An assignment OnSikhism and their implication on social welfare and spiritual welfare : Submitted to: Prof. Pooja Mam : Submitted By: Patel Dharmaja MBA 4thSemester E.No : 04
What is Sikhism? WaheGuru Ji Ka Khalsa, WaheGuru Ji Ki Fateh.Sikhism is barely 500 hundreds years old but with over 20 million Sikhs around the world, is thefifth largest world religion. Sikhism was founded by Guru Nanak Dev Ji (left), the first Guru inthe 15th century in the Punjab (the land of 5 rivers). Following partition in 1947, Punjab is nowdivided between Pakistan and the northern Indian state of Punjab.The word Guru is composed of Gu meaning darkness and Ru meaning Light. In Sikhismtherefore Guru is the "Light that dispels all darkness" and Guru Nanak Dev Ji was theEmbodiment of Divine Light.Sikhism is based on compassion; service; equality between males, females and all religions andencourages an honest, truthful living with a rejection of idol worship, the caste system, ritualismand superstitions. In Sikhism, heaven and hell are states of mind represented by joy and sorrow,bliss and agony or light and darkness.Sikhism is a distinct religion and shouldnt be viewed as linked to either Islam or Hinduism.Guru Nanak Dev Ji said "I am neither a Hindu nor a Muslim, I am a human being".Guru Nanak Dev Ji spread a simple message of Ek Onkar, we are all one, created by the oneCreator of all Creation. He said that there is one God and the name of God is Sat Nam (truth). Toshow its importance, Ek Onkar is the first line at the head of all gurbani and forms the first lineof the Mool Mantar which begins the Guru Granth Sahib Ji.Sikhism is a monotheistic faith. Sikhism recognizes God as One and highest of all, who is notsubject to time, form, space, birth or death. Sikhism states that you do not have to fast, performrituals or go to pilgrimages in order to be one with God, all you have to do is have love towardsGod and live an honest life. Sikhism promotes equality between all man and woman. Sikhs arethe members of Sikh religion.Sikhism is one of the world’s simplest faiths, yet very strong discipline. The results produced bySikhism have been very powerful. Sikhism helps one to devote his/her life to God and attainsalvation by living a lifestyle that keeps one focused in life. Sikhism lifestyle includes getting ridof lust, anger, greed, emotional attachment and ego and living a moral, honest and peacefullife while sharing with others and helping the ones in need. In order to be one with God, we haveto purify ourselves and become like Him, Sikhs lifestyle helps one to be like and be one withGod.Sikhs are known as follower of Sikh Gurus and members of the Sikh religion. Literallytranslated, Sikh means disciple or student. In the Sikh faith, the word Sikh means someone whostrives to learn about God, is a seeker of God and truth, and someone who follows Guru’steachings to achieve such goals.
Sikhs had ten Gurus in succession and the tenth Guru compiled all the teachings in a holyscripture called Guru Granth Sahib Ji. The revered scripture presides over as the eleventh Guruof Sikhs. Guru Granth Sahib Ji has 1430 pages and each and every page gives amazinginformation about God and how to be one with Him.Guru Nanak Dev Jis followers were the Sikhs (the seekers of truth) and came from differentcommunities and castes. Guru Nanak Dev Ji taught the Sikhs to bow only before God and that inorder to experience God within themselves they should:By following this path, a Sikh can achieve liberation by becoming gur-mukh (God centred)instead of being mun-mukh (self centred). Guru Nanak Dev Ji Guru Angad Dev Ji Guru Amar Das Ji Guru Ram Das Ji Guru Arjan Dev Ji Guru Har Gobind Ji Guru Har Rai Ji Guru Har Krishan Ji Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji Guru Gobind Singh Ji Guru Granth Sahib Ji
There have been 10 human Gurus in the Sikh religion, each making a distinguished contributionto the development of the religion. Whilst Sikhs hold the Gurus in high regard they are notworshipped; Sikhs only worship one God "Ek Onkar".The 10th and last human Guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji transformed the Sikhs into the Khalsa.Guru Gobind Singh Ji baptised five brave men, the "Panj Pyarey" (five beloved ones) whoheeded his call for sacrifice. Guru Gobind Singh Ji gave the name "Singh" for men and "Kaur"for women and ordered everyone in the Khalsa to obverse the five "Ks". Kesh Uncut hair and beard. Symbolises acceptance of Gods will. Kangha A small wooden comb to groom the hair. Karhha An iron or steel bracelet to be worn on the right hand. Kirpan Small sword 9 inches long, symbolises courage, strength and kindness. Kaccha Shorts, symbolises modesty and morality.Prohibitions in SikhismFurther information: Prohibitions in Sikhism and Diet in Sikhism.There are a number of religiousprohibitions in Sikhism. 1. Cutting hair: Cutting hair is strictly forbidden in Sikhism. Sikhs are required to keep unshorn hair. 2. Intoxication: Consumption of alcohol, drugs, tobacco, and other intoxicants is not allowed. Intoxicants are strictly forbidden for a Sikh. However the Nihangs of Punjab take an infusion of cannabis to assist meditation. 3. Adultery: In Sikhism, the spouses must be physically and mentally faithful to one another.
4. Blind spirituality: Superstitions and rituals should not be observed or followed, including pilgrimages, fasting and ritual purification; circumcision; idols & grave worship; compulsory wearing of the veil for women; etc. 5. Material obsession: Obsession with material wealth is not encouraged in Sikhism. 6. Sacrifice of creatures: The practice of sati (widows throwing themselves on the funeral pyre of their husbands), ritual animal sacrifice to celebrate holy occasions, etc. are forbidden. 7. Non-family-oriented living: A Sikh is encouraged not to live as a recluse, beggar, yogi, monastic (monk/nun) or celibate. Sikhs are to live as saint-soldiers. 8. Worthless talk: Bragging, lying, slander, "back-stabbing", etc. are not permitted. The Guru Granth Sahib tells the Sikh, "Your mouth has not stopped slandering and gossiping about others. Your service is useless and fruitless." 9. Priestly class: Sikhism does not have priests, they were abolished by Guru Gobind Singh (the 10th Guru of Sikhism). The only position he left was a Granthi to look after the Guru Granth Sahib, any Sikh is free to become Granthi or read from the Guru Granth Sahib. 10. Eating meat killed in a ritualistic manner (Kutha meat): Sikhs are strictly prohibited from eating meat from animals slaughtered in a religiously prescribed manner (such as dhabihah or shechita, known as Kutha meat, when the animal is killed by exsanguination via throat-cutting), or any meat where langar is served. The meat eaten by Sikhs is known as Jhatka meat. 11. Having extramarital sexual relations.Major Principles of Sikhism Believe in only One Almighty God. Salvation can only be attained by meditating on God. All human races are equal. Women have equal status and equal rights. Keep diet simple and vegetarian. Not to cut hair. Not to believe in superstitions.Guru: Guru is one with God and delivers the message of God.Rituals: The Sikh religion rejects all rituals, superstitions and routine practices like fasting andpilgrimage, animal sacrifice, omens and austerities.Rights: Sikh religion instructs that all humans are equal. 1. Equality among Humans: Sikhism instructs to consider all human races equal. No one is superior or inferior. 2. Equality of Men and Women: Sikhism instructs to consider all men and women equal. Women have equal status as men.
Lifestyle: Sikh Gurus themselves lived a family and social life and showed everyone how onecan be close to God while living a family life. Sikh Guru created a lifestyle for Sikhs. Sikhs thatfollow this lifestyle are less likely to deviate from the path to God. Sikh lifestyle includes: 1. Naam Japna (Meditation): A Sikh is to engage in a daily practice of meditation by reciting and chanting of God’s Name. Sikhism instructs that Salvation can only be attained by meditating on One God. Daily recitation also keeps Sikhs focused in life. 2. Kirat Karni (Honest Lifestyle): To live honestly and earn by ones physical and mental effort while accepting Gods gifts and blessings. A Sikh should never engage in dishonest means of making money. 3. Vand Chakna (Sharing): The Sikhs are asked to share their wealth within the community and outside by practicing charity (Daan). Sikhism instructs to “Share and consume together”. 4. Seva (Selfless Service): It is the duty of every Sikh to engage in Seva whenever there is a possibility. A Sikh can volunteer at Gurdwara Sahib; community centre; senior living centers; care centers, major world disasters, etc. Seva is important to Sikhs because it helps build a better community and also keeps the Sikhs humble by suppressing ego. 5. Five Vices: A Sikh needs to overcome five vices of Lust, Anger, Greed, Emotional Attachment and Ego. 6. Five Traits: A Sikh need to develop and harness positive human qualities which lead the soul closer to God. These five qualities are: Truth, Compassion, Contentment, Humble, and Love. 7. Five Verses: Reading 5 verses from Sikh scriptures everyday keeps one in focus towards God. 8. Five Ks: Wearing 5 Ks (Five Articles of Faith) Uncut Hair, Comb, Bracelet, Sacred Knife and Sacred Shorts keeps one focused in life. 9. Alcohol and Drugs: Consuming alcohol, smoke and drugs is an obstruction in meeting God. 10. Food: A Sikh should eat simple and vegetarian food.Life after Death: Sikhism has a belief in reincarnation. Heaven and hell do exist. Your gooddeeds will be rewarded in heaven and bad deed will be punished in hell, you will take birth againand again until you attain salvation by becoming One with God.Purpose of Life: Sikhism instructs that our life has a purpose and a goal. It offers an opportunityfor self and God realization. Moreover man is responsible for his own actions. He cannot claimimmunity from the results of his actions. He must therefore be very vigilant in what he does. Thegoal of human life to merge with God is accomplished by meditation on God and performance ofacts of service and charity. Sikhism emphasizes the path of devotion. It also lays stress on theneed for earning Gods Grace in order to reach the spiritual goal.
Sikh festivals/eventsTechnically, there are no festivals in Sikhism. However, the events mostly centred around thelives of the Gurus and Sikh martyrs are commemorated. The SGPC, the Sikh organisation incharge of upkeep of the historical gurdwaras of Punjab, organises celebrations based on the newNanakshahi calendar. This calendar is highly controversial among Sikhs and is not universallyaccepted. Sikh festivals include the following: Gurpurabs are celebrations or commemorations based on the lives of the Sikh gurus. They tend to be either birthdays or celebrations of Sikh martyrdom. All ten Gurus have Gurpurabs on the Nanakshahi calendar, but it is Guru Nanak Dev and Guru Gobind Singh who have a gurpurab that is widely celebrated in Gurdwaras and Sikh homes. The martyrdoms are also known as a shaheedi Gurpurabs, which mark the martyrdom anniversary of Guru Arjan Dev and Guru Tegh Bahadur. Since 2011 the Gurpurab of Guru Har Rai Sahib (March 14) has been celebrated as Sikh Vatavaran Diswas (Sikh Environment Day). Guru Har Rai was the seventh guru, known as a gentle guru man who cared for animals and the environment. The day is marked by worldwide events, including tree plantings, rubbish clearances and celebrations of the natural world.  Visakhi occurs on 13 April. Sikhs celebrate it because on this day which fell on 30 March 1699, the tenth Guru, Gobind Singh, inaugurated the Khalsa, the 11th body of Guru Granth Sahib and leader of Sikhs till eternity. Bandi Chhor celebrates Guru Hargobinds release from the Gwalior Fort, with several innocent Hindu kings who were also imprisoned by Jahangir, on 26 October 1619. This day usually commemorated on the same day of Hindu festival of Diwali. Hola Mohalla occurs the day after Holi and is when the Khalsa gather at Anandpur and display their individual and team warrior skills, including fighting and riding.