by SS Sangeet Kaur Khalsa, Phoenix, Arizona
2022 (Fourth Quarter)
As I completed our current Sikh Minister exam, this phrase came immediately to my mind. We (our community of Sikhs and Yogis) are a Force for Good in this World. We must preserve it.
How do I know this? And how do we apply it in our lives as Sikhs and members of the Sikh Sangat?
I have been a minister for almost 30 years, a lifelong counselor and a teacher. I am responsible for what I have and have not done. In my 83 years in this life I have become a Force for Good with thousands of people.
The first time I sat in Gurdwara in 1978 and heard my first Hukam, I knew I was home. A minister questioned my taking vows. I was new. I told him I had talked with the Guru and the Guru accepted me.
Every Guru, every saint, every pandit whose voice echoes in the Siri Guru Granth Sahib lived as a Force for Good. So when we read the Guru and chant we re-awaken that Force in us, day after day.
As Sikhs, over the past 2-3 years we have lived through two “pandemics” – the swirling stories of the good and bad done by our renowned leader-teacher, Yogi Bhajan, and the international health crisis growing from the coronavirus. In our ashrams, Gurdwaras, and community gatherings worldwide, many of us have become isolated, divided and negatively impacted. In Phoenix, Arizona, we have seen our two large Kundalini Yoga studios closed and our yoga teacher trainings dropped. We have faced challenges among ourselves, our students, our families and friends. Many of our spiritual sisters and brothers do not speak easily with each other as we once did. Some have left or drifted away.
“What do you think?” and “What is the truth?” are frequent questions asked. I rely on 40 years of living and sharing “the teachings,” knowing that all have worked for me and for so many others. Long before Yogi Bhajan mentioned the use of Kirtan Kriya in cases of dementia, I used it with older students and clients living in serious states of dementia. It proved its truth with me and them.
So what is “the truth?” The Truth is “what works for the Good. The Good for me and for others, in small and large ways and in consistent use.”
There are many examples. Rising and going to bed while chanting our Sikh prayers builds the good in me. Saying “thank you” to others and carrying a smile builds the goodness in others as well as me.
As Guru Nanak said, “truth is high but living truthfully is higher still.”
Now we all face challenges in our communities. No matter what shape any community is in, we should find ways to come together – to chant, to pray, to prepare meals consciously, to read from the Guru, to help others in need of food or meditation. That is Being a Force for Good in Action, living the “Will of Nanak” in our lives.
Now I am asking each and all of you who believe in Nanak’s Path to step forward, reach out to others and live as a Force for Good. Not to be liked or believed, but to find others to listen to you and share with you and allow you to listen to and share themselves.
All who share honestly in this way are part of the Force for Good.
On most weekdays I am called on as a counselor by students and others who seek help. They need a Force for Good, a Force to re-awaken them to Their Own Goodness. That is my ongoing mission.
Four years ago when I “went home” after surgery, I was told that I had done my destiny and should reside with others who had finished theirs. I was in the arms of Mother Mary. Jesus and Guru Ram Das were there. And so many others of so many paths. We call them “the Saints.” I humbly asked to be sent back—others still in form needed help. I was told it would be hard but that did not scare me. There was work to be done and I could do it.
I will never forget the force that sent me back into form again. Even in the most difficult time when my beloved husband Hari Nam Singh was for many days in the hospital on the verge of death, I prayed, chanted and have never regretted coming back. He came through and so did I.
Now my job – and yours if you take it on – is to reach out across divisions and complaints in our communities and find ways to re-awaken that Force for Good everywhere.
We must re-open communications, sharing hopes, angers, fears, all who we are, honestly.
We are all a Force for Good. Let’s reach out, stand together now, share ourselves and move forward.
Community will thrive anew.
I am a Sikh of the True Guru.
I am One with you, one among the growing Force for Good.
Humbly your servant,
S.S. Sangeet Kaur Khalsa
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
SS Sangeet Kaur Khalsa joined the Brooklyn, NY Sikh Sangat in the late 1970s. She became a Sikh Dharma Minister in 1993. In 1987 Sangeet Kaur moved to Phoenix, Arizona and began her counseling practice with an advanced degree in Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP). She started leading all levels of Kundalini Yoga Teacher Trainings in the 1990s. In 1990 Sangeet Kaur launched a series of yoga-based Womanheart® Healing Retreats for Women. During that time she earned her mastership in Reiki healing, wrote her popular relationship book “Womanheart® -Healing Our Relationships, Loving Ourselves,” and recorded two meditation CDs. She married long-time friend Hari Nam Singh at Ram Das Puri in 2002. She continues to teach beginner through mastery-level classes in Kundalini Yoga, Gong healing therapy, and her Blessings Code™ Numerology system.