Welcome to SPN

Register and Join the most happening forum of Sikh community & intellectuals from around the world.

Sign Up Now!

I'm Intrigued

Discussion in 'New to Sikhism' started by knowledge_seeker, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. knowledge_seeker

    knowledge_seeker
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    11
    So i am new to this website but i have been intrigued with the culture and religions of the world all my life even though i was raised a messianic jew in a very religiously strict family. I guess one could say i am young and doubting what has been drilled into my head from birth and am seeking what else could be out there. And recently in my search for questions and answers on god, religion, ways of living, etc etc... i found an article on wikipedia about the Sikh faith and was immediately drawn in with curiousity, so i futher started to search and found this website whch has already answered many questions i had but also created many new ones. so im just looking for alot of information about Sikhs and if i would be accepted by a Sikh community (the closest for me is in Denver) as a visitor, and maybe in the future a member.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    #1 knowledge_seeker, Oct 12, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 12, 2010
  2. Loading...

    Similar Threads Forum Date
    Feeling Like I'm Losing "it" Blogs Jul 8, 2016
    Great I'm cursed Blogs Oct 16, 2015
    I'm open-minded about romantic relationships... how do I explain to family? Love & Marriage Aug 22, 2015
    SALDEF My name is Waris, and I'm proud to be an American Sikh Organisations Jul 2, 2014
    Christianity Losing My Religion: Why I'm Raising My Child To Believe In Science, Not God Interfaith Dialogues May 21, 2013

  3. findingmyway

    findingmyway
    Expand Collapse
    Writer SPNer Contributor Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2010
    Messages:
    1,667
    Likes Received:
    3,767
    Visitors are always very welcome. We love to be able to teach people about ourselves as well as to learn about others to increase understanding and friendship :)

    The Darbar Sahib (Golden Temple), which is the most visited Gurdwara (closest English word is temple but the Gurdwara means more than a place of worship for us and is not so much for worship but more a place of learning) has 4 doors-1 on each side to signify that a Gurdwara is open to all regardless of caste, colour, creed etc.

    Member of the community? Absolutely!! But first begin walking along the path, everything else will come more easily

    welcomemundawelcomekaur
     
    • Like Like x 4
  4. knowledge_seeker

    knowledge_seeker
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    11
    The Darbar Sahib (Golden Temple), which is the most visited Gurdwara (closest English word is temple but the Gurdwara means more than a place of worship for us and is not so much for worship but more a place of learning) has 4 doors-1 on each side to signify that a Gurdwara is open to all regardless of caste, colour, creed etc.

    Im so glad to hear this news!! ive looked so long for a group of people that accepts everyone equally and is willing to give knowledge and recieve knowledge because to me knowledge is the greatest resource any person can have.
     
    • Like Like x 6
  5. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
    Expand Collapse
    1947-2014 (Archived)
    SPNer Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2004
    Messages:
    14,551
    Likes Received:
    19,200
    Welcome knowledge_seeker ji - The first step to knowledge of course is intrigue. It is great to find you as you found us. :)
     
    • Like Like x 4
  6. Ishna

    Ishna
    Expand Collapse
    On hiatus
    Writer SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,942
    Likes Received:
    5,002
    Hi Knowledge_Seeker, welcome to the board! cheeringkudi
    I think it's a special blessing to be drawn to Sikhi. There's lots of knowledge to be gathered so I hope you enjoy your stay!

    Ishna
     
    • Like Like x 5
  7. sdad

    sdad
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Messages:
    20
    Likes Received:
    24
    Hi Knowledge_Seeker,

    Welcome. It's really good to hear many of your questions are now answered. I am intrigued though, as you say “found this website which has already answered many questions i had but also created many new ones.”, please share these newly created questions with us.

    :happysingh:
     
    • Like Like x 5
    #6 sdad, Oct 12, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 10, 2015
  8. knowledge_seeker

    knowledge_seeker
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    11
    please do pardon me for the late reply i have been very busy with studying. but an example and these are just a few of the questions i have is things such as, when would be an appropriate time to visit a Gurdwara? would there be any language barriers when i do visit the Gurdwara? how would i go about covering my head when i visit (like in judaism we wear a Yarmulka. And when i visit would there be someone similar to a rabbi or priest that i could speak with?
     
  9. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
    Expand Collapse
    1947-2014 (Archived)
    SPNer Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2004
    Messages:
    14,551
    Likes Received:
    19,200
    knowledge seeker ji

    About a year or so ago, Narayanjot Kaur uploaded in the New to Sikhism section a number of threads for individuals needing an introduction to basics in Sikhism. Here is one to get you started. It is comprehensive, and based on materials from the blog of sukhmani Kaur at about.com.

    http://www.sikhphilosophy.net/new-to-sikhism/25846-gurdwara-what-to-expect-simple-overview.html

    I assume that you are a male. When you enter a gurdwara, very close to the entrance and before you reach Darbar Sahib where worship services take place, there will be a place where bright orange head scarves are kept for men who do not tie turbans. This will be next to a sink where you must wash your hands. You can also wear a hat - e.g., a Homberg that covers your entire head, much as I recall the Orthodox gentlemen of my childhood wearing of a Friday evening on their way to services. You may also ask someone in the gurdwara whether the yarmolke is sufficient head covering. Something tells me NO, but I am not an expert.

    Before you get involved in head scarves or hand-washing however find the shoe room, also very near to the entrance, and remove your shoes. Usually there are nice tidy shelves where they can be stored.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  10. Ishna

    Ishna
    Expand Collapse
    On hiatus
    Writer SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,942
    Likes Received:
    5,002
    I find the language barrier is negligible here in Australia as so many Punjabis can speak English and I imagine it's the same in other places.

    Finding the courage to open ones mouth and ask questions is the hard part! I find that if you approach people without sufficient English skills, they make a very good effort to help you by taking you to English speaking people or bringing someone to you.

    In my experience, people won't approach you in gurdwara sahib. You have to approach them. I think this might be a cultural thing? I've stood by the door looking nervous and had people ignore me (once someone closed the library door on me when I had a question!), but I don't think they're being rude necessarily, but they expect you to speak up if you need something, not be meek and just stand there. Once people know I have a voice I've never had a problem.

    Regardless, you can do just fine in Gurdwara without even speaking to anyone. Know the basics like cover your head, wash your hands before you go into Darbar Sahib (the hall where Guru Granth Sahib is), wear tidy clean clothes, and then just do what everyone else does. Stand when they stand, bow when they bow, go to langar when they go.

    You can be as involved or as withdrawn as you like has been my experience.

    It's easier the first time if you can get someone to show you the ropes and arrange to meet you when you arrive. If you can, call or email the Gurdwara and you'll find they're probably more than willing to welcome you in and show you around.

    Ishna
     
    • Like Like x 3
  11. findingmyway

    findingmyway
    Expand Collapse
    Writer SPNer Contributor Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2010
    Messages:
    1,667
    Likes Received:
    3,767
    I judge whether to approach people by whether they smile at me. If there is no smile then I won't approach as my experience is they don't welcome the intrusion!
     
  12. Ishna

    Ishna
    Expand Collapse
    On hiatus
    Writer SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,942
    Likes Received:
    5,002
    It's hard to smile when your nervous!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  13. findingmyway

    findingmyway
    Expand Collapse
    Writer SPNer Contributor Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2010
    Messages:
    1,667
    Likes Received:
    3,767
    True but there are many instances in our lives when we have to overcome nervousness and behave in a way not coming naturally to us. I have always tried to approach someone new as I know I appreciate it when someone welcomes me to a new place. So many times I have been ignored by the new person and they behave either uninterested or like they don't really want to be there. I know you going in the first place should be a sign that you want to be there but unfortunately if your body language is at odds it gives the wrong impression. So make the effort to smile and relax and the welcomes will flow kudihug
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Archived_Member16

    Archived_Member16
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,451
    Likes Received:
    3,761
    For your consideration to overcome nervousness & cultural barriers:

    "Smile! The Most Powerful Ice Breaker." :happykaur:

    Here’s an experiment to try. Smile, right now! How did that feel? Was it natural? For most people it is not. Which is a shame because smiles are a natural, and very effective, way to connect with people.

    Okay, another experiment. Smile at someone you normally wouldn’t, or a person you don’t know and see what happens. Did they smile back? More often than not, you’ll find that people naturally smile back in response to a smile they receive.

    Imagine the power this can have. . You’re at a social event, or even in the supermarket. You catch someone’s eye, and smile. Automatically, they smile back. It’s human nature. Then you have every excuse to say hello!

    Also, try smiling when you feel down. You’ll find that it is very difficult to stay down in the dumps with a smile on your face. It can be done, but it is all that more challenging to remain in your bad mood with a smile on your face.

    In "The Definitive book of body language" Alan and Barbara Pease explain that people have a hard-wired "mirroring" instinct. We mirror the expressions that we see on other people’s faces when we meet them. Because of the effects that smiles have on us this can have a very powerful effect on your everyday interactions. Studies have shown that when you smile during an encounter with someone else, your encounter will run more smoothly and be likely to have a more positive outcome.

    So take the smile challenge and smile at one more person than you normally would. Because of the mirroring you will be actively bringing happiness into the world. During these difficult times that can be a wonderful thing!

    You will not only be bringing people happiness but positioning yourself for success. There are very few things that do not rely on interactions with others for their success. By smiling at someone before you ask a favor, even if it is only to ring up a total on a cash register, you are smoothing the process along. You are giving respect to the other person by acknowledging them. And I think that you will find that you will start to feel happier as well!

    - rec'd from a friend
     
    • Like Like x 2
  15. Astroboy

    Astroboy Malaysia
    Expand Collapse
    ਨਾਮ ਤੇਰੇ ਕੀ ਜੋਤਿ ਲਗਾਈ (Previously namjap)
    Writer SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2007
    Messages:
    4,578
    Likes Received:
    1,606
    spnadmin Ji,

    I wonder what happened to Narayanjot Kaur ?
    :happysingh:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Archived_Member16

    Archived_Member16
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,451
    Likes Received:
    3,761
    Respected namjap Ji:

    The energy vibrations & the spirit of Narayanjot Kaur Ji still lurks around SPN ! Visualize, focus & connect to that "unseen" apparition ! lol
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. Tejwant Singh

    Tejwant Singh United States
    Expand Collapse
    Mentor Writer SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2004
    Messages:
    4,559
    Likes Received:
    6,988
    Narayanjot ji,

    Guru fateh.

    We miss you. Please come and share your positive energy, wisdom, enthusiasm and your deep desire to learn & teach with us. We need you here.:)
     
    • Like Like x 3
  18. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
    Expand Collapse
    1947-2014 (Archived)
    SPNer Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2004
    Messages:
    14,551
    Likes Received:
    19,200
    Narayanjot posted last night if I am not mistaken.
     
  19. Ishna

    Ishna
    Expand Collapse
    On hiatus
    Writer SPNer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,942
    Likes Received:
    5,002
    Whoa, at first glance I read that as she PASSED last night!!

    Now to extract my heart from my mouth...
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. gs_chana

    gs_chana
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2005
    Messages:
    30
    Likes Received:
    22
    Hello to you knowledge_seeker (these forums tend to have a somewhat impersonal edge to them with names; well mine is Gurdeep).

    First and foremost you are trying to achieve an understanding of Sikhi by interacting with it's members. This is a good way. The Gurdwara is not a place of worship; no idols, no priests, no status, no rituals. Simply bow your head and enjoy the good vibes of Kirtan [spiritual music].

    I would recommend assimlating more knowledge of what Sikhi is about by reading the Guru Granth. This is your ONLY way.

    I understand you are of Jewish background. Sikhi is a way of life which we believe is universal. A man of any faith, background, etc can use the Guru's way to achieve the ultimate Aim of Life.

    We Sikhs believe in essence all people of the world are Sikhs as we are all seeking God. We don't believe we are a religion, we adopt a discipline of direct contact with God. Hence why our so called religious institutions are run in a somewhat different way to religious places of worship.

    Lets discuss further any other questions you may have. Perhaps in time all our other brothers and sisters here can join in and truly create a good conversation about God [i.e. do not get engrossed in fine details of "how to be a Sikh"...more like be a Sikh!]

    Regards.
     
    • Like Like x 6
  21. celtic

    celtic
    Expand Collapse
    SPNer

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    20
    Gurdeep, I realise I am replying to a topic that is now a few months old, but may I say: you have truly said something deep and powerful here. I—and many others, I am sure—really appreciate it :)
     
    • Like Like x 3

Share This Page