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Opposition to interfaith marriage is strong in many of Canada’s minority religious communities.
In researching the large Sikh diaspora population in Britain, Kang discovered that, like in Canada, many Sikh parents do not approve of their children marrying outside their faith or ethnicity.
Indeed, senior Sikh leaders at the Akal Takht in India declared their opposition to all interfaith marriage in 2007.
And some Sikh militants in Britain have been actively protesting and disrupting interfaith weddings at gurdwaras.
But when it comes to marriage and children, many often end up wedding someone of the same background.
Even though Sahukhan doesn’t think “love conquers all” in regard to the special challenges of inter-religious marriage, he believes that with honest communication, many couples can make a good go of an interfaith relationship.
I decided to come here because unfortunately I don't really have any Punjabi and/or Sikh friends other than him and his sister that could help me have a better understanding of the culture.
I have a lot of respect for the things that he believes in, even if they don't always make sense to me.
Kang, who moved to Canada five years ago after teaching in India and England, says many of B.
Nevertheless, Kang maintains Sikh leaders in India don’t have the “authority” to force such a rigid theology on all Sikhs.
For his part, Sahukhan finds many couples in Metro Vancouver enjoy dating people of different ethnicities and spiritual world views, including atheism.
Vancouver specialists in interfaith relationships believe there are two main reasons for the decreasing approval ratings Canadians are giving to different religions and to interfaith marriages.
One is that many Canadians have developed exaggerated perceptions that followers of religions like Islam and Sikhism are prone to violence or repression.