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Siyar in Nepal


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Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
600 Nepali Buddhism 0.00 % 0.00 %   

Siyar in Nepal

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According to a 1980 source, between 2,200 and 3,500 Tsum (or Siyar) people live along the southern slopes of the Himalayan Range in central Nepal. In the 25 years since this estimate was made, it is thought that the population of the Tsum may have grown to exceed 5,000. The Tsum inhabit a number of villages in the northern Gorkha District of the Gandaki Zone, a short distance away from the China-Nepal border. The main Tsum village is called Chongong (also known as Chekampar).

Chongong is one of the overnight stops for trekkers doing the Langtang Trek. One guide book states, 'The trail descends through forest to the Langtang Khola at 1,890 metres [6,200 feet] then follows the river upstream, crossing from the southern to northern bank to reach Chongong at 2,380 metres [7,800 feet]...the villages around are in Tibetan style with stone walls around the fields and herds of yaks.' Unlike the barren Tibetan Plateau to the north, the Tsum area receives the monsoon rains. 'As a consequence the landscape is lush and green, and the fields support good harvests of corn in addition to the staple grains.'

The Tsum are also known as the Chumba, or Shar, because they live along the banks of the Shar (Eastern) River. Official books issued by the Nepali government tend to call them by these alternate names.

The closest neighbours to the Tsum are the Nubri people, who live along the upper reaches of the Buri Gandaki River just to the west. The Tsum area is just north of Ganesh Himal, which stands at 7,406 metres (24,292 ft.) above sea level.

The Tsum speak a Central Tibetan language, but linguistic studies have shown that it only shares 71 per cent to 78 per cent lexical similarity with Nubri, 60 per cent to 66 per cent with Lhasa Tibetan and 66 per cent with Kyerung. Few Tsum can speak more than a few words and phrases of Nepali. Their isolated mountain hideout has separated them from the main body of Nepali culture and language, and in most ways they are more aligned with Tibet than with Nepal. Many Tsum are traders, carrying grain and modern appliances from Nepal to Tibet, where they trade their goods for salt and wool.

Tibetan Buddhism dominates the lives of the Tsum people. Every family follows Buddha. They depend on lamas to keep peace between their communities and the spirits, and they spare no effort to placate the demons that can bring disaster to the Tsum's communities if they are offended. One visitor commented, 'The people of Nubri and Tsum are Buddhists...actively so, quite possibly because of their close proximity to and greater commerce across the northern frontier with Tibet. '

Very few Tsum people have ever been exposed to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Most are too busy with their daily lives to care enough to seek the truth. Most are content to follow Buddha, as countless generations of their ancestors have done before them.

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Country: Nepal
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, South
10/40 Window: Yes
Population in Country:600
Largest Provinces:
Gandaki (600)
Location in Country:The Tsum live along the southern slopes of the Himalayan Range in central Nepal. They inhabit a number of villages in the northern Gorkha District of the Gandaki Zone. The main Tsum village is Chongong.
(Source: Peoples of the Buddhist World, 2004)
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Country Map:Political map
Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Siyar
People Name General: Siyar
Alternate People Names:
ROP3 Code: 117305
Joshua Project People ID: 15598
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 600
Population all Countries: 600
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
People Cluster: South Asia Buddhist
People Name General: Siyar
Ethnic Code: CNN25
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Nepali (600 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): npi    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Buddhism
Major Religions:
Buddhism100.00 % 
Christianity0.00 %(Evangelical: 0.00 %)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
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]   Few evangelicals and few who claim to be Christians. Little, if any, history of Christianity.
Least-Reached: Yes
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: 1850-1961
New Testament:
Complete Bible: 1914-2012
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
Audio RecordingsOnline Audio Scripture
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsStory of Jesus audio
Film / VideoGod's Story video
Film / VideoJesus Film: view in Nepali
Film / VideoLUMO film of Gospels
Film / VideoMagdalena video
Film / VideoMy Last Day video, anime
Film / VideoNew Way (Naya Goreto)
Film / VideoStory of Jesus for Children
Film / VideoThe Hope Video
Film / VideoWorld Christian Videos
GeneralBible for Children
GeneralBiblical answers to your questions
GeneralGospel resources links
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app as APK file
Text / Printed MatterBible: Comic Book Version
Text / Printed MatterBible: Nepali
Text / Printed MatterChildren and youth resources
Text / Printed MatterJesus Messiah comic book
Text / Printed MatterLiteracy primer for Nepali
Text / Printed MatterThe Ancient Path
Text / Printed MatterTools for faith conversations
Text / Printed MatterTopical Scripture booklets and Bible stu ...
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Data Notes
Data Sources

Siyar in Nepal

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    South Asia Buddhist     Asia, South    
      Siyar Nepal    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Siyar in Nepal          
      Religion Language  
      Buddhism     Nepali  
    All Religions                              

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