Harijot Singh Ji and Guvinder Singh Ji of SikhNet talk SikhNet Stories

How do we connect and communicate our foundations, history and philosophy to the next generations?...

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Harijot Singh Ji (Stories Manager for SikhNet Stories) 

When did you start with Sikhnet? 

I started with Sikhnet in 2008 

What attracted you to Sikh stories? 

I've always been brought up in a spiritual community. I've always clung to stories, It was always a huge part of my personality; to understand Sikh history and philosophy through stories.

Now I can see the effect that stories have on children, their behavior changes, they remember the stories, even memorize them by word, it goes into their souls. Anyone in a position to do this kind of work spread the word in this way; it's a service to the world. 

What has been your journey with SikhNet over the years? 

For a period I only worked in the News section as the News Manager, in the Marketing section in charge of Social Media, and in 2017 I was the first person to start working remotely in the Sikhnet team which has now become a commonplace thing post pandemic. 

What did you know of SikhNet before you started working with them? 

I knew of it as the first Sikh website. My twin brother had been working there for some time and they were starting to digitize cassette stories. They needed someone to create more stories then the original 2 dozen. And that was in 2008. I've worked with SikhNet since then. 

What is your typical day or how is your process in developing stories for SikhNet? 

There isn't exactly a typical day, each day can be quite different, depending on what part of the process I am working on. It can be spent largely on coordinating between the different contributors such as research, animators or voice volunteers. Or it can be involved in the writing process like reading different versions of history, coming up with a narrative that seems to fit best, re-formatting it in more colloquial and understandable language etc. I generally try to load the story with voices rather than narration in order for it to be more immersive. Obviously a major task I have is the actual audio mixing; finding suitable background music, cleaning up all the various recording, splicing them all together, adding sound effects, pacing the characters speech to suit the mood so it could be slower or faster depending.  

This month is SikhNet Stories you are doing ‘ The Greatest Superpower with HarKrisan Sahib Ji’  What do you think is your superpower?
I guess my superpower is to hear and listen to a story in more than one way. I can see that they work on multiple levels so it's a matter of listening in a way that allows me to bring something that is healthy and good for families, and enhances the family environment. 

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Guvinder Singh Ji (Stories Researcher at SikhNet Stories)

When did you start with Sikhnet and what attracted you to Sikh stories? 

I came to work at Sikhnet  this year after being a fan of the children’s stories for years! - I began to volunteer my time to help ensure that the stories were historically accurate, slowly this hobby turned into a passionate endeavour to want to expand the department, so as to cater for a way to bring narrative to youth and adults alike.

What has been your journey with SikhNet over the years? 

My journey with Sikhnet is developing rapidly, I have very quickly got stuck in and am becoming a part of the team. I love how as a team we work together to ensure that each aspect of our vision for the website and its resources are heard. Currently I am working on developing the stories department by translating rare historical texts like the “Suraj Prakash”, “Panth Prakash” and “Janam Sakhis” to provide a more historically accurate range of stories - both audio and visual for Children, youth and Adults.

This month in SikhNet Stories you are doing ‘ The Greatest Superpower with HarKrisan Sahib Ji’  What do you think is your superpower?

I would say that my super power has to be my thirst for learning and its compassionate application. Research, learning and teaching have no worth if they are not shared in compassion for the upliftment of others. As a great teacher once taught, we must “Be the light...Be the lighthouse”.  Working with Sikh history and turning important episodes in the history of my people into condensed stories for a wide range of audiences is a challenging role, that forces me to apply a critical mind as well as understand the implications of its application - especially considering how each story or retelling of historical narrative will have an effect ion the community on both a macro and micro level. When I was a young child the stories acted as a anchor and a beacon for me. They provided a foundation for my growth and also sign posted me towards how I could deal with situation in my day to day life. I look to continue to pull on stories that can be a source of courage, peace and comfort to the listeners, who seek powerful direction in their lives, bringing them closer to their own relationship with the Guru.

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