The Punjab ( ( listen), , , ), also spelled Panjab, panj-āb, land of "five rivers" (Punjabi: پنجاب (Shahmukhi); ਪੰਜਾਬ (Gurumukhi)), is a geographical and cultural region in the northern part of the Indian subcontinent, comprising areas of eastern Pakistan and northern India. Not being a political unit, the boundaries of the region are ill-defined and focus on historical accounts.
The Punjab region has been inhabited by Indus Valley Civilisation, Indo-Aryan peoples, Indo-Scythians and has seen numerous invasions by the Persians, Greeks, Kushans, Ghaznavids, Timurids, Mughals, Afghans, British and others. The foreign invaders mainly targeted the most productive central region of the Punjab known as the Majha region, which is also the bedrock of Panjabi culture and traditions. The people of the Punjab today are called Punjabis and their principal language is called Punjabi. The main religions of the Punjab region are Islam, Sikhism and Hinduism. Other religious groups are Christianity, Jainism and Buddhism.
Selected article -
), is a monotheistic
religion originated in the Punjab region
during the 15th century. The fundamental beliefs of Sikhism, articulated in the sacred scripture Guru Granth Sahib
, include faith and meditation on the name of the one creator, unity of all humankind, engaging in selfless service
, striving for social justice for the benefit and prosperity of all
, and honest conduct and livelihood while living a householder's life. Being one of the youngest amongst the major world religions, with 25-28 million adherents worldwide, Sikhism is the ninth-largest religion in the world
Sikhism is based on the spiritual teachings of Guru Nanak, the first Guru, and the ten successive Sikh gurus. After the death of the tenth Guru, Guru Gobind Singh, the Sikh scripture, Guru Granth Sahib, became the literal embodiment of the eternal, impersonal Guru, where the scripture's word serves as the spiritual guide for Sikhs. Sikhism emphasizes simran (meditation on the words of the Guru Granth Sahib), that can be expressed musically through kirtan or internally through Nam Japo (repeat God's name) as a means to feel God's presence, and to have control over the "Five Thieves" (lust, rage, greed, attachment and conceit). Guru Nanak taught that living an "active, creative, and practical life" of "truthfulness, fidelity, self-control and purity" is above the metaphysical truth, and that the ideal man is one who "establishes union with God, knows His Will, and carries out that Will". He also established the system of the langar, or communal kitchen, in order to demonstrate the need to share and have equality between all people. Guru Hargobind, the sixth Sikh Guru, established the political/temporal (Miri) and spiritual (Piri) realms to be mutually coexistent.
Selected biography -
Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale
(2 June 1947 – 6 June 1984) was the leader of the Sikh organization Damdami Taksal
, and a notable supporter of the Anandpur Resolution
. He advocated against the consumption of liquor, drugs and laxness in religious practices, such as the cutting of Kesh
by Sikh youth.
Bhindranwale has been noted for strongly opposing prime minister Indira Gandhi for alleged policies against Punjab during Dharam Yudh Morcha (battle for righteousness). Later that year she ordered the attack on Golden Temple, Sikhism's most sacred Gurdwara, in Amritsar on the martyrdom anniversary of 5th Sikh Guru, Guru Arjan when the complex had pilgrims. Since his death, Bhindranwale has remained a controversial figure in South Asian history. While the Sikhs' highest temporal authority Akal Takht describe him a great martyr of the Sikh Nation, who made supreme sacrifice for the sake of faith, the Indian government views him as an extremist.
Selected picture -
A coin of the Scythian king Azes.
Wikipedia in Punjabi