Khanda Left
The Iowa Sikh Association
(a non-profit organization registered since 1982)
1115 Walnut Street, West Des Moines, IA 50265  phone (515) 255-5755
Khanda Left

Sikhism

A progressive religion well ahead of its time when it was founded over 500 years ago, The Sikh religion today has a following of over 20 million people worldwide and is ranked as the worlds 5th largest religion. Sikhism preaches a message of Devotion and remembrance of God at all times, truthful living, equality of mankind and denounces superstitions and blind rituals. Sikhism is open to all through the teachings of its 10 Gurus enshrined in the Sikh Holy Book and Living Guru, Sri Guru Granth Sahib.

 Our Gurus and Ideology. 

Ten Gurus

"The Palace of the Lord God is so beautiful. Within it, there are gems, rubies, pearls and flawless diamonds. A fortress of gold surrounds this Source of Nectar. How can I climb up to the Fortress without a ladder? By meditating on the Lord, through the Guru, I am blessed and exalted. The Guru is the Ladder, the Guru is the Boat, and the Guru is the Raft to take me to the Lord’s Name. The Guru is the Boat to carry me across the world-ocean; the Guru is the Sacred Shrine of Pilgrimage, the Guru is the Holy River. If it pleases Him, I bathe in the Pool of Truth, and become radiant and pure." (Guru Nanak, Sri Rag, pg. 17)

The word "Guru" is a Sanskrit word meaning teacher, honoured person, religious person or saint. Sikhism though has a very specific definition of the word Guru. It means the descent of divine guidance to mankind provided through ten Enlightened Masters. This honour of being called a Sikh Guru applies only to the ten Gurus who founded the religion starting with Guru Nanak in 1469 and ending with Guru Gobind Singh in 1708; thereafter it refers to the Sikh Holy Scriptures the Guru Granth Sahib. The divine spirit was passed from one Guru to the next as "The light of a lamp which lights another does not abate. Similarly a spiritual leader and his disciple become equal, Nanak says the truth."

"They distinguish and separate one Guru from the other. And rare is the one who knows that they, indeed, were one. They who realised this in their hearts, attained Realisation of God." (Guru Gobind Singh, Dohira, Vachitra Natak)

Name Gur Gaddhi Parkash Jyoti Jot Age Father Mother
1 Guru Nanak Dev Ji 20 October 1469 15 April 1469 22 September 1539 69 Mehta Kalu Mata Tripta
2 Guru Angad Dev Ji 7 September 1539 31 March 1504 29 March 1552 48 Baba Pheru Mata Ramo
3 Guru Amar Das Ji 25 March 1552 5 May 1479 1 September 1574 95 Tej Bhan Bhalla Bakht Kaur
4 Guru Ram Das Ji 29 August 1574 24 September 1534 1 September 1581 46 Baba Hari Das Mata Daya Vati
5 Guru Arjan Dev Ji 28 August 1581 15 April 1563 30 May 1606 43 Guru Ram Das Mata Bhani
6 Guru Hargobind Ji 30 May 1606 19 June 1595 3 March 1644 48 Guru Arjan Mata Ganga
7 Guru Har Rai Ji 28 February 1644 26 February 1630 6 October 1661 31 Baba Gurditta Mata Nihal Kaur
8 Guru Harkrishan Ji 6 October 1661 7 July 1656 30 March 1664 7 Guru Har Rai Mata Krishan Kaur
9 Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji 20 March 1665 1 April 1621 11 November 1675 54 Guru Har Gobind Mata Nanki
10 Guru Gobind Singh Ji 11 November 1675 22 December 1666 7 October 1708 41 Guru Tegh Bahadur Mata Gujri