This year with the support of Sikh Dharma International, Camp Miri Piri took place at the Hacienda de Guru Ram Das ashram in the beautiful valley of Espanola, New Mexico. Here, in the midst of the mountains and blue skies people from around the world gathered to take a deep journey within to experience the identity of the Spiritual Warrior. To read more about Camp Miri Piri, click here.
Below, please find a wonderful video from Guruka Singh, from last year’s camp, sharing a strong message about marriage and all relationships.
Sometimes people get into an interlocked relationship. This is when both partners are blaming each other, the blame game. This game comes from not looking in the mirror and taking responsibility for your own stuff.
I've been married for 45 years. We are an odd couple, because I am the neat one and my wife was messy. Normally it's the other way around. I used to get frustrated and angry, and act it out passive aggressively, like I would slam the kitchen cupboards closed.
One day she tried to make me happy, and she spent all day cleaning. The first thing I did when I came home was I ran my finger across the door, and said "look this door is dusty". She told me that she never wanted to clean again. I broke her heart, because she worked all day to make me happy and the first thing out of my mouth was a criticism.
So I went to Yogi ji and asked him how I can train my wife. He told me "you pick up every towel, you pick up all the clothes, you clean everything, and you never say a word". So I tried this new technique, which meant that I had to deal with my own anger. It was my anger, which had nothing to do with her. So I developed a habit; the first thing I did when I came home is go into the bedroom, and bow my head and say, "Thank you Guru ji for bringing me home today, and for the blessing of this cozy home, which is your home, and for the blessing of my wife, and for all of the blessings which you have given me." I would keep my head down until I had relaxed. She learned that I would do this first thing. That helped a lot. I still get frustrated, but now I realize that my frustrations are my problem.
Now after 45 years, if I really don't say anything, she cleans up. Not always, but most of the time. Things have improved a lot, and it's because I looked in the mirror, faced my own anger, and dealt with it, instead of laying it on her.
The foundation of a good marriage, is that you have to pay attention to yourself and the other person, and not sweep things under the rug. People have an infinite capacity to rationalize why its ok to do something, but the fact is everyone knows in their soul what is ok and what is not. The fundamental thing that is not OK is causing pain to another person. And yet we still cause pain to each other.
Understand that you have a lot of patterns imprinted on you when you were young. You brought some patterns from previous lives (samskaras). This is just karma. It's like a bill. You just have to pay it. Every soul chooses a family they can be born into to best pay their karma. Karma plays out in your health, money, and all different ways.
When your karma plays into a marriage you have to face it honestly. You have to decide what is your stuff, and what is your partners stuff. Ultimately you have to own your stuff, and not blame it on somebody else. This is a huge realization in a marriage.
We have a lot of Grace in our lives. What makes you a Sikhs is that you have a Guru. What other kind of Sikh is there? Cultural Sikh? Brown Sikh, white Sikh? No. There is only one kind of Sikh; either you are in relationship with your Guru, or you are not. Its not your choice. Guru chooses the Sikh. And there are many people who have been chosen who don't realize it yet.
There are human relationships, and there is a relationship with the self, but there is one relationship that goes beyond this human life; the relationship with your Guru.
You have to invest in every relationship. It takes, time, love, attention, caring, alertness. In the same way you have to invest in your relationship with your Guru. The more you put into it, the deeper it gets. If that relationship is real, it can only lead to one thing, which is complete surrender.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on April 12th 2011