Posted 15 July 2011, by Ravneet Singh (Eco-Sikh), SikhNet, khalsa.com
(Ed Note: Please visit the original site to view the photographs associated with this article)
New Delhi, 13th July 2011, Gurdwra Bangal Sahib: Prominent Kar Sewa Group have agreed to introduce eco-friendly features in Gurdwara buildings under its service and also to add green patches in the new designs for reconstruction of older Sikh structures. This was outcome of a meeting when Kar sewa group led by Baba Sukha Singh ji and Baba Sinda Singh met with USA based EcoSikh, an NGO on environment meet in Bangla Sahib in New Delhi. Both Baba Sukha Singh ji and Baba Sinda Singh ji along with Baba Bachan Singh ji are managing the entire massive Kar sewa operation in several religious Sikh shrines after the passing away of Baba Harbans Singh ji recently.
Washington based EcoSikh convener, Dr. Rajwant Singh paid his deep condolences to late Baba Harbans Singh ji and appreciated his self-less service . During the discussions with Kar Sewa leaders, he listed the components of a green and eco-friendly Gurdwara maintaining balance with nature in line with the teachings of the Sikh Gurus.
Explaining the concept of Green Gurdwaras, Dr. Singh said, “This way of thinking is the core of Sikh theology and now it’s the time to practice the love of air, water and the mother earth as described in Guru Granth Sahib. The best place to start this drive would be to start with our own spiritual home, the gurdwaras.” He also mentioned, “We need to do this for our own well being and for our future generations and provide them a liveable earth. It is important to initiate these projects from Gurdwaras so that it is well understood and accepted by the community around the globe.”
Baba Sukha Singh ji and Baba Sinda Singh ji warmly accepted the ideas and promised to implant these features beginning from five Gurdwaras, namely Gurdwara Tokka Sahib (H.P), Kapal Mochan Sahib (Haryana), Patshahi 9 Suddhal (Haryana), Patshahi 9 Travri (Karnal) and Sandhaura Sahib (Yamuna Nagar).
Baba Sinda Singh ji emphasized that we should mainly plant the native trees that would survive well and fruit trees which can be useful for the Sikh sangat as well and said, “the rainwater harvesting is a wonderful component to have in the Gurdwaras everywhere and we can save million gallons of water for the mother earth. We need volunteers to help us to implement this concept immediately.
Prominent town planners and real estate developer Harinder Singh from AIPL offered all kind of technical assistance in designing and implementing green ideas in future Kar Sewa. He said, “It will be our privilege to join Baba ji to help mother earth and also to implement the ideas of our own ancestors. We can certainly provide input on building construction and landscape designing conducive to local natural environment.
S. Makhan Singh (Retd. Punjab and Singh Bank) who started the meeting by welcoming all the participants in the meeting, said, “I want to thank the ecoSikh team for their initiative of bringing this concept of Greening gurdwaras and it is equally worth noting the positive response of the Kar Sewa committee for welcoming these new ideas in their construction programs. This certainly can show to the world that Sikhs are serious about their commitment to save the planet for all humanity.”
All the members of Nishkam Kar Sewa Jatha of New Delhi joined the meeting and made the commitment of supporting this drive. They have recently contributed for the construction of bathrooms in Anandpur Sahib in Punjab and Paonta Sahib in Himachal Pradesh costing crores of money. Kar sewa of Late Harbans Singh did the entire construction. Committee members of Nishkam Jatha who joined the meeting were:, S. Iqbal Singh ji, Sh. Sham Arora and Romy Singh ji.
EcoSikh India Project Manager Ravneet Singh also presented a slide show on Green Gurdwara concept and also showed the satellite pictures of Punjab’s environment and the pollution of the waters of Punjab.” In addition, Kar Sewaleaders accepted to add: Green Architect designing, biogas plants, green landscapes with native fruit trees to the Gurdwara buildings , solar panels for energy source, kitchen composting, water re-use, Environmental notice board to be created for the devotees to join in this drive and also celebrating Sikh environment day on March 14th every year marking the coronation day of Guru Har Rai ji.
Ravneet Singh added “we hope to reach out to all Kar sewa groups in the near future to add their strength to this campaign.” — — –
EcoSikh Project Manager
There is a garden.
It has so many plants created within it.
And each bears the sweet-nectared
Naam as its fruit. ||1||
Consider this, O wise one,
In this garden you may seek the means by which to attain eternal bliss.
O brothers and sisters of Destiny,
This garden has dark pools of poison here and there,
But it also contains the ambrosial nectar within it. ||1||Pause||
There is only one gardener who tends it.
He takes care of every leaf and branch. ||2||
He brought all these plants and planted them there.
They all bear fruit – none is without fruit. ||3||
The one who receives the ambrosial fruit of the Naam
From the Guru – O Nanak,
Such a servant has a way to pass over the ocean of illusion. ||4||5||56||
(Translation by Albel Singh)
Eak Bageecha: A Gurbani Compilation on the Environment
Eak Bageecha is a compilation of shabads from the Guru Granth Sahib on the Environment. The Guru cares for, nurtures, and resides within nature, and expects us to be more caring about our environment in every aspect of our lives. The purpose of this book is to inspire us to be more considerate towards our environment in all of our daily dealings and decisions. As the Guru asked us, we can and should take steps on an individual basis to bring back the lost glory of our garden, making this earth a better place to live, not only for human beings, but for all of Creation.