A FAITH FORUM: POSITIVES AND NEGATIVES OF DEATH
The Indianapolis, Email dated Sun 9/8/2013 1:17pm
The Indianapolis Star - Indianapolis, Indiana USA
August 31, 2013 Indianapolis, Indiana, USA,
Sikh Perspective: Kanwal Prakash “KP” Singh
In a human and temporal context, life is a joyous, welcome, and new beginning; death is a feared end; both are momentous events inspiring reflection.
We see life as full of wonderful attractions and myriad manifestations: love and laughter, joys and sorrows, triumphs and temptations, dreams and possibilities, celebrations and heartaches, landmark achievements and unpredictable daily journeys into the unknown.
Death, one of the darkest agonizing moments when it involves innocents or young, represents emptiness, deep scars, unsettling images, a shaken spirit, and end of dreams. Grieving survivors wonder about the departed soul’s journey and final destination, reconnection with dead relatives, and if one believes in reincarnation, the prospect of long-awaited Reunion with the Higher Spirit from whom one has separated at birth.
Sometimes life can be a living nightmare and death a welcome liberating blessing.
Sikhs believe God’s Grace leads to deliverance, freedom for the body and spirit trapped in earthly struggles and lifecycles, and welcome Homecoming for the soul to its Origin in the realm of Divine Light and Love without confining boundaries and temporal sufferings. In this life after life, the blessed souls are with the “…righteous warriors, venerable saints, accomplished musicians, and celestial beings…” and “reside in the realm of Truth amidst Eternity.”
This prospect and promise is a great leap of faith for those who have lost loved ones at Sandy Hook, the Boston Marathon, in the Jewish Holocaust and Sikh Genocides, daily random violence and tragic crimes against humanity; or who die from dreaded diseases, in accidents or natural disasters. We wonder how could a Compassionate and Benevolent God let this happen?
The Sikh scriptures remind us, that “The Angel of Death will make a call to every home in turn,” for “All that you witness is transitory…much like the dream in the night...fleeting shade of a passing cloud.” We do not know the hour or manner, but Providential Law is manifest and in force: “No one can stay here, not the mighty warriors, ordinary mortals, or venerable saints…therefore, serve with all your heart.” Sikhs pray “…May I not fear death, but the death of conscience,” for “…it is only in death that the soul is reunited with the Wonderful Lord” and crosses the threshold to Eternal Life.
“God is the Father and Mother of all beings…knows the suffering of every soul.”
Prayer, surrender, and reflection lead to understanding; seeing another amazing dawn beyond the shadows of dark night, both created by God. Grief turns into hope when we remember: “No one is outside the Circle of God’s all-embracing benevolence.” We witness God at-work: family, friends, and strangers form “Circles of Love” to comfort and assist those devastated by tragedy and disasters.
God has created and willed life and death as the two sides of life-experience, each to teach us important lessons and give dignity and meaning to Life.
Almighty God can end all suffering if He so wills. God is always with us; hears and answers our prayers and petitions in His way. We must focus on life, learning, faith, and service.
God as a Masterful Teacher demands discipline and trust; every event carries lessons to enlarge our understanding, responsibilities, and relationships with God, Man, and Creation.
Life and Death are intertwined portals to know God. The Sikh Scriptures echo the precept: death is not the end; it is a preordained natural transition. The soul enters into other cycles and realms. Sikhs pray for everlasting reunion and freedom from future lifecycles.
We all pray for life to be a time of amazing possibilities, rightful opportunities to explore our promise and destiny to the fullest. For that to happen, we must as One Family, discover ways that enhance Life; dispel unconscionable violations that cause death or diminish the human spirit.... Indianapolis, Indiana USA <> KPSinghDesigns.com <> August 31, 2013