sikhism



SIKHISM

Sikhism is a Religion of uniqueness. It has beliefs from two other religions; Hinduism and Islam (Borak 53). This religion is very scarce in the United States. The main area for Sikhs is in the Northwest India (Borak 53). I had never heard of this religion before, so that is the main reason why I chose to study this religion. I have found it very interesting and different. The Sikhs have many unique qualities.

Sikhism dates back to a long time ago. Making it more modern, it was introduced near the closing of the 15th Century (Borak 53). Guru Nanak Dev originated it, now making it a minority group. The Sikhs are found generally around northwest India, or Punjab, but can also be found anywhere in the world (Borak 53).

Sikhism has a very rare formation. This religion is a mixture of two other religions, known as Hinduism and Islam. This joining together is known as syncretism (Hopfe 188). The Hindus and Islams began to mix and some thought of joining the two together. Not everyone agreed so they decided to make a new religion with practices from both religions while still keeping Hinduism and Islam separate religions (Borak 54). From the Hindus, the reincarnation of Jesus was put into practice for this newly accepted religion and also they kept “The True Name” sacred because He can do anything. One true God is used also as a practice, coming from the Islam beliefs (Hopfe 188). Its originality helps make this religion special in its own unique way.

The Sikhs have many of their own beliefs but also the ones coming from Hinduism and Islam. The opening lines in their Holy Book, or Guru Granith Sahib, state “There is one supreme eternal reality; the truth; immanent in all things; creator of all things; immanent in creation. With out fear and without hatred; not subject to time; beyond birth and death; self revealing”(Philosophy). This statement summarizes their basic teachings, also adding equality to their beliefs (Hopfe 198). They believe every human is of the same sex even though chastity is not allowed. Women are equal to all men. Sikhs do not believe in burning women, women wearing veils, or marriages to widows. There is no separation by creed, color, race, or sex (Philosophy). All people are equal.

Sikhs believe to worship in temples known as Gurdwaras, also meaning Gateway to the Guru. Daily attachment to God helps you become closer to Him, believes Narm Marg (Philosophy). Also, faith grows within the community while worshipping at the Gurdwaras.(Richards, 198) Serving others is their center of worship (Richards 198).

Among the Sikhs are three other religions, The Udasis, Sahajdharis, and the Singhs. The Udasis is an order of Holy Men who follow the same practices as Buddhist, Hindus, and Jainism. They are celibate and wear a yellow coarse garment like Buddhist monks or go naked like Jain monks. They have one possession, a begging bowl and they are also poorly shaven (Hopfe 180). On the other hand, Sahajdaris are very reasonable and very clean- people. They reject the militancy of the Sikhs (Hopfe 192). The Singhs are just a break off of the Sikhs.


Sikhs believe in God but they worship by Gurus (Richards 198). Guru means leader (Hopfe 189). They also believe in Guru Granith Sahib and other writing by the ten Gurus. They do not believe in any other religion, though (Richards 198). God is the creator, maintainer, and distructer who can not take human form (Philosophy). He appears only in spirit by believing and can not appear in human (Richards 198). Their five cardinal vices are Kam, or lust, Krodah, or anger, Lobh, or greed, Moh, or wordly attachment, and Ahankar, or pride (Philosophy). Some of their beliefs and vices are the same as Catholics.

Sikhism doesn’t really have any hierarchy that I could find but they do have certain positions. There are ten Gurus who would serve as our priest do, but now they worship what the Gurus taught and by the Scripture (Hopfe 189). Gurus were the leaders. (See pages seven for a listing of the ten Gurus.) Their first Guru who was chosen April 5, 1469, the day Sikhism formed was Guru Nanak, and the last Guru was Gobind Singh Dev from