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Into the Hearts and Homes of the Dard people of Ladakh



The Dard people of Ladakh are a minority group.  Their lifstyle is very different from the other groups in Ladakh yet this difference is  highly respected in the very inclusive society of Ladakh.  Nestled amidst the cold Himalayas the people of Ladakh have warm welcoming hearts. And it is to experience this that I was invited to the homes of a Dard family.

I feasted on the hot tea and biscuits, served along with the visual feast of ethnic costumes and jewelry!  Absolutely stunning adornments and clothing! But only half as stunning as their very unique culture. A few pictures below of the breakfast tea with my hosts. (April 2013)








Shining spirits, shining smiles!  I hope to have the good fortune to host these wonderful people at my home soon.


July 2013

12 comments on “Into the Hearts and Homes of the Dard people of Ladakh

  1. Pingback: INDEX | Articles on Culture | Wovensouls Journal

  2. Sonam Yangjor
    March 28, 2014

    Could i post these articles of my valley on my facebook page ” The Aryan Vallley “?

  3. wovensouls
    March 28, 2014

    Yes – please go ahead and share it. Without the love of all your people there, I would not have had such a fantastic time! So thank you for letting me into your lives.

  4. wovensouls
    March 28, 2014

    Do send me a link to the page too!

  5. Pingback: INDEX | Articles on Culture | Journal of Art & Culture

  6. Antonio Carlos
    October 1, 2014

    I could not contain my emotion … Simply fantastic!
    Only 5000 people … My God! In this modern hell we live in this ancient culture can disappear at any time! (Get a warm hug from someone who, at this hour of the morning (2:18am), read your post from Brazil. God bless you).

  7. wovensouls
    October 2, 2014

    God bless you too!

  8. Eileen
    February 12, 2015

    BEAUTIFUL. When I learned about them I was in love, then I found out we have ancestors from ‘a small concealed tribe in Ladakh’ – so then I translated a name on a document we got the name “Beautiful Daughter” in Classical Tibetan, Brokkat and Brogpa. So, it seems people should think of them as ‘real modern people’

  9. Jana
    July 6, 2015

    Do you think it’s ethical to invite them over at Europe/America? Wouldn’t this deepen their alienation of their own culture and religion and make them crave for the materialistic culture and goods of the west? Isn’ it better to contribute with the money for the tickets and their expenses to build a cultural center in their village, to do something more to protect their culture? Is such cultural exchange healthy for traditional endangered tribes?

  10. wovensouls
    July 6, 2015

    Hello Jana,
    I agree with the basic thinking behind your comment that there should be nothing done to endanger the culture and instead, everything should be done to preserve their culture.
    But the reality is that everyone IS already “exposed” – since TV is already within their lives with channels that show enough about alien cultures.
    So the complete shielding of their minds is not possible.
    Your counterpoint then would be ‘why expose them more than they are already’.
    I agree.
    But there is also this other objective of enriching the lives of these people who I am now close to. And just as I travel to Turkey / New Zealand and am enriched by these alien experiences, I would like them to be enriched too.
    And maybe through such travel and extended interactions with me (or with you, since we both believe in conserving traditional culture) their own conviction about their own culture might get stronger.
    For a robust solution to this issue lies not in ‘do not offer choice’ but in ‘having a choice and choosing the traditional ways’.

    end note
    1. the invitation was for Goa in India – and we are all still Indian so it is not THAT alien. But I know that this is not relevant to the point you were making.
    2. the greatest advantage of the alien world is the ‘low cost’ advantage arising out of mass production. So economics come into play and that factor results in the preference of cheap t-shirts, shoes etc over other traditional materials that cost weeks of effort. And so this tsunami of change that affects every aspect of daily life is unstoppable – even with cultural centres and initiatives. Sad but true.

  11. Pingback: Aryan Diaries | The Art Blog by WOVENSOULS.COM

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