Many thanks to Veronica Sidhu for this Study Guide
Lessons from the Movie “Kaur”
- To understand the challenges Saibhang Kaur and Mai Bhago faced.
- To compare and contrast Saibang Kaur to Mai Bhago. Who helped them?
- To determine that the virtues of respect, courage and heeding inner guidance will help each of us to fulfill our destiny.
What was the very basic challenge that both Siabhang Kaur and Mai Bhago faced? What was it they they had in common even though they were born in different times? Right! They were both girls. Why was that a challenge? It was a challenge because in both Mai Bhago’s time and Saibhang’s time, many people thought and still think that girls can only do certain things like make rotis and learn household care. Is there something wrong with that? There is nothing wrong with cooking and taking care of children; but if a girl wants to be a soldier or scientist she should be able to do that, the same way a boy who wants to be a cook or teacher and to take care of children should be able to do so without being shamed or made fun of.
Besides being girls, how was Saibang like Mai Bhago? Each of them had a person who respected them as individuals and, in turn, they each respected the teaching that that person gave them. Who were those helpers and how did the girls show them respect?
Mai Bhago’s father was a martial artist. He respected her desire to learn what he knew and she respected him and made the effort to learn. Did she know when she started how she would use it? No. She was following her inner guidance, Waheguru’s hukam. She was given an opportunity to learn martial arts and she took it. Later, it turned out that she would lead an army for Guru Gobind Singh ji because it was the right thing to do, no matter what.
What did Saibhang Kaur’s inner guidance tell her? Right! To join the Science Club and learn about science. Who gave her a challenge? Right! Her parents and the boys in the club. Who helped her? Right, her grandmother. How did her grandmother help her? Right! By listening to the story of Mai Bhago, she got courage to be herself. Does she know where this will lead? Not yet. She may become an astronaut or a teacher or a chemist; she can’t know that yet. But she does know that God has given her an opportunity to learn something and she respects that and has the courage to put in the effort.
Waheguru has put each of us in a place with people who will teach us and challenge us. Mai Bhago and Saibhang Kaur discovered God’s special plan for them. Sometimes it is to teach us what NOT to do! We are very sure they will never tell any girl that she can’t do something. Have you ever learned from people who were doing something wrong. They are just hurting themselves. You may have said to yourself—I’m never going to make the same mistake. That’s learning too.
How do we know what Waheguru’s hukam is for us? When we get up in the morning do we say the Mool Mantr? Do we ask our Inner Guide to help us to be clear to learn whatever we can today and do our best? This inner guide is the Guru, the aspect of God that is the teacher to us. This guide is also our conscience who helps us to become good and lead happy lives. We need to connect with our loving Waheguru every day.
You are the lucky ones. You are studying Gurbani and about the the lives of the gurus. Are you putting effort into learning? You will be using this learning in your life, but right now you may not know how, just as Saibhang does not know how she will use science in her life.
Remember the word “Sikh” means a student. A true Sikh is always learning from every situation. And when we are following our inner Guru, we are courageously learning to be ourselves.