Originally aired on 22nd June 2008 – Here is part 2…

I understand you’re in training at the minute

    • Yes it’s an annual charity bike ride organised by the Sikh Arts and Culture Association. It’s been running now for 19 years and it’s from Birmingham to London. The great things about it is that nowadays people from all communities take part not just Sikhs.

You mention the Sikh Arts and Culture Association there… what constitutes Sikh Culture…

    • Personally having been born in the UK my ‘culture’ is fusion of Eastern based food, Western music and relating to what I’ve grown-up with say, TV, books and relationships.

    • Some of the Asian side of my culture is Sikh and some of it is Punjabi. So something like Gatka, which is a complete martial system which uses spiritual, mental and physical skills and it’s Sikh in nature. So that’s could be Sikh. But take Bangra Bangra music which a lot of Sikh people like… well that’s more regional than religious. And it’s developed as a fusion in terms of mixing R&B beats with traditional drums such as the Dhol. However, this is strictly Punjabi culture not Sikh.
    • Interestingly, when migrants reside in the same country for many generations you can notice for example, turban styles being different? Not sure why but there are now Singapore, Kenyan and Indian Style turbans. If you want a bit a fun, head for ratemyturban.com !!

    • I was recently asked to attend an Interfaith Youth trust meeting at The House of Lords. It was wonderful to see Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims, Jews and Christians all coming together to see if there were specific activities that could be done to promote greater understanding between the kids of today. I found it fascinating that the a shared view was that instead of people being defensive about their beliefs, when the kids worked together they learned more about their own religion and brought out common themes, for example finding common threads in each religion about respecting the environment or performing a service for charity. One group of kids collaborated on developing a leaflet with extracts with religious references.

Here is that week’s Moment of Reflection

A few years back my family went on a Spanish discovery tour. Lead by a great tour guide called Bonzo we visited some spectacular sites including a Synagogue, the AlhambraPalace (which was built by the Moors) and the tomb of Columbus in Saint Mary of the See which is the fourth largest Christian church in the world.

These historic places of worship, no matter the religion that built them, always made me think of the effort and commitment needed to create a space where communities can come together to worship, meditate and also to celebrate.

The essence of the term worship in Sikhism is to dedicate ones life to the path set in the Guru Granth Sahib. ‘Worship’ here is living with the ‘True Lord’ in one’s own mind and ‘serving the Guru by listening, Singing, Believing, Serving and Obeying.

These are the common threads that can help you to merge with God… whether you perform them at home, at a place of worship or in acts of self-less service.

Written by admin

Broadcaster, Presenter, Columnist, Political Blogger & Media Commentator

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