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Naga Nationalism’s Dilemma over Meanings, Politics and Religion

By Elija Chara

When ‘Naga’ is discussed, it begins with the primordial cosmology and then to colonial politics and armed conflict with India, by a romanticised desperate tribal group, for a modern state. Apart from this, there is limited focus to understand the Nagas’ national political philosophies and methodologies. The paper examines the theological interpretation of Naga nationalism. It first defines the features of the Naga nation, patriotism, nationalism and state, and then explores the history of national movement to locate the ideological discourses and conflicts that transformed to the origination of the Naga theo-political theme – ‘Nagalim for Christ’. At the heart of the examination is the Nagas patriotic psychology, national and spiritual dilemma, that attempts to bring about reconciliation among nationalism, armed conflict, political ideologies, theology and modernism, which is largely misinterpreted by outsiders. The positives and negatives of mixing nationalism and religion are critically examined to question the Nagas’ being on self-determination, at the same time attempt is made to understand if Naga nationalism’s onto-theological nature is a reconciliation, or escapade or for notification, or a forced consciousness.

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