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KB31

Is Sikhism a religion

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For some time I've posted and been active on Sikh Philosophy Network site.  They have a "Hard Discussions" section, and whenever I tried posting anything, one of their long time senior members, would downplay my posts and say things like Sikhi isn't a religion, and that we don't have a god (at least not the way other religions identify God as a person).  He would try portray Sikhi as just a way of life and not a religion.  I always reply that, that's his own opinion, and I would think that the majority of the sangath worldwide would agree with me.  I've given up much hope on that website.  It is very senior members and admin dominant.  They don't take any questions that might come off criticizing.  They break down people posts line by line if they approve or meets their view of thinking.  

So I thought I'll try another Sikh website.  What do the members on this feel about Sikhism being a religion.  Yes or No?

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4 hours ago, KB31 said:

For some time I've posted and been active on Sikh Philosophy Network site.  They have a "Hard Discussions" section, and whenever I tried posting anything, one of their long time senior members, would downplay my posts and say things like Sikhi isn't a religion, and that we don't have a god (at least not the way other religions identify God as a person).  He would try portray Sikhi as just a way of life and not a religion.  I always reply that, that's his own opinion, and I would think that the majority of the sangath worldwide would agree with me.  I've given up much hope on that website.  It is very senior members and admin dominant.  They don't take any questions that might come off criticizing.  They break down people posts line by line if they approve or meets their view of thinking.  

So I thought I'll try another Sikh website.  What do the members on this feel about Sikhism being a religion.  Yes or No?

From a perspective, Sikhism is a highly organized religion with strict codes of conduct governing the daily activities of its adherents.

It is a strict monotheist religion, but the concept of monotheism is different from that in Islam or Judaism.

Satguru Sri Guru Nanak Dev jee Maharaaj (currently in the form of Gurbani) is the incarnation of the Almighty God and is supposed to be worshiped.

 

Bhul chuk maaf

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8 hours ago, KB31 said:

For some time I've posted and been active on Sikh Philosophy Network site.  They have a "Hard Discussions" section, and whenever I tried posting anything, one of their long time senior members, would downplay my posts and say things like Sikhi isn't a religion, and that we don't have a god (at least not the way other religions identify God as a person).  He would try portray Sikhi as just a way of life and not a religion.  I always reply that, that's his own opinion, and I would think that the majority of the sangath worldwide would agree with me.  I've given up much hope on that website.  It is very senior members and admin dominant.  They don't take any questions that might come off criticizing.  They break down people posts line by line if they approve or meets their view of thinking.  

So I thought I'll try another Sikh website.  What do the members on this feel about Sikhism being a religion.  Yes or No?

YES, Sikhi as taught by the ten Gurus is a religion because everything ghe Gurus taught us points to One God, IK Onkaar.

I know which website it is, but won’t name it myself. I have also tried to argue with them and they just blocked me too. That website is full of anti-sikh shyte and if anyone tries to tell them the truth they just bad mouth them and before you know, their posts are all deleted and you don’t see anymore  posts from fhem.

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37 minutes ago, amardeep said:

The way I understand religion is - a closed and narrow way of life with clear cut boundaries, - an in-group and an out-group that Is setup as an enemy of sort. A religion also has a somewhat fixed theology and practice. Dualistic in nature 

 

You have a very narrow definition of the word. You need to expand your mind a little bit to understand this term to start with. Religions originating in India are not ‘closed’ don’t have a ‘narrow way of life or clear cut boundaries’ at all. In fact, they are open and accepting of everyone born or not born in any particular religion. They are accepting. If anything, one can lead any type of life and still label himself as Hindu, Sikh or Buddhist. So, your idea of ‘narrow way of life’ is out of the question. As a matter of fact, these religions set one free and do not enslave one within any boundaries. In other words, there are no boundaries. If there were, no one will ever consider working towards nirvana, mukti or moksha? Religions of the East are very relaxed, no existence of ‘in-group or out-group’ anywhere, all false and have no foundations anywhere in these religions at all. Religions of India - no one’s enemy, theology/practice  can be interpreted according to one’s ability or development! Dualistic, yes, but only while one remains ignorant! Religions of India show us a way through which we can liberate ourselves, to say they have boundaries would mean we have to rely on outside influences for our liberation.

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To me sikhi is a religion. Its organized, has a place of worship, culture, rituals, a form of baptism, a peaceful belief in a higher being.  Some people try to separate sikhi from the abrahamic religions, and call it a way of life.  So if not a religion then it would seem very cult like (not being disrespectful) just saying.   

Im a born sikh. But for the last few years I've see myself more of a atheist.  On the other site, when I questioned or posted a different view of thinking, they being the seniors, would get very small and ignorant, and judgmental. 

Sorry for the mini rant, just couldn't get passed their insanity.  Just because you might not agree with all that sikhi has evolved into,  and though guru nanak wanted all to be one, it's very hard to deny sikhism isn't a religion. 

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27 minutes ago, amardeep said:

I think Sikhi has morphed into a religion in the last 100 years. Prior to the British raj, sikhi wasn’t a religion. It was plural and diverse in nature breaking it free from the narrow confinements of religion.  

Which narrow confinements would they  be?

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3 minutes ago, amardeep said:

See my post above 

No, I am neither going to see them nor respond to them any further, because they make zero sense! You need to elaborate  to support  and clarify your statements otherwise they don’t make much sense! Need to expand your mind, too narrow! 

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I agree with your definition of Indian “religions” above. I merely disagree that Sikhi - as per scripture and tradition-  can be regarded as a religion as understood in its modern usage. But Sikhism (notice I said Sikhism and not Sikhi) as understood in its post Singh Sabha form is definately a religion. 

Edited by amardeep

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1 hour ago, amardeep said:

I agree with your definition of Indian “religions” above. I merely disagree that Sikhi - as per scripture and tradition-  can be regarded as a religion as understood in its modern usage. But Sikhism (notice I said Sikhism and not Sikhi) as understood in its post Singh Sabha form is definately a religion. 

WelI, am only 15 years old so I I wouldn’t really know what happened post Singh Saba period! At the moment I am looking at all religions from India as very tolerant, all accepting and all embracing those from different religious backgrounds!  Say, if a non-indian person wants to follow anything that is Sikh related, no one has any objection, they let him be.

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2 hours ago, amardeep said:

I agree with your definition of Indian “religions” above. I merely disagree that Sikhi - as per scripture and tradition-  can be regarded as a religion as understood in its modern usage. But Sikhism (notice I said Sikhism and not Sikhi) as understood in its post Singh Sabha form is definately a religion. 

Yah but Sikhism practices Sikhi right? I mean, can you 100% say that the last 8 gurus, what they molded Sikhi into,  that guru Nanak would approve all of it.  Hard to tell, but it changed, and everyone accepted it with each new change n teachings.  So whatever it is today, is what it is - a religion.  The fact that 500 years ago it was something else is totally irrelevant today.  

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23 minutes ago, KB31 said:

 I mean, can you 100% say that the last 8 gurus, what they molded Sikhi into,  that guru Nanak would approve all of it. 

What an absurd thing to say. What makes you think that the 10 Gurus were different?  You are saying that you do not believe the Gurus after Guru Nanak Dev Ji .

 

1 hour ago, manraj19 said:

WelI, am only 15 years old so I I wouldn’t really know what happened post Singh Saba period! At the moment I am looking at all religions from India as very tolerant, all accepting and all embracing those from different religious backgrounds! 

Very observant for a 15 year old.  Do you believe that the bolded part was always true?

 

3 hours ago, KB31 said:

Im a born sikh. But for the last few years I've see myself more of a atheist.

Why do you think you are an athiest?

 

14 hours ago, KB31 said:

For some time I've posted and been active on Sikh Philosophy Network site.  They have a "Hard Discussions" section, and whenever I tried posting anything, one of their long time senior members, would downplay my posts and say things like Sikhi isn't a religion, and that we don't have a god (at least not the way other religions identify God as a person).  He would try portray Sikhi as just a way of life and not a religion.  I always reply that, that's his own opinion, and I would think that the majority of the sangath worldwide would agree with me.  I've given up much hope on that website.  It is very senior members and admin dominant.  They don't take any questions that might come off criticizing.  They break down people posts line by line if they approve or meets their view of thinking. 

The Sikh Parasite Network is nothing but a group of fools who cannot handle debate and discussion unless its on their own terms. Esp that Aman creature. However if you are beginning to identify as an athiest I think you would be more welcome there than here.

 

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1 hour ago, chatanga1 said:

Very observant for a 15 year old.  Do you believe that the bolded part was always true?

 

 

I am not very sure. I think everyone was accepted into sikhi whether they were Mughals, Hindus, Buddhists or Jains. I know the Mughal rulers were all Sunni and wanted to convert everyone to their religion, but not too sure about the others though. I would like to know more. What do you think?

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Let's look at some of the definitions of religion from credible sources:

Quote

  •  Action or conduct indicating belief in, obedience to, and reverence for a god, gods, or similar superhuman power; the performance of religious rites or observances.
  • A particular system of faith and worship.

Unquote[1]

 

Quote

  • a personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices
  • the service and worship of God or the supernatural

Unquote[2]

 

[1] - http://www.oed.com/viewdictionaryentry/Entry/161944

[2] - https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/religion

 

Bhul chuk maaf

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5 hours ago, amardeep said:

I think Sikhi has morphed into a religion in the last 100 years. Prior to the British raj, sikhi wasn’t a religion. It was plural and diverse in nature breaking it free from the narrow confinements of religion.  

 

4 hours ago, amardeep said:

I agree with your definition of Indian “religions” above. I merely disagree that Sikhi - as per scripture and tradition-  can be regarded as a religion as understood in its modern usage. But Sikhism (notice I said Sikhism and not Sikhi) as understood in its post Singh Sabha form is definately a religion. 

 

Maybe some of what you mentioned above applied during the time of the first nine incarnations. But, Sri Satguru jee (Tenth Master) definitely organized Sikhi into a highly organized religion with many codes of conduct, which had to be followed strictly.

Also, if you look at Sikhism from the perspective of Akali Nihang Singh Samprada and Taksaals (Gyani Sampradas), again one easily arrive at the conclusion of Sikhism being a highly organized belief system with strict rules and codes.

 

Bhul chuk maaf

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First of all  KB31 Jee, 

thanks for bringing forward, such a beautiful topic.

Sikhism is a religion if only we understand what the term religion means.

The word religion, comes from the latin word "religare", which means that which reunites  with the origin.

So, if only we follow implicitly the core teachings, or let us say the teachings of Guru Sahiban, without any adulterations, additions, or substractions, then of course the jeeva atma merges in its origin Wahiguru Akal Purukh, thus the defintion of  the wordreligion is completed, not otherwise.

If we had to expalin anybody in simple words, how in Sikhee that purpose of our union with Him is achieved, then I would mention the following few verses from the Gurbani, which summarizes without any doubt, the final stage in religion, if the required conditions take place: 

1) Awar kaaj, tere kitay na kaam, mil Sadh Sangat bhaj kewal Nam.

2) Nanak Nam, jahaaz hae, jin chareeya sey utareeya paar.

3) Ik Oankar     Satgur parsad    jap

4) Sarab Dharam Meh Shresht Dharam Har Ko Naam Jap Nirmal Karam.

5) Nam jiskay man vaseeya, vajeh Shabad ganere.

 

You see, from the teachings of Guru Jee, we come to know that everything revolves around Nam/Shabad and His Kirpa. 

From Nam, everything originated, and so, if it is in Nam that we have to merge, then that can only be achieved by Nam japna, for that Nam japna, makes pargat within us the Jot and the Anhad Dhun or Anhad Shabad itself, which constantly emanates from that origin, which Satguru Nanak since the very begining says:

Ik Oankar, Satnam. Which means, there is only one Lord Creator, which is Nam, and that Nam is the everlasting, eternal Truth also or Sat, thus Guru Jee called it Satnam.

So to finalize, if we follow Guru Jee´s instructions faithfullyvwithoung looking here or there, then only can we say, Sikhee is religion for us, otherwise, it is one more among so many other dharams.

It is for us to understand the Bani  what Guru Sahiban want to convey us through it,  then also,  to choose and be a true Gursikh, nobody can force anybody in anything. 

Stay blessed.

Sat Sree Akal.

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7 hours ago, paapiman said:

 

 

Maybe some of what you mentioned above applied during the time of the first nine incarnations. But, Sri Satguru jee (Tenth Master) definitely organized Sikhi into a highly organized religion with many codes of conduct, which had to be followed strictly.

Also, if you look at Sikhism from the perspective of Akali Nihang Singh Samprada and Taksaals (Gyani Sampradas), again one easily arrive at the conclusion of Sikhism being a highly organized belief system with strict rules and codes.

 

Bhul chuk maaf

The Khalsa of Guru Gobind Singh would come closer to  a modern understanding of (western) religion. It still differs however. The notion of one scripture (sola scriptura) is not present in the early Khalsa due to several granths having holy status , nor of one institution as a centre of worship. The Sikhs of old had gurdware, bungas, akharas, thikanas, dharamsalas etc all as their different kind of institutions. Nor  Is there only one way of being Sikh as there are the four samprdayas that each follow a different code of conduct, with different outer symbols and with a different philosophy of the Ik oankaar. So even the theological emphasis differs.  All of this is strength and power. But for the people looking for a “religion” in Sikhi, they would find early Sikhs rather confusing. With the Singh Sabha you start to get Sikhism with its sola scriptura (out with dasam Granth) one institution (only a gurdwara could qualify) one rahit, one form of symbols, one God only known as Vahiguru and one kind of Sikh.  

With Sikhism you have a religion  

 

Edited by amardeep

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