Saturday, December 24, 2022

How I started research journey on Gurung culture?

Twelve years ago, I was studying engineering in Kathmandu. It was during the midpoint of college life, my father passed away. The incident took place in my village at Syangja. On that day, he had gone to cut grass in the field near home. On the way back, he suddenly fainted. I was in Kathmandu. I got this news at midnight. He was still unconscious.


It was impossible for me to go home immediately. Sleep became hostile to me. I scrutinised outside my room. The environment was very dark and desolate. After some time, I phoned home to know the condition. A neighbour picked up the phone instead of a family member. When picked up the phone, in the background I heard my family members wailing emotionally. I ensured myself, that he is no more. Tears rolled down my cheeks. In the chill morning twilight, I went to home Syangja. Sweet moments with my father kept swirling in my mind. 

fig: Author @'Kohlasothar(Gurung anecstral place)

During the death ritual, I listened serga (shamanic song) sung by shamans (pachyu). They clarified to me how departed souls leave the world, why and how we persuade and make them go to siminasa (land of ancestors) uniting with old ancestors. I shocked. I became emotional. I had never experienced this before. 

In a corner of my heart, I felt so proud of the deeper meaning embedded in serga. I had seen death rituals and serga many times before. But it was very different. The difference is perspective. I found I had observed before from an outsider's perspective. I began to observe from an insider's perspective. It ignited certain ideas in my intellectual landscape and started my journey of research on culture.


I thought this time-honoured culture should be preserved and promoted. It laid the foundation for writing books, dramas and films. The more I researched Gurung culture, the more I found science in it. It fueled me to further research. Many people ask me, you are from a science background but you are endorsing tradition and culture, what kind of person you are?


I answer- "If I didn't study science, I wouldn't probably do it. Science is what drives my research. Quantum science is hidden in my culture." It may sound strange. It may seem controversial. But it holds true. We cannot understand our culture from classical (Newtonian) science. One of the common mistakes I experienced is that many observe through classical science and criticize culture. It's not the correct way. To understand in-depth, it is necessary to understand through quantum science. Quantum science has revolutionized the world. 

When we study at a quantum level, we will find how scientific our culture is. Later, I studied anthropology to understand the culture more deeply and broadly. This book has been written from a school of thought that yields two perspectives of science and anthropology. This is the best approach needed to understand the culture. Keeping in mind the busy lifestyle of readers, this book is designed in such a way that the culture can be understood in a short time. I hope you all enjoy this book.

Excerpt: 'The science of Gurung culture' book 


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