I am Meeta Kaur and I am the managing editor and organizer of The Sikh Love Stories Project. The project started off as a simple wish to publish a book featuring Sikh American voices. I am happy to announce that it has expanded into a published book and so much more.
The Sikh Love Stories Project was a seed that grew with curiosity and interest about contemporary Sikh stories of inspiration. I reflected on my own family experiences: my marriage; my role as a mother, daughter, sister, friend, and as a community member. Then I had the opportunity to review Love,InshAllah: The Secret Love Lives of American Muslim Women. In writing the review for this wonderful collection, I was curious about love between Sikh American women and men, but also in all realms of a Sikh’s life. This led to some key questions: How do Sikh Americans define and experience love? Is the romantic Sikh American love story expanding and changing? What Sikh love stories exist beyond the romantic realm? How does a Sikh American activist sustain love for a world that does not see love as the highest order? We asked Sikh American women these questions, and the project received numerous submissions which has resulted in the book, Her Name Is Kaur: Sikh American Women Write About Love, Courage, and Faith published by She Writes Press in April 2014, and our online Sikh American Love Stories collection.
Sikh American women—well, they are Kaurs: Sikh women, daughters of the Sikh Gurus, who wished Kaurs to be unfettered by current limitations of gender, class, or patriarchy. They derive inspiration from the unconditional love and faith the Sikh Gurus demonstrated throughout Sikh history, and they set out to achieve that same love and faith in today’s world. We hope the website features open up deeper questions amongst Sikh American women in deepening how we understand and love one another. Additionally, Sikh American men play a critical role in supporting Sikh American women in the United States. Fathers, brothers, husbands, sons, and community friends should be and often are pillars of grounding, clarity, unconditional support, and encouragement to move forward towards realizing gender equality in the Sikh American community.
We are now asking Sikh American men similar questions and we are equally excited about the responses. As Sikhs, we are the recipients of an unshakable legacy of love through our spiritual history, our heritage, our families, and now ourselves. This spiritual legacy of love defines who we are at a cellular level.
Sikh American love is not limited to the Sikh community. It is meant to strengthen the community from within, so we are clear and ever-ready to join other communities in maintaining love as the highest order.
I am a creative writer and mentor, and this has been a passion project that has deepened and widened my heart. In working with other Sikh American women, men, and the broader community for the Sikh Love Stories Project, I realize that our greatest capacity for love and courage lives in those magical spaces in-between people. That space is where we fasten ourselves to one another through trust and faith. It is that space where we weave a deeper understanding and support for one another. It is also that space where we pause to take care of ourselves and acknowledge that we are ourselves are an important part of the equation in relationship to our loved ones. It is also that space where we realize our greatest capacity as architects and developers of love, and specifically in this case – Sikh love.
Recognizing and acknowledging that infinite light in another human being, all human beings, has been tremendous. This is where I want to be.
To learn more about our journey to date, please see the ABOUT page.
We are excited and proud to feature the following for our website launch:
- An introduction to our editorial team.
- The first feature on an author from the forthcoming print collection: Her Name is Kaur: Sikh American Women Write About Love, Courage, and Faith – Sargun Kaur.
- The first feature online story – My Grandmother’s Courage in Faith, by Deep Kaur Jodhka.
- Our first feature interview with Sikh American women who are leaving a deep impact on the world through their presence and purpose. We debut with a conversation with visual artist Rupy Cheema Tut.
If you’d like to participate in outreach, community discussions, or website features, please email us at sikh.lovestories[at]gmail.com.