INTERFAITH GATHERINGS AND PRAYERS VIGILS
Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Aug, 31, 2012
Kanwal Prakash Singh
Since the painful events that the Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, there have been many moving, warm and friendly interfaith gatherings, prayer vigils, thoughtful discussions about the Sikh faith, culture, and community at places of worship and civic venues.
The expressions of support and solidarity have been amazing; the interest to learn from and about each other has been very reassuring. We are grateful for this spontaneous outpouring of kindness and friendship. It gives us pause to reflect on the past Sikh American challenges in the light of renewed interest.
We find in this an opportunity to network to create better understanding, build new friendships, and discover our common hopes and ideals that unite us at many levels and remind us of our intertwined destiny as Americans and as members of One Human Family.
On behalf of the central Indiana Sikh Americans, we thank Rev. Jack Skiles, and Rev. Caela Wood, Amber Kennedy Kent, and all others who made the visit of their Sikh friends a wonderful experience. The Pot Luck dinner was a beautiful idea. Sharing meal is a universal blessing and has a very deep significance in Sikh faith tradition.
Thought you may enjoy and share the photographs.
Below is my presentation at the First United Church of Bloomington to highlight the central philosophy, spiritual commandments, and daily prayer of the Sikhs for the entire Creation: "In Your Name, By Your Grace, may there be peace, and goodwill among all people everywhere." We are reminded this as a mandate for each of us to see God's Light in all and to respect everyone as One God's Children. When we study other religions and their sacred scriptures, we can see an unmistakable echo of similar prayers in all major faith traditions.
WAHEGURU (WONDERFUL LORD) IN SIKHISM
A PRAYERFUL REFLECTION <> ARDAAS (SUPPLICATION)
Immaculate, Almighty, Limitless and Indescribable
Eternal Truth through the Ages;
Since before Time and Life,
Unfathomable, Beautiful and Boundless
Supreme Creator and Manifested in All Creation.
Wonderful Lord, we address You with many Names;
Venerate, Praise, and Celebrate Your countless excellences
In myriad ways, colorful traditions and rituals;
You are eternally Benevolent
Compassionate and All-embracing,
Father and Mother of All Creation
All living beings are Your Children,
There are no strangers in Your Kingdom.
You are the Source of All Languages, All Thoughts:
Fountainhead of All Spiritual knowledge;
You are Eternal Light, Love, Hope, and Assurance
Guardian of All that You have created,
All that is manifested before us,
All that is beyond our sight and imagination;
You have placed a Feast of Wonder, Mystery, and Marvel
Across the human and cosmic universe:
For us to dream, to strive, and to explore;
To prosper, to excel, and to serve;
To fulfill our promise and shape our destiny;
Discover ways that unite us and connect us
With diverse cultures, faiths, and people;
Celebrate ideas and ideals of our shared humanity:
Equality, Justice, Compassion, Human Dignity,
Sanctity of all Faiths, Sacred Spaces, and Your Messengers;
See Your Light and Love radiating in each living being:
Know Your Presence at every crossroads,
Illuminating every courtyard, meadow, season, and landscape;
Learn about and from each other:
Loving and Giving, Fellowships and Friendships,
History and Heritage, Legends and Legacy,
Time-honored Truths, Wisdom and Insights;
Witness with awe and humility Your grandeur and Majesty:
Celebrate Life; enhance blessings and opportunities;
Embrace Your Commandments and Wisdom,
Entrusted to us by Your Enlightened Messengers
Over many generations of human triumphs and struggles
In villages and hamlets that grace and people Your Earth;
Gathering in new lands and unfamiliar corners of our Planet:
Human caravans crossing new frontiers of Time and Space
Carrying hopes and dreams, prayers and imagination,
Fashioning civilizations like none other in history;
Offering testimony of an amazing renaissance,
A new century with undreamed-of possibilities;
Prayer vigils and interfaith gatherings:
Opportunities to learn and understand,
Build “Islands of Peace,”
Know one another,
Develop lasting friendships
Where the once strangers now meet in a kindred spirit;
The ripple effect of cultural and interfaith fellowships
May travel to the farthest ends of the earth:
Darkness of ignorance, stereotyping, unfounded suspicion,
Unprovoked violence, hate, and indifference
Surrender to the warmth of our common humanity;
As One God’s Children,
Pursue a spirit of Love and Peace.
As our testimony, our modest offering to the Immaculate Lord
Who has made and governs
All Creation in dazzling manifestations,
Each destined journey and our myriad shared blessings.
Discover beauty in the wondrous Feast of Life:
Recognize the sanctity of each moment, life, and encounter.
Safeguard the promised sacred rights and freedoms,
Knowing righteous labors enhances our collective promise.
Enlarge the Circle of Understanding as a Divine mandate,
Celebrate goodness that each being, faith, and culture represents.
Dignify unmistakable lessons in the Sacred Word, Spirit of Faith,
Endeavor to honor the Supreme Master of All Creation.
Indianapolis Indiana USA <> www.KPSinghDesigns.com <> August 25, 2012