Thursday, 19 January 2006

Trip to Rajasthan: Visiting the Bishnoi

From Jodhpur we went on a one day trip out to the surrounding villages belonging to the Bishnoi tribe. The Bishnoi are perhaps one of the most conservationistic tribes in the world. Not only are all living creatures holy to them - also trees are to be protected and never cut down! History has it that more than 60 Bishnoi villagers once died trying to protect a tree from being cut down by the men of the local Maharaja. To express his remorse he made the area in which they lived a sanctuary for animals and trees - perhaps the first national park in the world? To this day the area is still protected and the Bishnoi today still live as they did centuries ago. They have not adapted to modern life and its technology. In that sense they are much like the amish in America.

Rikke in a traditional Rajasthani dress at a Bishnoi house

Jacob posing with Rajasthani turban

A traditional Bishnoi home. Apparently scooters are the exception to the rule of no modern technology. Or perhaps they were having a visitor?

Since Bishnoi children are not used to driving in motor vehicles playing in our jeep was a great attraction. But my camera also managed to get their full attention as is very apparent on the picture.

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