Layakha in Bhutan

Photo Source:  Anonymous 
Map Source:  People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project
People Name: Layakha
Country: Bhutan
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 3,600
World Population: 3,600
Primary Language: Layakha
Primary Religion: Buddhism
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Unspecified
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: No
Audio Recordings: No
People Cluster: South Asia Buddhist
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

There are approximately 3,400 people living in the northwestern village of Laya. They take their name from the village in which they live, Laya, and call themselves Layaps, but they are better known as Layakha. The languages spoken in Laya are Layakha and Dzongkha. According to legend, the village in which they live was the spot the founder of Bhutan first entered the country.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The Layaps are mainly crop and yak farmers. They rely heavily on the yaks in order to make cheese, butter, meat, tea, and clothing, which form a heavy part of their diet. The village of Laya is the highest in all of Bhutan and as a result attracts tourists from around the world.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Layaps are entirely Buddhist and practice the tradition of shunning individuals who are deemed a living defilement so as to not anger the gods. Though they are officially Buddhists, the Layakha people practice traditional animistic religion. In animism, evil spirits must be appeased through prayers, sacrifices and rituals. Buddhism allows people to mix Buddhist teachings with traditional religion.

What Are Their Needs?

The Layakha need to submit to Jesus Christ so they can experience the abundant life He offers them in John 10:10.

Prayer Points

Ask God to send messengers of the gospel to Laya in order to tell the Layakha people about Jesus Christ and his love, forgiveness and grace for them.
Ask God to dramatically open the eyes of the people of Laya to the beauty and splendor of creation all around them and to give them a dissatisfaction and lack of peace in their traditional beliefs. May He reveal to them the majesty of Jesus Christ.
Pray for Layakha elders to throw open the door to the gospel spreading in their communities.

Text Source:   Joshua Project