Posted November 30, 2013
by Jerry Alatalo
Sikhism is a monotheistic religion which originated in India during the 15th century. There are between 25 to 30 million adherents of the Sikh tradition, begun some six centuries ago by Guru Nanak Dev, the first of ten Sikh gurus. The primary text of the tradition is the holy scripture Guru Granth Sahib.
The followers of Sikh traditions (Sikhi) have the principle belief in the one God, who Sikhs call Waheguru, guided to realization and connection with the one God through adherence to the teachings of the ten Sikh gurus, or enlightened leaders, along with the Guru Granth Sahib. Guru Nanak summed up Sikh teaching with the following statement: “Realization of truth is higher than all else. Higher still is truthful living”.
The basic Sikh teachings include the view that all human beings are equal, and that there should be no discrimination based on creed, caste, or gender. No matter a person’s sex, religion, or race, all are equal in the eyes of Waheguru (God). In the teachings Waheguru is sightless, shapeless, timeless, and infinite in power over everything – omnipresent. God can be seen in all of creation and this is in the awareness of those who are spiritually awakened.
Although God is not fully understandable by human beings, God is not wholly unknowable. Through the disciplined practice of meditation one can experience communication with God, a view that other spiritual traditions share. The biggest obstacle to one’s communicating and connecting with God and truth is one’s ego. As realization of truth, and truthful living, is the supreme purpose of life, honest meditation can bring about the taming of one’s ego, allowing for the possible connection with God and truth.
All human beings share the same quality of holding truth inside the body, the truth being timeless and deathless. When a person accesses truth and it shines in that person’s heart, the man or woman then understands the wisdom contained in the religious texts of every spiritual tradition.
Pearl Buck (1892-1973) was an American writer of novels whose “The Good Earth” was the best-selling fictional book in 1931 and 1932 in the USA. Ms. Buck received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1938. She was one of the first writers to receive an English translation of the Guru Granth Sahib. She said the following about the Sikh sacred book:
“I have studied the scriptures of the great religions, but I do not find elsewhere the same power of appeal to the heart and mind as I find here in these volumes. They are compact in spite of their length, and are a revelation of the vast reach of the human varying from the most noble concept of God, to the recognition and indeed the insistence upon the practical needs of the body. There is something strangely modern about the scriptures and this puzzled me until I learned that they are in fact comparatively modern, compiled as late as the 16th century, when explorers were beginning to discover that the globe upon which we all live is a single entity divided only by arbitrary lines of our own making. Perhaps this sense of unity is the source of power I find in these volumes. They speak to a person of any religion or of none. They speak for the human heart and the searching mind.”
You may have an awareness of the Sikh traditions through study of the religious texts of Sikhism. For those who may have only heard of the Sikh tradition, or who have never heard of it, this video will perhaps serve as a type of introduction. In my view there can never be too much understanding between men and women from the various regions and nations around the Earth.
- Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj (sikhunity.wordpress.com)
- Prepare to parade: Sikh temple leaders gearing up for annual weekend extravaganza (appeal-democrat.com)
- This stuff is really Sikh. (wellthisiswhatithink.wordpress.com)
- Barack Obama greets Sikhs on Guru Nanak Dev’s birth anniversary (dnaindia.com)
- Guru Nanak (tweedsmuirlibrary.wordpress.com)