People-in-Country Profile

People Selector:
Print version:
Step 1 - Select a Country:   Send us your updates!
Step 2 - Select a People:  

Mech in India

Mech

Send us a photo of this people.  [1]

Mech in India map

Flash Map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
55,000 Boro Hinduism 27.98 % Unknown Not available   

Mech in India

Profile Text
Submit Profile Text:

Introduction / History
The Mech settled centuries ago in the sub-Himalayan regions of Assam and West Bengal. They are members of the Mongoloid race, who moved from the north into southwestern China. Most eventually migrated into Burma and Indonesia, but a branch of the tribe remained in India. Today, the Mech build their villages in the forests and hills of Darjeeling, Jalpaiguri, and Cooch-Behar districts. Related to the Bodo and Kachari, they speak Bodo, a branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family.

While living under Brahmin influence, the Mech embraced Hinduism and took Hindu surnames for themselves. An ancient tradition claims that the Mech are descendants of the god Shiva ("the destroyer"). Although they have mixed with other peoples, they have retained social class divisions, or septs. These include classes of priests, warriors, and farmers. The divisions are not to be mistaken for castes, as there is no prohibition against intermarriage or eating together.

What are their lives like?
The Mech are very hospitable, friendly people. They are amiable, intelligent, and honest. Although they have an ancient history of being headhunters, they are free from arrogance, revenge, and cruelty. The Mech marry within their own tribe and within any of their septs. Women are forbidden to engage in any premarital sexual activity, and any sexual offenses are heavily punished. Husbands generally have great respect for their wives, who have absolute control over the household affairs and are consulted in all family and social matters. Most households consist of extended families, as the sons bring their wives home after marriage. Fathers are responsible for training their sons in economic skills, and mothers train their daughters in household duties.

In the early 1900s, the Mech were nomadic people, practicing swidden (slash and burn) agriculture. There were few people and much land; thus, this type of erratic agriculture did not affect the country at all. Now, however, with growing populations in the region, they have become permanent farmers, using bulls and plows in their cultivation of the soil. Rice is their principal cash crop, but they are experts in growing the areaca nut and betel leaves, two powerful stimulants. Recently, they have begun to grow maize as an additional food supplement.

The Mech have a close affinity with the earth, referring to it as the "human mother." Harvests cannot be fruitful, they believe, without first worshiping the Great Mother through offering an animal sacrifice and performing the ritual dance.

What are their beliefs?
The Mech religious beliefs are a blend of animism (belief that non-human objects have spirits) and Hinduism. Like many primitive tribes, their idea of gods developed from the concept of "dynamism" or "power." Anything that appeared to possess superhuman power was regarded as an object of worship. The Mech worshipped-and still worship-the rivers, forests, celestial bodies, snakes, and certain plants. Tree-worship is an important custom, for every tree is a symbol of life. The Mech believe that trees have souls like their own and that the tree-soul is capable of being transferred to humans and animals. The great god of the Mech-the Bathou (the Euphorbia plant)-is worshipped in every Mech household. Most of the ancient Mech gods now have Vedic names but have retained the old, animistic qualities.

Except for the use of lumps of dirt in the worship of the earth, the Mech traditionally have no idols. However, the influence of Hindu culture has caused some of the Mech to begin making idols of gods in recent years.

What are their needs?
As in most animistic cultures, the Mech live in fear of the spirits of nature. Only through appeasement can they have peace or success in life, but no one is sure when or if the spirits are appeased. The Mech need liberation from such oppressive beliefs. Their culture is also in great transition economically. A large percentage of Mech have encumbered unmanageable debt, and may face lives of poverty in the near future.

Prayer Points
* Pray that the Lord will set the Mech free from fear of their gods.
* Ask God to grant wisdom and favor to missions agencies that are focusing on the Mech.
* Ask God to anoint the Gospel as it goes forth via radio in their area.
* Pray that the Lord will raise up long term workers to join the few who have already responded.
* Ask the Holy Spirit to complete the work begun in the hearts of the Mech believers.

View Mech in all countries.

Prayer Links  
PrayerGuard.net
  Submit Update:
Country: India
Continent: Asia
Region: South Asia
Persecution Rank:11 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Population in Country:55,000
Largest States:
West Bengal (42,000)Assam (11,000)
Arunachal Pradesh (1,200)Meghalaya (1,000)
Andaman and Nicobar Islands (100)Manipur (60)
Tripura (50)
Total States on file:7
   
 
Maps
Submit Map:
Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
 
  Peoples [3]
Submit Update:
People Name in Country: Mech
People Name General: Mech
Alternate People Names:
Bodo KacariBoro
KachariKachari Mech
MecMeche
मेच
ROP3 Code: 112946
Joshua Project People ID: 17526
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 55,000
Population all Countries: 61,000
Least-Reached: No
   
 
Affinity Bloc: Tibetan-Himalayan Peoples
People Cluster: Garo-Tripuri
People Name General: Mech
Ethnic Code: MSY50r
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
   
 
Language
Submit Update:
Primary Language: Boro (37,000 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): brx    Ethnologue Listing
Primary Dialect:Meche
Dialect Code:4377
Secondary Languages:
Assamese (5,100)Bengali (4,500)
Kachari (4,100)Hindi (1,600)
Kurux (500)Kharia (400)
Nepali (300)Santhali (100)
Tibetan, Central (100)Munda (100)
Note: Only 10 largest secondary languages listed
Total Languages: 22
   
 
Religion [4]
Submit Update:
Primary Religion: Hinduism
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.21 % 
Christianity27.98 %(Evangelical: Data not available)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism71.44 % 
Islam0.21 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.02 % 
Unknown0.14 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent0.00 %
Protestant0.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic0.00 %
 
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
   
 
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Evangelicals have only a very small representation among all who claim to be Christians.
Least-Reached: No
GSEC Status:Level 6   Greater than or equal to 10% Evangelical
 
 
Bible Translation Status
Submit Update:
Bible Portions: 1906-1961
New Testament:
1938-1991
Complete Bible: 1981
Possible Bible Sources: Forum of Bible Agencies
 World Bible Finder
 World Christian Resource Directory
 Gospel Go
 
 
Ministry Resources [7]
Audio RecordingsMegaVoice Audio Bible and Stories
Audio RecordingsAudio Bible teaching (GRN)
Audio RecordingsStory of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project ...
Film / VideoGod's Story Video
Film / VideoJesus Film: view in Bodo
Film / VideoMagdalena (Jesus Film Project)
GeneralGot Questions Ministry
 
 
Ministry Activity
Register Ministry Activity:
Networking: Visit LinkingGlobalVoices.org for networking possibilities.
Description: Register your ministry activity among this people group. Contact the Adopt-A-People Clearinghouse and Unleashed for the Unreached to learn about others that might be focused on this people group.
 
Data Notes
Data Sources
 
 

Mech in India

Peoples
               
Geographic
Global                 Global
           
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
           
   
People Cluster
       
Region
   
    Garo-Tripuri     South Asia    
     
People-Group-Across-Countries
   
Country
   
      Mech India    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Mech in India          
      Religion Language  
      Hinduism     Boro  
    Global    
Language
 
    All Religions                              
   
Religion
                             

Direct link:  http://legacy.joshuaproject.net/people-profile.php?peo3=17526&rog3=IN