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You are here: Skip Navigation LinksHome : Introduction to Sikh Faith : Sikh articles of faith (5 K's)

Sikhs display their commitment to their beliefs by wearing the Sikh articles of faith. The five external items of the Sikh faith each begin with the letter 'K' and are referred to as the 'five Ks'. Amritdhari (initiated) Sikhs wear this distinct uniform to maintain their physical, moral and spiritual development. The 5 K's are:
Kesh (hair) covered with keski (turban) ­ Sikhs do not cut or forcibly remove any hair from any parts of the body to maintain natural form. Hair are neatly tied in knot above head and covered by turban, washed regularly, kept clean and protected.
Kanga ­ is a wooden comb kept together with knot of hair on head. It is used to keep hair neat and tidy. Kanga is a reminder to maintain cleanliness and keep thoughts pure.
Kara ­ is a circular iron or steel bracelet worn around one or both wrists to remind Sikhs to maintain self-restraint in all circumstances. It is also symbolizes unity, strength and oneness of God.
Kirpan ­ resembles a sword and is worn by initiated Sikhs (male and female). Kirpa means 'Mercy' and Aan means 'Honor'. Kirpan is used defensively only, as a last resort if all other means to defend fail.
Kachera ­ is cotton underwear with cord string worn much like under shorts reminds a Sikh to restrain from overindulgence. It is a symbol of modesty and chastity.
Sikh Insignia

The Sikh flag carries the insignia known as 'Khanda'. It is comprised of:

  • Khanda (double-edged sword in centre symbolizing justice and liberty)
  • Chakar (circle symbolizing eternity of God and equality)
  • Miri (sword on left-hand side symbolizing political authority)
  • Piri (sword on right-hand side symbolizing spiritual power)
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