What Is The Significance Of 5Ks

The Five Kakars are :

1. Keshas - Unshorn hair
2. Kangha - Comb
3. Kara - An iron bracelet
4. Kachhehra - Special tailored underwear
5. Kirpan - Sword
An Amritdhari (Baptised by Five Beloved ones) Sikh happily wears these 5 K's all the time.

The Keshas

These are the stamp of Akal Purkh. As he has made other parts of the body so are the keshas. Unshorn keshas are the symbol of living in His will. A sikh should maintain unshorn hair on all parts of his body, right from the toe-tip to the head. In his way he becomes eligible for the God's grace. Guru Arjan Dev Says :
"Saabat Surat Dastaar Sira" (1083)
Long uncut hair, distingguish a Sikh from all others. A Sikh does not trim his hair even if he has to sacrifice his life. His keshas are considered as a gift from the Guru. So he always keeps them neat, clean and duly covered with a Turban to protect them from dirt. A Sikh who trims his Keshas is considered a fallen one and is called Sirgum or Patit. Sikh ladies are also ordained not to trim or pluck their hair or eye-brows. The image of Sikh created by God (Waheguru) as such may be preserved by him. Waheguru has lent spiritual strength to him through the natural growth of hair on his body. These hair act as hidden eloquence of Divinity. All the saints, sages, Prophets and Enlightened souls born on this earth had kept their hair in tact with respect. In compliance with the command of Guru Gobind Singh Ji, a sikh should always show full respect to the hair thinking them as the natural gift of God (Akal Purkh).

The Kangha

A Kangha is used for cleaning the hair. A Sikh always keep his Kanga in his hair. A wooden kanga is universally used by Sikhs. Sikhs comb hair twice a day-morning and evening. The Kangha is equally reminiscent of cleanliness of mind and heart both. Cleaning of mind and heart is possible only through recitation of or listening to Gurbani and service of man - the truthful way of life as shown by Guru Sahib. Physical development alone is not enough. Conscious efforts will have to be made in order to achieve spiritual uplift which is possible only through the purity of mind and heart together. Thinking Kanga to be an integral part of the body it should always be kept inside the hair.

The Kara

Every sikh wears Kara. It is a bracelet made of steel/iron. It is adorned on the right hand of a sikh. It reminds him of his spiritual relationship having been established with Guru. And now he belongs to Guru. This bracelet made of steel symbolises his steel like impregnable resolution and inner strength of soul. It always warns him against doing any evil deed (misdeed) with his hands and feet. There is another old belief of the people that all the evil spirits get sacred away from a person wearing a bracelet made of steel. Any one (a gursikh) who has established his relationship with Guru, he only belongs tohim as a consequence of which no evil soul can cast its impact on him. The Kara should be only of steel, golden or other metallic bracelets are not considered as sacred by the Guru.

The Kirpan

Sikh has been instructed by the Guru to always keep a sword on his person. Sikhs wear it with a strip of cloth called 'Gatra'. A sikh is always supposed to have it hanging around his waist. It is never detached from the body. At the time of taking bath, it may adorn over his head and while washing his hair it nay be trucked into the bridle.
It is our sacred duty to show full respect to it. It also reminds him of his inner spiritual strength which can be acquired only through the recitation of Divine word 'Waheguru'. It is this strength alone which enables him, though with great conscious efforts, to have control over passions of lust for sin, anger, avarice attachment and pride. In the same way, he can offer protection to humanity by challenging the outer forces of cruelty, tyranny oppression injustice (social, political and economic) Kirpan further beckons that no innocent should be subjected to cruelty and oppression. Sikh equipped with Kirpan created by Guru Gobind Singh Ji stands for peace, justice truth and brotherhood. He is supposed to embrance the entire humanity irrespective of caste, creed, colour, position and nationality. These things alone infuse in him some invincible spiritual strength bestowed upon him by Guru Gobind Singh Ji.
Million-fold vices and sins get naturally destroyed with the equipment of Kirpan, for it stands for purity, peace, justice and truth. At the time of performing Ardas, Kirpan is used for the acceptance and distribution of Karah Prasad and similarly for the acceptance of Langar (food) among the congregation.

The Kachhehra

Every sikh wears an underwear that is specially designed and stiched. It symbolises the high character of the Sikhs. It facilitates him to have control over his carnal desires. It stands for his absolute fidelity towards his wife and how he is to keep up the family discipline while leading a married life in this world. In this way, a Sikh (Male or Female) looks upon every man or woman as his or her brother and sister other than her husband and his wife.
Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh

For those who can understand Punjabi, there is an amazing katha by Gyani Sant Singh Jee Maskeen at www.proudtobesikh.com . On the right hand side, under Gurbani Viakhia Sahit, and its entitled Kakaar.

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh