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Kogi in Colombia


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Kogi in Colombia map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
20,000 Kogi Ethnic Religions 1.60 % 1.60 % No   

Kogi in Colombia

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Introduction / History
In the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta of Colombia there lives a group of people named Kogi, existing somewhat closely to the way they did before Christopher Columbus arrived in the hemisphere. Their name means "jaguar" in their language. When Caribs invaded around 1000, they fled to the mountains. Their location there led to the retention of their way of life but also preserved them from the Spanish invasion.

What are their lives like?
The Kogi create their own clothing from plant to finished product. Nearly everyone wears these white clothes. They live in round huts made with stone, mud, and palm leaves. Kogi men and women all carry traditional bags, made by the women, across their shoulders.

They cultivate sugar and coffee to sell. The sugar is made into a hardened brown substance.

There is a meeting hut exclusively for the men where community decisions are made. Mamas or priests are very important to the decision making process.

Kogi women are seldom mistreated and are valued as being very connected to Mother Earth. When two men meet, they exchange handfuls of coca leaves.

What are their beliefs?
"Aluna" or "The Great Mother" is their deity. She is the earth who is alive. A nearby mountain is known as "The Heart of the World" and the Kogi are the "Elder Brothers" who care for it. They see nature as needing protection and oppose the mistreatment of it.

Mamas are village priests who undergo strict training. Selected male children train in a dark cave for the first nine years of their lives. Mamas and the child's mother care for these young priests inside the cave until they are ready to begin their practice in the society. It is believed that the mama can hear the words of their god to pass along to the tribe.

The Kogi believe in complementary opposites. Even wrong-doing is necessary as the complement to right.

After death a soul is considered to be on a journey for nine days and nights, after which it returns to an existence alongside the living Kogi.


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Country: Colombia
Continent: South America
Region: America, Latin
Persecution Rank:30 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: No
Location in Country:La Guajira and Magdalena departments: north, east, and west slopes of Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.
(Source: Ethnologue 2016)
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Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Kogi
People Name General: Kogi
Alternate People Names:
ROP3 Code: 102256
Joshua Project People ID: 11402
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 20,000
Population all Countries: 20,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: Latin-Caribbean Americans
People Cluster: South American Indigenous
People Name General: Kogi
Ethnic Code: MIR39e
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Kogi (20,000 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): kog    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity1.60 %(Evangelical: 1.60 %)
Ethnic Religions98.40 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent5.00 %
Protestant40.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic55.00 %
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Few evangelicals and few who claim to be Christians. Little, if any, history of Christianity.
Least-Reached: Yes
GSEC Status:Level 1   Less than 2% Evangelical. Some evangelical resources available, but no active church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: 2000–2014
New Testament:
Complete Bible: None Reported
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 RecordingsOnline New Testament (FCBH)
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app as APK file fro ...
Text / Printed MatterBible: Cogui
Text / Printed MatterOneHope resources for children and youth
Text / Printed MatterOnline Bible text (Scripture Earth)
Ministry Activity
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Data Notes
Data Sources

Kogi in Colombia

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    South American Indigenous     America, Latin    
      Kogi Colombia    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Kogi in Colombia          
      Religion Language  
      Ethnic Religions     Kogi  
    All Religions                              

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