Sakizaya in Taiwan

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People Name: Sakizaya
Country: Taiwan
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 900
World Population: 900
Primary Language: Sakizaya
Primary Religion: Christianity
Christian Adherents: 82.00 %
Evangelicals: 2.00 %
Scripture: Unspecified
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: No
Audio Recordings: No
People Cluster: Taiwan Indigenous
Affinity Bloc: East Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Sakizaya are an indigenous people in Taiwan. They are defined by their language, Sakizaya, but they blend in with other Taiwanese ethnic groups, especially the Amis. Their population is small.

We don’t know for sure when their ancestors arrived in Taiwan. It could have been as far back as 15,000 years, but that is unlikely.

In 1878, the Chinese started to farm in Taiwan, and their troops were rude to the local Sakizaya people. The conflict became violent, and many were killed on both sides. The Sakizaya hid their identity for 100 years to avoid retribution. In 2007 the Sakizaya had a time of cultural revitalization in an attempt to distinguish themselves from other indigenous peoples of Taiwan.

What Are Their Lives Like?

They have traditionally been rice farmers who supplemented their diet by fishing. Today they are becoming more urbanized. This is affecting the younger generation more than the elders.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Their traditional beliefs are pantheistic; spiritual powers are everywhere. They have gods of all beings, gods for protection, nature spirits and ancestral spirits. Christianity has been with them since the Spanish and Dutch brought it in the 1600s. Though they are Christianized, the Sakizaya are tempted to return to their ancient religious practices so they can maintain their culture.

What Are Their Needs?

The Sakizaya people need to put their identity in Christ more than their ethnicity or culture.

Prayer Points

Pray for vibrant Taiwanese Christian believers to disciple the Sakizaya people in the ways of the only savior.

Pray for a spiritual hunger that will rise above all other needs.

Pray for Christian believers to produce culturally appropriate Christian music for the Sakizaya. May it help them learn scriptural truths.

Text Source:   Joshua Project