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The Eighteenth Century in Sikh HistoryPolitical Resurgence, Religious and Social Life, and Cultural Articulation$
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Karamjit K. Malhotra

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199463541

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199463541.001.0001

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Convergence on Sikh Identity

(p.281) Conclusion
The Eighteenth Century in Sikh History

Karamjit K. Malhotra

Oxford University Press

The political revolution underpinned by the ideal of ‘Rāj Karegā Khālsā’ raised the erstwhile plebeians to the status of rulers and jāgīrdārs who continued with the Mughal administrative framework but derived inspiration from Khalsa ideology. The religious beliefs and practices of the Khalsa, the doctrines of Guru Granth and Guru Panth, the institution of Gurdwārās, the rites and ceremonies, and the personal and social ethics linked the Khalsa with the earlier Sikh tradition, and enabled them to emerge as the mainstream of the Sikh social order before the end of the eighteenth century. A large space was created for the lower castes and women, and a new spirit was reflected in the Sikh interest in literature, painting and architecture. The Sikh identity emphatically became the Khalsa identity as ‘the third (tīsar) panth’. The eighteenth century in Sikh history became a bridge between what had gone before and what came afterwards.

Keywords:   Khalsa ideology, ‘Rāj Karegā Khālsā’, Guru Granth, Guru Panth, Sikh tradition, political revolution, tīsar panth, mainstream of Sikh social order

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