Ksenia Kardonova, Traditional Medicine and Rituals
Kalmyk Cultural Heritage Documentation Project, University of Cambridge
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Terbish, B. (2018). Ksenia Kardonova, Traditional Medicine and Rituals [Video file]. https://doi.org/10.17863/CAM.42874
Sometimes small children have fever or they cry without any reason. The elders say that a child was frightened of something. To cure from a fright, people perform a ritual of removing fear. It is done as follows: parents take the child in their arms and cover the child’s head with a white cloth. At that time the lead is melted. A bowl with cold water is held over the child’s head and the hot lead is quickly poured into the water. The lead takes the form of the cause of fear. If a child has an evil eye, nine matches are lit and moved around the child’s body. Then the burnt matches are thrown into a cup with water, if matches drown then it is definitely an evil eye. Then the child’s face is washed with the water from the cup, then the child spits three times in the remaining water, which is then poured outside in the easterly direction. People did this. I do not know other methods of curing. There was also a ritual of prolonging one’s life. If there was no possibility to go to a temple then this special ritual would be carried out at home. Ulankin Sandhzi himself, a gelyung, told us so, especially for women. This ritual is conducted as follows: one needs to cut nails from feet and hands, cut off some hair and bury all this in a place where people do not walk. It can be close to the root of a tree or under the fence. This is the ritual of prolonging one’s life. As for traditional medicine, for high temperature Kalmyks consume kimr. Consuming kimr was similar to fasting. Kimr was made of milk and water, people drank it until the temperature subsided. Another medicine is shirgyamr: one litre of water should be evaporated to half a litre. Probably, sodium was produced by boiling the water.
Rituals, fear, water, lead, life prolongation
Sponsored by Arcadia Fund, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin
This record's DOI: https://doi.org/10.17863/CAM.42874