Bipran Ki Reet
You are probably wondering what "Bipran Ki Reet" is and what is has to do with Sikhism. Well, the answer is very simple. Bipran Ki Reet is a phrase which refers to the Principles of Brahmins or of the Hinduism. The phrase itself is derived from two words: "Bipar" meaning Brahmin and "Reet" meaning principle. Combined these two terms make Bipran Ki Reet which is used as a reference to a distancing from Sikh principles and some sort of following of mindless rituals.
So in other words following Bipran Ki Reet is going away from Sikhi. Most people know the most common practices of Hindus such as idol worship but there are many other that we overlook. Every Sikh should know what it is and you can only become true Sikh if you follow teachings of Gurus but not Hindus. Guru Gobind Singh Ji said:
"Jab Lag Khalsa Rahe Niara, Tab Lag Tej Dioon Mein Sara
Jab Eh Gaye Bipran Ki Reet, Mein Na Karoon In Ki Parteet"
This means as long as the Khalsa follow only one path of the Gurus and follow the teaching of Guru Granth Sahib, Guru Gobind Singh Ji will always be with the Khalsa. But if the Khalsa starts following Bipran Ki Reet then Guru Ji will not help the Khalsa because a Sikh is not allowed to follow Bipars (Brahmans). So I have studied some common Bipran Ki Reet practices that Sikhs follow and I believe it will be helpful to those who want to become Sikhs and to those who want to learn what they are and stay away from them.
1. Stay away from psuedo Gurus and believing they are like God. Do not go to any Sant Baba or saint for help because what do you expect a beggar human to give you. Yes, those Babas ask God for help too. Why go to Pakhandis (lairs) (Radha Swami, Nirankaris, Namdharis, Saccha Sodda, Noormahals etc.) when you can follow the path of the Guru and become one with God. Guru Granth Sahib has all of the solutions of every single problem. Do not do Dhaga (thread) or Taweet (Voodoo) which people believe does bad for others. Bani is greater than any black magic or evil power. Nothing can harm those who follow Guru Granth Sahib and do Naam Simran every day.
Do not believe in any gods and goddesses that Hindus believe in. Hindus have three-hundred thirty millions gods and goddesses (330,000,000), which includes snakes, fire, water, trees, stones etc. But the Guru says God doesn't live somewhere out there or up in heaven, he lives in your heart. He has put his Jot (divine light) in you and you should try to become one with Him by following the Guru's teaching. So the first thing is following the Guru Granth Sahib and not anything else.
Do not wish you will give some certain amount of money to the Gurudwara if Guru Ji does your work or helps you with a task after you pray to him. This is called Sukhna and it is like bribing God. No one can bribe the Guru. It is a Bipran Ki Reet. Live in his grace and be content, the you will be happy.
2. Do not do Naam Simran or patth for your own good, like for you business or job. What's wrong with that is, you do Patth for your own purpose or for your own benefit in your life not for attainment of the Guru and for Sarbatt Da Bhalla (Good for all). Once you get that work done, you don't do it anymore. The purpose of doing Simran of 5 Banis in the morning and Rehraas and Sohila Sahib is just to get you started so you start doing it more. Do Naam Simran everyday and pray to Guru. This is the solution to all problems.
3. In Sikhism women and men are all equal. They have same rights as men do. Many times after a wedding a woman is told that now she should treat her husband like a God and shouldn't call her husband with his name. But that is a Bipran Ki Reet. Men have the same type of blood as women do and women are no different. Why doesn't anyone tell a man that he should treat his wife like a God and shouldn't call her by her name. Every person makes mistakes and does do sins. Only God doesn't do any sins nor makes mistakes. So how can a man be a God. Women are not inferior. Both husband and wife are equal and no one is God of one another. There is only one God. They both should respect each other and treat each other equally. The truth is that Brahman started this whole thing so that women could not be the same as a man and they would be the slaves of men. But the Gurus rejected this idea because one who gives you birth cannot be inferior. Who gave birth to all kings, prophets and everybody else? It's always women. So a woman can't be inferior. Without women the world would end. Guru Ji said:
"We are conceived in woman, We are born to woman.
It is to woman we get engaged, And then get married.
Woman is our lifelong companion, And supporter of our survival.
It is through woman That we establish social relationships.
Why should we denounce her When even kings and great men are born from her?"
4. Do not worship pictures of Gurus because those pictures can't even talk and how would they take you across the life of ocean since they sink in water. Worshipping and bowing to pictures is a Bipran Ki Reet. Do not bow to pictures or say your prayers in front of them. They can't listen. Do not worship pictures, statues or anything else. Tying threads to the Manji Sahib (little table Guru Ji placed on) is also Bipran Ki Reet.
5. Do not believe in any Hindu gods, especially Rama and Krishna since Hindu writers are trying to prove that Gurus and Rama and Krishna are the same. So lets look at the reality of Rama and Krishna. They both never preached anything nor did they give any new message to the people. They did whatever Brahmins were doing before which is idol worship. Krishna never even went out of UP. According to Hinduism Krishna had 16,108 wives and Radha wasn't one of his wives. Ten sons and one daughter was born from each wife. This is so lustful.
Rama did go outside of his town but only for Sita. Did he preach anything new or did he get people out of ritual idol worship of Brahmins? NO, he didn't. He had to go with Brahmins in jungles and asked for food from people like a beggar. The Truth is Rama and Krishna never existed. Brahmin just made up these stories to make people worship him. Think about it, did any of them do anything different than what Brahmin used to or now does? No, they didn't. Brahmin tried to prove that not even God can be successful and achieve salvation without being a servant of Brahmin and serving him. Guru Nanak Dev Ji went as far as Mecca in west and in east He went to Nepal, Burma, Assam and Tibet. He went as far as Sri Lanka in south. Guru Ji left home and sought the good of all people. Guru Ji didn't receive any education from teachers since it was not the true education. Instead in many cases he enlightened His "educators". Guru Ji never accepted any principles of Hinduism because they are wrong. So believing that Sikhs are part of Hinduism is Bipran Ki Reet and one should not consider himself/herself a Sikh if he/she believes that.
6. Some Bipran Ki Reet is even in Sikh wedding. Throwing flower on a couple at the fourth Lavan in the presence of Guru is not accepted in Sikhism. Brothers helping their sister during Lavan is also prohibited because the bride can walk herself unless she is disabled. This is how it all started: Once there was a wedding in a Hindu family and bride was crippled. She wasn't able to walk, so her brothers helped her on her way during faray (rounds) around the fire. And this became part of Hindu wedding and now Sikhs do it.
For Bridegroom, wearing Kalgi, Sehra and haars in the presence of Guru is Bipran Ki Reet. Again the bridegroom was blind in one eye and to hide this he covered his face with a piece of cloth. But the excuse people used was that he was so shy. This is where wearing Sehra started but why cover your face. Married women practice things like "sindoor, Mangalsutra, Bindi and having pierce in nose, ears etc". These things are degrading to women by reminding them of their marriage, while at the same time a married man does not have any signs of marriage.
7. Celebrating Hindu festival is part of Bipran Ki Reet. Hindu festivals are Lohri, Holi and Rakhi that Sikhs in Punjab celebrate. You guys already know the story of Prehlad (a Bhagat mentioned in Gurbani). His aunt tried to burn him but he couldn't get burnt because he was the true devotee of God. From there people started celebrating Lohri and that's why people burn woods at night and they pray to fire that Don't harm our sons either like you didn't harm Prehlad. This festival is only for men. When a boy is born people distribute food, clothes etc.. but when a girl is born they do nothing. And think that the fire couldn't burn Prehlad and he was a boy so in order to pray to fire it has to be a boy. Besides a woman is considered inferior in Hinduism. This is all Bipran Ki Reet. Holi is a hindu festival named after Holika and Hindus throw color powders on each other. Guru Ji gave us Holla Mahalla to celebrate by practicing arms.
Rakhi is against the principles of Sikhi because a sister ties a thread on the wrist of her brother, which means that he will protect her no matter what. But doesn't this show the weakness of womanhood. In Sikhism everyone is equal and women have equal rights as men. Women wear Kirpans like men and they are expected to protect themselves. Don't you know what Mata Bhago (Bhaag Kaur) did and don't forget the sacrifice of Maharani Jindan (Jind Kaur). Women are not weak. They are strong. In Sikhi women are not expected to look upon their husbands to protect them. If that was the case then what would be the point of wearing Kirpans? Guru Gobind Singh Ji said when all other meanings are failed its your right to draw a sword. So let it be that way. How do you know your brother would really help you in danger. What if he's not there to help you or runs away. Guru Ji ordered Khalsa to practice arms and be able to protect yourselves. This applies o both men and women or Singhs and Kaurs.
8. Thinking that some certain days are special is Bipran Ki Reet. God created all the days. Don't think Saturday is a bad day or Thursday so its not good to start work on those days or anything like that. Some people believe that they shouldn't wash their hair on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday since Devtas are usually angry on those days. But Gurbani says that all Devtas are under God's order and they can't do anything on their own. They are in the cycle of death and birth like us. So why be afraid of them. On wedding occasions don't think of special days and watch Patri (the book of Brahmins). All days are good. Don't show your hands to Brahmins to know what your future is. Guru Ji said you are able to carve your own future by the grace of God. Your future is based on your sins and virtues. Don't listen to ignorant Brahmins. How can they know your future since they don't know their own future. If they knew something about future they would be rich and wouldn't open up little shops.
9. Fasting is also Bipran Ki Reet. Muslims do it as well as Hindus. How can you meet God by starving yourself? God has provided you with good natural foods like fruits and vegetables (not meat because meat causes death of an animal which is a sin). Women wish good for their husbands by fasting. Where is equality in this. In Sikhism husband and wife are to have same responsibilities and expected to work together. If woman does it then how come a man doesn't do it? A man has no responsibilities for his wife or what? It is Bipran Ki Reet for Sikhs. Guru Ji rejected the idea of fasting whether it is a Hindu way or Muslim way. Muslims fast only for a month during Ramadan because this month is considered holy. Guru Ji says if this is the way to meet God then what about other eleven months?
The Muslims set aside eleven months, and claim that the treasure is only in the one month. (Page 1349)
"The mind is not softened by fasting or austerities. Nothing else is equal to worship of the Lord's Name." (Page 905)
"The pilgrimage to shrines, fasting, cleanliness and self-mortification are not of any avail, nor are the rituals, religious ceremonies and hollow adoration's. Deliverance, O! Nanak! is in the devotional service of God. Through duality the mortal is engrossed in worldliness. (Page 75)
10. Do not believe in Caste.
"The Lord asks not mortals caste and birth, so find thou out the Lord's True Home (truth). That alone is man's caste and that his glory, as are the deeds which he does." (Page 1330)
11. In Darbar Sahib people take bath in Sarowar, especially at Dukh Bhanjani Beri. They think that the Beri (tree) would wash away their sins and they will go to heaven. While taking a holy bath is completely in line with Sikhism as it cures diseases and heals the sick, it does not deliver salvation. Hindus take bath in Ganges (Ganga) thinking that this is the only way to achieve salvation. But they should look at the water of Ganges in Delhi. People wash their clothes and its all dirty there. In Sikhism the easiest way to achieve salvation is to do Naam Simran and to do Seva (community service) so that one learn humility. Taking bath in Sarowar thinking that this way you will go to heaven is completely ignorance. A GurSikh is to go beyond heaven and hell which is SachKhand. A tree cannot wash away your sins. Sikhs have nothing to do with that tree. This is Bipran Ki Reet because Hindus worship trees especially Tulsi thinking that it will get them to heaven. Hindus consider Tulsi to be holiest tree and thinking that Dukh Bhanjani Beri will get you to heaven and will take your sins is wrong. It will do nothing. Guru Ji rejected the idea of taking bath in rivers and Teerath Ishnaan. Guru Ji gave Sikhs the new way of doing Naam Simran and doing Seva. Water only washes your body not your mind and if mind is not clean you are not clean. Your mind has to be clean to become one with God and Naam Simran is the way to clean your mind. Dukh Bhanjani Beri will not do anything. It's idol worship and worshiping trees is against the principles of Sikhism. Reciting JapJi Sahib 84 times on the steps of Goindwal Sahib will not get anyone to heaven or salvation because then people might think that they can do anything they want because they have achieved salvation and they don't need to take Amrit. It is a Bipran Ki Reet.
So please stay away from Bipran Ki Reet and follow only Sikhi. Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh.