• Kaam : refers to lust and illegitimate sex. It is one of the greatest evils that tempts people away from God. It makes an individual weak-willed and unreliable. Normal sexual relationship as a house-holder is not restricted in any way in Sikhism. But sex outside marriage or sex against the will of the partner is taboo, as it can cause unlimited sorrows.


  • Krodh : is anger and needs to be controlled. A person overcome by 'krodh' loses his balance of mind and becomes incapable of thinking. According to Sikhism, 'krodh' takes a person away from God as hatred has no place in religious practice.


  • Lobh : means greed, a strong desire to possess what rightfully belongs to others. It makes an individual selfish and self-centred. It takes a person away from his religious and social duties. A person can become blind with greed if an effort to control the desire for unlimited possessions is not made.


  • Moh : refers to the strong attachment that an individual has to worldly possessions and relationships. It blurs the perspective of a human being and makes him narrow minded. It deviates a person from his moral duties and responsibilities and leads him towards a path of sin.


  • Ahankar : means false pride due to one's possessions, material wealth, intelligence or powers. It gives an individual a feeling that he is superior to others and therefore they are at a lower level than him. It leads to jealousy, feelings of enmity and restlessness amongst people. Sikhism requires that a person serves the society and community with humility. Hence, the practice of cleaning the footwear of visitors to a Gurdwara is followed by many devout Sikhs.





  • Wisdom (gyan) : is the complete knowledge of a set of religious principles. It can be achieved by hearing good, thinking good and doing good. A man of wisdom tries to achieve a high moral standard in his life and interaction with others. According to Sikhism, the first steps to wisdom is to consider oneself as an ignorant person who has to learn a lot in life.


  • Truthful Living (sat) : This is more than 'truth'. It means living according to the way of God i.e. the thoughts should match the words that a  person speaks and his actions should also match his words. Truthful living brings a person closer to God.


  • Justice (niaon) : means freedom and equal opportunities for all. Respect for the rights of others and strict absence of attempts to exploit a fellow being. Sikhism forbids the desire to loot another's property. It also strictly instructs the Sikhs to show respect even for the women and children of an enemy.


  • Temperance (santokh) : means self control which has to be developed through meditation and prayers. A Sikh has to banish evil thoughts from his mind by constantly repeating Gods name and reciting prayers. Torture to the body to develop self-control is not advocated in Sikhism.


  • Patience (dhiraj) : implies a high level of tolerance and empathy for others. It requires control over ones ego and willingness to overlook another's weakness or mistakes. It requires that a Sikh should be strong willed, but kind hearted.


  • Courage (himmat) : means bravery i.e. absence of fear. It is the ability to stake ones life for ones convictions and for saving others from injustice or cruelty.


  • Humility (namarta) : is a deliberate denial of pleasure at one's own praise and admiration. It means underplaying ones own strengths and respecting the abilities of others. It is the antidote to 'ahankar'


  • Contentment (sabar) : means refraining from worldly fears and submitting oneself to the will of God. The typical worldly fears can be fear of death, poverty, disrespect and defeat. It is this virtue that has given the Sikhs the moral strength to withstand the various atrocities committed on their community in the last three centuries.



Teachings Given By The Panj Pyare


Hukka - Smoking tobacco, and all other intoxicants
Hajamat - Removing hair
Halalo - Eating meat
Haram - Adultery and sexual relationships outside of marriage

1. Hukka (tobacco and all other intoxicants)

"Listen to the discipline of the Gursikh whom relinquishes the accompaniment of tobacco, avoiding bodily contact with tobacco as he/she knows that he/she is better off dead than having to touch tobacco."

By using tobacco, all good deeds are destroyed and the person will suffer for a long time in hell. A Gursikh will rather die than touch tobacco. If a Gursikh comes into contact with anything containing tobacco, for example, cigarettes, cigars, paan, charas, pipes, they must wash their hands with soap five times. Then they must purify their Kesh, body and clothes by bathing.

"Meat, all forms of intoxicants (including tobacco and alcohol), wearing of hats and doing the pretence of rubbing soil on the body. A Singh with excellent rehat doesn’t associate with people who partake in these things."
(Rehatnama Bhai Desa Singh Ji, 148)

"Those that consume even a minuscule amount of tobacco are disowned in the afterlife by their ancestors and drinking water from such a person is similar to drinking alcohol. By drinking alcohol seven generations are exterminated and by consuming Bhang/marajuana the body is destroyed. The person who consumes tobacco exterminates one hundred generations and many generations go to hell because of gossiping."
(Sri Gur Partap Suraj, Rit 5, ansoo 29, volume 13)

Therefore in Gurmat the use of tobacco is to be strictly forbidden and it should not be touched/used even by mistake. Other religions have also disrespected tobacco, a Hindu Puran tells them how to restrain from tobacco in the following way:

"The Brahmin that consumes tobacco is donated charity by others. Those that give charity to such a person go to hell and the Brahmin becomes a pig."
(Skandh Purana, Dh. 52, Salok 52)

The person, who uses tobacco and then gives charity to Brahmins, goes to Rorve Hell and the Brahmin who receives this charity becomes a pig, cleaning dirty drains and going through many hells.

Satguru has made the use of tobacco a cardinal sin. You are not to eat with or marry your children into the families of those that use tobacco.

2. Hajamat – Removing Kesh

Cutting hair is strictly forbidden in Gurmat. From your head down to your toes, no hair is to be plucked, cut, burnt or chemically/surgically removed. Kesh are not to be dyed by any method whatsoever, to make it black or the plucking of only white hairs is not permitted.

"God made the human form perfect, but the treacherous has altered it and made it lose it's natural beauty."

"The treacherous has altered the perfect human body, making it lose it's natural beauty. He/She will not get acceptance in the court of God and is an infidel, dog and is devil like."

Keeping your Kesh is essential. Upon the death of a relative, the deceased’s hair is not to be shaved off. The cutting of hair is prohibited in other religions as well, but in Gurmat cutting the hair is a cardinal sin and results in a person being an outcast. Thus changing, cutting or removing the hair in any manner is strictly forbidden for a Gursikh. You are to guard against committing this cardinal sin.

The Kesh is not to be washed with ashes or clay, it is to be washed with shampoo, yoghurt or lasee. Lying down uncovered or partaking in any action with your Kesh uncovered is strictly forbidden. You are not to enter a dusty, dirty place with your Kesh uncovered. Cutting the Kesh or piercing the ears/noses of your children is strictly forbidden. The hair of children is not to be tied in dreadlocks. From a young age, the Kesh of your children are to be combed with a Kangha.

"The complete form of man is with a beard, which is left untied. The Kesh are combed by this person with a wooden Kangha."

Amritdharee Singhs are to keep their beards open and untied.

3. Halaal – eating meat

Killing an animal in the Muslim way is called Kutha. The eating of which is strictly forbidden in the house of the Guru. This is a cardinal sin and it makes one a traitor to the Guru. In Sri Guru Granth Sahib there is no place where permission to eat meat is given. A person that kills an animal and eats it will be reborn in that life form and have to experience being killed and eaten.

"Kabeer, the eating of lentils(masoor) and rice is excellent, in which there is Amrit in the form of salt. Who would cut his own throat, to have meat with his chappati?"
(SGGSJ Ang 1374)

The Khalsa is a warrior, not being a Vaishnoo (whom do not kill any other living beings), but at the same time the Khalsa is not a butcher who kills for meat. Guru Ji used to go hunting to free souls from the cycle of births and deaths. We do not have the power to become Mukt (liberate) ourselves from the cycle of births and deaths let alone liberate others. When Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji lived at Sultanpur, a Qazi (Muslim priest) was killing a chicken but it escaped from his clutches and splashed his clothing with blood. The Qazi said to his servant, my clothes have become dirty, go and fetch fresh clothes. Satguru ji composed the following Shabad in reference to the Qazi...

"If blood has stained your clothing you say your clothes have become impure. How can the thought of those who eat meat, drink blood and suck bones become pure?"
(SGGSJ Ang 140)

Qazi! If your clothes have become impure due to bloodstains then how can your mind stay pure after eating a chicken which is so large and was full of blood. Eating meat just to satisfy your taste buds is strictly forbidden. Vaheguru has created 36 types of vegetarian food for you to consume, by eating meat your intellect becomes like that of an animal. Your mind becomes unwilling to recite Gurbani. Baba Deep Singh Ji lived on a diet of unripe Ber (a tropical fruit) and hand wrote four volumes of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, which were placed at four of the Takhats. At the age of 87, he went to war and defeated the tyrants. Within him he had the power of Naam, Bani and Amrit. To conclude, eating meat is not allowed.

4. Haraam – Adultery, sexual relationships outside of marriage

In Gurmat, entering sexual relationships outside of marriage is strictly forbidden for both men and women. Husband and wife must be physically faithful to one another. People, who allow lust to overcome them, and violate this rule, will go to hell and enter other life forms.

"O sexual desire, you lead the mortals to hell; you make them wander in reincarnation through countless species."
(SGGSJ Ang 1358)

"When I was mature enough, Satguru Sri Guru Teg Bahadur Sahib Ji gave me this teaching: Until the day you take your last breath, you must take this in and never forget it. You must forever keep respect for your wife. You must never go onto another women’s bed, even in a dream."
(Sri Dasam Granth Ang 842)

"Men should look at the opposite sex as mothers, sisters and daughters, (women should look at the opposite sex as fathers, brothers and sons)."
(Var. 29, Pauri 11, Bhai Gurdas Ji)

"Be faithful to your one wife, see others as your daughters and sisters, (for women you must be faithful to one husband and see others as your sons and brothers)."
(Var. 6, Pauri 8, Bhai Gurdas Ji)

Singhs are to see elder women as their mothers, female peers as sisters and younger females as daughters. In the same manner, women are to see elder men as their fathers, male peers as their brothers and younger males as their sons. A Singh must look upon his wife as his faithful Singhni. In the same manner, a Singhni should look upon her husband as Parmeshwar (God). Those who have sexual relationships outside of the bonds of marriage go to hell and in the after-life they will suffer the pain of embracing red-hot iron columns.

"…the hot irons are put around his/her body."
(SGGSJ Ang 546)


"Those men who go out to enjoy other men`s women shall suffer in shame."
(SGGSJ Ang 1362)

5. Alcohol

In Gurmat, the drinking of alcohol is strictly forbidden. The word for alcohol is ‘Sharaab’ which means ‘sharaarat’ mischief, and ‘aab’ means water, thus it means mischievous or evil water, which is the root of all sins and evil actions. Sri Guru Amar Das ji writes about alcohol in the following way...

"SALOK, THIRD SAROOP (FORM): One person brings a full bottle, and another fills his cup. Drinking the wine, his intelligence departs, and madness enters his mind; he cannot distinguish between his own and others, and he is struck down by his Lord and Master. Drinking it, he forgets his Lord and Master, and he is punished in the Court of the Lord. Do not drink the false wine at all, if it is in your power."
(SGGSJ Ang 554)

"Kabeer Ji says, those mortals who consume marijuana, meat, tobacco, fish and wine - all pilgrimages, fasts and rituals they follow are of no avail."
(SGGSJ Ang 1377)

An Amritdharee Singh should not even look at alcohol.

"One who trades in this Amrit/Nectar how could he ever love the wine of the world?"
(SGGSJ Ang 360)

By drinking alcohol the intellect is destroyed. Vaheguru is forsaken and the gem of human life is wasted. Those who have evil thoughts drink alcohol. This makes them more lustful which in turn leads them to hell.

"Drinking in this wine, Guru Ji says, one takes on countless sins and corruptions."
(SGGSJ Ang 553)

In the same way it is stated in the Charitar:

"Firstly he is drinking alcohol, secondly he is young, thirdly he is wealthy - then how can he escape sinful actions? Only if God is merciful can one be saved from sin."
(Sri Dasam Granth Ang 1077)

In the Rehatnama’s the drinking of alcohol is strictly forbidden

"The Singh that refrains from the following five actions is considered wise - sexual relations other than those with a marital partner, gambling, lying, steeling and drinking alcohol."
(Rehatnama Bhai Desa Singh Ji, p.149)

Gursikhs are to drink this sort of intoxicant...

"ASA, FIRST SAROOP (FORM): Make spiritual wisdom your molasses, and meditation your scented flowers; let good deeds be the herbs. Let devotional faith be the distilling fire, and your love the ceramic cup. Thus the sweet nectar of life is distilled."
(SGGSJ Ang 360)



  1. Bharosa - faith. A deep Faith in God and Dependence of god. The firm Faith in Vaheguru is the first and foremost experience of a practitioner of naam.
  2. Leenta - An absolute attachment attachment (absorption) to god.
  3. Santokh - Content
  4. Detachment - From Family, Friends & Worldly Possesions.
  5. Hukam - Acceptance of and Total Surrender to the will of god.
  6. Sehaj - Equilibrium and Equipoise of the mind.
  7. Anand - Perpetual delight and Permanant joy.
  8. Vismaad - Ecstacy: Joy plus wonderment, forgetting the self.
  9. Nadar - An awakened soul considers god as the prime reason of his attainments and that his own efforts means nothing. The attitude keeps ego far away from the person.