Introduction / History
The Gowari are a tribal people of central India. The people of this community used to take their cattle into the forest for grazing. The government of India categorized this community as a Scheduled Tribe by the name of Gond Gowari. Hindu society gives them low status, and hence they have been kept down in the caste hierarchy. The main language of the Gowari is Marathi.
What Are Their Lives Like?
The Gowari are mainly engaged in cow-herding and in agrarian activity. They work mainly as landless laborers for higher caste landlords.
What Are Their Beliefs?
The Gowari practice Hinduism, the ancient religion of India. Their brand of Hinduism is influenced by folk religion. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. Hindus believe that by performing rituals and good works that they will attain "moksha" or freedom from the endless cycle of birth, death and rebirth. The Gowari visit Hindu temples and offer prayers, food, flowers, and incense to their gods in hopes of gaining protection and benefits. They do not have a personal or familial relationship with their gods as Christians do. There are many forms of Hinduism, each with its own deities and beliefs. The main yearly holidays of the Gowari people are Holi, the festival of colors and the start of spring, Diwali, the festival of lights, Navratri, the celebration of autumn and Rama Navami, Rama’s birthday. They do not drink milk because they believe it is sin and stigma for their community. As an indigenous people, the Gowari are outside of the Hindu caste system. They face discrimination as a result.
What Are Their Needs?
The Gowari are mostly poor people who lack education and basic physical needs. They need the opportunity to enter into India’s modern economy. The Gowari will need to learn literacy and new job skills if they are to improve their low place in Indian society.
* Scripture Prayers for the Gowari in India.
Pray for a spiritual hunger that will give the Gowari people a desire to investigate the claims of Jesus Christ. Pray for a disciple making movement that will bless the Gowari people this decade. Pray for the Lord to send out workers to the Gowari people and tell them the good news of Jesus Christ.