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Oraon also called Kurukh, aboriginal people of the Chota Nagpur region in the state of Jharkhand, India. They call themselves Kurukh and speak a Dravidian language akin to Gondi and other tribal languages of central India. They once lived farther to the southwest on the Rohtas Plateau, but they were dislodged by other populations and migrated to Chota Nagpur, where they settled in the vicinity of Munda-speaking tribes.

Speakers of Oraon number about 1,900,000, but in urban areas, and particularly among Christians, many Oraon speak Hindi as their mother tongue. The tribe is divided into numerous clans associated with animal, plant, and mineral totems. Every village has a headman and a hereditary priest; a number of neighbouring villages constitute a confederation, the affairs of which are conducted by a representative council.

An important feature of the social life of a village is the bachelors' dormitory (dumkhuria) for unmarried males. The bachelors stay together in the dormitory, which is usually on the outskirts of the village. There is a separate house for the females. The dormitory institution serves in the socializing and training of the young.

The traditional religion of the Oraon comprises the cult of a supreme god, Dharmes, the worship of ancestors, and the propitiation of numerous tutelary deities and spirits. Hinduism has influenced the ritual and certain beliefs. Many Oraon, including the majority of the educated, have become Christians.

Faith is an ongoing search for a valid response to the Divine. The faith of a community keeps impelling its members to relate with God in concrete situations. Sarna tribals find many occasions to rely on His goodness and often express their trust. Their faith colors the whole of their life and activities. It is, however, in the sacrifice that their faith reaches its highest level of awareness, appears most explicit and is concentrated in its greatest intensity.

It was long thought that the Oraons and the other tribals were animists, people who attribute a living soul to plants, inanimate objects and natural phenomena. This view has been discarded although amateur anthropologists still sort it out in articles, in popular magazines. The Oraons are not nature worshipers. It would be an attitude completely alien to their religious system. The Oraons are, among the three main tribes (Munda, Oraon and Kharia) of Chotanagpur. They are the most eclectic people, borrowing freely from neighbouring cultures elements quite alien to their primitive tradition. The Oraon religious system has been largely influenced by the Munda and the Kharia religious traditions. The Oraon eclectic tendency is again manifest in their borrowing from Hindu beliefs. For instance, in their religious context, the Oraon call the sun as 'Biri Belas' (Sun King), when any superficial observer notices such thing, s/he might immediately conclude that the sun is one of their deities. But as a matter of fact, they consider the sun only as symbol of God's glorious power and brightness. No Oraon identifies the sun with Dharmes. In the same way, a stone, a pool of water, a river, a cluster of trees, a hillock, etc., are never considered as objects of worship, but only as the dwellings of the spirits to whom they turn to for help in their misfortunes. 

If we observe and investigate the Oraon religious practices, we find that Oraon religion has also given place to environmental features like in some other religions. These features are considered as the residence of spirits and are focal of ritual worship. Such common features in Oraon religion are the sacred grove, some trees, a mountain, a hill, a river, a tank, a well and a stone. The symbolic light, fire, sacred color, direction, position, sound number, time and motion are also involved in Oraon religion .

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