Leeds man teaches thousands of TiKTok users about Sikh culture and religion
A man from Leeds has gained a huge following on TikTok after using the platform to teach people about the Sikh religion and its culture.
Sunny Osahn, from Alwoodley, first joined the platform to explore and share his voiceover work but soon found a niche explaining the religion to his curious followers.
Videos about his long hair and his wearing of a turban have been viewed by millions of people, and he takes the time to create video responses for people who ask him questions about Sikhism.
Sunny, 37, has now clocked up more than 85,000 followers on the social media platform and says he has had a positive response from people across the world, who are eager to learn about other cultures.The father-of-two said: “There can be racism towards people who look like I do - who wear a turban and are visibly different.
“I have two young sons with beautiful, long hair that we’ve never cut as part of our faith and even at their age, they have had incidents of people laughing at them and calling them a girl.
“I would say 99.9 per cent of the global audience don’t know what a Sikh is or why we wear turbans.
“So many people have been astonished to find out many of us have really long hair, for example.
"One of the reasons I joined TikTok was because I was seeing some fascinating content, made by people who are my age, who were sharing their knowledge.
“There's a huge lack of teaching about different cultures in our schools and it is not covered in the kind of depth that it should be.
“On TikTok, there are so many engaged users who are embracing learning about the different people who are on this earth. I think people often overlook this teaching element of the platform.
“The videos are about raising awareness about who we are and demystifying why we wear our turbans.”
Sunny receives hundreds of comments thanking him for his videos every day and has even helped people across the world.
The aspiring voice actor said: “People feel open and able to ask me questions, and I embrace that.
“A lot of my videos are about sharing the ideas of Sikhism and that everybody is equal no matter what race, gender, skin colour or any of these things.
"People are grateful for the opportunity to learn about this and tell me so.
“One care worker in America recently commented to thank me because my video where I showed how to tie a turban helped her to retie an elderly and sick patient’s turban.
“He and his family were all incredibly grateful.
“That kind of message is beautiful - that I was able to indirectly help a person across the planet using TikTok is just wonderful.”
Sunny’s two children, aged five and seven, have been very impressed by their dad’s TikTok efforts and have even featured on the page themselves.
But it is not just them who have felt the benefits of Sunny’s educational community, Sunny too has appreciated the love and positivity shown to him by his followers.
He said: “Both of my kids are really enjoying the videos and they're learning as well, so it's pretty cool.
“I embrace their creativity so I have shared some of my son’s poetry on there and people came back with such beautiful comments.
“He was amazed and I was just so happy seeing the smile on his face.
“All these people with all these different cultures and beliefs came together to post such heartfelt comments.”
He added: “Some of the responses to my videos have just been ‘wow, you have such beautiful hair’ or about loving my voice and other positive things.
“In all my 37 years living in Leeds, I have never had these comments. I am quite a quiet guy and a bit of an introvert so I don’t go out of my way to show my hair.
“It’s been very different and interesting.
“I am just trying to put positivity out into the world.
“We're all human beings, we're all on this planet together and people have embraced that and want to learn about one another.”
You can follow Sunny on TikTok @SunnyOsahn