by SS Siri Narayan Kaur Khalsa Fuda, Buffalo NY
For her 2008 Ministers’ exam, Siri Narayan Kaur of Buffalo, NY wrote a moving essay about the energy of Guru Gobind Singh serving her during a deeply challenging time in her life. We thought it relevant to the August theme and received her permission to reprint it.
Siri Narayan Kaur writes, “25 years after the event, it still brings me to tears, both for the sacrifice requested and God’s mercy in ultimately not requiring it.” Here is her story:
The year after she graduated from high school, my middle daughter Hari Simran Kaur (aka Melanie) traveled around the country following the Grateful Dead. We were deeply concerned and prayed constantly for her protection. She would call regularly and keep us informed and sometimes ask for money. During that time she often practiced yoga with several friends wherever they would park outside the concerts. Other people would join them, and so she found herself teaching yoga classes on the road.
Suddenly there was a period of several weeks when we didn’t hear from her. As more time passed I became more and more frightened. I had no way to contact her except to reach out to her during daily Sadhana. One morning I was preparing for Gurdwara with one of the yoga students following Sadhana.
I was reading the Ardas. When I reached the passage “and gave their dear children” I broke down completely. I could not stop crying and could hardly complete the reading. In the open prayer, I humbly asked God to give me the strength and grace to bear whatever might be His will, that I might have the strength of Guru Gobind Singh.
Although it was Subagh Kaur’s turn to take the hukam, she suggested I do it. I chose one of the volumes, chanted Guru Guru Wahe Guru, Guru Ram Das Guru several times, and then Aad Guray Nameh, Jugaad Guray Nameh, Sat Guray Nameh, Siri Guru Devay Nameh and opened to the hukam.
I don’t remember what it was and have never been able to find it since. But I do remember the sense of the text, which was that to those who accept the will of God, all is given. I immediately felt a great peace. I was not sure that my daughter was safe, but only that whatever happened, it was God’s will, and we were both in His grace. Indeed, everything was His grace.
Later that afternoon our daughter called. Why hadn’t she called before? For no reason, really; just being young, and involved with her own life. But that morning she had been doing yoga, and a young man had joined the group. He told her after the set that he was very grateful for her being there, that he had been a Sikh and had left the Dharma and was just drifting, and that when he heard her chanting Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo, he knew God was calling him, and that was what she called to share with me.
Two weeks later my daughter returned home. She completed college and then moved to Portland, Oregon, where she studied massage therapy, taught yoga classes, and kept contact with SS Holy Kaur and her husband. Hari Simran Kaur, the healer, became her guide and mentor. At Hari Simran Kaur’s suggestion, she did a 40-day sadhana with Holy Kaur, which became a 60-day sadhana. Within days of completing that practice, she moved to a new apartment in Portland and quickly met and married the young man who lived across the hall. It’s nine years later. They now live a few blocks from me in Buffalo and have graced our family with two grandchildren, a girl and a boy.
The Example of Courage
In some cases, we are required to make the sacrifice, but in other cases, it’s the willingness to do so that is required. I am eternally grateful for the great blessing of family. I am also deeply grateful to Guru Gobind Singh for showing me the example of how to experience royal courage in our little day-to-day lives.
I’m not sure if this makes any sense, but I feel that if I had not had the example of Guru Gobind Singh and his sons, I might not have been able to accept the call to have faith. And if I had resisted, perhaps it would have taken something more drastic to understand that every aspect of our existence is in the Inexplicable.
When our yoga students are troubled, I often tell them this story and help them take a hukam. Although we often counsel, we believe that the Siri Guru Granth Sahib, even in the English version, is our best and greatest counselor. For this also we give gratitude to Guru Gobind Singh.
About the Author
SS Siri Narayan Kaur Khalsa Fuda has taught Kundalini Yoga in Buffalo, New York for nearly 40 years, and has served as a Minister of Sikh Dharma for 24 years. She served as a member of Khalsa Council for 10 years. She worked in the Buffalo Public Schools as a teacher of English/Language Arts and Exceptional Education for more than 25 years. Siri Narayan Kaur was an Adjunct Professor at SUNY College of Education at Buffalo. She taught a Creative Writing module at KWTC for several summers and has had published two books of poetry, Unconditional Love: The Sapphire Poems (Textile Bridge Press) and Dancing with the Guru (White Lion Press).