Zokhuo in China

Zokhuo
Photo Source:  Copyrighted © 2022
Operation China, Asia Harvest  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source:  Joshua Project / Global Mapping International
People Name: Zokhuo
Country: China
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 17,000
World Population: 17,000
Primary Language: Zokhuo
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Christian Adherents: 0.90 %
Evangelicals: 0.60 %
Scripture: Translation Needed
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: No
Audio Recordings: No
People Cluster: Tibeto-Burman, other
Affinity Bloc: Tibetan-Himalayan Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Zokhuo are a distinct ethnic group. They are proud of their unique ethnicity and history as a people and do not see themselves to be the same as any other people group. Despite these facts, the Chinese authorities have placed the Zokhuo under the large and all-embracing Yi nationality which contains 120 different groups. Jamin Pelkey notes, "The Zokhuo consider themselves different from the Poluo around them, and certainly do not consider themselves to be Yi." Some of the alternate names for the Zokhuo include Niuweiba (Cowtail), Changpu (Long Pu) and Baipu (White Pu). These are probably names given to them by other ethnic groups and are not used by the Zokhuo themselves.

According to Zokhuo oral history, they originally lived in the Dali area of west central Yunnan and migrated to Wenshan around the time of the Nanzhao Kingdom (possibly about AD 900).

What Are Their Lives Like?

Chinese anthropologist Lu Jinyu visited the Zokhuo extensively in the early 1990s. He studied Zokhuo culture in all 16 of their villages and published a 30-page paper in Chinese. Lu found that the Zokhuo culture and language are thriving. The Zokhuo practice a number of special customs and festivals throughout the year, when they dress up in their traditional attire.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Zokhuo are polytheistic animists. Their worldview is shaped by their belief in the spirit world. The Zokhuo live in simple houses near streams or some other water source. Traditionally, they do not dig wells, for fear of "striking the veins of the dragon" that they believe lives in the water underneath the earth.

The Zokhuo have no known Christians in their midst. Their close-knit communities and strong desire to maintain their culture possibly mean they will view Christianity as a threat to their way of life. To date, few Zokhuo have ever heard of Jesus Christ.

What Are Their Needs?

The Zokhuo people need to accept the warm embrace of the only Savior so they can enjoy spiritually meaningful lives.

Prayer Points

Pray for the authority of Christ to bind hindering spiritual forces to lead them from darkness to light.

Pray for signs and wonders to happen among them and for great breakthroughs with a rapid multiplication of disciples and house churches.

Pray for bold workers who are driven by the love of the Holy Spirit to go to them.

Pray for an unstoppable movement to Christ among them.

Text Source:   Joshua Project