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Opinion Seeking Sikhs

Jan 7, 2005
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3,760
Metro-Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Seeking Sikhs

BY GORDON E. PIFHER, president of British Columbia Conference

Adventist Review ( journal of the Seventh-day Adventist Church )


Reaching out to neighbors to share with them the message of Jesus’ love isn’t restricted to just the person who lives next door—or to those who might look, dress, or believe as we do. The gospel commission of Jesus includes everyone, and for Adventists living in British Columbia, Canada, this means also seeking out and witnessing to the almost 200,000 Sikhs living in the region.

The British Columbia Conference has begun the process of training local church members to reach out to Sikhs. Mary Pillai, an administrative assistant in the conference’s Ministerial Department, recently organized the first Seeking Sikhs Committee. The group has so far met twice at the Surrey Adventist church, in the southwestern region of the province, which holds the most concentrated population of Sikhs in Canada.

The committee’s main focus is to develop resources to help church members grow friendships with their Sikh neighbors. Providing a link between the different cultures are Adventist Sikh families serving as members of the committee. Some of these members are from Punjab, India, and have worked in the Sikh culture for many years.

Why a Seeking Sikhs Committee in BC?

The Sikh population worldwide totals some 23 million, and it’s one of the fastest growing ethnic groups in some British Columbia communities. Many Sikhs are found to be devout spiritual people who are willing to learn more about their Creator God.

As a result of the Seeking-Sikhs initiative, committee members have come to know Sikhs as an industrious and family-oriented group. When you touch the life of a Sikh, you touch a family that extends all the way to Punjab, where 90 percent of the Sikh population still lives. Adventist Church members have found many Sikhs to be searching for spiritual non-Sikh friends to help them and their families face the tremendous challenges they experience in adapting to Canadian culture.

What Do Sikhs Believe?



PRAISING GOD: Sikhs worshiping in their temple. [Photo: iStockphoto.com]


Sikhs originated in the 1500s in Punjab, northern India. Their culture grew up in a region dominated by Hindus and Muslims.

The word “Sikh” means disciple. “Guru” means teacher. And their holy book is called the Guru Granth Sahib, which includes the teachings of their first teacher and the writings of nine special gurus.

Unlike some of their neighbors, Sikhs reject idolatry and caste. They believe in one God, who, they feel, gave them their teachings. Sikhs identify five special evils: ego, anger, greed, attachment, and lust, and believe dedication to daily devotions attains salvation and a personal union with God.

Common Ground

In witnessing to Sikhs, the committee members have found that emphasizing the common beliefs and lifestyles of Adventists and Sikhs is the best approach. These include:
•Believing in one God.Adopting a healthful message—Sikhs are generally vegetarians who neither smoke nor drink.Maintaining a disciplined approach to having personal devotions at least twice each day.
•Encouraging generosity—Sikhs actively join with Adventists in programs defending fellow human beings andhelping those in need.
•Fostering spiritual devotion—for 48 continuous hours each week, Friday through Sunday, many Sikhs spend time reading the writings and singing the songs written by the gurus.
•Sikhs don’t aggressively attempt to proselytize, but they are interested in mutual understanding. They also don’t appear to feel offended when invited to join Adventists in their worship services.

Our Lord asks us to share the Advent message will all people. We may not totally understand the cultural and spiritual practices of others, but we shouldn’t be afraid to reach out to them.

So, go ahead—make a friend for God. It could change your life, as well as theirs.


source:

http://www.adventistreview.org/article/1155/archives/issue-2007-1514/adventist-news-2-feature
 

Ishna

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May 9, 2006
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And their holy book is called the Guru Granth Sahib, which includes the teachings of their first teacher and the writings of nine special gurus.
Evidence of some quality research right there! NOT.

Fostering spiritual devotion—for 48 continuous hours each week, Friday through Sunday, many Sikhs spend time reading the writings and singing the songs written by the gurus.
Akhand paath every week, really?
 

Inderjeet Kaur

Writer
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Oct 13, 2011
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Seattle, Washington, USA
This explains exactly their tactics for converting us. A word to the wise...They do not want to be friends because they like you and they don't ask questions about Sikhi because they're interested.

I knew a Christian woman who kept asking me questions about Sikhi. I would answer and then in a day or two she would come back with some biblical refutation. She was taking my statements back to her Bible group, and getting words from them to contradict me. It took them all a long time before it got through their heads that using the Bible to prove their points wouldn't work with someone who didn't believe in the Bible.

Try not to be rude; they really believe this is for your own good. They mean well. Be polite and be aware.

I know I'm harping on this, maybe too much, but we Sikhs need to be aware.

animatedkhanda1
 

Harry Haller

Panga Master
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Jan 31, 2011
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I dislike subterfuge and game playing in any aspect of life.

Long term, it never works, in relationships, in business, and certainly not in finding salvation.

It only ever leads to disappointment, because at some stage the music has to stop, and reality has to kick in.

It all sounds very two faced to me
 

Inderjeet Kaur

Writer
SPNer
Oct 13, 2011
869
1,763
Seattle, Washington, USA
I dislike subterfuge and game playing in any aspect of life.

Long term, it never works, in relationships, in business, and certainly not in finding salvation.

It only ever leads to disappointment, because at some stage the music has to stop, and reality has to kick in.

It all sounds very two faced to me
But it's all for your own good, you see...

I'm tired. Tomorrow.
 

Navdeep88

Writer
SPNer
Dec 23, 2009
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this is Dumb!

I Love the subtlity in Language here:

"recently organized the first Seeking Sikhs Committee" Sikhs are already Sought, they don't Need seeking...

"Some of these members are from Punjab, India, and have worked in the Sikh culture for many years" Thanks for letting us know, we shall be aware of the rabbit-hole from which you Spring. =)

"Many Sikhs are found to be devout spiritual people who are willing to learn more about their Creator God." If they are Practicing Sikhs, they already Know their Creator God, it's not Smthing completely Foreign to them, its a Sustaining Relationship. This statement makes it Seem like they must be missing out on smthng, or they don't quite have it.

"tremendous challenges they experience in adapting to Canadian culture" Or, they have Children, Siblings who are already immersed in the Culture, & can Distinguish the Price @ which Help from "Strangers" comes from.

"Their culture grew up in a region dominated by Hindus and Muslims" Nice, to point out the Weakness in History, so you can be the Next dominating Factor. Nah, I Don't Think So.

They believe in one God, who, they feel, gave them their teachings. Ah, So it's a Feeling & not the Truth. Check & Mate, motives out in the Open brah.
 

TigerStyleZ

SPNer
Mar 31, 2011
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Germany
Guru Amar Dass Jee was once asked a question. “Why did Guru Nanak Dev Jee come on to this Earth and preach his message, when the Hindu way of living had already been established?”
Please take a moment to read and reflect on Guru Amar Das Jee’s answer: “When rain falls on this planet, is there no water already on this Earth?". Guru Jee elaborated that "The teachings of the Vedas and Puranas are accessible only to the few of higher castes and to those who engage in education for a long time. They are just like water in a well. A well is dug with great difficulty and when it is complete it can serve only a small number of people. The Word of the Guru is like the rain. It drops from heaven irrespectively on the high and the low. In spite of the wells, people still need the rain. So, Akaal Purakh, has sent the Guru, whose word is intelligible to the masses and within the reach of all, to shower us with divinity.”
[Based on Bhai Santokh Singh - Gurpratap Surajgranth]
 

Scarlet Pimpernel

We seek him here,we sikh
Writer
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May 31, 2011
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In the Self
I do not share that common error of judging another by myself. I easily believe that another man may have qualities different from mine. Because I feel myself tied down to one form, I do not oblige everybody else to espouse it, as all others do. I believe in and conceive a thousand contrary ways of life (façons de vie); and in contrast with the common run of men, I more easily admit difference than resemblance between us. I am as ready as you please to acquit another man from sharing my conditions and principles. I consider him simply in himself, without relation to others; I mold him to his own model. (F 169) Montaigne
 

Inderjeet Kaur

Writer
SPNer
Oct 13, 2011
869
1,763
Seattle, Washington, USA
this is Dumb!

I Love the subtlity in Language here:

"recently organized the first Seeking Sikhs Committee" Sikhs are already Sought, they don't Need seeking...

"Some of these members are from Punjab, India, and have worked in the Sikh culture for many years" Thanks for letting us know, we shall be aware of the rabbit-hole from which you Spring. =)

"Many Sikhs are found to be devout spiritual people who are willing to learn more about their Creator God." If they are Practicing Sikhs, they already Know their Creator God, it's not Smthing completely Foreign to them, its a Sustaining Relationship. This statement makes it Seem like they must be missing out on smthng, or they don't quite have it.

"tremendous challenges they experience in adapting to Canadian culture" Or, they have Children, Siblings who are already immersed in the Culture, & can Distinguish the Price @ which Help from "Strangers" comes from.

"Their culture grew up in a region dominated by Hindus and Muslims" Nice, to point out the Weakness in History, so you can be the Next dominating Factor. Nah, I Don't Think So.

They believe in one God, who, they feel, gave them their teachings. Ah, So it's a Feeling & not the Truth. Check & Mate, motives out in the Open brah.
Brilliant! The only change I would make is to change "rabbit-hole" to "snake-hole." But the poor dears actually believe they are helping us; they don't really mean any harm.

And they have no idea that they are being patronising and feeling oh, so superior to those poor Punjabis.

I wonder if they'll get a backlink (or whatever it's called; I'm not too bright, you know) to this. I'm certain that reading our comments would be a whole new perspective on us Sikhs.

animatedkhanda
 
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Ishna

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May 9, 2006
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I think I can understand their perspective a bit. When you feel like you've got the best deal in the world you want to share it with people. They feel they have the love of God and salvation and they want other people to experience it as well. They also think we're all going to Hell, and they don't want us to go there.

Likewise, sometimes I get all over-excited about Sikhi and wonder how other people can't see the beauty and freedom and Truth shining brightly. Sometimes I really have to stop myself from coming across as proselyting.

But I would never march the streets waking people up at 10am on Sunday to ask if they've heard the Good News!
 

Inderjeet Kaur

Writer
SPNer
Oct 13, 2011
869
1,763
Seattle, Washington, USA
I think I can understand their perspective a bit. When you feel like you've got the best deal in the world you want to share it with people. They feel they have the love of God and salvation and they want other people to experience it as well. They also think we're all going to Hell, and they don't want us to go there.
I had the perfect encounter-with-a-Christian today. I was going to the doctor in a van from a transport agency. When we drove past a gurudwara, the driver commented,"That's a Sikh church."

"Gurudwara," I said.

"Are you a Sikh?"

"Yes."

"Oh, have you heard the Good News about Jesus Christ?"

"Yes, many times."

"OK, then, just wanted to be sure."

And the convo went on to other topics.
 

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