Sikh Gurus

Guru Nanak (1469 – 1539)

  • Guru Nanak is the 1st Sikh Guru and founder of the Sikhism, who was also a Nirguna Bhakti Saint.
  • He was born in a village of Talwandi (now called Nankana, in Pakisthan), on the banks of the river Ravi in 1469.
  • Guru Nanak was opposed to all distinctions of caste.
  • He is also said to have met Babur.
  • After his death, his followers called themselves ‘Sikhs’ and a new religious sect, Sikhism, was founded.
  • Nanak was followed by nine Sikh gurus.

Guru Angad

  • The 2nd guru, started the Gurumukhi script.
  • He started the tradition of Mall Akhara

Guru Amardas

  • The 3rd guru, began the institution of langar (commonkitchen) to abolish the caste system.
  • Preached against the Hindu society’s sati system and advocated widow-remarriage
  • Asked Akbar to remove the pilgrim’s tax for non-Muslims

Guru Ramdas

  • 4th guru, was given the site of Harmandir at Amritsar by Akbar.
  • Guru Ramdas also laid the foundation stone of Chak Ramdas or Ramdas Pur, now called Amritsar.
  • Composed the four Lawans (stanzas) of the Anand Karaj, a distinct marriage code for Sikhs.

Guru Arjan

  • 5th guru, compiled 1st official edition of Sikh scripture Adi Granth,
  • Later it expanded into the Guru Granth Sahib.
  • Guru Arjan completed the construction of the Harmandir at Amritsar.
  • He installed the Adi Granth inside the new temple in 1604.
  • Guru Arjan was arrested asked to convert to Islam under the orders of Jahangir.
  • He refused, was tortured and executed in 1606.

Guru Hargobind

  • 6th guru, who was also imprisoned by Jahangir for ten years.
  • Longest tenure as Guru.
  • He transformed Sikhs into a militant community, established the Akal Takht, and fortified Amritsar.
  • Defeated a Mughal army at Sangrama.
  • Took the title of Sachcha Padshah.
  • Shifted his headquarters to Kartarpur.
  • Guru Hargobind was the proprietor of the concept of miri and piri

Guru Tegh Bahadur

  • The 9th guru, was executed by Aurangzeb

Guru Gobind Singh

  • 10th and last guru
  • He passed the Guruship of the Sikhs to the Guru Granth Sahib.
  • Established the Khalsa in 1699 at Anandpur Sahib and organised the Sikhs into a military sect.
  • All his sons were killed by a Mughal army at Sirhind, and he was also slain by a Pathan in revenge.
  • The orthodox Sikhs are also distinguished by the five kakka (the five k’s), kesa (top knot), kachha (short drawers), kara (iron bangle), kanga (comb) and kirpan (sword)