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Found 10 results

  1. What's the reason that we have not been able to cultivate an original culture based on Sikh values, yet have continued to propagate Punjabi culture which is a hodge-podge of foreign culture given an identity by the Mughal Jehangir? Why have we not developed any meaningful or impactful pieces of art that reflect Sikh values? Why have Sikhs made no innovation or strides in science or business? What are we lacking or missing that prevents our community to have intellectuals?
  2. TheeTurbanator

    Vaisakh: Sikhi vs Punjabism

    Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh! A Basic Rundown of Vaisakhi Vaisakhi is a dharmic, and cultural festival which is celebrated on the 13th or 14th of April every year. For Sikhs, it commemorates the formation of Khalsa Panth, for Punjabi's it marks the beginning of the harvest season. The celebration of Vaisakhi predates Sikhi itself, however after the formalization of the Khalsa in 1699 it was mainly celebrated as a religious event for Sikhs. A lot of people might not realize this, but Guru Nanak Dev Ji was also born on Vaisakhi 1469 (Wikipedia is wrong), the same day Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the 10th Human form of Nanak, decided to lay down the formalization for the Khalsa Panth. This fact is often forgotten, but it amplifies the importance of Vaisakhi for Sikhs, as not just a celebration for the creation of the Khalsa, but also the day Guru Nanak Dev Ji was born. The Truth about Vaisakhi Vaisakhi used to be a Punjabi new years harvest festival, and was transformed by Guru Gobind Singh Ji to celebrate the creation of the Khalsa, but modern day Vaisakhi has mostly devolved from a celebration of the Khalsa back into a Punjabi festival. Vaisakhi for Sikhs isnt about Bhangra dancing, colorful cloths, or free food, it's about celebrating the creation of the Khalsa Panth. When I ask non-sikhs, and even some sikhs about Vaisakhi, they seem to be clueless as to why we celebrate it in the first place, and instead make it about free food or socializing with friends. We attend all these Nagar Kirtan parades and we eat food and meet friends, but at the end of the day we dont end up learning anything about Sikhi. Sadly, Vaisakhi also gets hijacked by corporations trying to promote their business, and Politicians trying to promote their party. This is bad becuase their are taking advantage of such an important occasion, however isn't that bad becuase these corporations and politicians also contribute a lot of funds to organizing Vaisakhi, help spread awareness, and participate in it themselves to attract even more people. I think we should find a way to limit them, if not cut them out completely. We are not responsible for promoting another culture at a Sikh event, especially when they are using Gurdwara money, on Gurdwara property, under the name of a Sikh event. Punjabi culture itself is often times anti Sikh as it promotes alcohol, sexism, caste system, etc. If we allow any of it, then we risk mixing it and passing it off as Sikhi to the rest of the world. This will create a lot of problems becuase people will be fed misinformation that will be the direct result of Sikhi being watered down by Punjabi culture. Now before you get triggered and start calling me a radical, fundamentalist, zealot, extremist or any of the buzzwords people like to use, just keep in mind that I am a freedom of speech and expression advocate, and I dont feel like we should outright ban Bhangra, Punjabi Music, or food. I definitely feel like their are a lot of people who come to Vaisakhi just for the food, music, dancing, etc, and to ban the aforementioned practices would cut off a lot of people who could be potentially educated on Sikhi. Instead of having a complete blanket Ban like some Sikhs propose, I think that we should try to somehow limit the Punjabi culture and push back hard and find a way to bring the focus on Vaisakhi back to Sikhi instead of Punjabi culture. Typical Punjabi "Counterarguments" When I bring up the issue of the Punjabiization of Vaisakhi, I often times hear the same pathetic counterarguments from Punjabis who try to defend the Punjabification of Vaisakhi. I will now address some of these common "counterarguments" that Punjabis bring up in defense of the current state of Vaisakhi. One common argument Punjabis like to bring up is "oh but most people who attend Vaisakhi are already Sikh, why do you have to promote relgion so much?", that might be true, but keep in mind that most people are only Sikh in name, and when confronted, they know very little about Sikhi, or just know misinformation. When I personally do parchaar and hand out the "3 Facts about Sikhi" leaflets at Vaisakhi, a lot of Punjabi "Sikhs" reject my lefts saying something along the lines of "were already Sikh,we know about Sikh-ism, just focus on the white people, not us", however when I ask them to explain the basic principles they fail miserably and then finally bend the knee and accept the leaflet. Another common argument is "oh but Vaisakhi existed before Sikhi, and was celebrated by farmers as a new year's/harvest festival, you can't just hijack it", it's true that Vaisakhi and was celebrated as a new year's/harvest festival prior to Sikhi, however Sikhs celebrate it becuase of the creation of the Khalsa, and that is what really popularized Vaisakhi, and is what it's known for today. How many people, especially Sikhs in the west, honestly celebrate Vaisakhi as a harvest festival? Most of us aren't even farmers, without Sikhi, Vaisakhi would be all but irrelevant in the modern age. If someone wants to celebrate Vaisakhi as a harvest festival, then they are free to do so and we aren't stopping them, however we as Sikhs must remember that we celebrate Vaisakhi as the creation of the Khalsa. Make Vaisakhi Great Again At the moment Vaisakhi is nothing more than a Punjabi festival with a Sikhi twist, we need to reverse that. I propose that we start by increasing all efforts to do parchar and educate the community on Sikhi. Vaisakhi attracts hundreds of thousands of people, all of whom have the potential to be educated. This is a golden opportunity that only comes once a year, and we as a Panth need to capitalize on it if we are to grow Sikhi. What better place and time to spread Sikhi than at a Nagar Kirtan during Vaisakhi time. It honestly says a lot about the Sikh community when very few "Sikhs" are educated on it, and even fewer are fully committed to the faith. I feel like we need to really focus on our community, and not sideline them in favor of non-sikhs, becuase at the end of the day these are the people who identify as Sikh and still practice some form of Sikhi, even tho it is a watered down, and heavily Punjabiized version. Punjabi culture is like a double edged sword, it promotes anti-sikh practices, however it also promotes pride & bravery to defend ones way of life. When things get serious, Punjabi's are often the first one to go fight on the frontlines. During 1984 many non Amritdhari Punjabis, who were otherwise never religious and would never wake up for Amritvela, joined the fight and died fighting in defense of Harmandir Sahib. The thing about Punjabi's is that they are always ready to die for the Panth, but aren't willing to live for the Panth. I feel like Punjabis have a place in the Sikh community becuase without them we wouldn't get very far. We need to take the good things about Punjabi culture and leave the bad, this is why I dont feel like Punjabis are a lost cause and are worth doing Parchaar to. What I propose is that we drastically increase our education efforts. This can be done in the form of educational events, school programs, university courses, and most importantly: street parchaar. We must also compare and contrast between Sikhi and Punjabism in order to separate them, and demonstrate Sikhi's obvious superiority. Instead of a straight up ban, I would suggest we specifically stop Music that contains anti Sikh themes that promote drugs, alcohol, degrading women, etc at Sikh associated events and Gurdwaras. If someone wants to go around blasting anti Sikh music then by all means go ahead, but not at a Sikh event. As for bhangra, although it does not represent Sikhi, if someone wants to dance to celebrate the creation of the Khalsa then I think it's fine. If we follow through with the aforementioned strategies, we can still keep the Punjabis happy, all while promoting Sikhi! My Question for the Community What would you improve or change for Vaisakhi to make it focus more on sikhi, rather than Punjabi culture? Please leave your suggestions down below. Resources Informative Leaflets RajoanaTV Exposing the Culturalization of Vaisakhi Nanak Naam on why Sikhs celebrate Vaisakhi, & its significance Basics of Sikhi on The Unique Khalsa Panth! Vaisakhi Katha
  3. Guest

    Mr

    Hello, I am currently working on a thesis project for my final year in my architecture course which involves researching a specific character in relation to the Tay River, in this case it is Duleep Singh, who is very much a character who has adopted both his traditional values and those he developed during his stay in the United Kingdom, and more specifically, Scotland. The term "hybrid identity" comes to mind, and I a very much interested in learning more about the Sikh community in Scotland. Are there any rituals, practices, or outlooks you may have that may perhaps contrast or differ from those of Sikhs in other parts of the world? What are some of the issues (if any) of practicing Sikhism in Scotland? What are your thought on Maharaja Duleep Singh? I hope I have asked my questions as sensitively as possible, I hope nothing I have asked or stated has come off as offensive as that is the last of my intentions.
  4. Dear Fellow Members, I want to discuss the growing matter of casteism in Sikhism, As far as I am aware when our Guru ji created/started panth khalsa. He abolished all the evil roots of casteism in Sikh culture and he created a guideline that a sikh should be identified and known as a sikh . And there should be no place of caste system in SIkh culture. But look at us today, we are so lost in casteism itself that we are known as Jat sikhs or Khatri sikhs or ramgharia and so on (No offense to anyone) Even though we have dedicated gurudwaras to the different community here. I dont mean to harm anyone emotions here. Please pardon me if I have. But what do you all think as a sikh. Is it correct to give uprise to casteism itself in our culture which guru ji abolished. Please give me your views. And Another thing is that this issue is being promoted in regards to the marriages as well. I am a Sikh for all I know, But where ever I or my parents speak about the matrimony. The first question which is being asked is what caste do you belong to. I mean how does it matters ? If I am a jat or khatri or ramgharia, we all are sikhs and thats what should be imp. But for about 80% it matters a lot. I dont know what difference does it makes but Jatts only wanna marry in their same caste and so as ramgharias. How does it matters that if a person is a wierdo and do all sort of crazy stuff like drugs and do all kind of thngs but while marrying their daughter to him wont be an issue, only bcoz he is of their same caste. And on the other hand there is a guy like me who is educated, decent, religious person but nope, they wont marry their daughter with him only bcoz I do not belong to their caste. I have had enough of this caste system. And then there is another issue which is only because I wear a turban and don't trim my beard, most of the girls wont go for a guy like me bcoz of this reason. Its such a shamefull thing to say that people who are taking care of our Gurudwara have started registering for matrimonial alliance and they have put an option where a girl has to opt that does she needs a turbaned sikh or a clean shaven. If the gurudwara will support these actions then who is gonna stand with the gursikhs ? I mean this is the limits where these people can go. What kind of Sikh is a Clean shaven, A clean shaven person is not a sikh. He has lost the main identity of being a sikh. I have seen a lot of people who are going thru these difficulties and because of these things boys are cutting down there kesh and going out of sikhi. Please let me know your views on this. And again please if I have hurted any ones emotions, knowingly or unknowingly. Please accept my apologies.
  5. Hi it would be a great help if I could get some response in regards to these questions. I'm writing my Dissertation paper on the turban. 1. what does the turban represent for you personally? 2. How does the pagh determine your personality? (if it doesn't why?) 3. How does it construct your physical appearance? (by wearing a pagh how do you perceive yourself and how do others look at you) 4. whats the style of your pagh? (the way its tied, the style, the colour significance) and why? 5. Is it a cultural and or religious purpose and why? 6. Is there any gender distinctions(differences) in wearing and tieing a pagh? (For example through my observations I noted most men wear a pagh [not necessarily religious] whereas women only wear it for religious reasons, and they mostly cover the pagh with a chunni where as men do not.) What is your take on this difference? All responses and opinions are non judgemental. I would like genuine opinions rather than a definition or generalisations. So feel free to be expressive! :D
  6. Guest

    Culture Dictating Sikhi

    Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ke Fateh. Sangat Jeeo I need some solid advice. I am the first Amritdhari within a household of clean shaven Sikhs who are not practising. When I was mona, myself and a Jamaican girl were both looking into Sikhi and found Waheguru from scriptures, shabads, rehat, kakaar. We took Amrit at the same sanchaar, and over time realised that spiritually we are compatible through our love for Waheguru. We enhance each others rehat, keep strict Sikh views and try to better each other. The only problem is that my family are typical Punjabis. My mum says "I had so many dreams of you having a nice, indian wife." I try explaining that Guroos Sikhi is universal, humans are humans, she is a Gursikh so that should be the only criteria, however she has told everyone who are all against this thought. They stereotype and say well you know how rough black people are, even though I have explained the Singhnis nature... I am now stuck. I keep thinking of this situation and find that it will probably be the same situation in many households, we still live in fear of what family will think or what relatives will say. My mum now openly acts rudely towards my friend and looks down on her for the colour of her skin. Before discussing a rishta, I feel like my family will only frown on her all our life and why should she be degraded and thought badly of when she is also the daughter of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaaj. One part of me feels a duty to my Sikhi to not let these old fashioned anti Gurmat traditions rule the opinions. I just think that we have come on a Spiritual Journey towards Maharaaj and would like to embrace him, but this Kalyug still dictates Sikhi. Gursikho, opinions please. Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ke Fateh
  7. I really want to know, be honest in other forum some Punjabi girls and Muslims call us the worst things women could be call. thank you
  8. Guest

    Help For A Writer

    Hello everyone, I'm a writer looking for some help on Sikh names for a forthcoming short story. This forum looks like a friendly place with lots of helpful people, so I thought it'd be a good place to post my question! My story is a science fiction tale set in the far future, and a lot of the characters in it are descendants of Sikh heritage. The hero of my story is a scholar of ancient texts - both holy and historical - and the people of his city come to him for help when no-one else will help them. I need a name that kind of sums up his character. He's learned and quick-thinking. He's not brave like a warrior, but his curiosity to learn more about the unknown, and his devout faith, mean that he does things that others perceive as very brave indeed. Imagine him almost like a Sikh Sherlock Holmes - always thinking, always alert and always ready to use his wits to battle evil and corruption. Any suggestions for a good name for him? Either first name or surname. Thanks in advance, Mark PS. As this is a religious forum, I would like to point out that I have the greatest respect for all world religions, and the story will not portray any religion or religious group in a poor light. It's purely a work of fantasy.
  9. Cultures that endorse modesty and cultures that endorse hypersexualization are the *same* thing. Both define female sexuality by how it relates to the male gaze. In both cases the female body exists as an ornament either to be kept carefully hidden or put on display. Neither is empowering for women.
  10. I dont know if anyone has noticed but a lot of the time i see a lot of young sikhs taking on some parts of the glorified gangster culture. This is from the way they dress with low jeans and the latest Yeezy 2 trainers to the way they drive s low down in there cars. But easily the most annoying is the way they speak and type "innit", "wagwan", "gwarnin". Even on this forum you see people giving advice using slang language I myself sometimes easily fall into the trap. But surely we should do something to combat this problem makes us look like a joke.
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