Jul 28, 2014
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Plainview Sikhs Celebrate Date of Their Founding

Hundreds gather at the gurdwara on Old Country Road and remember their roots.

Plainview Sikhs Celebrate Date of Their Founding Plainview Sikhs Celebrate Date of Their Founding Plainview Sikhs Celebrate Date of Their Founding Plainview Sikhs Celebrate Date of Their Founding Plainview Sikhs Celebrate Date of Their Founding

Hundreds of people from around Long Island came to Plainview's Thursday to celebrate the date of the religion's founding.

With prayer, food and camaraderie, they celebrated the  Vaiskhi holiday at the  Gurdwara, or place of worship, on Old Country Road.

"On this day in 1699,  the Sikh religion was given this identity by our 10th living prophet "Guru Gobind Singh," said member Mohinder Singh Taneja, who introduced visitors to many of the religious community's leaders and members while serving food from an elaborate buffet.

The festival, observed worldwide on April 13 or 14, commemorates the day in 1699 when the 10th  Sikh GuruGuru Gobind Singh, established the religion at  Anandpur Sahib, the holy city in Punjab, India, known as "the holy City of Bliss.

The holiday is one of the most significant in the  Sikh calendar, commemorating the  establishment of the Khalsa, the collective body of baptized Sikhs, at  Anandpur Sahib in 1699, by the 10th  Sikh GuruGuru Gobind Singh.

Scores of the faithful surrounded a flagpole and prayed outside the gurdwara about noon on Thursday. Flying above them was a triangular orange flag known as the Nishan Sahib, a symbol of their faith.

"It is like the Red Cross (flag)," said Sandeep Singh, a member of the gurdwara which has conducted numerous outreach programs in the Plainview community. "We are a welcoming religion. A place of shelter. We take in people of any faith and care for them. We always have food for them."

And inside a large tent erected on the grounds, a feast was underway throughout the day. A wide assortment of vegetarian dishes and sweets were available to visitors.

Sikhs follow the teachings of the 10 enlightened leaders known as the  Sikh gurus, and follow the holy scripture called Gurū Granth Sāhib Ji.

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