Sikh Gurus

Sikhism has Gurus (Teachers), and not Gods

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Name
Born
Became Guru
Passed
Father
Mother
Highlights
1
Guru Nanak
15 April 1469
--
22 September 1539
Mehta Kalu / Kalyan Chand Das Bedi
Mata Tripta
First Guru of what became Sikhism. Contributed 974 hymns to the Guru Granth Sahib. Questioned authority of the Vedas. Introduced basic tenants of what became Sikhism: supreme, universal, all-powerful, truthful, formless, fearless, without hate, self-existent, ever-lasting creator of all things, eternal and absolute truth. Attacked Hindu caste system, promoting equality of all. Emphasized equality of women. Rejected renunciation and emphasized leading a householder's life. Condemned the theocracy of the Mughals. Started the institution of Guru ka Langar. Travels included Haridwar, Varanasi, Tibet, Srinagar, Lahore, Mecca, Medina, Baghdad, Syria, Turkey, Kabul and Kandhar. Died of natural causes.
2
Guru Angad
31 March 1504
7 September 1539
29 March 1552
Baba Pheru
Mata Ramo
Contributed 63 shaloks (stanzas) to the Guru Granth Sahib. Standardized and popularized the Gurumukhi Script. Opened many schools. Started tradition of Mall Akhara for physical and spiritual development. Popularized and expanded institution of Guru ka Langar. Died of natural causes
3
Guru Amar Das
5 May 1479
26 March 1552
1 September 1574
Tej Bhan Bhalla
Bakht Kaur
Contributed 869 verses including Anand Sahib to the Guru Granth Sahib. Established Manji & Piri system (a Sikh administrative order). Strengthened the Langar community kitchen system. Preached against the Hindu society's Sati system. Advocated widow-remarriage. Asked women to discard "Purdah" (veil). Asked Akbar to remove the toll-tax (pilgrim's tax) for non-Muslims while crossing Yamuna and Ganges Rivers. Died of natural causes
4
Guru Ram Das
24 September 1534
1 September 1574
1 September 1581
Baba Hari Das
Mata Daya Vati
Contributed 638 hymns to the Guru Granth Sahib. Composed four Lawans (stanzas) of the Anand Karaj, a distinct marriage code for Sikhs. Laid foundation stone of Chak Ramdas or Ramdas Pur, now called Amritsar. Strongly decried superstitions, caste system and pilgrimages. Died of natural causes
5
Guru Arjan
15 April 1563
1 September 1581
30 May 1606
Ram Das
Mata Bhani
Compiled the Guru Granth Sahib, and installed it at Sri Harmandir Sahib in August/September 1604, a landmark event in Sikh history. Contributed about 2000 verses to the Guru Granth Sahib. Founded town of Tarn Taran Sahib near Goindwal Sahib. Built a house for Lepers. Was tortured and executed by Mughal Emperor Jahangir. Hailed as first martyr of Sikh religion.
6
Guru Har Gobind
19 June 1595
25 May 1606
28 February 1644
Arjun Dev
Mata Ganga
Instituted practice of maintaining armed legion of Sikh warrior-saints. Waged wars against Mughals Jahangir and Shah Jahan. Died of natural causes.
7
Guru Har Rai
16 January 1630
3 March 1644
6 October 1661
Baba Gurditta
Mata Nihal Kaur
Persecuted by Aurangzeb against verses of Guru Granth Sahib. Died of natural causes.
8
Guru Har Krishan
7 July 1656
6 October 1661
30 March 1664
Hari Rai
Mata Krishan Kaur
Died at age of 8 due to smallpox contracted while healing the sick during an epidemic.
9
Guru Tegh Bahadur
1 April 1621
20 March 1665
11 November 1675
Hari Gobind
Mata Nanki
Travelled to Bihar and Assam. Contributed many hymns (Shlokas) to Guru Granth Sahib. Opposed the forced conversions of Hindu Kashmiri Pandits by Muslims. Consequently persecuted, imprisoned, tortured and executed by Emperor Aurangzeb.
10
Guru Gobind Singh
22 December 1666
11 November 1675
7 October 1708
Tej Bahadur
Mata Gujri
Founded Khalsa (formalizing Sikhism as a religion) at Anandpur Sahib on 30 March 1699. Last Sikh Guru in human form. Passed Guruship of the Sikhs to Guru Granth Sahib. Assassinated by the Mughals.
11
Guru Granth Sahib
n/a
7 October 1708
Ongoing
n/a
n/a
Final and last eternal living Guru (in the form of a book)