April is Sikh Heritage Month
April has officially been named Sikh Heritage Month in British Columbia.
Former Premier Christy Clark made the announcement on April 7, 7017 and declared that 15 South Asian sites–including Vancouver’s Punjabi Market–would be added to British Columbia’s Register of Historic Places.
Sikhs arrived in British Columbia over 100 years ago and early immigrants built a community around their faith. The Khalsa Diwan Society was established in 1906 and constructed the very first Gurdwara (Sikh temple) in 1908 at 1866 West 2 Avenue in Vancouver. The temple was also believed to be the first Gurdwara in all of North America.
April also marks the celebration of Vaisakhi, an event which honours the creation of the Khalsa in Sikhism. Vancouver and Surrey both host Vaisakhi parades, which are the biggest in North America.
Sikh Heritage Month aims to celebrate the contributions and aspirations of Sikh Canadians to develop a greater appreciation and understanding of a rich, unique, and diverse heritage. Sikh Heritage Month will also facilitate collective learning through intercultural and interfaith community participation.
Sikh Heritage Month: 5 Ks & Kadha Parshad – Giani Gurdeep Singh
In celebrating April as Sikh Heritage Month, ReD FM’s Morning Show host Harjinder Thind speaks to Giani Gurdeep Singh about the “5 Ks – Kesh, Kanga, Kara, Kachera, Kirpan & Kadha Parshad”. Giani Gurdeep Singh explains when Guru Gobind Singh JI gave the gift of the Five K’s to the Khalsa he said that by following the teachings of the Guru and keeping themselves disciplined, they will have his eternal love, grace, love and support. He also spoke about the significance of the “Kadha Parshad”.
Sikh Heritage Month: Sikh Philosophy – Professor Kashmira Singh
In celebrating April as Sikh Heritage Month, ReD FM’s Morning Show host Harjinder Thind speaks to Professor Kashmira Singh about Sikh Philosophy. Prof. Kashmira explains that Sikhism encompasses everyone, encouraging inclusivity. Sikh Philosophy stands for Equality, Fraternity & Liberty. Sikhs should respect everyone and live in harmony with the environment. Quoting the Sikh Holy Scripture (SGGSJ) which states, “Air is the Guru, water is the father and Earth is the great mother. Day and night are like two nurses who look after us”; Prof. Kashmira says the idea of globalization has been a concept embedded in Sikhism for centuries.
Sikh Heritage Month – Sikh Struggles In Canada
In celebrating April as Sikh Heritage Month, RED FM’s Morning Show host Harjinder Thind speaks to Gian Singh Sandhu about the struggles, tribulations & resilience of Sikhs who moved to Canada since 1897 onwards. Sandhu – a Sikh Entrepreneur, member of the Order of British Columbia and an immigrant – who came to Canada in 1970, relates how for first Sikh settlers in Canada, coming to a strange land meant putting up with racism. Persistence and hard work allowed them to call Canada, HOME.