One of the most studied tribal religions in India, Santhal religion worships Marang buru or Bonga as supreme deity. The weight of belief, however, falls on a court of spirits (bonga), who handle different aspects of the world and who must be placated with prayers and offerings in order to ward off evil influences. These spirits operate at the village, household, ancestor, and sub-clan level, along with evil spirits that cause disease, and can inhabit village boundaries, mountains, water, tigers, and the forest. A characteristic feature of the Santhal village is a sacred grove on the edge of the settlement where many spirits live and where a series of annual festivals take place.
The most important spirit is Maran Buru (Great Mountain), who is invoked whenever offerings are made and who instructed the first Santhals in the brewing of rice beer. Maran Buru's consort is the benevolent Jaher Era (Lady of the Grove).
A yearly round of rituals connected with the agricultural cycle, along with life-cycle rituals for birth, marriage and burial at death, involves petitions to the spirits and offerings that include the sacrifice of animals, usually birds. Religious leaders are male specialists in medical cures who practice divination and witchcraft. Similar beliefs are common among other tribes of northeast and central India such as the Kharia, Munda, and Oraon.
Smaller and more isolated tribes often demonstrate less articulated classification systems of the spiritual hierarchy, described as animism or a generalized worship of spiritual energies connected with locations, activities, and social groups. Religious concepts are intricately entwined with ideas about nature and interaction with local ecological systems. As in Santhal religion, religious specialists are drawn from the village or family and serve a wide range of spiritual functions that focus on placating potentially dangerous spirits and coordinating rituals.
The Santhals are an agricultural tribe, from time immemorial they have cleared forests, toiled the land, and produced food for subsistence. Santhal laborers were considered very efficient and they easily found employment in coal mines. Beside agriculture they also domesticate animals like cows, buffaloes and pigs. Apart from these the Santhals also are well versed in the art of hunting, where their exceptional skills with bow and arrows is noticeable. After the ban on hunting by the Government of India, the Santhals do not get chance to practice their archery skill but recently a new venture of organizing village level archery competitions during festive seasons has given a chance to culture this unique legacy. Those adopted and educated by the Christian missionaries were in a better position. There were a few Santhals in Government jobs holding high posts. The Santhal Deputy Commissioner, the village Heads, the Darogas, musicians and the teachers.
Santhals have taken up profession in every field. There are good number of Santhal doctors, engineers, governments servants, the opening up of new avenues after the arrival of the Christian missionaries, and the English education have changed their lifestyle and made it typically urban.
Feelings, my feelings are stuck on a old tin can in the infinite blue. Dont worru im not asking you to care! In actuality i am asking you to buy me a beer and listen to a story which whatever path it takes feelings will be involved! So just sit there with a distinguished smug on yor face, while ill be sifting rhru stories, so they can become words. Words of interest....... Whatever happened to me to be here right now, wherever i am......... Gently becoming your own thaught of persona, with the rage of humanity lurking with in my veines, selfish words it may be. I wonder if thoose thoughts have entered my human persona. Poetry reading and writing, fish killing and eating, glacier looking, mountain wandering, marijuana smoking, alchol drinking. Autodidact i have gained with that, whatever manroll the joint and let the enhanced emotion be the final jugdement, of this , whatever