irtually all of life is based on the Nepalese religious dogmas and regulations. Officially, Nepal is a Hindu country, but in practice the local religion is a complex syncretic cult that is based on Hinduism and Buddhism, with a vast pantheon of Tantric deities, each of which is believed to have influence on human life. Therefore, located throughout the monasteries and stupas are essential in the life of Nepalese – here he is sure spends some part of his life are concentrated here, and the spiritual life of the country. The whole life of ordinary Nepalese constructed on the basis of a huge number of religious and moral dogmas, with which compliance is simply unthinkable for a foreigner. But when dealing with local people to not get in trouble, you should at least do not violate the open local traditions, and small sins are forgiven condescending foreigner.
Nepalis are very friendly and quite unsophisticated people. Long-term isolation of the country has helped to keep the best features of the local ethnic group in its original form. However, the mass invasion of tourists and climbers in the late XX century, as well as the emigration of large numbers of Tibetans in the Tibet Autonomous China, brought here before a lot of unseen items from the "achievements of civilization," and ending with the appearance of a broad class of merchants. The system behavior and social relations in Nepalese society has changed quite weak, and the local etiquette is still markedly different from most neighboring countries.
A characteristic feature of Nepalese is their amazing humility in all situations. However, they are extremely curious and love to talk – so that's a dangerous mix. Therefore, to talk with local residents will have no difficulty, many of them understand English well, but that to achieve the required information will not be easy. Ideally, every conversation with a local resident must begin with a long introductory exchange of courtesies, and to say, or rather to ask, it will first Nepalese, and his questions will relate to family, working and companion of the country. And for the most part, if the case does not apply to some services and money, these issues will be a bit naive, but interest in the other person – sincere. The ratio of number of tourists to the condescending, but always friendly.
A common form of greeting in Nepal – folded palms cupped, podnosimye-to-face (usually the forehead – in the case of extreme respect, or to the chin – in everyday life). Accompanied by a gesture with the word "namaste" or, in case of appeal to the distinguished man, "Namaskar". Men usually shake hands with women is taken to use the "namaste." Primarily made to greet the eldest or the most respected man. When referring to someone else, should be added to the name of a polite ending "-ji" or the generic term of polite attention "hadzhur." It is not recommended to exercise vigorously to express surprise and emotion, the public manifestation of courtesies between men and women are also not accepted (same-sex totally forbidden).
Nepalis are accustomed to call his brothers and sisters, almost all members of the community, so the same applies to friends and even strangers, in whose number reach and foreigners. So often, instead of greeting, you can hear the appeal such as "brother" or "sister", but in relation to elderly people, or just well deserved – the "father" or "mother." This is a common standard, so do not be surprised if such an appeal will hear about the tourist, although it is possible that this will be followed by a shallow begging ("I will pray for you, Krishna"), and stalking offer their "services." You can often find a few zapanibratskoe relation to a stranger ("Hey, brother!"), But this is a local tradition.
The system of gestures in Nepal is also quite distinctive – the agreement is expressed with a nod of the head and shrugging his shoulders. 'No' is denoted by swinging his head to the side, often with the Nepalese lowered look. To beckon a waiter or servant, stretched out his hand palm down and fingers. A nod means "yes." But some European gestures, like spreading your thumb up with clenched fist, it might seem indecent here. As a gesture of surrender to the hands or touch the body of the offended person and then touching his hand to his head.
In everyday life, Nepalese observe many religious and moral tenets. You can not step over people lying, or through his legs, as well as to demonstrate to others their sole or allow another person pereshagivanie through them. Stepping on someone's outstretched legs, too, is considered insulting. Even to touch someone else's feet should not be, as well as to touch someone with your foot (or rather – shoes.) Do not touch the head of Nepalese and iron on the head with children – on the sacred canons of the local part of the body and touch it can only monks and parents. Going to the Nepalese house in a Hindu or a Buddhist temple, you should take off their shoes before entering, to enter into the house only with the permission of the owner. Do not throw garbage into the furnace or hearth (fireplace is considered a sacred symbol of home and family). With his left hand something to give or should not be accepted because the Nepalese use it for hygiene (toilet paper in the country does not have instead of using her jug with water) and are considered "unclean." Do not raise your voice in the conversation – is considered a sign of anger.
Take food and have only the right hand (the left you can keep the glass). Before and after eating a meal sure to rinse your hands and lips. Dishes that someone was already filled with food, is inviolable and is called "dzhutho" ("polluted" or "dirty"), to touch it there'll be nobody. So do not try something from someone else's dishes, using a common pitcher and even more – to offer something from your plate or glass to other members of the party. For the same reason you can not touch the food, and even exposed to the products on the market, to the vessels for drinking (the owner himself pour all the guests that will be asked, and without delay) and others' plates. Nepalis themselves, for example, drink from a jug or bowl without touching the edges of their lips. But in a bowl the guest of honor, to whom is usually always a foreigner, will always enclose without permission. Cutlery on the table are usually absent, decided to take the food right hand. However, in the house, and even more so – in the restaurant, they always have.
Traditional Nepalese food is usually very scarce and, despite the customary hospitality of these places, it is quite possible to bring to the table and put some food and drinks. In Nepal, usually eat twice a day, about 10.00-11.00 (until now in many places to find an outdoor cafe or restaurant is just unreal) and 19.00-20.00 in the morning only to drink a cup of tea. The meal usually takes place on the floor. Guests sat on mats with crossed legs (feet must be covered) and eaten with a common dish, standing on the floor.
In Nepal, using its own system of chronology and account of age. A newborn baby has the right age in one year (this is done Avoid indexer attempt at grasping the newborn to children's souls of spirits). A man who spent a year at the monastery, can consider himself under it to stay in the monastery. Therefore, the true age of residents is regularly confusion. Yes, and in everyday life Nepalis are very peculiar passage of time – punctuality is unknown, but "now" can mean "today". Therefore, we must advance to come to all meetings, do not wait for great precision of the local transport and patience in the case of service in restaurants or decision of any official matters (Nepalese bureaucracy, as elsewhere in the world, "accelerated" only under the influence of material interest in the outcome the case).
Buddhist stupas and other religious structures to circumvent the clockwise direction on the left. When visiting a temple recommend giving alms ("baksheesh"), and its size is not important, and the largest possible number of people benefited. Here, however, should observe moderation (promoting beggars – not the most rewarding job in the world, even more so – in Nepal). But cash donations to the temple will be accepted with sincere gratitude. Here, the walls of temples, usually swarming all sorts of souvenir vendors and services. Repulsed from them is difficult, but necessary – for "swallowed the bait," a European will run a crowd gomonyaschih and something people asking for or offering that is often simply frustrate all hopes of peace to meet sight.
Do not make the territory of any temples leather products (often referred to them, even shoes). Do not touch the believer or the offerings made by them to the gods. Women should not touch the monks. Do not wash with water, which flows into the water mill prayer. Many Hindu temples are closed to foreigners.
Photographing inside the museums and temples is prohibited. Also, care should be taken to approach the issue of filming local residents and their homes (often this question is very simple proposal to solve a certain amount, and you can bargain). The special situation of "sadhus" wandering hermits, usually Shiva worshipers. They gather around the temples and tourist areas, especially posing for photographers. Once they have completely given up wealth and roam the world in search of truth. Their lives are completely dependent on others, and donations for them – the only way of survival.
During the tour is recommended to use any clothing covering the body more. Shorts and even pants (jeans) in women are caused strong condemnation. Nepalis themselves never open up the legs, and men, even in hot weather, do not expose the torso. And the more inappropriate exposure of the feet or other body parts in a public place, such as bathing or sunbathing.