Sikhs dating non sikhs
Our Gurus would be quite disappointed with us, as a community. You just can’t have a working inter-faith marriage….. We are told that we must marry a girl who is of the same religion, sometimes of the same race. However, in order to be fair to the community and (more importantly) to the issue, I’ll play a bit of devil’s advocate. But let’s say that you really do love a man or woman of another religion and you are willing to give your life for them. If one side forces the other to give up his/her religion, it looks bad. Under the media radar, such disruptions of interfaith marriages at Sikh gurdwaras have become worryingly commonplace across Britain.In July 2013, a Sikh woman and her Christian husband in Swindon were locked out of their own wedding by 40 protesters, who afterwards posted a gleeful video online of the bride’s mother pleading with them to stop. One of the very few Sikh women willing to speak about her experience, she says: “Our gurdwaras are run by men and the protesters are all men.“Isn’t it better,” she asks, “that we teach our partners and their friends and family about this ceremony and invite them in, rather than building a wall and creating a divide? British Sikhs – who number about 400,000 – are largely seen as a model minority who aren’t embroiled in controversies or plagued by extremists as Muslims are.But scratch the surface and there are signs of a growing divide between the liberal and more conservative Sikhs here, and the controversy around interfaith marriages goes to the heart of the problem.Until I posted several videos of wedding disruptions to my Facebook page last month, there seemed to be barely any debate about why they were happening.
Britain’s Sikhs, long seen as a minority success story, are plagued by a faction of young men ‘defending’ their vision of the culture – and seeking to impose their views by attacking the nuptials of women who marry ‘out’ It was meant to be the happiest day of their lives – a celebration of modern multicultural Britain at the biggest Sikh gurdwara (temple) in the Western world.Most British Sikhs I have spoken to feel shocked and embarrassed that weddings in the UK are being disrupted in this way, but are usually too worried about the backlash from fundamentalists to say so openly – and it is a very British phenomenon.The controversy has barely affected India, home to 90 per cent of the world’s 20 million Sikhs, where interfaith marriages (especially to Hindus) are common.From my personal experience, I have had two males with turbans ask about dating or marrying me.Both of them I told them no, only because I am not into rushing into relationships like most people of my generation.
Unfortunately, Sikh culture and tradition are not very accepting (nor forgiving, for that matter) of Inter-faith marriages.