Sikhism Interest Studies Project - Year Twelve

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What are the origins of Sikhism and how has it developed? 11465382 Sikhism, in terms of beliefs, has its basic origins in Hinduism, whilst simultaneously being sympathetic to the Islamic faith. However, it has been the leaders (called gurus) of Sikhism that have influenced its inception and development over time. This Interest Studies Project will discuss how Sikhism begun with Guru Nanak ( b. 1469), and the influence of the following ten gurus, especially Guru Gobind Singh and the Guru Granth Sahib.

Guru Nanak was born in a village in the Punjab called Talwandi (later renamed Nankana Sahib) in 1469 CE. He was born a Hindu of the Kshatriya caste (a warrior caste) but his experiences led him to oppose this system, Islam and Hinduism.

Historical accuracy has not been established regarding the stories of Guru Nanak and his life, but for Sikhs, these stories still provide a clear path to learn more about spiritual truth.

One of the more important stories regarding Nanak is that of his epiphany .

He was deeply moved by this experience and it prompted him to begin a period of travel (around twenty years), where he taught and preached about the insignificance of ritual and formality and the importance of religious truth. Nanak's aim was to lead people toward truth in finding God, but not within the ritual and formal nature of the structured religions of Islam or Hinduism.

He attracted a number of followers and soon found himself the leader of a large community. At the age of around fifty he settled at Kartarpur with this community, which was the first example of Sikh lifestyle. Guru Nanak constructed a building specifically for worship in this town, which was to become the gurdwara of Sikhism today.

These were the beginnings of a religious...