Introduction / History
Listen to the personal words of a woman who grew up in a large Andalal village—"As a girl, knowing no other way, I was proud and happy that I had been born into a Muslim family. I sincerely believed that Islam was indeed the religion of peace and goodness, and with all my heart I searched for a close relationship with the God of Islam just like millions of honorable people in Muslim cultures do today. But, my story is of a lack of peace in my heart... As I grew up, I was full of pain from many horrible things that had happened to me since childhood. But I couldn't speak about any of this with anyone--the culture of shame and judgment in which I lived was so powerful that it would not allow for this. In the midst of all this, I believed in Allah, although I was experiencing more and more disappointment with the religion in which I was born..."
"As I grew I carried with me a mass of internal confusion, emotional pain, and a catastrophic amount of self-doubt. This kept getting worse because of my father. I feared him greatly. He would often explode in rages in response to just one word. My mother, kind as she was, was not able to teach much to us girls because she herself was so beaten down and unhappy. Often from my earliest childhood I would hear hurled at us from my father's drunken tongue, things like, 'I'll bury you alive!' or... 'I'll cut you up in pieces like cattle!'"
The closely-related Andalal & Qarakh language groups are located in the eastern highlands of the Avar region of Dagestan—Andalal in the central watershed of the mountainous Kara-Koisu River, and Qarakh in the upper watershed of the Kara-Koisu. The languages are in the Avar language family, but are so distinct as to be mutually unintelligible from dominant Avar.
Where are they Located?
Andalal villages or towns [central highlands]:
Mana-sul, Ar-kas, Ma-ali, Tun-vi, Darada, Mu-rada, Khvarti-kuni, Tlo-gab, Sekh Koch, Khata-gib, Bala-noob, Agada, Urala, Kho-toch, Khin-dakh, Gunib-[center], Sal-ta, Ke-ger, Kuda-li, Kommuna, Rugudzha, Shu-makh, Un-tii, Ku'la, Shula-ni, Gam-sutl', Akh-nada, Oon-kida, So-gratl', Na-kazukh, Sheet-li, Obokh, Megeb, Bukhti, Shan-goda, Murala, Ku-yada, and Chokh
Qarakh villages or towns [upper highlands]:
Ba-tsada, Charoda, Go-chada, Tlya-rosh, Tsul'da, Ta-lukh, Mo-chib, Go-chob, Mu-gurukh, Tsu-rib[central town], Tse-neb, Magar, Khu-rukh, Kooch-rab, Noo-koosh, Ee-rib, Chva-dab, So-dab, Chi-tab, Khi-nib, Tse-mer, Gi-lib, Go-ab, Rit-liyab, Mu-kratl' and Doos-rakh
What are Their Beliefs?
This region has been fiercely Muslim for hundreds of years. In Andalal/Qarakh are many amazing cultural historical strengths, but also a tragic deficit of grace, forgiveness, and agape love. Due to these deficits, in recent years even many of the historic strengths grow progressively dimmer in face of the devastating effects of sin.
* Pray that many, like the author of this writing, will find the grace of Jesus for healing and regeneration (II Chron.16:9).
* Pray for revelation thru dreams and visions (which also was key in this Andalal woman's salvation story).
* Pray for courage among both men and women to embrace the truth and be filled with the Holy Spirit—Acts 2:38-40.
* Pray for apostles and evangelists—Eph.4:11-12.
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