Sikhs invite all to ‘become one with God’

BOTHELL — The rooms were filled with songs.

Downstairs, mothers adjusted small girls’ head scarves. In the kitchen, people lined up to fill plates with food from steaming aluminum pans.

In another room, families sat on the floor to eat along rugs set in rows parallel to the walls — except for the oldest guests, who sat on benches, nodding to greet each person who entered.

Upstairs, people prayed. They made an offering of small bills at the front of the room. They bowed, head down, arms stretched forward. Children watched their parents for guidance. People talked softly.

Sunday was Vaisakhi Day, an annual sacred celebration for the Sikhs. Hundreds of people went to the Sikh Centre of Seattle in Bothell, just north of where I-405 crosses the Bothell-Everett Highway. Children played outside. People hugged and ate.

“This is a pure place of God. This is a temple. Every wish is fulfilled here,” center spokesman Harjinder Sandhawalia said.

Everyone is welcome, Vice President Manmohan Dhillon said. The kitchen is open around-the-clock, he said.

“The food is always good, you know,” he said.

Vaisakhi Day celebrates a message given to the Sikhs in 1699, temple president Jaswinder Singh said.

The message was to be compassionate above all, he said. The people were told that compassion leads to faith and courage.

“They can become one with God,” he said. “That was a special message.”

The Sikhs are a people of peace, Dhillon said. Men and women are equal.

Children are taught classes at the center in the native language, Punjabi.

Jasmine Banga, 15, of Bothell, came to Vaisakhi Day with her mother and sisters. She and her friend Simran Daind, 13, knew almost everyone there, they said.

“It’s just really fun coming and spending time with friends and family,” Banga said. “You get to listen to the prayers and everything. It’s a big thing, and you get to be a part of it. It feels good to be part of a big family.”

Each Sikh temple has its own way of celebrating Vaisakhi Day, Daind said. Each way is accepted.

Her friend nodded in agreement. “People should come and watch and see how everything’s done,” Banga said.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449;

Sikh Centre

Sikh Centre of Seattle in Bothell, 20412 Bothell-Everett Highway. 425-487-4878,, Construction on a large-scale addition is almost complete.

More in Local News

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s top images by staff photographers and others.

This tale goes full circle

Courthouse courier’s stolen bicycle is recovered with the help of a marshal.

Pair now face federal charges in pot shop heist

They are being prosecuted on robbery, drugs and weapons violations.

R U testing RUC?

The state has started its pilot of pay-per-mile taxes.

‘They understand us’: Explorer Middle students dig ‘The Club’

The Boys & Girls Club provides a growing on-site, after-school program in south Everett.

Driver hospitalized after I-5 rollover crash near Arlington

A medical problem is believed to have caused the accident.

Lynnwood plans $12M in sewer improvements

The city wants to be ready for an anticipated population boom around the mall and light rail.

Man struck, killed by Everett Transit bus Friday night

He was in the roadway between 75th Street SE and Beverly Boulevard when he was hit, police said.

Mom gives her $25,000 windfall to Marysville high schools

Among the beneficiaries is the drama club, which gets much-needed audio equipment.

Most Read