Gurmat Retreat May 22 - May 25, 2020

2020 Gurmat Retreat

Reboots help install new software

We usually try to connect retreat themes with previous years’ themes or upcoming centennial anniversaries from Sikh history to reconnect with our principles and heroes who embodied them. This year, however, our attempts to do so were upended when the pandemic established a foothold in our daily lives. Fortunately, Sikhi has an answer for that, too, and we were able to find gursikhs who helped us realign our retreat theme with the need of the hour. The goal now is to use this opportunity, reevaluate our priorities, learn from our treasure trove of a Guru, and attempt to realign ourselves more with Sikhi so we’re not fazed by challenges of this scale.
 
 

RETREAT SCHEDULE

All times are EST

6:30pm
 
8:30pm
 
Ice Breaker Leads: Ujjal Didar Singh (OH) & Japman Kaur (QC)
6:00am
 
7:30am
  Simran & Nitnem
9:00am
 
9:15am
 
Kuldeep Singh (FL)

9:15am
 
10:45am
 
Moderators: Rubin Paul Singh (MD)

Description: In this workshop, we will discuss the shabad ਭਜਹੁ ਗੋੁਬਿੰਦ ਭੂਲਿ ਮਤ ਜਾਹੁ ॥ ਮਾਨਸ ਜਨਮ ਕਾ ਏਹੀ ਲਾਹੁ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ and explore Bhagat Kabeer Ji’s reflection on the human experience and how to live a purpose-filled life.

10:45am
 
12:15pm
 
Facilitator: Santbir Singh (ON)

Description: In this presentation we will explore three key aspects of Guru Amardas Sahib’s life. We will look at how Guru Ji taught us how to develop and demonstrate love for your Guru. Secondly we will look at Guru Sahib’s legacy of Seva. And finally, and especially relevant today, we will examine how Guru Sahib dealt with those whose behaviour we find toxic or hurtful. What is the Sikh response to hate?

12:15pm
 
1:00pm
  Lunch & GupShup
1:00pm
 
2:00pm
 
Facilitator: Harleen Kaur (MI)

Description: This workshop will reflect on the way we imagine and define the Panth today—often without the modifier of Khalsa. What kind of Panth are we really building if it’s without Khalsa, i.e. without the responsibility and obligation of Khande Baate ki Pahul? Thinking through how we are building community as Sikhs and the different expectations we create for people to belong, we will work to remove the influences of manmat and return to a Gurmat-framed approach to community building.

2:00pm
 
3:30pm
  Break
3:30pm
 
5:00pm
 
Facilitator: Kulpreet Singh (BC)

Description: Mental health can be a taboo subject, not only in the Sikh community but also in the wider South Asian communities. Kulpreet Singh, who himself has dealt with mental health challenges and founded a non profit organization dedicated to advocacy and training, addresses the spectrum of mental health, wellness and illness. He then relates that to what Gurbani says, thus giving us GurMat solutions to help tackle such issues.

5:00pm
 
6:30pm
 
Facilitator: Harleen Kaur (NY)

Description: An interactive art workshop with artist Harleen Kaur, also known as @immersedinyou on Instagram. Harleen Kaur will lead an interactive session on how we can foster a connection with Guru and Gurbani through our creativity. While some of you may not think of yourselves as artists, everyone can create in some way. Collect your favorite art supplies (anything goes) and get ready to get out of your comfort zone and flex your creative muscles!

6:30pm
 
7:00pm
  So Dar Raihras
6:00am
 
7:30am
  Simran & Nitnem
9:00am
 
10:30am
 
Facilitator: Mohanpal Singh (ON)

Description: During this session, we will explore the character traits of a gurmukh which are beautifully described in Bhai Gurdas Ji’s Vaara(n) and how they can be applied in our own lives.

10:30am
 
12:00pm
 
Facilitator: Mandeep Kaur (UK)

Description: Throughout retreat we’ve delved into discussions about accepting our circumstances as a blessing, learning how to act out of love through the life of Guru Amardas Ji, strengthening our minds with Bani & Sangat of the Guru and the virtues that make-up a Gursikh. Bringing this all together, Mandeep Kaur will speak about how to make this all practical and sustainable, considering not only the current circumstances but the long-term outlook of our lives. Having these tools – how do we build a practice of realigning ourselves with Gurmat on a daily basis? What do a Gursikh’s everyday priorities look like?

12:00pm
 
1:00pm
  Lunch & GupShup
1:00pm
 
2:30pm
  Break
2:30pm
 
4:00pm
 
Facilitators: Gurkiran Kaur (OH) & Anhad Singh (IL)

Description: This workshop will help create a fun and healthy foundation of wellness through recipes and exercises. We will be creating nutritious treats and snacks from simple recipes. Pairing this with some challenging but fun home exercises that will energize you while you shelter in place.

4:00pm
 
6:00pm
 
Moderator: Japman Kaur (QC)

Description: We will all have an opportunity to engage with each other and the speakers during retreat – but sometimes there are questions that require further discussion. This Q&A panel is designed for you to ask any questions you may have to the speakers (anonymously or otherwise), where a moderator will be present to guide the conversation in a direction that provides clarity and answers.

6:15pm
 
6:30pm
  Closing Remarks
6:30pm
 
7:00pm
  So Dar Raihras

Attendee Guidelines