Saora tribes are the inhabitants of the district of Ganjam and they are found in great numbers in this area. Regarding the origin of these Saora tribes, a myth is popular amongst the locales.In fact numerous anthropologists have traced that there is a mentioning about the Saora tribes even in the great epic of Ramayana
. It has been written that Savari, a Saora woman whom Lord Rama
and Laxman met while moving about in the Dandaka forests in search of Sita
. Just like many of the tribes of the whole of the region, these Saora tribes too have been able to maintain their originality in tact over all these years. Dance, festivals, music, rites and rituals bear the traces of their ancient culture and ethnicity.
The Saora tribes are adept in art, paintings and craft. Their well known paintings which are fascinated among the people of the India, Saora paintings, are initiated by this tribal group residing in Orissa
. Pictures of mundane life of the Saoras are the themes of the paintings. They use trees, tribal people, and animals as their motifs for the paintings. Sometimes they use the sequences from Sambalpuri dance. They draw these motifs in geometrical shapes on Tussar silks
. Sometimes, they use these kind of motifs are also used on the walls of their houses.
The Saora paintings are interlinked with the religious belief of this tribal community. For this reason, they think that this kind of paintings in the walls is symbols of luck and fortune. The tribal group also believes in evil spirits and worships them to stave off the demons and spirits.
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