Amrit Vela/ First Sadhana

siri guru granth sahib

by S.S Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa, courtesy of


Sat Nam,

Bowing to my Guru first thing after awakening and bathing

My only prayer is gratitude

Thank you

I am here and you, my Guru are here

Thank you for the safety of my journey

Thank you for guiding me surely through the winds and rain to this place

Where I might bring my head low

Present it to you and pray you might accept it

My first place

At the feet of my Guru




The air is cold and sweet as it is meant to be

The sky is clear and starry as you have blessed it to be

The space around me is filling with souls like minded and assuredly holy

Dressed warm in many coats and and clothes and colors against the cold and the early hour

We gather to read a not so ancient prayer

That speaks of the entire Universe

And yet says to me that only this time

And this space is




Gently repeated until finally


I can listen and hear and remember and understand and perhaps live this truth

Live this dharma

Live this way in which each day is stolen fruitfully from a painful fated future

Simply destined, clear, perhaps courageous, conscious, prayerful,




Exercises which I can and cannot do

Due mostly to my age and arm and knee and whatever else may be in my akashic physicality

The Spinal Flex and Sufi Grind I do, quite easily

But Wheel and Cobra are quite beyond my current senseless willingness to a won’t-ness

So I am content to struggle good humoredly with my failing body

Hopeful only of incidental success

Gained gently because of the past efforts reaping good karma in lieu of laziness

This is




There is the millisecond before the Word after the breath linked to the Sound inside the Moment

Of Truth

These mantras:

Ek Ong Kar

Wah Yantee

Ek Ong Kar (again)

Sat Siri, Siri Akhaal

Rahkay Raakhaanharee

Wahe Guru, Wahe Jio

Guru, Guru, Wahe Guru

Repeated repetitiously unafraid and unaware of boredom

Like oaths affirmed in both heart and head

A single voice joined to many other voices

Guided through and by the guitar’s vibrating strings and air passing through each throat

A musical instrument built of bodies

Alert to sleepy spines and the early hour’s call

To sleep

But don’t go back to sleep

Stay strong,

Stay straight

Remain in voice

Alert to a moment

We shall only recognize in its passing

Meditate O my mind




Walking down the lighted path

Dollar held between two prayerful palms

Praying for




A safe journey home

Akhaal for the returning soul

For births and birthdays

From all our doubts-deliverance




The Guru’s Order of the Day

And finally a warm and oily lump of sweetness

The Amrit Vehla’s payback


Held firmly

Shared with my soul


by S.S Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa, courtesy of

It was approximately 40 years ago, give or take a year, that I learned, much to my delight, about the practice of sadhana. I had been going to every Kundalini Yoga class at the ashram when I idly inquired about yoga practices outside of public classes. “Oh. sure,” someone said, “we get up every day around 3 AM and have a group practice called sadhana.” It was perfect. I had been an early riser my whole life and could think of nothing more inspiring than practicing yoga with the yogis who lived at the ashram, early in the morning (4 AM), everyday.
Since then, I can say that I have attended many, many more group sadhanas than I have missed. I have not been perfect by any means but it is a rare night when I go to sleep expecting to miss sadhana. I do awaken somedays, groggy, wondering if I will get up. On most, if I can scratch and claw my way to the bathroom, brush my teeth with potassium alum and clean my monkey glands (I love a good gag in the morning!) I will happily make an appearance before God and Guru in the sadhana room.

The next step of course is the one cool blessing of a cold shower. Without it, I would not find my way to morning sadhana. I could not imagine going to sadhana without a cold shower preceding it. That would be like showing up at my wedding ceremony with no bride! Impossible!

The only thing I treasure more than sadhana is the Kundalini Yoga which inhabits it. Every kriya, pranayam, meditation or posture that I practice is like uncovering a jewel in a basin of valueless rocks and gritty sand. They are not all easy to attain, a few are. But!They are perfect, as given by the Master and practiced with as much integrity that I can muster.

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