Antim Ardas Ceremony
In Sikhism death is considered a natural process; an absolute certainty – an event that will happen sooner or later – an event that is guaranteed to take place; and only happens when the Almighty commands and never otherwise – as a direct result of God’s Will or Hukam. To a Sikh, birth and death are closely associated, because they are both part of the cycle of human life of “coming and going” ( ਆਵਣ ਜਾਣਾ , Aaavan Jaanaa) which is seen as transient stage towards Liberation, ( ਮੋਖ ਦਆਰ , Mokh Du-aar) complete unity with God. Sikhs thus believe in reincarnation.
ਮਰਣ ਲਿਖਾਇ ਆਝ ਨਹੀ ਰਹਣਾ ॥
maran likhaa-ay aa-ay nahee rahnaa.
Death is pre-ordained – no one who comes can remain here.
SGGS Page 153, Line 15
However, by contrast, the soul itself is not subject to the cycle of birth and death. Death is only the progression of the soul on its journey from God, through the created universe and back to God again. In life, a Sikh tries always to constantly remember death so that he or she may be sufficiently prayerful, detached and righteous to break the cycle of birth and death and return to God.