The Sikh religion teaches Bhakti (devotion). Love and non-violence are the main principles of Sikhism. Babar imprisoned Gurunanak. However, the first nine Gurus of Sikhs had spread the message of love and devotion to the people. They did not teach people to fight back the Muslim invaders. Guru Teg Bahadur Singh, the 9th Guru of the Sikhs was also killed brutally by the Mughals.
Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th Guru too had to bear the injustice of the Mughal invaders for several years. The Mughals killed his father brutally. Then, Guru Gobind Singh called all the Sikhs together. To begin with, he selected five students who were prepared to sacrifice their life for Dharma (Righteousness). They were called ‘Panch pyaare’ (The 5 beloved ones). He thus established the Khalsa sect in order to start a Dharma-yudh (Battle for Righteousness). ‘Khalsa’ means pure. The people of Khalsa sect say the following prayer, “O God, I shall fight only for the right purpose. Make me fearless while going to the battlefield. Develop the confidence in me that I shall be victorious in the battle. Develop in me a liking for your kirtans (devotional discourses) and let me merge with You at the time of death.”
Khalsa sect is ‘Nirankari’. Nirankari means the one who believes that God is without any form. It also means ‘humble’. ‘Shri’ means Devi (Goddess) and ‘Bhagwati’ means sword. Their soldiers are called ‘Sant-Sipahi’ (i.e. Saint-soldiers).
– Dr. Vasant Balaji Athavale (year 1999)