Nirankari Mission with Dr. Rajan Sachdeva

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and the right religious teaching is beautiful, most people get that right and
a few don’t. We witness that daily in our lives in class rooms, family, place of worship,
social gathering, sports or any endeavor. In class rooms, a majority of the
students pass; a few will not make it even though it was the same teacher and
the same books for all.  

I have a deep fascination for religion. I see the wisdom and beauty in each one
of them and have come to respect and love them all, equally yes, unequivocally.

His introduction of Dr. Sachdeva is one of the best intros I have seen

So, I
went to hear about the Nirankari Mission. “Unity Vs Uniformity – The need is not to dwell in uniformity but to able to exist with diverse styles and bring synergy in what we do together. Each individual is unique as created by divinity, it would be against divine nature if we force individuals to think and do alike. We should be able to think differently and yet leverage the formless link to bring synergy and prosperity. .

This is precisely the definition of Pluralism we have put forth – respecting the otherness of others and accepting the God given uniqueness of each one of us. You are who you are, and I am who I am and we have to figure how to live cohesively. 

Rajan Sachdeva, the guru representing the Mission and I had a conversation a
day earlier at a dinner at Gurdev Singh’s home. 
We connected instantly. One of the statements he made was that they don’t
believe in conversions, but share the truth about us and our connection with
God. Indeed, my work in Pluralism parallels that, you are who you are and I am
who I am, and let’s figure a way to live with least conflicts and tensions.
Everyone should have right to freely choose any religion they want any time.

I gave a short talk on the source of conflict and the need for us to know each
other. Knowledge leads to understanding, and understanding to acceptance and appreciation
of another point of view. Indeed, if we can learn to respect the otherness of
others and accept the God given uniqueness of each one of us, then conflicts
fade and solutions emerge.

Dr. Rajan Sachdeva’s key note address was about how we find God. The key is in
seeing the truth and majesty of his creation with humility and he said God is
within each one of us and everywhere.

He started with the story of the Elephant and the blind men.

The following is copied from his blog,
“No one can really know anybody,
however much we may claim to know them. We can only look at things from a
certain angle. We can never see anything as whole, in totality, at any given
time. We see and judge everything according to our own perceptions. We label
people as we see or happen to know them in certain situations. We can never know anyone completely because of
our own limitations.

The wise looks from every angle and knows that no one is all
good or all bad; completely righteous or completely evil. Knowing that no one
is perfect, they do not pass judgment.
Remember the ancient story of six blind men and the elephant
told by Buddha? The same story has been told with small
variations, in almost every cultural tradition.”

The full Elephant story is at

He narrated a story about a man tells his friends that he has the largest home in
New Delhi, and his friends were concerned that the man had nothing else to talk
other than his biggest house. Then one of the children pulls an Atlas, and asks
the man to find India on the large world map, which was about two inches in
size compared to the world, then the kid asks him to find New Delhi in it, and
there it was, a small dot in the world Map, and then he asks, uncle where is
your house in there?  The man got the

The Dr. Sachdeva goes on to share that if we go further and further out into
the expanse of the universe, the whole earth is smaller than that dot which
represented New Delhi. There is someone bigger than all of us, and we are
merely a speck as Carl Sagan had put it. Humility indeed builds bridges and
relationships and arrogance destroys it. When we realize our role in scheme of
the universe, we become a part of the whole bringing harmony.

Indeed, on my facebook I wrote a few days ago, who am I? And wrote the
following, “The ideal spiritual achievement
is realized when we become one with nature (God), meaning we believe and act as
part of the web, and not outside the web. The others parts and us make the
whole and It will be a cohesive, interconnected, interdependent world for all
of us.

What kills this harmony?
Arrogance prompted by selfishness and insecurities. How do we work towards it?
We accomplish that by respecting the otherness of others and accepting the God
given uniqueness of each one of us.
Think about it, no matter how
much we argue and disagree, we are still inhabitants of one earth, to a
Martian; we are all one and the same.

Dr. Rajan Sachdeva has a Phd in Music and has a great command over Hindi, Urdu, Sanskrit and has a working knowledge of Arabic and Farsi. A scholar in Guru Granth Saheb and Vedas. 

It was
a joy to hear him and when I get some time, I will expand my understanding of
his teaching. It was a joy to listen. There were a lot of things we had in common
in our understanding of religion and God.  

A side note: Although it is an Indian tradition to express humility by touching
the feet of the learned, I have felt the humility comes from respecting the
knowledge of others rather than bowing. In my note about my fascination with religion,
I must say, that I stopped going to the Mahabodhi society in Bangalore when the
priest insisted that I do not shake hands with him but touch his feet. That was
the last day I set foot in that temple.

Mike Ghouse

Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer
and a commentator on Pluralism at work place, politics, religion, society,
gender, race, culture, ethnicity, food and foreign policy. He is a staunch
defender of human rights and his book standing up for others will be out soon,
and a movie “Americans together” is in the making.  He is a frequent guest
commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major
news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post. All about him is
listed in 63 links and his writings are
at and 10
other blogs. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers
pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. 

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