One-minute read. Written by a grade 5 student
Gurupurab is a festival which is celebrated by Sikhs. It celebrates the birth date of the first Sikh guru, and founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak Dev Ji. This is why this festival is also known as Guru Nanak Jayanti.
Why did Guru Nanak Dev Ji found Sikhism?
Guru Nanak Dev Ji thought very differently from the two main religions at that time, Hinduism and Islam. Guru Nanak Dev Ji thought very differently from the two main religions at that time, Hinduism and Islam. Therefore, he felt the need to create a new religion, Sikhism.
He spoke against the unfair practices of casteism and also spoke against the rich people who thought they were superior. Guru Nank Ji also said that women are equal to men – which was not believed at that time. He did not believe in division between people on the basis of caste, colour, religion and race. He said there was one God. He believed in universal brotherhood, love, humility, simplicity, equality and tolerance.
Therefore, he felt the need to create a new religion, Sikhism. This religion had beliefs like equality, women’s rights, respect and inner truth. He used music and poetry to spread his messages of love and equality. He went on long journeys to far places to spread his teachings. He also used Punjabi as it was a language that most people understood and not Sanskrit or Arabic as the Hindu priests and Muslim clerics used at that time – which was only understood by the upper classes.
How did Guru Nanak Dev Ji found Sikhism?
Every day, Guru Nanak Dev Ji used to bathe in the river and meditate afterwards. One morning, as usual he went to bathe in the river. He did not come back to meditate as he should have. For three full days he could not be found. Everyone thought he drowned, except his sister who was sure he would come back. He had actually gone to meditate and after three days he returned and said that all religions are the same, as they lead to god, and there is only one god.
Guru Nanak Ji believed in three pillars of Sikhism: Work, Worship and Sharing – Kirat Karni, Naam Japna, and Vand Chakhna. Kirat karni is earning one’s livelihood with honest labour. Naam japna is to recite and repeat the name of God. Vand chakhna is to share and care.
Let us remember his teachings on this auspicious day!