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The Five Virtues

The five virtues commonly recognized in Sikhism are:
Sat (Truth), Santokh (Contentment), Daya (Compassion), Nimrata (Humility) and Pyare (Love).


God is Truth and by trying to ‘practice truth’, Sikhs believe they can live in accordance with God’s will. Truth is also to do with living in line with the true nature of reality and being just towards others by treating everyone as equals.


Santokh means Contentment. Sikhs attempt to accept the circumstances of their lives and concentrate on acting in accordance with God’s will rather than constantly trying to satisfy their personal needs.

This comes from the belief that contentment leads to freedom from care, fear and worry and is a very important quality for Sikhs.


Daya translates to compassion or mercy and is a quality much needed for Sikhs to follow the teachings of the Guru Granth. The devotees are instructed to be compassionate at all times.

In the Sikh Scripture, mahadaial (super compassionate), daiapati (lord of compassion), daial dev (merciful god), karima, rahima (the merciful one), etc., have been used as attributive names of God.


The literal translation of Nimrata is “Humility”, “Benevolence” or “Humbleness.” Someone whose mind is not poisoned by the thought that he or she is better or more important than others. This is a very important quality for all humans to nurture and one that is an essential part of a Sikh’s mind set.


Pyare means Love for the Lord and His creation. Sikhism believes that when one’s mind is full of love; the person will overlook deficiency in others and accept them wholeheartedly as a product of God. Sikhism asks all believers to take on “god-like” virtues and this perhaps is the most “god-like” characteristic of all.