Hari Jiwan Singh Khalsa
Hari Jiwan Singh Khalsa
Khalsa at Governor's Prayer Breakfast in 2012
|Children||Hari-Amrit and Sarab Shakti (daughters)|
Khalsa (born Stephen Oxenhandler) was born September 29, 1942 in St. Louis, Missouri, to a well-to-do real estate development family. He was raised in a reformed Jewish community with whom he spent his youth between St. Louis and Palm Springs, California.
Khalsa attended the University of Oklahoma Business School and Washington University Law School before entering the family business. In the early 1970s he started practicing Kundalini yoga. When asked what yoga did for him, he answered: "Yoga gave me the experience of spirituality before my time and without years of spiritual practice. Once having experienced it, I wanted to live there rather than just visit."[This quote needs a citation] Thus, began his conversion to the Sikh faith 40 years ago. Explaining his attraction to Sikhism, Khalsa said, "First, my teacher and spiritual master Yogi Bhajan was a Sikh and he's the one who afforded me the way to this experience. Secondly, and most importantly, after studying many religions and teachings, Sikhism was inclusive rather than exclusive. It acknowledges the truth of all religions but still has a discipline of its own. Sikhs believe it's great to be a Christian, a Jew or a Hindu; just be a good one. For, if you can't see God in all, you can't see God at all."[This quote needs a citation]
For the last 30 years Khalsa has worked with Yogi Bhajan, serving as Chief of Protocol for Sikh Dharma.
Khalsa has served on the Interreligious Council of Los Angeles for many years. He is a member of the World Affairs Council and the Committee for Better Government Cooperation with Religions. He has lectured and taught throughout the United States, Europe and Latin America. In recent years, as Yogi Bhajan's health didn't permitted him to travel, Khalsa has served in his place representing him across the country.
In connection with one enterprise, Sweet Song Corporation, Khalsa and his associates were sued by the FTC for falsely representing the value of gemstone investments, and were subsequently barred from engaging in any business related to collectibles investments. From the 1970s and into the 1990s, Khalsa owned a large toner telemarketing operation which funneled money into Yogi Bhajans' various corporations.
Khalsa was made a Mukia Singh Sahib early in his career with Yogi Bhajan. In the Sikh Dharma religion in the west, a Mukia Singh Sahib is the highest title other than the Siri Singh Sahib, which is the title of Yogi Bhajan. Khalsa said, "To be honest, I really didn't know what the title meant or how I should represent it when it was first bestowed. But, that's how Yogi Bhajan worked. He expected me to continue growing until I realized that I would never fully understand what this title meant because, if I did, I would never be worthy. I have come to understand that this title, this blessing, I've been bestowed is to live, think, and represent Sikh Dharma as our Guru commands. Naturally, it's a never ending duty."[This quote needs a citation]
Khalsa was also bestowed the title of "Chief of Protocol" of Sikh Dharma in 1976. "Again," Khalsa states, "My idea of what this title entailed was in great variance with what I've come to know today. Yes, I entertained dignitaries, guests, whoever Yogi Bhajan requested, but the real value in this title lies not in what duty it requires, but, rather, in how I saw myself. I was no longer a fraternity guy from the Midwest; I now presented a view of who we were to all I hosted. Naturally, this necessitates continually changing to become better and better in this duty. I have been blessed with many opportunities."[This quote needs a citation]
Khalsa currently lives in Espanola, New Mexico, the home of Sikh Dharma in the West. He is married to Sat Bachan Kaur Khalsa for 35 years. Mrs. Khalsa is from Toronto, Canada. They have two children. Hari-Amrit Kaur Khalsa is an attorney in Albuquerque. Sarab Shakti Kaur Khalsa is the assistant vegan chef at Apple Computer in San Jose, California.
Khalsa has written articles for several publications on the topic of gemstones.
Khalsa was featured in the book Fathers and Daughters: In Their Own Words.
- "FTC v. Sweet Song Corporation". Retrieved 7 March 2012.
- "3HO Foundation eNewsletter". 3ho.org. 1996-02-19. Archived from the original on 2013-02-23. Retrieved 2012-03-06.
- Meyer, Nancy (March 1984). "Meet the Sikhs". Los Angeles Magazine: 174–180.
- "Jivan Jewelry homepage". Retrieved 7 March 2012.
- "Nine Treasures: About us". Retrieved 7 March 2012.
- "Last Defendant Named in a Gemstone Telemarketing Case Banned from Telemarketing Activities" (Press release). Federal Trade Commission. 1 February 2000. Archived from the original on 21 October 2011.
- Khalsa, Hari Jiwan Singh. "Gems and Prosperity." Aquarian Times Autumn 2001: 60-62.
- Cook, Mariana Ruth (1994). Fathers and Daughters: In Their Own Words. Chronicle.