Good and Evil

The Concepts of “Good” and “Evil”

Sikhs believe that God is fully present at all times, including in those actions and situations a human ordinarily considers “bad.”  Sikhs view good and evil as human constructs. What is evil may lead to great good, and what is good may lead to great evil.  So generally, Sikhs feel no need for a separate “evil” deity to explain the presence of evil in the world. 



Since Sikhs believe that God creates everything and that good and bad are human constructs, they do not believe that particular actions are inherently sinful. Sikhs do not believe that any part of God’s creation was “born in sin.” They do acknowledge that some actions are less righteous than others and are best avoided. Mostly, Sikhs use the word “sin” to describe mental attachments and physical actions that cause us to forget the Presence of God in our lives. So, when Sikhs use the word “sin,” we are actually saying “disconnected from God.”


Since God is the Doer of All, why does He allow evil?

Sikhs believe this is God’s test of man and man’s ego. God gave humans free will so that they might choose God above all. Yet free choice means the possibility of trial and error by choice. Evil manifests out of selfish choices that bring harm and destruction to others. Sikhs believe this happens if one chooses to turn away from our infinity.

In the Sikh view, God allows evil to exist, to persist, because it spurs man to change and to learn to change through his own effort. The pain of evil teaches humans to reject all things except the love of God. It enables them to acquire those virtues, which bring them in union with God, beyond the depths of evil and sorrow.


Sarbat Da Bhalla: Goodness for All

Sikhs pray to God for Sarbat Da Bhallaa, goodness for all. In this way they protect themselves. Sikhs pray for goodness to prevail and for evil to be destroyed.

Sikhs believe that our prayer for goodness accelerates the destruction of evil. Sikhs pray to God to destroy evil because evil is the enemy – whether it is within one’s self or in another.

~ This information was originally shared in the books Sikh Spiritual Practice: The Sound Way to God (2010) by Siri Kirpal Kaur Khalsa and Living Reality (1994) by Bibiji Inderjit Kaur Khalsa.