Sikhism is a major world religion and it all started in the 15th century in a place in Northern India known as the Punjab. Sikhism is the 5th largest religion in the world and there are over 30 million Sikhs worldwide. Sikhism is a monotheistic religion (they only worship one God).
- Sikhism was founded in the 15th century in Northern India (The Punjab) by a man known as Guru Nanak.
- At the age of 30, Guru Nanak had a spiritual experience at the river Bein. Nanak was spoken to by God after being carried up into the divine court. God called for him to be a Guru. For the next 20 years, Nanak traveled through India visiting all the holy places of Hinduism and Islam. Talking to religious leaders. Over time, Nanak gathered a number of disciples.
- The Langar is the "Guru's kitchen" or eating area found in the Gurdwara (Sikh place of worship). This is where everyone sits on the floor (which symbolises that everyone is on the same level as each other). Everyone is given an equal amount of food and it is always vegetarian. Also, everyone is invited (regardless of their religion).
The Five Ks
- Disciple - Follower of a particular teacher
- Eternal - Lasting forever
- Guru - Religious teacher
- Guru Granth Sahib - Sikh holy book
- Khanda - Two-edged sword
- Punjabi - Language spoken by most Sikh's
- Waheguru - Sikh name for God
- Satnam - Sikh name for God
- The Mool Mantar is a verse of words that is repeated at the beginning of every section of the Guru Granth Sahib (Sikh Holy Book). Here are some of the phrases that are repeated in the Mool Mantar:
- Ik Onkar - There is only 1 God
- Sat Nam - Eternal Truth is God's name
- Karta Purakh - God is the creator
- Nir Bhau - God is without fear
- Nir Vair - God is without hate
- Akal Murat - Immortal; without form
- Ajuni - Beyond birth and death
- Saibhang - God is the enlightener
- Gur Parshad - God can be reached through the mercy and Grace of the true Guru
- Sewa is "selfless service" (providing service to the community). Sewa comes in 3 forms:
- TAN - Tan is using physical service to help other people. This could be working in the "Langar" or helping to look after the Gurdwara.
- MAN - Man is mental service (using the mind). This could be through teaching others or by studying the Guru Granth Sahib (Sikh holy book).
- DHAN - Dhan is material service (where you give up something). This could be spending time with elders in the community or contributing desvandh (1/10 of one's income to a cause).
- The Golden rules of Sikhism:
- Nam Simran - To remember God
- Kirat Karma - To earn one's living by honest means and hard work
- Vand Chhakna - To share with others who are less fortunate
- The Guru Granth Sahib is the Sikh holy book (like the bible is to Christians). The book is almost treated like a human. The book is put to bed at night in silk sheets; It is carried in a procession; It is lifted with an armed guard; Worshippers bow before it; And it is sat on a golden throne.
- The Gurdwara is the Sikh place of worship. Men and women sit separately in a Gurdwara. At the front of the interior of the Gurdwara, there is a golden throne, in which the Guru Granth Sahib is placed on top during worship. The Langar is in the Gurdwara too.
- The Panj Kakke (or informally known as the 5k's) are 5 objects that Sikhs own to symbolise that they are a Sikh. Here they are, and what they symbolise:
- Kara - Bracelet - Strength; Unity; Eternity
- Kanga - Comb - Hygiene
- Kesh - Turban - Uncut hair
- Kachera - Short trousers - Modesty; need to live a good life
- Kirpan - Sword - Courage of 1st 5 Sikh's