Group Identity

A Flag, a Story and a Nation

One of the first women to ever weave the Naga national flag, Lathon Kemp, passed away on the 5th of January, 2021. The news of her death brings to mind the flag and the very important place it holds in the life of the Nagas. Although, it was hoisted for the first time on the 22nd of March in 1956 in the Parashen-Rengma region, the Nagas believe the flag to have a divine origin and not designed by any mortal. A red, green and yellow rainbow is spread out against a field of blue which represents the sky.

Orality

Nagaland is home to nearly two million people consisting of 16 constituent major tribes that speak over 89 dialects (mostly mutually unintelligible between two tribes) and are without a common language and script.

According to the most famous legend regarding the Naga script, it was given to the people on animal skin which, when nobody was looking, was eaten by a dog leading to the script being lost forever. Certain variations to the legend also claim that the Assamese script was given on stone for which it endured as against the Naga script on animal hide which perished.

Legendary Folktale Behind the Origin of the Ao Tribe

Out of 16 recognised tribes of Nagaland, the Aos are considered as the second largest ethnic group. Chungliyimti, the watershed village in Nagaland holds the symbolic significance behind the legendary folk tale of the ancestry of the Aos. It is believed that the ancestors of the first tribe to embrace Christianity in Nagaland ; i.e the Aos emerged from the six stones which are still in the village of Chungliyimti.

Traditional Soybean Cury

Famous Traditional PaOh Soybean Cury

This one of the most famous traditonal foods in our country, Myanmar, especially in Southern Shan State.

The PaOh ethnic group has been used to this kind of food since their ancestors. Soybean cury and the PaOh ethnic people are inseparable from their society.

They always use every ingredient (soybean, chilli, salt, tomato, peanut oil) in these foods from their local resources without buying from outsides.

Konbaung Dynasty and Luntaya Acheik

Luntaya acheik originated in Konbaung dynasty (1752-1885) and could be worn only by kings and queens. If this new fabric was presented respectfully to the king and queen, a prize would be awarded to the giver. Commoners were not allowed to wear a new one but it could worn the king’s hand-me-downs which is awarded to the outstanding person in the service of the king.

Independence and Freedoms

The whole Naga struggle, it is purely because of the invasion by India...this here is our land, this is ours. The coming of the English language too has given us new terms to describe us, including the word “indigenous” which itself is a way of saying that we are under India and it distorted our definition of who we are. After the British invasion, India too thought of us as a weak people and that it has a sense of ownership over us that led to the making of the state. It was an opportunity for Nehru to show a backup plan by giving us statehood which we didn’t ask for.

Thet-pyauk-taing: The Memorial Pole

This oral narrative was collected by the students exploring the word concept - belief. 

The guardian spirit was once an ordinary man. One day, while he was crossing the strem, he was bit by a tiger or kyar and died. The villagers erected a teak wood pole as a memorial to him and named it Thet-pyauk-taing. And from then on he became Taungthaman Bo Bo Gyi, the guardian spirit.

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