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Title: Supernatural Beliefs and Practices Among Agriculturalists of Punjab in Crop Growing and Livestock Activities: Analytical Study
Authors: Ali, Hamid
Keywords: Social Sciences
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: University of the Punjab, Lahore
Abstract: This study aims to explore the types of supernatural beliefs and practices prevailing among rural Punjabi agriculturalists in the activities of crop growing and livestock management. Additionally, the research attempts to understand the cultural meanings that are associated with supernatural beliefs and practice among rural agriculturalists in growth of crops and raising of their animals. The study also examines how the uncertainties of weather and climate conditions reinforce the supernatural beliefs and the use of supernatural practices. One of the objectives of conducting this study was to find out the changes in supernatural beliefs and practices among rural agriculturalists with the passage of time and the factors responsible for these changes. For achieving these objectives, the researcher used qualitative research methodology based on philosophical foundations of interpretivism in social sciences. The purposive sampling technique was primarily used for selecting the study participants. Furthermore, the semi-structured interview guide was employed as a tool for collecting subjective data from the research participants. Data was collected from both the male and the female participants. The primary data collected from the research participants was analyzed using thematic analysis technique and findings were presented in both predefined and emergent themes and sub themes. The study found that the supernatural beliefs and practices exist among the rural agriculturalists in Punjab in both crop growing and livestock management. Predominantly, two types ofsupernatural beliefs and practices were found to be existing among the rural agriculturalists i.e. traditional and religious. Traditional supernatural beliefs and practices are based on the ancient cultural traditions that are believed to increase productively of the crops and the animals. The study found how the folk wisdom and proverbs existing among rural people in Punjab signify these supernatural beliefs and practices. On the other hand, religious supernatural practices are mainly based on religious beliefs such as taveez dhaga, dam darood, zakat and ushr, and visiting shrines and peers. As far as crop growing is concerned, the supernatural beliefs and practices are prevalent in form of seed blessing, prevention and treatment of diseases, and in overcoming evil eye. Supernatural practices are also prevalent for saving crops from wild animals. On the other hand, supernatural beliefs and practices can be traced in prevention and treatment of physical diseases and treatment of infertility and sexual dysfunction in animals. Furthermore, the supernatural beliefs and practices are traceable for repelling the evil eye in animals. The study found that the existence of supernatural beliefs and practices varies in different age groups of the rural agriculturalists in Punjab. While the older farmers were more likely to practice the traditional supernatural practices, middle age rural agriculturalists were found to be inclined towards the socio-economic supernatural practices. On the other hand, younger and educated rural agriculturalists were technology oriented in both crop growing and in raising of their animals. Implications of this study are diverse in policy making and academic spheres. This is one of the rare academic studies conducted on the existence of supernatural beliefs and practices among rural agriculturalists in crop growing and raising of their animals in Punjab.
Gov't Doc #: 26979
Appears in Collections:PhD Thesis of All Public / Private Sector Universities / DAIs.

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