of Kundalini Yoga Siri Singh Sahib of Sikh Dharma
"There is no progress if there are no challenges;
there is no progress if there are no calamities; there
is no progress if there are no mishaps." Yogi Bhajan
you want to learn something, read about it.
If you want to understand something, write about it.
If you want to master something, teach it." Yogi Bhajan
to Succeed in Business As Taught to Us by the Animals By Yogi Bhajan
"To be effective and excel through current pressures
and challenges, we must learn from and adopt:
grip of a bear.
The skin of a rhino.
The loyalty of a dog.
The clarity of an owl.
The hunt of a wild dog.
The friendship of a wolf.
The intelligence of a rat.
The neutrality of a dove.
The attack of a cheetah.
The beauty of a peacock.
The diplomacy of a rabbit.
The endurance of a horse.
The responsibility of a cat.
The personality of a butterfly.
The planning of a lion's pride.
The communication of a crow.
The adjustment of a rattlesnake.
The executiveness of a king cobra.
The courage and strategy of a lion.
The brain and intuition of an elephant.
The vision and watch of the eagle's eye.
The penetration and impact of stampeding buffalo."
is Yogi Bhajan?
motto: "If you cannot see God in all, you cannot see God at all."
His credo: "It’s not the life that matters, it’s
the courage that you bring to it."
His challenge: "Don’t love me, love my teachings. Be ten
times greater than me.”
"It’s not the life that matters...
It’s the courage
that you bring to it."
Bhajan (Harbhajan Singh Khalsa Yogiji)
is the chief religious and administrative authority for the Ministry
of Sikh Dharma in the Western Hemisphere. Yogi Bhajan was given the
Ministerial title of "Siri
Singh Sahib" by the central governing body of the Sikh
religion, the Akal Takhat, in recognition of his unceasing missionary
work in the Western world. (See TheMahanTantric.com.)
He is an individual of remarkable insight, powerful energy and an
unwavering commitment to global healing and spiritual awareness.
Yogi Bhajan is a Master of Kundalini Yoga, the Yoga
of Awareness, and a dedicated and inspired teacher. Since arriving
in the United States in 1969, he has dedicated himself to bringing
meaning, dignity and a reconnection of Spirit into the lives of people
everywhere, especially those people who have become lost and confused
through the use of drugs.
As he has worked diligently to spread the science and practice of
Kundalini Yoga throughout the Western Hemisphere and beyond, Yogi
Bhajan has become widely recognized as a world leader and champion
of world peace and healing.
"Since ancient times, humans have found that they have zillions
of thoughts, billions of feelings, millions of emotions, thousands
of desires, hundreds of fantasies, and a multitude of realities and
We do everything to get rid of this pressure, because it is eating
us up inside. We try every method available, but ultimately, our mind
and thoughts rule us and bog us down."
Yogi Bhajan: A Brief Video History
have the Birthright to be Beautiful, Bountiful and Blissful."
Bhajan, Ph.D., is also a father,
gifted Doctor of Psychology, counselor and yogic therapist. The counseling
methodology called "The Science of Humanology," helps people
realize there inner strength and well being by giving them practical
tools to utilize with an every day lifestyle. Yogi
Bhajan In Memoriam
Group Finds Calling
In Homeland Security As reported in the New York Times
September 28, 2004
By Leslie Wayne
NM -- At the end of a dusty road, behind a barbed-wire fence, is Sikh
Dharma of New Mexico, a religious compound with a Golden Temple of
worship, a collection of trailers used for business and a quiet group
of people wandering the grounds wearing flowing white robes and turbans.
In the New Age culture here, the Sikh
Dharma community, founded in the early 1970's, provides a place
where followers of Yogi Bhajan, a Sikh spiritual leader and yoga master,
can live in harmony and follow their beliefs in vegetarianism, meditation
and community service. Except for Yogi Bhajan, who was born in India
and came to the United States in 1969, most members of the Sikh Dharma
are American-born and moved here to pursue their way of life.
The compound is also home to Akal Security, wholly owned by Sikh Dharma
and one of the nation's fastest-growing security companies, benefiting
from a surge in post-9/11 business. With 12,000 employees and over
$1 billion in federal contracts, Akal specializes in protecting vital
and sensitive government sites, from military installations to federal
courts to airports and water supply systems.
Akal Security reps with President Bush
Despite Akal's unusual lineage, Sikh Dharma members say they are following
an ancient Sikh tradition of the warrior-saint as well as showing
deftness at the more modern skill of landing federal contracts.
"Our customers look at who we are and filter it all out,'' Daya
Singh Khalsa, Akal's co-founder and senior vice president, said in
an interview in his office here. "They couldn't be less interested
in our religion and what we look like.''
Among Sikhs "there is no stigma in being financially successful,''
Mr. Khalsa added. "Prosperity does not take away from spiritual
net worth. You can have both."
Akal certainly bears that out. It is the nation's largest provider
of security officers for federal courthouses, with contracts for 400
buildings in 44 states, including the federal courthouse in Manhattan.
The company just won a major contract to guard Army bases and munitions
dumps in eight states, and also provides guards for the Ronald Reagan
Building in Washington, blocks from the White House. It handles security
at the Baltimore-Washington International Airport, as well as at four
new detention centers run by the Homeland Security Department where
foreigners await deportation.
In the straight-laced world of the security business, where most people
have a police or military background, Akal stands out. It is the only
security company that anyone in the business, including Akal's own
executives, can think of that is owned by a nonprofit religious organization.
"If we are in a room with 50 other contractors, you won't remember
the other guy, but you will remember us," said Mr. Khalsa, who
wears a white turban, has a long beard and refrains from cutting his
hair. See Hair.
It has also not hurt that Akal has been a generous campaign contributor
to both Democratic and Republican candidates at the federal level,
and that Mr. Khalsa has met with President Bush both in the White
House and in New Mexico. Local New Mexico politicians have also benefited
from this largess - and responded with friendship and support.
Four former New Mexico governors stopped by Yogi Bhajan's recent 75th-birthday
party; Governor Bill Richardson was last year's keynote speaker at
the group's International Peace Prayer Day.
"We play in the political arena like everyone else," Mr.
Khalsa said. He and his wife, Sat Nirmal Kaur Khalsa, who is Akal's
chief executive, have given more than $30,000 to both Democratic and
Republican federal candidates since 2000.
Mr. Khalsa, who was once known as Daniel Cohn, was given his name
by Yogi Bhajan after he moved here in 1971, soon after graduating
from Amherst College. Like other members of the 300-family Sikh Dharma
community, he has adopted the name Khalsa, which refers to a group
of orthodox Sikhs.
The Sikh Dharma community here blends New Age values and orthodox
Sikhism, a monotheistic religion that originated in the Punjab region
of the Indian subcontinent in the 15th century.
"We are not used to non-Punjabis joining our religion; it is
a curious development," said Gurinder Singh Mann, professor of
Sikh studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, who explained
that many of these new converts are more devout than those born into
Unlike their counterparts in India, women in Sikh Dharma wear turbans,
as do some of the children. Most members of the Sikh Dharma live in
modest houses near the compound and Yogi Bhajan's ranch in Espanola,
the Hacienda De Guru Ram Das Gurdwara.
Yogi Bhajan has arranged many marriages within the community.
Hacienda de Guru Ram Das, Espanola, NM
Akal's biggest security contract, worth $854 million, it provides
protection for federal courthouses and judges. While federal courthouse
guards wear United States marshals' uniforms in nine districts, their
employer is Akal, which hires mainly former police and military officers,
almost none of them Sikhs. Akal's contract with the guards prohibits
them from wearing turbans or having facial hair, unlike the company's
Sikh officials, who are required to do so by their religion.
For all the group's unusual ways, government officials have few complaints
about Akal. "Our people have done checks on them years ago and
we have no issues with them," said John Kraus, a contracting
officer for the Department of Justice. "Last I've checked, we've
had freedom of religion."
One high-profile contract Akal recently garnered, beating 20 other
companies, was for $250 million to provide security guards at five
Army bases and three weapons depots. The Army has turned to the private
sector to replace soldiers sent to Iraq.
Competition was based on ability, past performance and price, according
to an Army official, who added that Akal's religious ties were not
a factor, nor did Akal benefit as a religious group.
"We do not discriminate based on race, creed, religion or national
origin," the official said. "It was never really a factor."
Because of that open approach, Akal has almost exclusively gone after
"The federal government has created the fairest acquisition system
in the world," Mr. Khalsa said. He added that with the company's
low overhead - Mr. Khalsa, its top executive, earns a modest $90,000
- Akal is "very price-competitive" in the eyes of government
agencies on tight budgets.
Yet Ira A. Lipman, founder and chairman of Guardsmark, one of the
nation's largest security companies, is critical of the government's
low-price approach to protecting important installations.
"You have people working in highly sensitive government sites
and the government is working on a low-rate concept," Mr. Lipman
said. "This company has taken advantage of a low-rate mentality
in the government to assemble a lot of business. But let the buyer
beware and let the public focus on the people and their experience."
Akal is just one of several for-profit and nonprofit entities that
are part of a larger Sikh Dharma financial empire. These include Golden
Temple, a natural foods company that makes Yogi herbal teas, Soothing
Touch health and beauty products, Peace natural cereals, dietary supplements
and private-label products for Trader Joe's, the specialty food chain.
Its annual revenues exceed $60 million.
Akal and Golden Temple both operate under the loose umbrella of the
Khalsa International Industry and Trading Company, which also includes
Sun & Son, a computer software company.
The sole shareholder of all these companies is Sikh Dharma.
Equally important are a number of nonprofit ventures also owned by
Sikh Dharma. The biggest of these is the 3HO Foundation, with the
name standing for Healthy, Happy and Holy Organization. That group
is dedicated to the spread of Kundalini yoga, which is focused on
releasing inner energy, and of Yogi Bhajan's teachings. Other nonprofit
organizations have been set up to preserve Yogi Bhajan's archives
as well as to support a Sikh Dharma school in India, where many of
the group's children are sent.
"The whole point of all these ventures is not for an individual
to get rich, but to perpetuate the mission of the community,"
said Avtar Hari Singh Khalsa, who, as Arthur S. Warshaw, was once
president of Time-Life Television in Hollywood. Today he is chief
executive of the 3HO Foundation and other nonprofit's.
No money from Akal, Golden Temple or the other profit-making ventures
goes to the church, which is supported by donations, officials say.
Sending money to the church is barred by Akal's bankers and could
also jeopardize the tax-exempt status of the church. Akal pays no
dividends and plows all cash generated back into the business to support
its expansion, Daya Khalsa said.
Officials here say that no individual member of the Sikh Dharma community,
including Akal executives and Yogi Bhajan, has any equity in either
Akal, Golden Temple or any other profit-making businesses. Yogi Bhajan
has served as an unpaid Akal adviser and has been hired, occasionally,
as a paid consultant on Akal management issues.
Yogi Bhajan's guidance led to the founding of Akal. In 1980, Akal's
other co founder, Gurutej Khalsa, found that although he had graduated
from several law enforcement schools, his beard and turban prevented
him from getting a job. He turned to Yogi Bhajan for advice and was
told that if he started his own company, the police would begin to
work for him.
The Amar Infinity Foundation, based in Phoenix, is also tied in financially.
It has $100 million in assets, gained mainly through individual donations
and through such fund-raising events as the annual Yogiji Golf Classic
in Phoenix. Amar Infinity was set up to support the 3HO Foundation,
the Sikh Dharma and a long list of other nonprofit groups.
A final piece of the Sikh Dharma financial mosaic is the Siri Singh
Sahib Corporation, a nonprofit organization set up, according to its
state incorporation papers, to "administer and manage affairs
of Sikh religion."Yogi Bhajan is the sole officer and director.
Akal has developed a comfortable relationship with leaders of both
major political parties. In Daya Khalsa's office are numerous "grip
and grin" photos of him with various politicians, including President
Bush, former President Bill Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore.
Akal donates at the state level, too, giving $10,539 to Governor Richardson's
2002 election campaign and thousands more to the New Mexico Democratic
and Republican parties. Federal election records also show numerous
political contributions to both parties from various Khalsa's of Espanola,
in amounts ranging from several hundred to several thousand dollars,
along with $14,000 in contributions from Yogi Bhajan.
The group has built up trust at the federal level over a long period.
When questions were raised after Akal landed its first big contract
in 1986 to protect the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico, U.S.
Senator Jeff Bingaman, a Democrat from New Mexico, rose to Akal's
"People were saying, 'How could you let these foreign whomever's
take over a critical weapons testing site?'" Daya Khalsa recalled.
"And he said that we were friends and that we're good Americans
doing a good job."