Gobind Sadan
God's house Without Walls

Guru Granth Sahib’s Universal Community Seminar


Gobind Sadan seminar conclusion:

Guru Granth Sahib encourages respect for all religions

New Delhi, 8 November, 2003: The clear consensus of the two-day seminar on “Guru Granth Sahib’s Universal Community,” held on 7th and 8th November in New Delhi at Gobind Sadan, a renowned gathering place for people of all castes and creeds, is that Guru Granth Sahib encourages respect for all religions.

The revered patron of Gobind Sadan, His Holiness Baba Virsa Singh, explained, “Guru Granth Sahib is a unique holy book which breaks all the communal forts. It gives the message of love, respect, and tolerance for all religions. In it are collected hymns of saints of all religions, and it teaches respect for all holy books. But from the conflicts that are occurring today between religions, it becomes obvious that we are not properly reading or understanding or following the holy books.”

His Holiness Baba Virsa Singh asserted: “People are trying to unite religions, but religion is already one. Where do we find proof of this? In Guru Granth Sahib. In it, there are those who recite ‘Hari, Hari,’ ‘Gobind, Gobind,’ ‘Allah, Allah,’ and ‘Ram, Ram.’ Guru Granth Sahib is not sectarian religion; it is dharam, in which all religions’ holy scriptures-Vedas, Puranas, Qur’an, Bible, Torah, Zendavesta-are accepted. Guru Granth Sahib is not only Sikh religion; rather, it is universal religion in which in addition to the Gurus’ inspired hymns, the hymns of followers of all faiths are included.”

“However,” Babaji noted, “In Punjab today nobody has the true knowledge of religion. At present many people are being misled in the name of religion, resulting in corruption and drug addiction, by which our culture is being destroyed. In the past, Punjab’s culture was renowned, but in we are now facing the adverse and dangerous consequences of its degradation. What is the remedy? All of us should read the religious scriptures, carefully understand them, and act upon them. We should recite the Name of God, be honest in our dealings, respect others’ rights, and be concerned not only about our own families but also our society and the whole world.”

Dr. Karan Singh, MP, International President of the Temple of Understanding, was the Chief Guest at the third session, 8th November. He proclaimed, “I have full faith that the meaning of Guru Granth Sahib’s universal community is one in which there is no difference between rich and poor, in which there is no racial discrimination, and in which we should move ahead with deep love for God.”

Dr. Rattan Singh Jaggi, Professor Emeritus of Punjabi University, Patiala, who gave the inaugural address, similarly emphasized, “The Guru Granth Sahib puts an end to caste distinctions, emphasizing that one should put one’s whole attention on Paramatma. In this bhakti, the greatest thing is the feeling of love for God.” Dr. Satinder Singh, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, proclaimed, “Interfaith dialogue began with Guru Nanak. He made a global city of the whole world. Guru Granth Sahib promotes international integration, not just national integration.”

Professor I. H. Azad Faruqi from Jamia Milia noted the similarities and differences between the Holy Qur’an and the Guru Granth Sahib. He observed, “Both holy scriptures express the divine Presence in this world, though in Islam the emphasis is on the transcendence of God, whereas in Guru Granth Sahib, the emphasis is on the immanence of God.”

Shri Ashok Singhal, International Executive Presdent, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, said, “Guru Granth Sahib is a treasure of all religions. It is for humanity as a whole, not only a religious book for Sikh society.” Alexander Khozin, First Secretary from the Russian Embassy, brought a message from the Russian Ambassador, His Excellency Alexander M. Kadakin, for His Holiness Baba Virsa Singh. Ambassador Kadakin wrote, “It is hard to overestimate your role in the unification and consolidation of modern religions, and in strengthening spiritual values of the Indian people on the secular basis. The soul of every person, regardless of one’s religion, visiting your Institute embraces deep faith and takes comfort in eternal merits of love and non-violence.”

The scholars from many parts of India and abroad who delivered their papers and participated in the seminar include Dr. Harnam Singh Shan from Chandigarh, Dr. Sukhdev Singh Khaira from Amritsar, Dr. Navrattan Kapoor from Poona, Professor Gurbachan Singh from Syracuse, U.S.A., Dr. Mohinder Kaur Gill from Delhi, Professor Krishan Prakash Aggarwal from Lucknow, Professor I. H. Azad Faruqi from Jamia Milia, Delhi, Dr. Bhupinder Singh Khaira from Punjabi University, Patiala, G. S. Makin from Chandigarh, Dr. Raj Wadhwa, former Principal of Delhi University, and Dr. Nahar Singh and Dr. Jagjit Singh from Punjab University, Chandigarh. Programme coordinators were Dr. S. S. Joshi from Patiala, Dr. Surjit Kaur Jolly and Dr. Shashi Mehta, Delhi University, and Bhai Kirpal Singh, Gobind Sadan Institute.

“Keep growing in love for your Master. Do not look to this side or that or even at the path ahead, because people will always be criticizing you.”

Baba Virsa Singh

“Trees do not wear crosses, but the great spiritual beings see God in trees. Water has no symbols, but Guru Gobind Singh says, ‘My God is in water.”

Baba Virsa Singh JI

"We do spiritual practices to gradually prepare the way for enlightenment. It does not come immediately."

Baba Virsa Singh JI

"Management does not change things. It is God who changes people."

Baba Virsa Singh JI

"Our mind is not controlled. It is a fire fed by wood from the whole world."

Baba Virsa Singh JI

"Think that everything in this world exists with God’s blessings, whether we regard it as pleasant or unpleasant."

Baba Virsa Singh JI

"First look within yourself, and then you will see God everywhere."

Baba Virsa Singh JI

"If we keep faith and love in difficulties, and pray for those who abuse us, we will always remain happy & free."

Baba Virsa Singh Ji

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