Why are Nepali one of the happiest people in the world?
Nepal, the home of brave Gurkhas, the land of Mount Everest, is a small country located between China and India. With almost 30 million of the population, Nepal is an underdeveloped country struggling its way out of poverty after a decade long civilwar. Nepal is paving its way through a hard road of squabbling politicians and high unemployment with thousands of youths leaving every day to Middle East countries for labor jobs.
It surfaces a lot of reasons for Nepali to be unhappy, but in fact, we are one of the happiest people in the world. It might intrigue you, despite every valid reason Nepalis are living a satisfied life. Well, being a Nepali myself, I will help put some light on why we live our life with no worries.
Our Culture is our guide
In every country, it is the culture that paves our way to who we become eventually. Nepal is an incredible mix of hundreds of culture and customs, and these cultures have bestowed us with such practices that shine our way. Our country is an ancient one, and these practices are rooted for thousands of years, and we literally live by them.
Living with your parents even when you are independent and supporting them for life; letting your child grow with grandparents, so they receive their wisdom and advice: well, these practices binds us together and makes our life more meaningful.
Another important part of the culture is festivals. There are hundreds of festivals celebrated for different reasons, and most of them speak about respect and reverence, bond and brotherhood and forget and forgiveness. Our culture teaches us to embrace even our enemy. With such an enlightening guidance, our culture has taught us to be a better person.
We stick together
Nepal mostly comprises of a large family, where different generations live together under the same roof. When children in the family grow up, become independent or even get married, we still live with our father and mother. It is one of the main reason why Nepali remain happy.
When time goes rough, or we are left with nothing, we at least have a family with us supporting and sticking together. No matter, how much a child grows, the best haven for them is in the arms of their parents, who brought them in this world and nurtured them to who they are now. When you are with your family, you always carry confidence because you know, they have got your back and it makes you feel peace and happy inside.
We believe in non-violence
Perhaps the fact that Gautam Buddha being born in Nepal is one reason why Nepal goes by the policy of non-violence, but whichever may be the reason; violence is not a way for Nepal.
Nepal is home to different religious groups with 61 ethnic clans. We look different, we speak a different language, we wear different clothes, we celebrate different festivals, we worship different gods, and despite every difference in our culture and tradition, Nepal is such a country where not a single drop of blood has been shed in the name of religion. We know we are different, but that’s what makes us unique and beautiful.
We are hardworking
Nepal is a country where over 25% of the population is living below the poverty line, and the per capita income is just 1,004 USD. You can imagine the amount of struggle an average Nepali goes through to earn his/her bread.
With such a saddening figure of income, there is no option than working hard. Every morning we wake up with a hope to make today better than yesterday, and this very reason for hope makes us hardworking and happy. We know that grieving over what is beyond our reach isn’t going to make our life any better. Life is hard, and you better learn to enjoy it.
We are satisfied with what we have
Satisfaction is the greatest reason that makes us happy. Our government is disappointing; we are in a huge brain-drain; development is walking in a snail’s pace, and yet, here we are happy with what we have.
It is quite sarcastic, but it is a fact we can’t deny. It's not like Nepal hasn’t gone through a political movement for change. In the 1990s and early 2000, Nepal witnessed some of the biggest Peoples Movement that took thousands of lives and shattered millions of hope. Guess we have learned our lessons and now, we are happy with what we have.
We love working
Work is a great source of satisfaction, but only if we love our work. There are over 20% of people that reside in urban areas, and the rest of the population still lives in villages engaging in agricultural works. Despite the modernization, people in Nepal prefer to live by old rules no matter the struggle it has.
It is something we will never choose, but those people really love their life and work as a farmer. Every day they wake-up and walk up to their fields to watch their harvest. They grow almost everything by themselves. It is the satisfaction from their work, from what they do that makes Nepali happy. They know it costs hard work, but that is what they choose.
We are happy to have each other
In Nepal, you will experience a great deal of brotherhood among friends, among neighbors and even with strangers. Yes, of course, the difference between class and religion exist, but that what makes our bond special. We participate in each other's joy and give our support when times come.
Let me tell you a real incident that happened few years ago. My father and our neighbor uncle had this huge heated argument over land area, which is a typical Nepali problem. We completely stopped talking with each other’s family. Now, every Dashain (greatest festival in Nepal), we used to go to uncle’s house to put tika and have their blessing and his children used to do the same. Festivals are all about forgoing our ego, so despite the anger, my father sent my sister and me to his house and so did he.
It is the ultimate feeling of brotherhood that justifies our life even more and makes us feel happy and fulfilled.
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