Introduction / History
Most Salat are Hindus but there are some Muslims who converted to Islam during the Mogul period.
What Are Their Lives Like?
The name “Salat” means stone. The traditional occupation of the Salat is masonry and stone cutting. They build Hindu temples, Muslim mosques and other structures.
In Hindu society, the Salat are given the low status of Shudra or even Dalit, one outside the caste system.
The primary language of the Pakistani Salat is Sindhi. Many resources are available in Sindhi including a whole Bible, the JESUS Film and radio programs. Since many Salat are unable to read and write the goods news will have to presented to them in oral or visual forms.
The Salat people live in the western Indian state of Gujarati. A smaller population lives in the Sindh province of southeast Pakistan.
Most Salat men are cutters and sellers of stone and bricks by trade. Others have taken advantage of the educational system and become teachers, contractors, government workers and business owners. In recent times the Salat have taken on other occupations including agriculture, factory work and construction jobs. Many Salat young people are leaving rural areas and moving to cities searching for better educational and economic opportunities. Salat women care for children and sometimes work as domestics. Children frequently quit school after a few years to help their parents make a living.
What Are Their Beliefs?
Hindu Salat marry within their group, often first cousins. Marriage to one spouse is the norm. Families tend to have a large number of children. In rural areas, life expectancy is low and children mortality is high. Sons inherit property and take care of elderly parents. Elders rule villages and make judicial decisions.
The Salat people practice Hinduism, the ancient religion of South Asia. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. Hindus believe that by performing rituals and good works that they will attain moksha or freedom from the endless cycle of birth, death and rebirth. They visit Hindu temples and offer prayers, food, flowers, and incense to their gods in hopes of gaining protection and benefits. They do not have a personal or familial relationship with their gods like Christians or Jews. There are many forms of Hinduism, each with its own deities and beliefs.
What Are Their Needs?
The main yearly holidays of the Salat people are Holi, the festival of colors and the start of spring / Diwali, the festival of lights / Navratri, the celebration of autumn / and Rama Navami, Rama's birthday.
The Hindu Salat of Pakistan have huge needs. Rural Salat need access to modern medicine and clean water. They need good schools and teachers to educate their children. Rural lack electricity and indoor plumbing. Most of all the Salat of Pakistan need to hear and respond to the gospel of Jesus Christ. He alone can forgive their sin and give them hope for the future.
Pray for a "Book of Acts" type of disciple making movement to Christ among the Salat community in this decade.
Pray for the Salat people to understand and embrace that Jesus wants to bless their families.
Ask God to send workers to the Hindu Salat.
Pray that Salat parents are able to provide adequately for their children.
Scripture Prayers for the Salat (Hindu traditions) in Pakistan.