Nat (Muslim traditions) in Pakistan

Nat (Muslim traditions)
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Isudas  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source:  People Group data: Omid. Map geography: UNESCO / GMI. Map Design: Joshua Project.
People Name: Nat (Muslim traditions)
Country: Pakistan
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 30,000
World Population: 199,600
Primary Language: Saraiki
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: New Testament
Online Audio NT: Yes
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: South Asia Muslim - other
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Nat or Nut peoples name is derived from the Sanskrit word nata which means 'dancer '. They are a traditional occupational caste known for dancing and singing. The Nat have a generally lower caste status or in some states of India they are a Scheduled Caste. The Nat Muslim can be found in north India by the names Nar, Naitak or Natak, though a large majority of the Nat are Hindus.

What Are Their Lives Like?

As traditional dancers and acrobats that are often semi-nomadic, the Nat Muslims can still be found in acrobatic events and as singers, dancers or unskilled laborers. Men and women are known to sing and play the flute or dholak. Tattooing is common for women especially on the forehead. The Nat Muslims of Nepal speak Bhojpuri and Nepali. The Nat follow Sunni Muslim traditions and are non-vegetarian. They can be given in child marriages and nuclear families can be more common than extended families among them. The Nat Muslims tend to have a very low literacy rate.

What Are Their Beliefs?

About 25% of Nat are Muslims. Like most of Pakistan, they are part of the majority Sunni branch of Islam. Muslims throughout South Asia have blended true Islam with pre-Islamic beliefs that resemble those of the Hindus.

What Are Their Needs?

It is possible that the Nat Muslim in the lower castes would be open to the gospel but very few have ever tried and even fewer have worked with the Nat Muslim of Pakistan. Small business development and micro loans could likely be a big encouragement to this entrepreneurial people group.

Prayer Points

Pray for the Nat culture to be renewed and enhanced by a work of the Holy Spirit and shaped into a God-centered and God-honoring mold.
Pray for the Holy Spirit to move among Nat family and community leaders to seek his face and enjoy his blessings.
Pray for the Lord to thrust out workers who will be compelled to nurture a Disciple Making Movement among the Nat people.
Pray that soon the Nat people will have faith that will lead them to live honorable lives that will draw others to the savior.

Text Source:   Joshua Project