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A Research Monograph : Group Traditions, Evangelic Christianity And Conversion.

                                    A Research Monograph
Course No : ANP-369

                                        Group Traditions,
                 Evangelic Christianity And Conversion.

      A Study On The Context Of Evangelic Christianity To The Garos Conversion And Changes Of Traditions In The North-Frontal Region Of Bangladesh.

Text Box: Submitted by:
Kalyan Bhushan Debanath
3rd year 2nd semester
Reg. No: 0098210286
Department of Anthropology, 
SUST, Sylhet-3114. 
Text Box: Supervised by:
Noor Mahammad Majumdar
Department of Anthropology, 
SUST, Sylhet-3114.


Shahjalal University of Science & Technology, Sylhet-3114.



Chapter One: (Identity Crisis)
1.1   Introduction
1.2   Statement of the Problem
1.3   Who is the Garo and who is a Christian Garo?

Chapter Two: (Background and Journeying Through Historical Worlds of Conversion)
2.1 Origin of the Garos
2.2 Early days of the Garos with Political Context
2.3 North Eastern Hills of South Asia and Evangelical Christianity:

Chapter Three: (Study Materials & Assumptions I.e., Propositions)
3.1 Objectives of the Study or the Problem Field of the Study
3.2 Scope and Importance of Research and Their Socio-Cultural Presence
3.3 Methodology and Field-work Situation
3.4 Some Theoretical Aspects and Book Reviewing in Contextualizing

Chapter Four: (Non-Converted to Convert)
4.1 Habitual Way of Life and Group Boundaries
4.2 World Views and Acceptance of Outsiders (Contact and Incorporation)
4.3 New Search for Ultimate Divinity
4.4 Reasons behind the Growth of Christianity

Chapter Five: (Impacts and New thoughts for Group Management)
5.1 Conversion with Modernization
5.2 Suggestions for Future Research and My Limitations

Reference cited
Maps and Illustrations


My respondents of Mandis and non-Mandis and innumerable people of different cultural backgrounds have responded to my field inquires, many of whom accepted me hospitably among them as their “brother”, “grandson”, “nephew”, friend or guest. They took me simple minded and cordially of whom I had gone to. All of them are suitable to have my gratitude for their great trust, patience and kind hospitality. I am thankful very much to the following persons: Satya Sangma (Satya Sir), Rev. Manindranath Marak, Rev. Pijush Kanti Baul, Suvash and Biva Debanath, Parul Rani Debanath, MD. Mosharraf Karim, Uthpal Dash, Binoy Da, Satya Debanath, Khatrya and many others for their real and exceptional cooperation, patience, insight. I am also indebted to my young friends Thengsu Sangma, Sumi Marak and their friend circle, who were not only hospitable to me but also in many ways helpful in providing me with practical assistance and insightful information about their community.
            From first to last in this trip I am indebted to Ratan Debanath for friendly assistance and insight and particularly to Sagor Debanath, a goldsmith, who introduced me to the Mandis and Spent a lot of time with me discussing many aspects of Garo community.
            I would also like to extend my gratitude to the authorities of BEHC (Birisiri Evangelical Holiness Church); EBMC (Ethel Bese Memorial Social Welfare Central); The Baptist convention Church, Uthrail, Birisiri; Birisiri Upojatiya Cultural Academy, for providing me with valuable information.
            I am deeply indebted to my supervisor Noor Mohammad Majumdar, Lecturer at the Department of Anthropology Shahjalal University of Science and Technology, Sylhet. Under his supervision I am able to make Psychological design for the construction of theoretical and Theological structure of my thesis. He showed a keen interest in my work and deli gently commented, criticized and provided suggestions in the process of writing this thesis. I do appreciate his conscientious involvement.
            In the early phase of writing and making my research proposal I received several helpful comments and criticism from my initial supervisor, Hasan-Al Shafie, Asst. Professor at Anthropology Department of SUST (Now at the University of Dhaka). His process of teaching was so enjoyable. I can’t forget him. I am also indebted to Dr. Abdul Awal Biswas for spending time in going through my research proposal and for his positive feedback that inspired me. I would also like to thank all of my teachers, seniors’ academic, friendly classmates and members of the anthropology family in SUST, Sylhet who one way or another have contributed to my knowledge of anthropology. My special gratitude goes to Anjan Bhadra sir for his effort to improve my English.
            Finally, I acknowledge the support of my family, my father-mother and lovely sister for their practical assistance and encouragement and financial support without which my fieldwork could not be completed. Moreover I am most grateful for great patience of whom that eternally inspired behind me.

This chapter deals with aspects or features of social organization of the Garo community and of their transformation by which recognition of them will be clear. The Garos idea of homogeneity in essence of all human beings and the solidarity of the individual with his group that is diversified and complexes in accordance with their innumerable traditional practices. Their construction of group identities is critically undermined by the continual processes of disregarding as a cultural dogma in appropriating with cruel conspiracy for cheating them. They were not educated and simply believe of neighborhood on the familiar dwellers. This was the opportunity of artificial cultural construction to treat them unnatural and introducing evangelism made their cultural discontinuities. This break of traditional practices makes new identities. Here, I am also describing their dualities and Bi-presence of individual with their theological ideas that inherent in group traditions and of their ideas that inherent in group traditions and of their expectations for betterment that causes the success of Christianity. 
It is now an accepted fact that the culture of the Garo people is being converted at Birshiri-Durgapur in Netrakona. This is mainly due to the process of converting and the acculturation into these areas of the Garo people with the dominant culture similar other factors. This paper deals with the aspect of cultural change that is affected by Christianization. Their interactions with the mainstream people are becoming so smooth now that they need not to be identified as a separate indigenous people or the ethnic people. Although most of them are converted now, their traditional practices are not being vanished into air performing in a new shaped form of culture. Moreover, new ideas and practices are included. Now to them, religion is not only a mental satisfaction by pleasing the spirits in a capturing situation of the chief system but also it does with a modern way to maintain their livelihood. Introducing new technology, modernization and/or, commercialization and/or expansion of the western society’s process is going on. It seems that their former cultural traits are going to be faked. Their cultural academy has been introduced in the role of preserving these diminishing cultural traits as well as their recent culture.  
Besides the Hindus, Muslims, Christians and Buddhists, indigenous peoples such as the Garos, Hajongs, Hodis, Palias and Daluis and many others dwell in its forestlands. There are only the Garos and the Hajongs at Birshiri-durgapur in Netrakona District of Bangladesh.
The Garos have an ethnic identity. They have a different cultural life and diversified beliefs, cult of deities, worships, religious celebrations, social rites and   ceremonies. The matrilineal Garo people also known as Mandi (human being) too perform many dances as religious rituals (“In The Sylvan Shadows”- Abdus Sattar). There are separate dances for occasions like weeding, harvesting, sowing, funeral and many others. The Mandis have a rich tradition of folk songs too. They have an own language. Their language family is Tibeto-Burmese in the language branch of Bara which practitioners are the Garos, Hajongs, Koaches, Mrongs (“Bangladesh, Land, Forest and Forest People”-----SHED).  
According to the most recent government official Statistics (Census Report, 1991), the number of ethnic community is 29. However, in that report the same tribe has been listed as two separate ethnic communities in the two cases. In that consideration, the ethnic communities would be numbered into 27 (Dr. Kibriaul Khaleque). The total population of these groups is about 1.2 million (about 1205978) which is the 1.13% of whole Bangladesh. Here, the Garo population is about 64280.
In my research area, physically the Garos and the Hajongs are living in a natural harmony almost as same as to each other to look at. Nevertheless, in those two communities, there is a ethnic boundary that differentiates each other. However, it may create a controversial position to identify the Garos from the Hajongs. When their religious behavior expresses one of the most important parts of their traditions  with different activities as the discrete groups of people, i.e. ethnic units then they are culturally been defined.
The differences between former cultural behaviors to newly shaped cultural behaviors are in clear sight. Culture is the way of describing human behavior; there are discrete groups of people, i.e. ethnic groups, to correspond to each culture.
Culture contact and change is a very widespread process under the present conditions as dependence on the products and institutions of industrial societies spread in all parts of the world. I want to analyze the interconnection by looking at the agents of change.
The word “change” denotes a difference in anything observed over some period of time change also takes the form of replacement. A new material or non-material form supplants an old one. However, ethnic groups maintain themselves and thus clearly affected. But because of having the variable of regional security they are not fundamentally changed. This process is going on generation by generation and at last it will be presented in a cultural evolution.
Religion can be a powerful force in cultural change as well as in social change. Many religious movements have arisen in response to the spread of colonialism, European domination and the world capitalist economy. Often such movements emerge from acculturation, particularly when natives come into sustained contact with citizen of industrial societies but are denied their wealth, technology and living standards. Some of these movements attempt to explain European domination and wealth and achieve similar success magically by mimicking European behavior and manipulating symbols of the desired life style.
Evangelical Christianity is related to the protection of the historical catholic Emancipation Act in 1829 in Wellington’s government and strengthened religious toleration of the Church of England. With the growth of nationality of England and the development of capitalism with the revolution of modern development is related to the rise of Protestantism. The land of England is not only separate from the land of Europe as island but also separate from Rome and the Roman church religiously. With the continuity of separateness of Roman Church and the reforms revealed in 16 century against Catholic Church, Protestantism originated. There are seven type of Protestantism constraints where evangelical is the one type baptism. Those together constitute ‘The Church of England’ with the central power of ‘The Great Council’ in England. The spread of evangelism related to the colonial power of the English. I will also describe with details of that part in this chapter.
On the other hand, the Garos are as a homogenous group with their traditional practices and behavioral expression. Though there have been created a break of the broad cultural emancipation after conversion they can also be identified as a ‘ethnic group’, group, ‘community’ and so forth depending on the context.
There is a broad cultural (western) construction of ‘hethnic’ with the context of ‘ethnic’ in relation to the identification of non-Christians religiously animistic worshippers that ‘Shangsharek’. But these religious practices are treated by the white-skinned colonial evangelists as a practice of cruelness. The evangelists wanted to divert them from their own religion for the best controlling cold politics and practices with the humanitarian forces of religion. Here is an arisen question that why other worldly big religious (those have also another type of evangelism) are facing failures in converting? Actually they are not facing as such failure as we observing different religious ethnic groups. More details will be discussed to the next in that essay.
The Khasis and the Garos both are matrilineal communities. But only into the Garos of Birisiri-Durgapur has showed an odd coincidence that Christianity is the strong powers of conversion. The pretty Garo villages have become entirely Christian and they owe for evangelization to the labors of missionaries from America. The evangelical church organization is curiously democratic and the pastor maintains it with an ordinary administration capacity. They undertake some questions which attract the candidates for baptism and say about that suitability. Evangelization processes with school teaching and training which accompanies it, the missionaries are showing very great and influencing power of conversion in whole over the world.
            Here, I want to represent some preliminary ideas about the Garos. Their real identity is related with the term MANDES (human beings). Mandes are commonly known as the Garos. But it is very difficult to retrace how they have become known as the Garos and where from the word Garo has been derived. If we go through history the Bengali influence with be in clear insight. The immediate neighbors call them as such manner. Many times I have heard in my boyhood that the Garo identity is a matter of shame. Boys have cited many times against another to express hate calling ‘Bhaita Garo’ as such. Again Garo Hills and the extensive areas inhabited by the Mandes were surrounded or covered by the arbitrarily defined areas of Bengali Jamindars such as Karaibari, Sherpur, Sushong etc. My field research area Birisiri-Durgapur is Known as the surroundings of Sushong Raj Bongsho. Moreover, the names of the important villages and Bazars at the boundaries through which the neighbors had trading intercourse, such as Mehadeo, Durgapur, Baghmara, Sibbari, Mohendraganj, Garobadha, Rajabala, Phulbari, Tikrikilla etc. were undoubtedly named by the Bengalis. In the year 1903-04A.D. in the Primary schools of Garo Hills District, Bengali was introduced as the medium of instructions which is found till 1928 or so the Hill Mouzadars reports on Akhiugs were submitted in Bengali also in my field area the Sushong Raja Kali Prasanna Lahiri was surrounded with his inhabitants of Garos and others. His relative Moni Singh is a historical person who had organized here the peasant movement named ‘Tanko Movement’ against Jamindary Tanko tradition of share cultivation.
            The Bengali speaking people call the deep forests as ‘Gar’ as such: Joyenssahi Gar, Bhawal Gar etc. The Mandes were inhabited in those forest areas that are ‘Gar’. The inhabitants of ‘Gar’ were called as the ‘Garos’. These are the possible historical and etymological explanation of the term ‘Garo’ from the world ‘Gar’.
            Another mention that the word ‘Garo’ derived from the world ‘Gaur’ (a place near Murshidabad District) is made by the Bikrampur Thihas (in Bengali). The place called ‘Gaur’ where the people of that area believed to have first embraced the Islamic religion and the Muslims of Garo Hills and Goalpara who came from the northern Sylhet District (now in Bangladesh), are known as ‘Garias’. In course of time, the coinage of the word ‘Garo’ might have taken the shape in the same process. Again the word ‘Garo’ is may be side tracked from the original Mongoloid stock ‘Bodos’ (Boros). The Garos know and call themselves as Mandes just like the Mizos of Mizoram. Ho and Karku groups of Chotanagpur know themselves as ‘the Man’. May be the word ‘Garo’ is a foreign word which have no meaning actually in context of the own language. In any way the aseription of such epithet depends of the process of naming by others most probably the Bengali speaking people emancipating the Garos or recording as such by the Bengali Jamindars in the records of rayots to recognize this community from other communities. In the same process of classification as ‘Tribe’ or ‘the aboriginal Tribe’ has appeared in subsequent historical or administrative records with various imaginative coloring by the Govt. official fancy. The name ‘Meghaloya’ has also emerged with as much as romanticism.
            The word Mande belongs to a sense of dignity and valor where the word ‘Garo’ does not mean as such as intelligible abstraction as the word ‘Achik’ means high Hills. Mande is used not only in the meaning of a man or a common man but also is used with the emphasis of differentiating from others as prefix and suffix to other words such as- Mande Song, Nokmande. It has particular and distinctive uses with the significance of their different speaking language. Moreover, some Scholars have the view that the term ‘Garo’ is derived from the word ‘Gangaridoe’ mentioned in the periplas of the Ereatrian Sea is difficult to accept. Mandes lived together in relation with Koaches particularly in Bhawal Gar and Joyenssahi Gar region in earlier Mymensingh District never called themselves as Garos rather called themselves as Mandais or hadis identified by the Koaches.
            “The Garos do not call themselves Garo”, (‘The Garos’-by Major A. Playfair; 3). They use the word ‘Achik’ or ‘Mande’. The original to the first word is hill hence the meaning hill man and second word means simply ‘Man’. The name Garo was perhaps given by the British Government but the root or origin is quite unknown. It is said that the derivation was from the name of a village Gar in Bengal. The so-called Garo call them Mande or Mandai. These quotation from “the Garos” by D.N. Mazumdar and ‘The Garos and their customary Laws and usages’ by K.R. Marak respectively used by Dinang Sangma in “Introduction of the Name Mande of ‘the Janira’.
            Mandes are living now scattered over several states in Meghalaya, Assam, West Bengal, Tripura and also in Bangladesh at Netrokona, Mymensingh, Jamalpur and Tangai Districts. The total population of the Mendes group will be about 8.5 lakhs where only about 3.5 lakhs are ‘Lamdani’ or plain Garos and in Bangladesh the Mandes population is about 64280 which are the 18.37% of whole plain Garos. About 95% of them are converted now. The Mandes group and clans are as follows.

The divisions of Mandes in groups:-
1. Ambengs
2. Matchis
3. Awes
4. Akawes
5. Chiboks
6. Chsiaks
7. Duals
8. Braks
9. Gara Ganehing
10. Atongs
11. Rugas.

            They have no greater cultural differences but only some regional linguistic differences and have no sense of sectional biasness. According to such divisions never create any clash among them even though most they are embracing Christianity. Each of the divisions had only two main groups originally i.e. Sangma and Mark. Later group emerged as Momin and a very recent group is the Shira.
            The original Sangma and Marak groups have different clans in numerous. Some of these are as follows-

Sangma Clans
Marak Clans
Ajong etc. etc
Dofo etc. etc.

Mamin Clans
Dalbot (Original Sangma)
Chiran (originally Sangma) etc.

          All of the sections and clans know and call themselves as Mande which had a homogeneity before had been introduced with Christianity. Various types of Christian sects and trends have divided them in various practices of Christianity by regulating religiously a great for from their traditional and customary practices as an increasing diminishing power. Evangelical Christian church and organization is one of great power in there.


To explore in the processes of conversion for a religion can causes a cultural change. Religion is deeply integrated in a cultural system. As a cultural institution as well as other social institutions, religion represents the non-material or idealistic human behavior in relation to other subsistence activities as a whole culture. It is an emotional part of human behavior. Nobody wants to change his religion without any extreme necessity in a general sense. In other word, although anybody is forced to or interested to take a new religion, he cannot escape from his habituated culture. This is why new behavior is shaped by their former behavioral basis, which can be called the “shaped culture”. This is the cause that a drastically cultural change cannot be expected and it is a long term processes. However, it is the fact that force is not the determination to adopt its culture to changing circumstances. It is the fact of their choosing in the constructed from of having betterment for them.
In my research area there are living most of the converted Garo people in a “shaped culture”. Nevertheless, we have not enough information about their changed cultural pattern that demands enough inquiry to know about their living condition their present situation.  As because of they are in a cultural crisis for their adjustment in a new situation and Moreover, if the processes are going on in an extensive form then their diminishing cultural traits will be the matter of preserving or the matter of historical age in the future. Already they are in the position. When I entered in a church at six P, M, I saw that most of new generation people were performing their prayer. When they are not being able to be introduced or to practice their former behaviors then the cultural evolution has been done in course of time.
             There are most important differences between cultural evolution and genetic evolution. It is that cultural evolution can often decide whether to accept and follow the way their parents behave or not to inherit certain genes. When most of the individuals change their behavior and beliefs, we say that the culture has changed. This is why; cultural change has the possibility to occur much more rapidly than genetic change.
Nevertheless, culture is always changing. Because, culture consists of   learned patterns of behavior and belief, cultural traits can be unlearned and learned a new one, as human needs are changeable.
It is not only my concern but also many of the anthropological fieldworkers to find out the changing patterns of those who have the different culture struggling for their betterment in their own way and loosing their own culture dominating by and/or encapsulating with the mainstream culture. Moreover, development workers should know their real situation to take suitable development programs.

 Identity Crisis: How can I recognize a Garo?

I have faced some problematic identification of the Garos when the word “Garo” is used on the hide of the Garos. I have spoken with them by using the words both “Garo” and “Mande”. When I recognize them as the ‘Garo’, they mind nothing but a greater response has been collected from them at Birisiri after calling them as a ‘Mande’ indeed. But it was a critical job that I had have recognized them with the help of my respondents and local Bengalis i.e. Bangladeshis. One of the Garo women who directs her own tea-stall with grocery shop urges me with great sorrow about their Bangladeshi (or Bengali) citizenship treated as minority people and because they don’t speak Bengali well by the Bangladeshi majority people. They are habituated such like treating as if being a Garo is a great sin. They are originally or descendent the Garos but they were not considered Human. Such types of consoling words also have been uttered by the Missionaries now then. So they have to be known about me from my name as a Bengali (Bangladeshi) Hindu researcher then, the problem has been harder. But they have good relationship with many majority people that I have to manage them for my rapport building cooperation.
            The Garos at Birisiri live with another minority people called as the Hajongs. Both of them are so as possible similar in physical characteristics. The Hajongs are also matrilineal same as the Garos. But the Hajong are Hinduized and speaks in Bengali. “Akoonjee” is the small Islamised groups who speaks Bengali and has a great assemble physically with the Garos and the Hajongs. But I come to be known about them a very little. Here, only the Garos speak in “Bodo” and also in Bengali language. On the other hand, the Garos have various inter-groups close to the caste type which influenced them to perform different traditional and religious cult and deities, ceremonies based in agriculture, rituals and linguistically in a dialectical variation. It is very confusion to distinguish them in a clear separation.
            Here, religion may be the effective identification criterion. In present situation such type identification goes more behind the non-modernized population. The younger generation looks like more “modern” and “progressive” that is the final destination of the evangelical Christian Missionaries by converting. Some embarrassments was associated with the recognition of them separately who were relatively in a more closely resemblance. Moreover, the Bengali Hindu culture influenced them effectively. Actually they were in a great similarity of performing religious activities traditionally in the “Shangsharek” form to the Hajong “Sanatan” (Hindu) who form the Hindu caste now but retain only a bit of separation from the majority Hindus. There are also a differentiation between the Asol (original) Garos and the Nakal (converted to the Muslim) Garos. Very a few of the original Garos are Islamized. On the other hand, the Asol Garos are mostly the “Achik” (Hilly Garos) Garos but the “Mandis” (plain Garos) are a little bit “Asol” Garo. Now most of Garos are Christianized and with the great influence of the majority people the Garo new generation in vastly evangelized. Moreover, the educated and job holder Garos are in a great connectedness to the various “modern” material concern and their dress up, style, way, way of life, processes of approaching with unknown one are nothing differentiable than the tide of majority people. But if they have anything different ness then there also be nothing to treat them as the Garos. The harm that has been created it should be removed. Because of the terms “Achik” and “Mandi” are unfamiliar to the majority people and relatively the Garo is known then I should reach to the equalizing identity that they want to be known by the approaching the work Garo into a pride. I think if any Khan Pathan has the pride to be known as a Bangladeshi or Bengali then they also must have the pride to be known as Bangladeshi Garos. When they have become in a greater identity then what will be done by knowing their group identity.
            When the dominant cultures are assimilating with and homogenizing the “smaller” cultures then the plurality in a dying culture. The Garo group identity also is in a threat and having the diminishing position. But if we consider of such type group traditions are the great plurality and the plurality is the great beauty of humankind then minority would not be any obstacle for the majority. On the other hand, it’s a moral obligation to the Christian Missionaries (though they are greatly involved with them) that how they meet challenges of the Garo society or how they are being integrated to the wider societies. At this situation responsibilities of course must goes to the Missionaries and surrounded majorities as well as the Bangladesh Government for the protection from being bothered by others.

Journeying through the Historical worlds of conversion.

Origin of the GAROS:
origin is the fundamental of any kind of knowing to restore it into knowledge for further evaluation and to treat it with it’s status based reacting styles of cognition. The Garos who never call them as such word rather recognize themselves as the “Achicks” or the ‘Mandis’. Such kind of contradiction urges to know them with their original statuses. Here, the authorized power of evangelization involved with such knowing by various ethnographers and Anthropologists who constructed and interacted with some obvious roles of conduct. They have to be known about the general characteristics with enormous aspects of knowing for formulating the further strategies of converting. Because of being a distinctive group in tradition corresponding immigration breaking reality of their unfamiliar situation minimized their habitual and customary practices with religious subjugation. But biasness must not be freed perfectly. As academician obviously have the biasness to know and to teach others according to purposively being taken Owings for the gratification. Again when it is coming with trained persons or teachers, then there have no questions of being failure for practicing own spirituality with politicizing. The Missionaries have done with a great success of evangelizing from the starting of education into a socializing training of Christianity. Consciously or unconsciously the Garo group has a homogeneous recognition although they have some differentiations which that were known by the Missionaries of their separateness and obligatory to perform with own origin where there were the segregation power of the British.
            Above such discussion demands for various origin oriented aspects or asking as like as “what are the origins of the Garos?” or “where did they come from?” or “what were their language, religion and original life style?” there are evangelical and spiritual questions that “where did you come from? “What will be your destiny?” “Why you are living for and for whom?”, “do you know the truth?” and “do you know of yourself?” etc.etc. I have found these cognitive questions are neither difficult nor easy to answer.
            So have to realize various aspects of migratory moving individually or with groups, contradictorily transformations of languages, cultural contacts, similarities and dissimilarities of physical and traditional practices.
            Unfortunately, we know about the origins of Mandi culture. They have no written records of their own language or written scripts of own yet that is only oral or written with Bengali or English scripts that may give us hints. This limits our knowledge about their past accurately or profoundly. Mandi agricultural elements are in a partly which like some elements of Bengali agriculture very likely came from South-east Asia. Moreover, their ancient religious myth of “Shangsharek” has found some similarities with various “Sanatan” (animistic Hindus before contact with Aryan) myths in enormous gods and goddesses. Again ‘Sanatan’ has a trend of “Shangshar Dharma” (religion of domesticity and ancestral) that is very likely to the “Shangsharek”. These do not mean that most of the Garos are South East Asian or Indian sub-continental. Mandi grow some of their main/root crops which were found to be grown in parts of Southeast Asia for a very long time that may be for several thousands years. Various crops that the Mandi grow recently as like Rice, has a history of many centuries and was brought in only recently by a migrating group.
            Migration is the most common characteristics for various groups as well as individuals. But some traits may have been passed from person to person, group to grout after being arrival and transformations have been occurred not with the qualities of original rather than with the adjustment or the best suited new orientation ecology or shaped by after being oriented with new culture of course partly with religious. Moreover, some customs were probably invented on the spot. In the respect of “Shangsharek” I have found more similarities of the Garos or the Mandi with the Khasis both physically and religiously than the ‘Sanatan’. But the Khasis were Hinduised that those were not in original Hindus or “Sanatan’s” then what will be the proposition that they both are originally same ancestral or similar. Moreover, we find various closest kinship ties from their mother in what is known as a “matrilineal” kinship system along with the Khasis, Mandi and a few smaller groups. May be or not that the system originated anywhere else but it is found here today.
            New voices ought to be heard that are reflected with the great variety of introduced cultural aspects and implications from a vast consonance. But they have forgotten their past origin by mollifying in some forbidden of new religious as well as cultural creed to control the converted Garos that is permission not be available to perform their original cults and deities’ etc. nevertheless, religion is a broad part of a cultural group but it is integrated both cognitively and material perfection of whole life that not be separable partly. I think it is the second best aspect to turn or divert a society or a group from their origin after technology. But technology is best for the physical or material change where religion may remain unchangeable. On the other hand, religious conversion incorporated in a best technology could resulting a drastically diversion of a group culture from its origin. As such the new generations carrying their ancestral characteristics with the flow of cross over genetically by affinity in the role of the exogamous Garo group that is not in culturally. Moreover, evangelizing power diverted their past heroes as the devils that after being converted these were not their sweet past for turn back to remember their origins. Not only the new generation but also the most adults have failed to answer these asking.
            Mandis are great travelers and their ancestors of course traveled too. In “the Garos” Major A Play fair found about the wrong or misinformation had deliberated by col. Dalton in his “Descriptive Ethnology of Bengal” stated on that “the Garos have no tradition of migration; they believe themselves to be auto ethnos and the only people with whom they claim alliance are the Buts and the English.” But the Garos have a very distinct story of their migration from Tibet and of various other stories about arrival in that plain, their wanderings, retracing by Himalayas and Brahmaputra valley. They were migrated randomly in all directions and various advantageous groups carried ideas from one place to another that caused the mix of the populations. Most probably many people died in earlier times fairly close to the place where they were born.
            Language is much better sensible than any other similar questions about the culture or the people. As a unified system language has a great organizational power for an entire culture or an entire population. We can think about in that respect of Bengali language. If we can be able to about the origin and the relationship among different languages then a much better idea will be regained about the spread of cultures as a whole.
            As we know about the Indo-European language family as a single common ancestral language where from descended English, German, France, Greek and Russian as well as Iranian and such South Asian languages Urdu, Hindi, and Bengali unfortunately we know much less about the origins of Tibeto-Burman. Indo-European splitter into major sub-groups that Germanic, Romance, Slavic and Indo-Iranian. Indo-Iranian branch known as Indo-Aryan that is spreader into India and it also be diversified. The divergence of languages from a single origin opens up our look to formulate a question such as “where did the Mandi language come from?” Here, we have to consider that the languages may be derived from a single origin that means not the same ancestral for the origin of a language and for the origin of a people. Though we can say that Bengali and English languages are same ancestral, it never means that they came from the same place or same religion.
            Many languages have been spoken by the hill people of Assam and Bangladesh as well as by the mountain people in Nepal, Burma, and Tibet in parts of Southern China. Tibetan and Burmese are the two most important languages of this group and so the language family has come to be known as Tibeto-Burman as a whole. Tibeto-Burman must have an ancestral place from where this language had been spreader over, diversified and subdivided. But we know about the language family very little.
            Mandi belongs to a particular sub-group of Tibeto-Burman. “Bodo” is the name of the sub-group that the languages are spoken by Mandi, Koach, Rabha, Kachari (or Boro), Chutia, Lalung and Tipura who were situated scattered up and down the Brahmaputra valley. The Bodes now live mixed among speakers of Indo-Aryan. But it must also be true that many of their descendants are found among the Garo population today. In the course of thousands years some of them have moved away from the area while others have moved in. ideas, local inventions i.e. indigenous knowledge’s of techniques have been carried from one place to another place by the such kind of internal and external movements.
            Another question has been arisen when I want to know about their origin. Many of them I want to know about their origin. Many of them like be known as the “Adibashi” or “Adibashi Mandi”. This term requires a great deal of inquiries or a deep insight.
            The Mandi have said that they are living here for the pre-historical age and so they have become to be known as the “Adibashis” (beginner inhabitants) their traditional and customary artifacts that they have some evident of their pre-historical lives reserved in the “Tribal Cultural Academy at Birisiri”. They were mongoloid typed cultivators. They cultivated Rice, betel-leaf bananas, coconuts with the stone-age production system of “Jhum” (Slash and burn). They had “Donga” or “Khonda” (one type of boat made with the stem of a big tree) and various practices were related with these performance. They were believed of various spirits and after death their eternal souls entered into the trees, hills and/or animals. This kind of animatisms fall them into the Hinduised belief of rebirth or re-animation.
            The Aryan from the North-west side entered into the Indian-sub continent in its different part such as Panjab, Koach-Bihar. Increasingly they took part into Assam where the Garos and Khasis were living. They conquered various “Adibashis” and incorporated them into the Hindu “Sanatan” religion. There are four main castes as such Brahman, Skhatriya, Baisya and Shudra. Most of the “Adibashis” were incorporated into the Shudras except the race of kings who were incorporated into Skhatriyas. The Aryan drove away the Garos and Khasis from the plains of Assam and they moved to the Hilly areas who were not converted to Hinduism. Only the Hinduised Garos were remained in plains of Assam. The small Hinduised Garos states were in the plains of Assam and the non-converted “Shangsharek” Garos states were in the Garo Hills. One of the Garo Rajahs (kings) in Garo Hills was Abongnoga as named. Brisiri-Durgapur or Sushong-Durgapur in Netrakona is known as a Garo state of Sushong Raja and Durgaraja. According to the records of the British Government in 12 century that Garo state was being handed over to a Hindu man named as Shomeshyar Pathak. Now they are converted to the Christianity by the evangelical Christian Missionaries. I have discussed above of the ideas of the present Garos with their origin as the “Adibashi” Garos.  Here, I have found the answer about the resemblance among the Khasis and the Garos and of course their language is the “Bodo”. Here, I assume and have a relationship in the context of their spoken language “Boko” that may be their earliest homeland were in the state of Sin-Kiung in the North-West of China Republic or in the region of Chinese state of the South-eastern China about 3 or 4 thousands years before i.e. 2000/2500 B.C. They might have to be migrated on the look-out their good luck.
            The evangelical Baptist Christian convictions as well as the Catholic Christian Missionaries have to be known about their origin with the help of various ethnologists. They assumed that the Garos were in a unenlightened situation with their “pagan” practices. Moreover, they were oppressed by the Aryan, the converted Hindu Garos, and by the Hindu Jamindars in the various periods. The non-converted or non-Hinduised Garos were neglected by the majority people to the various Criterions. When the Aryan conquered on them then most of the Garos were forced to welcome the Aryan and inter-group conflicts did them to fell in a great destruction. Such type of knowing about their origin and various assumptions paved the way for the colonial British Authority to take suitable strategies for domination as well as for the expansion of their society. The evangelicals took the strategies for enlightening the Garos with the religious socialization based education system strictly. After being successful conversion the Missionaries have faced various challenges from the Garos to meet their betterment of material aspiration by offering surety of employment for the educated one. But new question has been arisen that is “what will be the notions to recognize a Garo after being involved in an identity crisis of them?”

Early days of the Garos with political context:

The British rule divided its colonial inhabitants into various aspects of life, dominantly in political dividing on the early phase of extending its domination. The causes behind such political expansion for extending their societies found to control the colonial lives economically as well as religiously. Their main target for such vast activities was the ethnic and minority societies. They worked for the remote areas. They created conflicts with the Zamindars and/or Rajas to their inhabitants. The British Raj was cheap of the annexing of Garo Hills and a bloodless move had been created over various minority groups. As a result the subjugation had been completed of the hill areas of Assam, Meghalaya and with this the whole of eastern India came under British domination.
            The estates of different Bengali Zamindars under the weak Mughal regime the British extended their authority to the border of the hill areas in 1765 after accession of the Dewany of Bengal. The boundaries of these hill areas were not clearly defined. Many haats (market place) along foot-hills were established by the Zamindars and where the Garos were the sellers and purchasers. But mysteriously the Garos were divided into two sections as like  the Lamdani or the plain Garos (not free from paying tributes or taxes to the Zamindars) and the interior hill Garos (Achics) (free from any kind of outside influence or interference). The Zamindars and the hats were the disturbances for the peace of the plains. At this situation, the British offered a favorable political move to turn their expansionist attention towards Garo Hills. For that purpose the British authorities passed the “Regulation X of 1822” in the aim of separating the tributary villages and the independent interior Hills from the clutches of the Zamindars. After that regulation at the time of David Scott (special Commissioner in charge) the Zamindars were prohibited to collect revenues from the Garos. With such continuity the expansionist British rulers passed various Regulations and Act as like as the “Regulation I of 1876”, Regulation II of 1880. Before, the “Garo Hills Regulation of 1882” outsiders were forbidden to entry of Garo Hill areas without license and/or permission of the authority.
            Here is an idea about “British Zooloom” recalled by the elderly Garos where anyone can find out a small of bad politics for conversion. During the period of British rule, there was no road system to transport and communicate with the District which was the worst the name. Such type of negligence paved the way of practicing an inherent segregation policy which was advantageous for them strategically to evangelize and convert the Garos maintaining dependency on them. In the guises of peace keeping the great they provided two roads the only outlets towards Mymensingh and Goalpara plains. The District authorities constructed certain narrow-paths or hilly tracts only by clearing i.e. by a system of forced labor which was remained unchanged till recently as it a beggar system. Local politicians have the virtue of practicing such type of cruel and conspiratorial politics not to overcome their remoteness and natural bound ness. They take initiatives only for making own image or interest as an inherent strategy of consolatory steps to capture votes.
            In course of time the British authority invited the American Baptist Mission to join and strengthen such kind converting power by creating essential education among the Garos. The entire education grants handed over to the Mission and Schools. Churches were set up under the protection of the British rule. It created batches of faithful workers and training had been given for the propagation of their faith to evangelize and convert. Moreover, the Mission established various institutions containing their schools, church and medical facilities or means for training in hygiene and sanitation. All types of training provided for the converted Garo teachers trained in Mission Schools. There were three types of schools-
                 (i)      Tura Station Schools which trained the teacher-workers of the Mission for the village schools.
               (ii)      Village Schools which buildings were also used as village chapels.
             (iii)      The Sunday Schools which were attached to village churches or Christian ‘Sabhas’. To teach the scriptures these were organized by the American Baptist Mission.
According to Historians the Portuguese were the first to come to the western Indian sea-beach at Goa for the business purposes in 1510 A.D. and from there they reached at Chittagong in Bangladesh in 1517 A.D. for the same purposes. They were not involved in the propagation of Christianity but only they were the first to constitute their Christian Society. The Jesweet Missionaries started for the propagation of Catholic trend of Christianity at first at Chittagong of Bangladesh in the regime of Moughal in 1598 A.D. For such purposes they established church, schools, Orphanage and Medical, Hospital etc. Before permanent settlement of the Armenian Christian merchants the Dutch, the Spanish and the British merchants came to Dhaka first in 1608 A.D. aiming for business. According to historical data the Missionaries of Abyssinian community established a Roman Catholic Mission in Dhaka in 1616 A.D. The first Church was established in 1600 A.D. at Chandikon in Khulna district of Bangladesh. The oldest church at Tezgaon in Dhaka was established in 1677 A.D. where there were found to know about another Christian Churches in Dhaka at the times of 1640 A.D.
            The Baptist convention that was originated with the doctrine of Protestantism against the spiritual domination of the pope of Rome by the direction of a German Roman Catholic priest named Martin Luther. With such doctrine, Dr. William Keri and Doc. John Thomas founders of the ‘British Missionary Society’ came at first in 1793 A.D. to Calcutta in undivided Bengali for the propagation of Christianity. The missionary institution of the Anglican Convention the “Church Missionary Society” was established for the propagation of Christianity in 1805 A.D.
            The “British Baptist Missionary” was the first to introduce and circulate from the centre to periphery Christianity in the Garo region by constructing schools and convention (Churches). At firstly Rev. Ben from Dhaka and Rev. Aleson from Rongpur directed for that region which was handed over to the Australian Baptist Missionary in course of time. Rev. Beon started propagating Christianity at the Sushong Durgapur areas with the endless help of Raykumar and Gongacharan in about the ending of 19th century. The first Garo named Radhanath had been converted in that region. But with accordance of data Omed was the first Garo to be converted among the Garos of Assam in 1863 A.D. In 1881 A.D. the first Baptist convention (church) was established at the village named Banagram in the Durgapur area. Jaynath Chowdhury was founder of the Birisiri Missionary representative of the Australian Baptist Missionary 1889 A.D. The first attempts of the Missionaries were to literate the Garos and for that purpose they established Dharampur primary school at Purbadhala thana in 1880 A.D. As a representative of the Son of God, Jesus Christ, various personality who were cited as a witness of Jesus Christ and evangelization had been created with its prominent expectations to believe only on Jesus Christ.  
            The Missionaries tried their best and faced enormous types sorrows for converting the Garos by spreading education and various humanitarian services as with the strategies of religious propagation for realistic problem-shooting projects and planning. But they failed to do so at first. Because, nobody wants to shun own religion without being forced by internal and external aspiration for rescuing own self from extremely created unnatural miseries. The Missionaries consoled them that their present religious practices would not have any truth, one kind of stupidity which was not for the gratification of spiritual satisfaction and relinquishment. They created various worldly concerns to shut the Gaos for giving up their own religious faith and for having the awakening inspiration about the easiest deliverance way of release from sin. Such kind of engagement for evangelizing by the Missionaries brought the Garos in effecting a break with the “pagan” practices of the Garos. The British authority had the eagerness to maintain the traditional set up of Garo society against the land hungry mainstream people from the plains. But after being a problem within the relationships in a harmony of the Garos and the Bengali speaking people such type of annoying criticality of life made them in a negligence and unbearable with nothing essence to their traditional-cultural way of life. The spread of literacy brought about a cultural gap between the literate and illiterate. Conversion to Christianity necessitated the denial of most of the customs and traditions of the old society and swiped them for a new identity. Most of the material involvements at present may be seem as a physically change perfectly that to bear all pangs of transition but psychologically they are not be rescued from their belongings to the past habitual life maintaining orientations perfectly which are the presence of past as a “shaped culture” for the future. Here a new religious faith and wider views created certain new forces to cause further changes in society by organizing public opinion for opening English high schools, aspiring for modification of the educational system and by abolishing of Beggar. Such type of growing awareness and in a new religious bond made them is used as a group of segregation. This kind of isolation and carious dividing within the Garo community socially differentiated them in a suspicion, distrust, non unity dependency and as a converted group politically used by for various times when and/or where the evangelical Christianity are being into known as the great converting power whole over the world. It’s a great demanding asking that what sorts of diversion have been created by evangelizing processes to convert from their inherited origins (Depending on – ‘Bangladeshey Christia Mandalir Itihas’/ ‘The History of Christion’s Convention (Churches) in Bangladesh’ – Prof. Dillep Pandit).

North-Eastern Hills of South Asia:

Conversion to Christianity has been able to strike in the whole of south Asian hills of North – East India into its roots much deeper than in its plains. To the north of the Shillong plateau (the lowland to the south of the Himalayas and west of Myanmar that forms the Indian state of Meghalaya) lays the Indian state Assam. Enormous delta of the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers were formed by the Bengal that lies to the west and south of the Shilong plateau. These deltas have formed a frontier by the partition of British India into independent India and Pakistan in 1947. The southern edge of the Garo Hills lies to the plains (foot hill areas) of Bangladesh in its Administrative sector named Mymensingh. Birisiri Durgapur in Netrakona district of Bangladesh is the foothills and/or plain border areas to south of the Indian Meghalaya Hills which is situated to the South-East corner of the Mymensingh district. After being partitioned some farmers had to cross the border. They were walking from their homes to their fields where they lived with their brother and sister in adjacent villages found themselves citizens of different countries. Moreover, various transitional movements had been occurred across the border and gradually the Garo people found themselves in a differences as well as gathered enormous political experiences. They have found them in an Islamized country meeting the two civilizations of the Assames and Bengalis. On the other hand, belong to different people in diversified culture they were divided into a lot of separations as groups, “tribes” until the colonial period. The Garos of Birisiri had been introduced about Christianity from the British India spectacularly in the concentration of converted Christians. But the Garos found themselves as a tiny minority about less than one tenth of one percent population of Bangladesh as well as a religious minority. They speak “Bodo” languages of the Tibeto-Burman branch of Indo-Aryan. They are surrounded by a far larger Bengali presence that has a profound impact and influence upon the Garos of Bangladesh.
            A great variety of languages have been found in those areas. The Khasis speak a Mon-Khemer language, a Tibeto-Burman branch of Sino-Tibetan while the Hajong speak in Bengali. There are no records that have been found about any relationship with other languages. A good many Tibeto-Burman speakers live in the plains as well as in the Hills in Assam. Actually the “plains tribes” whom look like a bit south Asian and most of them speak or have a tradition of having spoken a Tibeto-Burman language.
            Tibeto-Burman languages belong to a distinct number of sub-groups. “Bodo” are the known subgroup that is spoken by the Garo, Kak-Borak and Kachari in northeast India, some close to the northern and eastern borders of Bangladesh. Rabha, Boro, Lalung and Chutiya are the several other “Bodo” languages which are known as hill languages. Koach languages are spoken by a few small groups just to the west of the Garo Hills, the place name, “Coach Bihar”. The Atong language is closely related to Koach. The Atongs consider themselves to be a sub-group of the Garos as it is spoken in the southeaster corner of the Garo Hills. In various parts of south Asia Christians are in a numerical majority. Increasingly the evangelical Christianity emancipated the whole area in a much more contact with the “tribal” people. If we figure for the tribal population only, having aside the non-tribal or the immigrant settlers, Christianizing will be much higher proportion where among some tribes almost 100%. Before the turn of the last century about all of the “tribal” of the north-east were “animists” (a spiritual beliefs    and customs represented as good or evil in rituals by worshipping deities and cults) except the Hinduised Ahoms of the Brahmaputra valley, the Meiteyis of Monipur, the Burmans of Tripura and the ‘Mahayana’ Buddhists of Arunachal. The Chakma group, the Rakhains are also found in Buddhists. 1951 census repost gave the total number of Buddhists in this area as around 20,000 on the Indian side. Though many groups have converted in a various portion to Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, but conversion to the Christianity has been found profoundly at present in that area, as may be seen from the following table (table 1).

Table: 1          Percentage of Christian to the total in 1971.
            In that area as a much diversified cultural heritage situated at the tri-junction of the south Asia, China-Tibet and Indo-China (or South-East Asia), Christianization has been found in a advantageous to its strategic significance. There were a link across the Himalayas and down towards the south of this region in earlier days. In ‘the place of Assam in the history and Civilization of India’, Sunity Kumar Chatterjee writes, “there is evidence that Assam formed a highway not only for trade but also for exchange of ideas between India and Burma and South-West China (Szechuan and Yunnan) from at least the closing century of the first millennium B.C.”.
            British administration ceased the area as a no man’s land to prohibit such movement and the British Government policy for practicing exclusion that made decision t locate the tribal areas ‘excluded’ or ‘partially excluded’ zones in a great strategic importance. They made this very sensitive to the situation as termed it as softest belly that fell them into a constant anxiety and political unrest. This is why; Christianity and Christian missions were in a critique for isolating the tribes as an instrumental to motivate themselves in the form of peace protectors amongst the tribal population. The Missionaries organized with an evangelizing aim of creating a pocket of permanent influence. They may be assisted directly to the rebels for such type of missionary activities in this area from the very beginning. But such type of accusations would not be remained unexamined because, conversion is the eternal rule for every religious practitioners that not only followed by the Christian Missionaries.

The Garos have an ethnic identity as a ethnic group which is being constructed in relation to their distinctive group traditions. But after conversion by the evangelic Christian missionary as an important agent of social change how their group traditions are going into be shaped

Ø      To explore out their practices of group traditions from all corner of their life style that they are performing.
Ø      To explore out the related agents with evangelic Christianity that affects group traditions.
Ø      Understand the reasons behind and the context of their aspiration for Christianity.
Ø      Their adaptive ness with others as created new situation in the society.
Ø      Analyses the patterns of interaction between the converted & the non converted Garos of that region.

SCOPE AND IMPORTANCE OF RESEARCH:                                                                             
Father Stephen Gomes CSC, in his book paharias: “a Glimpse of Tribal Life in Northwestern Bangladesh” (1988), makes an effort of their struggle to survive with a new identity. A constant pressure of dominant culture on them disintegrates and assimilates with larger groups around them. In the process, some of them have forgotten their own language and tradition. Acculturation has taken place at different levels. All of us need to be aware of the developments that adversely affect the peoples who are culturally different from the mainstream population.                                                       
Dr. Kibriaul Khaleque notes that there is little information available about ethnic groups. Serious anthropological research and state sponsorship is required to gather basic information bases about different peoples. The general condition of them such as their occupation and economy, political life, language, religion, acculturation and cultural conflicts are the scope of the information.
 Dr. Khaleque also has observed that the converted people to Christianity are often listed in the government official documents under the category “Christian”. On the other hand, those who use Bengali names are often grouped under the category “Hindu”. Thus, ethnic people are excluded from the groups where they belong. One can easily make such mistake if one does not have adequate knowledge about their ethnic religious and linguistic background.                                                                                                           
I think that how they fear a gradual and even rapid disappearance and diminishing of their traditional religion and culture.                                                                                   
Do the Garos of Bangladesh have the right to live their own way of life, practice their traditional activities?
 Is it possible to live in a mixed society- ethnic and non- ethnic and yet maintain one’s own culture and ethnic identity?                                                                                       
The policy makers, planners as well as government and donors take development programs. However, it is so much important to have the clear idea and deep knowledge about the ethnic groups, their traditions and life style that is different from the mainstream culture. Otherwise, the development programs may be harmful for the ethnic people.
 On the other hand, for equitable distribution of the benefits of development programs among all people as well as ethnic groups.
 For these purpose, it is important to know their living condition and to attain these Anthropologists need of involvement of the people in field area.

The Non-converted to the Converted Socio-Cultural Presence:

“Amra Kemon Koray Matritantra Dhoray Rakhbo? Aar Paray Na.” – Said by the Garo young man, Thengsu Sangma. Of course, they are in a socio-cultural reality and in a huge material concern that they are not in the position to remain their traditional practices unchanged or in the unmixed purity. The converted and non-converted both are in the position that they have been given a push in the trouble or anxiety of loosing these practices. They could not be able to escape from this traditionalism but not to belong in the “tribal” status. They were in the dilemmas that what they could do after had been found their neighbors were converted.
            But here is the question how much better they could do or can do to forget their practices perfectly. The educated portion who have a tradition of acquiring knowledge from the educational institutions at least for three generations have had done that much better than the recently converted or introduced with education. As because of education is the first target for converting the evangelizers set various steps to train them the Christian “modern” way of life. Already they have habituated with this life. But thinking so far, I can’t imagine the Garos without there are socio-culturally died and this is why they are the Garos. Here, I want to know their social practices i.e. popular custom, social system, their daily ways of life and their religious rituals related with enormous activities before their being converted to converted which also goes to the recent socio-cultural activities of the few non-converted Garos.
            The Garos have an adobe of diversified cultural activities. Their life is nothing without social duties. In the time of child birth, in childhood, at the stage of adultness, in the marriage ceremonies, after death, in agriculture, in religious rituals, everywhere they have a plenty of activities that is typed into the socio-cultural presentation.
            In childbirth: the ‘Shangsharek’ Garos perform a worship of the goddess named “Darichik” used with hens or eggs of the hens for expecting good of the new-born child. The worship of Darichik is comparable with the Hindus “Sasthi puja”. The parent of the child arrange for a feast with a plenty of alcoholic liquor on the purpose of the farewell of the midwife. The Garos called that alcoholic liquor drinking as the name of “Scugangi Ringaa”. The midwife as well as the helping hands (female), along with their relatives and neighbors are welcomed offering such entertainment and gifts according to their ability. The child is named in that ceremony.
In the Adolescence and Youth:
Boyhood and the Youth are the best time in their “tribal” life. They enjoy the most free and independent life leading at that period of time as well as having with the best opportunities to know about their own and their surroundings. The Garo boys and girls from the time of their boyhood, they are used to start acquiring knowledge about being self-sufficient side by side helping their parents in various familiar works of  “Shangsharek” life. The Garo boys at the age of seven or eight are used to start staying for night in the “Nokpanthey” reserved house for the unmarried boys with their friends where from they take primary education of playing various musical instruments in the leisure thime and take instructions about different traditional arts of weaving using bamboo and rattan from their elders. They weave “Kok-wouatta” (weaving baskets), “Doa Scittba’ (making splinter or bambolath as a fence, house roof, mat and coarse mat etc.) etc. The boy who have become expert in such doings and performances of playing musical instruments and singing and dancing have found himself in eulogized by all villagers that his future is very shining and bright. Those boys of that age involve also in organizing the preparations for all social ceremonies of the village. Again, all of them have the duties to perform group dances in the “Onegala” ceremony and in the other social ceremonies. As a result on that age the Garo boys take the opportunities to build up their individual status or personality as well as be exhibited with their constructive power. But the boy who fails to develop his talent at that age, he is used to known as a lazy (Hoira) or as a foolish (‘Jara Baouda) and which this social status will have to carry for his entire life. This affects his future life. Because, no unmarried girl wants to the utmost of her power to select such a ‘Jara Baouda’ boy as her life partner and/or make copulation with him.

In Marriage Ceremony:
The matrilineal Garos have an affinity system which tied with strongly by their kinship ties that the marriage system of the Garos is perfectly out caste typed for the purposes of creating broader relationship in group traditions. The Garos inherit their clan relationship from their mother side and in lineage system that directs their affinity. Their transmission inheriting is known as the “Mahary” (lineage inter-group system) from the mother side and that has a chief who control all such affined and inheritional discipline. The two young man and woman who belong to the same Mahary considered as brother and sister that is they are not in the position of being a couple (husband and wife) according to the customary rules of the Garos. The Garos abide by the rules and consider such type of affinal relationship as the incest and it is strongly restricted as the taboo. Traditionally the Garos have very different type customs of marriage but the general one is the “Dowdoka”.
            The man who serves his duties as a priest is called Kamal. Under the directions of that priesthood, the Garos maintain themselves to do a better performance. In the marriage ceremonies that are presided by the Kamal where he take a stout and strong cock in his hand and at first, he pates the bride on the back slightly by uttering mantra or spell and afterwards the same is done to the bridegroom. Hereafter the end of the spell uttering beheading of the cook is done by him. At the second time kamal pates the bridegroom on the back for the first time in the same way and here second next to the bride and third next for the second cock of about beheading.
            The two heads of the two cocks that have torn or incised from those necks and meet of the two cocks are not served for the bride and bridegroom to eat rather another stout and strong cock is cooked for them. At night the bride and bridegroom have to make a staying for night sharing same bed in a bed-room to make copulation. But the boy natural will be ashamed who wants to try escaping. He can’t do that because of being in a strict sentinel and if he can do it for only or twice a time, he will be found out and be caught to bring him to the bedroom and he can’t get rid of such relationship as husband and wife. But if he can be able to escape for more twice a time, then it will be appeared that he have not chosen her and he is not actually agreeable with that marriage. In these cases, the oldest persons of the village sit for a meeting to make a divorce system. After being accepted the divorce system, the girl is remained back to the former situation of virgin life.
            On the other hand, husband and wife both are incorporated into the two Maharyal authorities relatively according to the affinal relationship of them. This is why the two separate Maharies have the responsibilities to meet their problems: such as, after being death of the husband, to manage a bridegroom for the widow (widow remarriage) and/or for her daughter; if the wife is died then to manage a new bride for the widower or any other alternatives for him; to make a settlement of the quarrelsome husband and wife; to select suitable anyone from the husband’s Mahary as a new husand for continuing the surety to maintain the kinship ties intact, uninterrupted and non-accused between the two Maharies; to bring under control as is usual if the husband misuses wife’s property etc. are deeply deal by the two Maharies.
            Husband after death of his wife and wife after death of her husband both can’t remarry freely according to their own will only. Husband is bound to alive by his late wife’s Mahary system and vice versa. Husband has to remain as a subservient until he free from wife’s Mahary formally and until then he has to abide by that Maharial system. The husband and wife both who are interrelated to the two Maharies relatively with such relationship that they have to abide by and confined to responsibilities by such affinity which that is known as “Akhim” called by the Garos and the “Akhim” is one of the main sources of the Garo Culture.

Cultural Activities in Agriculture i.e. earning of livelihood:
Agricultural work is the earning of their livelihood and main habit of the Garos. The “Jhum” (Slash and burn cultivation system) cultivation is the main occupation of the Garos who live in the deep hilly areas. The “Jhum” cultivation has to take courage and new inspiration for the Garos and they concentrate this “Jhum” cultivation in different seasons of different time by performing very kinds of worship, deities and passages as well as various social festivals. The Garos are seem that these doings are very necessities and they maintain these formalities with appreciable gravity and pomp for the purposes enough production of crop on the Jhumland and for their familial happiness and prosperity as well as expectation for good fortune of all of the villagers. Here, I explain mainly a few of the rituals of the Garos.

(i) “Agalmakka” Or “Achiraka”:
            The first execution that they perform for all good of the ‘Jhum’ cultivation is called ‘Agalmakka’ or ‘Achiraka’. At the beginning of the year when they are preparing for sowing seeds before then it is been performed informally. This execution is not so expensive and very easy. Beginning of the ritual one piece of long and clean and green bamboo has been implanted in the certain place of the middle-field. Upward of the bamboo has having attractive artistic works and this is why the bamboo is ultimately peeled off and by arranging of these as like hair are hung onto the upwards of the bamboo. Afterward, some of boiled paddy some of rice, chicken curry, dry fish, crab are gathered on a plantain leaf, as well as with a little ‘Panchuoi Mad’ (one kind of local alcoholic liquor) in a separate pot has been leave behind on the bottom of the bamboo. Later on the ‘Agalmakka’ ritual in the next day small amount of composite of the seeds of the grain which will be cultivated, on the ‘Jhum’ field these are sprinkled on that specific land. Afterward, firing is started on the cleaned jungle and the seeds are sown in the next day. At this moment singing and dancing are performed. The relatives and the villagers are welcomed by chewing a betel-roll.

(ii) ‘Rongchu Galla’:
            Here, ‘Rongchu’ means flattened rice and ‘Galla’ means cast away or throw. ‘Rongchu Galla’ is a short and charming execution which is performed before at night before rice harvesting. It is started for the worship of the goddess of fortune of the ‘Jhum’ field by sacrificing ‘Chira’ (flattened rice) produced from new rice crop. By cleaning one corner of the ‘Jhum’ field a small amount of newly flattened rice on plantain leaf has been submitted to the goddess. A citron or a lemon cut into three pieces and these are mixed with boiled rice to lay these on the cleaned place as well as with a little sprinkled local alcoholic liquor on these. Here, also singing and dancing be performed. The oldest and honorable persons of the society, dances with the beats or rhythms of ‘Cram’ (one kind of drum) by catching in hand the ‘Millum’ (sword) and the ‘Spee’ (drum) for prosperity of the families and crop.

(iii) “Jamogappa-Ahaowa”:
This kind of execution is performed just before harvesting rice. The Garo boys make a cheerful shout expressing ‘Ahaowa’ sound and this is come to the word ‘Jamogappa’ uttering. This kind of sound is uttered individually and/or grouply at afternoon, at the dawn and in the time of capturing any husband for a girl. What they have been done before sowing in the ‘Achirakka’ ritual centering the bamboo, here also this kind of dedication has been represented after harvesting except sowing. They protect bamboo and harvest that they had sown surrounded by the bamboo by preserving in one corner of field and these are carried by the owner of the ‘Jhum’ field to the houses. At this moment the boys make the sound of ‘Ahaowa’. In this way the boys often make such sound before the next cultivation season and when it will be started then such sounding will be perfectly stopped.

(iv) ‘Onegala’:
            ‘Onegala’ is the last and the mega festival related with ‘Jhum’ cultivation of the Garos. It is performed with a great pomp often for a week after harvesting completed perfectly and arranges their houses, roads of the village nicely. It is started about second half of the October month or up to November month. They have to make a preparation for that ceremony. This is why, the date of the starting of this ceremony have been advertised by the ‘Aking Nokma (chief of the village or group). All of them make a good preparation by being new clothes and producing ‘Ponchoi Mad’. Because of this alcoholic liquor is extremely essential for that festival. Here, the ‘Aking Nokma’ is the highest producer of that liquor as well as with other families. In yard of every family arranges each of the crops with two divided pumpkin for the dedication of the gods and goddesses. For that purposes they burn incense to be perfumed with incense and light with lamp which are the starting of the ceremony and it is called by Garos as ‘Sasat Soa’ (burning incense). The first two days are named as accordingly ‘Churugal’ that in a short ‘Rugala’ and ‘Gakata’. The stating day of dancing and drinking is the ‘Rugala’. They distribute the meat of Pigs and the beef to the villagers and they eat belly fully with their guests diligently. Girls start dancing in Aking Nokma’s house and the male play for the musical instruments with discipline. Nokma sprinkles some rice and ‘Chu-Bichchi’ (purified liquor) rice bear on the dancing floor at the beginning of dancing which will continue for the whole night. In this it continuously is performed for the day and night. Some of the meaningful and important names of dances have been presented as follows:    
(i) Grongdaka (playing Horn), (ii) Dacru Sua (Struggle of Doves), (iii) Oping Ratta (Clearing weed), (iv) Agema Rua (Dancing of Agema), (v) Romay Ama (Dancing of young boys and girls by dressing old, wise), (vi) DamaJajka (Changing Drums), (vii) Ambretong Mujeca (Shaking of Hong-plum), (viii) Nomil Domisuala (Distributing wings of Hens by young woman), (ix) Nomil Panthey Sallidonga (Attracting of juvenile boys and girls each other), (x) Nomil Kasrang Donnoy Ringa (Smoking by a tender girl in a hide), (xi) Nomil Khambithua (Measuring own hight by a tender girl), (xii) Ambretong Kholla (Collecting Hong-plum fruits), (xiii) Nomil Jajong Nidowa (Observing the moon by tender girl), (xiv) Chu Khanna (Apply to drink rice liquor), (xv) Chamey Chung (Imitating the sweetheart), (xvi) Jik Seka (Stealing of wife), (xvii) Khil Okka (Collecting of cotton), (xviii) Nomil Bara Donnowa (Hiding Clothes by tender girl), (xix) Nomil Jajka (Shivering of young lady), (xx) Chumbil Dema (Cutting of Chumble tree).
            Not only dances are performed but also folk-songs are deliberated in the ‘Onegala’ festival. The folk-tale of owaljang and Serenging with their eternal lobe will be expressed at that time. not only in the ‘Onegala’ festival but also in other social and religious functions as such as ‘Ganna’, ‘Denbil Sia’, ‘Ashong Kushi tata’, ‘Jaokka’, Dak Pipa Amowa’, ‘Achuwa’, ‘Kritata’, ‘Mang Onna’, ‘Akritta’, ‘Mishchi’, ‘Sakchi’ etc. are organized with a very kinds of dancing and singing. The young boys and girls deserve their love in the ‘Onegala’ festival and they make a selection of their life-partners. Onegala is the ending ceremony of the Garo for the current year related festivity of ‘Jhum’ cultivation.

(v) Activities related with the Cremation of dead body:
                The ‘Shangsharek’ Garos burnt their dead bodies except some specific cases. If anybody died of black-fever, Small pox, Tuberculosis, Cholera, Leprosy then the dead body will be buried. They make a signified sound just after death of anybody by playing the Horn and the drum. It is the signal of anybody’s death. The don’t make a cremation of the dead until all of it’s relatives have reached within three days and they make strict guard till then. After being known the sad news, the relatives start just then to join the funeral without wasting any time being carried by rice, liquor, hens, pigs etc. along with then. The most relative one make a bathe of the dead body with purified rice bear or water. Many of them make a funeral rally with dead body from its own home to its parent’s house by playing different mourning musical instruments with a great grief. They also arrange an especial dinner expecting its eternal good for the next world. The latté’s parents have to make a sacrifice by slaughtering a bullock and they are be reattributed with the gift of a son’s wife and one piece of red clothe from their own ‘Mahary’. The Garos call these as a ‘Kadima’ and ‘Baramarang’. After being reached all it’s relatives they arrange the funeral pyre (cheetah) and fire the dead body. They take some of unburned bones and ashes into an earthen vessel to implant it into that funeral ground. They make a surrounding of fence made of bamboo course mat that is called by them as a ‘Delung’. They make an offering before the late person in the ‘Delung’ for one month and the ‘Delung’ will be burnt at time of ‘Onegala’ festival which is surrounded by a dancing group.
(vi) Activities related with Obseuises:
            Generally, it has been observed that the relatives of the late person do their obseuises within the first year of its death. Here too they make a preparation for an arrangement of dinner by helping in a different ways for the host family as a unite group with a great solidarity. They have to slaughter Hogs for that dinner which express their status and ability. If the host has a need of more boars, the neighbor and relative will help those gifting hogs. In the same way they relative will help those gifting hogs. In the same way they re-gifted to another host who helped them before. It’s a one kind of reciprocity system of helping each other. They have a dinner at that night which they are called as the ‘Mimang Dongnaba’ (settlement of the spirits). At that night the ‘Akhim’ responsibilities of the late also are discussed among the ‘Jikchal’ (wife’s side) and the ‘Manak’ (Mother’s side) of the departed soul. In the next day, the villagers and the guests coming from very distant place with various goods hops and rice bear make a nice sight of the group solidarity. After having a bellyful dinner, the neighbors have to go their won houses. But the relatives will have to stay at that night and enough rice bear have be drunk by them. A small type of feast will have to arrange to the next day for eating of the rest of the Ham brawn or park and the chicken curry. After have finished that execution they have to clean up all things.
            However, religious belief may have anything but the obseuises are performed still now into the Garo society less importantly. This was very need of their group inheritance. After have been converted to the Christianity they are now in a great destruction of their former traditional group culture. A greater portion of the Garos have done this more better to the ways of abolishing and acculturate with a new habitation and habituation of ‘modern’ life style of ‘personalizing’, ‘differentiation’, ‘non-integrity’ etc. Actually, they have a great tradition of hospitality socio-culturally. No one can back from them without any reception. But they are now more conscious that what are they doing and going to done. Because of already they have gathered many experiences by being cheated. A few of the Garos are involved in a business of the rice bear which are locally produced using their traditional method by them. A lot of ‘modern’ life aspects have been introduced to them with various evangelization processes. When they have to be known the local (mostly of Hindus and others) cheaters already have done them undone by misappropriation.
            Here about more than three hundred groups in the Indian subcontinent are not in the same position and these group-cultural societies have a diversified involvements that is the systematical interactions with the evangelical Christian Missionaries cause into different reactions resulting in syntheses and decomposition properties.  
            Here, the Garo culture is as if that they are not in the Garo culture but in the ‘shaped’ culture discoveries, basic human needs are materializing on the basis of new production relational emancipation of the basic ways in earning for a life. It is seen that the Garos are not only religiously converted but also culturally with the whole context of them. Actually their material means and social ways of life constitute their economic structure which is dependently related to their super-structural holistic views with all pervading inherit ional group culture. Their mental tendency to follow the new material concerns as well as with the rationality and their psychological aspirations. But the psychological aspirations which are modifying with different ideologies that enforce them of adhering to a particular doctrine what had have done with Protestantism in Europe. But here, the situation is extremely different. When Europe is gradually improvising their material concerns contemporaneously in the mean time, the Garos have to involve in life struggle for survival socially, politically, economically as well as with culturally. When identity is a problem for life dispatch and mental satisfaction then invocation for change would have come with the separation means of production from production relation. But religious conversion can’t do such perfectly that may be done by an efficient technology. Moreover, when they find them in a social reality that life leading is a rivalry resistance may come in a new form from various discrimination in daily life by grasping new identity adopting some means. But the Garos will remain in such technical hesitation until they have revealed into the view that religion is nothing but one kind of practicing of life to live and being into a growth of own as well as with others for life to live. Already the Garos were in that psychology but the mode of practices was in a different type which all of their traditional practices were related with agriculture as well as religious (‘Shangsharek’) beliefs in a different rated combination.
            The production system of the Garos which is their base of culture, society, group formation depends on the Garo economic structure perfectly.

The Garo Economic Structure:
The Garo culture can be divided into three steps, i.e. three stored Garo Culture as such
                                         (i)      Mental Resources (abstract fundamentals),
                                       (ii)      Social System or Social life (intermediately manifesting practices),
                                     (iii)      Economic Structure (the base of the Garo Culture).
All of these are deeply interrelated as whole of their group culture. Though economic structure control the rest parts of their culture but immaterial resources and thoughts give indulgence to form the material aspiration newly when social practices show its tendency to a new formation but social demands will be reached at the highest pick to do it with revolution. Otherwise, it will remain in a shaped formation of group culture. Then I can form newly an ‘Economical-Immaterial structure of a group culture.
            The primary needs for a life are foods, clothes, shelter, medicine, education, protection and sexuality. Here, the last three of these are the Economical-Immaterial typed mostly. On the other hand, sexuality is mostly inspirational one. Education and medicine are the first target of the Christian Missionaries especially. Education is the first purpose of the Evangelical one for conversion. With these the Garo economic structure can be divided into three steps-
                                         (i)      At first they have to manage or meet the most material demands in accordance with their mental expectation having essentialities on what to have.
                                       (ii)      They have to come in a great interaction and relationship for managing the decided essentials in a production system i.e. how they have.
                                     (iii)      In the processes that they have to maintain laws, rules, customs for owning, being protected, control power of that for which they all have done.

Their socio-cultural life has been started from the first. For walking along the changing mainstream society as a greater influential and the greatest influenced of external force of conversion bring them into a newly shaped habituation. From the side of earning their primary needs, almost they are in the same looking than their hundred years before life style.
The Garos are now involved in wet land cultivation system and a new production system from ‘Jhum’ cultivation. From hunter and gather society to pastorals to ‘Jhum’ cultivation and at last they are in adoption of wet land cultivation. In accordance with new production relation involve them to a new social formation from the ‘Jhum’ type. But here the plain land Garos are not so experienced in ‘Jhum’ type.
The Garos in a kin group of ‘Mahary’ are being owned their ‘Mahary’ land in their ‘Ajmali’ property called by ‘Akhing’ land. But in Bangladesh the Garos are in the recorded personal ownership of land as usual with the mainstream society’s laws of land right from the ‘Bengal Tenancy Act’. The matrilineal ownership of land has been loosening almost in a abolishing point. Here, the mainstream cheater people had been found the weakness of the Garos land ownership in matrilineal system. The Garos were getting into debt after borrowing of money from the cheater ‘Mahajan’ who were involved in ‘Mahajany’ business as a lender. When the Garos were in adverse situation of lacking money and deeply involved in debt but couldn’t pay off then the lender toke a bond with wrong information from the debtor. “Since you (debtor) can’t pay off me (lender), so you can give me your ‘Aadh Katha’ (1/2 Katha) land. O.K. you (lender) can take my (debtor) ‘Aat Katha’ (8 Katha) land.”- Such kind of conversation was within them. As a result, the lender has eight Katha land without being known the debtor and it would be recorded. This is how the most of the Garos have lost their enough land. At present many of them have no cultivable land. This is why; matrilineal ownership of land almost has been abolished tradition. Moreover, conversion to Christianity of the Garos by the Christian Missionaries wants to turn that matrilineal society to the mainstream patriarchal society. Because, the evangelizers believe that the matrilineal is the great weakness of the Garos in socially economically and culturally for their ‘utopian’ traditionalism.

The Social life of the Garos:
About seven thousand years before at the ‘new stone age’ of history, when the male were engaged with hunting gathering and fighting for protection and the female were involved in producing and reproducing mainly then, the Horticulture was invented by the women. It has come into agriculture, gradually. But they were belonging then in a matrilineal society even the women with their daughters cultivated their group land as the Garos did in their ‘Mahary’ land or ‘Akhing’ land. This matrilineal society constituted all the systems for a group culture, as the economic structure familial and social relationships and the whole social system in matrilineal. Production system and production relation related to ‘Jhum’ cultivation were also matrilineal type. Adoption of wet land cultivation into the plain land Garos (Lamdani) in a greater proportion than the Hill Garos have turned them in a tendency to be matrilineal to patriarchal as well as after being converted.
Very different cases make evidence for proclaiming that the husbands were oppressed and repressed in a matrilineal family. The widower father may be driven away by his daughters or by the relatives of the late wife. Just opposite of that kind of scenarios have to be found in the patriarchal Hinduized society that the women have no land right religiously. Moreover, when the Garo sons and daughters will be renowned as with their mother’s side and here, always it would be maintained in marriages, obseuises and other social rituals which are just opposite to the ‘Sanatan’ Hindus.
Here, the Christianity has come into the Garos in 1872 A.C. by being converted of an educated Garo Radhanath Bhowmik, Gradually, Christian Garos increases to 95% and only 5% of Bangladeshi Garos remained as non-converted which is called by an evangelizer as such.
                                         (i)      “The converted Garos are in the High-culture and the progressive section,
                                       (ii)      The non-converted Garos have remained in the ancient, matrilineal, conservative and retrogression section.
There is something valuable ethnocentrism for the Christian evangelizers to proclaim their own concepts as the best religion. But the Garos don’t want to known as a group of faster-mother without their cultural origin. Already they have been separated into different communities in one religion. They regret for their former religious group solidarity into inheritance for what they have given up to have new salvation and protection. The Garos are now quite matured that anyone can be converted religiously but for what?  Religion is not only for the doctrine of teleology but also for the practices of the life-invoked satisfaction of neatness in cultural regularity. Therefore, what was their world views and acceptance of outsiders when they were in the broader contact of culture and incorporation to the wider form?


As my budget and timeframe is limited and Birishiri- Durgapur is in my home district so, my involvements with these people are influenced. But I want to adopt the best methodology to collect information on regarding my qualitative fieldwork (In-depth, micro-level study) by perpetuating the idea and consciousness of the situation demand to use.  It is a matter of two hours to reach there. Moreover, there are my relatives and most of the Garos are living at Birishiri.                                                                                             
The plain land Garos living at the area of Birishiri- Durgapur only are my study population.                                                                                                                        
The study unit of my research is the household. The sample size may be 10 or more of it. I use the simple random sampling and purposive sampling techniques to select the size. As there is equal possibility to include as a representative of the study population (because almost all of them are converted) this is why, I use the randomization sampling. There are also some special categories to select as an informant. For this reason, purposive sampling technique is needed. I collect data from both of the primary and secondary sources.                                                                                                                 
I want to use the participant observation technique in role of participant as observer. As because of I have not enough time for complete participant. However, in this role, I may have limit access to some kinds of information so I must gear my responsibilities to the degree of secrecy of the information. I must be allowed by the people to obtain mine more as participant {“good friend”} than as an observer {“snooping stranger”}.
The modified participant observation described by Willems might be labeled “the techniques of modified participant observation”. Because  of being involved with the structure of generally less  complex family and other structural elements, such as social classes, political, economic and religious associations I have selected it. I have the consciousness to understand the interests and movements of mood of the group. I have a special pattern of friendship and competitive hospitality to make easy contacts with them in the sense of good rapport building. Key –Informant technique, case study method, collecting some of their life histories and participate all the possible activities with them make me to comprehensive their reality. I want to make a qualitative analysis of all my research experience.
Here, participant observation is most appropriate because the research problem is concerned with human meanings and interactions viewed from the insiders perspective. Moreover, I have to be able to gain access to an appropriate settings where the phenomenon of investigation is observable within an everyday life situation or settings. Direct observation is the main method and others as follows:  

¡       Casual conversations,
¡       In-depth ,
¡       Informal and unstructured interviews ,
¡       Formally structured interviews.   

I want to keep a diary or log of activities in the field and unique experiences. To ensure accuracy of recall and to develop systematic technique I want to keep written records or field notes or tape record and photography in the field.
Analysis begins when I collects information and considers it in terms of my study problem. It requires mine to code and level field notes-sorting, shifting, constructing and reconstructing these materials. Analytic strategies include looking for certain features, patterns, relationships, processes and sequences, comparing and contrasting, formulating types and classes.

Collection of life histories: I want to collect some extensive personal documents from a small number of persons with whom I have especially good rapport in key-informant interviewing. In most cases, life histories represent the exceptional rather than the representative or average persons in the community that are of great value for understanding particular life ways. I think confidently that their changed or shaped behaviors may be expressed from their life histories.

Key-informant interviewing: This methodology has been, of course, indispensable for recovering information about ways of living that have ceased to exist. Where the participant observation is impossible, the remaining source of available information was the recall of individuals who had been participants in the given culture. Individuals differ greatly in their knowledge as well as their capabilities for interpreting cultural information. Entering data into my notebooks may differ a good deal, depending on how I managed better the interview scene. I have had a key-informant and may I have another key-informant who occupies specialized positions in the local Garo society. It is also due to my purposive sampling technique will be used. Moreover, the key-informant interviewing is closely integrated with my participant observation that is used to have best advantage. (Anthropological Research. By-Pelto & Pelto ).

Focus Group Interviews: A focus group interview is an interview with a small group of people on a specific topic. I want to use the technique in some of the special cases when they are informant of shops or tea-Stoll or when they (six to eight people) are drinking their locally produced alcoholic “Madd” and gossiping with each other and many other cases. The participants tend to provide checks and balances on each other that weed out false or extreme views. It is highly enjoyable to participants.

Case Studies: Case analysis involves organizing the data by specific cases for in-depth study. Case can be individuals, institutions or groups. Here, the approach to quantitative analysis is a specific way of gathering comprehensive, systematic and in-depth information about each case of interest. Clinical records, statistical information about the person, background information, life history profiles and diaries can be include at the individual level case as a unique, holistic entity. The General Accounting Office (GAO, 1987) has published a major methodology manual, Case Study Evaluations.

Field work situation

As a researcher with anthropological aspects I have to communicate with the Garo people. They are my subject people from whom I have collected information being analyzed data. To do that I have to make face to face interaction which would not only a flow of information but also performance in the modified role of participant as observer presentation?
            First time I had been there in a winter season with my Key-informants Sagor, Ratan and Thengsu Sangma. From 2002 I am gathering information about them. Moreover, I had some ideas about them from my boyhood. But when I had finished my second trip it was a rainy season. Birisiri-Durgapur is a flood affected foot hill area. It had been raining continuously when I was there. I saw most of the places were under water and the Sumeshwari had blown with overflow. Shakair Embankment protects them from flooding. At this adverse situation I was there only for a week.
            From my first trip to second trip I see vast change comparatively. I think with evident that they are changing in their every coop of life style. But the communication system with the district city remains unchangeable and very dangerous for lives. But it has heart-thrilling natural scenarios that must be attracted by tourists or visitors. It has great possibilities of spreading tourism network. It has been fallen without any essence. A small bit of infrastructural development may be occurred. But the condition of remoteness has not been deprived.
            In that situation political leaders are involved only for delivering sweet wards and promises to have some claps and votes.
            To know them I have to make some perceptions about their reality i.e. ontology. And the theory of knowledge that is the processes of knowing is the epistemology. Moreover, I have some strategies and techniques all of which constitute my research methodology.
            I have to share experiences with my local consultants for making concepts and develop these. Because, these are great abstractions and which are culturally symbolized.
            The language of anthropology like that of every science consists mainly of concepts propositions and theories. Concepts are the basic elements – the building blocks of anthropological research. Familiar anthropological terms, such as family digging stick, peasant, hunter, slash-and burn agriculture and religion are all examples of concepts though these differ considerably in degree of abstraction”. “Elements of Research Methodology”- Pelto and Pelto
            Propositions and hypotheses have been created after observing the increasing growth of evangelism. The ratio of various non-governmental and governmental (G.O.s and NGOs) organizations and the churches produced services have not are small valued but converting ratio is very high. Very few (about 95%) are converted Garos) are remain non-converted Garos (about 5%).
            Above this situation the churches captures to control the Garos religious life and a great orientation of change in their whole life style being occurred.
            In my low degree of involvement with them that in the moderate type participation I have to maintain details field notes and a psychological loges of activities. I have carried a tape recorder and made some photographs. Rapport has been build up in a well manner. Private information has been treated with the respect of their owing secrecy. I have to record or do photographs with their permission. Many of them are interested of my carried tape recorder i.e. modern technology. I have recorded their voices and give them the opportunity listen to what I have recorded. They become very happy when they had heard their own voices. At first they look to me treating as stranger which is not any unnatural. But after a while they designated me and naturally expressed the interest to talk with me cordially. I think they are most hospitable and simply believe anybody. They simply shared with me their opinions, uprights, calmness, happiness and social that minor identities with national and mainstream culture created obligatory.
            When they (male, female and children) are gathering for a bread and tea into a tea-stall or grocery shop at morning and afternoon I would have the opportunity for free discussion with many of them together. Again when they are in a prayer or having alcoholic rice beer in a group I would have to make spontaneous gossiping. Here, I always maintain my headache for centering my discussion with subject relation. Moreover, I maintain a psychological and moderate design of key-topics for discussion with the order of importance of situation. Life histories have been recorded.
            Second time I were in the village of Baraipara about three kilometers distant from Uthrail and Kainnail my first staying house. I would have to make a daily walk on the Shakair Band crossing the extended flow (Dhala) of the Sumeshwari river by a small engine-boat i.e. Gudara. Spontaneously I talked with the passer-by Garo men and women and boys and girls. Many of them are gathered on the embankment for enjoying the afternoon to see the beautiful sun down as like a sea beach. Nobody rejects me without any word. Moreover I had made some organized special interviews with specific purposes of knowing.
            A few of them were not so interested to give me information. But I didn’t been upset. They wanted to know that what the benefits for such doings were. I replied nothing but for my own. They suggested me to go to the intellectuals and the dictionary (who knows himself as such) of the Garos. I didn’t do mind but took it easy. I think it’s a matter of disturbing by same as to me.
            After a brief discussion or ending of the dialogues or negotiation I would have to make an acknowledgment and thanked them. They also replied me to come here again. I have to maintain my personality as a researcher.
            To get a great variety of information I have to select a little bit aged group.  As because of religion is the matter of great abstractions and seriousness. Different age group, status group, economic-class group and gender group leased sampling has been used in my field work. The sample size is in about 30. Here, 20 of them are above 25, years to 85 years old and 10 of them are below 25 years to 6 years old. Teacher – 5, officer – 1, bishop – 3, Pastor – 3, Businessman – 2, Daily laborer – 10, and student – 6. Without daily laborers of about 10, rest of them are different middle class family or house-holders. 15 of them are women where 7 of them are below 25 years and 8 of them are about 25 years old. 10 of them are married and 5 of them are remained unmarried girls.
            Most of the ancient Garos don’t want to forget their indigenous knowledge of local technologies engaging in their life circle and diversified practices, on the other hand they specially into the new generational creed of lives have the attraction to the modern (to what are charismatic in activities) technology and practices. These are the newly involved ideas and the changed settlement of lives with various opportunities and services by the world-wide evangelists. Actually they are in the great dilemmas of accepting newly introduced reality to life style and not rejecting the former traditional practices. Above these propositions and causality inspired me to illuminate the concept of ‘shaped culture’.
            The most preliminary involvements of the evangelists to the societies are with education and training combined about centering in religion. As because of the schools, churches and welfare societies (NGOs) are produced and instructed with the assistance of the western expanding societies to profess in their religion. Conversion creates drastic changes into the converted educated and they are benefited by having various job opportunities. There are creating a cultural gap between the educated converted Garos and non-educated converted Garos. Moreover, Christianity has divided them into various religious practices. Social gap and status gap have been introduced. Their homogeneity of group inheritance troubled in destruction. All of these hypotheses will be interrelated with the concepts and theory of Anthropology.
            Their maintenance systems of ecology shape the ecology and their social structure. Their biological needs, capacities to maintain resources depend upon the ecology which characterized by the cultural products and practices.
            I have studied the Garos of Birisiri (Uthrail, Kainnal, Baraipara). Ecologically they are the plain Garos. Hill Garos live at Durgapur hill areas. Agricultural production is the base of their subsistence economy. They sell their products at Kaliganj Bazar and Utrail Bazar.
            Most of the churches are Baptists. The Historical Rani Kong Catholic church is the renowned one. Though there are different practice based churches. The purposes don’t differ a far from the evangelical one.

Some Theoretical Aspects
Contextualizing in Book reviewing

Ethnic groups and Evangelical Christianity:

According to Fredrik Barth the term ethnic group is generally understood in anthropological literature (of, e, g, Narroll 1964) to indicate them which:
¡        is largely biologically self-perpetuating
¡        shares fundamental cultural values, realized in obvert unity in cultural forms
¡        makes up a field of communication and interaction
¡        has a membership which identifies itself, and is identified by others, as constituting a category distinguishable from other categories of same order.

I assume that the Garos have the identity and cultural boundaries maintaining by the actors themselves as an ethnic group as they are ecologically adaptive. They maintain their boundary, which imply their isolation by their racial difference, cultural difference, social separation and language barriers, spontaneous and organized enmity. There are many other factors to explain cultural diversity that the group is developing its cultural and social form in relative their traditions, mainly in response through a history of adaptation by invention and selective borrowing. Their traditions have produced the history of a world of separate peoples in a culture of an organized society. They may have the ideal type the traditional proposition that a race = a culture = a language and that a society = a unite which rejects or discriminates against others (Fredrik Barth).
The Christian missionaries all over the world have adopted its evangelical inventories to diffuse their ideal modification through traditional distinctiveness. An ethnic group must depend on the “culture-area tradition” on the “culture-bearing aspect” of them. They are living in a common culture. Moreover, the external institutionalized exploiting of opportunities creates new values to adapt with these movements. When they find them in a new innovation then the question of adaptation has arisen. In this regard acculturation processes has been going on in the context of dynamism of these groups. Revitalization movements may be occurring in this situation offering to dominate their ideologies in relation to the world-Rejecting Religions. It is a matter of their choices in relation to their local ecological adjustment. On the other hand, planned development programs that consist of domination and expansion of the western societies have adopted commercialization into the concern of modern world reality.
Concentrating on the organizational type of the ethnic group that effective religious change should take place in their traditions of the organizational form. Transformation of the agriculture based production system of subsistence economy to market economy may have caused by ideological change of religion. Many other effects on their kinship based authority over the society and individual like family, marriage, sex as well as their traditional political practices show their changing identity. It can be called by “as a shaped culture”.
In a brief case I want to use and relate the following major or special aspects of traditions performing as a group that to find out the changed, unchanged and mixed performances of group traditions related with converting processes to a religion by the evangelical Christian missionary that religious group.

Text Box: Aspects of group traditions related with religion: Symbolized Behavior

Text Box: Organizations and institutions in
 Matrilineal         Changing to the Patriarchal
Text Box: Religious Change (conversion)  

Text Box: New Material Concern with New Philosophy            Production system—economy      subsistence       tools and technology
             (Local)                                          Agriculture                    Profit maximizing
Agricultural labor       occupations       the market         
Kinship system-----clan/authority/chief/raja        Church-state-Father
Text Box: Family       marriage      sex        Religion        Control

Political practices---friendship       patron-client relationship   conflicts 
             (Boundarial)                              Emerging local leadership, social control   
Text Box: Traditions, cult-deities, symbols, language, clothing,dances, 
Myths and folk tales, special celebration-social morality,      
Cultural practices----                  
Text Box: (Meaningful 
Text Box: Birth, puberty (sexual aturity), 
Marriage, parenthood, death, 
Educating the children with training. 




Fig: Changing Interactionism of Group Culture

Lévi-Strauss assumptions about binary opposition to myths and folk tales that one can be converted into another through a series of a simple operation:       
Þ    Converting the positive element of a myth into its negative.
Þ    Reversing the order of the elements.
Þ    Replacing a male hero with a female hero.
Þ    Preserving or repeating certain key elements.

Religion is a cultural universal because it has so many causes, effects and meaning for the people who take part in it. I want to look at the cognitive, emotional, psychological and social dimensions of religion. Now I examine its evolutionary, ecological and economic context. Religions forms do not vary randomly from society to society. Religion is a part of culture and cultural differences show up systematically in religion.
¡        Correlations between religion and cultural type.
¡        State religions are unlike those of tribes.
¡        Religious taboos and cultural ecology (the adaptive significance).

“Culture” and “society”                                                   

These concepts are used to express “complex” societies as to the meaning of holism and integration. They celebrate connection of inequality institutions adaptive ness of custom for a place and a lifestyle, sharing of premises, values and experiences within a community. This connectedness is conveyed in the language of structuralism. Its emphasis on “abstract able logical patterns embedded in superficially diverse forms”----the forms which are imported to capture the true, these are supposed abstractions or not observable (Ethnos, vol, 54, 1989).
However, here the “culture” is used as sum of observable patterns and to the ideational bases of such patterning. “Society” and “culture”   should be explored in the extent and kinds of connections, which obtain in the domain of culture under various conditions of society (“The Analysis of Culture in Complex Societies”---by Fredrik Barth). In the words of Clifford & Marcus to show that culture in its totality into the “contested” pot, because it also received in the assumptions of holism and essentialism within the closed world of distinctive cultures.
Culture may be the results of particular social processes and neither functionally nor structurally is essential to culture symbolic and expressive operations. People’s reality is culturally constructed which is held in a place mutual consent that is material cause embedded in collective representation: in language, categories, symbols, rituals, institutions.
In the “Garo Shangsharism” for achieving their group traditions that is consisted of their philosophy and myth, externalized/internalized in moral and metaphysical learning, ritual, worship, legend, art, architecture, theatre, dance, music, dress, shadow puberty, cults and deities etc. The mixture of new and old suppresses the signs of incoherence and multi-culturalism that is inessential aspects of modernization. The GARO group traditions that are their local culture show it to be an artifact of life in a small scale, socially dens context.
The Garo Shangsharism affected by evangelical Christianity to the converted GARO Christians related to their philosophy and myth in relation with it what’s they were to be explained.
Providing food, material goods and income that is the philosophy of GARO Shangsharism desire for material world for benefits, feed and clothe themselves, consumer goods, educating children celebrations are changed. Available technology, labor, exchange values choices have deep and ramifying consequences. A “deep structure” of society generated by these activities is the “central place” role of the main church.
Western-inspired modernism has been taken place by politically activating organizations, educational system, modern administrations and bureaucrats, modern school system, massive flow of information and knowledge transmitted by modern media and children are systematically trained. 
Living in a new patterned or shaped traditions, a new external  world brought a new awareness and a wind of change, equality of mankind go through individualization and institutionalization. By questioning the nature of coherence their changeable cultural traditional reality will be allocated. 

            S.F. Nadel had used the following concepts with these changing interrelation-al directories in “Nupe Religion” 1954.

Text Box: ElementsText Box: Congregation-in worship
Community of Believers
Ritual actions (as symbols)
Ritual actions (as stimulation)

Text Box: DoctrineText Box: Religious Experience Text Box: Economic EthicsText Box: Support of Social StructureText Box: Explanation of the UniverseText Box: Competences                                   

            Here, I can also relate the Garos; the ‘Shangsharek’ community believes in ‘Shangsharism’ and makes their congregational worship with support of their social structure directly. Their ‘Shangsharek’ religion has become into a Garo culture by sharing fundamental cultural values and matrilineal kinship ties with specific type of communication and interaction within specifically identified boundary in explanation of the universe and economic ethics that supporting their matrilineal social structure and are gathering religious are experience which directly be expressed in their stimulatingly ritual actions. Ritual actions (as stimulation) also construct the explanation of the universe with various doctrinal ideologies using religious experience and symbolic ritual actions denote the economic ethics which also depend upon the doctrine that the ‘Shangsharek’ Garos executions are agriculture based. New doctrinal ideology have created new religious experience in stimulate, ‘shaped’ ritual actions of in context of the explanation of the universe in Christian philosophy and mostly in evangelic Christianity. Worship based congregation and the ‘Shangsharek’ Garos have constructed their social structure with the values of strong unity as the Garo society constituting by the distinguishable (biologically and culturally by own and/or others) kinship ties in matrilineal. But Christian doctrines and evangelic Christianity with the ideology of modernization and supremacy of ‘modern’ life style affected them to form the contemporary identity of Christian Garo into different denominational religious groups which are more individualistic and cohesions less. The Christian Garos in Birisiri have rejected their ‘strange’ gods and male heroes/female heroes by converting them into negative super power from the positive supernatural power.
            Here, we use to ‘culture’ as a sum total of observable patterns and to the ideational bases of such patterning. On the one hand, culture should he sort out in its overwhelming detail and ethnographer should demonstrate that is commanded by her; on the other hand ideal sight is the way to abstract.
            In building theory about the words like ‘culture’ and ‘society’ we must start in the simple mind of positive, falsifiable minded about the phenomena we observe.
            Their own act of assuming can reasonably show a particular group which is the reflection of their membership of it. On the other hand, disconnected diversity of people’s activities and the mixture of new and old suppress the signs of incoherence and multiculturalism.
            The anthropologists have referred that ‘culture’ which is now in the very central understanding of humanity and the worlds humans inhabit. Fredrick Barth used the idea that we observe all the patterns in cultural constructs are related to culture’s symbolic and expressive functions. Culture also is represented as the independent variable and prime mover as in Birisiri and whole over the world of evangelical Christianity with modernization processes. The ‘sense of fitness’ in functionalism of Malinowski can be used for the Garo local culture, show it to be an artifact of life in a small scale, socially dense context.
            “To make such judgments, we do not need to hold the ultimate and comprehensive keys to natural events. We only need to step gingerly and use the most instructive cases of discrepancy to discover, not what is really real, but what the processes are whereby meaning is constructed by others in their engagement with the world. This is all the more possible since the reorientation that I suggest also liberates us on another count: it no longer requires of us that we ascertain in one fall swoop the essential structure of that which we are studying- whether cultures, societies, or culture-in-nature. We will be working to identity the processes whereby people engage the world and each other; the understandings and meanings they thereby construct; and the connections between how they go about it and the shapes of the cognized worlds that are thus generated”. (Fredrik Barth, 1994, 355).
            Fredrik Barth also suggests three modifications to the traditional concept of culture.
            “I would formulate three recent and particularly fruitful modifications of the more traditional concept of culture, which enhance its naturalism and should have consequences for our method. I choose to formulate them as assertions, for greater clarity:
                                        (i)      All concepts are embedded in practice; and so their definition and thrust can only be determined in the context of that practice.
                                      (ii)      As views are singular and positioned; and anthropological accounts and generalizations about a cultural tradition will represent the anthropologist’s own construction, based on her judgments and analysis.
                                    (iii)      All meanings remain contestable, within as well as between social circles and cultural traditions”. (Fredrik Bath, 1994a: 356).

Considering the culture contact and change Fredrik Barth has stated different aspects that I can depend upon.
            “This is a very widespread process under present conditions as dependence on the products and institutions of industrial societies spread in all parts of the world. The important thing to recognize is that a drastic reduction of cultural differences between ethnic groups does not correlate in any simple way with a reduction in the organizational relevance of ethnic identities, or a breakdown in boundary maintaining processes. This is demonstrated in much of the case material.
            We can best analyze the interconnection by looking at the agents of change: what strategies are open and attractive to them, and what are the organizational implications of different choices on their part? The agents in this case are the persons normally referred to some what ethno-centrically as the new elites: the persons in the less industrialized groups with greater contact and more dependence on the goods and organizations of industrialized societies. In their pursuit of participation in wider social systems to obtain new forms of value they can choose between the following basic strategies: (i) they may attempt to pass and become incorporated in the pre-established industrial society and cultural group; (ii) they may accept a ‘minority’ status, accommodate to and seed to reduce their minority disabilities by encapsulating all cultural differentiae in sectors of non-articulation, while participating in the larger system of the industrialized group in the other sectors of activity; (iii) they may choose to emphasize ethnic identity, using it to develop new positions and patterns to organize activities in those sectors formerly not found in their society, or inadequately developed for the new purposes.
            …………………, the innovators may choose to emphasize one level of identity among the several provided by the traditional social organization. Tribe, caste, language group, region or state all have features that make them a potentially adequate primary ethnic identity for group reference, and the outcome will depend on the readiness with which others can be led to embrace these identities and the cold tactical facts.
            ………………… the mode of organization of the ethnic group varies, as does the inter-ethnic articulation that is sought. The fact that contemporary forms are prominently political does not made them any less ethnic in character.
..……………….. The processes whereby ethnic units maintain themselves are thus clearly affected, but not fundamentally changed, by the variable of regional security.” (Fredrik Barth, 1969; 32-37).
            Here, I can also make reconsideration about Boundaries in culture and its constituents that – “Different cultural components have different boundaries. First, there are those between the internal domains of a given socio cultural systems, religious, political, inter-personal (gift giving) Culminating in the highly contextual usages of individual creative writers. Then there are the local boundaries between adjacent social groups and individuals boundaries that differ for different kinds of social action. Thirdly, there are the hierarchical boundaries of estate or class. The nature of these boundaries will vary with the type of social system”, the simpler societies are relatively undifferentiated not only hierarchically but with regard to domain, the religious merging with the political.
            In European gift-giving red roses usually stand for sexual love; in the context of Christianity for the virgin for the love of Christ as well as for his martyrdom; in that of politics, red is often the blood of socialist martyrs. Interpersonal, religious and political contexts define the usage quite differently indeed in contradictory fashion.” (Jack Goody, 1990; 255-256).
            Here, I want to look into a different sight by in that way –“………………the role played by Christianity as a catalytic agents is perhaps to be viewed from a closer angle.
            Whether or not the church leaders are directly associated with the rebellion, the fact must be noted as stated earlier that it is the advent of Christianity that has unified so many separate tribes and given them the concept of modern nationalism, if not through the teaching of the Gospel then certainly by exposing them to the newer opportunities”. (Ferdaus A. Quarishi. 1987; 55)

Some other ideas and inspiring clues as follows:
“It is another world, another people, and other custom……….its roads are frightful like the path leading to the nook of Death; fatal of life its expanse like the un-peopled city of destruction. The great forests that clothe its hills are full of violence like the hearts of the ignorant.” Mullah Darvish. Associated of Mir Jumla, the Mughal general during invasion of Assam in 1662.
            ‘The serving of Christianity must be the chief interest of such as shall make any attempt at foreign discovery.’ – Edward VI to navigators.
            ‘We are in possession of a revealed religion – which we are ……,….exclusively in possession of a revealed religion ………and that the profession of that religion can alone confer immortality, and best confer present happiness’. – Edinburgh Review, April 1808
            ‘………Advance of the church of Christ had figured almost as prominently as the extension of the territories of their respective rulers. ……….Columbus was as much a pioneer for the church as he was for the Spanish king’. – J.N. Ogilvie. Our Empire’s Debt to Missions (1923).
            ‘The son of God has gone forth in the chariot of the Gospel; and his career of Conquest shall continue, until all nations, peoples and languages, shall be made to how before him’. – Indicophilus Essay on the propagation of Christianity in India (1812)

Habitual way of life and Group Boundaries:
The ‘Shangsharek’, Garos who had a great variety of traditional practices according to their group maintenance. Since they have accepted different virtues of the ‘modern’ world after being converted to the Christianity but not in the perfect transformation so, their habitual ways of life at present in a mixed or ‘shaped’ type.

Affinities:  The Garos are divided into various sub-groups but they seem to be indicated by the remarkable similarity which exists in the languages of a number of the groups. Although the Garos different other groups are scattered over north-eastern Bengal and the valley of the Brahmaputra but over Shomeshwari valley through in Birishiri-Durgapur the Garos can easily be traced by their linguistic affinity of Bodo that belong to the Tibeto-Burman family. All of them can speak in Bengali a much better in little different pronunciation. Their customary exogamous marriage still exists among the Garos. Sometimes the educated portion of the Garos wants to break down that group boundary. Their religious practices of their old religion can be traced them into different sub-groups as the Brake Garos are very fond of their worship of tree as named ‘Chiga Midly’. Moreover they are now differentiated into various Christian denominations. Local influences world suffice to cause changes in their way of life that gradually have in a loosing touch for owing the Christian barrier.

Dress: The older Garo dress is very hard to find. ‘Gando’ is the strip of blue cotton cloth interwoven with lines of red which is six inches wide and about six or seven feet long. It was used by the Garo man as the principal garment. They used to wear a ‘pagri’ on their head for important occasions. Man’s attire had been completed with a cotton cloth or a blanket over his shoulders in the cold and extra covering was not used in the hot. The Garo woman dress consists of a piece of cloth eighteen inches long and just broad enough to meet her waist in the form of a petticoat known as riking which is universal except among the Christianized Garos and the inhabitants of the plains. They used to wear a shawl of blue and white cotton on their shoulders and in the hot weather their upper part of the body were remained as the men usually as innocent of covering. Women wore the ordinary garment for dancing and on gala occasions which was known as ‘marong-jasku’. After a successful raid in the old head-hinting days a dance was in performance wearing a garment called ‘pandra’. Now a days wearing of them have been modified but having with a little bit older impression which make them remembrance of their former Garos or ancestors Garos dressing style. They are more much similar in looking with Bengali people according to their dressing and their hair style ‘Gena’ a short covering of garment was used by the women which is not be found to use at present.

Tattooing: Though tattooing was never be seen among the Hill Garos, but it was occasionally practiced by the plains Garos of the Mymensing and Netrakona district. Now it is not be found in Birishiri-Durgapur among the Garos.

Ornament: The ‘Senki’, a kind of waistband worn by the women. Brass and bronze bracelets are worn by men and women and for the dance they also wear the brow-bands. ‘Pilni’ or Salchak-moldong’ a curious head ornament used in the dance. Man and women wore the small ring in the upper part of the ear attached with a small semicircular piece of metal named ‘natapsi’. Nowadays they have nothing to wear but they can wear which are brought into contact within the market and the gold-smith. Gold smith Sagor said, “The Garos can make using all that ornaments which I prepare for their choices of interest”.

Weapons: Swords (about 3 to 4 ft. in length and about 2 ins. Broad a straight blade) and spears are the principal weapons of the Garos. The swords are very quaintly designed with a blunt, arrow-shaped point, and from hill to point are made of one piece of iron. At each end of the crossbar is attached a bunch of cow’s-tail hair or what is more greatly prized, part of a ‘yak’s’ tail (Hog’s tail). “The sword is always carried naked, and is never placed in a sheath or fastened to the body. It is a most useful possession to the Garo on the march, for with it he can clear jungle which bars his way, spit firewood and cut up his food, besides using it for the main purpose of defense (‘The Garos’ by Major A. Play fair, 1975, 31-32).
Spears of the Garos are used in the big drives for game and numbers of pig are slaughtered with these weapons, Bengali traders brought to them foreign made iron head of the spears. Bows and arrows which are vary in shape according to locality and the source of obtaining. ‘Sepi’ (made of wood) and ‘danil’ (made of bearskin) are the two kinds of shield which the Garos are posed. These weapons are hard to be sun at present with their diminishing traditional practices.

Occupation: The Garos are occupationally agriculturist who is devoted for cultivating the soil from the beginning to the end of their life’s work. “some Garos in the central Someshwari valley carry on a petty trade in the white beads, of which all Garos are so fond, and in the ‘daos’, swords and cloths which they purchase from the Megams in the khasi Hills. In the lower reaches of the someswari, a certain amount of trade is done in timber, which is floated down the river to Baghmara and there sold to purchasers from the Mymensing and Netrakona district” (The Garos by Major A Play fair; 33). There are a few blacksmiths Garos engaged in a little ironwork. Weaving is another only forms of industry in which they manufacture a little more than supply the wants of their household and to meet their demands of local market. Every housewife has a rough loom. For fishing some of them neat the fishing traps net. In Uthrail-Birisiri Market some of them have tea-stall, grocery shop Book-store, clothe-store etc. the landless poor Garos earn their lives as day-laborer, at the beginning of the day they make a breakfast with a cup of tea and bread usually and gather in distinctive places. Some of the Garos have a small natural business of rice bear liquor with the outsiders beyond their group at a price of 25 to 20 taka per kg.

Houses: Garo Houses are always building on piles and if possible on a step incline. The plain Garos in Birisiri-Durgapur mainly uses earthly made homestead in a short gight about 1.5 to 3 ft. from the ground land. The walls are made of the bamboo-cane matting which is plastered with mud and the roof is a substantial covering of thatching grass. Many of them have houses which are earthly made walls and the roofs of thatching grass or tin and wood build. Now they have nothing to maintain old style of house building but some little bit characteristics have also be remained that the houses are very long and according to their length rather narrow. They have some bachelor house which is to be found in every village that I have mentioned the ‘nokpante’ house. It is a custom to celebrate the building of a new house by a sacrifice. But these celebrations are not following the older customs perfectly. They can do it now with a simple arrangement of offering for chewing battle roll.

Villages: Three villages I have studied at Birisiri that are Uthrail, Kainnail and Baraipara which the Garos as well as the mainstream peoples have constructed theirs in valleys of the Someshwari. Actually the Garos attach great importance to pure water, and it is quite the exception for them to live at any distance from a good stream. These villages are on flat ground. All the inhabitants conduct commonly in these villages of many of their religious ceremonies including even the cremation of the dead. There are four churches which one of these is for the seventh day Advantest’s, one for the Baptists and two of these are for the Evangelicals. Here, the houses appear to be crowded together and are, infect, very close to one another. In front of each house will probably be seen the wife of the owner busily engaged in husking rice for daily meals or weaving cloth and the husband engaged in weaving fishing nets or gossiping together many of men and women with drinking rice bear. Through drinking liquor is forbidden according to the evangelicals as well as in respect of Christianity. Here, the Missionaries have hound that the Hindus maintain their religious taboo of not eating beef and the Muslims deny Ham brown and alcoholic liquor as well as to the all religions. Because of that rule they also prohibited drinking alcoholic liquor to the g as a parallel rule in respect of the surrounding religions. On the other hand, “plenty of children play about, and amongst the domestic animals around and under the houses is always that useful scavenger the pig (‘yak’). No attempt is made to cultivate a patch of land within a village for fruit trees or vegetables, as is the custom in the plains; probably for the reason that the pigs and fowls would soon destroy whatever was planted” (The g – Major A. Playfair). There are small huts as such name of ‘Uthrail – Birisiri Bazar’ and the ‘Kaliganga Bazar’ with their different size and appearance. In former days the Garos were of villages constituted with considerable size of about two or three hundred houses necessarily liable to guard from attack by a neighboring village against the danger by sowing the approaches with sharp-pointed bamboo stakes called ‘wamisi’ or ‘Panjis’. Nowadays the necessity no longer exists, when they are in a harmony with all inhabitants of the villages which resulting them in being broken up into small hamlets or group situating as like as many bunches each of which in the name of its ‘Nokma’ or headman.
            The Garos use a very amount of different furniture and household utensils. A rough seat hewn out of a single piece of wood called ‘pira’ or ‘chawki’ and a cane-bottomed chair or a wood-made chair, or a long bench may be occasionally offered to a guest. Tables, bundles, pots or baskets are used. They consist mainly of cooking-pots of aluminum or silver on earthenware, larger vessels for brewing liquor and the pestle and mortar with which paddy is husked or rice cleaned for eating. They use sieves, spoons, Jags or mugs as the drinking vessels, silver and steel plates and various other materials in the times. Umbrellas are also be in daily used but it also be seen commonly that a Garo sheltering himself from the rain under a large arum-leaf. I have found in Baripara village where a marriage ceremony of a Hindu man was going on at night and they were invited to take a look on the marriage procession when it was raining and the Garo boys and girls were using the arum-leaves.
            The Garos had a several uses of their musical instruments of drums, bamboo and horn wind instruments and metal gongs and cymbals. These are not be used in enough. I have found they only sing songs on their prayers without any musical instruments praising jesus Christ or Mother Moriom or they can make use of harmonium, micro-cymbals a ‘Khowl’ (drum). Several varieties of drums were with special uses which some of these were assigned for playing on solemn occasions, such as funerals and some annual ceremonies of a religious nature of the ‘Shangsharek’ Garos. They used most commonly of the ‘dama’, ‘kram’, ‘Nadik’, nagra’, ‘adil’, otekra’ ‘singa’ etc. For the first made of any drums, special sacrifices were very necessary which were used in order to assemble the people.

Fishing: The Garo villages are nearly situated on the banks of or close to rivers (as my study people are nearly situated on banks of the Someswari River) that follows the important form of their item of diet and therefore, the Garos are involved in fishing operations. Most fish are caught when the floods or rainy season (as I was there in that time seeing plenty of fish being caught by the Garos) follow them by using various capturing methods of fishing weir or a ‘nagil’, largest bamboo cage 6ft. or 7ft. in length is named the ‘chekwe’ and smaller trop called ‘asol’ when the current is not very swift on the lower reaches of the Someswari river, nets are used as same as in the plains. The Garos have a custom of poisoning rivers by using various plants cut into pieces, roots and barks for stupefying the fish. These fish can be collected easily when these are floating on the surface of the water. Moreover, they are very expert in spearing fish. Nowadays all of these practices have fall into crisis of lacking enough fish dominated by current (polestar) nets which are used by the Bengali fish traders.

Food, drink, games and dancing: The Garos eat three times a day and almost any kind of animal food will be eaten by them almost nothing is forbidden to eat for them. Generally the Garos don’t drink milk as regarded to them as excrement. But after being Christian they have abandoned this tradition and being into rejection of drinking their tradition and being into rejection of drinking their traditional rice bear as a parallel taboo of the Muslims and rejecting of beef eating by Hindus in accordance with the evangelic Christianity. The Garos eat goats, pigs (‘Yaks’), fowls, ducks, beef, some kinds of snakes, and lizards, flying white ants and ‘nakam’ or dried fish, dried venison, rice, millet, maize, job’s tears and to the Hill Garos who eat dogs, cats etc. actually their habitat ional food chain is very lengthy and spread. They also eat edible creepers and roots, bamboo shoots, chilies, except oil and fat and before being eaten, they make a offering in sacrifice which now they make in a different way of prayer before being eaten anything according to the Christianity with silently or in a gesture or with a common expression. There is a custom ‘chuchua’ of the Garo women to wean their children by feeding them with chewed food from their own mouths that is not followed now strongly but sometimes they do it habitually. On the other hand, “liquor-making is looked upon as the duty of the women of the household (The Garos – by Major A playfair, 53).
            Among the Garos, a very few games which they do know, the most importantly are as follows the cock-fighting (the ‘wapang-kala’), a form of wrestling (the ‘gogripa’ or ‘chagripa’) and different other games. At present, they with have to be seen of playing cricket, football and different and different type of gambling. But according to evangelic Christianity some kinds of ‘brutal’ games were forbidden as such cock-fighting. Here, if I think and do know about their amusement then, it must be dancing with drinking as a prominent feature of every social function as well as of religious ceremony of the Garos. They had two types of dancing with the connection at funeral ceremonies and at any joyful occasion where men and women were used to dance together and sometimes separately. Nowadays they have almost nothing to perform according to their former religion and customary practices except a few of joyful occasions. They make various ‘shaped’ or modified and mixed performances according to their habitat ional ways of life and to the Christianity. Christianity and evangelic Christianity is being found in the effective role of changing the Garos to the ‘modern’ world habitation but the Garos have something rest in their habitual way of life. Neither their group boundaries nor the Garo identities have been changed perfectly. Here, religion may be a great factor of massive cultural change but not as equal to the technique of technology based religion centered education and training for conversion.
            A great deal of magical power and charismatic operations have been used with various ideas in respect of Christianity of Jesus Christ to establish the kingdom of God. Actually the ideas of ‘modernization’ to become ‘modernized’ with technological improvement create of the magical or charismatic one. The propagation for Christ as the son of God with endless power of love have made then devoted and created a passion for Christ in a Myth that call for a new religious identity of the Garos who entirely have incorporated to the ‘modern’ boundary as a group. One of them have dreamt a dream that “Jesus Christ have come or appeared or assumed a form with the Garos physical shape or state to relieve them from the great sin of harmful teaching in matrilineal and ‘Shangsharism’ all that they belong as their group boundaries”. The Garo man has reached the spot (Kamala Rani’s pond) who and where he has found the earthen shape which the news has spread in a wind blow to each person. All of them have come to see that which is further by kept by the Missionaries to reserve in the Church. The evangelists say that “it must be of course good news that Jesus Christ has come but they don’t pursue of preserving any assumed forms of gods. They believe that if it will be kept in the church then the followers may be diverted to that direction.
            Actually, the Garos reside in greatest numbers in the Mymensing and Netrakona district have a great deal of groups or divisions in direction to different boundaries approximation. “They occupy the whole of the north of that district, but many of them also live further south and extend even into the Dacca district. Among them are to be found most of the divisions that exist in the hills, the abengs, chisaks, Dauls, Ganchirgs and Atongs all being represented. Besides these, there are other divisions not known in the hills such as the Barks, Jariadongs, Somons, Galnes, and Malongs. In most cases they have retain their own language and customs, but naturally they have acquired many foreign ways and are practically bi-lingual like their brother in the plains of Goalpara”, (The Garos-by Major A. Playfair, 63).
            Here, the Garos have various organizations, institutions, laws and customs as well as their geographical divisions. The Garos descent in motherhood must naturally be in the mother’s live and their kinship ties go to the exogamous sects or clans that a Marak will marry a Momin or a sangma, not a Marak. Their marriage system, worship of deities, customs and rituals, religion ‘Shangsharedk’, language in different group inherent dialect which all have thrown them into different group traditions and some differential practices through within the Garo culture.
            Traditionally they were divided into various groups but interlinked very strongly which were affected by incorporating them in the wider groups from their small kin-groups in respect of the Christian denominations. It causes loosing all of their practices and old customs.
            Nowadays, many of the marriages are in great violation of the rules of exogamous marriage. Many of the educated (at lest have passed the S.S.C examination) persons even go so far as to marry within their own motherhood which violate, their kinship ties and the whole social system. A girl can choose her husband which was on exception when one daughter of a family is given in marriage to the son of her father’s sister or her father’s “motherhood” for a substitute. Inheritance of their all property goes to the women and girls but nowadays the boys also be owners of their mother’s property and can bring their wives in their won houses living with their father-mother’s house. It can’t be said as the metrilocal or patrilocal perfectly which may be told as ‘mixed’ or ‘shaped’ or ‘modified’ type when the son’s-father has not yet considered having inherited any property.
            The Garo unmarried women are in a high moral with their matrimonial bonds which are loose and sometimes adultery have been found for which more severely be punished in former times than it now is. They can be permitted to make a divorce in the following situations.
                                         (i)      When the husband and wife disagree and want to the separation mutually.
                                       (ii)      When either party has been found guilty of adultery.
                                     (iii)      When either the husband or the wife refuses to work or unwilling for supporting the household.

It accomplished by means of a ceremony administered by the priest ‘Kamal’ in which the two victims swear for no dealings with each other in the future by taking some dust in their hands. Nowadays, they can do it through the churches as the marriages have been done completed with one kind of swearing according to the Bible.
The Garos had a land tenure system associating some customary practices. The land belongs to the wife of the ‘nokma’ or headman of each village and it can be sold by a nokma with the permission of his wife and her motherhood. The Garo land tenure system is clearly defined one of the well-known boundaries along with the laws of mainstream people. In lieu of quit-rent as a payment in money or as an annual rent, a stranger is permitted to take up land.
The ‘Shangsharek’ Garos have the beliefs in the existence in man of a spirit and after death the soul dwell for a period of time before being re-incarnated. “. ………. The destinies of man from birth to death are governed by a host of divinities whose anger must be appraised by sacrifice, and whose good offices must be entreated in like manner” (The Garos by –Major A. Playfair, 80).

Their principal spirits is known by several spirits according to their mythology is as follows with their names and respective dealings.
1. Tatara-Rabuga
 The creator of the world who expects an expansive sacrifice.
2. churabudi
A benign spirit, the protector of the crop.
3. Nostu-Nopantu
The deity who fashioned the earth with the help of Machi and at the command of Tatara-Rabuga
4. Saljong
 The god of fertility who is worshipped in the wangala and is represented by the sun.
5. Goera
The god of strength easing of thunder and lightning who is prayed to for health.
6. Kalkame
Garos brother who is responsible for the lives of all men to keep them safe from all dangers of the forest.
7. susime
The giver of riches, causer and curer of blindness and lameness representing the moon
8. Asima-Dingsima
The mother of susime having a superstition of not being pronounced her name.
9. Nawang
An evil spirit who devours the souls of men on their way to the Garo purgatory as well as causes pains in the stomach, vomiting and diarrhea.

            Except these sacrificial (the mostly) ceremonies and beliefs the Garos have also be seen to perform according to their Shangsharek religion in the past that ancestor worship is indicated in the Garo funeral observances, worship of natural forces of thunder, lightning rain, wind, earth quakes and eclipses and shooting stars as the controlling spirits, worship of deities related to cultivation have shown the main features of Garo religious observances with drinking and dancing.

Folklore: The Garos posses a great number of verses and stories that these tales and songs have been handed down from generation to generation by word of mouth. Those tales and songs have also be affected after being converted that their all heroes and heroines have become into negative interpretation the demons or devils by another tales and songs and religious performances. At present times, the older people of Garo can simply remember imperfectly of their former stories, knowledge of Garo beliefs and their customs at various ceremonies. They very old Garo (is about 75 years old). Achsu Marak has said, “Who were their former heroes, now they had have now become into the demons or devils or evil directors”.
            All though the Garos are bilingual in Bengali and of their own language, English in being grown into a distinctive look. Here I have used some Garo words which are translated into English as follows:
Of thee
Ua, bia
Mai, ma
Ja, jatheng
Of me
Ku, kusik
My father
My brother
Rice (uncooked)
Rice (cooked)
To put on clothes
To fear
To plough
To run
To run away
To hear
To look
To see
To bring
To find

 Source: “The Garos” – by Major A. Playfair, 161pg.

World views and Acceptance of Outsiders:

In remote areas, the British East India Company had in the choice to let the Mughals authority for continuing their rule by the local chiefs known as Zamindars on the border lines of the Garo Hills. To maintain peace in that areas they were helped by various weapon to control violation among the Garos and to drive out the obstacles for revenues collection in the ways of local taxes, fees and tolls collection using the greedy and cheater Zamindars as a useful buffer against the “wild tribes”.
The Garos were not only conflictions by the misbehavior of Zamindars but also they were quite capable of creating jealous violence by practicing their own traditions of enthusiastic headhunters. They were in the spiritual beliefs of human head as a prized trophy the sign of their velour and aristocracy. Eliot was the first who left the description about headhunting of the Garos (Eliot, 1794). The ‘Shangsharek’ Garos believed that the soul of died person would have settled on the pick of ‘Chikmang’ or ‘Kailash’ and sacrificed soul would be strengthen its power to climb the highest pick of ‘Chikmang’. This is why they sacrificed the head of a slave or on enemy’s head (may be a Hindus or Garos) by burning on the funeral pyre of a chief. Eliot stated, “A large body of his slaves sally out of the hills, and seize a Hindu, whose head they cut off, and burn with their chief “(1794:28). The head of an important person in the plains was the more valors. Therefore, they did raid each others villages for heads by attacking revengefully as endless feuds in each group. They displayed the horns, bones on the walls of their houses collected from the sacrificed animals that the best was the heads of the human being as the best sacrificial beings.
The Garos would have to make trade with the surrounding people who were essential for them and profitable to the traders. Although they were inspired to do it, both of the Garos and lowlanders feared each other apprehending of the threat of violence. Markets were the soul of their lives for trading chilies, wax, and timber and the most importantly of cotton. But they didn’t use their own cotton in weaving on small belt looms of their own. It was been sold or exchanged for obtaining animals such as cattle, pigs, goats, fowl, ducks and tortoises (Robbins Burling, 1997). The Garos bought salt, paddy, tobacco, areca nuts, and the extract of sugar cane, earthenware pots, cloth, brass, silver jewelry, and dried fish. The Garos would have become outsiders contact for various purposes that were more stated by Robins Burling as such: “Another essential commodity for which Garos were totally dependent upon outsiders was iron tools. Without iron, Garo agriculture would have be impossible, but there is no record that Garos themselves ever did more than make minor repairs on their iron tools. Reports do suggest that blacksmiths from the plains were sometimes encouraged to visit the hills (Sangma 1981:7), but tools were also an important item of market trade. The exchange of crops for iron tools in probably many centuries old”.
The Garos chiefs had many slavers whom they caught in the plans for serving as a sacrificial being to them. The slaves were recognized for being married with the Garo women and their children would have to belong to their mother’s kin group.
Here, various types of contacts with different cultured outsiders had been occurred and the most influential contacts were introduced with the white-skin foreigners whom they had found as their protectors saturation masters. They were in the role of peace creation and/or violence destruction such as headhunting system of the Garos to push them into a wider culture converting religious to the Christianity. Christianity had been propagated and started to incorporate the Garos and others (a very few) in the way to educate, pacify and giving services for the people. David wrote a letter to a Secretary to the Govt. in 1825 encouraging missionary work among the Garos that was quoted in Bhattacharjee 1978:217-218 which was presented by Robbins Burling (1997:26) and which said: “I am satisfied that nothing permanently good can be obtained by other means [than education and Christianity] and if we do not interfere on behalf of the poor Garos, they will soon become Hindoos, or half Hindoos, probably and acquiring many of the bad parts of their present and improved creeds. I would greatly prefer two, or more Moravian Missionaries of the old school who along with religion would tech the useful arts………….[T] he great error of the Missionaries appears to me to that of directing their attention to polished nations instead of rude tribes, who are still in that state of national childhood, which enables the strange priests to act as the schoolmaster and to tech them what he likes (quoted in Bhattacharjee 1978:217-218)” (Robbins Burling 1997:26).
After that letters was written, schools, Missionaries was established permanently in Singimari and Goalpara and after had been converted to Christianity for the first time of Garos in 1863, Omed Momin and his nephew Ramke Momin started to teach and to proselytize for Christianity. This was the way how the Garos involved with Missionaries directly after two of them had been baptized as Baptist. The first foreign Missionary sent by the American Baptist Mission Society in 1866 to educate and to train the Garos of their religion. They learned the Garos languages which had no written records and they wrote the Garo dialects into written forms by using Bengali and English alphabet. They trained nurses and brought public health concerns into the Garos for the first time. Moreover, they made some trained Garo teachers and some converted Garo educated elites for proselytizing for Christianity. They found the best strategies of using own people (to the Garos) for their own people with religious centered educating methods. Here, I can use William Carey’s mood of thinking for the early Baptist mission to the Garos, expressed that “the missionaries believe that the hand of the lord led them first to the most important dialect, since by using this as a base in giving the language a written form they find very little difficulty in their school work in bringing all the divisions to use this one dialect” (Carey 1919:252).
Along with government schools, private schools, the missionary schools spread education rapidly which was stated by Robbins Burling as such “From the beginning education was seen in considerable part, as education for Christianity and the number of Christians rose in parallel with the number of schools and with the number of their pupils. The Missionaries founded the first schools and the teachers they hired were expected to teach Christianity along with arithmetic and literacy. The pattern become so firmly set that when  I was in the Garo Hills in the 1950’s even teachers at government schools took it for granted that one part of their job was to train their pupils for their new religion, and most young people who spent a few years at school deed, in fact, accept baptism. By 1872, less than ten years after the first two Garos joined the church, there were 286 baptized Garo Christians. Since then the number of Garo converts has never stopped growing” (Robbins Burling 1997:28). The British-Indian administrative personnel brought differing policies to protect the rights of the indigenous people to their land by restricting its sale to outsiders and a massive change of the powers of the nokmas, the forms of taxation, the organization of schools, the status of the Garo language and even of the missionaries societies bringing education and Christianity. The Garos ties of language, custom, kinship and friendship that united than and different agricultural practices allowed them to adopt different forms of land tenure brought the Garos into closer contact with a wider world through education, church membership, a new government and the peace. Moreover, the Garos were also used as laborers during the First World War and the Second World War who served as labor battalions.
On the other hand, Missionary activities in a growing tendency had made a decision to Romanize the Garo language for the publications of text books. Although they were bilingual and Bengali was their second language but in the Higher classes all instructions had been deliberated into English.
Evangelical Christianity is marked as a division that is the form in a great conjunction of education training direct supervision of the pastor with congregations which is in the protestant division of labor assigned responsibility to Australian Baptists at present in Bangladesh. Baptists are the majority among Indian Garos when Bangladeshi Garos are mostly the Catholics. A few Mandis are Anglican in Bangladesh belong to the Church of Bangladesh. Seventh day Adventists are also a smaller number in India and Bangladesh. But evangelists are in a growing number of Garos in India and Bangladesh as well as whole over the world. In Birisiri Durgapur many of the Garos who are mostly deceived or cheated, landless labors, non-educated deprived of advantages belong to the evangelical Christianity. Baptists are in the belief of not to initiate into Christianity of children who are incapable realizing it rather the beginning will be arranged in a certain age by undoing his whole body into sacred water. But the children would have to be socialized into Christian community. Evangelism do it from starting by educating directly of the children and believe that only the belief on Jesus who brought good news for mankind can bring them into salvation. Various type of ideas or denomination in Christianity contacts with American soldiers, contacts with Europeans and other peoples drew them into much larger political and social systems that the Garos have been changed profoundly. The Garos have different virtues that were described by many intellectuals as such:-
            John Eliot in his very early description of the Garos said: “Their surly looks seem to indicate ill temper; but this is for from being the case, as they are of mild disposition. They are, moreover, honest in their dealings, and sure to perform what they promise” (Eliot 1794:24). Two decades later Francis Hamilton wrote:
……….the veracity of the whole Garo nation is undoubted; and it is avowed by the Bengalese that a Garo was never known to forfeit his word” (Hamilton 1940:89), written about 1814). The least compromising statement however was written by Edward Dalton in his book ‘Descriptive Ethnology of Bengal’, published in 1972, just before the final incorporation of the Garo Hills into British India. He described the Garos in this way: “They are lively, good natured, hospitable, frank and honest in their dealings, till contaminated by their intercourse with Bengalis, and they possess that pearl of great price so rare amongst Eastern nations- a love of truth. They will not hastily make engagements, because when they do make them they intend to keep them. They are affectionate fathers and kind husbands, and their conduct generally towards the weaker sex is marked by consideration and respect. Notwithstanding the lavish exposure of their persons, the women are chaste and make good steady wives” (Dalton 1872:68).
            Except for acknowledging that the women are no longer so lavish in the exposure of their persons, westerners have known the Garos more recently can still be heard to say much the same thing.
            …………………Mostly Mandis are realistic. They know that the world has changed and that their fate is now tied to the fate of others. Most would not choose to go back to the life of their ancestors, even if the choice were theirs Mandis, too, will soon enter the twenty first century” (Dalton 1872:68).

New search for Ultimate Divinity:

Here, I shall consider in more detail how the converts rationalize their act of embracing Christianity. According to their ancient common religious theology often includes the baffling existence of multitudes of gods and goddesses, their cognitive wandering about whom to submit for ultimate salvation and their reluctance of considering Shangsharism as Hindu deities as divine and how these new Christians evaluated different factors to make up their mind to adopt a new doctrine. Here, I preset some thoughts of their ultimate salvation for a better insight.

Case 1: An old (about 75 years) but strong Garo man, who was baptized in evangelism, explained the causes of their conversion in this manner:
            We have converted to the Christianity for the sake of salvation. Though we are ignorant, we feel that there is a creator who can give me salvation easily to be performed. I am not so educated but there are so many gods in Shangsharism, I never know to whom I shall submit. We don’t know who can give us salvation. Before accepting Christianity, I have also read some books on it ……………Jesus said, “those who love me and follow my path, I do always forgive them. I am the God, I am the truth, and I am the way”. I have read that how to participate in Christian life, words of god for the deliverance from the universal cognition of earthly sin, the God’s love for human and humanity that have make him to give His son for their rescuing not only for consoling and have the answers easily of ‘is There A God?’, ‘Teach’ us how to pray’, ‘Free from fear’, ‘life worth Living’, ‘Forty eight Hours in Hell’, ‘Sincere but Mistaken’ and written good news from Johon etc. it is our pastor who used to discuss Christianity with me and helped me to come out from my excessive drinking habit while I was Shangsharek Garo. He does not mind to dine with us at my place. Even the foreign pastor’s respect and love us …….you cannot expect such behavior from any Brahman Hindu. On the other hand, ‘Tablig Jamat’ who propagates or evangelizes for the sake of Islam is limited only among the Muslims, they never come to us.
                Once I became very sick due to Jaundice remaining in bed for about a month. I was mentally so weak that I thought I might die. Though I took medicine from doctor, but I believe that the blessing of Lord Jesus was also at work. At that time the members of the Christian congregation came to me. They cried for my health setting by my side and I gradually recovered my health.
                Once, my mother had dreamt a dream that two men are showing to her a book. She saw different paths before her and she was asked to choose one. She chose the clear one. After that those two men gave her baptism in a pond. She went to church and talked to the pastor and after that she was given baptism. She told that to my father and from that time we were become converted to the Christianity. But we are now in a great distress and suspicion that what is our culture divided into different religious groups in broken unity with abolishing traditions.  
                Major A. Playfair has described about the religion of the Garo ‘Shangsharek’ as animatisms in a greater sense. Belief in all lifeless things (as the two type of Sacred and profane sacrificial stones) and in nature that spirits live in those and can cause the harm or useful doings for giving sacrifice or appeasement to those which is need for their own sake. But the Garos Shangsharism will be termed as the polytheism and may be it will be termed as the Garo evolution from polytheism to monotheism.
            Their suspicion for their Shangsharek religion had made them converted in a great increased rate. The first educated Garo had been converted to the Christianity in 1872 was named Radhanath Bhowmik and after that time Christianity was spread rapidly to the Garo society. The Garo Baptist convention was established at Birisiri in 1890. Here, we see the proportion of converted Garos as follows. Source: Birisiri Tribal Cultural Academy –’85.

Year of establishment
Number of followers
Garos Baptists convention
20,000 (about)
Anglican Christians of Oxford Mission
10,000 (about)
Catholic Christian Mission
Rani Kong
40,000( about)
Seventh-day-Adventists and Panthekstal Christian

10,000 (About)
Hodi, Dhalu, Banai, Hindu, and Shangsharek Garos

15,000 (about)
Total Garos where (about) 95% are Christian

95,000 (about)

            The first initiatives have taken by the Missionaries to spread the education along with several other goods and services and real love for them in different dangers for the purposes of being more logical and realistic. The Christian Missionary Organizations had deliberated remember able services to the Garos in 1964 and 1971. A considerable number of primary schools (about 275), High schools and junior High Schools (about 18) were established by the Garo Baptists convention as well as other Christian Mission, where the students are not only Garos but also Hindu and Muslim students are studying at those institutions. Nowadays these numbers are highly increased.
            In Birisiri almost all of the Garos are converted to the Christianity and evangelicals are increasingly going forward with various services and techniques. They involves with socializing institutionally of the new generation or young’s Garos. Because, their economical, social, mental or psychic views and dealings are closely related or psychic views and dealings are closely related to their former religious beliefs as well as a great relation between the Garo culture and their former Shangsharism, therefore, they must be habituated. As Christian Garos are practicing their group traditional matrilineal, kinship, exogamous marriage rules, funerals etc, they have to be directed to the new worldly life by evangelicals.

6. Reasons behind the Growth of Christianity

The passion of Christ brought various religious movements since 1715 in England. It was felt that the Church of England in the 18 century contributed little to solving enormous and widespread moral problems created by excessive drink (especially gin), cruelty and crime. Its influence seriously declined and the Church was identified encompassing small ruling class. As a field for ‘careerism’ of the servants the Church felt for more in a good life, their incomes in several parishes with the view of ‘pluralities’. Methodism arose with the desire of fastening widespread loss of faith in Christianity as a counter to these social and religious conditions. Creating standards of a pure life John, Charles Wesley. George Whitefield (who established the Calvinistic Methodists) with their immense organizing powers established the Methodist group. They dedicated their lives to achieve a decrease in drunkenness and crime through their direct appeal to the ordinary people and setting example in their personal lives. Popular education and literacy bringing influenced a great deal of working-class and trade unions. Moreover, the Methodists established a Book Room in London and published magazines (not only with religious material but also leading literary works supported by Shelley, Keats and Byron) with moral influences broke-away of some distrusted groups to conversion. They strongly supported missionary societies through the activities of the evangelicals. The evangelical movements within the Church is associated with the important works of such men as William Wilberforce, Lord Shaftesbury, Bishop Ryle of Liverpool, Granville Sharp and Thomas Clarkson in relation to the conscience of the 19 century and much social reforms that are Anti-slavery Society against slave trade which led on to the Emancipation Act of 1833, Clapham sect against public immortality, slavery brutal sports (such as bull-baiting and cock-fighting), bad factory conditions the harshness and brutality of the criminal code and the Sunday School movement of Robert Raikes for prison reform. They advocated popular education and Lord Shaftesbury (president of the Ragged Schools Union, a founder of the Young Men’s Christian Association and the working men’s institutes) agitated for factory reform. He became successful in securing protection for badly exploited minorities (most notably the boy chimney-sweeps).
            On the other hand, the Anglican Church developed the High Church Movement which stressed on giving new dignity to the Church by reviving ritual and stressing on the bishops and the priesthood with the concern of church doctrine. John Henry Newman, John keble, Hurrell Froude and Edward Pusey were the important dens of the Oxford Movement, Edward Pusey and others established the Anglo-Catholic movement. They published a long series of ‘Tracts for the times’ stressing the connection of the Church of England with the Roman Catholic Church before the protestant reformations of the 16th century.
            The Christian Socialists applied the doctrines of Christianity directly to industrial and political problems and identify socialism with Christianity. The pioneers were Thomas Hughes author to ‘Tom Browns School days, Charles kingsley (the novelist), Frederick Denison Maurice, E.V. Neale and others, Co-operative wholesale Society (1852), church Socialist League was formed by them as the Christian Socialist Movement.
            The Salvation Army founded by William Booth (1829-1912), was another important direct movement to the social evils of the times. Its subject was mob attacks and religious conversion allied to direct social work and reform, through such agencies as farm colonies, poor men’s savings banks and poor men’s lawyers.
            All of the religious reforms took part in the center when the great colonial power whole over the world that the policies were also established into its peripheral colonies for extending their-societies. All of the methods were also used the British-Indian Administrative mostly to the deprived and distrust people (who obtaining several group identities) of remote areas, Evangelical Christianity related with Gospel (which most important four writers were Matthew, Mark, John or look) that carrying good news (massages of the God) against social evils of the times.
            There was always a conflict between religion and Science. When science deals with material concern of human mainly then religion on the other hand is embodied with spiritual satisfaction that inspiring for a disciplined life leading into diversified activities inter-owned with cultural pluralities. More realistic religious doctrines directly related with serving for human. Religion more related with science and earthly logical creates more influences on peoples who are distrusted and drowned in chaos and endangered. The ‘Shangsharek’ Garos were in that believed of religion. But different religious movements for social reforms in the center that is also related with power practicing causes result the societies to the new direction. Though communism never felt the essentialities of religion except science for its basic roles for creating technological upbringing with societies, Max Weber did a great arguments with Marxism explaining how ideologically religious reforms could change the psychology of human to adapt new technologies as the agents of enlarging life demands into infinity but religion brought them into a structure. Protestantism through Calvinism created a break-down from the conservative Roman Catholic Church into capitalism. But to do that they were in the lack of moral essence that would be resulted into cut off its relation with religion. It would be the great inquiry that how Protestantism on the contrary was developed into its characteristics by the total circumstances especially economic condition. The Garos are also being questioned of the situation that they were belonging to be converted before being converted to the Christianity.
            It is quit clear that the prevailing religious practices or beliefs amongst the Garos were no match for the Christian theology, but the Garos were in the socio-political situation prevailing in the period preceding British entry to the area. Hindu and Muslim both were politically disorganized socially dispersed. They had nothing to offer to the hill men. Moreover, a suspicious relation between the Garos and the neighboring plain Landers created the lack of meaningful communication. On the other hand, the plainsman always considered the Garos noting more than “savages”.
            The Shangsharek Garos had no institutionalized structure of power that could resist outsiders’ pressures and their older religion lacked any interest in its preservation. There were inadequate demands of a religion of spirits and animal sacrifices in the modern world. Moreover, education brought the Garos into modern world as having the prestige of gaining the wider perspectives of the world rejecting religion as one of the ‘Shangsharek’ of them that made appeal for a new philosophical wonder standings of the outsiders. They felt far having the central position from which defended by their old religious values. They always performed in a group tradition but evangelical and others denomination helped them to form individuality which they deprived of that aspiration.
            Christian Missionaries had an ideal situation to exploit with the great administrative power of the rising sun of the British Empire behind them. They had faced the initial failures and the missions gradually improved their technique, changing their approach with their various religious performs to the direct hard effort for wining the confidence of the prospective converts by serving or assisting the Garos in their distress, particularly medical assistance.
            They won the missionaries friends and admires and many converts were gained just as a result of ‘simple missionary cure’. The missionary schools although most were centered on the Churches, they had given them the opportunity to read or recite of the Gospel that brought a radical change for the convert. I had found the village school teachers bringing the pupils easier cognition of the Christ and prayers for deliverance from sin.
            On the other hand, the converted Garos, I heard to say that the Missionary evangelizers had worked a very hard respecting then though being rejected to gain their loyalty. It was considered that ‘one of the greatest instruments of success of Christianity will be the diffusion of Christian knowledge’.
            The Garos seem to have had a strong sense of their own group identity and Christianity paved the way easier to maintain their separation from their neighbors. Since their relations with outsiders have not always been peaceful or even friendly so they wanted separate from the majority people. Moreover Christianity offered them to be identified them with a religion of world importance.
            Direct material incentives, support, shelter had to be taken by the missionaries to protect new non-converts from their non converted relatives.
Christianity may have given them a sense of belonging a new status that they can be able to ‘develop’ themselves with a rapidly changing world. On the contrary, they didn’t want accept or assimilate with other neighbor’s religions and did not to being remained as the ‘ignorant sudras’ being converted by Hindus.
Christianity gave them the opportunities to maintain a little but of the kinship practices but changes in a ‘mixed’ or ‘shaped’ group culture has been constituted by them. Its not a matter of that the converted Garos are only Christian, they were not ‘Shangsharek’ and other group traditions were been vanished into air perfectly.

Conversion with Modernization:

The Garo conversion to Christianity has created a vast change in their way of life from Shangsharek religion. Where religious change is not only encircled in their traditional behavioral life or habitual life but also is encapsulated into a new cultural contact. When it is clear that changes in their social structure different from chief system. Their created socio-economic reality and psychological void in context of their acculturated but not perfectly and their diminishing culture that have go so far from their very destination for aspiring in search of their ultimate divinity. What kind of change have been taken to them into various ideologies of development that are conversion with modernization, enlightening with education and training improving skill for creating own wealth by suppressing various superstitions in ‘Shangsharism’ feelings of incorporating in new technological necessities, more rationality in procuring the easiest religious spirit of spiritual satisfaction. When evolutionists saw that as the dynamism of societies step by step to the new conversion of lives in a whole culture, there the new evolutionist Leslie A. White had sat technology as the standard of emancipating energy for denoting the societies in multidimensional advancement. She has considered it as the civilizations with the rising of Protestantism from Catholicism though their religious movements in England for religious reforms have evolved with the necessities of connection to Roman Catholic trend than separateness from it. On the other hand, Max Weber has showed the essential characteristics of transformation of feudalism into capitalism of England by protestant spirits that had spring with Calvinism. In the context of Marxism, change or social transformation would come with being separated the means of production from its production relations. New technology or new means of production could change rapidly the society physically. But the Garos in Birisiri have remained in their some of former practices or in a shaped or modified traditions which may have changed perfectly that will take more times or generations if such practices have in a continuity. Actually, the evangelical Christianity has gone so forward to their destination to make the Garos into being found as a ‘developed’ group and ‘modernized’ men. But their matrilineal and gender role, occupational Garo women have been affected in various perspectives by incorporation to the wider society and religious as well as newer cultural constructions of roles of men and women.  It demands further inquiries to examine in the role of Christian Garo women of gender basis.
            I have in sighted their spiritual belongings renewed into a ‘mixed’ or ‘shaped’ performances to maintain their group identities but into a new religious identity is considered by them as a development in a degree. These are necessitating into them with various processes which are integrating them into wider societies with a new identity. Here, it has been arisen the question of concealing their former identity inter-owned from ‘Shangsharism’ encompassing their whole culture i.e. way of life. The clash between the reserving of former customs, traditions, practices into a modified behavioral meanings and the different or perfectly changed into a new identity of modern Garo in Birisiri. But the Garos don’t think without their ancestral group identity and not to be remained in their ignorant lives. In that respect, they are changing as usual ways of surrounding lives as their means of production has not been changed drastically equalizing to their neighboring mainstream societies. Here, evangelism or evangelic Christianity or Christianizing help them to reach to the destination of acquiring newly created aspects of ‘modern’ reality or the meanings of ‘modern’ life style. These processes are also going on or were going on into different similar groups by Hinduaizing, Islamizing and Budhaizing along with modernizing processes to the wider or mainstream societies. But when they are fear about their Garo identities to the identity of Christian Garo that make them into a great conflict of ‘civilizations’. Various aspects have come out before of them as Bengali culture Assamese culture, Bangladeshi recognition, Hindu culture, Muslim culture and Christian culture etc and their own Garo culture.
            The Garos have given up their former ‘brutal’ practices as such as Head hunting and some sort their ‘Shangsharek’ traditions but even now they practicing their former and original social, economical, psychological or mental views and meanings in a newer or ‘modern’ or ‘mixed’ or ‘modified’ or ‘shaped’ type of belongings in religiously, matrilineal, funeral habitually habitat ional ways of life, regional essence. It will be a matter of a critical inquiry that what sort of development and culture they have been acquired or are being acquiring.
            They were into various small groups which are strongly interrelated in their kinship of matrilineal and exogamous marriage rules and inheritance rules of ancestral wealth that all of these are being into loosen by integrating into different wider religious groups in Christianity. They are in a lacking of the feelings of uniqueness, less unity, unequal group bearings or individualistic and solidarity less. All of deferential have been created into the processes of being changing in conversion with modernization. May I do examine the carious criteria or indicators of Development but it would be examined in the context of pluralities as because as they are in the position of postmodern crisis of development, and in the ethnicity of ethnic or tribal identities to Bangladesh Christian Garo.
            Here, I use some of the subdivisions of the Garo exogamous steps founded by Major A. Playfair in ‘The Garos’, (155 pg.) as in the following:
Gabil Chigisll
Gabil Dabit
Gabil Tabil
Naringre Kilong
Bolwari Dewanjong
Mrong Danil
Ransa Gipi
Agitok Koksep

            I have explained before that they are now divided into different wider religious groups. Evangelical Christianity is one of the denominational religious groups that deal a great in development aspirations. Here, they no need of the recognition of their kinship group in subdivided into various exogamous septs of incorporating to the trends of Christianity which has loosen their kinship and matrilineal ties on bonds as well as their politico-social structure in head or chief system or ‘Nokma’ system to the personal inheritance of property but not perfectly. On the other hand, when the Hill Garos and the plain Garos were in the occupational role respectively of the ‘Jhum’ (slash and burn) cultivation and the plough cultivation into ‘Nokma’ based which are now into the wet land rice cultivation. The minor occupation was hunting animals and now a few of them are engaged in teacher ship into the missionary schools in a lower salary. Some of the young Garos into service of B.D.R. line and a few are Govt. Service holder. Business or trade is not spread among them and they produce almost nothing in market. Most of them are earning their lives as a day laborer. Because, they have lost their most land by being cheated by the tout people that fall them into a miserable condition.  The Garos had found them in backwardness than the neighboring or surrounding people comparatively into their own simplicity and non-organized chaos that necessitated them to accept a more realistic identity to become ‘modern’ when other big religions were not as liberal as Christianity to attract them. It will be termed as a cold war of oppressed against oppressors. Here, a materialistic philosophy of ‘modern’ cultural and religious life style has been assimilated by them into their own form. Christianity with modernization has opened or eradicated the obstacles of smooth life leading. Moreover, they are aspiring for a developed state of life at least as equal to the mainstream people. But even now they are deprived of various advantages than the Bengali people.
            When ‘about 80% Garo people are very poor living under the poverty line then various steps have been taken by the welfare organizations among the Garos mainly of world vision, caritas and YMCA (Young Men Christian Association) and Tribal Welfare Association as well as various other Non-Governmental Organizations.
            Developments initiatives have been divided into two types of (I) wage earning activities or food supply and shelter providing steps and (ii) development activities. In 1964 and 1971 the Garos were being sheltered respectively with the help of Miserore and Corr or Caritas with Credit Union by giving food, clothes, tin for house building, cows and seeds etc. world vision has started its mission for spreading education in 1972 among the Garos. About more than 10,000 Garo students enroll in 85 primary schools are being directed into its initiatives. Within these schools in total students of 23,000 and 50 schools are under the conduct of the primary schools G.B.C education organization and 35 schools are under the conduct of Government. Moreover, primary Training Institute is directed by G.B.C to the donation of WORLD VISION. Nowadays it is considered that about 50/60 percent of Garos are educated (at least have completed the primary education).
            It is also be considered by them that “Survival of the fittest in the law of nature” derived from Charles Darwin. They feel the need of achieving the suitability and capability to adapt with the socio-economic-political adverse situation to be fitted in their cruel reality and into the great competitive life struggle. They were in that feelings when they had already been lost their own ‘Mahary’ land in rest of only 30% land on them. About 80% Garo people in Birisiri had their lives on daily earning of wage labor. On the other hand, a very few of them are highly educated and higher occupational jobs have not been well paved for the future prosperity of the Garos in a whole society.
            Various change in variable lines in different proportion of geographical, political, economical, cultural, religious, educational, organizational, co-mixture, ideological, science and industrial effects on their society along with others and effects of new migration settlement, the newer gender construction and identity have fall them into a great complexity and living in plurality. Though most of the habitual works have been done by the Garo women but they are now considered that they are not suitable naturally as with the physical weakness for maintaining their land ownership. After being converted they have been diverted to the western life style along with the general processes of assimilation of broader culture by being acculturated. Now their religious performances are in the newer tradition in different shape or living in mixture culture when their sociality and locality belonging their habitat ional way of life. Actually Material concerns of ‘modern’ life is the main fact of being converted as they are cognitized that the passion of the Christ must carry for them a higher real-life problem solving suitability of the contemporary lives that lead the spirited power when the others have not shown any love or respect to them and endangered them to run for the competitions of life struggle.

Suggestions for Future Research
My limitations

            Based on different and multi-lineal divergence to the new religious groups formation that are now the prominent group of evangelic Christianity among the Garos for the aspiration of Growth and Development, the following guidelines are suggested for future research that I have not conducted on the Garo people of Birisiri in Netrakona district.
(i)      One of the most powerful and very negotiated suggestions that evangelic Christianity is involving with the aspiring development processes in the advantageous position of being converting. Changing of their philosophical identity into a closed group traditions and practices haven’t paved the way of smooth life without material upbringings that is facing the cultural conflicts. In-depth studies would be concerned with how and why various problems have been arising in that situation when many of them don’t want to be abolished with their matrilineal, sociality, locality and kinship ties.
(ii)      When the Christian Missionaries are were in the field for several years and the directors are their own people who are creating a great dependency on them  and the donations are supplied by the foreign countries, anthropologists would be in the concerns of originated obstacles after being converted.
(iii)      When most other development studies and planning that includes the women to the development works in the patriarchal societies, but here the women are in the processes of various constructions of about women role to the patriarchal.
(iv)      There health system and medical pluralism would be concerned with their indigenous knowledge, agricultural work of women and men jointly, their migration-al labor, poverty reduction initiatives with governance and studies are needed evaluating the experiences of various NGOs with respect to generating employment and improving the economic situation of poor Christian Garos.
(v)      Here, I have studied the Garos of Birisiri in respect of their conversion to the Christianity and how the evangelical Christianity actively was involved with the Garos changing their traditional identity to practice power and controlling them as supremacy in ethnocentric form recognizing traditionalism must the eradicated for their ultimate development to the prosperity.
(vi)      I have used of various data and information from the studies of different ethnographic studies and statistical data from Birisiri Tribal cultural Academy in Netrakona of Bangladesh.
(vii)      Various applied fields and considerations have been slinked away and may have not discussed many relevant topics and irrelevant thoughts may have created a great discontinuities but it would be cleared what I want to do for understanding the Garos. I have the confidence to understand the Garos initiatively for the future application of that experience which I have acquired with the great help of different people.


Here, I have discussed in the preceding chapters that, religion is not a fact of holding fundamentally. It is also be changeable in course of times. When the societies are in the processes of creating new ideas and inventions, people has contributed immensely towards the present-day politics. People are incorporating into a globalizing society in the processes of widening the technological, industrialized and high-cultural or popular dimensions within the contact and migrations which has resulted the societies into the acculturation and assimilation. In these processes of educating and training are the most effective for acquiring new knowledge’s, ideas, even new psychological and philosophical ordering/ arranging/ shaping with the secular aspiration of ‘modern’ life leading. But traditionalism and cultural heritages in containing identities, religions are the most influencing as world universal. World rejecting religions and traditions are being attracted for converting to the wider societies. Religious conversion is the great factor of changing societies for aspiring to the ‘modernized’. It is also being considered as the upbringing of societies into a developed one.
            Each of the religious believers wants to establish and dominate with their philosophy that they believe, when many of others also believe in different routs of devotion. The Garos have the choices and/or being forced to make the choice to the Christianity. But their local behavioral and habitual or habitat ional realities have then into the duplicity of inherits a mixed or shaped culture. Religious Shangsharek group traditions are their base of the Garo identity and Christianity is the founding identity of constructing the Christian Garos. And evangelical Christianity has gone so far to their destination with their world-wide propagation for Jesus.
            It is also be found that the accusation that missions acted as vanguards of British administration cannot be ruled out. But in the initial period the Christian missions in these hills worked under various odds and the dedication, sacrifices and sincerity of working in remote areas, unfriendly in many cases, were highly commendable for bearing the extra ordinary courage of conviction on the part of these evangelists.
            It is also noted of the ever growing radical tendency among the Garos and the secularization of their movement that they profess a synthesis of socialism and Christ. But the ultimate outcome of these religious movements to contain only the Christian feelings as the most important factor in sparkling off the Garo ethnicity.
            Here, I can denote the important findings of Ferdaus A. Quarishi as said, “it has been found that missionaries in their overzealous attempt to ‘civilize the heathens’, placed so many restrictions on the traditional social life of the tribals that created a cultural void in the area, causing social destabilization. Many of the strict social rules enforced by the missionaries had no real bearing on Christianity as such, and some of the traditional social institutions, customs or festivities of the tribals could have been retained with slight modification without compromising any basic tenet of Christianity.
            It has also been observed that in spite of mass Christianization, tribals are now again looking back to their heritage, trying to restore some of the lost traits and in fact some of the social customs of earlier days still prevail in spite of all the prohibitions and prescriptions by the missionaries”.

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