Sikh Missionary Society U.K. (Regd)
10, Featherstone Road. Southall, Middx, U.K. UB2 5AA
Tel: +44 020 8574 1902
Fax: +44 020 8574 1912
Reg Charity No: 262404
The Five K's
It was thus that Guru Gobind Singh met the challenge of the times and established the Khalsa Panth (The Sikh Brotherhood). The Sikhs henceforth were to become as fearless as lions. They were to fight the tyrants with determination and courage but their sword was always to strike in defence of the weak and the downtrodden. They were to act upon the principle of 'Fear not, Frighten not.' The Sword was in fact, a symbol of self respect and the freedom of the Khalsa. The Guru had thus increased the responsibility of his Sikhs so that the perfect law of 'Live and let others live' could be established with complete tolerance and harmony.
In the Sikh form, the Kangha is to be used to keep the hair clean and smooth. It is a symbol of cleanliness. The majority of the people of India used to wear a kind of loose cloth (Dhoti) around their waists. In order to make his Sikhs look active and smart, the Guru prescribed Kachha (shorts). The Kachha allows the wearer to move with briskness and agility. It is also a symbol of high moral character. The Guru enjoined his Sikhs to wear the Kara on the right hand wrist. Rich people and the high castes in India, used to wear gold or silver bracelets as pieces of ornamentation, but the Guru did not approve of something was beyond the reach of common man. Moreover, he did not prescribe it as an ornament but the steel bangle was to remind the Sikhs of his principles of equality, unity and strength. The Kara is a gift from the Guru and it is also a symbol of restraint, maturity and moderation. It is to act as a constant reminder to every Sikh that he belongs to the Guru.
The Guru merged himself into the Khalsa by declaring the five
beloved ones equal to the Guru. He identified himself with the representatives
of the common people and declard, "The Khalsa is the Guru, and the
Guru is the Khalsa."
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