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Bulyash Chumudova, about a ritual to purify one's house

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Terbish, Baasanjav 


Bulyash talks about a ritual to cleanse one’s place of habitation: Recently we have cleaned and purified our house and courtyard. We invited a monk, set a fire in the courtyard, and sprinkled into it butter and other offerings, including incense and milk. There are many rituals around, and each requires special prayers to be chanted. You tell the monk which ritual you want, and he reads the appropriate prayers. During the ritual of cleaning one’s house, the monk enters each room and reads prayers. He burns incense, tosses rice and yellow and white coins onto the floor. We follow the monk and also pray. He can also read prayers outside the house. This ritual is also prescribed for those who are struck by misfortunes. When I was a child, we performed similar rituals. After moving into our summer camp, we were visited by monks from the nearby temple who read prayers and cleansed the place. We uttered well wishes for the new place. In the past people migrated twice a year. In April with the appearance of grass, people moved into their summer camps, a place with abundant grass and water. In October, when it gets cold and starts snowing, people moved into their winter camps. I myself was born in a nomadic yurt.



Ritual, cleansing

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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