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Sikhism & Islam at a Glance;

By Ijaz Chaudry


Common traits between Sikhism and Islam;



Nam japna:

Keeping God in mind at all times.

Kirt Karna:

Earning an honest living. Since God is truth, a Sikh seeks to live honestly. This doesn't just mean avoiding crime; Sikhs avoid gambling, begging, or working in the alcohol or tobacco industries.

Vand Chhakna:

(Literally, sharing one's earnings with others) Giving to charity and caring for others.



Islam also among other things accept and follow the three deities which Sikhs follow;

Muslims recite Salat (Contact Prayers) five times a day, say "God willing" when ever they do something, thank God by saying "God's Gift" whenever some good things happen.  All these actions by Muslims keep God in forefront and remember God.

Honest living is also encouraged in Islam;

     Moses Marries

[28:26]  One of the two women said, "O my father, hire him. He is the best one to hire, for he is strong and honest."

[44:18]  Proclaiming: "Listen to me, servants of GOD. I am an honest messenger to you."

Islam forbids alcohol and gambling but says nothing about working in this industry, which is good because due to some unforgiving circumstance one might need to work in this industry and one can do so.

Giving to Charity is very important in Islam.  Once a man or a woman starts earning, he/she is obliged to pay Obligatory Charity called Zakat, from their income every time they get paid to their family, relatives or poor;

[2:43]  You shall observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat), and bow down with those who bow down.



Difference between Sikhism and Islam, Islamic point of view;



Sikhism was founded in the 16th century in the Punjab district of what is now India and Pakistan. It was founded by Guru Nanak and is based on his teachings, and those of the 9 Sikh gurus who followed him.



Islam is the first religion of the world, the first Muslim (Submitter in English) was Adam the first man who God created from mud.  At that time believing in God was sufficient to be a believer.  Adam was also a prophet, who received words (revelations) from God.  Later Abraham brought all the rites of Islam as we know it today, he also named this religion Islam (Submission in English) with the leave of God.  In Islam, humans have not created this religion, humans just abide and follow the words of God.  The prophets are those blessed humans who receive the word of God as scriptures like Torah (Old Testament), Gospel  (New Testament) and Quran (The Final Testament).  Muslims respect all prophets and messengers equally without making any distinction.  At least that’s what we should be doing, but the traditionalists have changed this and respect Muhammad more than other prophets, this is blasphemy and a great sin.   Thus these are hypocrites and not Muslims at all.  Muslims should follow Quran alone for their religious guidance, however, today's Muslims use other literature like Hadith for religious guidance, which are not revelations from God but human words of, which are  6th  Century laws of ignorance.  Quran specifically tell us not to follow Hadith.

Adam received the words;

[2:37]  Then, Adam received from his Lord words, whereby He redeemed him. He is the Redeemer, Most Merciful.

Quran fully detailed;

[10:37]  This Quran could not possibly be authored by other than GOD. It confirms all previous messages, and provides a fully detailed scripture. It is infallible, for it comes from the Lord of the universe.

Hadith forbidden;

[12:111]  In their history, there is a lesson for those who possess intelligence. This is not fabricated Hadith; this (Quran) confirms all previous scriptures, provides the details of everything, and is a beacon and mercy for those who believe.

[31:6]  Among the people, there are those who uphold baseless Hadith, and thus divert others from the path of GOD without knowledge, and take it in vain. These have incurred a shameful retribution.



Sikhism is a monotheistic religion.



Islam is truly monotheistic religion.  Islam differs from other monotheistic religions, by the worship of God alone and denouncing any gods besides God no matter how subtle.  However, saying that let me qualify my statement, because today's Muslims do just that, they idolise Muhammad and love him more then God.  This is indeed a greatest sin, and definitely those who do this are idol worshipers and not believers (Muslims) and if they do not repent and stop idol worshiping they will end up Hell.  I as a messenger of God denounce all this idolatry and ask others to do the same.

Muhammad never said to idolize him;

[3:79]  Never would a human being whom GOD blessed with the scripture and prophet hood say to the people, "Idolize me beside GOD." Instead, (he would say), "Devote yourselves absolutely to your Lord alone," according to the scripture you preach and the teachings you learn.

Only those who submit to God totally are believers;

[4:146]  Only those who repent, reform, hold fast to GOD, and devote their religion absolutely to GOD alone, will be counted with the believers. GOD will bless the believers with a great recompense.



Sikhism stresses the importance of doing good actions rather than merely carrying out rituals

Sikhs believe that the way to lead a good life is to:

keep God in heart and mind at all times

live honestly and work hard

treat everyone equally

be generous to the less fortunate

serve others



Islam emphasize on living a righteous lives.  The righteousness is defined as follows in the Quran (The Final Testament);

     Righteousness Defined

[2:177]  Righteousness is not turning your faces towards the east or the west. Righteous are those who believe in GOD, the Last Day, the angels, the scripture, and the prophets; and they give the money, cheerfully, to the relatives, the orphans, the needy, the travelling alien, the beggars, and to free the slaves; and they observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat); and they keep their word whenever they make a promise; and they steadfastly persevere in the face of persecution, hardship, and war. These are the truthful; these are the righteous.

     Discouraging Capital Punishment*

[2:178]  O you who believe, equivalence is the law decreed for you when dealing with murder - the free for the free, the slave for the slave, the female for the female. If one is pardoned by the victim's kin, an appreciative response is in order, and an equitable compensation shall be paid. This is an alleviation from your Lord and mercy. Anyone who transgresses beyond this incurs a painful retribution.

2:178 The Quran clearly discourages capital punishment. Every kind of excuse is provided to spare lives, including the life of the murderer. The victim's kin may find it better, under certain circumstances, to spare the life of the murderer in exchange for an equitable compensation. Also capital punishment is not applicable if, for example, a woman kills a man, or vice versa.

[2:179]  Equivalence is a life saving law for you, O you who possess intelligence, that you may be righteous.



Sikhs believe that human beings spend their time in a cycle of birth, life, and rebirth. They share this belief with followers of other Indian religious traditions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism



Islam believes in two lives and two deaths for the disbelievers and two lives and one death for the believers.

     Two Deaths and Two Lives for the Disbelievers

[2:28]  How can you disbelieve in GOD when you were dead and He gave you life, then He puts you to death, then He brings you back to life, then to Him you ultimately return?

     They Go Straight to Paradise

[16:32]  The angels terminate their lives in a state of righteousness, saying, "Peace be upon you. Enter Paradise (now) as a reward for your works."*

*16:30-32 The righteous taste only the first death, which has been already experienced by all of us (see 44:56). At the end of their interim in this world, the angels of death simply invite them to move on to the Paradise where Adam and Eve once lived (2:154, 3:169, 8:24, 22:58, 36:26-27).

Thus in Islam there is emphasis on a fact that this life is our last chance to redeem our selves and make it to the Paradise, the same Paradise from where Adam & Eve were evicted from and where they are now with all the Prophets and messengers and believers.



Getting close to God

When a Sikh wants to see God, they look both at the created world and into their own heart and soul.

Their aim is to see the divine order that God has given to everything, and through it to understand the nature of God.



In Islam one cannot see God but can see God's creation.  Many times in the Quran it is emphasis to observe God's signs like night and day etc;

[3:190]  In the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are signs for those who possess intelligence.

[6:99]  He is the One who sends down from the sky water, whereby we produce all kinds of plants. We produce from the green material multitudes of complex grains, palm trees with hanging clusters, and gardens of grapes, olives and pomegranate; fruits that are similar, yet dissimilar. Note their fruits as they grow and ripen. These are signs for people who believe.

[7:26]  O children of Adam, we have provided you with garments to cover your bodies, as well as for luxury. But the best garment is the garment of righteousness. These are some of GOD's signs, that they may take heed.

Quran enlightens us that we cannot fathom the greatness of God, however, we can only appreciate in this world what God has shown us and Glorify God every moment that we observe these signs.

[39:67]  They can never fathom the greatness of GOD. The whole earth is within His fist on the Day of Resurrection. In fact, the universes are folded within His right hand.* Be He glorified; He is much too high above needing any partners.

*39:67 Our universe, with its billion galaxies, a billion trillion stars, uncountable decillions of heavenly bodies, spanning many billions of light-years, is the smallest and innermost of seven universes. This incomprehensible vastness of the seven universes is within God's hand. Such is the greatness of God.



Sikhs believe that most of us misunderstand the universe. We think that it exists on its own, when it really exists because God wills it to exist, and is a portrait of God’s own nature



Quran tells us that God is holding together the Universes;

     Greatness of God

[39:67]  They can never fathom the greatness of GOD. The whole earth is within His fist on the Day of Resurrection. In fact, the universes are folded within His right hand. Be He glorified; He is much too high above needing any partners.



A Sikh serves God by serving (seva) other people every day. By devoting their lives to service they get rid of their own ego and pride



Quran accept the ranks in life, some have high ranks and others are subordinates, God approves that and tells the believers to recognise and fulfil this arrangement.  God also does not like egos and asks us to demolish any ego we might have, God likes the humble and righteous.

[6:165]  He is the One who made you inheritors of the earth, and He raised some of you above others in rank, in order to test you in accordance with what He has given you. Surely, your Lord is efficient in enforcing retribution, and He is Forgiver, Most Merciful.

[43:32]  Are they the ones who assign your Lord's mercy? We have assigned their shares in this life, raising some of them above others in ranks, in order to let them serve one another. The mercy from your Lord is far better than any material they may hoard.

Setting egos as gods is absurd

[2:54]  Recall that Moses said to his people, "O my people, you have wronged your souls by worshiping the calf. You must repent to your Creator. You shall kill your egos. This is better for you in the sight of your Creator." He did redeem you. He is the Redeemer, Most Merciful.

[25:43]  Have you seen the one whose god is his own ego? Will you be his advocate?

[45:23]  Have you noted the one whose god is his ego? Consequently, GOD sends him astray, despite his knowledge, seals his hearing and his mind, and places a veil on his eyes. Who then can guide him, after such a decision by GOD? Would you not take heed?


Sikhism and abortion

Abortion is generally forbidden in Sikhism, as it interferes in the creative work of God - who created everything and is present in every being.

Most Sikhs accept that life begins at conception (one reference is found on page 74 of the Guru Granth Sahib).

So if conception has taken place, it would be a sin to destroy life and hence deliberate miscarriage or abortion is forbidden.



Islam allows selective abortion.  According to Islam life does not begin at conception.  Life begins when foetus is formed in the womb.  Because only taking life is forbidden (unjustifiably) in Islam abortion is allowed when baby is just an embryo.  This fact .i.e. life is given to foetus is described in the following verse, which further clarifies that embryo can be aborted;

[22:5]  O people, if you have any doubt about resurrection, (remember that) we created you from dust, and subsequently from a tiny drop, which turns into a hanging (embryo), then it becomes a foetus that is given life or deemed lifeless. We thus clarify things for you. We settle in the wombs whatever we will for a predetermined period. We then bring you out as infants, then you reach maturity. While some of you die young, others live to the worst age, only to find out that no more knowledge can be attained beyond a certain limit. Also, you look at a land that is dead, then as soon as we shower it with water, it vibrates with life and grows all kinds of beautiful plants.


*This law is very important in the case of rape.  Also the birth controlling pill also works in similar fashion.  The gender of the baby cannot be recognized at the embryo stage, therefore this type of abortion is safe as regards to selection of baby gender.

This article has direct reference to material on  Thus the paragraphs under the heading “Sikhism” is from BBC.  Lot of effort has been taken to leave this material in its original form and minimize the amount of material in proportion to what BBC has put on their site.   This is done in compliance with Section 110 (5) of the Copyright Act 1976.