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|Summary of Question:
|Interview For A Practising Sikh
|General Q's from Non-Sikhs
|Sunday, 7/07/2002 9:32 AM MDT
My name is Dylan Evans,I am twelve years old and, for my exams,am doing a project on Sikhism. I would be deeply grateful if you could please answer the following questions on your religion:
How many times a day do you pray?
- Twice: once in the early morning, before the sun rises for about an hour and a half (5 prayers usually, depending on the person), and once in the evening for a half hour (2 prayers, some people say one at sunset and one just before sleeping; others say them both before sleeping).
Are there any foods that you are not allowed to eat?
- Sikhs are encouraged not to eat any kind of animal (fish, bird, red meat, eggs) as it is considered lowly and cruel and spiritually unclean.
Do you have to get up three hours before dawn every day?
- Sikhs should get up 2 and a half hours before dawn every day to pray. But it is a personal choice; if you have faith in the Guru (teacher) who has given that lifestyle as a way to merging with God, then you will get up and pray. It depends on the person and thier relationship with the Guru's teachings.
Are there any beliefs of your religion that you find hard to believe in modern life?
- I don't personally find any of them dificult to practice, but some people have a hard time not cutting their hair, which is suggested as a part of living as God perfectly created you.
Is your religion easy to live with?
- For me it would be impossible to live without.
Are there any rules of your religion that are very strange or irrelevant?
- No, Sikhism is a very practical way of life.
If you could make any changes to the rules of your religion, would you, and what would they be?
- Sikhism isn't really about rules, but it does have diciplines suggested by the Guru. You either follow the Guru's teachings or you don't. I wouldn't change anything about it because I know that the Guru knows way more than I do.
Has your family always been Sikh or are you converts?
- My parents converted to Sikhism after they got into Yoga in the '70s. I was born into it.
Is there a Sikh day of rest?
Do you find it insensitive that there are such large commercial celebrations for Christian festivals?
- No. I love Christ and think he's very much worth celebrating. If it inspires people to be good and kind and generous then it's pretty great in my book.
Thank you for your time.