Punjabi Religion: Interesting Info About 3 Major Faiths

Punjabi religion

Did you know that Punjab is the birth land of the Sikh religion? That’s right! Sikhism is one of the four Indic religions that took birth in India – Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism being the other three. However, in this blog post, we are going to focus our attention on the three main religions to which a majority of the Punjabi language speakers belong – Sikhism, Hinduism and Islam.

For the ease of reference, we can refer to these three as Punjabi religions in the context of this article. Which is quite amusing to be honest because region, religion and language are three separate concepts! We’ll also restrict our discussion to the Indian state of Punjab when we refer to the Punjab region. Anyway, on we march!

Punjabi Religion

Several religions coexist in Punjab, making it one of the best places to be where you won’t feel judged because of your faith. Punjab, the 16th most populated state in India, has diversified people representing numerous ethnic groups and faiths. As a Punjabi learner, you would be delighted to know more about the main Punjabi religion – the Sikh religion which is predominant in Punjab, and a few more religious groups in the country.

The central beliefs in the state are Sikhism and Hinduism. And while their numbers are relatively tiny, other religions like Islam, Christianity, Jainism, and Buddhism also thrive. From a total population of approximately 30 millions, around 16 millions or 58% identify as followers of Sikhism, representing the Sikh community. Around 10 millions or 38% belong to Hinduism while slightly more than 5 millions or approximately 2% are adherents of Islam. Christians form around 1.26% of the total population of Indian Punjab.

Now, with the numbers out of the way, let’s take a more detailed look at the three main religions practiced in Punjab: Sikhism, Hinduism, and Islam.

Punjab Religion


The Sikh religion, different from Hinduism and Islam, was established in Northern India in the middle ages by Guru Nanak Dev Ji (ਗੁਰੂ ਨਾਨਕ ਦੇਵ ਜੀ), who does not owe allegiance to any other religion. The word Sikh (ਸਿੱਖ, pronounced “sick-uh”) is derived from the Sanskrit word śiṣya which means “disciple” or “learner.

The monotheistic religion of Sikhism emphasizes the equality of all men and women. Sikhs adhere to three fundamental principles: praying while thinking of God’s name, generating a livelihood by legitimate means, and sharing the rewards of one’s efforts with others. Sikhism rejects caste and class distinctions and strongly emphasizes serving others. The humanitarian values of freedom, equality, and justice are taught to the Sikhs by faith. It also acknowledges the underlying principles of all human achievements, including faiths and belief systems.

People from various religions and cultural backgrounds can benefit from the universality of the Sikh way of life, which inspires us to look past our differences and cooperate for global peace and tranquility.

Guru Nanak

As the first Sikh Guru (ਸਿੱਖ ਗੁਰੂ), Guru Nanak’s theological doctrines lay the essential elements upon which Sikhism was built. Guru Nanak had what he claimed to be a firsthand contact with God when he was around 30 years old. 

Guru Nanak (1469–1539 CE) was born in Talwandi, a hamlet roughly 40 miles from Lahore. He is supposed to have come from a family of merchants. In his early 20s, Nanak relocated to Sultanpur, a significant city on the primary route connecting Lahore and Delhi, where he took a secretarial position with the Lodi government.

Guru Nanak, regarded as a religious reformer, traveled throughout South Asia and the Middle East to promote his ideas. Approximately three decades ago, he had an interaction with God that he called a breakthrough; it profoundly impacted the remainder of his life.

Nanak started singing hymns called shabads and preached about the unity of God. After some time, Nanak founded a community where he proceeded to propagate and develop the Sikh culture.

Sikh_Punjabi Religion

The Value Of Turbans

Sikh men wear turbans religiously as it represents the Sikh identity, and they have long hair with turbans out of respect for God. You may consider turbans or Paga (ਪੱਗ) as they are called in the Punjabi language, a part of their Punjabi clothing. Every Sikh Guru who came after Guru Nanak wore a turban.

Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th guru of the Sikh faith, performed an immersion rite in the city of Anandpur in 1699. He established the Khalsa (ਖਾਲਸਾ), a ceremony for baptized Sikhs at this location. He gathered all Sikh believers and said that the Kesh (ਕੇਸ਼) or hair is one of the foundations of the faith and should be maintained and kept in a figurative turban. The wearing of a turban has usually become less common among other Punjabi populations due to the impact of western society, but it still holds religious importance for Sikhs.

Guru Granth Sahib

In the year 1604, in the town of Amritsar, the Fifth Sikh Guru, Arjan Dev, began compiling the Guru Granth Sahib (ਗੁਰੂ ਗ੍ਰੰਥ ਸਾਹਿਬ). The earliest version, known as Adi Granth (ਆਦਿ ਗ੍ਰੰਥ), was put together by Guru Arjan, the fifth Sikh Guru. It is the sacred text of Sikhism, and Sikhs see it as the ultimate, supreme, and ever-living Guru in the tradition of the 10 Gurus of the Sikh faith.

Guru Gobind Singh worked on its final, second edition, completed at Damdama Sahib in 1705. To the collection created a century earlier, he added his father’s poems, Guru Tegh Bahadur, the Ninth Master, and a syncopated rhythm of his own.

Punjab Religion


With almost 750 million adherents, Hinduism or Hindu Dharam (ਹਿੰਦੂ ਧਰਮ) is currently the world’s third largest widespread religion. India’s majority religion, Hinduism, has its roots in northern India, close to the Indus River, and dates back roughly 4000 years ago. In India, more than 80% of people identify as Hindus.

The name “Hindu” (ਹਿੰਦੂ) was initially used for those who lived by the tenets of the Dharma (ਧਰਮ) which means duty. This name was given to the people of this region by the Greeks and the Persians. There is no apostle, no founding member, and no one instructor in Hinduism. That’s because Hinduism is not a religion (if we take a look at the definition of the word religion) but a way of life.

Check out the best Punjabi ceremonies and events using a Punjabi calendar.

Hindus of the contemporary era build intricate social structures and embrace a variety of goddesses. The Brahma, or the Supreme Divine, is constant in the cosmos in many manifestations, that consciousness takes many lives to achieve, and that one’s deeds will affect the soul’s path in the following life are some of the foundational beliefs shared by all Hindus.

Foundational Principles

Hinduism is a term used to describe the beliefs and practices of several religious paths that originated in India. The central tenet of Hinduism, or Vedanta (the knowledge of the vedas), is that a person’s essential character is not limited to their psychological or physical makeup. The energy, or the flame of God inside the spirit, lies above each of these.

At its core, Hinduism teaches that there is one supreme spirit, Brahman, that manifests in everything. The ultimate goal is to achieve moksha – liberation from the cycle of rebirth. Hindus believe that the soul is immortal and evolves through many births until it reaches unity with Brahman. Major concepts in Hinduism include dharma (duty), karma (action), samsara (world of illusion), moksha (liberation), and the trimurti or trifecta of Brahma (the Creator), Vishnu (the Preserver), and Shiva (the Destroyer).

Multiple Paths To One True God

Unlike Western religions, Hinduism has no single founder or text. Rather, it consists of a vast body of scriptures and philosophical teachings. Hinduism is also much more iconographic, with gods and goddesses conveying complex philosophical ideas through symbolic iconography. The caste system and concepts of ritual purity also differentiate Hinduism from other faiths.

To sum up, Hinduism is focused on spiritual liberation through accumulating good karma, rather than obedience to religious rules or commandments. It offers multiple paths to salvation rather than a single path, allowing individuals to choose their way based on personality and life circumstances.

Punjab Religion


Islam is a religion based on accepting and adhering to the revelations of God as they were delivered to His final messenger, Muhammad.

In Punjab, there are 2% or so Muslims who are citizens of India, and they are enjoying their religious convictions. Although there are Muslims in some areas of Ludhiana and Patiala, most Muslims live in the town of Malerkotla in the Sangrur district.


During the partition, the population of the Indian subcontinent on both sides of Punjab changed completely along religious lines. But there was one exception: the Muslims of Malerkotla, a town in the Sangrur area. They have remained there up until this point, and it is said that a Muslim MLA backs them. 

Malerkotla is a village in the Sangrur region of Punjab. However, it will probably be designated as a district by the government.


Muslims consider angels to be revered beings and acknowledge their existence. According to them, the angels solely serve, obey, and carry out Allah’s orders. Gabriel is one of the angels that delivered the Prophet Muhammad the Holy Book of Islam, i.e., the Koran.


Islam’s core tenet is that “There is no deity but God, and Muhammad is the Messenger of God.” This Arabic phrase is frequently clearly marked in architecture and on various items.

Five Prayers

Muslims pray facing Mecca: in the morning, at midday, in the late afternoon, and in the evening. People occasionally pray on a little rug or mat explicitly designated for this function, which involves reciting the first verse of the Koran.


Muslims are required by Islamic law to give a set percentage of their earnings to neighborhood residents and others in need.


All average healthy Muslims are obligated to fast throughout the daytime hours of Ramadan, i.e., the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. These are done at different dates and times considering the Gregorian calendar.

Wrapping Up

The Ling app is likely known to everyone who has ever attempted to learn a language, and Punjabi is one of the languages you can learn with this app. It offers over a hundred Punjabi lessons broken down into beginner to advanced-level categories.

Additionally, after memorizing a word, you may quiz yourself on it using its amazing quiz-type feature. It is a straightforward app that is incredibly easy to use especially for total beginners. Whether a master of Punjabi or a moderate Punjabi speaker, you will always find something new you can learn through the Ling app. So download the app from Google Playstore or App Store and start learning Punjabi now!

Updated by Punya

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