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Ante
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11 Jul 2005, 11:10 pm

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Last edited by Ante on 09 Nov 2005, 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Bec
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11 Jul 2005, 11:50 pm

Before reading your post, I didn't know anything about Sikhism. I like it and I'm going to research it. Thanks, AntiEverything.



Tom
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12 Jul 2005, 4:01 am

Underrated? You obviously didn't grow up in my town. My school was nearly all half Sikh and I HATE Divali because they let off fireworks all week



duncvis
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12 Jul 2005, 4:32 am

Er, Divali is a Hindu festival Tom... :lol:


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Tom
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12 Jul 2005, 5:03 am

:oops:



Sanityisoverrated
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12 Jul 2005, 9:23 am

AntiEverything wrote:
I believe it is one of the best and most underrated religions, especially compared to Christianity, Islam and Hinduism


Yes well, unfortunately we have to choose that which we believe is true, not that which we like the look of. This is not a salad bar we're talking about here.



oatwillie
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12 Jul 2005, 10:39 am

Sikhism truly seems to espouse very high ethical principles. In defense of Western Faith, so does Christianity in its truest interpretation; it is when "religious" dogma either dilutes or encumbers these principles that it falls prey to elitism and unwarranted heiarchy.

I think it helps to learn more, because it bolsters faith in the Divine, even if it detracts from religious interpretation that tends to "make God in man's own image."



rumio
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12 Jul 2005, 2:19 pm

this will probably be a long post but this stuff is my Numero Uno obsession

Quote:

Yes well, unfortunately we have to choose that which we believe is true, not that which we like the look of. This is not a salad bar we're talking about here.



that's good for starters

Quote:
One God: There is only one God, who has infinite qualities and names; She or he (see note below regarding sex neutrality) is the same for all religions. 'He' has no sex, but is present within all things and all places.



This is pretty much the concept of Allah in Islam. Allah is not a person or even an entity in any way that we would understand such things, let alone 'male' or 'female'. Grammatically speaking the word Allah is neuter. The most basic principle of Islam is that there is indeed only one God, which is the same God as Jews and Christians worship. In Islam Allah traditionally has 99 names as these are the ones mentioned in The Qu'ran - ya Rahman (the Merciful), ya Rahim (the Compassionate), ya Nur (the Light), ya Haqq (the Truth) and so on and all these names are valid ways of referring to God.


Quote:

It is made perfectly clear God isn't a specific being which is admirably straightforward. It also doesn't discriminate against the female sex with a male God.



See above, but while we're on the subject, Allah is most often referred to as He etc but why does this infer discrimination against females?


Quote:
It unequivocally condemns living in idle luxury and demands to be righteous one must be dedicated to the redistribution of wealth.


One of the Five Pillars of Islam, ie the most basic things that one has to do in order to be a Muslim is zakat, which means charity. It is basically a poor tax, payable by all adult muslims and is used for the support of the poor and needy. It was instigated by the Prophet Muhammad from the earliest days in Mecca and remains there to this day. The Prophet constantly preached against the accumulation of wealth for its own end and lived a very frugal life. He used to say that food enough for one was enough for two, food enough two was enough for four...

Quote:

It plainly encourages being open to all people and not ignoring, disregarding or discriminating against anyone.



When the Prophet began his teaching of the faith we call Islam he and his followers were persecuted, harassed, ostracised and excluded from their society, so much so that they had to leave Mecca and settle in another city 200 miles away in order to be safe. The reason for this was that the teachings were extremely radical. Muhammad taught egalitarianism. His message was that everyone was equal before God, no matter what their status in society, their wealth, power etc. That was all meaningless to Muhammad, it was person's actions and character that were the most important. Anybody could (and can) become a muslim, it's not to do with race or birth or anything else, it's to do with your own individual motivation. All this was extremely challenging to the establishment in Mecca which was very hierarchical and given to tribal fighting and oppression of the poor by the rich. Power was also linked to the old tribal gods and who controlled the worship of them etc. Muhammad and his followers threatened this status quo so much they had to migrate and establish themselves elsewhere. Eventually Mecca was converted of course. A major part of the egalitarian message was to do with women and their treatment and status. By modern lights it probably doesn't look much but by the standards of the time Muhammad was basically an emancipator of women and they were afforded far more rights and status by Muhammad than they had ever had before. He also outlawed female infanticide which was very common at the time.

Quote:
Many Paths lead to God: The Sikhs believe that Salvation can be obtained by non-Sikhs as well.


Islam calls itself 'al sirat'al mustaqu'im', the Straight Path; it doesn't say there are not other paths but it considers itself the one that will take you by the most direct route. (Notwithstanding threats of hellfire for sinners and disbelievers of course, but see sanity's quote at the top!)

Quote:

No Special Worship Days: Sikhs do not believe that any particular day is holier than any other.



there is no sabbath in Islam. The notion that God had to rest after His labours in creating the world is alien and bizarre to Islam. But there are auspicious days and months, Ramadan being the most well known. Every day us holy, as is every place. The day is punctuated by prayers which can be offerred wherever you happen to be.

Quote:

Underlying Values
Actions Count: Salvation is obtained by one’s actions – Good deeds, remembrance of God, etc.



this is identical

Quote:

Prohibited Behaviour

Non-Logical Behaviour: Superstitions and rituals not meaningful to Sikhs (pilgrimages; fasting; bathing in rivers; circumcision; worship of graves, idols, pictures; compulsory wearing of the veil for women; etc.)



each to their own really, depends where you find meaning yourself; ritual and symbol are very beautiful and powerful ways of aligning ourselves with God, they can always ossify and become meaningless but that's the way of things and it's up to the individual to not let that happen

Quote:

Priestly Class: Sikhs do not have to depend on a priest for performing any religious functions.



there are no priests in Islam. See above about the egalitarianism of the Prophet's teaching - it applies spiritually as well as economically and socially. The sole spiritual relationship is between the individual and Allah, there is no intercessor, priest or saviour, we are responsible purely for our own actions. I suppose many people might think of imams as priests but this is not the case, they lead prayers in a mosque and may well teach etc but they have no religious authority as such and there are no services or rituals over which they preside.

None of this is an attempt to convert anyone or anything, just another view really but I think islam is very misunderstood, which I've picked up in a few threads since I've been on this site so this is just to balance things up. While I'm here though (*raises a finger and launches into preacher mode*) talking of under-rated religions I personally believe islam has huge potential for the West, particularly in it's Sufi aspect, which is where I'm coming from. It's really very beautiful and simple, and very powerful as way of spiritual development.

p.s.

Quote:
In defense of Western Faith, so does Christianity in its truest interpretation;



Christianity is a western faith?

p.p.s. Can anyone tell me how to get the person's name above the quote? I'm not very good with this kind of stuff.



BrianR
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12 Jul 2005, 3:27 pm

Sanityisoverrated wrote:
AntiEverything wrote:
I believe it is one of the best and most underrated religions, especially compared to Christianity, Islam and Hinduism


Yes well, unfortunately we have to choose that which we believe is true, not that which we like the look of. This is not a salad bar we're talking about here.


But the first step to finding what rings true to us is being familiar with a variety of different ideas. Then we use our experience and judgment to choose what we ultimately believe to be true.



oatwillie
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12 Jul 2005, 5:06 pm

p.s.

Quote:
In defense of Western Faith, so does Christianity in its truest interpretation;



Christianity is a western faith?

p.p.s. Can anyone tell me how to get the person's name above the quote? I'm not very good with this kind of stuff.[/quote]

Sure!....Sikh and ye shall find...har, har! Out here in the Old West, Christianity tends to be the faith of preference 'round the campfire along the lonesome cattle trails, and is embraced by many a fine faithful cowboy on his quest to be in good standing and tall in the saddle when he meets his maker.

But seriously, the Eastern/Western delineation of Philosophy and Spirituality is likely to be much less prevalent in your region than it is in the customarily (but, not exclusively) JudeoChristian, United States. It could be an "Ugly American" thing.

The expression may be getting a bit archane, as there are more Muslims in the U.S. than Methodists.



Bec
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12 Jul 2005, 5:11 pm

I did end up reading more about Sikhism. I don't agree with everything, but I like a lot of their philosophy.

rumio wrote:
I think islam is very misunderstood, which I've picked up in a few threads since I've been on this site so this is just to balance things up.


Your post was interesting. Thank you for giving your explanation of Islam.

rumio wrote:
p.p.s. Can anyone tell me how to get the person's name above the quote? I'm not very good with this kind of stuff.


These symbols, [quote ] [/quote ], surround the quote. To have a name above the quote, you write an equal sign (=) and the name with quotation marks (" ") around it. For example:

[quote= "rumio"] ... [ /quote]

Without the spaces though.



oatwillie
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12 Jul 2005, 7:46 pm

Thanks, Bec...you helped me as well. (I can barely work the smiley icons)

And ...Rumio, Rumio how "far out"* thou, Rumio...sorry I was a little flip with my response. I am aware of the common thread and ground of faiths originating in the land of Abraham and how geographically it is closer to East, not West. Where I am from Eastern thought includes anything East of Canaan, pretty much.

I always enjoy your discourse on Sufiism and find it to be a deep and meaningful path that should be admired in its fervent pursuit of righteousness.

* meant in the complimentary sense. :)



Sean
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13 Jul 2005, 12:39 am

Christianity is an Eastern religion. It orignated in Asia.



Sanityisoverrated
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13 Jul 2005, 5:26 am

And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green
And was the holy lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen

And did the countenance divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills
And was Jerusalem builded there
Among those dark Satanic mills



...No.



Tom
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13 Jul 2005, 5:30 am

Sanityisoverrated wrote:
And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green
And was the holy lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen

And did the countenance divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills
And was Jerusalem builded there
Among those dark Satanic mills



...No.


I hate that song....



Sanityisoverrated
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13 Jul 2005, 6:00 am

How could you possibly hate it? It's like the Dr Seuss of hymns!