Thursday, August 22, 2019

Am I Growing Up?!

Okay, so I'm sitting here while writing this and trying to process my thoughts. So bare with me if the flow isn't smooth, but here goes nothing.

I am 20 and will be 21 in October. Sometimes, I think people forget that. Sometimes I think I forget that. But you know what? That's okay. Because, well,...

I'm happy. I am finally able to get rid of my old driver's license with that picture that looks nothing like me now (lol). And while most people my age are excited about being able to legally drink, I'm getting finally send in my application for my concealed carry license and make my first firearm purchase.

But also

I'm stressed. I am a junior in college, and I'm stressed about needing to land an internship. With my lack of real job experience and an "eh" GPA, having success in that arena will be tough. Sometimes I think impossible. I wish that employers understood that my resume DOES NOT reflect my talents or accomplishments accurately. Worse comes to worst, I'll just have to camp out under a bridge somewhere in Austin (lol).

But also

I'm restless. I'm ready to travel to the world. I've been ready to travel the world. The only thing that is holding me back isn't necessarily money, but my parent's (mostly my mother's) suspicious of the outside world. What I don't think she realizes is that I'm just as unsafe here in the United States (where we are having mass shootings every other week) as in India. Heck, at this point I think northern India might be 5% safer than here. One thing I will say though is that unless it is the US or Canada, I'm never moving out of the country. All I want is a simple home, a decent Sikh husband, animals, and at least two kids. You hear that Waheguru ji?! That really ain't too much to ask.

But also

I'm passionate. I know this has to be apart of my life purpose because I never in my entire life put so much effort into one thing for a long period of time. Whether it's this website, the Youtube channel, or the Facebook page, I don't need the motivation to maintain it, and I feel satisfaction by putting my heart, soul, and mind into it. And I firmly believe it is going to be something big, something impactful. I just got to be patient and let it grow.

But also

I'm regretful. There are some things I've done (or said) that I could have done better over these last two years. And there are some things that I shouldn't have done at all. Whether it is in regards to my academics, my social life, the Sikh community, my finances, etc. there are some places where I screwed up. But then again, screwing up is apart of life. All I can do is learn from the experience, move on, and hope the situation resolves itself.

But also

I'm thankful. Thankful to those who have helped me along this journey of mine for the last two years. Some have come and gone. Some have come and gone then come again. And some have been with me throughout the whole time period. If it hadn't been for these people, not only would I not be a Sikh today, I probably would have done moved back to Fort Worth by now. So with both hands folded, I say "Dhanvaad ji".

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

We are not a product of fearful men

So I just finished watching a documentary called "Free Solo", ever since it's pre release some of my friends told me "You have to watch it".  For some reason I waited for a pretty long while.  There are times I know I have to be in a certain place before I watch things and this morning seemed like a good time.

It brought to mind the word "Courage", so I thought today I would try and convey my thought on being courageous.  Ya see the word courage means different things to different people but I understand it to mean being scared but doing it anyway.  I also know it to mean that you know what the consequences of that action may be and that you have decided that the risk you are going to take is worth the possible consequences.  It's easy to pursue a course of action that requires little to no sacrifice but when that sacrifice could possible have the consequence of death then things start to get real.

Courage can be a reflex as a result of training and preparation.  In the military we like to call it muscle memory when the fighting begins and fear is overridden by reflex as a result of training and preparation.  We just act because we have trained our body and mind respond in a certain manner in response to a certain stimuli.  Sikhi stresses this very thing through Nitnem, Simran, Seva, and Rehat.  Things that we train our mind and body to do will come naturally when most needed.

I saw a T-shirt the other day that had the American Flag and a soldier on it, the stripes on the American flag were made of muskets and the shirt read "We are not a product of fearful men".  To most Americans and especially those that have served in the military that is our legacy and what we strive to live up to.

As Sikhs we are not a product of fearful men!  There is story after story of Sikhs that had the courage to stand when no one else would.  Martyrs that would rather sacrifice themselves than violate the principles of Sikhi. Sikhs that stood up to insurmountable odds even though the end result would be their death.

In my opinion one of the most courageous souls in Sikhi is Bhai Mardana.  As a convert I see how he served Guru Nanek, this is a man that was a convert from Islam and without fail served the Guru in every capacity that was asked of him.  He left his family and traveled on every  one of Guru Nanek's Udasi's because the Guru asked him to.  Never leaving the Guru's side even when they were were face to face with lepers.  I'm amazed by his courage.

There is the story of the Sava Lakh, 40 Khalsa and Guru Gobind Singh faced down 10 Lakh of Mughul soldiers.  Without hesitation these 40 Khalsa fought for and protected their Guru.  "Call me Gobind Singh only when each of my Sikhs will fight with more than one and a quarter lakh of enemy."  We do call him Guru Gobind Singh.

There are so many more stories, so many more courageous siikhs even today.  I guess all i really wanted to say is be courageous in pursuit of your faith, be courageous in the protection of the innovent and always remember:

"we are not a product of fearful men"