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Birth of Sikhism in Africa

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It is commonly believed by Gurmukhs that Sikhi is a priced valuable and a most serious kirpa by Guru Ji is needed for it to be bestowed on an individual. But, first an individual is tested; stretched to the limit before such kirpa is blessed.

Our ancestors stepped on this continent, Africa, over a century ago in search for a better living or for a greener pasture. When they left their motherland, they left with two valuables; a need to return one day after many years of hard work, and their love for the Guru. The tears of sorrow for their loved ones soiled their clothes, and in grief they asked Guru Ji for guidance. In Mukopa at the coast, in Railway Landhies Nairobi and many other locations, they dug a hole and planted the Nishan Sahib, a symbol of Sikhism that holds our Khanda in the clouds. They made Gurudwaras close to their homes, and loved the Guru like their mother, father, wife, child; like they were the limbs of the Guru.

A Sikh’s desire is to live in the will of the Guru; and so, when Guru Ji desired, some of our ancestors met their loved ones and lived with their families in the part of the world. Many sacrifices were made; never to see many of our loved ones again, never to return home, to live away from our culture, heritage and faith.

Amidst the joy of building a future elsewhere on this planet, there lay a deep sorrow of having no hands to hold in sickness or good health. It is said, that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. Sikhs on this land ascended to great heights and their faith in Waheguru was like a pillar; unwavering love for the panth.

The circumstances built a man who was robust, stable and intellectual physically and mentally; a man that looked for opportunities in the dark, all alone and one who had faith in whatever he did. And so he planned for today, tomorrow and for generations to come. In all this, the man saw a great and rare quality he wished his future generations to benefit from; the strength of Sikhi. In his dreams, he saw a vibrant Sikh community in Kenya, with Chardi Kallah Singhs who would work and live in the principles of Kirt karo, naam japo and vand chako.

These three principles formed the basis of an organization called Sikh Students Federation. It was formed in the early 1960s with intention of nurturing Sikhism within the younger generation. Over the years, it has transformed the lives of many youngsters and helped them to keep steadfast in through the turbulent pressures of adolescence and youthful living. The organization changed name to iSikh, at the recommendation and guidance of Bhai Sahib Bhai Mohinder Singh Ji, who is revered as a guiding saint by all members of iSikh. One of the long standing and dedicated sewadars, Harbhajan Singh inspired the lives of many youngsters and it is the footsteps of such GurSikhs that we live.

iSikh has a mission statement;

“To promote the principles of Sikhism within the Sikh youth, to nurture their knowledge of our history and the Gurus’ teachings so that they can make a more informed judgement about being an Amritdhari, and so that they can move closer to achieving this ultimate goal”

Each member of iSikh is a dedicated player; there are no boundaries or divisions or surnames in our organization. We are the children of that One Guru; Guru Gobind Singh Ji. Our mother, Mata Sahib Kaur. United we stand.