Bedar (Buddhist traditions) in India


Population
300
Christian
Evangelical
Largest Religion
Main Language
Progress
Progress Gauge

Identity

According to Indian researcher S R R Prasad, the Beda tribe number approximately 300 people in Ladakh. Their population has decreased over the decades. The 1931 census in India listed 414 Beda people, of which 70 stated they were Buddhists, and the rest Muslims. This religious adherence is the reason for the diminishing numbers of Beda people. Most of those who believe in Islam change their identity and start calling themselves Balti. An additional small number of Beda, perhaps 100, inhabit a few small villages of the Kullu and Shimla districts of the state of Himachal Pradesh. The Beda in Himachal Pradesh are Hindus.

In 1989 the Beda were granted status in India as a Scheduled Tribe. The Beda in Ladakh have been living there for approximately 200 years, having migrated from the Lahaul and Spitti area of Himachal Pradesh.


Customs

In Jammu and Kashmir the Beda are thinly scattered in villages around Leh, the capital of Ladakh and former home of the Ladakhi monarchy. Because of their role as musicians and beggars, the Beda spread themselves out over a number of villages in order to obtain maximum exposure and economic benefit. Usually no more than a few Beda families live in the same village, alongside Ladakhi and people from other ethnic groups.

The Beda have been described as a 'wandering musician community of Ladakh. Their chief occupation is begging. They play on the surna (clarinet), daman (drum) or duff (tambourine) in public places or near a house. Usually the male members play while the females dance on the beats of the tambourine. On the completion of their musical renderings they beg. Due to their occupation of begging, they rank lowest in the Ladakhi society.'

In the past the Beda wandered over a vast territory, playing their music all the way to the Tibetan border. 'They used to pack their belongings over mules and asses staying on the outskirts of Bot [Tibetan] villages for a few days before moving on to the next village. They traversed throughout the Ladakh, Nubra and Zangskar valleys visiting far-flung villages in the course of their annual cycle of migration. On the completion of their renderings they would beg collection food grains from Bot households so that they could sell the surplus food grains in the market place in Leh and purchase necessary items like clothes and utensils.'


Religion

Despite their small population, there are Beda who follow each of the four major world religions. Nominally, the majority of Beda families believe in Tibetan Buddhism. Some are Muslims, and the Beda living in Himachal Pradesh are Hindus, while a few families are Moravian Christians. The Moravians first sent missionaries to Ladakh in 1852, and through bringing humanitarian aid they soon won the respect of the community. By 1922 there were 158 Ladakhi Christians, a few of which were Beda people.


Profile Source:   Peoples of the Buddhist World, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Beda (Buddhist traditions)
People Name in Country Bedar (Buddhist traditions)
Population in India 300
World Population 700
Total Countries 2
Indigenous Yes
Least-Reached No
Progress Scale 3
Alternate Names Bedar, Beta, Bhot, Bhotia, Bodh, Jyali, Jyayi, बेदार (बुद्धिस्ट ट्रेडिशन्स)
People ID 19193
ROP3 Code 115253
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 17  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file: 2
Largest States
Jammu and Kashmir (200) Himachal Pradesh (100)
Country India
Region South Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 17  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Total States on file: 2
Jammu and Kashmir (200) Himachal Pradesh (100)

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Ethnologue Language Map
Ethnolinguistic map or other map

Primary Language: Ladakhi (300 speakers)   People group listing
Language Code: lbj   Ethnologue Listing
Written: Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages: 1
Primary Language: Ladakhi (300 speakers)   People group listing
Language Code: lbj   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Primary Language: Ladakhi

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1904-1919)
New Testament Yes
Complete Bible Yes   (1948)
 
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
Forum of Bible Agencies
Gospel Go
World Bible Finder
World Bibles
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching (GRN)
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Ladakhi
Text / Printed Matter Ladakhi Scripture downloads, and other resources
Text / Printed Matter Online Bible (Bibles India)
Primary Religion: Buddhism

Major Religion Percent
Buddhism
94.59 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
5.41 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
0.00 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
Anglican
Unknown
Independent
Unknown
Orthodox
Unknown
Other Christian
Unknown
Protestant
Unknown
Roman Catholic
Unknown
Profile Source: Peoples of the Buddhist World, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


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