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One Panth’s “Reviving the Sarbat Khalsa” Workshop Reignites Passion for Unity
Mississauga, ON (April 18, 2012) – One Panth hosted “Reviving the Sarbat Khalsa” on April 15th at the University of Toronto Mississauga to foster unity within the Sikh community. Over thirty young Sikh-Canadians participated in the workshop. It was facilitated by Harinder Singh, co-founder and Chief Programming Officer of the Sikh Research Institute, and Kulvir Singh, co-founder of Seva Food Bank and other Sikh-Canadian initiatives.
Kulvir Singh opened the workshop by asking the attendees to be open-minded about the consensus-building process and to understand that Panthic crises can be an opportunity for everyone to unite. Volunteers of the One Panth team then lead a series of ice-breakers and consensus-building activities to help set the tone for the day.
Harinder Singh presented historical information about the Khalsa and its role in Sarbat Khalsa, the Sikh model for consensus building. He explained that the Khalsa has always had to make tough decisions that involve a painful process, and the Sarbat Khalsa process existed and worked historically for over one hundred years. It provided an platform for the Sikh community to put aside their personal affiliations and address difficult issues facing the Panth in the spirit of oneness and love.
The attendees then had the opportunity to engage in a model Sarbat Khalsa facilitated by Harinder Singh. The model Sarbat Khalsa highlighted the challenges leaders face in making tough decisions based on what’s best for the Panth while still representing their constituencies. The program concluded with a group discussion on community initiatives that could be launched to foster Panthic unity within the GTA.
Attendees felt the workshop enhanced their understanding of Sarbat Khalsa and inspired them to take action. Harjote Singh of Brampton explained, “This seminar has given me a glimpse into what I need to do to better serve the Panth. Without the model trial, I would have no clue how the Sarbat Khalsa process works.” Rapinder Kaur of Brampton said, “This workshop will inspire you to think outside the box and encourage you to live an inspired life.”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
One Panth to Host “Reviving the Sarbat Khalsa” Workshop on April 15th
Toronto, Ontario (April 1, 2012) – Recent events surrounding Bhai Balwant Singh Rajoana have inspired a tremendous sense of energy and unity. This Vaisakhi weekend, One Panth will deliver a workshop, “Reviving the Sarbat Khalsa,” to help build consensus and foster unity within the Sikh community.
One Panth is comprised of Sikh youth who want to create a space for dialogue, collaboration, and collective action. Workshop coordinator Kulvir Singh explains, “Over the past few months, we’ve been thinking a lot about the need for understanding, collaboration and unity amongst Sikh youth in the GTA. There have always been differences of opinion in the Khalsa Panth, but it seems we need to do more to bring together a cross-section of Sikhs to discuss common issues.”
Building on the collaborative efforts of Sikh organizations to support Bhai Rajoana, One Panth hopes the workshop will open up dialogue and serve as a starting point for future community-building initiatives in the GTA. By exploring the Sarbat Khalsa, the historical Sikh model for consensus building, One Panth hopes attendees will learn to better understand diverse perspectives and work to find common ground. “This is a chance for us to come together as a community to create something greater than ourselves and put the concept of sarbat da bhalla into action,” says organizer Amrit Kaur.
The workshop will be held on April 15th 2012 at 9:30 am at the Student Centre at the University of Toronto Mississauga (3359 Mississauga Road North, Mississauga, Ontario L5L 2C6). Harinder Singh, co-founder and Chief Programming Officer of the Sikh Research Institute, will be the lead facilitator for the sessions.