Rashmila Shakya

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Rashmila Shakya (born 1980) is a Nepalese writer, software engineer, and Programme Director for Child Workers in Nepal. She authored the autobiography From Goddess to Mortal: the True Life Story of a Former Royal Kumari, which documents her time as Royal Kumari of Kathmandu. She was recognized as the living reincarnation of the goddess Taleju when she was four years old.[1] She served as the Royal Kumari from 1984 until 1991.[2][3] She wrote the autobiography to change perceptions about the Kumari and raise awareness about the experiences of young girls who are chosen as the living Hindu goddesses. In her book she critiques the lack of education received by Kumaris and describes the challenges they face when returning to school and society after their time as Kumari has ended.[4][5] On 2 October 2015 Shakya, along with former Kumaris Nanimaiya Shakya, Sunina Shakya, Anita Shakya, Amita Shakya and Priti Shakya, was given money and acknowledgments for her contributions to culture and religion by Rudra Singh Tamang, the chief executive officer of Kathmandu Metropolitan City.[6] Although criticizing the conditions and lack of education for Kumari, Shakya has not made an opinion as to whether the custom of Kumaris should continue, but believes it's culturally important.[7][8] Shakya is married, despite the superstitions surrounding Kumari and marriage.[9]


  1. ^ "From Goddess to Mortal The True Life Story of a Former Royal Kumari - Page Turner - ECSNEPAL - The Nepali Way". ecs.com.np.
  2. ^ Murr, Michael. "Michaels WebSite". www.michael-murr.de.
  3. ^ Shakya, Rashmila (2012). From Goddess to Mortal. Jyatha, Thamel, Kathmandu, Nepal: Vajra Publications. ISBN 978-99946-788-0-8.
  4. ^ "To Divinity and Back: Nepal's Living Goddess Returns to Normal Life". The Wire.
  5. ^ "Former Living Goddesses Struggle to Regain Normal Lives". 10 September 2012.
  6. ^ "KMC felicitates 8 former Kumaris".
  7. ^ "Meeting Nepal's Living Goddesses". 1 July 2014.
  8. ^ Magnier, Mark (14 February 2011). "A 'living virgin goddess' comes down to earth in Nepal" – via LA Times.
  9. ^ News, A. B. C. (9 September 2016). "This 7-Year-Old Is Worshipped as a Living Goddess". ABC News.