THE ROLE OF MORAL PHILOSOPHY IN SIKHISM
A new and vibrant moral philosophy is the distinctive characteristic of Sikh ism. A comparative study of its development impresses one with the unmistakable conclusion that the theoretical bases of Sikhism are essentially moral in nature and content. These are found in its spiritual vision and moral action. The human kind is offered by it a moral theory, which is not only profound but also within the possibility of its higher human nature. The Sikh Moral Philosophy is grounded in the spirit of freedom. This freedom has influenced its notions of social justice and equality. Sikhism, not only cherishes freedom, but also seeks it for others. The freedom is not viewed as Mukti at the transcendent level, or a goal after death. It is instead valued as the essential character of the individual and social life. It is grounded in the sensitivity that all the human beings are essentially equal.
The Sikh social philosophy and polity is greatly influenced by its moral philosophy. Guru Gobind Singh has, in the Vachiternatak upheld the fight for the right to be his goal. The wrong is rejected as it is described to be immoral. The history of the Sikh religion and the
Sikh society is to be seen in this moral perspective. It continues to colour the individual and social group actions of the Sikhs. The freedom, as a moral value, has also played an important role in shaping the Sikh sentiment for the virtue of courage. The moral philosophy of nirbhau and suraha inspire the seekers to continue the struggle regardless of the fruits of their actions.
The desire to withdraw from the social and to seek one’s fulfilment in the ascetic seclusion is rejected by the Sikh moral philosophy. On the other hand, the spiritual leaders have returned from the contemplative state to the social participatory arena. This has shaped the course of the Sikh life on the earth.
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