Sunday, 16 March 2014

Sikhism An Oecumenical Religion (PUBLISHER’S NOTE)


          In a meeting of the Institute of Sikh Studies it was expressed that there was an evident gap in the Sikh literature, in so far as the works of late Sirdar Kapur Singh, the most distinguished and brilliant exponent of Sikh Theology in the Twentieth century, stood unpublished. It was proposed that the Institute should take steps for their publication. Accord­ingly, it was decided to approach Sardar Gurtej Singh to whom, it was learnt, Sirdar Kapur Singh had bequeathed his works and manuscripts. As a first installment, Sardar Gurtej Singh kindly agreed to edit and give us for publication the manuscript of “Sikhism — An Oecumenical Religion”. The Institute is grateful to him for his generous gesture.
          Sirdar Kapur Singh, as we all know was an unrivalled of the Sikh religion since his knowledge and comprehension, both of Indian and Semitic religions, and Western philosophies profound and up-to-date. The present work is, indeed, a masterly analysis, on the one hand, of the Sikh Religion, and on the other hand, of the proud rise of science and technology, and its continuing and baffling frustrations in solving the problems of man in the current century. Wittgenstein, who at one time claimed to say the last word on philosophy, and called all metaphysical propositions sense­less, wrote. “The result of philosophy is not a number of ‘philosophical propositions’, but to make propositions clear.” “My propositions are elucidatory in this way : he who understands finally, recognises them as senseless, when he has climbed out through them, on them, over them. (He must so to speak, throw away the ladder after he bas climbed on to it).” He must surmount these propositions; then he sees the world rightly. Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.” Kapur Singh writes that after all his claims and acrobatics, Wittgenstein ultimately speaks just the language of the mystic. It is in this context that Sirdar Kapur Singh lucidly expounds the lofty system of the Gurus as something unique in the religious thought of man. We hope the present publication will help the English-knowing world to under­stand clearly the position of the Sikh Gospel in the religious thought of the world. The publication has deliberately been priced low, so that the largest number could profit from this authentic exposition of the Sikh thought. The Institute would like to express its thanks to Dr. Hazara Singh for his advice and suggestions in the publication of this work.

                                                                    (Dr.) Kuldip Singh,
                                                                   Institute of Sikh Studies, 
December 25, 1992.

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