Beliefs and practices
Hinduism is the major religion of Nepal. In the 2001 census, approximately 95.6 percent of the Nepalese people identified themselves as Hindus. Buddhists constitute 10.7% while Muslims are minority. The remainder followed other religions, including Christianity. The national calendar of Nepal, Bikram Sambat (B.S.), is a solar Hindu calendar essentially the same to that widespread in North India as a religious calendar, and is based on Vedic principles of time-keeping.
The geographical distribution of religious groups revealed a preponderance of Hindus, accounting for at least 87 percent of the population in every region. Among the Tibeto-Nepalese, those most influenced by Hinduism were the Magar, Sunwar, and Rai peoples.
Hindu Foundation of the Kingdom of Nepal
Historians and local traditions say that a Hindu sage named "Ne" established himself in the valley of Kathmandu during prehistoric times, and that the word "Nepal" means the place protected ("pala" in Sanskrit) by the sage Ne. He performed religious ceremonies at Teku, the confluence of the Bagmati and Bishnumati rivers. According to legend he selected a pious cowherd to be the first of the many kings of the Gopala Dynasty. These rulers are said to have ruled Nepal for over 500 years. He selected Bhuktaman to be the first king in the line of the Gopal (Cowherd) Dynasty. The Silncan Gopal dynasty ruled for 621 years. Yakshya Gupta was the last king of this dynasty.
According to Skanda Purana, a rishi called "Ne" or "Nemuni" used to live in Himalaya. In the Pashupati Purana, he is mentioned as a saint and a protector. He is said to have practiced penance at the Bagmati and Kesavati rivers and to have taught his doctrines there too.
Hindu Symbolism of Nepal
The pennant is an important Hindu flag that is help atop Hindu temples.
It is believed that Lord Vishnu had organized the Nepali people and given them this flag, with the sun and moon as emblems on it. In a Hindu Purana, it is written that it was Lord Shiva who handed the flag to Lord Vishnu, and then Lord Vishnu to Lord Indra, for the purpose for battling demons.
Nepalese royalty, including Lord Buddha have always been viewed as avatars (or incarnations) of god Vishnu.
List of Festivals in Nepal
- Mata Tirtha Snan (Mother's Day)
- Buddha Jayanti
- Ghanta Karna Chaturdasi
- Janai Purnima,Rakshya Bandhan,Khumbeshwor Mela Patan
- Shree Krishna Janmastami
- Gokarna Aunsi (Father's Day)
- Teej Ko Darkhane Din
- Indrajatra(Holiday Only in Kathmandu)
- Dashain Holidays
- Tihar Holidays
- Maghe Sankranti
- Shree Panchami
- Maha Shiva Ratri
- Fagun Purnima (Holi)
- Ghode Jatra
- Shree Ram Nawami
- Bagh Jatra
- Bhairav Kumari Jatra
- Chaite Dasain
- Gaura Parva
- Guru Purnima
- Rato Macchendranath Jatra
- Mani Rimdu
- Neel Barahi Pyakhan
- Rath Yatra
- Sita Vivaha Panchami
- Tamu Dhee
- Tansen Jatra
- Taya Macha
- Yomari Punhi
However, there has traditionally been a great deal of intermingling of Hindu and Buddhist beliefs. Many of the people regarded as Hindus in the 1981 census could also in some senses be called Buddhists. Hindus long have worshipped at Buddhist temples and Buddhists at Hindu temples. The reason for this is that both Hinduism and Buddhism have common roots as dharmic religions, and over most of their history have not been seen as separate communions, but rather rival tendencies within a shared religious tradition. Because of such dual faith practices (or mutual respect), the differences between Hindus and Buddhists have been very subtle and academic in nature; Hindus and Buddhists have never engaged in any religious conflicts for past millennia.
Hindu population for various ethnic groups
Hindu population for each district
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 W.B., P. 34 Land of the Gurkhas
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 The Ancient Period
- ↑ Balfour, P. 195 Cyclopædia of India and of Eastern and Southern Asia, :
- ↑ Alone In Kathmandu
- ↑ Prasad, P. 4 The life and times of Maharaja Juddha Shumsher Jung Bahadur Rana of Nepal
- ↑ Khatri, P. 16 The Postage Stamps of Nepal
- ↑ Gorkhapatra Corporation The Nepalese Perspective
- ↑ P. 10 The Lotus & the Flame: An Account on Nepalese Culture By Dhooswan Saymi, Dhūsvāṃ Sāyami
- ↑ http://www.cbs.gov.np/Population/Monograph/Chapter%2003%20%20Social%20Composition%20of%20the%20Population.pdf
- ↑ www.cbs.gov.np/Population/National%20Report%202001/tab18.htm
- Shree Krishna Pranami Youth Council Nepal
- Shree Radha Madhava Samiti Nepal
- Sri Aurobindo Yoga Mandir Nepal
- Janaki Temple Birthplace of Shri Seeta Devi
- Maharshi Sant Sevi Temples in Nepal
- Shiva Kailash Kala Mandir
|This image has been taken from the Library of Congress Photo Archive and is believed to be in the public domain.|