Once we got the news that Harpreet, Ligeia’s brother, was coming to town for a Samagam, a Sikh event, we went right to the map to figure out where Caledon is. Turns out it’s just north of Brampton. We didn’t know what to expect since we had never been to any kind of Sikh event. We also didn’t know how we as outsiders would be treated. We were first greeted by these lovely children pictured above, who helped us find a good spot for our shoes.
We walked inside barefoot in search of scarves to cover our heads. Several people greeted us nicely and welcomed us to the event. The man I spoke with on the phone hugged me as if we had known each other for years. This continued all night – hugs from strangers as if they were family. So many people came to us during the evening and asked if we were doing ok and if we needed anything to not hesitate to ask.
After receiving the scarves, which were like a handkerchief, we went inside the prayer hall where we found Harpreet. Everyone sat on the floor facing in the same direction and at the front there were some musicians playing. Ligeia’s favorite was the tabla. Someone was also chanting and the worshipers would repeat it. The music seemed to getting faster and faster and louder and louder until it was kind of a frenzy almost. At that point all music stopped and there was about 15 minutes of silence. During the entire event, people came up to the front to bow in front of a holy scripture that was being guarded by a man with a feather, who would wave it over the book every once in awhile to keep the dust off it. Wish this man could come to our apartment!
I really liked this way of worship and would like to learn more about it.
After worship we and Harpreet took a walk on the grounds, which were really lovely and a great place to have a spiritual event.
Here’s Ligeia and Harpreet:
No religious event is complete without food! In this case, it was yummy Indian food which included the best mangoes we’ve ever had!
Here’s Harpreet and Mindy just after eating a great meal!
It was great to see Harpreet and learn a little about Sikhism. Never have we been so welcomed by any community the way we were by the Sikhs at Samagam Toronto!
Here’s to learning new things,
Ligeia and Mindy :):)