The Culture of Sindh
The Culture of Sindh ( سنڌي سڀيتا ) has its roots in the Indus Valley Civilization. Sindh has been shaped by the geography of the largely desert region, the natural resources it had available and the continuous foreign influences. The Indus or Sindhu River that passes through the land, and the Arabian Sea (that defines its borders) also supported the sea-faring traditions among the local people. The local climate also reflects why the Sindhis have the language, folklore, traditions, customs and lifestyle that are so different from the neighbouring regions.
The roots of Sindhi culture and civilization go back to the distant past. Archaeological researches during 19th and 20th centuries showed the roots of social life, religion and culture of the people of the Sindh: their agricultural practices, traditional arts and crafts, customs and tradition and other parts of social life, going back to a ripe and mature Indus valley civilization of the third millennium B.C. Recent researches have traced the Indus valley civilization to even earlier ancestry.
Archaeological discoveries sometimes help to unfold the certain latent aspects of a specificculture. The excavations of Mohenjo-daro have unfolded the city life of a civilization of people with values, a distinct identity and culture. Therefore, the first definition of the Sindhi culture emanates from that over the 7000 year old Indus Valley Civilization. This is the pre-Aryan period, about 3,000 years B.C., when the urban civilization in Sindh was at its peak.
In Sir Mortimer Wheeler's book, Civilization of the Indus Valley and Beyond, it is said that; "Civilization, in a minimum sense of the term, is the art of living in towns, with all that the condition implies in respect of social skills and disciplines." When people speak of Sindhi civilization, they have to concern themselves, mainly with the material and concrete side of human habitation of which Sindhi culture is the only essence called the superstructure.[original research?] The present day Sindh, along with the Northern part of the Indus Valley Civilization (around 3000 to 2500 B.C.) is located on its urban civilization.
Ranikot Fort is also a landmark of the Indus valley civilization. It is the world's largest fort, with walls extending to 20 km. It has been called a "second Wall of China", and it attracts many visitors.
Main article: Sindhi language
Sindhi language is an ancient language spoken in Pakistan and many other parts of the world. It is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by approximately 41 million people in Pakistan, and 12 million people in India; it is the second most spoken language of Pakistan, mostly spoken in the Sindh province. It is a recognized official language in Pakistan, and also an official language in India. Government of Pakistan issues National Identity Cards to its citizens only in two languages; Sindhi and Urdu.
Main article: Sindhi literature
Sindhi language is ancient and rich in literature. Its writers have contributed extensively in various forms of literature in both poetry and prose. Sindhi literature is very rich, and is one of the world's oldest literatures. The earliest reference to Sindhi literature is contained in the writings of Arab historians. It is established that Sindhi was the first Eastern language into the Quran, when it was translated in the eighth or ninth century A.D. There is evidence of Sindhi poets reciting their verses before the Muslim Caliphs in Baghdad. It is also recorded that treatises were written in Sindhi on astronomy, medicine and history during the eighth and ninth centuries.
Sindhi poetry is also prominent in Sindhi culture. Poetry of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. Sachal Sarmast is very famous amongst all of Pakistanis. Regional poets are Shaikh Ayaz, Ustaad Bhukhari, Ahmed Khan MAdhoosh. Many Sindhi poets are doing their poetry work continuously.
Main article: Sindhi music
Sindhi music has its own unique quality. It is performed in many different ways. Sufi music is performed at shrines, and other simple music is performed at studios and gatherings.
The ancient Sindhi civilization was the place, where the aesthetic utilization of leisure was freely indulged. There has been evidence, that the excavations of sites dating back to 3000 B.C. (all over Sindh) is also true, around 1200 years ago when Jaina Dakshiniya Chihna (778 A.D.) described the distinguished features of Sindhis in this way: "Elegant, with a lovely, soft and slow gait, they are fond of the art of Gandharvas (that is, songs, music and dancing) and full affection towards their country."
Sindhis celebrate Sindh Cultural day world wide on 6th December by wearing Ajrak & Sindhi Topi on that occasion.
Portrait of a Hindu girl from Sindh
Portrait of a Muslim girl from Sindh
The great Pakistani Sufi singer, Abida Parveen visited Oslo in September 2007
Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Junior in traditional Sindhi dress
Islam in Sindh
Tower at Mansura (Brahmanabad)
From the beginning of Muslim rule of the Sindh in 713 CE, the Muslim technocrats, bureaucrats, soldiers, traders, scientists, architects, teachers, theologians and Sufis travelled from the rest of the Muslim world to the Islamic Sultanate in Sindh, and settled there permanently. The majority of Sindhis converted to Islam by the Sufi mystics from Middle East and Central Asia. The Sindh became distinct in its identity and culture, and many contemporary writers in medieval age referred to Sindh and Hind as two different countries. The Sindhi culture flourished with a new stimulus from Islamic sources from Persia and Afghanistan. Many Baloch and Afghan tribes also settled in Sindh, adopting Sindhi culture.
There are many regional sports that are played in Sindh. Malakhiro(Malakhra) is one of the famous sports of Sindh. Other sports include Wanjh wati, Kodi Kodi, Beelarhoo, Thipai Rand, Notinn and Biloor.