Hinduism in Nepal

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Hinduism is the major religion of Nepal. In the 2011 census, approximately 81.3 percent of the Nepalese people identified themselves as Hindus.[1] The national calendar of Nepal, Bikram Sambat (B.S.), is a solar Hindu calendar essentially the same to that widespread in North India as a religious calendar, and is based on Vedic principles of time-keeping.

The geographical distribution of religious groups revealed a preponderance of Hindus, accounting for at least 87 percent of the population in every region. Among the Tibeto-Nepalese, those most influenced by Hinduism were the Magar, Sunwar, and Rai peoples.

Hindu foundation of the Kingdom of Nepal[edit]

Historians and local traditions say that a Hindu sage named "Ne" established himself in the valley of Kathmandu during prehistoric times, and that the word "Nepal" means the place protected ("pala" in Sanskrit) by the sage Ne.[2] He performed religious ceremonies at Teku, the confluence of the Bagmati and Bishnumati rivers.[3] According to legend he selected a pious cowherd to be the first of the many kings of the Gopala Dynasty.[2] These rulers are said to have ruled Nepal for over 500 years.[4] He selected Bhuktaman to be the first king in the line of the Gopal (Cowherd) Dynasty.[3] The Silncan Gopal dynasty ruled for 621 years. Yakshya Gupta was the last king of this dynasty.

According to Skanda Purana, a rishi called "Ne" or "Nemuni" used to live in Himalaya.[5] In the Pashupati Purana, he is mentioned as a saint and a protector.[6] He is said to have practiced penance at the Bagmati and Kesavati rivers[7] and to have taught his doctrines there too.[2]

Hindu symbolism of Nepal[edit]

The pennant is an important Hindu flag that is help atop Hindu temples.

It is believed that Lord Vishnu had organized the Nepali people and given them their flag, with the sun and moon as emblems on it.[8] In a Hindu Purana, it is written that it was Lord Shiva who handed the flag to Lord Vishnu, and then Lord Vishnu to Lord Indra, for the purpose for battling demons.[9]

List of festivals in Nepal[edit]

  • Mata Tirtha Aunsi (Nepali equivalent of Mother's Day)
  • Buddha Jayanti (it is the birthday of Budhha but also followed by Hindu people as great harmony exist between Hindu and bhuddist in Nepal)
  • Ghanta Karna Chaturdasi
  • Janai Purnima,Rakshya Bandhan,Khumbeshwor Mela Patan
  • Gaijatra
  • Shree Krishna Janmastami
  • Gokarna Aunsi (Nepali equivalent of Father's Day)
  • Teej Ko Darkhane Din
  • Indrajatra(Holiday Only in Kathmandu)
  • Dashain Holidays
  • Tihar Holidays
  • Chhath Public Holidays
  • Maghe Sankranti
  • Shree Panchami
  • Maha Shiva Ratri
  • Fagun Purnima (Holi)
  • Ghode Jatra
  • Shree Ram Nawami
  • Bagh Jatra
  • Bhairav Kumari Jatra
  • Chaite Dasain
  • Gaura Parva
  • Gunla
  • Guru Purnima
  • Rato Macchendranath Jatra
  • Mani Rimdu
  • Mata-yaa
  • Neel Barahi Pyakhan
  • Rath Yatra
  • Sita Vivaha Panchami
  • Tamu Dhee
  • Tansen Jatra
  • Taya Macha
  • Yomari punhi

Hindu-Buddhist syncretism[edit]

However, there has traditionally been a great deal of intermingling of Hindu and Buddhist beliefs. Many of the people regarded as Hindus in the 1981 census could also in some senses be called Buddhists. Hindus long have worshipped at Buddhist temples and Buddhists at Hindu temples. The reason for this is that both Hinduism and Buddhism have common roots, and over most of their history have not been seen as separate communions, but rather rival tendencies within a shared religious tradition. Because of such dual faith practices (or mutual respect), the differences between Hindus and Buddhists have been very subtle and academic in nature; Hindus and Buddhists have never engaged in any religious conflicts for past millennia. There are so many temples whrere both Hindus and Buddhist can enter and worship.

Demographics[edit]

Hindu population by ethnic group[edit]

Hindus as percentage of total population in districts of Nepal
Nepal Total Hindus[10] Hindu%
Chhetri 3,593,496 3,574,976 99.48%
Brahman-Hill 2,896,477 2,887,317 99.68%
Magar 1,622,421 1,210,276 74.60%
Tharu 1,533,879 1,497,516 97.63%
Tamang 1,282,304 98,593 7.69%
Newar 1,245,232 1,047,561 84.13%
Muslim 971,056 21,265 2.19%
Kami 895,954 866,296 96.69%
Yadav 895,423 893,427 99.78%
Rai 635,151 158,803 25.00%
Gurung 543,571 156,263 28.75%
Damai/Dholi 390,305 381,739 97.81%
Limbu 359,379 40,675 11.32%
Thakuri 334,120 332,107 99.40%
Sarki 318,989 312,277 97.90%
Teli 304,536 302,056 99.19%
Harijan 269,661 266,568 98.85%
Koiri 251,274 250,705 99.77%
Kurmi 212,842 212,493 99.84%
Sanyasi 199,127 197,554 99.21%
Dhanuk 188,150 187,680 99.75%
Musahar 172,434 169,884 98.52%
Dusadh 158,525 157,682 99.47%
Sherpa 154,622 9,683 6.26%
Sonar 145,088 142,482 98.20%
Kewat 136,953 136,371 99.58%
Brahmantarai 134,496 133,932 99.58%
Baniya 126,971 126,108 99.32%
Gharti/Bhujel 117,568 113,458 96.50%
Mallah 115,986 114,980 99.13%
Kalwar 115,606 115,252 99.69%
Kumal 99,389 97,818 98.42%
Hajam/Thakur 98,169 97,768 99.59%
Kanu 95,826 95,718 99.89%
Rajbansi 95,812 81,580 85.15%
Sunuwar 95,254 75,726 79.50%
Sudhi 89,846 89,554 99.67%
Lohar 82,637 82,454 99.78%
Tatma 76,512 76,351 99.79%
Khatwe 74,972 74,561 99.45%
Dhobi 73,413 73,011 99.45%
Mahji 72,614 59,302 81.67%
Nuniya 66,873 66,433 99.34%
Kumhar 54,413 53,972 99.19%
Danuwar 53,229 52,833 99.26%
Chepang 52,237 36,685 70.23%
Haluwai 50,583 50,268 99.38%
Rajput 48,454 48,126 99.32%
Kayastha 46,071 45,556 98.88%
Badhae 45,975 45,756 99.52%
Marwadi 43,971 41,718 94.88%
Santhal/Sattar 42,698 35,463 83.06%
Jhagar/Dhagar 41,764 38,752 92.79%
Bantar 35,839 35,069 97.85%
Barae 35,434 35,398 99.90%
Kahar 34,531 34,491 99.88%
Gangai 31,318 30,830 98.44%
Lodha 24,738 24,693 99.82%
Rajbhar 24,263 24,119 99.41%
Thami 22,999 12,819 55.74%
Dhimal 19,537 11,216 57.41%
Bhote 19,261 7,300 37.90%
Bing/Binda 18,720 18,697 99.88%
Bhediyar/Gaderi 17,729 17,675 99.70%
Nurang 17,522 17,267 98.54%
Yakkha 17,003 2,410 14.17%
Darai 14,859 14,546 97.89%
Tajpuriya 13,250 8,500 64.15%
Thakali 12,973 4,389 33.83%
Chidimar 12,296 12,209 99.29%
Pahari 11,505 9,077 78.90%
Mali 11,390 11,365 99.78%
Bangali 9,860 9,566 97.02%
Chantel 9,814 3,021 30.78%
Dom 8,931 8,863 99.24%
Kamar 8,761 8,586 98.00%
Bote 7,969 7,855 98.57%
Brahmu 7,383 5,319 72.04%
Gaine 5,887 5,711 97.01%
Jirel 5,316 561 10.55%
Adibasi 5,259 5,056 96.14%
Dura 5,169 979 18.94%
Churaute 4,893 292 5.97%
Badi 4,442 4,390 98.83%
Meche 3,763 3,021 80.28%
Lepcha 3,660 279 7.62%
Halkhor 3,621 3,597 99.34%
Punjabi 3,054 2,464 80.68%
Kisan 2,876 2,750 95.62%
Raji 2,399 2,119 88.33%
Byangsi 2,103 2,062 98.05%
Yayu 1,821 1,280 70.29%
Koche 1,429 1,397 97.76%
Dhunia 1,231 1,146 93.10%
Walung 1,148 946 82.40%
Jaine 1,015 357 35.17%
Munda 660 521 78.94%
Raute 658 548 83.28%
Yehlmo 579 9 1.55%
Patharkatta 552 551 99.82%
Kusunda 164 160 97.56%
Other Dalit 173,401 169,662 97.84%
Other Caste 231,641 209,499 90.44%
Total 22,736,934 18,330,121 80.62%

Hindu population by district[edit]

District % Hindu[11]
Jajarkot 99.85%
Baitadi 99.85%
Bajhang 99.83%
Kalikot 99.78%
Dadeldhura 99.78%
Bajura 99.77%
Kanchanpur 99.15%
Achham 98.78%
Darchula 98.72%
Dailekh 98.32%
Rukum 98.29%
Jumla 97.90%
Kailali 97.56%
Doti 97.49%
Arghakhanchi 96.95%
Pyuthan 96.71%
Dang 96.48%
Gulmi 96.10%
Bardiya 95.17%
Salyan 94.43%
Surkhet 91.20%
Siraha 90.88%
Dhanusa 90.08%
Bhaktapur 89.87%
Saptari 88.44%
Palpa 88.02%
Parbat 87.77%
Nawalparasi 87.23%
Sarlahi 86.74%
Mugu 86.44%
Syangja 86.07%
Rupandehi 85.34%
Humla 84.40%
Mahottari 84.39%
Baglung 83.30%
Tanahu 83.16%
Chitawan 82.75%
Parsa 82.37%
Bara 81.94%
Kaski 81.72%
Kapilbastu 81.06%
Morang 80.12%
Jhapa 79.37%
Rautahat 78.96%
Banke 78.49%
Sunsari 77.09%
Rolpa 75.49%
Kathmandu 75.49%
Udayapur 75.43%
Myagdi 74.88%
Dhading 73.89%
Okhaldhunga 73.86%
Gorkha 72.79%
Dolakha 72.43%
Lalitpur 70.43%
Sindhuli 68.56%
Ramechhap 68.06%
Kavrepalanchok 64.77%
Sindhupalchok 62.53%
Nuwakot 61.32%
Khotang 60.54%
Dolpa 60.35%
Lamjung 58.47%
Bhojpur 53.77%
Terhathum 51.27%
Dhankuta 49.52%
Makwanpur 49.36%
Ilam 47.28%
Sankhuwasabha 46.95%
Solukhumbu 42.91%
Taplejung 36.52%
Panchthar 34.20%
Rasuwa 33.10%
Manang 25.35%
Mustang 25.28%

References[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Library of Congress Country Studies.

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ a b c W.B., P. 34 Land of the Gurkhas
  3. ^ a b The Ancient Period
  4. ^ Balfour, P. 195 Cyclopædia of India and of Eastern and Southern Asia, :
  5. ^ Alone In Kathmandu
  6. ^ Prasad, P. 4 The life and times of Maharaja Juddha Shumsher Jung Bahadur Rana of Nepal
  7. ^ Khatri, P. 16 The Postage Stamps of Nepal
  8. ^ Gorkhapatra Corporation The Nepalese Perspective
  9. ^ P. 10 The Lotus & the Flame: An Account on Nepalese Culture By Dhooswan Saymi, Dhūsvāṃ Sāyami
  10. ^ http://www.cbs.gov.np/Population/Monograph/Chapter%2003%20%20Social%20Composition%20of%20the%20Population.pdf
  11. ^ http://www.cbs.gov.np/Population/National%20Report%202001/tab18.htm

External links[edit]

Nepali priests[edit]

Nepali organizations[edit]

Nepali temples[edit]

Other worship[edit]

News[edit]