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Sikhism - Introduction

Sikhism is one of the younger faiths of the world, as compared with religions like Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity or Islam. It is a monotheistic faith, preaching the existence of only one God, and teaching ideals that may be universally accepted today and in the future: honesty, compassion, humility, piety, social commitment, and most of all tolerance for other religions. The word 'Sikh', derived from the Sanskrit word 'shishya', means a disciple, a learner, a seeker of truth. A Sikh believes in One God and the teachings of the Ten Gurus, embodied in the Sikh Holy Scripture, Guru Granth Sahib. Sikhism was founded by Guru Nanak Dev Ji at the beginning of the sixteenth century. The succeeding nine Gurus nurtured and developed his ideas and teachings. Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the tenth Guru, brought to an end to the line of human Gurus and in 1708, installed Guru Granth Sahib, as the permanent Guru of the Sikhs.

The 10 Sikh Gurus provided guidance for about 240 years, from them the Guru Granth Sahib will be the "Only" Guru to provide guidence forever. They taught the basic values of freedom, brotherhood, charity, obedience, understanding, sympathy, patience, humility, simplicity, and piety, and outlined the path to spirituality in life. The Gurus themselves said that they were not to be worshipped as Sikhs would have gotten attached to the bodies. Instead, Gurus connected Sikhs with the "word" or God . Guru Gobind Singh Ji said:

"See me only as the slave of God.
Let this be known beyond the shadow of doubt."

This shows how much humility Gurus have in themselves.

The Basic Belief of the Sikhs

The Mool Mantar (literally, the root verse; the first hymn composed by Guru Nanak) sums up the basic belief of the Sikhs.

God spoke the following verse on this most blessed day to Guru Nanak Dev Ji and the entire world. Known as the Mool Mantra. Every Sikh is expected to recite it daily. The very first verse written in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji (the Sikh scripture) and found at many other places before other hymns in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji. :

Ik Onkar (God is One)
Sat Nam ( His name is True)
Kartaa Purakh (He is the Creator)
Nirbhau (He is without fear)
Nirvair (He is inimical to none)
Akal-murat (He never dies)
Ajooni (He is beyond births and deaths)
Saibhang ( He is self illuminated)
Gurprasaad (He is realized by the kindness of the True Guru)
Jap (Repeat His Name)

And in God's court Guru Nanak spoke the following, which God accepted and condoned, and comes write after "Jap".

Aad sach (He is True in the beginning, (before the anything (universe) existed)
Jugaad sach (He was True when the ages commenced and has ever been True)
Hai bhi sach (He is also True now)
Nanak hosi bhi sach. ((Satguru) Nanak (says that) he will be certainly True in the future.)