SAJHA MOBILE
Nepal's Wife-sharing Tradition
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Echoes
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When I was asked to write a paper on this topic for an undergraduate anthropology class several years ago, I was caught by surprise that such a tradition existed in Nepal. Did you know about polyandry in Nepal? Well, Charles Haviland is now bringing it to the world's attention: - http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/4461196.stm
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Chatmandude
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Hey acharya, What else are you ashamed of our country? Perhaps the 90% constituent of the bueaurocracy?
thugged out
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It's not just in Nepal, polyandry is common among some tribes in Uttranchal as well. Some of them in fact trace their roots to Pandavas. They're supposedly their descendents. Don't know how accurate their claim is, but that's what they say. Some of these polyandrous tribes in Uttaranchal could pass for Whites. Blue eyes are quite common.
thugged out
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BTW, polyandry in Uttaranchal is found among "mongoloids" as well as among tribes that are deemed caucasoid. In Nepal, it's strictly among "mongoloids" if I am correct.
thugged out
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The tribe I'm talking about is the Jaunsari tribe. Here's a little info: "Remote and mysterious, virtually isolated from the outside world, the mountainous Jaunsar Bawar region in Northern Uttar Pradesh has, since time immemorial, nurtured a unique lifestyle. Their traditions, their customs, their unusual way of life are not to be found elsewhere in Uttar Pradesh, or indeed, in India. In Jaunsar live the descendants-so they claim of the legendary Pandavas-heroes of the great Indian epic, the Mahabharata. That is why, the people of Jaunsar maintain, they follow the custom of sharing wives. The five Pandava brothers had one wife-Draupadi-more by a set of circumstances than by choice. However, the Jaunsaris are both polyandrous and polygamous, with several brothers sharing several wives and vice versa. Some anthropologists aver that the Jaunsaris are the last surviving ?pure? descendants of the Aryans. Often light eyed and fair skinned, the Jaunsaris, with their finely chiseled features are indeed noticeably different in appearance from, for instance, the Garhwalis who inhabit the mountains barely a stone?s throw across the fledgeling Yamuna river which demarcates Jaunsar from Garhwal. But polyandry and polygamy are not the only facets of the colourful lifestyle of the Jaunsaris. There are their dances, their festive sports, their ways of worship, their marriage costumes, their water mills, and indeed their day to day life?all so different from areas elsewhere" http://www.indiaprofile.com/lifestyle/jaunsarbawar.htm I read somewhere else that Jaunsari caste system has khasa brahmins on top. That's interesting...Nepali is also commonly called Khaskura from what I understand.
Birkhe_Maila
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Thugged_out Far - western nepal is next to Uttranchal. I was wondering whether Nepalese "mongoloids" and "mongoloids" of Uttaranchal , both belong to the same historic tribal group!
Xena
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A wife with more than 1 husbands? wowowow! How cool is that..hehe :D Acharya, why are you embarrassed? I think it's interesting. There is nothing that you should be ashamed about. Anyway, it doesn't seem to bother those ppl who are practising the tradition so it shoudn't bother us. And I don't think it seems totally strict at all. It does say that the tradition is breaking and some of them are even practising monogamy..so it's all cool.
gaule_hero
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I tend to subscribe to the view that economics determines society?s politics as well as its social norms. It is a Marxist way to look at the world but there is overwhelming evidence for it. The current conflict in Nepal has strong economic underpinnings, and so does the practice of polyandry. According to Mr. Haviland, polyandry made economic sense for the people in the region and that?s why it has remained intact to this day. But as he points out such practices are waning. Again, there is economic rationale for it. As those remote regions come in contact with economically powerful ?mainstream? Nepal, they?ll try to imitate the latter. That means among other things, discarding the practice of polyandry. That?s not very different from Kathmandu elites trying to imitate western culture and lifestyle; from listening to western music, to eating with spoon-and-fork to wearing low-cut demin jeans to celebrating Valentine?s Day, Haloween, Christmas and Julian New Year.
SHIV
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Polyandry exists in certain parts of the world and in certain parts of Nepal. I read this a while back, there is a tradition in Malaysia (certain location, don't remember where) if a husband likes a girl/woman he goes and tells his wife, his wife acts as a mediator and arranges for the husband to spend the night with that girl. There are very different practices and culture exists in the world, polygamy is one of them and it exists even in US. Check - www.pro-polygamy.com or search google. -Shiv
BathroomCoffee
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It used to be a common practice in Tibet too. I used to hear my grandfather say that 2 or 3 brothers in one family would share a wife. When asked why, his response was weddings cost money and bride's were hard to come by. Not religious or cultural significance as some ppl here tend to point. It was just practical and economical.
SHIV
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What is culture?? Hint-Certain practise (what ever the reason may be social, economical or other) becomes culture overtime..
sparkle
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I wonder if culture /society would have been different if it were a "Matriarchal society". I just see this norm in favor of males in the society. If a guy is caught having relationships with many girls or having many wifes its "allright" but if its a girl then she is a " fallen girl/women" . Its nothing more than hypocrisy.
Bhoonte
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Whats the big deal here? Wife-sharing is prevalent in Europe and America as well, among Nepalese mostly. Think about this. A Nepali couple rent an apartment. Got an extra room or two. Think of getting extra money out of that and rent it out to a bachelor Nepali (like me). Slowly but surely, tantaramantan suru.
SHIV
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Bhoonte, I will not rent you a room.. wait let me get married first ;-) -Shiv
Vhootee
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It's a shame that we come to know about our own history, people's history while writing a paper for English 101 class in the US.We're only taught the Kings, Ranas and all the bullshit, but not the real Nepal. Echo, for your another class, let me suggest you the naked forest people of Nepal, Chepang. How about that? I bet you'll be surprised that those people exists in Nepal. And there's nothing to be ahamed of our own history, infact pologamy is more cool and unique these days. Those people at least do not married little girls like in another part of Nepal. Yeah, who's going to write about that? Those mongoloids have low ratio of women compared to men. So it's for their best and for the society.
corrupted63n52
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There is nothing to be shamed on this story saying that it is our history. Tibetans are not Nepalese. They are refugees to Nepal and India after Dalai Lama and his followers ran away from Tibet. Tibetans though call themselves Buddhist but they have completely correupted story which follows Dalai Lama than Buddha who was born in Lumbini, Nepal. Dalai Lama is nothing but taking advantage of these innocent, illiterate people. Do you know Dalai Lama makes his followers to each his Poop once a year as "Prasad"? These guys are not Nepalese and there's no polygamy in Nepali law. The writer has no clue who they are. He is making all Nepalese low by writing such low grade culture.
Vhootee
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Corrupt, What kind of stupidity is that? Give me your number, we can talk. You see to think of yourself too high. Simikot is in Nepal and they're Nepali, no matter what religion they follow. If you have problem with DL, that's fine but associate that with other Nepali.
Dada_Giri
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Friends, What's ur opinion on it?(Thogh it's an old news.) Especially Xena, what's ur opinion? ----------------------------------------------- - http://www.nepalnews.com/contents/englishdaily/ktmpost/2001/jan/jan03/local.htm Deuda dance faces threat from insurgency By Raghunath Lamichhane MARTADI, Bajura, Jan 2 - Tan ghumya mero man ghumchha, na ghumyai Karnali. Roughly translated it means - if thou move so sharply, so does my soul. So, don?t swirl, Karnali. This is a piece of Deuda song, which has an emotional attachment with the serpentine snow-fed mighty Karnali River. The Karnali curves and twists through its course and the people feel disgusted. The Deuda dance, popular in the far-western hill region, is on the verge of extinction due to the Maoist insurgency. The folk dance, usually done at night, is facing hard times these days after the Maoists warned the locals not to hold such functions especially at night. The Deuda is played between the participants from different villages at a secluded place - like a sheep-shed. It is an appropriate occasion to fall in love between a chhoratta (boy) and chhoratti (girl), possibly ending in tying a nuptial knot. The Deuda dance is also equally popular even among the married couples, as this is a part of the culture. "If it is only for the boys and girls to fall in love, why to play Deuda at night?" a Maoist cadre told The Kathmandu Post, "What?s wrong to have a love marriage?" However, the Maoist cadre claimed that his party has not imposed a ban on playing Deuda among the same sex and married couples. So much so, people at Jagannath VDC have stopped organizing the dance since last year when a chhoratta was killed after he fell-off a steep rock on being chased by people from the Chhoratti side. A businessman at Kolti said that, in June, the Maoists forced a chhoratta and chhoratti of a Deuda group to get married within three days. They got married within the period as the rebels warned them of breaking their hands and legs. Although Deuda is played during the festival, people can be seen playing it all the time in Martadi and its neighbouring villages. The dance is performed standing in a circle with hands held together. The group that fails to reply in the Deuda tune is defeated. During the Maghe Sankranti ( which usually falls in the second week of January), Deuda is played even at day-time. A teacher at Bahrabis, Chandra Bahadur Saud, says that it is automatically understood as an invitation to the dance if a person offers some gifts such as a hanky or a ring. The Deuda dance has a dark side, too. Prem Bahadur Karki from Kolti says, "It is in no way good for boys and girls to be together at night." So much so, the growing participation of the married men has added a polygamous problem in society, Karki added. Mane Majhi from Gujada, however, seems quite happy with the Maoist ban on playing Deuda at night at a time when locals are also worried about the "perverted" Deuda tradition. He says that even the school children have no habit of studying due to the Deuda. Local teachers say there are some students who attend classes after playing Deuda throughout the whole night. Nari Thapa from Martadi says, "We told them not to waste their time playing Deuda, but nobody obeys us". Thapa is of the view that teachers can play a leading role to correct the bad habit of the children. There are examples of a number of couples, who never knew each other before, got married after attending Deuda. The couples, who get married without properly acquainting with each other, will have to face social ostracism if such marriage takes place between the touchable and untouchable castes, Dipak Bogati from Thanti bazaar says. A local Shyam Fadera recalls an event from Kalika VDC in Humla, a neighbouring VDC of Bajura, how the villagers forced a couple to leave the village. An untouchable boy got married with a Brahmin girl while playing the Deuda last year. They were forced to leave the village as the marriage was against the social norms and values. Deputy Superintendent of Police in Bajura, Shiva Lamichhane, says he has so far received no information of violence related with Deuda. DSP Lamichhane says that since Deuda has a deep rooted culture in the region, nobody feels otherwise to participate in the play. However, the locals are of the view that the play should be preserved after removing the existing anomalies in the tradition rather than impose a total ban on it.
pandeyji
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what d fuk is dis .........

do nepali guys share wives ? what d hell .............
logan
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Most of the people dwelling in Himalayan area has/had this kind of culture. We have a friend from Boudda told us that his father migrated from Tibet when China took over. He told us about joint wife and he did not practice it.
I have read that some part of India also practice common wife. There are many factors are behind it.
harkhe7
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I had seen couple of YouTube videos. It seemed to tradition in the Himalayan region.

https://youtu.be/dlKGHAHSOtI

https://youtu.be/u7HKmu3eMEk
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