Tibet is comprised of 41 different ethnic races of people. Some of the groups are Tibetan, Menpa, Luopa, Han Chinese, Hui, Sherpa, Deng and a small amount of Nepali, Lama and Tamang people. Each group has its own distinct language and different variations of culture and lifestyle. Most of the people in Tibet live in the southern and western parts of the country. The current population of Tibet is 2,626,300 of which 2,427,200 are Tibetan, making up 92.2 percent of the population. China has a strict family planning policy, this policy though practiced by the Han Chinese, is not widely practiced by the Tibetans mainly as it does not go hand in hand with Buddhist theology, this account for Tibet’s high population.
As people, Tibetans are very forthright and hardy. They comprise mainly of farmers living in small rural villages. The harsh conditions of Tibet’s climate make them sturdy and hardy people able to tolerate extreme weather conditions and a poor diet. Another major group in Tibet is the nomads. These people make a living by herding yaks and sheep. They spend the vast majority of the year living in the high pastures tending their animals. The nomads live in tents and rely heavily on yaks, they use yak’s wool for their tents and clothing, make butter and tea from the milk and eat and sell the meat. Tibetans that live in the cities are generally traders, businessmen, and industry workers. The Tibetans are musical people who like to sing and dance, a lot of their history and culture is recorded in song and dance. They are also renowned for their skills in painting, carving and handy craft. There is five main provinces covering the Tibetan population, U-Tsang, Kham, Chamdo, and Amdo. In each province, a different dialect of Tibetan is spoken.
Menpa- The Menpa mainly inhabit the southern part of Tibet and earn their living through farming, hunting, and handy crafts. A unique feature of the Menpa’s is that every adult male carries a broadsword around his waist as a symbol of his manhood. Menpa men and women are known to be fond of snuff and alcohol.
Luopa- Inhabiting the southeastern region of Tibet, the Luopa people are primarily farmers. They are famous for their skills in handicraft especially their hand platted bamboo products which are exquisite. Like the Menpa’s, the Luopa people only have an oral language, not a written one. They have their own religion, though a few of them are Buddhist
Sherpa-Living in Nyalam, Shigatse, and Dingkye, they are Buddhist people. In Tibetan, Sherpa means oriental. These people are chiefly border traders and farmers.
Deng- the deng has a relatively small population in Tibet. Living in the southeast they believe only in ghosts and not gods. Again they have their own language, but it is oral only and not written. They record events by making knots in ropes or putting marks on pieces of wood.
Han Chinese- the Hans are the second largest population in Tibet. Mostly they originate from mainland China and were sent into the region as technicians during the revolution. Their lifestyle conflicts with that of the Tibetan peoples.