Gurmat - Guru's Teachings

Child receives Gurmat Studies award.
Child receives Gurmat Studies award. Photo © [S Khalsa]


Gurmat is a compound word composed of:

  • Gur: Teacher, Guru, or Enlightener.
  • Mat:
    1. Religious advice, counsel, doctrines, instruction, principles, teachings, tenants, understanding, or wisdom.
    2. Religion, religious appearance, form, methodology, structure, or religious sect.

In Sikhism, the word Gurmat is a theological term which incorporates both corporal and spiritual aspects of the Sikh religion. In essence, Gurmat is expressive of, and therefore interchangeable by definition with, the word Sikhism. Gurmat principles are the foundation of the social structure and religious body of Sikhs and encompass the elect leadership and directives of the Panj Pyare, a council of five Sikhs in good standing.

Gurmat is inclusive of belief in:

A Sikh engages in Gurmat studies from birth onwards through all of life until death. Young children learn from parents, and in weekly Gurmat classes, or annual Gurmat camps and are often awarded plaques or prizes for their progress. Youth and adults participate in Gurmat vichar (theological discussions) in study circles face to face at private homes, or at the gurdwara, and increasingly online in internet groups.

Gurmata - Sikh council and resolution.
Anti-gurmat Against Sikh tenets.

Pronunciation: Gur (sounds lke grrr) Mat (sounds like mutt)

Also Known As: Gurmati or Gurmatae

Alternate Spellings: Gurmatt

Common Misspellings: Gurumat


The word gurmat, and variations such as gurmati, or gurmatae, appear throughout the scripture of the Guru Granth, exemplifying the merits of the Guru's teachings. When applied with focus, following the guru's instruction aids in overcoming the effects of ego, instilling peace and calm in the heart, mind and soul:

  • "Sachee kaarai sach milai gurmat palai paa-e ||
    By truthful action is the true Lord met, and the Guru's instruction obtained." SGGS||19
  • "Gurmatee ghatt chaanannaa sabad milai har naa-ou ||2||
    Through the Guru's teachings, is the heart illuminated and through the divine hymns, is the Lord's Name received." ||2|| SGGS||30
  • "Gurmatee har paa-ee-ai jotee jot milaa-ee ||
    Through the Guru's teachings is the Lord found when one's light merges with divine light." SGGS||36
  • "Gurmatee sukh paa-ee-ai sach naam our dhaar ||3||
    Through the Guru's teachings, is peace found, when the True Name is enshrined within the heart." ||3|| SGGS||39
  • "Gurmatee pargaas hoe sach rehai liv laa-e ||
    Through the Guru's teachings, shall ye be enlightened and remain absorbed in the True Lord's love." SGGS||55
  • "Gurmat hoe veechaareeai supnaa ehu jag lo-e ||7||
    Through the Guru's instruction, the mortal comes to understand and see that this world is only a dream." ||7|| SGGS||63
  • "Gurmatee har sadaa paa-i-aa rasnaa har ras samaa-e ||3||
    Through the Guru's teachings, is the Lord attained, and the tongue ever permeated with the essence of the Lord's sublime elixir." ||3|| SGGS||66
  • "Ho balihaaree tin ko jin har paaiaa gurmatae ||
    I am a sacrifice to those who have found the Lord, through the Guru's instruction. SGGS||82
  • "Gurmatee jyam joh-e na saakai saachai naam samaa-i-aa ||
    Adhering to the Guru's teachings, death's messenger cannot touch me, for in the true Name am I absorbed." SGGS||87
  • "Gurmatee aap gavaae sach pashhaan-i-aa ||
    Through the Guru's Teachings, is selfishness and conceit eradicated, and Truth realized." SGGS||144
  • "Har raakh-i-aa our dhaarae apnaa kaaraj savaar-ae guramtee har jaataa ||
    By Keeping the Lord enshrined within her heart are her affairs arranged, and by Guru's instruction does she know her Lord." SGGS||772
  • "Gurmatee saant vasai sareer ||
    By the Guru's instruction does, peaceful tranquility within the body abide. SGGS||842
  • "Gurmatee jagjeevan man vasai sabh kul oudhaarann-haar ||4||
    Following the Guru's instruction, and enshrining the Life of the World Lord within his mind, he redeems all the generations of his entire lineage." ||4||SGGS||1008
  • "Naam dhiaavai taa sukh paavai gurmat kaal na graasai ||
    Meditating on the divine name shall one obtain peace by the Guru's instruction, and by death be not seized." SGGS||1110
  • "Jeevat mukat gurmatee laagae ||
    Liberated while yet alive are those attached to the Guru's wisdom." SGGS||1226
  • "Mat gurmat keerat paa-ee-ai har naamaa har our haar ||
    By the instruction of the Guru's teaching is one blessed with the Lord's name, and wearing the necklace strung of the Lord God's praise." SGGS||1314
  • "Sabh dhiaaveh tudh safal sae gaaveh gurmatee har nirankaaraa ||
    All who meditate on Thee and sing Thy Praise, prosper by the Guru's Teachings, O Formless Lord." SGGS||1314

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