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SYANA 2020 GURMAT CAMP UPDATES

We’ve provided a ton of information, links, timings, schedules, etc. All emailed communications can be found here. This should help us all stay on track!

Update #1
It’s official Camp is happening
A brief overview of what camp will look like

Update #2
Introduction to this year’s Theme Shabad
Notations and Tune can be found

Update #3
Prabhat Ferri, Divaans and more 🙂

Update #4
Group Assignments (Updated version in Update #5)
Saturday Evening Orientation
Your 1st Supply List

Update #5
Updated Group Assignments
Camp Guidelines
Schedule for Sunday to Wednesday

Update #6
Amrit Bani Program
Important points regarding zoom
Some more supply lists
5:55 PM, be there or be square. 
Always remember, to be on time is to be late 🙂

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Khalsa Ji,

ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕਾ ਖ਼ਾਲਸਾ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕੀ ਫ਼ਤਹਿ॥

This year, we came together for our first ever virtual retreat and explored the lifestyle of a Sikh in many ways. The daily living and discipline of a Sikh is unlike any other act of devotion – it is a loving labor of the mind and body to manifest Divine Love and inspiration found in Gurbani into every single molecule of our being.

ਰੋਮੇ ਰੋਮਿ ਰੋਮਿ ਰੋਮੇ ਮੈ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਰਾਮੁ ਧਿਆਏ ਰਾਮ ॥

Without this genuine and sustainedpractice of Nam, Rehit is reduced to an outward performance and display of empty religiosity. Guru Nanak’s vision of the Khalsa is a nation of people committed to cultivating the internal spiritual transformation and channeling it outwards to the world. In doing so, a Sikh adopts and becomes the image and spirit of Guru Sahib.

Gurmat Rehit is multifaceted. One aspect that is integral yet misrepresented in our mainstream Sikh culture is Kes, unshorn hair. During our retreat, narratives around Kes and their importance were put forth for participants to consider. We realize some of the responses offered at retreat regarding Kes were incomplete and may have been misleading. In an effort to correct these misconceptions, we offer the following to you:

Beadbi or dishonoring the kes in any form is Manmat, not aligned to Guru Sahib’s principles. In situations where a person has a medical condition or illness, it is okay to seek medical attention to address the illness, regardless of a change in hair growth/pattern. However, wanting to eliminate hair because of an unwanted change in hair growth or pattern should not underpin our decisions to seek medical interventions that address the hair and not the illness. Hair is not abnormal. The active removal of hair from any parts of our body is not endorsed by our Panth’s Rehit Maryada.

When understanding the value of Kes, turning to Gurbani, Rehit, and Sikh history is crucial.

Guru Gobind Singh jee gave the first place to Kes in all the Hukumnamas that were issued to various sangats of the country. “ਕੇਸ ਸਾਡੀ ਮੋਹਰ ਹੈ”, meaning Kes are our (Panth) official seal, was the talk of the town during Guru Sahib’s time period. This significance of Kes became part of our Panthic Ardaas, where we ask for the gift of Kes and also remember all the Singhs and Singhnis, who remained steadfast in their Sikhi until their last breath, their last hair. So, it is the duty of a Sikh to obey Guru Sahib’s orders by maintaining the Sikhi attire, of which Kes are an integral part. No one has any right to alter or dishonor Guru Sahib’s seal.

The following rehat is written in poetic Persian language as per Professor Jodh Singh’s famous book, “Gurmat Nirnayi”:

ਨਿਸ਼ਾਨਿ ਸਿੱਖੀ ਈਂ ਪੰਜ ਹਰਫ਼ ਕਾਫ਼, ਹਰਗਿਜ਼ ਨ ਬਾਸ਼ਦ ਈਂ ਪੰਜੇ ਮੁਆਫ਼ ॥
ਕੜਾ ਕਾਰਦੋ, ਕੱਛ ਕੰਘਾ ਬੇਦਾਂ, ਬਿਲਾ ਕੇਸ ਹੇਚ ਅਸਤ ਜੁਮਲਾ ਨਿਸ਼ਾਂ ॥

which means: There are five K’s that signify Sikhi and none of them are exempted under any circumstances. They are Karha, Kirpan, Kuchh, and Kangha, but without keeping the foremost K – Kes, none of the other K’s are of any significance. Sikhs learn to be satisfied with Hukam and practice radical acceptance of themselves and the present moment. This acceptance is unique – just like the path of Gursikhi – it helps us reframe our bodies as tools of devotion and love to the Divine instead of belonging to us or existing for the purpose of our vanity.

By naming the fort, Kesgarh Sahib, the Fortress of Hair, where the first Khandey Di Pahul was prepared in 1699, Guru Gobind Singh Ji reaffirmed this commitment to living out Gurmat through every single hair on our body. After the first Amrit Sanchaar, Guru Gobind Singh Ji instructed the Sikhs to maintain their Kes and care for them with a Kanga.
The Amrit Sanchar imbued the emerging Khalsa with a spirit of fearlessness and conviction in Guru Sahib’s principles so much so that maintaining the reflection of Guru Sahib’s form on our own bodies was life-giving. Hair, identity, and principles became tied together inexplicably for the Khalsa.

Professor Puran Singh Ji explains beautifully:
We were called to don the robe of the Guru’s discipleship. We wear turbans as He did; we keep long hair as He kept. We prefer the colours he liked. We are still alive with the spark he lit in our souls. The torch when lighting another creates its own images. We carry the Guru’s face. His features, His whole image, in our faces and form. As I ponder who I am, I knew I am of the Guru. (Spirit of the Sikh, Vol 1)

Honoring the spark that Guru Sahib lit in our spirits during the Amrit Sanchaar is our calling, which includes honoring our Kes. Echoes of this unyielding commitment are everywhere in our history.

It is heard when Bhai Taru Singh Ji so boldly proclaimed: Sir Jaave Ta Jaave, Mera Sikhi Sidak Na Jave. It rings deeply in the lives of the Sikh prisoners who keep their Rehit alive despite facing grueling conditions in state prisons today. In a world where many narratives exist about who we are and assign value to our inherent humanity, Guru Sahib equips us with the tools to truly be free from shackles of Maya in the love of the Guru.

ਪ੍ਰਥਮੇ ਤਿਆਗੀ ਹਉਮੈ ਪ੍ਰੀਤਿ ॥ ਦੁਤੀਆ ਤਿਆਗੀ ਲੋਗਾ ਰੀਤਿ ॥ ਤ੍ਰੈ ਗੁਣ ਤਿਆਗਿ ਦੁਰਜਨ ਮੀਤ ਸਮਾਨੇ ॥ ਤੁਰੀਆ ਗੁਣੁ ਮਿਲਿ ਸਾਧ ਪਛਾਨੇ ॥੨॥

We urge our collective community (including ourselves) to examine our own deeply held beliefs about hair, identity, and who we are with courage and love so that we can grow to love our Kes, Rehit, and beloved Guru Sahib completely and unconditionally.

We are hoping to start a webinar series soon. Would you be interested in this being a topic for discussion? Take our poll and share your thoughts.

In the service of Guru-Panth
Kuldeep Singh Sikh Youth Alliance of North America (SYANA)
ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕਾ ਖ਼ਾਲਸਾ ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕੀ ਫ਼ਤਹਿ॥

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SYANA 2020 Gurmat Retreat: save the date

Vaaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

SYANA Gurmat Retreat is nearly here. We are looking forward to the events at this year’s retreat and hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to come together as Sikhs to explore and reflect upon your personal path towards the Guru.

Through daily Nitnem, Keertan Divaans, various workshops, Gurbanee discussions, and healthy debate, we will explore our connection with the Guru, Sangat and beyond.

Come take part in this unique weekend of self-exploration and building Panthic unity. Registration will open soon. We look forward to seeing you May 22nd – May 25th, 2020 at YMCA Camp Storer!

Vaaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

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2019 SYANA Gurmat Camp: Update #5

Vaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!!

Camp is almost upon us and we can’t wait!!!

As you make your way to camp this year – don’t forget to post your travel pictures and tag us with #syana2019.

Post on our Facebook wall “What you’re most excited about for #syana2019” (bonus points for videos)!

If you have any issues while travelling and need to connect with us, please contact us at: Arminder Kaur 419.450.4325 or Inderpal Singh 847.226.0690. Remember registration begins at 2:30 pm and ends promptly at 4:30 pm.

As you wrap up (or start!) your packing, double check the list of items to bring to camp on our FAQ on our website.  Remember your dastaar/chunnis/bandanas, water bottles,  AND LEAVE ELECTRONICS AT HOME! Also, because of our amazing sevadaars, no need for vaajaas this year so save some space in your cars and leave them at home!

As a final reminder – don’t forget basic toiletries/bedding/towels. The campsite can become fairly muddy on rainy days, so please come prepared.

Safe travels and we’ll see you soon!!

Chardhi Kala!

Vaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!!

ATTENTION PARENTS!

In order to share all that we have learned during our week together, we invite you to join us for the final day program. Please check out the schedule for Saturday, July 6th here. Looking forward to having you join us!

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2019 SYANA Gurmat Camp: Update #4

Vaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

To all #syana2019 campers!

Camp is only a few days away and we can hardly contain ourselves! We are looking forward to seeing everyone so soon and hope you all are as excited as we are! We are looking forward to all the upcoming activities, being with our camp family and the feeling the energy you all bring with you!!

Just a few reminders:

  1. Camp registration starts at 2:30 pm on Sunday, June 30th. We will not be able to accommodate registration prior to this time, so please plan on arriving after this time. The campsite address is YMCA Camp Copneconic at 10407 North Fenton Road, Fenton Twp, MI 48430, MI. Please try to arrive on time as Sunday’s program will start promptly at 5 pm.
  2. In efforts to make sure everyone feels at home at camp, Counselors have reached out to their campers as a way to introduce themselves and get to know their campers before the week starts. If campers haven’t responded to their counselor’s email, please try and do so.
  3. We have some important information for parents regarding registration at the campsite and the final day program please check it out here.
  4. We received input from all of you regarding allergies on your registration forms. If you have any further allergies/dietary restrictions you forgot to mention to us, please send us an email at info@sikhyouthalliance.org
  5. Because our hope is that campers will immerse themselves in sangat  and make lasting friendships at camp, we will be limiting the use of cellphones so they can spend quality time with their camp sangat. Phones will not be permitted during class time, divaan, or evening activities. Campers will be only be permitted to call home during meal and break times.

**Wondering when meal times and break times are? Check out our Daily Schedule this year!**

Our theme shabad for this year is:

Please click link for the RECORDING. We welcome you to listen to the shabad to become familiar with the words. We are confident by the end of the week, you will all be familiar with the shabad!

Just a reminder – we will have the opportunity to participate in several water sports during the week. If you are interested in participating, please remember to bring appropriate swimwear. Please pack hairdryers if possible!

Again, we are excited to see you all soon! Please let us know if you have any questions!

Chardhi Kala!

REMINDER
Because of campsite rules, parents and visitors will not be allowed on the campsite at any time, other than pickup and drop off times. There are no exceptions, so please be mindful of these restrictions. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.

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2019 SYANA Gurmat Camp: Update #3

Vaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

We are so very excited to see you all in just a week! We are looking forward to an amazing upcoming week with our SYANA family! In order to have a smooth week together, here are a few reminders:

  1. Please arrive at the campsite no sooner than 2:30 pm but before 4:30 pm on Sunday, June 30th. Please meet us at the Conference Center (Kesgarh Sahib) in order to check-in and find out about your lodging for the week. Parents – please turn in all medication, including Tylenol/Ibuprofen, at registration to a camp physician. Also, be sure to include instructions on dosage and we will ensure your child receives their medication as needed.
  2. A list of items to bring to camp is on our FAQ on our website.  Please take a look at this to make sure you are prepared for the week.
    • Please bring a reusable water bottle so you can stay hydrated during the week!
    • We will have the opportunity to participate in several water sports during the week. If you are interested in going in the water, please be sure to pack modest swimwear. Hairdryers will also come in handy!
    • Make sure to have enough Dastaars, Chunnies/bandanas for the week. It is a camp requirement that your head be covered throughout the day.
    • Don’t forget your bedding! You will need bedsheets/blanket/sleeping bag and a pillow.
  3. CALLING ALL TALENT! This year, we will be having our very own Talent Show. Just a reminder to start practicing any special talents you’d like to share for our Talent Show. It is all voluntary but we hope you will consider sharing your special talents with us all!
  4. Each year, we have a theme shabad for our week together. This year the theme shabad is:

Please look out for the recording to become familiar with the tune and the words. It may seem difficult to sing along at first but guarantee, by the end of the week, you all will be pros at singing this shabad!

  1. If you are graduating this year, please send us a quick email letting us know so we can celebrate you with our camp family! And don’t forget those birthday celebrations!
  2. LAST CALL! If your child is flying in and you have not completed the travel form as of yet, please do so by tomorrow evening so we can arrange for a timely pick up.

Stay tuned for more emails from us this upcoming week! We are very excited to see you all very soon!

Vaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

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2019 SYANA Gurmat Camp: Update #2

Vaaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaaheguru Ji Ki Fateh

The two week countdown has begun!! Our excitement is growing and hopefully yours is too! Here are a few reminders we wanted to share:

1. For those of you who have attended before, you know each year we ask for vaajaas, vaajaas, vaajaas! However, this year, we had a number of sevadaars buy and donate brand new vaajaas for our SYANA family! Because of the generous donations, we do not need any additional vaajaas this year! So save some space in your cars and keep your vaajas at home this year! Thank you to our amazing sevadaars!

2. This year, we will be trying something new….TALENT SHOW! If you have any special skills you would like to share – paintings, art, poems, skit, etc etc please come prepared for our very own SYANA Talent Show! More information to come but get those creative juices flowing!

3. A list of items to bring to camp is on our FAQ on our website.  Please take a look at this to make sure you are prepared for the week.

4. Make sure to have enough Dastaars, Chunnies/bandanas for the week. It is a camp requirement that your head be covered throughout the day.

5. Please bring a reusable water/sport bottle and make sure to label it with your name – it can become hot around the campsite and important that all campers drink plenty of water throughout the day.

6. Parents – please turn in all medication, including Tylenol/Ibuprofen, at registration to a camp physician. Also, be sure to include instructions on dosage and we will ensure your child receives their medication as needed.

7. Please have campers arrive Sunday, June 30th no earlier than 2:30  and latest by 4:30 pm. If your child is flying in and you have not completed the travel form as of yet, please do so by Friday, June 21st so we can arrange for a timely pick up.

Again, we are excited to see you all soon! Please let us know if you have any questions, and you can always visit the website for further details.

Vaaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaaheguru Ji Ki Fateh

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2019 SYANA Gurmat Camp: Update #1

Vaaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

We are looking forward to seeing you all in just a few weeks! As camp is quickly approaching, we wanted to send out a few quick reminders!

1. Celebrations!! If you are celebrating a birthday or a recent graduation (from High School, College, or Grad School!) please email us and let us know…we want to celebrate with our entire SYANA Family! 🙂

2. Please bring a reusable water/sport bottle and make sure to label it with your name – it can become hot around the campsite and it is important that all campers (and volunteers!) drink plenty of water throughout the day.

3. A list of items to bring to camp is on our FAQ on our website.  Please take a look at this to make sure you are prepared for the week.

4. Because of fire hazards, please do not bring an iron, steamer, hair straighteners, or curling irons.

5. During our week together, we want to be fully present so we can enjoy each other’s company and connect with one another. Therefore, we will be limiting the use of cellphones at camp. Phones will not be permitted during class time, divaan, or evening activities. Campers will only be permitted to call home during meal and break times.  

6. Counselors will be reaching out soon to campers – please be on the lookout for this correspondence!

7. Parents – please turn in all medication, including Tylenol/Ibuprofen, at registration to a camp physician. Also, be sure to include instructions on dosage and we will ensure your child receives their medication as needed.

8. Please read through the “Information for Parent” sheet which can be found here, as it contains new information regarding your child’s stay at camp as well as directions for pickup and drop off. Because of new campsite rules, parents and visitors will not be allowed on the campsite at any time, other than pickup and drop off times. There are no exceptions, so please be mindful of these restrictions. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.

Again, we are excited to see you all soon! Please let us know if you have any questions, and you can always visit the website for further details.

Vaaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

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2019 Gurmat Camp: Camp is coming!

To all SYANA 2019 campers

Camp is just under a month away …

… and we are looking forward to a fun-filled week with sangat, learning, and keertan! We are back at the YMCA Camp Copneconic for our 5th year and we are excited to partner with them again to provide you with a week-long positive, meaningful experience. We are looking forward to meeting old friends and also making new friends. Each year, our SYANA family continues to grow and we can’t wait to make new memories this year!

We have a number of special activities planned for the week and are excited about the time we will all be spending together soon. It is our hope that as we sit with one another during divaans, History classes, and Keertan classes, we can learn together and remember the greatness of those who came before us.

The hope is that with this glimpse of the Sikh way of life, the desire to continue this journey throughout the year will grow within each child.

Below are a few important details related to the camp this year, so please read in its entirety and parents, please make sure to read the link cited below with specific information for you.

1. All campers should arrive between 2:30 pm and 4:30 pm on Sunday, June 30th.

2. If you are travelling by air, bus or train, please notify us with your travel plans, no later than June 18th at info@sikhyouthalliance.org  so that we can make arrangements for your transportation to/from the campsite. The closest airport is Flint, MI but we can also pick up from Detroit, MI

3. Make sure to have enough Dastaars, Chunnies/bandanas for the week. It is a camp requirement that your head be covered throughout the day.

4. This year, we will be offering a variety of water activities. If you are interested in going in the water, please make sure to bring appropriate attire.

We do ask that both Singhs and Kaurs wear t-shirts and shorts with their swim gear.

5. A list of items to bring to camp is on our website.  Please take a look at this to make sure you are prepared for the week.

6. Please bring a reusable water/sport bottle – it can become hot around the campsite and it’s important that all campers drink plenty of water throughout the day. Make sure your bottle is labeled with your name and state.

7. Counselors will be reaching out to you soon as we prepare for camp – please be on the lookout for their emails.

Again, we are excited to see you all soon! Please let us know if you have any questions!

Please read through the “Information for Parent” sheet which can be foundhere, as it contains new information regarding your child’s stay at camp as well as directions for pickup and drop off.

Because of campsite rules, parents and visitors will not be allowed on the campsite at any time, other than pickup and drop off times. There are no exceptions, so please be mindful of these restrictions. We appreciate your understanding in this matter. 

We are sincerely looking forward to camp this year and are excited to see you all soon! Please let us know if you have any questions and stay tuned for more updates.

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2019 Gurmat Retreat: Update #8

Vaaheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Vaaheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

We are only a few days away from the beginning of retreat and are eagerly awaiting your arrival!

via GIPHY

Conversations…

Have you ever thought, where in Gurbani can we find answers about the purpose of life, or how to get rid of anger?

Submit your questions here https://forms.gle/cKu7UxguQFcydH1k8

We are preparing a small workshop through which we hope we will all become more in touch with Gurbani.

Additionally, we’d like to give you the final workshops update!

Seventh Workshop:

ਆਵਾਜ਼ – Awakening the Voice of the Panth:

An immersive workshop explaining the importance of Sikh poetry with an opportunity for all to express their creativity through poems and prose.

Moderator: Japjyot Singh (MD)

Eighth Workshop:

Workshops, Presentations and MORE!

Ever feel nervous about giving a talk or teaching others about a topic? These mini sessions will give you tips and tricks to make your own workshops and presentations. Be prepared to learn and share information in a way that will help you connect with others.

Moderators: Harleen Kaur (MI) & Sangeeta Kaur (MI)

Ninth Workshop:

I Pledge Allegiance

Guru Nanak turned the spiritual and political worlds upside by transfusing both ideals into the life of his Sikhs. This tradition was forged by Charan and then, by the Khanda. This workshop will offer insights on how Miri-Piri relate to one of the most fundamental commitments a Sikh can make: receiving Khandey Ki Pahul. To whom do we owe our allegiance? How can we become engaged citizens of the Khalsa Panth? What responsibilities do we have as constituents of the Akal Takht?

Moderator: Sardar Kuldeep Singh (FL)

Looking forward to a great weekend!

Charhdi Kala,
SYANA Sevadaars

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