What are the key practices/beliefs of Sikhs?
The word ‘Guru’ means teacher, honoured person, religious person or saint in Sanskrit – in Sikhism it means the ‘descent of divine guidance to mankind provided through ten Enlightened Masters’. Sikhism is based on the teachings of Guru Nanak and the teachings of the other nine gurus who were his successors. The Sikh holy scriptures are written in the Guru Granth Sahib and are respected by all Sikhs as the word of God. They are written in Punjab and contain the teaching and writings of the ten Gurus as well as some Sikh, Hindu and Muslim saints. A Sikh place of worship is any building where the Guru Granth Sahib is kept and it is called the Gurdwara – Gateway to the Guru. Most services in the UK are held on a Sunday, although there is no special day on which to celebrate – all days are equal. To become a Sikh and join the Khalsa, which means ‘Community of the Pure’, individuals need to follow the ‘panj kakke’ (Five Ks): • Kesh: not cutting hair – this indicates holiness and submission t