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Sangadzhi Kononov, Buddhism in Kalmykia

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Churyumov, Anton 
Kovaeva, Bair 


Sangadzhi says that people sometimes have problems that can be resolved neither by modern medicine nor by science, but by Kalmyk rituals. Despite the deportation of the Kalmyk nation and the decades-long repression of Buddhism in the Soviet period, many former Kalmyk monks managed to keep their faith, rituals and tradition. Kalmyk rituals are related to the natural elements, including water, fire, earth and air. In Kalmykia Buddhism has organically blended with local culture and rituals. Sangadzhi finds it wrong when some Kalmyks call for the revival of shamanism at the expense of Buddhism. He also points out that there are people who criticize the Tibetan monks who work in the temples in Kalmykia. Sangadzhi reminds us that these foreign monks serve the local people and read prayers for the development of Kalmykia.



Buddhism, socialism, suppression, shamanism, revival

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