views updated May 23 2018

Amrit (Pañjābī, ‘undying’; Skt., ‘ambrosia’). The nectar of immortality. For Sikhs, amrit has several related meanings. ‘Taking amrit’ (amrit chhakaṇā) means receiving initiation (amritsanskar) at the khaṇḍe-dī-pāhul ceremony with sweetened baptismal water. In popular usage, amrit is often holy water believed to have healing properties, especially water which has been close to the Ādi Granth during a pāṭh (reading). Used metaphorically in the Ādi Granth, amrit suggests both immortality and sweetness particularly as a result of meditation upon God's name (nām simaran), e.g. ‘Ambrosial (amrit) is the True Name’ (Ādi Granth 33). The ‘amrit velā’ is the hour before dawn especially precious for prayer. See AMRITDHĀRĪ; AMRITSAR.


views updated May 14 2018

amrit a syrup considered divine by Sikhs and taken by them at baptism and in religious observances. The word comes from Sanskrit amṛta ‘immortal’.