Is Gurmat a Doctrine or a Sidhaant?

The Gurmat (teaching, Upadesh,  Brahm-Giaan, Spiritual Wisdom, or the Way of the SGGS…) is a Sidhaant (ਸਿਧਾਂਤ), not a doctrine. Shortly, in the pages to follow, we will attempt at seeing the difference between a Sidhaant and a doctrine.

There are difficulties in translating many words into English. For example, there is no equivalent to this Sanskrit term “Sidhaant” in English.

Consequently, many rush to use the term “doctrine” to translate the term “Sidhaant“, or to describe the Gurmat.

As we will see in the following pages, it does not seem appropriate to translate the term “Sidhaant” as “doctrine” , because both terms “Sidhaant” (ਸਿਧਾਂਤ) and “doctrine”are totally opposite (contrary…).

  • ਸਤਿਗੁਰਿ ਮੋ ਕਉ ਕੀਨੋ ਦਾਨੁ ॥ ਅਮੋਲ ਰਤਨੁ ਹਰਿ ਦੀਨੋ ਨਾਮੁ ॥ ਸਹਜ ਬਿਨੋਦ ਚੋਜ ਆਨੰਤਾ ॥ ਨਾਨਕ ਕਉ ਪ੍ਰਭੁ ਮਿਲਿਓ ਅਚਿੰਤਾ ॥੧॥ ਕਹੁ ਨਾਨਕ ਕੀਰਤਿ ਹਰਿ ਸਾਚੀ ॥ ਬਹੁਰਿ ਬਹੁਰਿ ਤਿਸੁ ਸੰਗਿ ਮਨੁ ਰਾਚੀ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਭੋਜਨ ਭਾਉ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਲੀਚੈ ਨਾਉ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਸਬਦਿ ਉਧਾਰ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਭਰੇ ਭੰਡਾਰ ॥੨॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਕਾਰਜ ਪੂਰੇ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਲਥੇ ਵਿਸੂਰੇ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੈ ਬੈਰੀ ਮੀਤਾ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤੋ ਹੀ ਇਹੁ ਮਨੁ ਵਸਿ ਕੀਤਾ ॥੩॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਪ੍ਰਭੂ ਹਮ ਕੀਆ ਦਿਲਾਸਾ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮਾਰੀ ਪੂਰਨ ਆਸਾ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤ ਹਮ੍ਹ੍ਹਾ ਕਉ ਸਗਲ ਸਿਧਾਂਤੁ ॥ ਅਚਿੰਤੁ ਹਮ ਕਉ ਗੁਰਿ ਦੀਨੋ ਮੰਤੁ ॥੪॥: The Satigur (ਸੱਚ ਦਾ ਗਿਆਨ, Brahm-Giaan, Divine Wisdom…) has blessed me with this gift – the Priceless Jewel of Naam (Shabad, Hukam, Upadesh, Wisdom…). Nanak has met the Prabhu (Mool, Source, Reality, Jot…) who is Achintaa (beyond thought…). (Now within me), there are endless joys and wonders. ||1|| O Nanak! True is the Hari Keerati (Hari Naam, Honor, ਸਿਫਤ-ਸਲਾਹ…). Set the mind to it, again and again. ||1||Pause|| The Love of the Achint (Worry-free Prabhu, Source, Jot…) is my food (for spiritual life). I am engaged in the Naam of the Achint. I am being saved (from Bikaar – lust, anger, greed, etc.) through the Shabad (Naam,Hukam, Wisdom…) of the Achint. Treasures (of the Naam) of the Achint are filled within me. ||2|| My tasks are perfectly accomplished (by the Naam of the) Achint. I am rid of my sorrows (by the Naam of the) Achint. I (treat my) enemies as friends (because of the Naam of the) Achin. My mind is brought under control (by the Naam of the) Achint. ||3|| I am comforted Achint Prabhu. My hopes (of becoming one with our Mool) are fulfilled (by the Naam of the) Achint. (To realize or understand the Naam of the) Achint is the entire Sidhaant for me. The Guroo has given me this Mant (Mantra, Naam…) of the Achint. ||4|| (sggs 1157).

Difference between a “Sidhaant” and a “doctrine”

Let’s patiently try to find out the difference between a “Sidhaant” and a “doctrine”.

If we can understand it, we can then appreciate the Gurmat Sidhaant — we can then appreciate all that the Gurbani (SGGS) wants us to understand. Otherwise, we might miss…!


  • A Sidhaant is a personal Vision of Reality — one comes upon it, one sees it with the inner eyes, it is revealed to one, etc.
  • A Sidhaant has nothing to do with logic, theory, counting, calculated efforts, etc.
  • A Sidhaant is a personal realization; it is existential; it is beyond speculations of the mind, etc.
  • A Sidhaant is a personal experience — it’s deeply personal.
  • A Sidhaant is thus absolutely original, new, authentic.
  • A Sidhaant is virgin — absolutely fresh, etc.
  • A Sidhaant is something that happened to you.
  • A Sidhaant does not go on changing.
  • A Sidhaant is paradoxical, for the life consists of contradictions.
  • A Sidhaant is pure, unadulterated, unconditioned, immaculate.
  • A Sidhaant cannot be made to an order, or given to somebody as a gift, or given to somebody as a ready-made package.
  • A Sidhaant is a statement of Mool-realization — assertion of a Sidha (a perfected one, a person of great spiritual attainment, etc.
  • A Sidhaant is not a proposal of a theory, it’s an expression of personal experience, ultimate understanding, final attainments, conclusions, etc…
  • A Sidhaant cannot be manufactured in a university or in a laboratory through grants, gifts, assignments…


  • A doctrine is man-made.
  • A doctrine is a consistent logical theory, logical syllogism.
  • A doctrine is intellectual, manufactured by the mind.
  • A doctrine is imaginary.
  • A doctrine is borrowed thing. The borrower hides his borrowing in subtle and cunning ways — by reformulating stuff taken from other sources, rearranging things in various ways, then talking about it or writing a new Ph.D. thesis on it, etc.
  • A doctrine is adulterated, molested, used, un-fresh, not original, etc.
  • A doctrine thus is not virgin — it is secondhand, it has been moving through many minds.
  • A doctrine is that which has happened to somebody else. One may have heard about it.
  • A doctrine goes on changing.
  • A doctrine is never paradoxical. Instead, it’s consistent and logical. the mind does not like contradictions. In fact the mind becomes agitated when it comes across a contradiction.
  • A doctrine is a mind game, and mind is very logical. So it has nothing to do with Reality.
  • A doctrine is dirty, a product of the mind. And, according to the Gurbani, the mind  is filled with the “filth” of egotism, Bikaar, doubt, love for Maya, etc.
  • A doctrine can be made to an order through grants, gifts, assignments…

Thus, in nutshell, one can come up with a great theory or doctrine, without being transformed by it. However, to achieve a Sidhaant, one will have to be totally transformed — Inner Transformation!

Gurmat Vs. Scholars (Pandits-ਵਿੱਦਵਾਨ) and clergy

What happened to Baabaa Nanak is a Sidhaant, not a doctrine.

What happened to All Bhagats is a Sidhaant, not a doctrine.

In nutshell, what happens to those who become the Gurmukh (Bhagat, Daas, Jan…) is a Sidhaant, not a doctrine.

Hence, the Gurmat is a Sidhaant, not a doctrine.

However, what Sikh “scholars” (Pandits or ਵਿੱਦਵਾਨ) and self-appointed clergy (Pujaaree group) go on bragging, propounding, or talking about is a “doctrine”! No wonder — throughout the Gurbani — they are called “fool” (“ਮੂਰਖ”)…

  • ਮੂਰਖ ਪੰਡਿਤ ਹਿਕਮਤਿ ਹੁਜਤਿ ਸੰਜੈ ਕਰਹਿ ਪਿਆਰੁ ॥: The greedy Learned fools (Pundit, priest, clergy, religious scholars) gathers wealth through chicanery and clever arguments. (sggs 469).
  • ਬਾਹਰਹੁ ਪੰਡਿਤ ਸਦਾਇਦੇ ਮਨਹੁ ਮੂਰਖ ਗਾਵਾਰ ॥: (The Manmukhs) Outwardly call themselves scholars (ਵਿਦਵਾਨ), but in fact they are fools and idiots. (sggs 1091).
  • ਮਾਇਆ ਕਾ ਮੁਹਤਾਜੁ ਪੰਡਿਤੁ ਕਹਾਵੈ ॥: (The so called scholarly man-ਵਿਦਵਾਨ ਮਨੁੱਖ) while remaining infatuated by the hunger for Maya, still calls (himself) a ‘Pandit’ (i.e. scholar-ਵਿਦਵਾਨ)! (sggs 231).

Understandably, no wonder Baabaa Nanak and Kabeer Sahib proclaim abandoning the scholars and clergy (ਪੁਜਾਰੀ ਲਾਣਾਂ):

  • ਪੰਡਿਤ ਮੁਲਾਂ ਜੋ ਲਿਖਿ ਦੀਆ ॥ ਛਾਡਿ ਚਲੇ ਹਮ ਕਛੂ ਨ ਲੀਆ ॥੩॥: ALL that the Pandit and Mullah Clergy have prescribed or presented to us, I have DISCARDED (while walking on the Path of Spirituality). I DISCARD IT ALL and have ACCEPTED NOTHING at all. ||3|| (sggs 1159).
  • ਹਮਰਾ ਝਗਰਾ ਰਹਾ ਨ ਕੋਊ ॥ ਪੰਡਿਤ ਮੁਲਾਂ ਛਾਡੇ ਦੋਊ ॥੧॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥: (Bhagat Kabeer Ji says) I have no conflict in my mind whatsoever — no struggle within me anymore. (I have achieved this state because) I have discarded all the claims of the clergy (Pujaaree). |1|| Pause || (sggs 1158).


  1. Once listening to Katha, the meaning of “SIDHAANT” was explained as “Siddhi da Ant: SIDHAANT”. The Katha was that Paramatma is the end of all Siddhis. There is mention of Siddhis in SGGS. One can translate it into miraculous power, theory, principle, a doctrine but whatever may be the translation, SGGS is the end of all doctrines, ideas, theories, accomplishments. All other ideas, principle, theories, comes to rest in Gurmat Gian. In this context perhaps we can say Gurmat is Siddhant.

    Thank You

  2. It seems Indo-european languages at some points were freely borrowing from one another and over a period of time some words/equivalents were dropped though could bring closer to a meaning when re-searched ; Sanskrit word Sidhant could be explored similarly as Sidha +Ant ( Straight+End) or Straightened, untangled, quintessential; however, doctrine as rightly pointed out by vir jio, Tsingh ji has mentioned, is still in the process of getting straightened; stated but not straightened to the end, not fully evaluated,explored partially at one end. Gurmat, however, is Straightened – researched, verified, demonstrated, cross examined, peer viewed, tested from start to end of a process and arrived results are measurable; thus not a doctrine but a straightened Sidha+Ant…just some evolving thoughts

  3. The actual word is found to be written as :GURMATi..There is always a matra of Sihari with this word and its meaning should be derived giving due consideration to this .
    Thus GURMATi means “Of the MAT of GUR or From the MAT of GUR or AAs per MAT of GUR depending upon context of its usage . MAT stands for THE POINT OF VIEW in context of some reference under discussion or consideration.

  4. Or is it the way of life for a Gurmukh?

    Well said! The Gurmukh Lifestyle (Divine Life based on the Gurmat or Wisdom of the SGGS) is very dear to the Gurbani.
    • ਨਾਨਕ ਕਹਤ ਮੁਕਤਿ ਪੰਥ ਇਹੁ ਗੁਰਮੁਖਿ ਹੋਇ ਤੁਮ ਪਾਵਉ ॥੨॥੫॥: Says Nanak — this is the Way to Liberation (Freedom from Mayaic consciousness, perversions, etc., but) you will have to become a Gurmukh to obtain it. ||2||5|| (sggs 219).

  5. Is Sidhaant like a place where no one comes back from/ever is the same again? Like a Kautak as described in Bhai Rama SINGH Jees book?

Share Your Thoughts

Your email address will not be published. * = required fields. Comment Policy.