Next detention Singh continued to explain his religion to me. A religion not of the kirk but of the heart. “Don’t brood John. You are not damned. You simply have not found your own particular way to Enlightenment and Godhood. We Sikhs embrace all, we share all, we invite all in to share with us. We share our way to God and invite everyone to share with us their way to God. You must trust and believe John that everyone can and will be saved.” Singh could see I was being dense. “Imagine light. Describe it John.”
“White, bright, sky, above us, something you cannot hold in your fist.”
“Imagine if that bright light strikes a glass prism. What happens?”
“Oh yes. I saw one of those once! The light turns into a rainbow! Just like in the sky after rain!”
“Imagine that the bright white light is Godhood. Now imagine how the prism breaks that abstract white light into colors a person can see more easily. Red. Blue. Yellow. Green. Violet.” I nodded not really understanding. Then Singh continued. “Now imagine that those colors are different forms of Godhood. One Universal God is hard for some people to see and as you say, you cannot hold it in your hand. But Red or Green is at least something you can more easily appreciate, adore, and love. So while you and I can worship the One God who is the Bright White Light others find it more comfortable to worship Red: Shiva the Destroyer of Illusion and Enslavement. Or Blue: Brahma the Creator of the Universe. Or Yellow: Vishnu the Preserver of the Universe . Or if you mix these Primary Colors together you can have Green (Yellow and blue) which might be for instance Ganesha the Elephant God of Wisdom and Prosperity. Or Violet ( blue and red): Krishna the All Conquering Force of Love, or Orange (red and yellow): Rama the Heroic Warrior!”
“What is the prism then?” I asked.
“The Wise Ones of History. They stand on the mountain and they see the purity of the White Bright Light. But then they look down and see people lost and out of pity they come down. Oh John! They delay their own transformation through Enlightenment! Instead of entering Nirvana they come back to help those people who are unable to see the purity of the White Bright Light. They show those who are struggling how to see Divinity in an easier shape. Jesus. Or our own Guru. The Buddha. And I suppose……[and Singh gritted his teeth] even Mohammad.
But I am sure I am boring you so let us resume Sanscrit!” We did but I always remembered how Singh explained religion to me. Mother and her bleak black kirk had thrown me out like a howling child. I felt that Singh was trying to tell me that someday I might find another way to Godhood. Mother’s view of the Bright White Light was Black. Black Light. I could not worship Mother’s Black Light. But I know that out there was Bright White Light. Or perhaps as Divine Rainbow of Light. But there was some sort of the Divine Light there waiting for me.