Sali in India

Photo Source:  Biswarup Ganguly 
Map Source:  People Group Location: Omid. Other geography / data: GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project
People Name: Sali
Country: India
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 1,042,000
World Population: 1,045,300
Primary Language: Kannada
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Complete Bible
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: South Asia Hindu - other
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Sali are a group of people who live across south India. Their traditional occupation has been that of weaving silk and cotton. Their name means "weaver."
The Sali are known for producing beautiful silk saris. In some Indian states the Sali are a Scheduled Caste, which means they are entitled to special benefits in education and public employment.

Their primary language is Kannada. They also speak other regional languages like Telegu, Marathi, Malayalam and Tamil

Where Are they Located?

Most Sali live in the Indian states of Karnataka and Maharashtra. Some others live in areas in south, west and east India. A few Sali live in the island nation of Sri Lanka.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Most Sali still engage in their ancient profession of weaving, dyeing and designing clothes in silk, cotton and other fibers. Some work in factories that produce cotton clothing. Others work in agricultural as laborers on others' land.

Most Sali are not vegetarians but they do not eat beef or pork. They main foods are rice, wheat, vegetables and fruit. They will not receive water or food from those outside the Hindu caste system.

The Sali are endogamous, that is they marry within their Varna or caste. Cousin marriages are popular. Adult marriages are the rule with families arranging the marriages with the consent of the young persons. Brahmin priests officiate at important life rituals. The dead are both cremated and buried.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Sali are proud of their strong Hindu tradition. Almost all Sali practice Hinduism, the ancient religion of India. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. Shiva and Vishnu are given special worship are the supreme deities. The Sali visit Hindu temples to offer prayers, food, flowers and incense to their gods. Freedom from rebirth or moksha is achieved through rituals and good works.

The Sali participate in the yearly Hindu holidays of Diwali, the festival of lights, Navratri, the nine-day celebration in autumn and Ganapati, the holiday that honors the god Ganesha. Their main festival is Rakhi Purnima that celebrates the love between brothers and sisters held in August.

What Are Their Needs?

The Sali need to hear and respond to the life-changing message of Jesus Christ. They need to see that the good news concerning Christ is for them not just for westerners. The Sali need to see the love and care of Jesus lived out in a concrete way before them.

Prayer Points

* Pray for the Holy Spirit to work powerfully through those Christians ministering to the Sali people.
* Pray for Sali families to be drawn to Jesus and to the Bible to find out more about this man, Jesus.
* Pray that the Sali see that Jesus alone will save them from their sins.
* Pray for a movement to Jesus to multiply among Sali families and communities.

Text Source:   David Kugel