Why do so many Sikhs think that putting all your energy into acquiring a big house, a big car and a huge television is in tune with Guru’s teachings ?
I recognise that when you are on a high level of spirituality you can experience the greatest luxury and the simplest lifestyle without your spiritual balance being disturbed by it.
Even I learned to accept food as it comes, whether I am offered a feast or just simple roti and dal. I enjoy the simple and the luxury food. In Panjab I appreciated proper toilets and bathrooms in western style houses but also accepted it when I had to wash at a tap in the wall and had to do ‘my business’ in the fields when in villages.
Many Sikhs moved from the villages in Panjab to western countries in order to better themselves. It is perfectly legitimate to want better chances for your children, to want to live in a society with freedom of speech. But a better life is not a life rich in material goods, a better life is a life rich in spirituality.
There is no merit in being poor. But owning a house is not more spiritual than renting a flat, having a Mercedes is not more spiritual than having a bus pass, a house that looks like something from a catalogue is not more spiritual than a place that looks as if people live in it.
Guru’s Sikhs agree with Kabir when he asks Vahiguru to give him a small house, a bed and simple food, and then he could dedicate his life to God.
Too much is as damaging to the soul as too little. Few people can be spiritual while being homeless and desperately looking for their next crust of bread. Equally only spiritual giants can be filthy rich and not be attached to their wealth.
Guru Gobind Singh lived at the court of Patna like a prince and also had no wants when he lived in Anandpur Sahib. He lived in the jungle and spent the night in huts after he left Chamkaur Sahib. Guru Gobind Singh, unlike us, was a spiritual giant. Guru’s life was dedicated to spiritual values, he could live both in rich and poor surroundings and be in sahaj, in spiritual balance.
We should be like Bhai Laloo, make an honest living and live a simple life. If we are successful in our careers, we should not waste our money on luxury