Monday, November 9, 2020

How Gurungs maintain Solidarity?

Solidarity is a very mattering preference to maintain peace and harmony in society. In this industrial age, solidarity has shown very weak signal among peoples. It has resulted in disbalance and disorder in society. This is a very serious issue all over the world. Gurungs are maintaining solidarity amidst modernization. How they maintain solidarity? In this article, I am going to explore a few important reasons for Gurung solidarity. 

According to French sociologist Emile Durkheim, there are two kinds of solidarity which are i. Mechanical solidarity and ii. Organic solidarity.

Gurungs are performing mechanical solidarity. In this solidarity, there is high social integration based on collective conscience. 

To maintain rigid or mechanical solidarity in society, it is necessary to have a collective conscience or common belief among all the members of society. People should have shared beliefs and values. Is there any means or way for Gurungs to allow common conscience? Is there any basis for Gurungs to have shared beliefs and values? The answer tune with 'yes.' 


Gurungs have spiritual text which is called Pye-Tah-Lhu-Tah. This text lays the foundation to have a common conscience for Gurungs. It echoes about the collective history, events, belief and values of Gurung. It assures them that they are descendants of Kheku-Maangi. Kheku refers to nine male ancestors and Maangi refers to seven female ancestors. At present, populations are large in number, but it has devised 'We feeling' among Gurungs binding with each other. 

Gurungs believe in the power of nature and ancestor. They believe nature and ancestor possess supernatural power. This is one of the collective conscience of Gurungs. They perform different rituals to deal with nature and their ancestors. They do it to control their physical world. They believe rituals maintain harmonious relationship not only in the physical world but also with the non-physical or supernatural world. 

This sameness makes all Gurungs to be identified as similar members in society creating homogeneity. There are no differences in the belief and values of individuals. They have the same feelings among individuals which helps to create solidarity. But in the modern age, different individuals have different beliefs and values within society. It weakens solidarity. 

Gurungs have three kinds of shamans-Pachyu, Khlepree and Bonpo lam. They perform healing works; different rituals to interact with the supernatural world. Their rituals are based on Pye-tah-lhu-tah. With the death rite by their shamans, Gurungs believe that the departed souls are sent to Siminasa(land of ancestors) and remain peace and blissful with Kheku-Maangi. This belief about after death helps Gurung to bond consciously and unconsciously each other. 

Kinship based ties

In modern society, people connect each other by the division of labour. In other words, the connectivity or ties is based on skill or specialization of work. For example, to complete a particular project, it is necessary to have different skilled and unskilled persons like an engineer, manager, contractor, labour etc.  They are interdependent each other but only for survival. It also creates solidarity but continues until projects run. 

Gurungs have a division of labour but it is based on kinship. For example, in Pae ceremony(death rite) there is a various division of works but they are dominated by kinship. The son, daughter and all the relatives have different duties and responsibilities in Pae ceremony. They all perform their work. Since the kinship is relative, soon or later, all members have the same role in their living world. This creates the same belief, values among all the members, which creates the same duties and responsibilities. It has become the ground for solidarity among Gurungs. 


Solidarity creates power and makes human society meaningful. Gurungs have more inclined to mechanical solidarity amidst the effect of modernization(individualism). Pye-tah-lhu-tah and kinship-based ties are the main foundation for their solidarity.  


Delivered by FeedBurner