Sikhism at Glance
Sikhism (Sikhi, ਸਿੱਖੀ in Panjabi) is one of the major world religions, primarily developed in 16th and 17th century India. “Sikhi”comes from the word “Sikh”, and the word “Sikh” comes from the Sanskrit root “śiṣya” (शिषढ़य) which means “disciple” or “learner”. Guru Nanak was the founder of Sikhi. He was born in 1469 in the village of Nankana Sahib, near Lahore in present-day Pakistan. The faith system is based on the teachings of Guru Nanak Dev and ten successive Sikh Gurus (the last one being the sacred text Guru Granth Sahib) and is the fifth-largest organized religion in the world. This system of religious philosophy and expression has been traditionally known as the Gurmat (literally the counsel of the gurus) or the Sikh Dharma.
The principal belief of Sikhism is faith in waheguru — represented using the sacred symbol of ik ŝaṅkĝr, the Universal God. Sikhism advocates the pursuit of salvation through disciplined, personal meditation on the name and message of God. A key distinctive feature of Sikhism is a non-anthropomorphic concept of God, to the extent that one can interpret God as the Universe itself.
The followers of Sikhism are ordained to follow the teachings of the ten Sikh Gurus, or enlightened leaders, as well as the holy scripture entitled the Gurū Granth Sĝhib, which, along with the writings of six of the ten Sikh Gurus, includes selected works of many devotees from diverse socio-economic and religious backgrounds. The text was decreed by Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth guru, as the final guru of the Khalsa Panth.
Sikhism’s traditions and teachings are distinctively associated with the history, society and culture of the Punjab. Adherents of Sikhism are known as Sikhs (students or disciples) and number over 23 million across the world. Most Sikhs live in Punjab in India and, until India’s partition, millions of Sikhs lived in what is now Pakistani Punjab.
Sikhism is also called Sikhi or Gurmat or Sikh Matt or Aad-Matt.
Basics of Sikhi