Monday, February 20, 2006

Why are Sikhs Being Spit On?

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh,

Why is it that wherever you look Sikhs are being portrayed in a negative light? Bollywood has put Sardars into a ‘joker’ role. People make insulting Sardar jokes without a second thought. Youth are searching for excuses to cut their hair because they think it’s un-cool. Who is to blame? I will venture to say Sikhs are.

I believe that in general Sikh’s these days seem to be lacking confidence in who they are and what they stand for. This is the most confusing part. Guru Sahib is at our side, our father Shahi Shaahan Shaah Gur Gobind Singh, is the King of all Kings. Why do we need to doubt ourselves or feel inferior about ourselves when our father is the king of all kings.

In a worldly sense when someone’s father is someone famous like a movie actor, or someone’s father is a well respected man in the community, their children walk around with there head up basically saying my father is great, so am I. Some people believe they have a tough crew so they walk around like they own the world and no one can touch them, because they know they have support behind them incase anything happens.

Well Guru Sahib is the greatest father of all, they mastered martial arts, the art of war, spirituality, and they had compassion, and had no fear in the world. Guru Sahib had all the great gunn’s of the world combined. They had Dhaya (compassion), Dharm (religion), Himmat (strength), Mokham (steadfast), and they were a Sahib (master). When we have such a great father supporting us, who no one can even come close to, why do we need to feel inferior or lack confidence.

We should be proud and secure of who we are and what Guru Sahib has molded us into. So what if we look different, so what if we stand out, so what if we don’t live the lifestyle that most people are living today. Khalsa is nyaara (distinct), the Sikhi lifestyle is going to get us somewhere, the Sikhi lifestyle liberates us and free’s us from worldly maya. In the next world or when we are liberated we will be glad that we lived as Sikhs. Dukh can’t touch us, when people need help they will come to us and trust us. Guru Sahib has given us all the answers, answers the others are running around trying to find out. They don’t know why they have been given this life, and they don’t know what to do with this life or how to live it. We have been spoon fed these answers from Guru Sahib, our father has so lovingly taught us all we need to know. How lucky we are.

All this being said, we do not act as if we have the king of all kings as our father. We busy ourselves with conforming to society and distancing ourselves from our father. The Khalsa Panth is our family and when the family makes a decision we need to support our family. Otherwise when people see the family in shambles they will spit on that family, they will laugh at that family, they will take advantage of that family. Once this happens members of that family will start doubting themselves, and start distancing themselves from the family and be led stray. That is what is happening to the Sikh Quam these days.

In 1984 after Operation Blue Star, Sikhs decided to boycott Air India and other Indian government run companies. To protest the attack on Darbar Sahib, as well as the human rights violations in Punjab and all their broken promises to the Sikhs. How long did that boycott last? Well let’s say, not very long. Once our people saw that they can save $300 dollars by flying Air India instead of another airline they all lined up to buy tickets on Air India. Air India is prospering so much from Sikh business that now they even offer direct flights to Amritsar.

Now let’s contrast this to the Islamic community. Cartoons were printed about their profit Muhammad. They put every Danish business in the Middle East out of business by boycotting them. All Muslims around the world protested and stopped buying Danish products. The Danish economy is going to feel the effects of this for years to come, and people will think twice before trying something like this in the future.

How come the Sikhs boycott of Air India didn’t work, but the Islamic protest on Danish products did. The key difference is this, they are confident about their beliefs, they are confident about whom they are, and this allows them to take a strong stand and stick by it, even if the going gets tough. We as Sikhs seem to have lost our confidence in ourselves and seem to look to others to reassure us that we are ok. We seek to please others to feel better about ourselves; we try to be like others. I believe this comes back to not having the confidence to go out to the world and state we are Sikhs and we have a distinct way of life and we won’t allow people to trample on it or make a mockery of it.

Imagine if anytime a Bollywood film poked fun of a Sardar or Sikhi, all Sikhs around the world boycotted the whole Bollywood industry. That would put a huge dent into Bollywood’s profits. They would think twice before pulling a stunt like that again. Why don’t we do this, because we have forgotten how great our father is, and are to busy trying to act like others. We can’t give up a 3 hour film, or we will go against our family just to save $300 on airfare. In the long run, is saving $300 on a ticket worth your community being pushed around and giving of the image that you cant stand up for yourselves? I really don’t think so.

What’s the solution to the above problem? Why can’t we unite to take a stand and have our message heard? We are over 30 million strong around the world, if we work together our voice will be heard and we can put a stop to a lot of the beadbi going on about the Sikhi saroop and way of life. How can we make this happen? How can we be more confident in ourselves? This is a tougher question to answer. All I can say is be strong in your Sikhi, Guru Sahib themselves will give us the power and support to uphold the honor of our family. After all our father is the King of Kings.

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh