Tuesday, July 27, 2010
In fact there is a bill going through the Senate right now that is addressing issues caused by oil drilling but far lacks in substantive changes to our environmental practices. Given all of the information that we have it is hard to believe that we have done so little as a country. Each of us is responsible for this big mess that we are in, and we can get ourselves out of it!
I invite you to call your Senator and voice your opinion. I just did it and it took all of 2 minutes, and it felt really good.
In fact you can call this number set up by an organization called Repower America. They will give you basic talking points, and connect you with your Senator based on your zip code.
The number is (877) 973-7693
If you do make the call, let us know how it went!
Snatam Kaur Khalsa
Here is the email from Repower America:
This could have been the week that the Senate stood up and did the right thing. Instead, a minority of Senators chose to block action on comprehensive climate legislation.
So today, we're telling them loud and clear: We're going to keep fighting until they take action to help solve the climate crisis and build a clean energy economy.
Thousands of you pledged to call. Now, let's hold our leaders accountable by calling today.
It's important to let our leaders know that we are disappointed. We needed the Senate to act for the benefit of all Americans -- not let Senators in the pockets of big oil and coal run the show.
Just call our easy-to-use, toll-free Repower America hotline at 1-877-9-REPOWER (1-877-973-7693). You'll be given simple talking points and be connected directly to one of your Senators after entering your zip code.
Call now: 1-877-973-7693
Report your call afterward.
The Climate Protection Action Fund's Repower America campaign
Monday, July 26, 2010
Snatam Kaur Khalsa
Email from Repower America:
We're in the middle of the one of the worst environmental crises in the history of our country. And a minority of Senators in the pocket of fossil fuel interests are blocking any action in the immediate future on a bill that limits carbon pollution and helps solve the climate crisis.
Instead, it looks likely that the Senate will vote on a narrow oil spill response bill that only includes minor energy provisions -- and completely fails to address the underlying causes of the climate crisis and fossil fuel catastrophes like the oil spill.
Make sure your Senators know that band-aid measures are unacceptable -- and that you're disappointed and not going away. Join Repower America and pledge to call your Senators this Tuesday when they're back in Washington. Tell them that you and millions of Repower America supporters won't give up until our country takes leadership on climate change and clean energy.
Click here to pledge that you'll call the Senate on Tuesday, July 27.
Once you sign up, we'll email you on Tuesday and give you everything you need to make the call.
This disappointing announcement from the Senate follows what could only be described as a shock and awe campaign by corporate polluters. The oil and gas industry spent $213 million lobbying in this Congress alone.*
Apparently, that's what it costs to block action on this crucial issue.
But stopping debate doesn't just benefit big oil and dirty coal. It also robs Americans of the opportunity to reap the benefits of clean energy, including:
• Creating millions of new American jobs
• Ending our addiction to oil and dirty fossil fuels
• Addressing the threat of climate change
• Strengthening our national security
We need to change this storyline.
This is not the future I want to leave my kids and future generations. Like every parent, I want to provide them a world with better opportunities -- and a healthy, prosperous planet is non-negotiable.
Remind our leaders of our priorities, our values and our resolve. Join me today in pledging to call your Senators.
Sign up and make the pledge here.
Then stay tuned for our Tuesday email with calling instructions.
The Climate Protection Action Fund's Repower America campaign
* Center for Responsive Politics, "Oil & Gas Influence & Lobbying," last accessed July, 22 2010. http://www.opensecrets.org/industries/indus.php?ind=e01
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Here is a picture of Jap Preet Kaur and I with the lovely ladies taking the course.
Congratulations to those ladies for dedicating themselves to learning such amazing and life changing technology as the Siri Singh Sahib's teachings on pregnancy. This is a wonderful course taught by Tarn Taran Kaur, and you can find out more about it or other courses related to women by visiting her website at www.kundaliniwomen.org. Also there is another wonderful teacher who facilitates a great pregnancy teacher training course, and who has put together great videos for pregnancy, along with an incredible book called "Bountiful, Beautiful, Blissful". Her name is Gurumukh Kaur, and you can find out more about her by visiting www.goldenbridgeyoga.com.
Recently I was interviewed about our new Divine Birth album and my experience with pregnancy. The interviewer, Laurence Turner, gave us permission to post it in this blog. I hope you enjoy it! To find out more about her, please visit www.pregnancy-yoga.net. Here is the interview:
Laurence: Snatam, it is a honor to be speaking with you. I am a Pregnancy Yoga teacher here in the UK near London and expecting my second child. I would like to also represent here my pregnancy Yoga Students. Please tell us about your personal experience in pregnancy and birth. What is the yogic practice that you found the most useful
- to help with pregnancy ailments
- for labour preparation
Snatam: I really enjoyed my pregnancy for the most part. It felt so amazing to have this being growing inside of me. It was something that my husband and I had been praying for. So with the grace of God and my Guru, we were able to really focus our intentions and prayer to create a Divine space for our baby to come into. We did this through Kundalini Yoga and the teachings of Yogi Bhajan, which really encompasses the practice of yoga, meditation and chanting. It was through chanting track two, Jamiaa Poot, that is on our Divine Birth album, that I was able to release many fears about the experience of pregnancy and the preparation for birth. You can take a look at the meaning of these sacred words composed by the fifth Sikh Guru and see that they are simply positive affirmations that the experience of pregnancy and birth is celebrated and held sacred in Divine energy. The power of a mother's mental projection can create or destroy a sacred space for the being growing inside of you. This sacred recitation not only helped me to create good energy every day inside me but to also maintain it and grow it for the coming days of birth and motherhood.
There are so many incredible Kundalini yoga sets for pregnant ladies. I will tell you about just a few to illustrate the grace and beauty that is available in this science. Ladies, you will know what I am talking about! When you are pregnant and constipated because all of your internal organs have moved with your growing womb, there is nothing more beautiful then doing a simple 45 minute kriya for a week and be totally healed. Through the practice of Kundalini Yoga every day I also believe that my daughter was positioned in the womb correctly for the birth. Finally, my hips were saved by yogic walking, or Charn Jap. The list goes on, and I am sure there are other mothers out there with even more transformational experiences.
Laurence: I feel I know little about the Sikh tradition and the associated Mantras and Kirtans. Is it necessary to have some knowledge to gain full benefit from the practice?
- should the students listen or also recite the Mantra as a meditation?
- how does the sound vibration work on the mother/baby?
Snatam: Our spiritual teacher incorporated many sacred recitations from the Sikh way of life into the science of Kundalini yoga. Some of the most avid practitioners are not Sikhs. It's just that these sacred recitations work, and I believe that it was his spirit of service that opened things up for him to share in this way. I grew up as a Sikh and have some natural experience with these recitations. Because the effectiveness of the recitations is due to specific meridian stimulation as the tongue touches the roof of the mouth, it is important to have some training. We designed our cd, Divine Birth, as a kind of training tool. Each of the sacred recitations is recorded without music and slow enough so that the beginner can grasp on to the words. In fact this is what I did every day of my pregnancy. I recited the first track (Poota Maataa Kee Asees) eleven times a day to create the sacred energy of love and prayer between my daughter and I. Then I also recited the second track (Jammia Poot) eleven times per day, which according to the teachings of Yogi Bhajan, is to be recited before the 120th day of pregnancy to bring the soul of a saint. In Kundalini Yoga it is taught that a soul enters the body on the 120th day of pregnancy. I certainly felt a major shift on that day and opted to keep reciting Jammiaa Poot throughout my whole pregnancy because I was simply enjoying the energy of it so much.
It is hard to describe the feeling that is created between mother and baby after doing these recitations. In fact my husband also did these recitations so I will include him as well. There is this unspoken serenity and bliss in our family. Granted we have out hard days too. But there is a feeling of quiet peace that is just there that gives us a bit of flexibility to go with the ebb and flow, that gives us an internal sweetness and nectar when times are hard, and an internal compass to bring the sacred back into our lives. These sacred recitations come from the Divine light of the Sikh Gurus which lives in the sound current each time the words are recited. Whatever your faith may be this energy is available to you.
Laurence: Could you tell us more about the importance of sound currents ?
Snatam: The very first words of the Bible are... "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was God." The first words of the Siri Guru Granth Sahib, the sacred scriptures of the Sikhs is... "The Creator of all is the One God and truth is God's Name."
In many traditions it is understood that the flow of creation comes from the sound current of the Divine which manifests itself through God's Name. When we chant God's Name we tap into our own purity that is naturally within each of us. The more you can tap into this space the more your thoughts,vibration, actions, and words will reflect this space. Chanting God's Name is simply a way to make the space of internal purity a reality on this earth plane. It brings the heavens to the earth. In the words of Yogi Bhajan, "We are not humans here to experience the spirit, we are spirit here to experience being human."
Sacred sound current creates a home and sanctuary for your spirit on this great journey of life. It makes life Divine, and brings great joy and spiritual pleasure in the face of anything... pain, emotion, turmoil, and life! But to really experience it you have got to immerse yourself into it in your daily life. I encourage you to start chanting with your family and friends on a regular basis. I encourage you to have a regular personal practice, and watch the miracles that will unfold.
Laurence: Could you tell us more about your personal experience of how the energy of these sacred words can have a very real, positive effect?
Snatam: While in labor I chanted with so much focus because of the pain, that I have never felt so close to God and Guru as that time. It was such a beautiful blessing. Throughout our days now, as our daughter is now 20 months old we start each day together by chanting. It doesn't matter what the day has to bring, I know that if we chant our Grace will be covered. May you have this blessed experience as well.
Thursday, July 15, 2010
We had an incredible time at Khalsa Youth Camp up at Ram Das Puri. The kids at the camp range from ages 4 to 12. The children were just so radiant and beautiful. For the second time in my life I served the camp as the Sikh Dharma teacher. The last time was when I was 16. My husband Sopurkh Singh taught some really great yoga classes to the children, and looked after Jap Preet. Jap Preet was running all throughout camp, and learned how to hold her own as all of the children poured over her with love and excitement. During the day, the children had a variety of activities such as rock climbing, martial arts, out door skills, Sikh Dharma and art. The Sikh Dharma class was inside the beautiful Gurdwara (Sikh place of sanctuary) up at the site. In the class I told many stories from Sikh history, and shared my own personal life stories of my experience with Sikhism. It was really cool to see how the children were so interested in really connecting with the Divine....some were Sikhs and others weren’t. It kind of didn’t make a difference in the end. The children really had a way of inspiring us to be real. And so we were able to really go beyond religious differences and just connect to the purity of our practice.
I told a little story to the children one day.... some of you may have heard me tell this story already. I originally heard it from Bibi ji, Siri Singh Sahib’s (aka Yogi Bhajan) beloved wife.
A yogi sat meditating by a river. People came to the river, waded in, and began washing themselves and saying with each splash of water, “please take them away!”
The yogi asked the people what they were doing. The people replied, “We are giving all of our mistakes and misdeeds to the river!”
The yogi in his meditation found the spirit of the river and asked the spirit, “What do you do with all of their mistakes and misdeeds?”
The river spirit replied, “I take them to the ocean!”
The yogi in his meditation found the spirit of the ocean and asked the spirit, “What do you do with all of their mistakes and misdeeds?”
The spirit of the ocean replied, “Oh that’s easy, I just let them evaporate up into the clouds!”
So the yogi in his meditation found the spirit of the clouds and asked” What do you do with all of their mistakes and misdeeds?”
The spirit of the clouds responded, “Oh great yogi, I find the houses where the mistakes and misdeeds originally came from and rain down on them!”
Moral of the story.... well just do good things, and build the grace and beauty of your life step by step, action by action, word by word and thought by thought.
I told that story this year to the 4-7 year old campers at Khalsa Youth Camp, and asked them... what are good things that you can do in your life?
I got a lot of really good answers..... “Share”, “Be Kind”, etc.
But.... this one from a little 4 year old boy named Ravi Das blew me away. He raised his hand up high, and I called on him after many of the children had already spoken. He said with a radiant look of angelic connection and knowledge....
“Be a servant of love.”
Hey now... isn’t that beautiful?!
Well.... God bless you... whoever is reading this. May your summer be filled with infinite blessings.
Oh and by the way if you want to send your kids to Khalsa Youth Camp next year check out, www.3HO.org. I highly recommend it. And a bonus for the parents is that there are courses offered by 3HO in the same general area for you while your children are at camp. So, the whole family gets a big uplift.
Please enjoy some of my pictures from the camp.
Snatam Kaur Khalsa