Skip to main content

Ten Sikh Gurus and Their Teachings

  • Author:
  • Updated date:
Read on to learn about Sikhism, the ten Sikh Gurus, and the teachings of the Guru Granth Sahib.

Read on to learn about Sikhism, the ten Sikh Gurus, and the teachings of the Guru Granth Sahib.

What Is Sikhism?

Sikhism is a monotheistic religion that originated in the Punjab region of India in the 15th century. It was founded by Guru Nanak Dev Ji and is based on his teachings and those of nine subsequent Gurus.

The central belief of Sikhism is that there is only one God, who is the same for all people and all religions. Sikhs believe in the equality of all people and reject the caste system, which divides people into social classes based on their birth.

Sikhs follow the teachings of the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. The Guru Granth Sahib contains the teachings of the Sikh Gurus as well as the writings of other religious figures from a variety of traditions.

Sikhs are known for their commitment to social justice and helping those in need. They follow the principle of seva, or selfless service, and many Sikhs volunteer their time and resources to help those in need.

Sikhs also follow the Five Ks, a set of five articles of faith that are worn by initiated Sikhs. These include kesh (uncut hair), kara (a steel bracelet), kanga (a wooden comb), kaccha (a special type of underwear), and kirpan (a sword).

Sikhism is a major world religion with millions of followers around the globe. It is the fifth-largest religion in the world and is practiced by people of many different cultures and nationalities.

the-sikh-gurus-and-their-teachings

The Sikh Gurus

The Sikh Gurus are the spiritual leaders of the Sikh religion. There have been ten Sikh Gurus in total, beginning with Guru Nanak Dev Ji and ending with Guru Gobind Singh Ji.

  1. Guru Nanak Dev Ji (1469-1539) was the founder of the Sikh faith and the first Guru. He preached the concept of one God and the equality of all people, and his teachings form the foundation of the Sikh religion.
  2. Guru Angad Dev Ji (1504-1552) was the second Guru of the Sikhs and succeeded Guru Nanak Dev Ji. He introduced the Gurmukhi script, which is used to write the Punjabi language and is used in Sikh scriptures.
  3. Guru Amar Das Ji (1479-1574) was the third Guru of the Sikhs. He established the concept of langar, the communal kitchen where people of all backgrounds and religions could come together to eat.
  4. Guru Ram Das Ji (1534-1581) was the fourth Guru of the Sikhs. He founded the city of Amritsar, which is now a major center of the Sikh religion.
  5. Guru Arjan Dev Ji (1563-1606) was the fifth Guru of the Sikhs. He compiled the Sikh holy scripture, the Guru Granth Sahib, and established the Golden Temple in Amritsar.
  6. Guru Har Gobind Ji (1595-1644) was the sixth Guru of the Sikhs. He was the first Guru to take up arms in defense of the Sikh community, and he is known for his military leadership and political acumen.
  7. Guru Har Rai Ji (1630-1661) was the seventh Guru of the Sikhs. He was a spiritual leader and worked to spread the teachings of the Sikh Gurus.
  8. Guru Har Krishan Ji (1656-1664) was the eighth Guru of the Sikhs. He was a young boy when he became Guru, and he is known for his compassion and generosity.
  9. Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji (1621-1675) was the ninth Guru of the Sikhs. He was a spiritual leader and warrior who fought for the rights of Hindus and Sikhs in India.
  10. Guru Gobind Singh Ji (1666-1708) was the tenth and final Guru of the Sikhs. He established the Khalsa, a community of initiated Sikhs, and created the Five Ks, the symbols of the Sikh faith. He is also known for his military leadership and his role in defending the Sikh community against persecution.

1. Guru Nanak Dev Ji

Guru Nanak Dev Ji (1469-1539) was the founder of the Sikh religion and the first of the ten Sikh Gurus. He was born in the village of Talwandi, which is now known as Nankana Sahib in Pakistan.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji was a spiritual leader and teacher who preached the concept of one God and the equality of all people. He traveled extensively throughout India and other parts of Asia, spreading his teachings and establishing centers of worship known as gurdwaras.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji's teachings are considered to be the foundation of the Sikh religion. He believed in the existence of one God who is the same for all people and all religions. He rejected the caste system and other forms of social inequality, and he taught that everyone has the potential to achieve spiritual enlightenment through devotion and service to God.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji's teachings are recorded in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. His birthday, known as Gurpurab, is celebrated with great devotion by Sikhs around the world. Guru Nanak Dev Ji is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by millions of people around the world.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji

Guru Nanak Dev Ji

2. Guru Angad Dev Ji

Guru Angad Dev Ji (1504-1552) was the second Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Nanak Dev Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Angad Dev Ji was born in the village of Harike in Punjab, India. He was a devoted disciple of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by him to be his successor.

Guru Angad Dev Ji is known for his contributions to the Sikh faith, including the development of the Gurmukhi script, which is used to write the Punjabi language and is used in Sikh scriptures. He also established the system of gurdwaras, or Sikh places of worship, and introduced the concept of langar, the communal kitchen where people of all backgrounds and religions could come together to eat.

Guru Angad Dev Ji's teachings and writings are recorded in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Angad Dev Ji

Guru Angad Dev Ji

3. Guru Amar Das Ji

Guru Amar Das Ji (1479-1574) was the third Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Angad Dev Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Amar Das Ji was born in the village of Basarke in Punjab, India. He was a devout follower of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by Guru Angad Dev Ji to be his successor.

Guru Amar Das Ji is known for his contributions to the Sikh faith, including the establishment of the concept of langar, the communal kitchen where people of all backgrounds and religions could come together to eat. He also introduced the practice of assigning hymns to be sung on specific days of the week, and he established the system of masands, or regional representatives of the Guru, to spread the teachings of the Sikh Gurus throughout the region.

Guru Amar Das Ji's teachings and writings are recorded in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Amar Das Ji

Guru Amar Das Ji

4. Guru Ram Das Ji

Guru Ram Das Ji (1534-1581) was the fourth Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Amar Das Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Ram Das Ji was born in the village of Lahore in present-day Pakistan. He was a devout follower of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by Guru Amar Das Ji to be his successor.

Guru Ram Das Ji is known for his contributions to the Sikh faith, including the founding of the city of Amritsar, which is now a major center of the Sikh religion. He also established the practice of reciting the Japji Sahib, a hymn composed by Guru Nanak Dev Ji, as part of the daily Sikh prayer ritual.

Guru Ram Das Ji's teachings and writings are recorded in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Ram Das Ji

Guru Ram Das Ji

5. Guru Arjan Dev Ji

Guru Arjan Dev Ji (1563-1606) was the fifth Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Ram Das Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Arjan Dev Ji was born in the village of Goindval in Punjab, India. He was a devout follower of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by Guru Ram Das Ji to be his successor.

Guru Arjan Dev Ji is known for his contributions to the Sikh faith, including the compilation of the Sikh holy scripture, the Guru Granth Sahib. He collected and compiled the teachings of the first four Sikh Gurus, as well as those of other religious figures from Hindu and Muslim traditions, and organized them into the scripture that is now considered to be the eternal Guru of the Sikhs.

Guru Arjan Dev Ji is also known for establishing the Golden Temple in Amritsar, India, which is now a major center of the Sikh religion. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Arjan Dev Ji

Guru Arjan Dev Ji

6. Guru Har Gobind Ji

Guru Har Gobind Ji (1595-1644) was the sixth Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Arjan Dev Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Har Gobind Ji was born in the village of Wadali in Punjab, India. He was a devout follower of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by Guru Arjan Dev Ji to be his successor.

Guru Har Gobind Ji is known for his contributions to the Sikh faith, including his military leadership and political acumen. He was the first Guru to take up arms in defense of the Sikh community, and he is remembered for his bravery and valor in battle.

Guru Har Gobind Ji is also known for establishing the Akal Takht, the throne of the eternal Guru, in the Golden Temple in Amritsar, India. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Har Gobind Ji

Guru Har Gobind Ji

7. Guru Har Rai Ji

Guru Har Rai Ji (1630-1661) was the seventh Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Har Gobind Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Har Rai Ji was born in the village of Kiratpur in Punjab, India. He was a devout follower of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by Guru Har Gobind Ji to be his successor.

Guru Har Rai Ji is known for his contributions to the Sikh faith, including his role in spreading the teachings of the Sikh Gurus throughout the region. He was a spiritual leader and worked to promote the values of compassion, kindness, and service to others.

Guru Har Rai Ji is also remembered for his refusal to take part in the political conflicts of the time and for his efforts to maintain the neutrality of the Sikh community. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Har Rai Ji

Guru Har Rai Ji

8. Guru Har Krishan Ji

Guru Har Krishan Ji (1656-1664) was the eighth Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Har Rai Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Har Krishan Ji was born in the village of Kiratpur in Punjab, India. He was a young boy when he became Guru and is known for his compassion and generosity.

Guru Har Krishan Ji is remembered for his efforts to alleviate the suffering of those affected by a smallpox epidemic that swept through India during his time as Guru. He is also known for his role in the development of the Harmandir Sahib, also known as the Golden Temple, in Amritsar, India.

Guru Har Krishan Ji's teachings and writings are recorded in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Har Krishan Ji

Guru Har Krishan Ji

9. Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji

Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji (1621-1675) was the ninth Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Har Krishan Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji was born in the village of Amritsar in Punjab, India. He was a devoted follower of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by Guru Har Krishan Ji to be his successor.

Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji is known for his spiritual leadership and his efforts to defend the rights of Hindus and Sikhs in India. He is remembered for his bravery and selflessness, as he was martyred while defending the rights of Hindus to freely practice their religion.

Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji's teachings and writings are recorded in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji

Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji

10. Guru Gobind Singh Ji

Guru Gobind Singh Ji (1666-1708) was the tenth and final Guru of the Sikh religion and succeeded Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji as the leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji was born in the village of Patna in Bihar, India. He was a devoted follower of Guru Nanak Dev Ji and was chosen by Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji to be his successor.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji is known for his contributions to the Sikh faith, including the establishment of the Khalsa, a community of initiated Sikhs who follow a strict code of conduct and wear the Five Ks, the symbols of the Sikh faith. He is also remembered for his military leadership and his role in defending the Sikh community against persecution.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji's teachings and writings are recorded in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. He is revered as a saint and a spiritual guide by Sikhs around the world.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji

Guru Gobind Singh Ji

What Is the Guru Granth Sahib?

The Guru Granth Sahib is the holy scripture of the Sikh religion. It is a collection of the teachings of the Sikh Gurus and other religious figures from a variety of traditions. The Guru Granth Sahib is considered to be the eternal Guru of the Sikhs and is given the same respect as a human Guru.

The Guru Granth Sahib was compiled by Guru Arjan Dev Ji, the fifth Guru of the Sikhs, and was completed in 1604. It contains the teachings of the first five Sikh Gurus, as well as those of other religious figures from Hindu and Muslim traditions.

The Guru Granth Sahib is written in the Gurmukhi script, which was developed by Guru Angad Dev Ji, the second Guru of the Sikhs. It is written in poetry form and is divided into 1430 pages, known as angs (limbs). Each ang is further divided into sections called chaupais, which contain four lines of poetry.

The Guru Granth Sahib is an important part of Sikh worship and is treated with the utmost respect. It is housed in the Harmandir Sahib, also known as the Golden Temple, in Amritsar, India. It is read in a daily ritual called the nitnem, which consists of the reading of specific passages from the Guru Granth Sahib.

The Guru Granth Sahib is not only a source of spiritual guidance for Sikhs, but it is also considered to be a source of cultural and historical knowledge. It contains the teachings of the Sikh Gurus and other religious figures, as well as hymns and poems that reflect the cultural and social context of the time in which they were written.

Sources and Further Reading

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Mr Singh