Islam and Sikhism
and other religions
Islam is an Abrahamic religion and Sikhism is a dharmic religion. Unlike the Abrahmic Monotheism of Islam, Panentheism i.e. one creator (Ik Onkar) pervading the whole of creation and beyond, describes Sikh theology more precisely. The prophet Mohammad founded Islam, whereas Sikhism is attributed to Guru Nanak. The Quran and the Guru Granth Sahib are the main texts of Muslims and Sikhs respectively. In Islam, the legal system based on the Quran and the Sunnah is known as Sharia; there are no such legal system mentioned in Guru Granth Sahib.
- 1 Basics of Islam and Sikhism Theology
- 2 The Sikh Gurus and Muslim contemporaries
- 3 Differences between Islam and Sikhism
- 4 Harmandir Sahib and Mecca
- 5 Sufis and Sikhs
- 6 Recent relations
- 7 Ahmadiyya Muslims and Sikhism
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 Further reading
- 11 External links
Basics of Islam and Sikhism Theology
Islam's most fundamental concept is a rigorous monotheism, called tawhīd (Arabic: توحيد). -Allah (the Arabic word for "God") is described in chapter 112 of the Qur'an as "Say: ("He is God", and the One and Only; Creator, the Eternal, Absolute; neither begets nor is He begotten; And there is none like unto Him."(112:1-4)- (Throughout the Qur'an, God is referred to in the masculine, but it is consensus opinion amongst Muslim scholars that God has no gender. Belief in the "Day of Resurrection/Judgement Day ", Yawm al-Qiyāmah (Arabic: يوم القيامة) is also crucial for Muslims. They believe the time of Qiyāmah is preordained by God but unknown to man. The trials and tribulations preceding and during the Qiyāmah are described in the Quran and the hadith. The Qur'an emphasizes bodily resurrection ie All Dead beings will be recreated by Allah on this day , a break from the pre-Islamic Arabian understanding of death.Beleivers will be ultimatemly awarded heavens and Non-Beleivers will suffer in Hell fire eternally .
For Sikhism very first verse of Guru Granth Sahib known as Mool Mantra or Root Mantra describe God as " One Universal Creator Immanent throughout His Creation . Thy Name Is Truth, Beyond Fear, Beyond Hatred,Beyond Time , Beyond Birth, Self-Existent. By Guru's Grace~ Chant : True In The Primal Beginning. True Throughout The Ages. True Here And Now. O Nanak, Forever And Ever True. ||1||
Aim of a Sikh is to realise his or her own True-Self or Oneness,Duality is just an illusion due to five vices 1)Kam ie Lust ,2)Krodh ie Anger ,3)Lobh ie Greed ,4)Moh ie attachment ,5)Ahankaar ie Ego.
"Everything is within the home of the self; there is nothing beyond. One who searches outside is deluded by doubt. By Guru's Grace, one who has found the Lord within is happy, inwardly and outwardly. ||1||" "Guru Granth Sahib ang 102.
The Sikh Gurus and Muslim contemporaries
The relations between earlier Sikh Gurus and earlier Islamic Mughal Empire were not much strained , During his fourth journey Udasi Guru Nanak visited many middle eastern countries to preach his message of Truth Mughal Empror Akbar also visited third Sikh Guru, Guru Amardas at Goindwal and taken Langar ie free kitchen there and offered donations for Langar.
But with the rise of fundamentalists such as Ahmad Sirhindi also described as Mujaddid Alf Thānī, meaning the "reviver of the second millennium Islam" in the Mughal Empire, began the persecution of Non Muslims in the empire . Fifth Guru, Guru Arjan was executed by Jahangir. 
Guru Hargobind, (sixth Guru of the Sikhs), after the Martyrdom Guru Arjan Dev saw that it would no longer be possible to protect the Sikh community without the aid of arms. He built Akal Takhat the Throne of the Immortal and it is the highest political institution of the Sikhs and he also wore two swords of Miri and piri 
Guru Tegh Bahadur(ninth Guru) was beheaded at chandini chowk Delhi for protection of Hindus of Kashmir who were forced to convert to Islam by Aurangzeb, along with fellow devotees Bhai Mati Dass, Bhai Sati Dass and Bhai Dayalaa. Tenth Guru Guru Gobind Singh formed Khalsa known as Army of Akal Purakh (Immortal) and Gave 5 Ks to Khalsa .
Two of the younger sons of Guru Gobind Singh aged only 9 and 7 were bricked up alive by Wazir Khan in Sirhand (Punjab).
After the death of Bandha, the Sikh Misls(Sikh confedracies) came to power in a series of sweeping military and diplomatic victories.
Ranjit Singh united these confedaries into one large Empire. The empire comprised almost 200,000 square miles (520,000 km2) that included the following modern day political divisions made up: Punjab (India and Pakistan)Jammu, Haryana,Himachal Pradesh(India), Kashmir, conquered in 1818( India/Pakistan/China) Gilgit, Northern Areas, Khyber Pass, Peshawar, Pakistan North-West Frontier Province and FATA(Pakistan, Afghanistan ), Parts of Western Tibet (1841), (China)
Differences between Islam and Sikhism
The Five Pillars of Islam (Arabic: أركان الإسلام) is the term given to the five duties incumbent on every Muslim. These duties are Shahada (Profession of Faith), Salat (prayers), Zakat (Giving of Alms), Sawm (Fasting during Ramadan) and Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca). These five practices are essential to Sunni Islam; Shi'a Muslims subscribe to eight ritual practices which substantially overlap with the five Pillars. .
Sikhs are prohibited from eating halal and kosher food or any other ritually slaughtered (known as kutha meat) meat or fish. Sikhs eat (Jhatka) meat, although Gurudwara langar is largely lacto-vegetarian, though this is understood to be a result of efforts to present a meal that is respectful of the diets of any person who would wish to dine, rather than out of dogma. Sikhs do not believe in pilgrimages; Muslims, in contrast, consider Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca) a crucial part of the faith. Male Sikhs do not circumcise unlike Muslim males.
Role and Equality of Women
The Quran dedicates numerous verses to Muslim women, their role, duties and rights, in addition to Sura 4 with 176 verses named An-Nisa (women). Some verses are considered as key in defining gender roles in Islam, one being verse 4.34:
Men are the maintainers of women because Allah has made some of them to excel others and because they spend out of their property; the good women are therefore obedient, guarding the unseen as Allah has guarded; and (as to) those on whose part you fear desertion, admonish them, and leave them alone in the sleeping-places and beat them; then if they obey you, do not seek a way against them; surely Allah is High, Great''.
It should be noted that translations from Arabic to English differ widely and that the one above gives a very different impression than the one below, which Reza Aslan states is, "because of the variability of the Arabic language, [equally] grammatically, syntactically, and definitionally correct."
"Men are the support of women [qawwamuna ‘ala an-nisa] as God gives some [i.e., mean] more means than others, and because they [men] spend of their wealth (to provide for them).... As for women you feel are averse, talk to them suasively; then leave them alone in bed (without molesting them) and go to bed with them (when they are willing)." (Translation by Majid Fakhry, published by New York University.)
In Qur'an, surah 2:182 equates two women as substitute for one man, in matters requiring witnesses.
Qur'an differentiates on the Gender basis and its states that "the men are a degree above them", Women are expected to be obidient to their husbands . Muslim woman can marry a Muslim only, Divorce parameters are also different for both genders .Polygamy is allowed in Islam .The right to own slave women, seized during military campaigns and jihad against non-believing pagans and infidels from Southern Europe to Africa to India to Central Asia, was considered a natural right of a Muslim . Sharia, .
In Sikhism, the Guru Granth Sahib stated that the Sikh woman has all the rights and privileges enjoyed by a man. She is considered to have the same soul as man and has equal right to grow spiritually. The Sikh woman is allowed to lead religious congregations, to take part in Akhand Path (the continuous recitation of the Holy Scriptures), to perform Kirtan, to work as Granthi (priest) or a preacher and to participate freely in all religious, cultural, social, political and secular activities.
From woman, man is born,within woman, man is conceived; to woman he is engaged and married. Woman becomes his friend; through woman, the future generations come. When his woman dies, he seeks another woman; to woman he is bound. So why call her bad? From her, kings are born. From woman, woman is born; without woman, there would be no one at all.' Guru Nanak, Raag Aasaa Mehal 1, Page 473
In accordance with the Islamic belief in predestination, or divine preordainment (al-qadā wa l-qadar), God has full knowledge and control over all that occurs. This is explained in Qur'anic verses such as "Say: 'Nothing will happen to us except what God has decreed for us: He is our protector'…" For Muslims, everything in the world that occurs, good or evil, has been preordained and nothing can happen unless permitted by God. In Islamic theology, divine preordainment does not suggest an absence of God's indignation against evil, because any evils that do occur are thought to result in future benefits men may not be able to see. According to Muslim theologians, although events are pre-ordained, man possesses free will in that he has the faculty to choose between right and wrong, and is thus responsible for his actions. According to Islamic tradition, all that has been decreed by God is written in al-Lawh al-Mahfūz, the "Preserved Tablet". ,.
Harmandir Sahib and Mecca
The Golden Temple Amritsar India (Sri Harimandir Sahib Amritsar) is not only a central religious place of the Sikhs, but also a symbol of human brotherhood and equality. Everybody, irrespective of cast, creed or race can seek spiritual solace and religious fulfilment without any hindrance. It also represents the distinct identity, glory and heritage of the Sikhs.
As advised by Sri Guru Amar Dass (3rd Sikh Guru), Sri Guru Ram Dass (4th Sikh Guru) started the digging of Amrit Sarovar (Holy Tank) of Sri Harmandir Sahib in 1577 A.D., which was later on brick-lined by Sri Guru Arjan Dev (5th Sikh Guru) on December 15, 1588 and He also started the construction of Sri Harimandir Sahib. Sri Guru Granth Sahib (scripture of the Sikhs), after its compilation, was first installed at Sri Harimandir Sahib on August 16, 1604 A.D. A devout Sikh, Baba Budha Ji was appointed its first Head Priest.
The Golden Temple Amritsar India (Sri Harmandir Sahib Amritsar) has a unique Sikh architecture. Built at a level lower than the surrounding land level, The Gurudwara teaches the lesson of egalitarianism and humility. The four entrances of this holy shrine from all four directions, signify that people belonging to every walk of life are equally welcome.In the Golden Temple Community Kitchen, Langar at an average 75,000 devotees or tourists take langar in the Community Kitchen daily; but the number becomes almost double on special occasions.
Mecca is a city in the Hijaz and the capital of Makkah province in Saudi Arabia. As the birthplace of Muhammad and a site of the composition of the Quran, Mecca is regarded as the holiest city in Islam, and a pilgrimage to it, known as the Hajj, is obligatory upon all able Muslims.
According to Islamic tradition, the history of Mecca goes back to Abraham (Ibrahim) who built the Kaaba with the help of his elder son Ishmael in around 2000 BCE when the inhabitants of what was then known as Bakkah had fallen away from the original monotheism of Abraham through the influence of the Amelkites. However, outside of Islamic tradition, little is known about the Kaaba before the 5th century CE. Islamic tradition attributes the beginning of Mecca to Ishmael's descendants... Around the 5th century CE, the Kaaba was a place of worship for the deities of Arabia's pagan tribes. tribe and remained until the 7th century CE.  An Arabic language word, its etymology, like that of Mecca, is obscure. Widely believed to be a synonym for Mecca, it is said to be more specifically the early name for the valley located therein, while Muslim scholars generally use it to refer to the sacred area of the city that immediately surrounds and includes the Kaaba.
The pilgrimage to Mecca involves millions of Muslims from all over the world to pray, women are to pray behind the men. There are two pilgrimages, the Hajj and the Umrah. Once a year, the Hajj, the greater pilgrimage, takes place in Mecca and nearby sites. During the Hajj, several million people of varying nationalities worship in unison. Every adult, healthy, sane Muslim who has the financial and physical capacity to travel to Mecca and can make arrangements for the care of his/her dependents during the trip, must perform the Hajj once in a lifetime. Umrah, the lesser pilgrimage, is not obligatory, but is recommended in the Qur'an. Often, they perform the Umrah while visiting the Masjid al-Haram.
Sufis and Sikhs
The Sikh Gurus had coordial relations with many Muslim Sufi Saints.The words of Baba Farid that resonates with panenthiestic Sikh Philosophy were included in Guru Granth Sahib by fifth Guru Guru Arjan Dev for example
"Fareed, the Creator is in the Creation, and the Creation abides in God. Whom can we call bad? There is none without Him. ||75|| "(Guru Granth Sahib)
In December 1588, a Sufi saint of Lahore, Mian Mir, who was a close friend of Guru Arjan Dev, initiated the construction of the Harmandir Sahib (Golden Temple) by laying the first foundation stone.
- Bhagat Beni
- Bhagat Bhikhan
- Fariduddin Ganjshakar (Baba Farid)
- Bhagat Sadhana
During the partition of India in 1947, there was much bloodshed between Sikhs, Hindus and Muslims, there was mass migration of people from all walks of life to leave their homes and belongings and travel by foot across the new border, on trains and on land people were killed in what was felt to be revenge attacks.
Today in the Indian subcontinent, relations between Indians and Pakistanis are very positive since relations between India and Pakistan have improved overall in the last 10 years, both countries have experienced increased levels of tourism by Pakistani Muslims wishing to visit Indian Islamic shrines or sport events in India, or Sikhs wishing to visit the few historical gurudwaras in neighboring Punjab in Pakistan.
In 2010 the Taliban attacked many minorities including Sikhs resulting in two beheadings.
Ahmadiyya Muslims and Sikhism
Sikhs and Ahmadi Muslims have historically had very good relations. A lot of Sikh religious representatives are often invited to the Ahmadiyya National Jalsa in Qadian, India. Even today Sikhs have very good relations with the Ahmadi Muslims. The Fourth Calif of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community referred to Sikhs as his own brothers. In 2005 the fifth Calif of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community visited Qadian India where he met several Sikh leaders who showed him great love and affection due to their historical strong ties with Ahmadies. Ahmadies view Guru Nanak as a very holy person and a great Saint. Thus Guru Nanak serves as a great uniting factor between Ahmadi Muslims and Sikhs. In fact Sikhism as known today was started around 200 years after the Gurus death. Guru Nanak did not teach the 5 k's of Sikhism. These were introduced by the 10th Guru, Guru Gobind Singh, who also introduced the element of militancy into Sikhism. They claim that Guru Gobind Singh had political problems with the Moghuls (who were Muslims) some of whom at times unfairly persecuted non-Muslims. As a result of these political wars some people of the Punjab region started resenting the Moghuls and all that they stood for; which of course included their religion Islam. Overtime the movement against Moghuls became stronger and stronger and the hatred towards Moghuls also turned into hatred towards Islam by some Sikhs. Guru Gobind Singh played a key role in organising a military against the Moghuls and introduced the 5 k's to them as well. At the time of Guru Nanak's death there were no Sikhs as known today. At his funeral only Muslims and Hindus were present and both demanded the body of Guru Nanak. Hindus wanted to burn it as they claimed that he was born into a Hindu family. Muslims wanted to bury the body . The founder of the Ahmadiyya, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, also wrote a book called Sat Bachan in the late 19th century in which he defended Guru Nanak against attacks by a prominent Hindu leader of the time. In his book, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad demonstrates that Guru Nanak was not a person of bad character as claimed by some Hindus at the time but was a very pious holy saint.
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- Conversion of non-Muslim places of worship into mosques
- Divisions of the world in Islam
- Islam and other religions
- Mughal Empire
- Hinduism and Sikhism
- Jainism and Sikhism
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- Bhagat Beni Ji
- A Gateway to Sikhism | Sikh Bhagats : Baba Sheikh Farid Ji – A Gateway to Sikhism
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