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Lecture 6

SOC3110 lecture 6

4 Pages

Course Code
SOC 3110

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Lecture 6 – Sikhism • Developed in an area called Punjab • A region with a history of increasing religious conflicts between Hindus and Muslims • Since the 10 century CE, much of North India came under the rule of the Muslims. • The conquest was the most devastating to Buddhists • The Muslims ruled over 500 hundred years • The Mughal Empire controlled northern and central India from 1526 to 1707 • Seen as the second era of Muslim rule • In the first century, the Mughal rule was peaceful, giving rise to Indo-Islamic culture in architecture and fine arts (e.g. The Taj Mahal ) • Both Hinduism and Islam existed, though sometimes with conflicts • Both religions share an appreciation for religious devotion and the attainment of mystical states • In Hinduism, there were the devotees of bhakti yoga. In Islam, there was “Sufism”, the Islamic mystical tradition (some scholars maintain that Sufism derived much early inspiration from Hinduism) • Both religions recognize the important role of a spiritual master • There was also the North Indian “Sant tradition” - (the term “Sant” may carry the meaning of “holy ascetic”, “truth” or “saint”) • Three elements contributed to the rise of the Sant tradition: • 1. Bhakti or devotional practice • 2. Tantric yoga • 3. Sufism • There were many influential Sant poets, including Namdev, Ravidas, Kabir • The first teacher: Nanak (1469-1539) • Composed more than 900 hymns, compiled as the Adi Granth. He said he had experienced God directly, and the experience revealed to him was that: there is only one God, beyond all names and conceptions • Referred to the fundamental divine reality as the “Sat Guru” (True Teacher) or “Om kara” (Divine One). Insisted that God should be experienced, rather than talked about • There is no Hindu and there is no Muslim (note that the movement did not bring into consideration Jainism and Buddhism). • Nanak and his friend Mardana visited the holy sites throughout northern India • Nanak preached, sought disciples (“Sikh”), and sang devotional songs, while Mardana played musical accompaniment • Note: Nanak was raised in a Hindu family, while Mardana was a Muslim • Style of clothing of Nanak: Deliberately blended Hindu and Muslim elements. Wore a Hindu dhoti, along with an orange Muslim coat and cap, and adorned his forehead with Hindu religious markings (tilak) • Sensing his own end approaching at age 70, Nanak passed on his authority and work to a chosen disciple • Nanak is commonly called “Guru Nanak”, and is recognized as the first of a line of “Ten Gurus” • To the academics, Sikhism arose as a response to the conflicts between Hinduism and Islam • To many Sikhs, however, see Sikhism as an entirely unique religion • They speak of Nanak rejected both Islam and Hinuism • And more importantly, they see Sikhism as coming from a totally new revelation • Nanak accepted a belief in reincarnation and karma, though he resis
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