The definition and belief of a Sikh.
Who is a Sikh?
As per the Sikh's code of conduct, the Sikh is defined as any human being who faithfully believes in
1) One immortal being,
2) ten Gurus, from Guru Nanak dev ji to Guru Gobind singh ji,
3) the Guru Granth Sahib,
4) the utterances and teachings of ten gurus,
5) the baptism bequeathed by the tenth Guru,
and who does not owe allegiance to any other religion,
is a Sikh.
Sikh's spiritual life
A Sikh's life has two aspects:individual or personal and corporate or panthic. Sikh's personal life should comprehend - a) mediation on naam (divine substance-also translated to God's attributed self); (b) leading life according to Guru's teachings and; (c) altruistic voluntary service.
The Sikh should wake up in the ambrosial hours (three hours before dawn), take bath and concentrating his/her thoughts on One immortal being, repeat the name Waheguru (wondrous destroyer of darkness).
He/she should recite the following scriptural compositions everyday: the japu, the Jaap and the ten sawayyas (Quartets) - begining 'Srawag sudh' in the morning.
Sodar Rehras in the evening. Sohila to recited at night before going to bed.
The origin of the Khalsa
In April 1699, on the day of baisakhi (the punjabi harvest festival) the tenth guru, Guru Gobind singh ji called all the Sikhs to attend the festival. The gathering was huge. Almost 80,000 people attended. During the ceremony, the tenth guru came on the stage, took his sword out of the sheath and shouted - I need one head, which of my Sikh is willing to gift it to me. Everybody was stunned. No one replied. He shouted again asking for a head. The congregation started getting scared. Yet, no one came forward. He shouted the third time 'I need a head, who among you is willing to come forward and gift it to me.'
One Sikh stood up, his name was Bhai Daya Ram. He came forward and humbly apologised for not stepping forward at previous calls. Guruji took him to the backstage. Guruji came back at the stage with his sword red with blood. It was as if he has beheaded Bhai Daya Ram. As he came to the stage, he shouted again 'I need one more head.' At this time the people in the congregation really got scared and a quarter of them left the ceremony. On the second call, Bhai Dharam Singh came forward and apologised for not stepping forward before. He was taken to the backstage by the guru. The Guruij came back to the stage asking for another head. Half of the congregation had left by this time. Some Sikhs went to the Guruji's mother to complain about what was happening. The Guru called out three more times like this and Bhai Mohkam Chand, Bhai Himmat Rai and Bhai Sahib Chand came forward each time respectively. The number of people in congregation was only a quarter left of what was in the start. After a while, Guruji came back to the stage but this time with all five of them dressed in saffron coloured robes. Guruji and Mata Sahib Kaur prepared the 'khandey baatey ki pahul' reciting the five prayers. Then the pahul was given to those five Sikhs who were called the 'panj pyarey' or the five beloved ones. Then Guruji bowed in front of the panj pyarey and asked them to bless him with the pahul. The panj pyarey then blessed the Guruji with the pahul.
This was the start of the order of Khalsa. The Khalsa was instructed to always wear five articles, known as five K's. The 'Kes' (uncut hairs), 'Kanga' (wooden comb), 'Kirpan' (sword), 'Kada' (iron bracelet), 'Kachhera' (boxer shorts).