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Sikhism as a Religion by Hassan

World Religions was another interesting topic in our tutorial class with Mr. John Brito on 7th January 2013. It was about the different religions in this universe such as Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Christianity and many more. For me it was important class as I discovered a number of religions which was unfamiliar to me as I grew up a country which is mono-religious and my people 100% Muslim Community. After the class finished our lecturer asked us to choose one of the religions which were new to us and to write about it in reflective diary. For me I was interesting Hinduism and especially I picked up Sikhism and after I went through several sources I found out that it is an interesting religion where the followers belief one god as Muslims, moreover the beauty of this religion is that Sikhs believe that they should lead good lives and meditate, rather than focusing on performing rituals and sacrifices.

Sikhism is a kind of religion in India

Sikhism is a monotheistic religion that has around 20 million followers in the world. Most Sikhs live in India. The religious state of an individual is of great significance to the religion. The Sikh scripture is called the Guru Granth Sahib. It is the current Sikh Guru, according to instruction left by the tenth Sikh Guru who told followers to revere the book as a spiritual guide and guru after his death. There are 20 million Sikhs in the world, who mostly live in the Punjab province of India.

History of Sikhism

Sikhism was founded in the Punjab district of modern-day India and Pakistan in around 1500 BC by Guru Nanak. The predominant religions were Hinduism and Islam, and Sikhism was quite different from them. The bases of Sikhism are the teachings of Guru Nanak and those of the nine Sikh gurus who came after him. Sikhs have been subject to many attacks and killings, have militarized and gone to battles, and have been victims of genocides. They have had troubles with Muslims, Hindus, British colonial rule, and have been in the middle of the India-Pakistan conflict. In recent decades Sikhism has been involved in a conflict with India for the Punjab regions under Indian rule. In 1984, Indira Gandhi was killed by two of her bodyguards who were Sikhs. Anti-Sikh riots took place and thousands of Sikhs were killed. Things have been calmer since the 1990s. The latest Hindu claims that Sikhism is a form of Hinduism have disturbed the Sikhs.

Sikhism Beliefs

At the center of Sikhism is one God. Sikhs believe that they should lead good lives and meditate, rather than focusing on performing rituals and sacrifices. Sikhs believe that religion should deal with people’s daily issues and that community life is important. The three duties of a Sikh are: praying and having God in the mind all the time, giving to charity and helping those who are poor and sick, and working honestly. Leading a good life involves treating others equally and with compassion. Leading a truthful life is of prime importance. In Sikhism, the five vices are anger, greed, lust, pride, and attachment to material things. In order to be liberated, a follower must stay away from these vices. According to Sikhism, and like Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism, individuals go through cycles of birth, life, and rebirth with karma playing a decisive role in the quality of life. Liberation involves experiencing God through worship and love and uniting with God and is not earned but given by God.

Sikhism Customs

The place of worship for Sikhism is the gurdwara. Their major holy days of Sikhism are: Diwali, which marks the prison release of the sixth Guru in 1619; Gurpurbs which are festivals associated with Gurus; Vaisakhi, or Baisakhi, which is the Sikh New Year festival. In 1699, Guru Gobind Singh created the 5 Ks to distinguish Sikhs who have been initiated into the Khalsa, or Sikh community. Khalsa members wear the following 5 Ks: a steel bracelet called Kara, cotton underwear called Kaccha, a wooden comb called Kanga, uncut hair called Kesh, and a steel sword called Kirpan. The 5 Ks are common bonds between all Sikhs.

All in all, Sikhism is a religion originated from India which has a big number of believers mostly living in India. During my search about this religion i realize that there are some common duties of my religion ISLAM and Sikhism such as praying and having God in the mind all the time, giving to charity and helping those who are poor and sick, and working honestly and as well as there are more differences as all the religions are different.

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