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Is it wrong for a Sikh to marry someone with a different religion?

Discussion in 'Sikh Youth' started by missnice91, Apr 27, 2013.

  1. missnice91

    missnice91
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    Hi,

    I am 21 years old and born in the UK.
    I am Sikh and I respect my religion but I do not know a lot about my religion...
    My family don't really teach me everything so I get confused.
    I wanted to ask about marriage....

    Does Sikhism say that Sikhs can only marry the same religion?
    Is it against the faith to marry a different religion but keep your own religion??
    I understand that it's keeping our faith alive and respecting out long lived religion. Respecting the Guru's... I still have a lot to learn but I am Sikh..


    If Sikhism says that Sikhs are not allowed to marry to someone with a different religion can someone please explain to me why?? As long as you eaCh respect each other's cultures, is that not ok?? I don't mind but I feel so trapped sometimes with family expectations. I just want to find a guy who will protect me, look after me and likes me for who I am. With being born in the UK, I cannot be too picky.

    Please give me advice.
     
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  3. itsmaneet

    itsmaneet
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    // Satsriakal //

    Guru Gobind Ji Maharaj in his 52 Bachans to Sikhs clearly mentioned not to give ur daughters to a non-Sikh. These 52 Bachans are embossed / framed very well at Shri Hazur Sahib, Nanded - India.

    Gurfateh !

    [​IMG]
     
  4. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    itsmaneet ji

    Let me interject here. Do you mean 52 bachans or 52 hukams? if you mean 52 hukams of Guru Gobind Singh, they are fake. If you mean 52 bachans not hukams, this is the first I ever heard of Dasam Pita indulging in bachans which is the musical province of a different religion and a different topic.

    The Sikh Rehat Maryada says that a Sikh should marry a Sikh. However, this world has become a more complicated place since the rehat was written and endorsed by the panth worldwide (not one sangat in Hazoor Sahib).

    Let's reboot the discussion.

    missnice ji - Have you taken a look at the other threads on Sikh/Muslim and Sikh/Hindu marriage discussions? Please do because we have too many different threads on this issue and a lot of duplication. I may merge your thread with one of the others later.
     
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    #3 spnadmin, Apr 27, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2013
  5. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    You cannot respect something you know nothing about, you end up respecting for the sake of respecting, and with no knowledge of what is worthy of respect and what is not.

    understandable, but a common background many of us here share

    Sikhism says that two people who wish to have anand Karaj must be both Sikhs, (also, the Pope is catholic, and bears do defacate in the woods), I dont mean to sound harsh here, but this is common sense, not rules. If you are an Amritdhari Sikh, then marrying a Muslim or a Jew probably is not the brightest idea in the book. If however, you are searching like the rest of us, then the world is your oyster!

    Again, common sense dictates that if you have a spiritual connection with the Creator, it probably makes sense to share your life with someone who has a similar connection. In Sikhism, marriage is a three way connection, but obviously it is not going to work as well if one of you is an Atheist.

    Good for you! I never tire of saying that to people, 'I am a Sikh!' , well my wife is not a Sikh, but her thinking and way she lives is more Sikh than mine, so that works, also, I am not Amritdhari, If I were, I think that would change the dynamics ever so slightly.

    Because marriage, having the potential of being a three way spiritual connection, between husband, wife and Creator, can only work in this fashion if the adherent is constant, ie, the same, if you are Sikh, and your husband is say Christian, well, I can think of at least one couple here where it may have worked socially, but did not work spiritually, and that is the point of a spiritual marriage. If you are talking about a normal marriage, ie, like the one I have, I don't think it matters as much.

    The questions you are asking have little or nothing to do with spirituality, you are asking why your family dictates to you whom you should marry, possibly sounds more like a caste issue, these are more problems to do with family tradition, pride, izzat, etc etc. These are not Sikh problems, these are cultural problems.

    People are very quick to jump on the 'we are Sikhs, we must do this' bandwagon when it suits them, even if they happen to know next to nothing about the religion.

    My advice to you would be to see if you can find someone suitable using this method, as it keeps everyone happy, and you may find your Prince Charming, however, if it does not work, keep looking, follow your instincts, follow your gut feeling, in fact, if you feel you are two young, or wish to study, or make a life, now is the time to give the matter serious thought and set out to yourself what your ideal plan is for you, not for your family, or for its izzat, but for you, and then decide how it fits in with what your family has planned for you

    Good Luck
     
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  6. missnice91

    missnice91
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    Ok, I was unsure of where to post my thread. Thanks
     
  7. missnice91

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    Thanks for the replies so far...

    I have not read the Guru granth Sahib so I don't think I can make any firm religious opinion because I don't know enough. I have always had a a spiritual connection with God

    I didn't really think I needed a partner to increase the spiritual connection. I think each individual finds his own connections with God...I was born in England so I do have a modern thinking sometimes. I strongly believe in equality which is why I find it hard to understand inter faith marriage only. I personally think that it is possible for a inter-faith marriage to work as long as each other accepts each others religion and share similar beliefs. Is anand Karaj only for 2 Sikhs marrying each other? Would the Gurdwara allow it for a Sikh and non-Sikh but where the non-sikh accepts his wifes religion and respects her beliefs and allows their children to follow the Sikhism faith also? What is the reason.. Any religious quotes or anyone can direct me to scriptures that talk about marriage and sikhism. Not just vows because vows are similar in all religions....


    Is it simply a religious rule in Sikhism because it's the best thing to help us grow as Sikhs? I think some Sikhs get married but don't know the true meaning of the Anand Karaj is that wrong? Do people read it before getting married to understand what it says in the vows? My punjabi is not that good so I would not fully understand it :/.

    If someone has a greater religious insight into this matter and can explain to me why a Sikh woman Should marry a Sikh man, I would be grateful to know.
     
  8. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    missnice ji

    Please look to the section just above the thread discussion, and you will see a section called "Related Topics." There are about 5 links there to other threads where questions like your questions have been discussed. Try that out. You may get very detailed answers to your own questions if you do.

    Then after thinking through the information on these threads see if you still have more to ask.
     
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  9. Luckysingh

    Luckysingh Canada
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    In all honesty, I think that the OP has already stepped into a relationship and is now doing some research!!!
    Not that I have any problem with that at all.

    I don't think that it has anything much to do with being modern as such. I too was born in UK and so was my father and I am double your age!
    I think it's about the current times more than anything.

    I know that in UK there is a lot and I mean a lot of controversy surrounding anand Karaj regulations. There was a time when you would quite often see a Punjabi with a Gora or Gori having anand karaj in gurdwara.

    BUT, in the last few years many jathabandis have rightfully kicked up a fuss about this issue. They have rightfully addressed the real meaning of Anand Karaj.
    Although Sadly, even the 2 Punjabis who have Singh or Kaur in their surname don't actually understand what the anand karaj is anymore than someone with the surname Jones or Smith!!
    And I understand the concern of the youngsters with regards to this.

    Because of this issue, I think it is hitting the young youth who are getting the simple message ''Oh, I can't go out with a gora or gori, because we could never get married''
    This is what they feel, even though they know that their parents would NOT object to them having a partner from a different background and faith.

    I can actually understand this negative impact and concern among many youngsters.
    But sadly, I don't have a solution!!

    I will give a little example below-
    Let's say 10 years ago, a Punjabi girl started seeing a gora and then the parents find out. Well, after some serious discussion, most of them will acknowledge and accept their daughter's future and happiness. They would eventually come around and agree to a marriage and would proceed in the matter. This would mean a normal Punjabi marriage as previously imagined but with their daughter getting married to a Gora in a gurdwara.
    Knowing this, the young daughter would have been inclined to pursue the relationship in the early days because she would have imagined that it would work out in the end with a final seal of marriage.

    However, with the current situation and todays time, we have the same daughter who knows that it won't work out the same in the end. -NO seal, No marriage.
    This is the real issue affecting youth and I know that there must be more numbers than we can imagine out there!
     
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  10. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    It depend on indivisual case..If a sikh woman want to marry Atheist, agnostic white or black whose family don't care whether his wife or children are following sikhism or not then the woman may not face much problem

    But if a sikh woman want to marry South asian Hindu or muslim man who come's from strict patriarchal family then things may be different.May be before marriage he says that he don't mind whether his children will become sikh but later on he may take U turn willingly or because of pressure from family.He may want his wife to do some things which are against sikhism.
     
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  11. Brother Onam

    Brother Onam United States
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    Har bless you, my dear sister,
    There is no hard-and-fast injunction against marrying someone outside the faith; it's really more a practical issue. As Harry Haller ji has well stated, the realistics of building a relationship and perhaps family is quite difficult between two sharing unrelated philosophies. I commend you for clinging to your Sikh faith and identity in spite of family indifference. I find it funny they encourage you to marry Punjabi while yet teaching you nothing of Sikh faith. My sister, I would encourage you to go to gurdwara and take it upon yourself to explore and experience Sikh spirituality; you sound to me like one who has a love for Har Har, but with little outside support and encouragement.
    It is a beautiful quest, when you seek out the Beautiful.
     
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  12. Ishna

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    There are a few separate issues here.

    1. anand karaj should be restricted to Sikhs only as explained clearly and concisely here:

    Interfaith Weddings? Non-Sikhs in Anand Karaj? Sikh Rehat Maryada - YouTube

    2. The SGPC Sikh Rehat Maryada indicates that Sikhs should marry Sikhs.

    3. Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji encourages marriage not just of two bodies but of two souls. It doesn't really say anything else about marriage as it's not a book of rules.

    4. Like Harryji already said, it makes common sense for people to have similar beliefs before they marry. Personal experience tells me this is important (important for ease of raising children, ease of daily routine, being able to share your religion with someone, being able to have experiences together and relate them to a common spirituality) but also that people's beliefs can change over time. Today's Sikh might be tomorrow's atheist or the other way around.

    5. There's nothing to stop you marrying a non-Sikh via secular marriage. But it would be good to think about it carefully and not just with your heart as that will eventually wear off in one or two years and you'll find yourself thinking with your head. Try thinking with your head first.

    Good luck, and please take time to learn about your religion as it's the most beautiful one in the world.
     
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    #11 Ishna, Apr 28, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2013
  13. missnice91

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    OP means open poster? That's me right...
    Nope I'm not in a relationship. I'm just doing some research.
    I have a gora friend that seems so nice. We both have discussed that we could not be together because he is christian and I'm indian so we both have doubts. We are just friends but I just wanted to ask that questions. Thanks for the answer.
     
  14. missnice91

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    Thank you for the message. Yes, it's a bit difficult when family expect you to know everything already. I will try to explore and experience Sikh spirituality more :)
     
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  15. missnice91

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    Thank you for the message, it helped a lot. I think I'm confused because I lack knowledge about Sikhism. I shall explore the faith more :)
     
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  16. dalvindersingh grewal

    dalvindersingh grewal India
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    #15 dalvindersingh grewal, Apr 29, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 29, 2013
  17. dalvindersingh grewal

    dalvindersingh grewal India
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    Thanks for clarifying since I mistook otherwise. I will only advise you to understand the real essence of Sikhism. We have number of webpages available and number of printed material too is available. However you can get best practical advice by visiting Sat Sangat in a Gurdwara. You may pose you problem with folded hands to the sat sangat and you will be getting answers to your queries.

    Sikhism is a gem of a religion which teaches you all aspects of life and spirituality. Started by Guru Nanak, developed by nine Gurus from Guru Angad to Guru Gobind Singh has created exemplary saint soldiers many of whom laid their lives protecting not only their religion but the helpless people including girls from the tyranny of Mughals. They served the humanity wholeheartedly. They always pray for the welfare of the entire universe; and serve and assist any one in need. Sri Guru Granth Sahib which contains teachings of 6 Gurus and other saints is a spiritual repertoire. It helps one get spiritual bliss. One must read understand and practise the teaching to understand Sikhism.
     
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  18. Harkiran Kaur

    Harkiran Kaur Canada
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    Hey what does ethnicity have to do with it? I am a Gori, but I follow the Sikh faith of my own accord. Should I not be allowed Anand Karaj because I am a Gori?
     
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  19. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    It is an excellent point, although I am sure my veerji was not intimating this. The issue is should people who are undergoing anand Karaj be checked for Sikhi?

    The 'Gora' issue only is an issue because one assumes a 'Gora' would be just going through the motions, but a nice choc skinned person gets the benefit of the doubt.

    I think sometimes we all forget that Sikhism is not just a Punjabi religion with Punjabi facets, it is a global way of life with many facets.
     
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  20. Luckysingh

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    That isn't the point being made here !
    anand karaj should be rightfully for followers of the Sikh faith.
    How can you define who is a follower or not ??
    How can you prove that you follow on your own accord ??

    Solution to your questions is-
    Well, in the UK, their answer seems to be someone with Punjabi parents and/or with a Kaur or Singh in their name.
    Or if the person has take amrit and changed their name to Mr....Singh or Miss....Kaur

    Therefore, as a gori you would not be allowed unless you have taken amrit and/or have Kaur as part of your surname.
    Otherwise, unless the gyani knows you from attendance at the gurdwara and participation in sangat, you wouldn't be allowed to in UK, from what I gather.
    Canadians on the west coast are beginning to follow these regulations.


    Saying all this above and what I said in my previous post, we have the problem where many of us know that some Punjabi youngsters who have the privilege of having Singh and Kaur on their birth certificates- don't give a hoots about Sikhism or sikhi. - They can have no interest or regard whatsoever and don't pusrue any long term interests in sikhi either... BUT they are still allowed !!!!!
    -This is the issue that affects the majority of youngsters whose parents are non-Sikhs.
    It seems unfair on them even thought they may have more interest and be rightfully pursuing the sikhi direction but are not ready to take amrit as yet.
     
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    #19 Luckysingh, Apr 30, 2013
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  21. Ishna

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    Discrimination on the basis of skin colour. How is that different to discrimination on the basis of caste?

    If Sikhs want to enforce who can and cannot have an anand karaj they need to develop a method of determining whether or not someone is a Sikh. If that method is by amrit sanchar then no other kind of Sikh can have an anand karaj, period, even if you've got Kaur or Singh in your name. I'm not arguing either way, but the same rule should be applied ACROSS THE BOARD and not just to white people as that's unfairly discriminatory.
     
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    #20 Ishna, Apr 30, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2013

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