Whilst in India, I met a Sikh, and he showed me a picture of his family. He was proud to show me that his son was wearing the turban (dastaar). He told me that his son is a ‘real Sikh’, but he told me that he himself was not a real Sikh. He is no longer a real Sikh as he cut his hair and stopped wearing the turban. He told me that he was working in Europe at the time of the troubles with Bin Laden. He feared for his life, so he had to stop wearing the turban and cut his hair – a decision which he clearly did not want to take but felt he had no other option.
He showed me the bangle that he wears to show his faith is still Sikh.
I loved hearing him share about his faith, even though his faith is clearly very different from my own. His face came alive as he spoke. But I won’t soon forget the pain on his face as he shared about having to cut his hair and stop wearing the turban.