Celebrate the 16th century roots of the democratic spirit


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 Listen to this, from the NYTimes:

 "All faiths are welcome to eat a free lunch daily at the Golden Temple, the holiest shrine for Sikhs, in Amritsar, India."

And this might challenge your assumptions about where notions of equality started: 

"Guru Amar Das created the community kitchen during his time as the third Sikh guru in the 16th century. Its purpose, he said, was to place all of humanity on the same plane."

And it goes on today:

 "Soupy lentils, three and a third tons of them, bubble away in vast cauldrons, stirred by bearded, barefoot men wielding wooden spoons the size of canoe paddles. The pungent, savory bite wafting through the air comes from 1,700 pounds of onions and 132 pounds of garlic, sprinkled with 330 pounds of fiery red chilies.  It is lunchtime at what may be the world?s largest free eatery, the langar, or community kitchen at this city?s glimmering Golden Temple...Thousands of volunteers have scrubbed the floors, chopped onions, shelled peas and peeled garlic."

 "Anyone can eat for free here, and many, many people do...On a weekday, about 80,000 come...served by volunteers who embody India?s religious and ethnic mosaic."

Yes, I am sure there are shadows stories to tell about this, but still it seems something special to celebrate.  For the whole story and pictures, follow the link:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/30/world/asia/30india.html?_r=1&hp.

 

 

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