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Women In Sikhism


Oct 25, 2006
Women In Sikhism

According to Guru Nanak, women as a part of the divine creation could not be the carriers of pollution, nor could they be the object of man’s lust and violence for vahiguru (the lord )views men and women as equal.

BMif jMmIAY BMif inMmIAY BMif mMgxu vIAwhu ] (473-8, Awsw, mÚ 1)
bhand jammee-ai bhand nimmee-ai bhand mangan vee-aahu.
From woman, man is born; within woman, man is conceived; to woman he is engaged
and married.
BMfhu hovY dosqI BMfhu clY rwhu ] (473-8, Awsw, mÚ 1)
bhandahu hovai dostee bhandahu chalai raahu.
Woman becomes his friend; through woman, the future generations come.
BMfu muAw BMfu BwlIAY BMif hovY bMDwnu ] (473-8, Awsw, mÚ 1)
bhand mu-aa bhand bhaalee-ai bhand hovai banDhaan.
When his woman dies, he seeks another woman; to woman he is bound.
so ikau mMdw AwKIAY ijqu jMmih rwjwn ] (473-9, Awsw, mÚ 1)
so ki-o mandaa aakhee-ai jit jameh raajaan.
So why call her bad? From her, kings are born.


siB Gt Awpy BogvY ipAwrw ivic nwrI purK sBu soie ] (605-6, soriT, mÚ 4)
sabh ghat aapay bhogvai pi-aaraa vich naaree purakh sabh so-ay.
The Beloved Himself enjoys every heart; He is contained within every woman and

Guru Nanak writes emphatically about being the appropriate arena of liberation which further assigns a position of considerable importance to women as guarantors of a peaceful, well-organized household.

Guru nanak’s successors continued in his belief in the importance of the family and home in the pursuit of liberation. Guru Amardas denounced the custom of widow burning.

kMqw nwil mhylIAw syqI Aig jlwih ] (787-10, sUhI, mÚ 3)
kantaa naal mahaylee-aa saytee ag jalaahi.
The widows burn themselves in the fire, along with their husbands' corpses.
jy jwxih ipru Awpxw qw qin duK shwih ] (787-11, sUhI, mÚ 3)
jay jaaneh pir aapnaa taa tan dukh sahaahi.
If they truly knew their husbands, then they suffer terrible bodily pain.
nwnk kMq n jwxnI sy ikau Aig jlwih ] (787-11, sUhI, mÚ 3)
naanak kant na jaannee say ki-o ag jalaahi.
O Nanak, if they did not truly know their husbands, why should they burn themselves
in the fire?
BwvY jIvau kY mrau dUrhu hI Bij jwih ]3] (787-12, sUhI, mÚ 3)
bhaavai jeeva-o kai mara-o Dhoorahu hee bhaj jaahi. ||3||
Whether their husbands are alive or dead, those wives remain far away from them.

Respect for women is also reflected in repeated edicts against visiting prostitutes, mistreating the women of one’s enemies defeated in battle and against having interactions with those who kill their daughters.

The rahit literature stressed women’s full participation in religious life. They were expected to be the best informed member of the household and able to instruct their husbands and children in matters of belief and practice.

Notable Sikh women – sada kaur, rani jinda, mai bhago, mata sunder kaur.


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