Lahuli, Tinan in China

Lahuli, Tinan
Photo Source:  Copyrighted © 2021
Peoples of the Buddhist World, Asia Harvest  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source:  People Group location: SIL. Map geography: ESRI / GMI. Map design: Joshua Project.
People Name: Lahuli, Tinan
Country: China
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 3,200
World Population: 6,100
Primary Language: Tinani
Primary Religion: Buddhism
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: New Testament
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: South Asia Tribal - other
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Identity

The Lahaula or Lahuli Tinan - who are counted under the Tibetan nationality in China - are also known as Bhotia. The term Bhotia refers to people of Tibetan stock in general. The name Lahuli is also a generic term used to describe the inhabitants of the Lahul District, which was formerly controlled by the British. A 1922 missionary survey explained, "The name Tibet is unknown in the country itself, having been given to it by the Turks and Persians. Its true name is Bod or Bodyu, ie. Bodland, the original name of the inhabitants being Bodpa. Little Tibet, to the west of Tibet proper, consists of Lahoul and Spiti, which belong to England."

History

The Lahuli region was part of the Ladakhi Kingdom in the tenth century. Border clashes in the area in the 1950s and 1960s resulted in the Chinese seizing a large tract of land from India. The region, which is home to the Lahuli people, is called Aksai Chin.

Customs

Lahuli men are skillful merchants and traders. Lahuli women are known for their independence. "Since their husbands are usually off on trading expeditions, the women feel free to take more than one husband. The men trade salt, grain and wool to other people in the Himalayan region and in the process sometimes become quite wealthy."

Religion

The strength of Tibetan Buddhism in northern India depends to a great extent on the prosperity and generosity of the Lahuli Tinan. "They, in turn, feel spiritually secure because of the religious merit they gain by dispensing charity and generously supporting the temples."

Christianity

There are a handful of Lahuli Tinan believers in India, but none are known on the Tibetan side of the border. Few have ever heard of Jesus Christ. Mission work in Lahul began after Karl Gutzlaff challenged the Moravians to begin a mission in Tibet. "The first missionaries, A. W. Heyde and E. Pagell, settled down in Kyelang, a Tibetan village in the province of Lahul."

Text Source:   Operation China, Asia Harvest  Copyrighted © 2021  Used with permission