This month, Sikhs celebrated the appointment of Guru Hargobind as the sixth Guru of the Sikhs in 1606, following the execution of the preceding Guru, Guru Arjun, by the Mughal emperor Jehangir for refusing to convert to Islam. Born to a prophecy that he would crush tyranny, Guru Hargobind represented a metamorphosis for the Sikh people — manifesting more than just spiritual practice but worldly practice as well. The commemoration of his ascension as Guru is a timely coincidence, for […]
The Sikh prayer called Ardaas (link) is an address before the All-Pervasive Immortal that is offered regularly by Sikhs in congregation. It concludes every service and is often offered ahead of an undertaking of a task by Sikhs to seek the Divine’s blessings and protection. The prayer is a defined set of verses that recounts Sikh history: the Gurus, those who sacrificed themselves, and custom verse at the end by the congregation specific to the context of the occasion. The Ardaas […]
“A true revolution of values will soon cause us to question the fairness and justice of many of our past and present policies. On the one hand we are called to play the Good Samaritan on life’s roadside, but that will be only an initial act. One day we must come to see that the whole Jericho Road must be transformed so that men and women will not be constantly beaten and robbed as they make their journey on life’s […]
Wednesday night’s special election result in Alabama was a clear revelation on several fronts, particularly when the exit polls were analyzed that demonstrated the constituency of support garnered by the two candidates, Republican Roy Moore — the ostensible and rebellious conservative Christian plagued with accusations around pedophilia and improper conduct with women and girls — and the victorious Democrat Doug Jones, considered an underdog candidate for a state that hadn’t elected a Democrat for Senator in decades. The exit polling […]
Over his two terms, President Obama has recognized the Sikh community (and seems comfortable in doing so) perhaps more than any other US president in history. In his recent speech at the Islamic Society of Baltimore, he makes reference to the Sikh American community as victims of anti-Islamic bigotry in the United States. However, it was lacking in specific proposals to help counter America’s Islamophobia.
While in 2012, the Republican Party offered sympathy and support to the Sikh American community, by 2016, this sentiment has ostensibly been disregarded — and even reversed — by the dominating Republican candidate for President who openly disparages a Sikh article of faith. And, there has been little tangible response from the Republican Party or the other Republican candidates to this incident or other similar protests. One wonders how or why this shift occurred.
Categories: Civil Rights, Hate Crimes, News Bits, Politics • Tags: Arashdeep Singh, Donald Trump, Iowa, Ishwar Singh, Muscatine, Nikki Haley, Oak Creek, Republican National Convention, Republican Party, Sikh Temple of Wisconsin, xenophobia
In its 2015 Annual Report on International Religious Freedom, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) continued to express concern about the state of religious freedom in India, particularly after the election of current Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Placing India in its “Tier 2” category (which the USCIRF defines as “countries where the violations engaged in or tolerated by the government are serious and are characterized by at least one of the elements of the ‘systematic, ongoing, and […]
While he didn’t visit the Sikh faith’s holiest site during his trip to India two weeks ago, President Obama did create a bit of a stir as he openly advocated for religious freedom and peaceful coexistence of faiths in India, citing in his speech the mass murder of Sikhs in Oak Creek, Wisconsin in 2012: Obama said no society is immune from man’s darkest impulses, as he raised the 2012 shooting at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin that killed six […]
On his state visit to India this week, President Barack Obama is not scheduled to make a visit to Harmandir Sahib (aka the Golden Temple), barring any unexpected developments. As he partakes in India’s Republic Day festivities in India’s capital, his itinerary seems to be focused on solidifying the business/political relationship between the US and India. As reported in the Washington Post: Officials said Obama and Modi are expected to conduct talks around the business climate, trade, climate change, Afghanistan and terrorism. […]