Sarlamkai – Mizo traditional dance performed at Teachers’ Day Celebration

Sarlamkai is an impressive dance originating from the Pawi and Mara communities in the southern part of Mizoram. The Lushais referred to it as ‘Rallu Lam’. In older days when the different tribes were constantly at war with each other, a ceremony to deride the vanquished beheaded skull of the enemy was usually held by the victor. This ceremony is performed to ensure that the vanquished soul remains a slave to the victor even when the latter also dies.

The derision ceremony usually lasts for 5(five) days. The first 2 (two) days is spent in merry-making, singing alongside drinks and a non-vegetarian feast. On the third day a pig is slaughtered and he victor paints his whole body with the animal’s blood, which he only washes off on the evening of the fourth day or on the morning of the fifth day. During this 5(five) days period, the victor is not to sleep with any women. life.

If he does so, the vanquished soul is believed to be infuriated and cause upon the victor, a permanent disability inAny person who brings about an occasion for such a ceremony is highly regarded and respected by the people, the king as well as his elders.Therefore, every adult strives with all his or her capability to be such a hero. The courage and bravery of such heroes is a great consolation for the people when faced with any external aggression. It is during this ceremony that the ‘Sarlamkai’ dance is performed. As is obvious, it is a warrior dance performed to celebrate a victory in war. Songs are not sung; only gongs or cymbals or drums are used for making beats. In the dance, boys and girls standing in alternate position, dance in circles. They generally wear colorful dresses while the leader is dressed as a warrior. Reference.


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