and the story behind it....
From a young age I visited India frequently and paid homage to many sacred places with my family. Ranging from Hindu Mandirs deep in the Himalayas through to Shrines of Peer Fakirs in Punjab. One things for sure I always felt something different inside me when I used to go to the Gurdwareh be it a small village Gurdwara or The Akal Takht.
Religion was never really a priority although It fascinated me especially when seeing images of our Gurus and old Sikh wars.
As I grew up I slowly achieved all the things I desired. Das was blessed to gain a understanding of rhythm by Waheguru. Waheguru then led me to meet my greatest musical influence – Aman Hayer.
Under the guidance of Aman Hayer I made the promise land of becoming part of Sukshinder Shindas Band and recording my first ever Vocals in Amans international releases.
Sukshinder Shinda was my greatest Idol I grew up waiting for his albums to be released. I read every Cassette/Album Inlay, and was inspired more than I can explain by him. After all he taught my teacher and my teacher was like Lightning on every instrument.
At this point due to my basic understanding of Rhythm - it was the Rhythm that instilled the passion to respect and admire Aman Hayer and Sukshinder Shindas talents. This also brought into my mediocre life one of the greatest Living Bhangra Superstars - Jazzy B.
From 2001 till present God guided me around the world to places I would never have seen like Australia, New Zealand, Canada, USA, , Dubai, Norway, Denmark, Italy, Kenya to name a few. I had seen a lot and even lived 1 year in New York. Throughout all this everything was very driven to live a very normal life.
Knowing that my idols Jazzy B & Sukshinder Shinda had huge respect for Sikhi started a deep inspiration towards the religion. Jazzy B paji never ever steps on stage without doing ardas. Seeing things like this made me think I should take time out for my religion like him but I never really did.
Seeing Sukshinder Shinda as a person and seeing him treating so many different humans just as if they were his family made me see what a great example of a human being was. Unlike me. I was just self centred and just wanted to make everybody laugh all the time, never really cared about others it was always about me and my friends.
AT this point I can say that my soul was asleep although due to having a basic understanding of the purpose of life and due to having inspiring idols in my life the soul had reason to feel it was being wasted. Although I lived my dream touring the world, with people I dreamed of something was missing.
I had been through some tragic times in my life in particular when my Nan who bought me up passed away on my 21st Birthday. I was always very scared and hated the word death. Whenever a death occurred I would tottally be alien to it and just could not get my head around it. The Philosophy of “Khao Piyo Aish Karo Mitro Dil Par Kisseh Da Dukhayo Na” just didn’t add up for some reason. Death is something all of us cannot get away from and this I think plays a part in people changing their lives.
After getting married in 2009 I had reached the pinnacle of my life so far. Life was still on its normal course until something special entered my self centered life.
I was at a wedding in Coventry UK where due to boredom I wandered off from the Anand Karaj. Downstairs in the Gurdwara there was a stall selling Gutkeh and other books and Kareh etc. I saw a very old man behind the table. I asked him a question which was from deep within me. I asked “Baba Ji I want to know more about our religion and its main purposes” He was a amazing old man he come across like a fountain of wisdom and replied accept this…It was a Red Nitnem Gutka sahib. He said start to read Japji Sahib and your life will transform. He said theres nothing more to be done or said. I asked who wrote it and he said Dhan Guru Nanak Wrote this himself nearly 500 years ago. At this point I think the seed god places in all of us may have began to sprout. I was intrigued, taken back and had lots of questions. He just said just go away and read and begin to recite, Make a decision to never miss a day without Japji Sahib and you will begin to find its powers. I purchased the Gutka sahib and took it home. I got immediately sucked back into the play of Maya and Kaljug and I didn’t even open the Gutka Sahib for at least a month.
Then One evening whilst speaking with friends the topic of God came up and we spoke about our life being like a Pie Chart When we will go to the court of God they will show us our Life like a Pie Chart, What will be the story of my life be if I carry on the way I am going? – 50% of my life I will have spent sleeping, 25% Eating that leaves 25% this will be spent laughing dancing and just trying to find happiness in the form of fun fun fun, money, money, money.
At this point 2 of my friends were drinking and im telling you that seed we were speaking about earlier all of a sudden began to sprout further. It was here that I knew I had to do something….It was here I knew I could make a choice to win over my mind and start to do paat for the rest of my life. At this point in my mind I didn’t know what this feeling was but in hindsight now I can clearly see that Waheguru took control of me from this point on. That night as I got home I could not sleep. All I kept thinking about was that my life will be a big waste.
The following morning I woke up tied a ramal and went to look for the Gutka I received a month ago. I found it after searching everywhere and sat down everybody else was still asleep at home. At this point I thought to myself I am now about to read “THE” message from Guru Nanak Dev Ji themselves! I began to read the English translation and immediately the hairs were all standing on the back of my neck, I now knew that this was the eternal truth.
It didn’t matter what anybody else in the world said…The message that Guru Nanak Dev Ji had sent me was the only truth I would ever accept again from here onwards. I realised that here that there were 2 ways to look at this? Do I think Guru Nanak Dev Ji lied? If my soul knows they would never have lied so from here I knew there is nobody else who's word we should follow other than Guru Nanak Dev Ji through to Guru Granth Sahib Ji.
As the weeks went on I never missed Japji no matter what I would at least listen to the Japji Sahib paat daily.
Around about a month after doing the paat daily I then asked a friend what the hardest part would be to take Amrit…he replied to me “for me it’s the look I don’t think I could keep my kes all the rest is easy, At this point I thought to myself that how hard could it be to throw away all my razors and just never cut another hair on my body. I was changing inside but externally I guess I looked the same old guy. This made it very difficult to sit around in pub because my inside was feeling something but externally everything would have looked the same therefore soceity would not let me move on and it would not have been possible to stop drinking alcohol etc had I not kept Kes.
I felt at this point that even if I was to be killed I would not want to cut my hair! I then listened to some katha on Guru Gobind Singh Ji and how they sacrificed everything for us and immediately my soul had over powered my mind. The mind made all sorts of excuses to me saying oh at work people wont like it, il have to stop performing in a band etc etc, but with Wahegurus blessing my soul overpowered all these negative thoughts and I went home that night on my 28th Birthday and decided from here on In the Name of Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj and his sacrifices I will NEVER cut my hair again. I went and got my electric shavers, Gillette Blades, Shaving Foam and went and slam dunked them straight in the Bin. Inside I was ecstatic. Honestly in words it can never be described. I was so so so so happy its just hard to explain. I really felt like god had just made these decisions for me but he wanted me to make the move to confirm my faith. The more I read and asked people I realised that it was a test Waheguru wanted me to take the first step.
The next stage for me was to put some pressure on my own mind so that it cant backtrack. When you know nobody is watching its much easier for your mind to cave in and just revert to your old ways. To counter this problem as soon as I felt that I wanted to do this…I sent a text to all close people in my phonebook saying I had decided to keep my Kes. This therefore now applied the weight of no turning back….but why would I want to turn back? Any problems I could foresee I just did ardas and said to Guru Gobind Singh Ji my head is yours now you will have to help me with my problems my king. Guess what he took every problem my mind created and slashed it in half.
Worries which Guru Took Care of:
• How will I tie a dastaar (Guru took care of this)
• How can I stop drinking (Guru took care of this)
• I need to eat so much meat for weighttraining etc how will I stop that (Guru took care of this)
• It felt emotional as it was like my old me was going to die. (Guru took care of this)
• So much responsibility, so many rules (Guru took care of this)
My minds biggest obstacle was my work place. As for work I work in a office full of 500 non Sikhs in Warwick UK. There was not one Kesdhari Sikh in the offices and I had worked here for 3 years. This was probably my minds biggest allie in the change.
I was always very concious of being a Indian let alone a Sikh so this was the tough cookie but with Guru Gobind Singh Jis blessing it all came to plan. I sent a company wide email to all the employees notifying them that I was now going to follow the faith of Sikhism and that they will see some changes in my appearance in the coming weeks/months and that i will never be cutting hair again. To celebrate I would be getting Samosas in for the whole company…That took care of that.
This was it then I was in the deep end all worries I had Guru Gobind Singh Ji took care of. I had never tied a dastaar to date and I learned from my idol Sukshinder Shinda ji in just a few sessions. I also sent off to india for lots of new dastaars I just took the same size and style Sukshinder Shinda Paji has, as I preferred that style.
Paat wise I loaded my Iphone with all banis and for 2 years every 6 months I added a bani to my routine. I was at first listening to the banis then on New years day I made concious decisions to now recite the particular bani from there onwards till the final meeting with death.
Many people always ask me what made you change? This is so hard to just put down to one thing, the best way I can try to explain this is: I was always going to be presented the opportunity to purchase the Gutka in the gurdwara that day in my life as it was destiny, but Waheguru tested me in the sense will I make a decision to recite for the rest of my life? I decided to jump in the deep end and he was their waiting.
The same thing with Kes, Waheguru was always going to present me with the oppurtunity to keep my kes again I had to get the courage from within me and he was there again waiting.
We feel that we make these decisions to change but they are gifts waiting to be accepted. Its up to us if we accept or if we turn our back. Its just how the creator has created this game.
I cried when I recently bowed before Guru Granth Sahib Maharaj Ji at Harimandir Sahib. As soon as I went there i could not control the sobbing coming from within. It was my soul thanking Guru Ji for pulling me out the normal kaljug ridden world and giving me this chance. It feels like I did something in my previous lifes and this is the reward for that With the grace of Guru Gobind Singh Ji along with my brothers Waheguru Blessed us to begin our journey in Sikhi with Amrit at Kesgarh Sahib On Wednesday 22nd February. This was the same weekday the original sanchaar was held. Theres countless other amazing things that have happened since taking a step towards my soul and God, I will be writing everything on this website hoping others can benefit from the change waheguru brought to me.
The advice is all within Guru Granth Sahib Ji. The simple concept which needs to be applied for anybody who is being blessed with Sikhi. Give your head and your worries and Guru Gobind Singh Ji takes care of the rest. Its like driving a car on the Highway with your eyes closed you need to conjure up that faith in waheguru. He will not let you down. Without faith you cannot do anything. All doubts can only be removed with faith. Doubt is the opposite of faith.
There is so much advice that one can give with regard to this change but the basic foundation is Gurbani and Faith in Gurbani. Faith in Gurbani is faith in Our Gurus word. If you doubt Guru Gobind Singh Jis hukam then how can you come onto his path? Simple really.
Review your sangat around you. Once you are blessed by waheguru with the company of Gurmukhs the future will be laid down before your eyes. Sangatplays a massive role. Do ardas for all these things when in front of Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj.
Decide to make the first move, let all close people know you have cornered your mind and are now embarking on the journey of Sikhi. Then once that announcement is made off you go…your blessings await. Begin your Bhajan Bandagi start to accumulate the bank balance of naam and look forward to the rest of this worldly life and more importantly try to conquer death whilst alive.
Guru Gobind Singh ji Maharaj wasn’t some ordinary person….. They were the perfect image of God in Human Form. We all are god in human form but we have many failures. Myself for example I have many many failures. But all our Guru Sahibs they were the perfect beings free from Kaam Krodh Lob Moh Ahankaar. So take away the treasure they are offering you and remain happy not just in this life but for eternity.
All I know Is that this life is now in dedication to Guru Nanak Dev Ji's Sikhi. I pray that he keeps me close to the dust of his feet. As Maharaj Speaks to us on Ang 261 “He Himself has acted, and He Himself acts. He was in the past, and He shall be in the future.”
Therefore ………Who Can Plan the Future other than the Almighty Himself?
Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki fateh
Jakara Album is out now feat Kaka Mohanwalia on the lead track Singh Marey Ni Mukhneh
iTunes - Music - Jakara by Various Artists
Preview songs from Jakara by Various Artists on the iTunes Store. Preview, buy and download Jakara
Jakara Various Artists 2012 Brand New Punjabi Religious Album Released on 21 April 2012. Revolution Records Ltd. launch of their third album Jakara, out now!
The album will be available through various distributors in Vancouver, New York, California, Toronto and the UK.