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Understanding Sikhism

Sikhism was founded by Shri Guru Nanak Dev Ji in Northern India during the late 15th century. The name comes from the word Sikh, which in turn comes from the Sanskrit root śisya meaning "disciple" or "learner". It is generally considered to be the world’s fifth largest organized religion.

Sikhs in Wisconsin-slide0
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images
Voluneteer Ravi Singh from the Slough-based Sikh charity Khalsa Aid poses for a photograph at Burrowbridge on the Somerset Levels on February 27, 2014 in Somerset, England.
Voluneteer Ravi Singh from the Slough-based Sikh charity Khalsa Aid poses for a photograph at Burrowbridge on the Somerset Levels on February 27, 2014 in Somerset, England. Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images

Like Christianity and Islam, Sikhism recognizes God as the singular Supreme Being. However Sikhism disagrees with Christianity that God took human form as Christ or any other person.

God is eternal and He is not bound by space. God reveals Himself through people known as Gurus. Each Guru is one with God and delivers God's message to humans, all of whom are considered equal to each other regardless of race or gender.

There are no rituals in Sikhism but they do believe in Baptism, known as Amrit, as a sacred and important part of Sikh life. A baptized Sikh lives a holy lifestyle remaining focused on being One with God.

Sikhs are vegetarians and refrain from any alcohol or drugs.

Heaven and hell are real in Sikhism. Good deeds will get you into Heaven but if God does not leave your deeds had enough good you will be sent to hell. Once in hell you are given another chance through reincarnation to live a life acceptable to God. This cycle will continue until you eventually live a life worthy of Heaven.

This is part of a series on the cultures of religions excerpted from getmaximpact.com of Rochester Hills, Mich. It looks at Christian, Muslim, Hinduism, Buddhism, atheism, Sikhism, and Judaism. To view more, click here. It is used by their permission.

©2014 Max Impact, used with permission.

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