Sikhism - Religion in India

Sikhism: It is the youngest religion among the world which was founded in 15th century by Guru Nanak Dev Ji. The word ‘Sikh’ is originated from Punjabi which means disciple.  This religion was founded in Punjab region. Guru Nanak Dev Ji was the first guru of 15th century in Punjab region of India. Sikhism believes in the existence of only one God and preaches truthful living, honesty, equality to mankind, social justice, humbleness, social tolerance to other religions.

The sacred script of Sikhism is Guru Granth Sahib which has all the preaching’s of Guru Nanak and the 10 Gurus who followed later.  Guru Nanak was born in the year 1469. He spread the message of love and tolerance to all which has life on earth. The guru criticised the inhuman and rigid rituals of Hinduism and Muslims. Some of the rigid rituals that are criticised by Sikhism are sati system widow remarriage and many more. Sikhism was influenced by Bakthi movement however Sikhism disagreed with some of the views of the Bakthi movement. Sikhism main beliefs and principles are equality, fraternity, brotherhood, universal peace and prosperity. The Gurudwara (place of worship) is not just confined to Sikhs it is open to all the communities and even the Langar (free meal to those who go to Gurudwara) is served to all communities.

Principles of Sikhism

Principles of Sikhism:

Since Sikhism believes in the existence of only one God many sources call it as Monthestic. People who follow Sikhism are expected to be kind hearted. The basic principles or the three pillars of Sikhism which are the teachings of Gurus are:

  1. Naam Japna: it means remembering God through meditation throughout the day. It says this can be done through chanting the hymns or singing the prayer of God. Singing of hymns is called as Kirthan.
  2. Kirat Karo: Doing any job with honesty, dedication and through hard work for the leading a well mannered life in the society. There are some jobs which are not allowed in Sikhism is working in Brothel house, prostitute, working in pubs,  doing gambling, astrology.
  3. Vand Chakko: This is another important pillar of Sikhism which says that sharing with others whether it can be wealth or food.  It can be through Langar, or distributing clothes for the needy, wealth for the needy in its own community or in other community.

Some other principles, concepts and beliefs in Sikhism are:

  1. Concept of one God
  2. Treat everyone equally
  3. To avoid the five sins—ego, lust, greed, anger and attachments.
  4. Shakti and Bakti
  5. Service and action
  6. To engage is selfless service.
  7. Concept of Karma
  8. Equality to women

 A person who follows Sikhism is called Sikh.  Males in the religion have ‘Singh’ along with their name while female have ‘Kaur’ along their names. Usually the Sikhs are recognised by Five Ks: ’Kesh’ they are uncut hair which is covered by turban, ‘Kara’ an steel or iron bracelet, ‘Kirpan’ a sword tucked, ‘Kachehra’ a cotton undergarment, ‘Kanga’ a small wooden comb. 

Ten Gurus of Sikhism

  1. Guru Nanak Dev Ji from 1469-1539
  2. Guru Angad Dev Ji from 1539-1552
  3. Guru Amar Das Sahib Ji from 1552-1574
  4. Guru Ram Das Sahib Ji from 1574-1581
  5. Guru Arjan Dev Ji from 1581-1606
  6. Guru Har Gobind Sahib Ji from 1606-1644
  7. Guru Har Rai Sahib Ji from 1644-1661
  8. Guru Har kishan Sahib Ji from 1661-1664
  9. Guru Tej Bahadur Sahib Ji from 1665-1675
  10. Guru Gobind Singh sahib Ji from 1675-1708