A Primary Resource (APR) to Living Religions” is one of the CD’s in the I-Seek Living Religions Series. It is a unique product aimed specifically at those who want to understand World Faiths in simple language. As such it is particularly suited to school children and designed to support any Agreed Religious Education Syllabus. It covers Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism and Humanism.
The CD contains information on places of worship, customs, rituals, special books, festivals and many more subjects vital to a complete introduction to each of these religions. Written by practising Primary School teachers and RE Co-ordinators, the language of the CD is child friendly, ensuring that older pupils can conduct research without the support of an adult. The CD comes complete with a selection of printable worksheets and most of the text and graphics are freely printable for educational use.
Unlike many similar products, this CD neither evangelises nor criticises any particular religion. It does not contain judgements on whether aspects of any religion are ‘good’ or ‘bad’. Instead, it tries to portray what the adherents of each religion believe and do so as to give a neutral picture.
The general design of the product is intended to be attractive to pupils, including the use of appropriate fonts. This includes how you navigate around the CD. There are several ways of doing this, each of which may be suitable for pupils of different abilities:
- You can click on buttons, highlighted words or other objects on a page;
- You can use navigation buttons (Next, Previous, Up) on the browser navigation bar . There is also a ‘History’ pop-up on that bar which allows you to retrace your steps;;
- Another pop-up menu gives access to two indices: one gives direct access to all the topics on the CD; The other gives access to all images on the CD;
- There are fantastic video, sound, and picture libraries.
The Sikh Holy Book (The Guru Granth Sahib or Adi Granth) is unusual in that it was written by the founders of Sikhism and has not altered substantially from the original of 1604 AD. It contains 1430 pages and contains the works of Sikhs and non-Sikhs. There are 6 main translations of the Granth Sahib in English and provides a universal message of personal liberation and salvation.
Ik Onkaar (There is One God)
Nam Japo (Devoutly repeat the divine name and seek the inner sound)
Kirat Karo (Live Honestly and Justly)
Vand Chakko (Share your possessions with all humankind)
Raj Kare Ga Khalsa (The righteous will prevail in the end)
Places of Worship
Gurdwara (The abode of the Holy Book). Sikhs were instructed to treat their Holy Book as their living Guru. There are about 500 Gurdwaras in the UK and a similar number in the US and Canada.
Sikh culture is almost independent of their place of residence. This is because they have a common background, share the same ancestral past, speak a common language (Punjabi), identify with a common set of core vales and beliefs, wear the same symbols, live in similar family structure, and have a similar psyche. Sikh culture and Identity is very strong and many Sikhs believe that one day all the people of the world will see the logic and rationale for their way of belief and life.
Sikhism was, in essence, founded by Guru Nanak Dev. The concept of a living teacher was to become an important cornorstone of Sikhism.
The Punjab is the melting pot of many races, religions and cultures. It housed some of the earliest civilisations on earth, and has seen many invasions, battles and wars. These include: the Aryan invasions which started around 1500 BCE; invasion by the Persian King Darius and the occupation in 516 BCE by the Persians under King Gustasp; the conquering of the Persians by Alexander the Great and his entry into the Punjab in 321 BCE; and around 711 CE, the Muslims attacked and occupied much of the Punjab.
The main festivals and special times of Sikhism relate to the following: Gurpurb, Basiakhi, Diwali, Hola Mohalla, Maghi, Births, Deaths, Baptism and Tying of the Turban
Welcome to Gurdwara (the name given to the Sikh's place of worship). The term Gurdwara literally means "the door" or "the gateway to the Guru". It is a place where the Guru Granth Sahib (the Sikh holy Scripture) is present. It is open to every one regardless of age, sex, caste, or creed and is the centre for congregational worship in Sikhism. It also plays a socioeconomic role in the Sikh community; attached to every Gurdwara is a free kitchen where the Langar is prepared and served.
The place of women in Sikhism (the Religion) is a subject of very little discussion. This is because women have, without any condition or reservation (related to either form or function), exactly the same rights as men. The Guru Granth Sahib provides the blueprint for women's rights - it makes clear that equal rights of women are a fundamental part of Sikh doctrine.
A glimpse into the lives and culture of the people of Punjab can be got through the folk idiom of Punjab. There is a great repertoire of music, right from the time of birth to death. Culturally Punjab can be divided into three regions, Malwa, Majha and Doaba. Today Malwa represents the true spirit of Punjabi folk traditions. The Punjabi fold idiom is so rich, so varied and so very versatile. It is a culture of generous, vast, big-hearted people which is devoid of any fanaticism and religious narrow mindedness of ideology.
Religious Organisations and Educationalists Praise 'Living Religion Series'
"The only resource on religion you'll ever need" - Andrew Garner, Multimedia
."..no good RE Department or Resource Centre should be without these CDs" - Dave Symmons, RE Today