The Dastar differs from the Arab ( imamah ) turbans and is a distinguishing feature of the Sikhs. It is worn in different colors. Opinions differ as to whether the colors have a meaning. Many kirtan singers wear a white or black dastar. White is also considered the color of wisdom and purity. Orange, Kesri ( Panjabi : ਕੇਸਰੀ) is a typical color of the Sikhs. It symbolizes sacrifice. Blue is the color of the Khalsa and Nihangs. For example, the Nishan Sahib , the flagstick at Gurdwara , is covered with an orange cloth. The dastar is tied anew every morning and covers the hair of the Sikhs, which has been uncut for spiritual reasons.
Because of this striking garment, which Sikhs perceive to wear as an expression of their faith, India is often mistakenly associated with wearing turbans. Sikhs make up less than two percent of the population of India, although not everyone who wears a turban has to belong to the Sikh religion . In addition, the Kesdhari Sikhs, i.e. Sikhs who do not cut their hair and have not yet been baptized, and the baptized Sikhs, the Amritdharis, wear a turban.
For Amritdharis (or Khalsa), wearing the five kakar is compulsory. The dastar is not one of the five symbols of faith. The Hinduism , one of the world's great religions, however, does not require wearing a Pagris . Hinduism is fundamentally different from monotheistic Sikhism, which rejects the Indian caste system as well as gods and planetary rituals.
There is no set point in time when a Sikh boy wears a dastar. Usually he starts wearing it when he is able to wrap it himself. There are Sikhs who wear a dastar in gurdwara, but before and after again a patka. A new custom has slowly spread since the 1980s. At the Dastar Bandi celebration ( Punjabi :ਦਸਤਾਰ ਬੰਦੀ) in Gurdwara the Sikh boy is solemnly wrapped in a dastar. In India, Dastar Bandi is rarely used, that is, it is a family affair that is handled differently. In the diaspora , for example in the USA, England and Thailand, an everyday activity is even hyped up as a rite of passage for a male Sikh into the adult religious community, which it is not. According to the Sikh Rehat, the only Sikhist initiation ritual for both sexes is Maryada Amrit Sanchar . For male Amritdhari (or Khalsa) wearing the Dastar is compulsory.
Wife and Dastar
The headgear of female Sikhs, a light cloth, is called a chunni or dupatta . So far, only a minority of Sikh women also wear dastars, but the trend is increasing. For example, in England there are women- only Ragi Jatha , where all women and girls wear a Dastar.
Problems and solutions
The Dastar has been and is still hotly debated in recent years. In Western countries, for example, the question arises whether the wearing of religious symbols in public facilities should remain or should be prohibited.
In the UK , most of the Sikhs live in Europe. Here it was decided that a Sikh does not have to wear a motorcycle helmet because of his turban. It was also proposed to develop bullet-proof turbans for police officers who profess Sikhism. New uniform standards have been published in the US Army, according to which men may wear turbans and women may wear a hijab on duty according to their religious beliefs.
- German Information Center Sikh Religion
- The Turban Victory , compiled by Sydney Bidwell
- Turban (Dastar) wrap (photo series)
- Videos show how to tie different Sikh turbans
- Example from Thailand: Dastar Bandi Ceremony (Turban Tying)
- Example from the USA: Dastar Bandi
- Sikh Rehat Maryada in English (English)
- US military is now allowed to wear turbans and hijab (accessed February 15, 2017)