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Vaisakhi

14 April 2018

In celebration of Vaisakhi Day by BC Gov on Flickr.com

Sikh new year festival commemorating an important act in the establishment of the Sikh religion.

Sikh new year festival commemorating an important act in the establishment of the Sikh religion.

Vaisakhi was celebrated as a new year and harvest festival in the Punjab region of India/Pakistan long before Sikhism began. But in 1699 the tenth Guru, Guru Gobind Singh, used the occasion of the festival to challenge Sikhs to show allegiance to their religion.

Five volunteers responded to his challenge to enter his tent and sacrifice their heads to their Guru. In the end they were unharmed, but because of their willingness to sacrifice themselves the Guru baptised them and gave them the title of Panj Piare (“the five beloved ones”). This is seen as the beginning of the Khalsa, or collective Sikh brotherhood, and many Sikhs choose to be baptised into the Khalsa during Vaisakhi.

In the Punjab and in Sikh communities all around the world Vaisakhi is marked with processions and parades, as Sikhs celebrate their culture and religion.

Find out more about Vaisakhi from the following websites:

For secondary students (11-16) there is an assembly script and film clips about Vaisakhi on the TrueTube website.

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14 April 2018
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