Dharmic Religions Contd : Jainism
philosophy has roots in the religious traditions of northern
India. The Sant Mat traditions are fundamental to the teachings
of Sikhism's founder, Nanak. Especially important to the
connection with Sikhism were the teachings of some of the
saints such as Ravidas and Kabir. Sikhism is also inspired
by the emphasis on devotion to God in the traditions of Vaishnavism,
especially through the Bhakti movement, as well as influences
of Sufism. However, Nanak's teachings diverge significantly
from Vaishnavism in their rejection of idol worship. Sikhism
is professed to be a more difficult personal pursuit than
Bhakti. The evolution of Nanak's thoughts on the basis of
his own experiences and study have also given Sikhism a distinctly
unique feature. Scholars have presented Sikhism as both a
distinct faith and a syncretic religion which combines some
elements of Hinduism and Islam.
In Sikhism, God – termed Vahiiguru – is formless, eternal,
and unobserved. Nanak interpreted Vahiiguru as a single,
personal and transcendental creator. The beginning of the
first composition of Sikh scripture is the figure "1"—signifying
the unity of God. To achieve salvation, the devotee must
develop an intimate faith in and relationship with God. God
is omnipresent and infinite, and is signified by the term
that prior to creation, all that existed was God and his infinite
hukam (will). When God willed, the entire cosmos was created.
From these beginnings, God nurtured "enticement and attachment"
to Maya, or the human perception of reality. While a full
understanding of God is beyond human beings, Nanak described
God as not wholly unknowable. God is omnipresent in all creation
and visible everywhere to the spiritually awakened. Nanak
stressed that God must be seen from "the inward eye,"
or the "heart" of a human being: devotees must meditate
to progress towards enlightenment. Nanak emphasised the revelation
through meditation, as its rigorous application permits the
existence of communication between God and human beings.
teachings are founded not on a final destination of
heaven or hell, but on a spiritual union with God which
results in salvation. The chief obstacles to the attainment
of salvation are social conflicts and an attachment
to worldly pursuits, which commit men and women to
an endless cycle of birth - a concept known as karma.
as illusion or "unreality"—is one of the core
deviations from the pursuit of God and salvation - people
are distracted from devotion by worldly attractions
which give only illusive satisfaction. However, Nanak
emphasised Maya as not a reference to the unreality
of the world, but of its values. In Sikhism, the influences
of ego, anger, greed, attachment and lust—known as the
Five Evils—are to be particularly avoided.
The fate of
people vulnerable to the Five Evils is separation from God,
and the situation may be remedied only after intensive and
relentless devotion. Nanak
distinctly emphasised the irrelevance of outwardly observations
such as rites, pilgrimages or asceticism. He stressed that
devotion must take place through the heart, with the spirit
and the soul.
Ten Gurus and Religious Authority
and philosophy of Sikhism were established by ten specific
gurus from 1469 to 1708. Each guru added to and reinforced
the message taught by the previous, resulting in the creation
of the Sikh religion. Guru
Nanak Dev was the first guru and appointed a disciple
as successor. Guru Gobind Singh was the final guru in human
gurus were Nanak Dev, Angad Dev, Amar Das, Ram Das, Arjun
Dev, Har Gobind, Har Rai, Har Krishnan, Teg Bahadur, Gobind
death, the most important phase in the development of Sikhism
came with the third successor, Amar Das. Nanak's teachings
emphasized the pursuit of salvation. Amar Das began building
a cohesive community of followers with initiatives such as
sanctioning distinctive ceremonies for birth, marriage and
death. Amar Das's successor and son-in-law Ram Das founded
the city of Amritsar, which is home of the Harimandir
Sahib and regarded widely as the holiest city for
all Sikhs. Arjun Dev was responsible for compiling the Sikh
scriptures. Arjun Dev was captured by Mughal authorities who
were suspicious and hostile to the religious order he was
developing. His persecution and death inspired his successors
to promote a military and political organisation of Sikh communities
to defend themselves against the attacks of Mughal forces.
two primary sources of scripture for the Sikhs: the Guru Granth
Sahib and the Dasam Granth. The
Guru Granth Sahib may be referred to as the Adi Granth—literally,
The First Volume—and the two terms are often used synonymously.
The Adi Granth refers to the version of the scripture created
by Arjun Dev in 1604. The Guru Granth Sahib refers to the
final version of the scripture created by Gobind Singh.
Resemblance Among Dharmic Religions.
All religions have been greatly influenced by the natural
and historic characteristics of the place, from where they
originated. Dharmic Religions have endless courtesy to the
various cultures that were built and destroyed millions of
years ago in the Indian sub-continent.
darma is the value formed imbibing the aspects of Harappa,
Indus-valley and Dravidian civilization. While Hinduism got
directly linked with the ideas of Sanatana, other Dharmic
Religions questioned some aspects and superstitions in a way
that these protests become the cause for the evolution of
such religions. All Dharmic
Religions conceive the concept of Guru. Buddhism, Jainism
and Sikhism is founded by gurus. The concept of Karma
and samsara and moksha are been mentioned in all except Sikhism.