Amritsar Local Customs

  • Amritsar Local Custom
    Amritsar Local Custom
    by MikeySoft
  • Amritsar Local Custom
    Amritsar Local Custom
    by MikeySoft
  • Langar at the Golden Temple Complex
    Langar at the Golden Temple Complex
    by MikeySoft

Most Recent Local Customs in Amritsar

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    Langar (Free Lunch) in the Golden Temple Complex

    by MikeySoft Updated Jan 5, 2011

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    Langar at the Golden Temple Complex
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    Do not miss the Langar when you are at the Golden Temple.

    I wasn't sure if I should put this under Restaurants, Things to Do, or Local Customs. I decided to put it under Local Customs because it is more then a place to eat or a thing to do, it is a custom of the Sikhs to feed anyone who wants to eat. A Sikh friend also told me that I could also stay at a free hostel.

    They have several big halls where they feed anyone who wants to come. It is well orginised and when one hall is filled up, a different one that just been clean from the last Langar opens up. The line is always moving and you get plenty to eat. Thus us not to be missed when you are in Amritsar.

    You are under no obligation to help or donate but there was a donation box off to the side when you exit. No one is standing there asking you to give but I gave some US dollars for my appreciation. I used US dollars so that they would know my money was donated by a tourist. Some people were sitting in the distance and they smiled as waved at me and gave me the thumbs up after the say that I gave something.

    Please rate this tip and my others if you find them interesting, useful, or like the photos. Thanks

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    Other Customs

    by MikeySoft Written Jun 15, 2010

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    Amritsar Local Custom
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    One custom is eating the sweet past inside the Golden Temple Complex. I was offered it several times and finally tried it at the Golden Temple in the center of the pond.

    An additional custom was to drink some of the water from the pond. I know people swim it in and it may not be the most sanitary thing, but again I did it after several people was telling me about the custom. I did it incorrectly. I put some in my palm and leaned over the pond as I drank it. They told me I would not lean over the pond as I drank, Again this was at the Golden Temple in the center of the pond.

    Please rate this tip and my others if you find them interesting, useful, or like the photos. Thanks

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    Helping with the Langar (Free Lunch)

    by MikeySoft Updated Jun 15, 2010

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    preparation of Langar
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    You are under no obligation to help with the Langar (Free Lunch) but if you want, you can help with the washing or preparation of food. It is a good way to have some fun and meet the people.

    I also walked through the food preparation area and all the people were smiling very friendly to me. I took some photos and few give me there their address. They indicated I could send all the photos of their group because they knew each other.

    Please rate this tip and my others if you find them interesting, useful, or like the photos. Thanks

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    Border ceremony

    by Willettsworld Updated May 5, 2007
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    The border ceremony, on the border between India and Pakistan at Atari, is a surreal show of content. You can take a shared jeep to the border from outside the accomodation blocks within the Golden Temple (see my transport tips). You enter into a complex with concrete grandstands overlooking the border gates. The ceremony starts in the evening at about 5pm with a flurry of extra quick marching done by extremely tall beanpole like border guards with fans sprouting out of their caps towards the border gates from both sides. The entire ceremony is carefully choreographed by both sides so that it runs smoothly so it's all staged and for show but there is a great deal of campness and content towards each other. Bugals are played and the flags are lowered and then the border gates are shut and that's it - show's over! More photo's and info can be found on my Atari page.

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    Book to bed

    by Willettsworld Written May 5, 2007
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    According to Lonely Planet, the Sikh's holy book, the Guru Granth Sahib, to which they recite from during the day, is carried from the Golden Temple and put to bed overnight so I hung around to see what happened. At 10pm things started to happen so I quickly got up and rushed over and took a couple of pictures of it being put away in a room in the main causeway gatehouse (Darshani Deorhi). The book is encased in a type of canopy which has a golden roof.

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    Communial leaf bowl

    by Willettsworld Written May 5, 2007

    Whilst I was standing on the causeway in order to enter inside the Golden Temple, people were holding these communial bowls made out of plant leafs and containing so kind of food that I couldn't fathom. I'd seen these in Hindu temples all over the country and they are used to carry offerings into the temple.

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    Cover head & shoes off

    by Willettsworld Written May 5, 2007

    You have to cover your head before you enter into the complex and there are normally plenty of guys selling bandanna's for Rs10 outside. They also make good souvenirs. As is the custom in Hindu temples throughout India, you have to take off your shoes before entering into the Golden Temple complex. There is a very large underground deposit area right by the main entrance.

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    Lohri Fair 13 Jan every year

    by RAJASTHANBYCAR Written Jul 18, 2006

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    Bhangra Dance
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    Lohri marks the end of winter and for Punjabis, this is more than just a festival, as it is an example of a way of life. Lohri celebrates fertility and the spark of life. People gather round the bonfires, throw sweets, puffed rice and popcorn into the flames, sing popular songs and exchange greetings. An extremely auspicious day, Lohri marks the sun's entry in to the 'Makar Rashi' (northern hemisphere). There is puja that symbolises a prayer to Agni, the spark of life, for abundant crops and prosperity.

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    Baisakhi Fair (Apr 13)

    by RAJASTHANBYCAR Written Jul 18, 2006

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    Gaddha Dance

    Baisakhi is the first day of the New Year in the traditional Vikrami calendar and it is one of the high points of the year for Sikhs as it is anniversary of the founding of Khalsa. Baisakhi is a North Indian harvest festival, for it is the day when the reaping of the rabi (winter crop) begins. The jubilation at a bountiful harvest becomes the reason for celebration. It is one of the most popular and colourful festivals of Punjab, with fairs held at various places. Dancing men and women, on the day of Baisakhi, emerge singing and dancing from the surrounding villages carrying a portion of the first harvest of wheat proceeding to the gurudwara to make an offering.

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    Prashad

    by SmileyLeSa Written May 7, 2006

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    Part of every Sikh religious ceremony that takes place at the gurdwara is followed by the distribution of prashad. Prashad is made of flour, sugar and butter that has been blessed and is shared as a sign of community. If you make a donation to the Temple, you will be given prashad on in a plate to offer as a blessing once you enter the Golden Temple.

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    Cover Your Head

    by SmileyLeSa Written May 7, 2006

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    When you enter any Sikh Gurudwara, including the Golden Temple you must remove your shoes and cover your head. This is seen as a sign of respect. Make sure you take a scarf or handkerchief to cover your head. If you do not have one, one will be provided at the door. However, I think you would prefer to use something of your own to cover your head.

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  • Remove shoes, leave possessions, cover head

    by NEILHALLIDYA Written Nov 22, 2005

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    In order to enter the Golden Temple you need to:-

    "Remove shoes" - there are cleary visible storage areas where you hand your shoes in in return for a token.
    "Leave possessions" - again there is a storage area at the font of the temple where you hand your bags in.
    and
    "Cover your head" - either with a cheap cover purchased off one of the children outside the temple or by borrowing a cover from the small plastic bins before you walk in.

    I have no idea why you do the above. But if you follow these "rules" without making a fuss the Sikhs will behave very respectfully towards you.

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    Collecting money

    by l_joo Written Jul 30, 2004

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    Collecting money

    The very last scene of this series of custom tips is this scene where I saw two Sikhs so busy to collect all those money donated by all the devotees. Two of them collecting the money while another person spraying some kind of aromatic liquid onto those money. I appologize for my ignorance about the Sikh custom, this is just my one time experience of Amritsar. I hope you understand.

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    ...and what now?

    by l_joo Written Jul 30, 2004

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    ...and what now?

    When I come to this far, I just make sure my finger is in contact with my camera's button to snap as many photos as possible. This photo is still at first floor before going up. I saw so many Sikhs in white long robe with black turban....and what are they doing. A custom tip anyway.

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    ...and the Interior structure

    by l_joo Written Jul 30, 2004

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    and the Interior structure

    You must look at this, the interior structure and atmosphere of the Golden Temple. This photo shows the first floor and 2 more to go. I am just a tourist, therefore please do not expect me to provide detail information of what and why or how and who, just enjoy photo. There are so many websites about Sikhism, ask Google.com

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Amritsar Local Customs

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