The Sikh religion is strictly monotheistic, believing in One Supreme God. Absolute yet All-pervading, the Eternal, the Creator, the Cause of Causes, without enmity, without hate, both Immanent in His creation and beyond it. He is no longer the God of one nation, but the God of Grace. That being so, He creates man not to punish him for his sins, but for the realisation of his true purpose in the cosmos and to merge in from where he issues forth. Like a drop of rain merges back into the ocean.
O my mind, you are the embodiment of the Divine Light, recognize your own origin. O my mind, the Dear Lord is with you; through the Guru’s Teachings, enjoy His Love. Acknowledge your origin, and then you shall know your Husband Lord, and so understand birth and death.
- Guru Granth Sahib p. 441
The basic belief in Sikhism is that life is not sinful in its origin, but having emanated from a pure source, the True One abides in all.
Not only does all Sikh philosophy, but the whole of Sikh history and character flows from this principle.
The Sikhs do not recognise the caste system, nor do they believe in Idol-worship, rituals, or superstitions. The religion consists of practical living, in rendering service to humanity and engendering tolerance and brotherly love towards all.
The Sikh Gurus did not advocate isolation from the world in order to attain salvation or enlightenment. It can be achieved by any one who earns and honest living and leads a normal life.
One who works for what he eats, and gives some of what he has–O Nanak, he knows the way.
-Guru Granth Sahib p. 1245
Guru Nanak gave new hope to the down-trodden to join his fraternity as equals. He is a creater of the new man in the new world supported by a new morality.
Riches and personal possessions are not a hindrance in living by spiritual ideals. Sikhism does not believe in the maxim, “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.” On the other hand, the Sikh dictum is:
Says Nanak, by Guru’s Grace, those who enshrine love for the Lord find Him, in the midst of Maya (wealth and worldliness).
Guru Granth Sahib p. 921
Sikhism does not accept the ideology of pessimism. It advocates optimism and hope. The saying, “Resist not evil but whosoever shall smite thee on the right cheek, turn to him the other also,” does not find any place in the Sikh way of life. On the other hand Sikhs follow:
When an affair is past every other remedy, it is righteous to unsheath the sword.
- Guru Gobind Singh
Sikhs have an honor bound duty, at the risk of their own lives, to save others from danger and oppression and to stand up for their own, as well as others’, beliefs.