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Does God Have a Name?

Posted by dhansikhi on April 8, 2012 at 5:30 AM

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As Guru Nanak Dev Ji says god has many names, many forms and no one can tell how many virtues he has. His reach is vast and limitless and it cannot be described by anybody. God has many names and qualities which a mere human cannot describe. God is known by different names in different areas of the world and he is known by different forms in different places.

Throughout the world there have been countless names given to god by humans. Guru Nanak Dev Ji preached the word ‘Waheguru’ as the god’s name. Waheguru generally means ‘The Wonderous Teacher’. In his writings Bhai Gurdas Ji has written that the word ‘Waheguru’ comes from the starting letters of the names of the god which appeared in the four eons (Yugs). The Syllable “Va” stands for “Vasudev”, “Ha” stands for “Hari”, “Ra” stands for “Ram” and   “Ga” stands for “Gobind”. ‘Vasudev, Hari, Ram and Gobind’ are all different names of god in India.

In Guru Granth Sahib Ji there are numerous instances where there is word ‘Ram’ written for god. Some people have misinterpretated that with “Rama” who was the incarnation of Vishnu. There are also many other different names by which god is addressed. Words such as, ‘Hari, Ram, Gobind, Thakur, Parmanand, Gopal, Akal Purakh, Nirankar etc’ and many more. All these words represent the one timeless god and none other. People sometimes confuse these names with the names of the Hindu deities.

Sikhism does not believe in multiple gods. In fact Guru Gobind Singh Ji in his writings in Dasam Granth has written ‘I do not worship Ganesh, Krishna I do not know who they are’. The very first word of Guru Granth Sahib Ji is “Ik Omkar”, which means there is only one god. At numerous places in Guru Granth Sahib is written that God creates many Krishnas and destroys many. They are all created by the same god. Muslims call him ‘Allah, Parvar Digar, Khuda etc’, Christians call him ‘Jesus, God etc’, there are numerous names of god all over the globe. And if intelligent life exists elsewhere may be even they have names for god.

In Hindu religion a single deity itself has so many names. The objective of writing this article is that Guru Granth Sahib Ji has many names of god mentioned. Those names all belong to the one timeless primal being who created everything and has the power to destroy it. The universe follows his will and not anybody else’s.  The name of the god is above all and according to Guru Arjan Dev Ji, God is where his name is.

So to conclude, God has numerous names. God is known in different parts of the world by different names and this does not make him any different. He is same throughout the universe. There are many names mentioned in Guru Granth Sahib Ji which should not be mixed with names of Hindu Deities. All those names belong to the One Timeless, True, Formidable god who created the universe and everything follows his will and command. I write this article with his blessing.

Waheguru Ji Ka khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh.


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