Sikh Funeral

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"Birth and death are subject to the Command of the Lord's Will; through His Will we come and go. Eating and drinking are pure, since the Lord gives nourishment to all" ( page 472) also
   "Whatever has been created shall be destroyed; everyone shall perish, today or tomorrow. O Nanak, sing the Glorious Praises of the Lord, and give up all other entanglements" ( page 1429) & so on.

Who so ever takes birth, must die, soon or late; and that is the law of the Creator. This is the fourth and final stage within a Sikh life & nothing beyond.

As per Sikh Funeral Rites: if a person is dying or dies on the cot-dewan or bed etc. must not remove & not to shift on the floor but remain there where it is. Not necessarily but if some open space is required, remove a few belongings, otherwise not. Start nearby reciting 'Gurbani' or 'Waheguru Jaap'. All is to be honored as God's Will and pray before the 'Akal Purakh' that Almighty may render us the potency to bear the separation. Affix the time of departure as to convenience.

Before lying down the corpse upon the plank for departure, get it bath and change the cloths. The cloths should clean, may not new. If the person dies just after taking bath, the repeated bath is not required. On the other hand if the body is in such a position and the bath is not possible then also don't qualm about it.


Carry off the dead body amongst the attribution of 'Gurbani'ot 'Waheguru Jaap' up to the cremation ground. In case, cremation is not possible then no scruple over to entomb (bury) or flow the dead body into some running water. This all is possible as per Sikh rites. Within abroad there are only electrical funerals and not the pyre system just like in India. As per the Gurbani directive, this all hardly matters. Please take notice... this all is a matter of our respect, love and sentimental touch towards the deceased. Otherwise, so far as the disposal of the body is concerned: this all has, nothing to do with the departed soul.

After reaching the cremation ground till the pyre is ready recite "Bani JaP" and if there is again a time gap then reciting of Gurbani or the 'Satnam Waheguru' Jaap should continue.

Samigri and Desi Ghee are simply required to keep the atmosphere fragrant so that the absurd smell from the burning body of the deceased may not arise and disturb the occasion. Other things are not needed as asked sometimes. In case of electrical cremation even Samigri and Desi Ghee etc. are not of any use over there.

Lay down the dead body upon the pyre, when the pyre is ready. offer Ardaas, then Son, daughter, any member of the family or of the assemblage may lit the pyre.

Sit nearby and start reciting Gurbani or elaboration from Gurbani- pertaining to the occasion till the pyre gets fully flamed. Conclude it reciting the Bani 'Sohila' and offering Ardaas'

Reach the nearby Gurdwara, recite the Bani titeled "Sad" Page 923 or "Allahnia" or have some Gurbani description in accordance to the occurrence. Recite six stanzas affixed out of Bani "Anand Sahib", distribute Karah Parsad (sacred pudding) and disperse.

Reaching at home and if at home it is not possible then in some nearby Gurdwara---Start reciting of Guru Granth Sahib from the very starting and complete till the day affixed for Antim Ardaas. Better Sehaj Path, with the mutual cooperation of the family members, relatives friends & sympathizers.

ANGEETHE DI SAMBHAL (but not Rasam Chautha) With the probable gap of three or four days, so that the pyre may get cool. Sprinkle one or more buckets of plain water upon the ashes. So that any burning or hot part from the pyre may not harm the persons, while collecting the pyre. Collect the whole bulk of ashes in some bag and then immerse it, in some nearby flowing water. If the flowing water is not available nearby, then bury it within the cremation ground and level the ground.

ANTIM ARDASS- Some convenient day or falling holiday may be appointed for Antim Ardaas. Within the congregation in some Gurdwara, only the reciting of Gurbani and description of Gurbani pertaining the occasion is taken. Any thing for Gurdwara or among the needy can be distributed as a sentimental requirement with the deceased, but remember nothing will reach any where for the deceased.


   X    Not to Remove the dying person or dead body from the bed & bedding on which he/she dies and not to shift on the Floor. Also not to put any type of gross-bed called 'Dubb'.
   X   Not to waste bed or bedding and other belongings of the deceased.
   X   Not to put Ganga Jal or Water from any Gurdwara Sarover, assuming 'charnamrit' in the mouth of the hearse. No Pind daan. No tulsi Pooja. No cow daan etc.
   X   Not to place lit diya (lamp) beside. Do not get bestowed any donations/grains by his/her hand.
   X   No Phoori and not to raise hue and cry or enter in breast beating (Siapa) or cursing the Creator.
   X   Not to part with the deceased from 'Kakars' if wearing the 5 K's.
   X   Not to think of about particular weekdays just as Sunday, Wed. etc. or time while criminating or collecting the ashes.
   X   Not to break the pitcher (Adh Margi). Do not 'Chour' upon the dead body during departure.
   X   No rituals as 'Har-Shringar' in case of bride groom. Similarly no widower rituals after the death of a husband with his widow. Not especially to bury in case of child but to cremate as usual.
   X   No decoration of hearse due to old age, called 'Budha Marna' or 'Bebaan Kadhna'- No special sweet meals because of old age called 'Vadda Karna' Gurbani cautions about such rituals...
   "If a corpse is anointed with sandalwood oil, what good does it do? If a corpse is rolled in manure, what does it lose from this? || 3 || Says Kabeer, I proclaim this out loud - behold, and understand, you ignorant, faithless cynic. The love of duality has ruined countless homes. The Lord's devotees are forever in bliss" ( page 1160). Again...
   "Some are cremated, and some are buried; some are eaten by dogs. Some are thrown into water, while others are thrown into wells. O Nanak, it is not known, where they go and into what they merge" ( page 648).
   X   No Apprehensiveness or discrimination in between if leg side or head side of the hearse facing, while entering for cremation ground or pyre space.
   X   No----- Prikarma (circumambulating) of the deceased, when to lit the pyre.
   X   No Piercing the skull of the hearse with some stick or rod called 'kapaal kriya' while the pyre is burning. Not to--- tear off the pieces of gross when coming out or the cremation ground.
   X   No Sprinkling of water upon oneself or unwanted baths which mark the worship of 'Varun (jal) devta' while coming out of the cremation ground.
   X   Not to go & sprinkle milk mixed water (kachi lassi) upon the burnt pyre.
   X   Not to Sort out the bones (asthian) out of the bulk ashes from the pyre.
   X   Not to Reach Hardwar, Kartar Pur or Keerat pur Sahib for the disposal of asthian or ashes.
   X   No Choutha, No Kirya, No Dasmi, Tehrwan,or Ikeesvan etc. No particular counting of days for any function pertaining to the deceased.
   X   Not to donate any fruit, utensils, bedding, umbrella etc on the day of 'Antim Ardaas' or 'Bhog'. This all is nothing but simply to follow others, under misbelieve of reaching the items to the deceased after death. For Gurdwara or for the needy any thing can be given but this all is to our own sentimental soothing towards the recollection of the deceased, but not for the deceased but can be stated as in the respect or memory of the deceased.
   X No Shardhanjlian (tributes to the deceased) during Antim Ardaas. No rituals of 'Pagri Rasam', Not to place the Photo of the deceased especially in front of SGGS Ji but for acknowledgement purpose, may be placed outside, upon some suitable place.
   X   No Vareena which is being done after 11 months of the death. No Sharadhs ever.
   X   Not to do anything asked by the acharji. Do everything in accordance with Gurbani Sikhaya (teachings). His list of items for the said 'choutha' is also not required to a Gurbani Devotee, except a bag for the 'bulk ashes' to be collected at that time.


Sikhism altogether believes in Gurbani Doctrine and bows before Guru Granth Sahib Ji as a mark of its obedience, authenticity and truthfulness. Philosophy of Guru Granth has already been briefly described over the issue in the very start. And hence the Sikh way of life is entirely different from Hindu way of life.

The Hinduism is enormously based upon the Brahmincal ideology. It provides the illogical beliefs, superstitions and mouth-eaten tales about, beyond death. Unlimited misbelieves about Swarg lok, Narak lok (heaven & hell) Shiv lok, Pitri lok, Surya Lok, Jam Lok, Jam raj, Dharm raj, Chitar Gupat, Pret Atma, Inder lok, Dev lok. Kaam Dhenu, Kalap Brich and so on. So many similar elaborations are explained most effectively, defined in detail in 'Garur Puran', including the horrors about crossing the 'Baitarni nadi' & the dreadful description over the long way to pass after death.

Gurbani discards all these believes altogether and abundantly. Gurbani junks the theory of 'Garur puran' from its begning to end, along with other Purans. Each and every action, delusion, rituals, whims, blind faiths or superstitions are negated here. All which is based upon Brahmnical believes is entirely discarded as per Gurbani Sikhaya (tenants) very calculatingly.

As per Gurbani doctrine there won't exist any 'swarg lok' 'narak lok' 'dev lok' 'inderlok' 'shiv lok' 'pitri lok' pret atma and all that. This all is simply Brahmin's own way of earning & livelihood. It is Creator Himself who gives us the birth on this earth & calls us. He need not any mediator are departments in between. Gurbani clarifies about..

   "Without the Lord God, there is no one else at all. He alone preserves and destroys"  ( SGGS-p192) once again "You Yourself are the Giver and the Creator; by Your Pleasure, You bestow Your Mercy. You are the Knower of all; You give life, and take it away again with a word. Seated within the creation, You behold it with delight" (Tr fr.SGGS page 463) and many quotations.

He has blessed us this Human life which is very precious and a chance to achieve His Unity during our life time. This unity can only be achieved within human life and not otherwise. Our life is very precious and we can become 'Jiwan Mukat' i.e. the cycle of repeated birth & death gets finished, simply by practicing the Sikyaya (teachings) from Gurbani. With the help of 'Sadh Sangat' (company of the similar people) the Virtues of the Creator Lord gets showered in our routine of life. Life becomes out of illusion and ignorance. The person concerned enjoys an enlightened, peaceful life, full of contentment & over flown with pleasure with high sanskars. Mercy of the Almighty Akaal Purakh & His Benevolence won't remain the hidden treasure within a 'Jiwan Mukat' life.

Hence, at least for a devotee and follower of Gurbani-Gurbani cautions us-not to believe, follow or act upon all those rituals. Rather this all is a task of sacrilege for him/her and act of irreverence toward the Unique and Divine Guru 'Guru Granth Sahib Ji'.

Why it is Necessitate to Define all about... Within Sikhism the method of cremation for the disposal of hearse is taken as priority than to bury or immerse it into some flowing water. As a result, most of the Sikh families cremate their kith and kin after death. On the other hand, mostly the cremation grounds are controlled by Acharjies- A particular sector among Brahmins for the occasion. This is the major practice though intentionally or due to their ignorance, most of the achaargies carry out all the Brahmnical & Hindu practices, got loaded upon Sikh families. Most of the Granthees, if present within assemblage that time, are unqualified. As a result, a majority of the Sikh families fells helpless & do same. So this is matter of great concern and must get conscious about