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The Republic of Ingushetia

Religious views of Ingush people

Религиозные воззрения ингушей
Комитет Республики Ингушетия по туризму

Large part of the spiritual culture occupied the Ingush religious views, which was variety. The earliest forms of religion are: totemism, animism, the funeral cult and magic.

Spirit animal of Ingush were: wolf, deer, bear and others. Animistic conceptions associated with the spirits of nature and the elements, including: Khinana (Mather of water), Darzanana (Mather of blizzard), Mikhanana (Mather of winds), Mekhanana (Mather of the Country) and others. With early religious views associated veneration of mountains, rocks, stones, trees and lakes. People think that the deities lived there. To communicate with them erected stone sanctuary.

Ingush pantheon of pagan deities had high level of evolution. In the minds of the people it represented as a hierarchy, where deities according to their value in the lives of the people took some steps. At the head of this hierarchy was – Dyala (supreme god), Sela – god of thunder and lightning, Tusholi – a fertility goddess, Gal-Erda – aristaeus, Elta – protector of hunters, Eshtar – god of death, Moldzi-Erda – god of war. For each of these deities were erected one or more sanctuaries, where were organized public prayers with sacrifices.

The special place in the history of religious holds Christianity that penetrates to the Ingush first from Georgia (Xll - Xlll centuries and XVll centuries), And later Russia (XVlll - XlX centuries). In Assinovskaya basin were placed three Christian temple Thaba-Erda, Albi-Erda and T1argam-Erda. Early Christian burial place of this period have been found in the villages of Pamet, Lyazhgi, Metskkhal, Shuang and others. The Christianity did not solidify among the Ingush people. The reasons for its decline are the stability of pagan beliefs, and the termination of the missionary activity of Georgia, due to the the invasion of the Tatars.

At the same time with Christianity penetrated into the territory of Ingushetia from Chechnya and Dagestan Islam, which were earlier in the plain than in the mountains. The sources of the process of Islamization are early Islamic cemeteries, written historical evidence and some ethnographic data. Islam entrenched in Ingushetia in the XIX century.

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