Describe in some detail one of the Sikh gurus introduced in our text. What characteristics of this person do you find most interesting or appealing?
2. Describe in some detail one Sikh practice or ceremony discussed in our text. Examples include the amrit ceremony, langar, daily prayers, and kirtan.
respond to following statement:
This ceremony is conducted by five baptized people representing the the five Beloved Ones (Panj Piaras) who offer their heads to Guru Gobind Singh. They are expected to be exemplary members of the Khalsa who know the daily prayers by heart. The ceremony begins with a prayer to the Guru Granth Sahib and reading of guidance from it for would-be initiates. The officiants then recite the five daily prayers a process which may take up to two hours while slowly stirring sugar-sweetened water in an iron bowl to turn it into amrit (nectar). The amrit is stirred with a khanda, a double-edge sword symbolizing the disintegration of egotism and demolishing of social barriers such as caste and gender discrimination. When the amrit is prepared and prayed over, five handfuls are given to each initiate to drink, it is sprinkled five times on their hair, and it is splashed five times onto their eyes. After each time, the initiate is told to say, ”The Khalsa is God’s, and the victory is God’s. Each the drinks from the bowl,turn by turn. At the end of the ceremony they are told that they are all children of the same family, with Guru Gobind Singh as their father and his wife Mata Sahib Kaur as their mother, and that they are spiritual residents of Anandpur Sahib. The Amrit ceremony ends as it began, with the central prayer of Sikhs, but now with mew meaning for initiates. ( Fisher,2014)