Amritsar

I was going to post some pictures from India, but they are either of the beach (Goa) or random things that aren’t picturesque.  The only sight-seeingish thing I did was go to Amritsar, Punjab.  The best thing I did while in India, because before this the only thing I knew about Sikhs was that they wear turbans. My Punjabi friend told me that the prime moral directive for Sikhs is to feed people. So if you ever stay with a family there you will be stuffed beyond belief. I had to start refusing every other meal because I was eating… I think 10 times a day.

 

These are from the Golden Temple (Gurdwara)..IMG_5350

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People in line to see the Holy book…The Guru Granth Sahib… Technically (from what I understand) the book is worshiped as the final Guru.  I think.  There were ten Gurus before that.

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Sikhs believe in a universal God, who is the same for every religion.

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That silver caterpillar is a pile of plates. Gurdwaras feed everyone regardless of caste/sex/ whatever.  The Golden Temple serves food almost 24 hours a day, sometimes to as many as 100,000 people.  Everyone sits on the ground to show that everyone is equal.  Sikhs were big advocates of getting rid of the caste system.

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People getting served from a huge vat of tea.  Oh you can’t wear shoes and you must keep your head covered.  Everyone who maintains and works at the temple does so on a volunteer basis. 

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THAT TEA.  Best thing I’ve ever tasted. 

I didn’t want to be THAT GUY taking pictures like I’m at the freaking zoo, when this is a serious and solemn place. But I just tried to be surreptitious and respectful. I got pamphlets because the religion is just… more people should learn about it.

I hope I didn’t get any facts wrong, feel free to correct me.

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Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance

I was reading a very interesting book recently:

(here it is)

Absolutely fascinating.  Had an account of a religious group that grew out of exercise and meditation (similar to Yoga, at least, that’s how I understood it).  The Falun Gong or Falun Dafa.  The book talks about how the Communist party basically outlawed Falun Gong because they had so many adherents that it gave them some serious power in the country.  Lots of accounts of police brutality.  Lots of peaceful protests.

I was on a long car drive with my roommate (She’s from Jiangxi Province, China) and I asked her if she knew anything about the religion.

She responds with “Oh yeah, they’re crazy.  The government had to outlaw them because they kill themselves in public… They’re like Muslim extremists or something.”

I was shocked.  The book had said NOTHING about that. From what she was saying the religion was like some evil cult that encouraged it’s members to suicide.

Anyways, it was jarring.  Cognitive Dissonance to the max.  Could probably write something about propaganda, or Communism, or government blah blah blah.. but I’ve been feeling dizzy and awful all day so I’m gonna skip it.

Here’s a song:

caution tape

hey please don’t fall for me, just don’t.

I’m sorry in advance for not having the courage to give you the warning you need out loud.  I’m sorry because impulses take precedence over what I know I shouldn’t do, most nights.  I live with my eyes wide open.  I stay sober so I don’t even have that excuse.  I can’t expect you to walk the fine line of detachedness with me.  If I could I wouldn’t be alone on my couch right now.  
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I’ve been thinking about Sufism.  And how maybe Judaism isn’t the root of Christianity or Islam the root of Sufism, maybe its just that they needed to keep what they had been taught originally, but the end result is still Love.  
organized religion, hmph.  
I love Rumi.  I don’t wanna call it Christianity or Sufism, can we just talk about how love is pretty much the only thing worth worshipping? The only quality I would allow you to attribute to God?  
and I’m tired, not making all that much sense, but I’ve been writing beautiful things.  That always comes to me as the nicest surprise.  

Good skincare techniques

An old woman once told me the secret to looking young at 95

Love Everybody

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It’s so simple, really.  Sometimes I wonder why we even need all these religions.  I will start my own:  Throw love around like a contagion.

 As Slug said,   “I’ll make you smile from the simple fact I’m good at it, I’ll make you smile just so I can sit and look at it”

oh and my Muslim friend is trying to get me to convert to Islam… it is very unlikely that I will.  but I told him to get me a copy of the Qur’an in English, and I will certainly discuss it with him.  These are my conceptions of it (of course I have never read it, so who knows how accurate they are):

1.  It says women are inferior to men
2.  talks a lot about killing “infidels”
3.  They can’t eat pork
4.  Jesus was a prophet, not God

I will let you know what I learn.  Should be interesting.