Police call it an act of domestic terrorism after a man opens fire on a Wisconsin Temple, a place where many of the Sikh faith go to pray.
Amrita Mahapatra of Lincoln says the incident brings back memories of another attack. "9/11 was a big tragedy for us Americans. Even though almost 11 years have passed, the memory can become back in a second. And when I was watching the news that time came back to me," said Mahapatra.
Sikhism is the fifth-largest religion in the world. Its followers often wear turbans and do not cut their beards, leading them to sometimes be mistaken for Muslims. Sikhs have been the victims of misdirected hate crimes and prejudice as a result of the 9/11 attacks, according to the Sikh Coalition.
Ravinder Deogun has also been keeping a close eye on TV. coverage of the shootings. Deogun and her husband, Jidender, regularly lead services for Lincoln's Sikh community which includes about a dozen residents. Worship typically takes place in private homes.
The Mahapatra home's place of worship includes important symbols of different religions including Christian, Jewish, Hindu and other faiths. Mahapatra says she has set up her prayer room this way so that all who visit will feel free to express their beliefs.
Jidender Deogun wants to educate others about the Sikh philosophy of peace, inclusion and unity by diversity. "Sikh religion believes that you can be saved in any religion. You can come from any religion join in the prayers and in the communion also," said Deogun.
Even though it's still unclear if the shooter specifically targeted members of the Sikh faith, Mahapatra says that she believes many people fight battles in the name of religion that have nothing to do with faith." It's not religion-related, it's crime related, it's ignorance," said Mahapatra.
Amrita's husband, Sachi, is of the Hindu faith but he shares his wife's perspective when it comes to the topic of religion.
"It's a very sad thing because people don't understand each others religions and concepts. If you look at the basic concepts and teachings of religion, every religion you look at the views are similar, basically saying to live life as a normal, good, human being." said Sachi Mahapatra
Amrita Mahapatra says education is part of her religious practice, she adds that the word "Sihk" comes from a Sanskrit term meaning "disciple" or "student."
The Lincoln group is fighting back against acts of violence with education. They plan to hold a conference within the next few weeks.