Types of Ghosts in Assamese culture

By ScaryPen · Oct 3, 2007 · ·
  1. Having been a tireless listener of ghost stories, I have begged, bribed and blackmailed people into telling me scary tales since I was old enough to know what a story was and my reward was the most strange tales, unique to Assam.

    For those who might not know, Assam is one of the 'Seven Sister States' of north eastern India and has an interesting collection of folklore concerning ghosts.

    Of course these might differ slightly from region to region but the following are the most common and well known types of ghosts and creatures that are
    found in the stories.

    1) Bura Dangoria(the old one)
    A holy spirit dressed in white clothes and a white turban, sometimes seen on a white horse who guards Namghars, the community places of worship where the sacred Bhagvat Gita is kept.

    2) Baak
    A malevolent ugly creature that sometimes kills a person and takes on the corpse' s appearance.Often said to be found near isolated ponds and lakes.

    3)Ghoda Paak
    Has the hooves of a horse, but is otherwise human. Some stories show it as helpful, while others call it so deadly that you die when it looks at you.

    4)Bira (Poltergeist)
    Like all poltergeists in the rest of the world. Usually said to be set lose on a family by an enemy.

    5)Ghost in the bamboo grove
    This one is supposed to bend down a bamboo on your way and if you try to go over it, it'll snap back the bamboo and kill you.

    6) Jokhini
    A female demon like creature that often tries to lure males and kill them.

    7) Bordoisila(the storm goddess)
    She's the storm in April who throws a tantrum because she has to return to her husband's house after visiting her mother for the Assamese new year which is around that time. :)

    8) Puwali Bhoot(tiny ghosts)
    These are mischiveous ghosts the size of small chilren who steal rice and sweets from the kitchen :D

    There are the usual ghosts too,that possess ,haunt and and spook out people in general.
    Oh well, these are all I can remember now. Will put up more if I remember.


  1. Kheper
    This quote took me back to Manitou Springs when my mother was telling me about my two grandfathers. My first grandfather(mother's side) was a pilot. He was flying somewhere—and shame on me for not remembering where—but I clearly remember it was over a body of water. His equipment started to fail and he was lost in a thick scud. He said there was a clear pocket in the fog, and as he peered down to familiarize himself with the area, he saw an island. I'm not sure if he was delusional, but he claimed to have seen pterosaurs flying over the shores.

    My other grandfather(father's side) was living in Ireland when he claimed to have heard a banshee scream. The next morning he woke to the news of his neighbor being murdered. If you're not familiar with the banshee lore, it was said that the house it screamed outside of, someone inside would die.

    Yeah, my family is filled with nut jobs.

    By the way, the Bira reminds me of the Gypsy ghost called "mulo"(means "dead person"). Instead of being enemy driven, however, it kills its own family. It was believed that if the possessions of a deceased loved one were not destroyed by the family, they would return as a mulo and have revenge. Mua ha ha ha! >:D
      ScaryPen likes this.
  2. mustafamusty
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