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Zurgan Lidzhieva, about the worship of the masters

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Terbish, Baasanjav 


Zurgan talks about the rituals of gazr us tyaklgn (worship of land and water) and gal tyalgn (fire worship): The ritual of gazr us tyaklgn (worship of land and water) takes place in early spring. People bring with them butter, milk, tea, sweets, as well as statues of Buddhas and rosaries in order to ‘revitalise’ objects. Statues and rosaries can be ‘revitalised’ both at temples and during outdoor rituals, as long as these objects are exposed to prayers. During a ritual, people walk around the fire and toss offerings into it, including sweets, sugar, tea, milk, and vodka. This is done for the deity of fire. This ritual is done so that it rains, snows, the crops grow well, livestock multiplies, as well as for peace and happiness. This ritual is performed in a clean and high place where the grass grows well. People toss white coins onto the ground, put butter and food into the fire, and a monk reads prayers. Gal tyalgn should be performed by men only.



Ritual, fire, water, land

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Kalmyk Cultural Heritage Documentation Project, University of Cambridge

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Sponsored by Arcadia Fund, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin