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What is name of God as per Sikhism Ek Onkar or Waheguru?

Discussion in 'Questions and Answers' started by sajsikh, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. sajsikh

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    Yes it is my first question . As in japuji saheb first two words are "ek onkar satnam" and correct me if i am wrong it means "ek onkar satnam is his only true name" . So i want to ask who used the word "waheguru" first among our gurus. And what is the meaning of it. Is waheguru the name of god or some reference word towards god.

    Any link to the source would be appericiated as only a good reference is most of the time satisfactory. I am looking at origin and use of the aforementioned.
     
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  3. Randip Singh

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    Both means "God"

    Waheguru = ultimate teacher
    Ek Onkaar Satnaam= One Constant or One God and truth is its name.

    A teacher teaches you the TRUTH as well.
     
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  4. sajsikh

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    Thank You Ranjit Singh ji for your quick response . I know the meaning , but going through some "STEAKS -japuji saheb with meanings " has written the meaning "ek onkar hi osda sacha naam hai".
    So i do understand the meaning but what i am trying to say is there is no reference to word Waheguru in Japuji. The only words that i am aware of surely uttered by Guru Nanak ji are Sat Kartar and ek onkar satnam.
    So i am seeking etymology , you can say of word waheguru , which guru has used this word in reference to God in which Baani or at which page of Shri Guru Granth Saheb
     
  5. Luckysingh

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    Waheguru starts with 'wah' as in wah wah as used in praise to something wonderful and appealing.
    So, waheguru literally means wonderful guru or the magnificent lord, wonderful lord almighty....etc..

    We have heard the phrases 'ik onkaar sri waheguru ji ki fateh' and 'waheguru ji ka khalsa, waheguru ji ki fateh' many times.

    I think what you are asking is that Guru Nanak ji never mentioned it in japji.
    Yes, but I'm sure that Gurudid actually use the word along with many other words to describe the almighty.
    It is used as a given gurmantar because it is actually 4 syllaballe word shortened from wa- from vasudevh
    he- from haha-as in hari
    gu- from gobind
    ru- from ra ra as in ram

    all the 4 words are used to refer to the almighty as well.

    Ik onkar satnaam is used to describe him as there is only one truth, that is before all truths, therfore referred as the one and true name.
     
  6. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    A ROSE by any name smells just as SWEET..The SIKH GURUS were no sticklers on particular "names"...thats why you will FIND practically ALL the Names for God ever used..incluidng all the common ones form Hidnuism and ALLAH Rahim etc form islamic world...Its NOT the Name per se that counts..its the PRACTISE of GURBANI...churning WATER produces no BUTTER my friend...churn the MILK...
     
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  7. Kamala

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    God has many names in this religion, like Hari/ Narayan/ Ram/ Govind/ Waheguru etc.
     
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  8. Archived_Member16

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    Names of God in Sikhism

    In Sikhism God is One Universal Entity, the creator, self-illuminated, perpetual and gender-less. He is referred to in the Sikh Scriptures by many hundreds of names. The holy scripture of the Sikhs called the Sri Guru Granth Sahib or Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji begins with the following passage called the Mool Mantar or the "Main Mantra":

    Original Text -Punjabi: ੴ ਸਤਿ ਨਾਮ੝ ਕਰਤਾ ਪ੝ਰਖ੝ ਨਿਰਭਉ ਨਿਰਵੈਰ੝ ਅਕਾਲ ਮੂਰਤਿ ਅਜੂਨੀ ਸੈਭੰ ਗ੝ਰ ਪ੝ਰਸਾਦਿ ॥
    ISO 15919 transliteration: Ika ŝaṅkĝra sati nĝmu karatĝ purakhu nirabha'u niravairu akĝla mūrati ajūnī saibhaṃ gura prasĝdi

    Simplified transliteration: Ik ŝaṅkĝr sat nĝm kartĝ purkh nirbha'u nirvair akĝl mūrat ajūnī saibhaṃ gur prasĝd ||

    English: One God. Truth is His name. Creative Being Personified. No Fear. No Malice. Image Of The Undying, Beyond Birth, Self-Existent. By Guru's Grace ~

    The English translation uses 'His' or 'He' when referring to God. Sikhism does not recognise God as being of either sex and the original Punjabi version reflects this by being gender neutral.

    The Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji says the following about God: "You have so many Names, Lord, I do not know their limit. There is no other equal to You." (Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji page 877).

    A testament to the above, is the the 10th Guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji's hymn, the Jaap Sahib, which is a list of many names of God, comprised 199 verses.
    Waheguru is the main and true name used for God in Sikhism

    The Sikhs believe that Allah - The name of God used by Muslim is a valid name to use. Similarly, the name Raam, Paarbrahm, Krishan which are names of God used by Hindus are frequently mentioned in the Sikh holy scriptures. The same God of the Christians, Muslims, Hindus, etc is the Akal Purakh, the primal being of the Sikhs.

    You fashioned all these men and women, Lord. All these are Your Forms. Kabeer is the child of God, Allah, Raam. All the Gurus and prophets are mine. (5) Says Kabeer, listen, O men and women: seek the Sanctuary of the One. Chant the Naam, the Name of the Lord, O mortals, and you shall surely be carried across. ((6)(2))
    - Sri Guru Granth Sahib page 1349

    Sikh names for God

    However, some of the popular names for God are:

    - Akal Purakh meaning Timeless Primal Being. "Akal" stands for 'Primal, timeless' and "Purakh" stands for 'Being'

    - Ek Onkar meaning One Creator. "Ek" means "One"; "Onkar" means "Creator".

    - Satnam meaning True Name, some are of the opinion that this is a name for God in itself, others believe that this is an adjective used to describe the 'Gurmantar', Waheguru (See below)

    - Waheguru, meaning Wonderful Teacher, this name is considered the greatest among Sikhs, and it is known as 'Gurmantar', the Guru's Word.

    - Bhao Khandan meaning Destroyer of Fear

    - Dukh Bhanjno meaning Dispeller of Pain

    - Bhagat Vachhal meaning Lover of His Saints

    - Hari meaning Glowing, Shining, Vitalising - Absolute Name of God

    - Govinda meaning Preserver of the World

    - Bhagavan meaning Lord or Supreme being

    - Rabh

    - Allah word commonly used by Muslims to refer to God.

    - Uppar Valah

    - Malik

    God according to Guru Nanak is beyond full comprehension by humans; has endless number of virtues; takes on innumerable forms; and can be called by an infinite number of names thus "Your Names are so many, and Your Forms are endless. No one can tell how many Glorious Virtues You have." (Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji page 358)

    source: http://www.sikhiwiki.org/index.php/Names_of_God
     
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  9. sajsikh

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    I am thankful for your response. I am intrigued that sikhiwiki also dosent have correct meanings. Because if waheguru is one and only true name of the lord , then ek onkar satnam becomes invalid. Intriguingly waheguru was not a word used by guru nanak ji rectify me with an example.

    Second point is rather controversial and i didnt want to start some controversy but what does this line means
    Does it mean kabir is above all. And its interpretations like these are used by one rampal ji maharaj in harayana and it makes him claim kabir was guru of guru nanak. As an evidence he has lot cut outs and prints available you can see. ill post it in controversy section now. So my question is still that has guru nanak used word "waheguru" and if not than dosent it mean ek onkar satnam is the one real name of god.
     
  10. Harry Haller

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    Veerji

    These are pointless arguments, Creator is Creator, regardless of what you, or anyone else calls it.

    This is a similar situation to front line soldiers debating the middle name of the King. It is irrelevant, we are here to do a job, live a life as per Hukam, names mean nothing. Names are for tombstones baby! (quoted from live and let die lol )
     
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  11. sajsikh

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    Re: What is name of god as per sikhism ek onkar or waheguru

    Respected khalsa ji ,

    I would like to point out that please dont consider my thread as an argument. Consider it as a question of a technical nature. And we know there must be answer to any and all questions technical, emotional , or differential point of views.

    The thing i am seeking is to get a HISTORICAL reference of the WORD waheguru. Because the very first words of my guru granth sahib are ek onkar satnam.

    so if i am pôsting my lifes question to god even though i know i can call him anything but still i prefer to address my words of request on the right address. And i consider the words of Guru Nanak as giving me the right address of god. But there is little confusion about two words. Because one word is surely that came out of guru nanak jis own mouth èk onkar `why he didnt say waheguru. That is an intriguing question for me .

    And regarding creator i believe if i start worshipping my parents i am worshipping god himself. So i mean i am seeking a real historical reference and not generalised theoratical answers
     
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  12. Harry Haller

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    Good luck to you brother, I hope you have an enjoyable quest.
     
  13. Ishna

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    Max Arthur MacAuliffe makes a few references to 'Wahguru' (take note of the spelling) in The Sikh Religion volume 1, available here: http://www.sacred-texts.com/skh/tsr1/index.htm

    You'll have to do a CTRL-F and search for the word 'Wah' on each page until you find the references - I can't remember exactly which chapters they're in.

    However the references appear in some rather unusual sakhis and I'm suspicious of the reality of the stories, and consequently the references.

    Go to www.srigranth.org and search the transliteration for the word 'vah' - very interesting reading.

    You can also search the transliteration for the word 'vahguru' for 3 references, but not by Guru Nanak ji.

    I agree with Harry ji that the actual name of the creative force is not important. It is beyond names. There is no 'one true name'.
     
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    #12 Ishna, Jul 6, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2012
  14. Astroboy

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  15. Ishna

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    Having said that a particular name is not important, I can see how it becomes a real question. Bani mentions Naam constantly. Chant Naam, remember Naam, Naam is Nanak's only support, etc. It is translated as 'name' literally. That is indeed the meaning of the word 'Naam'.

    In the Sikh case, Naam refers to awareness of the creative force. It is beyond names and beyond description. Even to say It is beyond description is an injustice! Recognising And cultivating awareness of the Truth is what Naam is. Maintaining that awareness is simran. As is my very limited understanding. I hope that helps.

    It is impossible to describe.
     
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  16. Kanwaljit Singh

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    If you sit and think about Waheguru, will he not listen to your thoughts?
     
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  17. Ishna

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    The Jyot within you will listen.
     
  18. Luckysingh

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    Well, I don't get a direct reply to prove it, I'm more than certain he listens to not just my inner voice but my feelings and wishes are all picked up and acknowledged.
    You don't even have to address him by name, he answers to any given or preferred name.
     
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  19. Luckysingh

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    I admire that reply as it speaks much more, to my understanding.
    I won't repeat myself here, but I have mentioned my interpretation and just a little understanding to the terms 'jyot swaroop' and 'naam' in the following threads.
    Have a read and see what you make of this slight emphasis on these referred terms.

    http://www.sikhphilosophy.net/gurmat-vichaar/37605-naam-jap-simran-and-naam-simran-4.html

    and also

    http://www.sikhphilosophy.net/sikh-sikhi-sikhism/37982-naam-abhiyaas.html

    Sat Kartar
    Lucky Singh
     
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  20. Archived_member15

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    I don't think that we should get too fixated with names :)

    I'll tell you a story as to why we shouldn't...


    “And holy is His name”. The name of God is said to be holy, not because it contains in its syllables any special virtue, but because in whatsoever way we contemplate God, we see Him pure and holy.

    - St. Basil the Great, On Psalm 32.



    "...There was a time when God had no name, and there will be a time when he will have no name...."

    - St. Isaac the Syrian, Unpublished Chapters on Knowledge, III,1, syr e7, Bodleian.



    "...Remember, the power is not in the word, not in the name, but in God Himself, Who is named..."

    St. Barsanuphius of Optina



    This debate about the name is eeirly familiar to me. In fact it nearly caused a major rift in the Eastern Catholic (Orthodox) Church during the early 1900s. No kidding. It was called the heresy of "Name-Worshippers" or "Imiaslavie" in Russian.

    The 20th century history of Imiaslavie started in 1907 with the publication of the book On the Caucasus Mountains by a revered starets, Schema-monk Illarion. In his book, Illarion told of his spiritual experience with the Jesus Prayer as a proof that 'The name of God is God Himself and can produce miracles. God exists in his name'.

    In and of itself, apart from the ludicrous idea of miracles, there was nothing about what it said that was wrong but what happened next was the problem.

    The book became extremely popular among the Russian monks on Mount Athos in Greece.

    Many of them argued that, since according to Plato, "the name of an object exists since before the object itself does," so the name of God must pre-exist before the world was created, and that it (the Name) cannot be anything but God Himself. Among other things, this was thought to mean that knowledge of the secret name of God alone allows one to perform miracles (a similar concept exists in Kabbalah). This group of monks became fixated with the actual syllables of the word "Name", thinking it contained God Himself in all his power.

    The opponents of Imiaslavie, the other Athonite monks, considered this teaching to be pantheistic and incompatible with Christianity - and they were of course correct, it was an abuse of the concept. They argued that before the Creation God did not need this name, so the name was created and is actually an empty sound having no mystical attributes in and of itself. The proponents of this idea got the name Imyaslavtsy (those who glorify the Name) and its opponents were called Imyabortsy (those who fight the Name).

    This teaching was disseminated among the Russian Athonian monks. This new-found belief obtained another apologist in the person of Fr. Anthony Boulatovic, a former tsarist army officer. The disputes among the Russian Athonians were severe. The Name-Worshippers managed to elect the Dikaios (Abbot) of the Skete of St. Andrew. Abbot Misael of St. Panteleimon's monastery and also Boulatovic both addressed Ecumenical Patriarch Joachim III who condemned Name-Worshipping. In his letter to Abbot Misael dated September 12, 1912 where among other things he says "We paternally, sternly and immediately command those monks there who thoughtlessly theologize, invent and introduce the deluded theory of the name to withdraw from this soul-destroying delusion…" he also forbade the reading of the book "Upon the Mountains of the Caucasus."
    But Boulatovic remained in his beliefs. He published books such as "A Defense" and "Concerning the Name of God" (in Greek) and various letters.

    Among other things Boulatovic maintained that:
    • "The name is God"
    • "The words heard by the Apostles on Tabor are God himself"
    • "The words heard by the Israelites on Sinai are God himself"
    • "The Grace of God is present in the hearings and the writings of God's name"
    In other words, it is sufficient for one to call upon the name of God (even without faith, unconsciously) and God is obliged to be present with this person through His Grace and to fulfill his petition! :angryyoungkaur:

    The Name-Worshippers were declared as heretics. They resisted, naturally this label.

    The most vocal opponent was the archbishop of Volyn, Anthony who considered imiaslavie to be a variation of the heresy propounded by the Khlysts. In 1912, by decision of the Holy Synod, the book On the Caucasus Mountains became forbidden in Russia. It was not reprinted until 1998.

    In January 1913 a monk by the name of David, who was a supporter of imiaslavie, was elected as the hegumen of the Andreyevsky skete, taking the place of the monk Hieronim who was an opponent of it. Hieronim did not recognize the results of the elections and complained to the Russian Embassy in Greece. The Imperial Government insisted on changing the hegumen back to Hieronim. In April the teaching of imiaslavie was also proclaimed to be heretical by the new Patriarch Germanus V of Constantinople.

    A crisis ensued.

    In June 1913 a small Russian fleet, consisting of the gunboat Donets and the transport ships Tsar and Kherson, delivered the archbishop of Vologda, Nikon (Rozhdestvensky), and a number of troops to Mount Athos. The poll organized by the archbishop had shown that among 1700 of St. Panteleimon Monastery's monks, 661 monks identified themselves as imiabortsy, 517 as imiaslavtsy, 360 refused to participate in the poll, and the rest identified themselves as neutral. In May and June archbishop Nikon held talks with the Name-Worshippers and tried to convince them to change their beliefs voluntarily, but was unsuccessful. On July 31 the troops stormed the monastery. Although the monks were not armed and did not actively resist, the troops showed very heavy-handed tactics. They set up two machine guns and a number of water cannons, and the soldiers were ordered to beat the monks with their bayonets and rifle butts. Allegedly, four monks were killed and at least forty-eight were wounded.

    No one could believe it. Mount Athos, the holiest place in Eastern Catholicism, an island that had never been touched save by monks and their privileged visitors, had just been attacked by a fleet of Russian ships. Peaceful monks, wrapt in spiritual experiences, were now confronted with their age-old monasteries being stormed by troops firing at them with machine guns.

    And all this fighting had erupted over - of all things - the "Name" of God!!!!!

    After the storming of St. Panteleimon Monastery the monks from the Andreevsky Skete surrendered voluntarily.

    The military transport Kherson was converted into a prison ship. It took 628 monks to Russia and on July 9 set sail to Odessa. Forty monks were left in the Mt. Athos hospital, judged unable to survive the transportation. On July 14 the steamship Chikhachev delivered another 212 monks from Mt. Athos. The rest of the monks signed papers that they rejected the imiaslavie.

    To this day, some Bishops still support the Name-Worshippers. Recently books have been written trying to demonstrate the mathematical implications of the Name.

    We should not worship names. God is nameless and above all his names. By focusing too much on specific names we can lose God in the process and lapse into magical fairytales like the Name-Worshippers.

    Let the the tragic story of the Name-Worshippers teach us! kaurhug
     
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  21. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    SATNAM is TRUTH..and please guys..its NOT "His Name"....and you DONT NEED to CALL HIM..He cna hear WITHOUT BEING CALLED..He is NOT HUMAN/ANIMAL..that can ONLY come when Called by name !!

    SATNAM- TRUTH means PRACTISE TRUTH...SATNAAM. PERIOD. A Lawyer I know is Named SATNAAM SINGH....but he is a BIGGER LIER than even most Lawyers...meaning he has NO TRUTH in his practise, in his daily life, in his dealings..he is NO "Satnaam"..BUT he carries around an I-POD with a LOOPED Mool Mantar downloaded from some website and is always PLUGGED IN !! When you approach him..he will "apologize..unplug the ear plugs..and LIES will spew out of his MOUTH...until you leave and he plugs in the Waheguru/Moolmantar/simran Ipod again".....

    IN GURMATT...SIKHI...GURBANi..SGGS....its ALL about PRACTISE and ACTION...ONLY.period. The Bhagats PRACTISED..the GURUS PRACTISED..the SIKHS PRACTISED...and thus you cna watch Bhagat Namdev tied down in front of a mad stomping elephant and CALM....Guur Arjun ji seated on a sizzling Hot plate being fried alive like a burger..and CALM...Bhai Mati dass being SAWED ALIVE..and CALM...becasue THEY ALL PRACTISED the NAAM....they had so much NAAM....as in PRACTISE MAKES PERFECT.....we must endeavour to be PERFECT as Bhai mani Singh, Bhai Deep Singh Bhai Amreek Singh bahi Bhinderawallah..etc etc..
     
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