Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Dastaar - The Crown of the Khalsa

The turban is our Guru's gift to us. It is how we crown ourselves as the Singhs and Kaurs who sit on the throne of commitment to our own higher consciousness. For men and women alike, this projective identity conveys royalty, grace, and uniqueness. It is a signal to others that we live in the image of Infinity and are dedicated to serving all. The "bana" or form, the personal appearance of a Sikh, is one of the foremost ways that a Sikh maintains his or her consciousness as the Guru intended. The Guru has given his Sikh specific instructions to keep his or her natural form as created by God. Thus, all hair is maintained, uncut, and untrimmed. The Guru has given his Sikh a standard of dress which distinguishes him or her as a Sikh.
Turbans go way back in history as part of a spiritual practice. The top of your head is the tenth gate or the crown chakra. It is normally covered by hair that acts as antennae to protect the top of the head from sun and exposure, as well as to channel sun and vitamin D energy. Coiling or knotting the hair at the solar centers channels one’s radiant energy and helps retain a spiritual focus. The 10th Sikh Master, Guru Gobind Singh, taught his Sikhs to take the next step: Put a turban on the head covering the coiled, uncut hair. The pressure of the multiple wraps keeps the 26 bones of the skull in place. There are pressure points on the forehead that keep you calm and relaxed. Turbans cover the temples, which protects you from mental or psychic negativity of other people. You feel clarity and readiness for the day and for what may come to you from the Unknown.

Wrapping a turban everyday is our declaration that this head, this mind is dedicated to our Creator. The turban becomes a flag of our consciousness as well as our crown of spiritual royalty. Covering your head is an action with the attitude that there is something greater than you know. Covering your head is also a declaration of humility, of your surrender to God. The turban tells others that we are different. By having a distinct appearance, Sikhs become accountable for their actions. Our distinct Sikh appearance not only makes us think more often about our conduct and its reflection upon a wider society, it also makes us reflect upon our own ideals and how they reflect the teachings of the Siri Guru Granth Sahib.
The full article contains much more information:
  1. Bana: Appearance & Form
  2. What is the Sikh Identity?
  3. Turban - Gift of the Guru
  4. Turban as Technology
  5. Turban in the Rehit (Code)
  6. At what age should boys shift from wearing patkas to wearing full turban (pagri)?
  7. Should females coil and wrap their hair the same as males?
  8. Why do Sikh women wear the chuni over their turban?
  9. When should girls cover their heads?
  10. Why do Western Sikh women wear turbans, when most Indian women do not?
  11. Why don't all Sikhs tie turbans?
  12. Why should I wear my turban? Is there some process I can go through to help me understand?
  13. If I don’t wear a turban, can I still be a Sikh?
  14. What is the purpose of different colored turbans?
  15. How can we feel comfortable about wearing turbans in public and on the job?
  16. Personal Stories on The Turban and Being

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