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Power, charisma, and ritual curing in a Tibetan community in India Calkowski, Marcia 1985

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POWER, CHARISMA, AND RITUAL CURING IN A TIBETAN COMMUNITY IN INDIA By Marcia  Calkowski  B.A., R i c e U n i v e r s i t y , 1970 M.A., U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia, 1974  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY  in  THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Anthropology  and S o c i o l o g y )  We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d  standard  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA November 1985 (c)  Marcia Calkowski, 1985  In p r e s e n t i n g  t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of  requirements f o r an advanced degree a t the  the  University  of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree t h a t the L i b r a r y s h a l l make it  f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r reference  and  study.  I  further  agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e copying of t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may  be granted by the head o f  department o r by h i s o r her r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s .  my  It i s  understood t h a t copying or p u b l i c a t i o n of t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l gain  s h a l l not be allowed without my  permission.  The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3  written  Abstract  T h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n i s concerned w i t h the ways i n which living  Tibetans  i n Dharmsala, Northern I n d i a , r e a c t t o events such as i l l n e s s ,  p e r s o n a l d i s t r e s s , and m i s f o r t u n e , disturbances  p e r c e i v e such events as  t o a g i v e n s o c i a l and moral o r d e r and a s evidence o f  " s p i r i t attack".  To r e - e s t a b l i s h the o r d e r , t h e c o n t e x t  from a c o n c e r n w i t h an a f f l i c t e d political  when they  i s s u e s and f i n a l l y  moves/widens  i n d i v i d u a l t o i n c l u d e more g e n e r a l  f o c u s e s on the l e g i t i m a t i o n o f a u t h o r i t y .  Dharmsala T i b e t a n s l i v e i n a h i e r a r c h i c a l s o c i e t y and s u b s c r i b e to  a h i e r a r c h i c a l cosmos.  The i d e o l o g y p l a c e s r e s p o n s i b i l i t y upon  humans f o r a l i g n i n g t h i s h i e r a r c h y and p r e s c r i b e s the l e g i t i m a t e means by which the h i e r a r c h y may be ascended.  Two e f f i c i e n t causes o f  i l l n e s s e s r e s u l t i n s p i r i t a t t a c k : (1) t h e f i r s t a t t r i b u t e s s p i r i t a t t a c k t o human v i o l a t i o n o f h i e r a r c h i c a l t e n e t s ; (2) t h e second, t o the i l l e g i t i m a t e s t a t u s ambitions ritual  of e v i l s p i r i t s .  cure a d d r e s s e s t h e r e s o l u t i o n o f s t a t u s  Successful r i t u a l denoting  cures are appreciated  The l o g i c o f t h e  ambiguities.  i n terms o f two idioms  two a s p e c t s o f c h a r i s m a t i c a u t h o r i t y .  When the s p i r i t  attack  r e s u l t s from human v i o l a t i o n o f h i e r a r c h i c a l t e n e t s , t h e p a t i e n t ' s cure i s c o n t i n g e n t (rlung-rta). spirits  upon h i s o r her u n s y s t e m a t i c a l l y a c q u i r e d  power  When t h e second e f f i c i e n t cause o b t a i n s and e v i l  a r e r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t h e a t t a c k , t h e p a t i e n t ' s cure depends  upon t h e outcome o f a d u e l between an e x o r c i s t and t h e s p i r i t ( s ) , and the s u c c e s s f u l cure i s d e s c r i b e d i n terms o f s y s t e m a t i c a l l y a c q u i r e d  ii  power  (dbang). These idioms serve not only t o l e g i t i m a t e s t a t u s i n T i b e t a n  s o c i e t y , but a l s o t o r a t i o n a l i z e h i e r a r c h i c a l a s c e n t .  In a d d i t i o n t o  r i t u a l c u r i n g , the idioms a r e employed i n a s s e s s i n g t h e outcomes o f events such as s p o r t s , gambling, and weather-making. o v e r l a p moral a m b i g u i t i e s  emerge.  Where the idioms  The two idioms a r e d i s c e r n i b l e i n  much o f T i b e t a n h i s t o r y where they  f o c u s upon the l e g i t i m a t i o n of  succession to charismatic o f f i c e .  The i d i o m o f u n s y s t e m a t i c a l l y  a c q u i r e d power appears t o predominate i n the p r e s e n t  iii  refugee  context.  TABLE OF CONTENTS  Abstract List  i i  of Tables  ix  L i s t of Figures  x  L i s t o f Maps  xi  Acknowledgements  x i i  Guide t o T i b e t a n Orthography  xiii  Preface  xiv  CHAPTER I : INTRODUCTION  1  Methodology Used i n t h e Study and Some F i e l d C o n s i d e r a t i o n s  1  Statement o f t h e Problem Organization  7  o f Content  16  NOTES  18  CHAPTER I I : THE SETTING  19  Introduction  19  The T e r r a i n  19  The C o s m o l o g i c a l The T i b e t a n s  Interface  ..25  o f Dharmsala  27  The S o c i a l E p i c e n t e r s o f Dharmsala  33  The I n d i a n I n t e r f a c e  36  The Western I n t e r f a c e  38  Further Explorations of the Western-Tibetan I n t e r f a c e  45 iv  Cosmology  51  Some Major C o n s i d e r a t i o n s i n T i b e t a n  Buddhist  Religious Structure  58  NOTES  63  CHAPTER I I I : RITUAL APPEASEMENT: ALIGNING THE  COSMIC HIERARCHY  65  The Lha  67  The K l u  77  The  85  I n t e n t i o n a l i t y of the G i f t  Conclusion  88  NOTES  90  CHAPTER IV: THE AMBIVALENCE OF HIERARCHICAL ASCENT  91  The  H i e r a r c h y o f Demons  97  The  Demon as a "Bad F i t "  100  The  TIPA Ghost  102  The  Problem o f Dbang  107  The  Dangers o f Dbang  117  The  C o n t r a c t o r ' s Exorcism  119  The  Shugs-ldan Rgyal-po  122  Dbang C o n t e s t s  128  The  129  S t o r y o f T a r a Lee Wang  Conclusion CHAPTER V: TRICKS, TRAPS, AND  133 TRANSFORMATIONS:  TIBETAN STRATEGIES OF EXORCISM  135  TRICKS  137  The  Appeal o f C o n s t r u c t i o n s  v  137  Refracting  the E v i l Eye  139  Change o f S t a t u s . .  140  The Ransom R i t u a l  142  Analysis.  147  TRAPS  148  TRANSFORMATIONS  150  A Lay A p p l i c a t i o n  152  T r a d i t i o n Under A t t a c k  153  A C u l t u r a l Exorcism  157  Conclusion  162  NOTES  164  CHAPTER V I : A DUR-SRI EXORCISM AT THE TIBETAN CHILDREN'S VILLAGE  165  INSTILLING HIERARCHICAL PRECEPTS  169  THE DESTRUCTION OF CHALLENGERS  177  The S t o r y o f Rudra  177  The L i n g - g a  192  The Cemetery B u r i a l  193  Analysis.  195  THE FOURTH DAY - APPEASING THE KLU and SA-BDAG  203  THE FIFTH DAY - EXORCISING GT0R-NAG-MG0-GSUM  205  Analysis  208  Conclusion  211  CHAPTER V I I : RLUNG-RTA - UNCERTAINTY AS HIERARCHICAL VALIDATION vi  213  R l u n g - r t a as a P r o t e c t i o n A g a i n s t S p i r i t A t t a c k Gambling  219 ......221  Sports  222  Divination  224  A R i t u a l of Soul R e t r i e v a l  225  1.  Preparations  226  2.  L u r i n g t h e Soul and T e s t i n g I t s Return  227  3.  Securing the B l e s s i n g s of Long L i f e  229  Analysis  229  1.  The Lasso  2.  Sheep  229  3.  Turquoise  232  4.  Stones,  233  A Marriage The  and T r a p p i n g  the Soul  229  D i c e , and Gyang  of Souls  234  D a l a i Lama and t h e Scapegoat  243  Conclusion.  247  NOTES  250  CHAPTER V I I I : OF A MONSTROUS BIRTH AND MIRACULOUS RETURNS: LEGITIMATING RULE IN TIBETAN HISTORY  251  Introduction  ................251  D i v i n e Kings  253  T i b e t D e c e n t r a l i z e s and L i n e a g e The  Gurus Emerge  P a t r o n - P r i e s t R e l a t i o n s h i p and t h e R i s e of t h e Sa-skya H i e r a r c h s vii  257  260  The  Sa-skya P a t t e r n o f L e g i t i m a t i o n  263  Family Hegemonies  266  The Emergence o f the D a l a i Lamas....  267  The R i s e o f Regents and Court  272  Intrigue  The T h i r t e e n t h D a l a i Lama  277  Regent R i v a l r y  280  The  Fourteenth  D a l a i Lama and t h e  Chinese I n v a s i o n  285  Conclusion  286  NOTES  292  CHAPTER IX: CONCLUSION The  Efficient  293  Causes o f S p i r i t  Attack  and Concomitant Cures  293  Baraka, R l u n g - r t a , Dbang, and Mana  297  The  Permutations o f T i b e t a n C h a r i s m a t i c O f f i c e  299  E x i l e and the C o n t i n u i t y o f C h a r i s m a t i c O f f i c e  303  The M o r a l Order and Dharmsala T i b e t a n s  306  Conclusion.  ,  311  BIBLIOGRAPHY...  313  APPENDIX: GLOSSARY OF TIBETAN TERMS  320  >  viii  LIST OF TABLES  C h r o n o l o g i c a l T a b l e o f T i b e t a n R u l e r s , Buddhist Gurus, and Major C h a r i s m a t i c O f f i c e s  ix  Lineage 282  LIST OF FIGURES  Fig.  1, Diagram o f T i b e t a n Cosmology  56  F i g . 2, Diagram o f E x o r c i s m S i t e , TCV Home No. 10  167  Fig.  3, The A l t a r  168  F i g . 4, Tshogs O f f e r i n g  174  F i g . 5, The B l a c k T e n t  186  F i g . 6, I n t e r i o r of the B l a c k T e n t  186  F i g . 7, D i v i n a t i o n  189  Cauldron  x  *  LIST OF MAPS .  I. Map  of I n d i a L o c a t i n g Dharmsala  I I . Map  I I I . Map  •  o f Upper Dharmsala  2  24  of E t h n i c T i b e t  29  xi  Acknowledgements  I t would be i m p o s s i b l e f o r me to acknowledge p e r s o n a l l y a l l of the people i n I n d i a whose f r i e n d s h i p , good humour, timely wisdom, and a s s i s t a n c e were i n v a l u a b l e to me as an i n d i v i d u a l and as an anthropological fieldworker. A s o c i e t y of r e f u g e e s , such as that o f the T i b e t a n s i n I n d i a , i s a f r o n t i e r s o c i e t y armed w i t h a r i c h t r a d i t i o n but f a c i n g an u n c e r t a i n f u t u r e . T h i s s o c i e t y has produced i n d i v i d u a l s , and a t t r a c t e d i n d i v i d u a l s ( I n d i a n and Western), who have o f t e n p r o v i d e d me w i t h e x c e p t i o n a l i n s i g h t s i n t o the i n t e r p l a y o f dilemmas i n T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s o c i e t y . I would l i k e to express my g r a t i t u d e to the M i n i s t r y o f E d u c a t i o n of the Government o f I n d i a , Mr. M a l i k of the S h a s t r i Indo-Catiadian I n s t i t u t e , Gyatso T s e r i n g and K. Dhondup o f the L i b r a r y o f T i b e t a n Works and A r c h i v e s , Jigme Tsarong of the T i b e t a n A s t r o - M e d i c a l C e n t e r , T a s h i Wangdui, P r o f e s s o r D o c t o r Lokesh Chandra, Sherab Gyatso, Sonam T a s h i , Frank Fernandez of the U n i t e d S t a t e s C o n s u l a t e , New D e l h i , T s e r i n g Wangyal, and the T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e of P e r f o r m i n g A r t s . I would f u r t h e r l i k e to acknowledge the graduate f e l l o w s h i p s I r e c e i v e d from the U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia, and the g e n e r o s i t y of Dr. A l a n and Pamela Sandstrom i n a l l o w i n g me to use t h e i r word-processor.  xii  Guide To T i b e t a n Orthography  To t h e r e a d e r u n f a m i l i a r w i t h T i b e t a n , t h e c l u s t e r s o f consonants to be found i n any t r a n s l i t e r a t i o n o f T i b e t a n pose a seemingly insurmountable c h a l l e n g e . The orthography I have used throughout t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n i s a system developed by T u r r e l l W y l i e (1959). I have i n s e r t e d a g l o s s a r y o f t h e T i b e t a n terms I use i n t h e appendix, but I w i l l c i t e a few p r o n u n c i a t i o n r u l e s a s a g u i d e t o t h e r e a d e r : (1) I n T i b e t a n , t h e r e a r e e i g h t p r e f i x l e t t e r s which a r e n o t pronounced i f they immediately preceed a consonant - "g", "d", "b", "m", " r " , " s " , "1", and ' " a " ( t h e more common t r a n s l i t e r a t i o n f o r t h e l a t t e r i s a s i n g l e a p o s t r o p h e ) . Thus, r g y a l - p o i s pronounced " g y a l - p o " ; bde i s pronounced "de". When t h e p r e f i x l e t t e r s " d " and "b" o c c u r i n c o n j u n c t i o n , a s , f o r example, i n t h e word dbang, "db" i s pronounced "w". (2) When "1" immediately f o l l o w s a p r e f i x consonant, t h e l a t t e r i s not pronounced; hence, k l u becomes " l u " . (3) There a r e two f i n a l l e t t e r s , " d " and " s " , which a r e n o t pronounced; hence, 'Aphags-pa i s pronounced "Phag-pa", and med i s pronounced "me". The f i n a l l e t t e r s "g", " r " , and "1" a r e sometimes not pronounced; hence, ama-lags would be pronounced "ama-la", and g s o l becomes " s o " . (4) S e v e r a l i n t e r e s t i n g consonant combinations i n c l u d e : " k h r i " (pronounced as " t r h i " ) ; " b r " (pronounced as " d r " ) ; " g r " (pronounced a s " d r " ) ; " z l a " (pronounced as " d a " ) ; " s r " (pronounced a s " s " ) ; "phya" (pronounced a s " c h " ) ; "mya" (pronounced a s "nya"); "py" (pronounced a s " j " ) ; " k r " (pronounced a s " t r " ) ; and " z h " (pronounced as " s h " ) . (5) F i n a l l y , " t h " and "ph" i n d i c a t e an a s p i r a t e d " t " and "p" r e s p e c t i v e l y ; " c " i s pronounced a s " j " , and "ng" i s pronounced a s an initial letter.  xiii  Preface  In New D e l h i , on January 2, 1978, more than two hundred greeted scarves, black.  Tibetans  the a r r i v a l o f P r e s i d e n t C a r t e r ' s motorcade by waving black, the t r a d i t i o n a l T i b e t a n white g r e e t i n g s c a r f (kha-btags) dyed By t h i s symbolic  gesture,  the T i b e t a n s  defined  their protest  against exclusion of Tibet i n President Carter's global human r i g h t s p o l i c y and f o r p r e v e n t i n g the D a l a i Lama from v i s i t i n g the United States...The T i b e t a n s were a l s o c a r r y i n g banners s a y i n g 'What about human r i g h t s i n T i b e t ? Are T i b e t a n s n o t human? ( T i b e t a n Review 1978:8).  From the o v e r t emphasis placed by P r e s i d e n t C a r t e r on 'human r i g h t s ' , many T i b e t a n refugees  i n I n d i a hoped t h a t the cause o f T i b e t a n  independence and the s i t u a t i o n o f T i b e t a n s officially by  recognized  i n T i b e t would be  by h i s a d m i n i s t r a t i o n , and t h a t the f i r s t  visit  the D a l a i Lama to the U n i t e d S t a t e s would be r e a l i z e d . President Carter's  i n i t i a l announcement o f the 'human r i g h t s '  p o l i c y ' had even earned him h i s own T i b e t a n nickname i n I n d i a - Jigme Khatag ('Ajig-med Kha-btags), which means " F e a r l e s s H o n o r i f i c S c a r f " . For T i b e t a n s ,  the name h e l d a deeper meaning.  The " h o n o r i f i c s c a r f "  or " h o n o r i f i c g r e e t i n g s c a r f " i s a p e r v a s i v e symbol o f s o c i a l  ties i n  T i b e t a n c u l t u r e , the mutual o b l i g a t i o n s and r e c i p r o c a l exchanges which mark any ongoing s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p . Tibetans  i f i t i s n o t presented  A gift  i s not a g i f t f o r  w i t h a white s c a r f , which i s u s u a l l y  xiv  p l a c e d about the r e c i p i e n t ' s neck.  L a y e r s o f such s c a r v e s mantle  b r i d e and groom(s) a t a T i b e t a n wedding. ceremonial  occasions  such as  command r e s p e c t .  on i t s j o u r n e y  to the burning ghat.  or o t h e r h i g h lama i s immediately lama about the donor's neck.  Scarves a r e o f f e r e d on  the T i b e t a n New  and numina who  Year to persons,  places,  F u r t h e r , such s c a r v e s drape a  T h i s dramatic and  impresses  reflects  the o f f e r i n g of the s c a r f .  corpse  A s c a r f o f f e r e d to the D a l a i Lama  r e t u r n e d , wrapped by  the g i f t  the  the  receiving  immediate r e t u r n o f  upon the donor t h a t the b l e s s i n g from the lama  I n the T i b e t a n view, P r e s i d e n t G a r t e r had  clearly violated  o b l i g a t i o n s a t t e n d a n t upon h i s very h i g h p o s i t i o n . i n a u s p i c i o u s c o l o r f o r T i b e t a n s , who  the  S i n c e b l a c k i s an  find a black scarf  to be  an  a p p r o p r i a t e " g i f t " o n l y f o r c e r t a i n r e c a l c i t r a n t sub-human numina. President Garter's r e f u s a l served  to transform him  T i b e t a n s c o u l d appeal  to acknowledge " T i b e t " i n a p u b l i c manner  from someone T i b e t a n s c o u l d t r u s t and  f o r h e l p (as T i b e t a n s would appeal  into a sub-sentient i r a s c i b l e creature. was  The  to whom  to the  o f f e r of a b l a c k  gods),  scarf  thereby an a c t m i r r o r i n g what T i b e t a n ' s construed as P r e s i d e n t  C a r t e r ' s v i o l a t i o n of the moral o r d e r . demonstration  with a f i n a l  The T i b e t a n s concluded  their  plea:  I f the T i b e t a n s do not get Your E x c e l l e n c y ' s support i t w i l l show c o n c l u s i v e l y t h a t the f a t e of a l l s m a l l n a t i o n s of the world depends on power p o l i t i c s , and t h a t i n o r d e r to p r e s e r v e t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l r i g h t s and n a t i o n a l e n t i t y , they should u n s c r u p u l o u s l y , without the l e a s t regard to e t h i c s o r m o r a l i t y , play up the super powers one a g a i n s t another ( T i b e t a n Review 1978:8).  xv  The  s t r a t e g y o f the above a p p e a l i s the s t r a t e g y o f a T i b e t a n  exorcism.  The q u e s t i o n s  r a i s e d by the a p p e a l i n c l u d e those which seek  to d e f i n e l e g i t i m a t e power and l e g i t i m a t e a u t h o r i t y , c r i t i c a l i s s u e s i n Tibetan refugee s o c i e t y .  Though a T i b e t a n e x o r c i s m or c u r i n g  appears t o be concerned w i t h  the problems o f an i n d i v i d u a l , the l o g i c  of the cure addresses the m a n i p u l a t i o n r i t u a l c u r i n g i n the wider p o l i t i c a l  o f power, and thereby  ritual  places  context.  In the c o u r s e o f my study o f such c u r i n g r i t u a l s i n a T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s o c i e t y , I found q u a n t i t a t i v e methods such as and  surveys t o be i m p o s s i b l e  t o implement.  chary o f p r o v i d i n g i n f o r m a t i o n  Refugees a r e n e c e s s a r i l y  they c o n s t r u e  themselves (as a r e other p o p u l a t i o n s  as p o t e n t i a l l y h a r m f u l t o  so c h a r y ) .  f e l l under the r u b r i c o f what a n t h r o p o l o g i s t s "participant observation"  census-gathering  Hence, my methodology  r e f e r t o as  and i n c l u d e d : i n f o r m a l i n t e r v i e w s ,  i n t e r v i e w s , language study, the t a k i n g o f l i f e h i s t o r i e s ,  structured  discourse  a n a l y s i s , s i t u a t i o n a l a n a l y s i s , the use o f documentary sources and translated  t e x t s , and a n a l y s i s of taped  My informants  interviews.  came from d i s p a r a t e p a r t s o f T i b e t , r e p r e s e n t e d the  f o l l o w e r s o f the f o u r s e c t s o f T i b e t a n Buddhism, i n c l u d e d members o f different  s o c i a l c l a s s e s and economic s t a n d i n g s ,  s i x - y e a r - o l d s to septuagenarians. interviewed  and ranged i n age from  The r e l i g i o u s s p e c i a l i s t s whom I  i n c l u d e d twenty Dge-liigs-pa lamas, two Sa-skya lamas, two  Bk'a-rgyud-pa lamas, the head of the Buddhist School  xvi  of D i a l e c t i c s ,  three  Rnying-ma-pa lamas, and f i v e Rnying-ma-pa cave m e d i t a t o r s .  I  i n t e r v i e w e d h i g h and low r a n k i n g T i b e t a n Government o f f i c i a l s , and the a d m i n i s t r a t o r s , t e a c h e r s , and students  o f the T i b e t a n  V i l l a g e and t h e T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e o f Performing T i b e t a n , Western, and A y u r v e d i c  Arts.  Children's  I consulted  p h y s i c i a n s and t h e i r p a t i e n t s , and  i n t e r v i e w e d merchants, h o t e l i e r s , r e s t a u r a n t e u r s ,  sweater  sellers,  c a r p e t weavers, c h i l d r e n , grandparents, chang ( b a r l e y beer) vendors, and  v i s i t i n g Tibetans  United  from the south  S t a t e s , and from T i b e t .  o f I n d i a , Europe, Canada, t h e  I conducted i n t e r v i e w s i n T i b e t a n and  i n E n g l i s h and r e l i e d upon a t r a n s l a t o r f o r i n - d e p t h  The  interviews.  r e a d i n g o f any a n t h r o p o l o g i c a l d i s s e r t a t i o n o r work  n e c e s s a r i l y poses the q u e s t i o n  "Who i s speaking?"  a b s t r a c t s from i n f o r m a t i o n gathered  The a n t h r o p o l o g i s t  as a p a r t i c i p a n t - o b s e r v e r and  c r e a t e s a c o n s t r u c t i o n o f t h e r e a l i t y h e l d by those whom he o r she has  s t u d i e d and w i t h whom he o r she has l i v e d .  This construction  by the a n t h r o p o l o g i s t e n t e r s i n t o t h e a c t o f d a t a - g a t h e r i n g it  enters into varying l e v e l s of a b s t r a c t i o n .  the a n t h r o p o l o g i c a l e n t e r p r i s e .  xvii  i t s e l f as  Such i s the nature o f  1  CHAPTER I  INTRODUCTION  T h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n i s concerned living  w i t h the ways i n which T i b e t a n s  i n Dharmsala, N o r t h e r n I n d i a , r e a c t to events  such as i l l n e s s ,  p e r s o n a l d i s t r e s s , and m i s f o r t u n e , when they p e r c e i v e such events as d i s t u r b a n c e s to a g i v e n s o c i a l and moral o r d e r o r e q u i l i b r i u m .  So as  to r e - e s t a b l i s h the o r d e r , t h e s e T i b e t a n s , who o f t e n t r e a t s o c i a l and moral d i s t u r b a n c e s as evidence o f " s p i r i t a t t a c k " , seek to l e g i t i m a t e authority  through r i t u a l c u r i n g .  Authority i s a t issue In Tibetan  r i t u a l c u r i n g , s i n c e the s e l e c t i o n o f the r i t u a l  to be  hinges upon the assignment o f moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y disturbance.  performed  f o r the  Moreover, the cure i t s e l f may be i n t e r p r e t e d as the  s u c c e s s f u l m a n i p u l a t i o n o f two idioms d e n o t i n g a s c r i b e d o r a c h i e v e d power, idioms w i t h which T i b e t a n s symbolize  two d i s t i n c t a s p e c t s o f  charismatic authority.  Methodology Used i n the Study and Some F i e l d C o n s i d e r a t i o n s  My f i e l d w o r k took p l a c e i n Dharmsala*', Himachal I n d i a between November 1978 and June 1981. D a l a i Lama, the T i b e t a n G o v e r n m e n t - i n - E x i l e , monasteries,  Pradesh,  The a r e a i s home to the several Tibetan  and about 8,000 T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s .  Many o f these  2  I. MAP OF INDIA LOCATING DHARMSALA  3 r e f u g e e s , who f o l l o w e d  the D a l a i Lama i n t o e x i l e  s i n g u l a r l y dramatic h i s t o r i e s .  During t h e i r  i n 1959-1961, have  flights  into e x i l e ,  most  dodged b u l l e t s and t r a v e r s e d d i f f i c u l t Himalayan mountain passes by night.  A number of r e f u g e e s were f o r c e d to leave spouses and c h i l d r e n  behind. In Dharmsala, one may come a c r o s s T i b e t a n s who have been  tortured 2  and imprisoned i n T i b e t by the Chinese f o r over twenty y e a r s . These T i b e t a n s were r e l e a s e d from p r i s o n i n 1980-81, and then permitted letters  to j o i n r e l a t i v e s  l i v i n g in India.  S i n c e no exchange of  o r v i s i t o r s between T i b e t a n s l i v i n g i n T i b e t and those l i v i n g  i n e x i l e was p o s s i b l e u n t i l knowledge of  the refugees i n I n d i a had no  the f a t e of r e l a t i v e s who had not been a b l e to escape and  had remained b e h i n d . initiation  1979,  of  The p e r i o d o f my f i e l d w o r k c o i n c i d e d w i t h  the o f f i c i a l exchange of l e t t e r s  i n e x i l e and t h e i r  relatives  in Tibet,  between T i b e t a n s  and o f " f a c t - f i n d i n g  the living  missions"  to T i b e t by o f f i c i a l d e l e g a t i o n s from the T i b e t a n G o v e r n m e n t - i n 3 Exile.  It  from T i b e t .  a l s o c o i n c i d e d w i t h a t r i c k l i n g of T i b e t a n v i s i t o r s Thus,  f o r the f i r s t  time i n over twenty y e a r s o f  exile,  T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala were a b l e to l e a r n something o f f a m i l y members heretofore  l o s t to them.  The new p r i v i l e g e s e n a b l i n g T i b e t a n s i n e x i l e to t r a v e l to T i b e t , and T i b e t a n s i n T i b e t to v i s i t I n d i a , have posed problems a p a r t from 4 the r e - s u r f a c i n g o f i n t r a - f a m i l i a l relatives few o f  anguish.  Although v i s i t s  from  i n T i b e t were e a g e r l y a n t i c i p a t e d by Dharmsala T i b e t a n s , a  the v i s i t o r s aroused s u s p i c i o n s  i n Dharmsala, s i n c e  economic c i r c u m s t a n c e s and o p i n i o n s d i d n o t match those of  their the  4 m a j o r i t y o f the o t h e r T i b e t a n s  permitted  For an a n t h r o p o l o g i s t a t t e m p t i n g circumstances, questions did  to v i s i t  to do f i e l d w o r k  relatives  i n India.  i n such  a pragmatic approach was e n t a i l e d .  I d i d n o t ask  about' the T i b e t a n Government o r about T i b e t a n p o l i t i c s .  n o t t r y to conduct household surveys.  I conducted  I  interviews  where I could and when p e o p l e had the time to t a l k to me. My  c o n v e r s a t i o n a l T i b e t a n s u f f i c e d me i n the bazaar, b u t n o t i n  the caves o f o l d e r m e d i t a t o r s Khams.  from the e a s t e r n T i b e t a n p r o v i n c e o f  I n t h i s I r e c e i v e d i n e s t i m a b l e a s s i s t a n c e from Sherab  Gyatso, whom I h i r e d I n h i s spare  time to t r a n s l a t e f o r me.  the k i n d o f f r i e n d / i n f o r m a n t whom any a n t h r o p o l o g i s t would  Sherab i s prize,  someone w i t h s o c i a l p e r c e p t i o n and w i t . During lodgings but  my s t a y i n Dharmsala I l i v e d  i n Tibetan hotels.  Such  d i d n o t f i t my i n i t i a l l y more romantic image o f f i e l d w o r k ,  they proved a s e n s i b l e c h o i c e .  no o t h e r p o s s i b i l i t y .  I n f a c t there was, i t turned  out,  When I f i r s t thought to f i n d a f a m i l y to lodge  w i t h , I c o n s u l t e d a T i b e t a n Government s e c u r i t y o f f i c e r . e n t h u s i a s t i c about such a c h o i c e s i n c e he c a u t i o n e d  He was n o t  t h a t i f I were to  l i v e w i t h a f a m i l y , I might u n i n t e n t i o n a l l y become embroiled  i n their  arguments, and t h a t my b e s t c h o i c e would be to remain i n a h o t e l . f u r t h e r advantage o f a h o t e l , p f c o u r s e ,  i s t h a t i t o f f e r s a semblance  of p r i v a c y u n a v a i l a b l e i n most o t h e r  p l a c e s , and people coming f o r  i n t e r v i e w s o r v i s i t s might f e e l on a  neutral'.'ground.  My  specific  several i l l n e s s to  r e s e a r c h i n t e r e s t was r i t u a l c u r i n g . episodes  A  I learned of  t h a t were r e l a t e d by my informants  the traumas produced by the T i b e t a n d i a s p o r a  itself.  directly  One s t r i k i n g  example o f such traumas was recounted  to me by one young man, who had  l i v e d w i t h h i s mother i n N e p a l f o r s e v e r a l y e a r s b e f o r e India.  H i s mother became q u i t e i l l i n Nepal, and v i s i t e d  h o s p i t a l i n Kathmandu. d o c t o r s , who claimed die.  they c o u l d do n o t h i n g  The f a m i l y l i v e d on a t h i r d  the t h i r d - f l o o r straight  a Western  T h e r e , she jumped about and spat a t the  on o c c a s i o n , had to r e s t r a i n  son  they came to  window.  floor  f o r h e r and expected h e r to  i n a house i n Kathmandu, and,  the woman p h y s i c a l l y  from l e a p i n g o u t o f  Whenever the young man's mother t r i e d  o u t the window, she would say t h a t she was going  (who was i n the room).  to meet h e r  The woman f i n a l l y began to speak i n the  v o i c e o f her s i s t e r , who had d i e d as the f a m i l y had escaped Tibet.  The s i s t e r ,  t h a t she had waited  speaking  through the woman, informed  on top of a mountain near the Sikkim  t h a t the f a m i l y had l e f t T i b e t without Tibetan  her.  from  her audience border, b u t  The f a m i l y v i s i t e d a  l a d y o r a c l e , who i n s t r u c t e d them as to which r e l i g i o u s  to perform.  to walk  The f a m i l y complied  with  rituals  the lady o r a c l e ' s  recommendations, and the mother became w e l l a g a i n w i t h i n a month. Another man f l e d gravely  ill.  to I n d i a w i t h h i s f a m i l y i n 1959, and became  He was a d v i s e d  his  f a m i l y and devote h i m s e l f  man  followed  illness  by a very h i g h r e i n c a r n a t e lama to l e a v e to a l i f e  o f m e d i t a t i o n and p r a y e r .  the lama's a d v i c e , and recovered  completely.  i n Dharmsala has n o t , however, been so c u r e d .  man who had r e s i g n e d h i m s e l f T i b e t , learned o f their  The  One r e c e n t  In this  case, a  to the death o f h i s w i f e and c h i l d r e n i n  existence  through the exchange o f l e t t e r s  between T i b e t and I n d i a begun i n 1979.  T h i s d i s c o v e r y has caused him  to withdraw from s o c i e t y , to e a t l e s s , and, i n the o p i n i o n o f h i s  6 co-workers,  to waste away.  The case of t h i s i n d i v i d u a l , however, i s  h i g h l y unusual i n T i b e t a n refugee s o c i e t y , s i n c e the man  h i m s e l f has  n o t sought a c u r e , nor has anyone been a b l e to persuade him  to do so.  The most d r a m a t i c response g i v e n by a few T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala to t h e i r e x i s t e n t i a l s i t u a t i o n as r e f u g e e s , a response which  was  i n t e r p r e t e d by T i b e t a n s as the r e s u l t o f s p i r i t a t t a c k , o c c u r r e d i n 1974.  T i b e t a n s had been f i g h t i n g a g u e r r i l l a war a g a i n s t the Chinese  i n T i b e t s i n c e 1950. established  By  the 1960's, T i b e t a n g u e r r i l l a bases had been  i n Mustang, Nepal, and  the C.I.A. was  c o n d u c t i n g advanced  t r a i n i n g c o u r s e s f o r some T i b e t a n s a t army bases i n C o l o r a d o . C.I.A. withdrew t h e i r support of these g u e r r i l l a s been v e r y s u b s t a n t i a l ) i n 1972,  and, under  (which had  The never  severe p r e s s u r e from China,  the Nepal Government took measures to e r a d i c a t e the g u e r r i l l a Finally,  i n 1974,  bases.  the l a s t g r e a t T i b e t a n g u e r r i l l a l e a d e r , G e n e r a l  Wangdu, was k i l l e d . ^  Upon l e a r n i n g o f t h i s f i n a l d i s s o l u t i o n o f  the T i b e t a n g u e r r i l l a s based  i n N e p a l , s e v e r a l T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala  (one p u r p o r t e d l y a c a b i n e t m i n i s t e r o f the T i b e t a n government) stabbed themselves, and one c o u p l e stabbed t h e i r baby. Government's r e a c t i o n to t h i s performance,  i n c i d e n t was  The T i b e t a n  to o r d e r the annual  from thence onward, o f a s b y i n - s r e g r i t u a l  i n Dharmsala.  S b y i n - s r e g means "a f i r e o f f e r i n g " ,  various r i t u a l  substances as an o f f e r i n g  the performance  of a sbyin-sreg r i t u a l ,  their  destruction.  the b u r n i n g o f  to a B u d d h i s t d e i t y .  Through  the d e i t y ' s a s s i s t a n c e may  invoked f o r p e a c e f u l or w r a t h f u l purposes. e v i l s p i r i t s were s a i d  f o r Tibetans  be  In t h i s instance, powerful  to have been a t work, and  the r i t u a l  addressed  7 The  above examples suggest  that r i t u a l c u r i n g provides T i b e t a n  refugees w i t h the means to address and r e s o l v e p e r s o n a l t r a g e d i e s e r u p t i n g from  their f l i g h t  into e x i l e .  I found, however, t h a t  i n c i d e n c e s o f s p i r i t attack, were r a r e l y a t t r i b u t e d causalities.  to such  R a t h e r , most case h i s t o r i e s of s p i r i t a t t a c k were  focused upon moral i s s u e s i n t r i n s i c  to T i b e t a n s o c i e t y .  Moreover,  p a t i e n t s d i d not n e c e s s a r i l y have to be p r e s e n t w h i l e they were b e i n g cured.  Once p a t i e n t s l e a r n e d o f ( o r were s a t i s f i e d w i t h )  diagnoses,  they f r e q u e n t l y l e f t  ritual specialists invariably  i t up  to cure them.  participated actively  the e v a l u a t i o n of the " c u r e s " .  their  to lamas (bla-mas) or other  Nonetheless, i n one  p a t i e n t s almost  phase o f the c u r i n g p r o c e s s  P a t i e n t s accomplished  t h i s by  -  weighing  c r i t e r i a which T i b e t a n s a p p l i e d to o t h e r s o c i a l d i s t u r b a n c e s - the i s s u e s of moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y and a u t h o r i t y .  Thus, w h i l e I  i n v e s t i g a t e d r i t u a l c u r i n g , I began to focus on the problem o f a u t h o r i t y i n Dharmsala T i b e t a n s o c i e t y .  Statement o f the Problem  T i b e t a n s possess a l i t e r a t e parallels  "great medical"  t r a d i t i o n which  the A y u r v e d i c and Chinese m e d i c a l systems.  which has gained world-wide i n t e r e s t , was T i b e t a n refugees and  i s p r a c t i c e d and  carried  and  into e x i l e  by  But T i b e t a n medicine  the o n l y h e a l t h - c a r e o p t i o n f o r T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s . choose diagnoses  tradition,  taught a t the T i b e t a n  A s t r o - M e d i c a l C e n t e r i n Dharmsala, I n d i a .  Dharmsala may  This  treatments  i s not  Those l i v i n g i n  from m u l t i p l e m e d i c a l  8 systems.  T i b e t a n s may v i s i t  who a d m i n i s t e r s p e n i c i l l i n  Ayurvedic  d o c t o r s , an " i n j e c t i o n "  shots w i l l y - n i l l y  doctor  t o a l l comers, a French  Western p h y s i c i a n who i s v e r s e d i n acupuncture and s t u d i e s T i b e t a n medicine,  the I n d i a n h o s p i t a l i n lower Dharmsala, or the Western  d o c t o r s a t Delek (Bde-legs)  H o s p i t a l , a s m a l l c l i n i c s e r v i n g the  community o f McLeod Ganj and the T i b e t a n C h i l d r e n ' s V i l l a g e . The medical  above, however, does not exhaust t h e p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r treatment  i n Dharmsala.  There a r e , f o r example, T i b e t a n  p a t i e n t s who opt f o r r i t u a l diagnoses  and c u r i n g from d i v i n e r s ,  o r a c l e s , and Buddhist  R i t u a l c u r i n g i s o f t e n sought by  practitioners.  p a t i e n t s who have a l r e a d y made t h e rounds o f t h e v a r i o u s a v a i l a b l e d o c t o r s and n o t been s a t i s f i e d  with t h e i r r e s u l t s .  Such p a t i e n t s  e i t h e r d i d not c o n s i d e r themselves t o be cured o r experienced recurrence of t h e i r i l l n e s s e s .  a  Moreover, many o f these p a t i e n t s  u s u a l l y account f o r t h e i r treatment  c h o i c e by drawing a t t e n t i o n t o the  f a c t t h a t r i t u a l c u r i n g was f o r them a " l a s t  resort".  Other T i b e t a n  p a t i e n t s who seek r i t u a l c u r i n g may have been diagnosed d o c t o r s as s u f f e r i n g from s p i r i t a t t a c k , an i l l n e s s  by T i b e t a n  which e s s e n t i a l l y  does n o t f a l l under the j u r i s d i c t i o n o f T i b e t a n medicine (no one i n Dharmsala so diagnosed  would c o n t i n u e T i b e t a n medical  treatment).  In a d d i t i o n , t h e r e a r e many T i b e t a n s whose immediate response t o illness  i s to consult d i v i n e r s or o r a c l e s , not doctors.  roughly  taxonomize the c h o i c e o f many o f these p a t i e n t s a c c o r d i n g t o  the f o l l o w i n g c r i t e r i a :  I could  (1) f o r s u p e r f i c i a l s k i n d i s e a s e s , r i n g worm,  wounds, or broken bones, T i b e t a n s choose t h e Western c l i n i c ; (2) f o r i n t e r n a l but not " l i f e - t h r e a t e n i n g " c o m p l a i n t s ,  they c o n s u l t T i b e t a n  9 m e d i c a l d o c t o r s ; (3) when o t h e r modes of treatment  proved  u n s a t i s f a c t o r y or p a t i e n t s "sensed" t h a t t h e i r i l l n e s s e s were r e l a t e d t o s u p e r n a t u r a l a t t a c k , they e n l i s t the a i d of r i t u a l c u r e r s ; and those s u f f e r e r s who  f e e l from the onset of t h e i r i l l n e s s e s t h a t they  were t o d i e might a v o i d d o c t o r s or c u r e r s a l t o g e t h e r , and i n s t e a d , the a d v i c e of lamas as t o how My  (4)  seek,  b e s t t o prepare f o r r e b i r t h .  i n v e s t i g a t i o n s r e s t e d w i t h the c h o i c e o f r i t u a l ,curing by  T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala.  I f such c u r i n g was  esteemed as a " l a s t  r e s o r t " , i t might a l s o s e r v e as a " s a f e t y v a l v e " i n t h a t i t was  a  treatment o p t i o n t h a t p r o v i d e d a p a t i e n t w i t h a meaning f o r i l l n e s s not c l e a r l y or s a t i s f a c t o r i l y a r t i c u l a t e d i n a l t e r n a t i v e m e d i c a l solutions.  In t h i s premise I f o l l o w Young (1976:5), who  people adhere t o t h e i r m e d i c a l t r a d i t i o n s because  suggests t h a t  these t r a d i t i o n s  prove t o be s u c c e s s f u l ways t o d e a l w i t h u n t e n a b l e e v e n t s , such as i l l n e s s , and these t r a d i t i o n s "perform an o n t o l o g i c a l r o l e  -  communicating and c o n f i r m i n g important i d e a s about the r e a l w o r l d . " > He c o g e n t l y argues t h a t i n Western s o c i e t y , m e d i c a l t r a d i t i o n s tend t o f a i l most s u f f e r e r s of "psychosomatic" d i s e a s e s , s i n c e these s u f f e r e r s a r e denied e x c u l p a t i o n .  They a r e not a b l e t o d i v e s t themselves o f  e t i o l o g i c a l r e s o n s i b i l i t y f o r t h e i r i l l n e s s e s nor are they a b l e t o f i n d a s a t i s f a c t o r y paradigm, paradigms,  w i t h i n the r e p e r t o i r e o f Western m e d i c a l  w i t h which they can l o c a t e themselves o n t o l o g i c a l l y  the meaning o f t h e i r i l l n e s s e s . however, psychosomatic  In many non-Western s o c i e t i e s ,  i l l n e s s e s do not e x i s t as a p a t i e n t or s u f f e r e r  w i l l e v e n t u a l l y f i n d what f o r him or her i s a s u i t a b l e paradigm.  We  through  must ask what such a paradigm  illness  o f f e r s a p a t i e n t or those  10 i n t i m a t e l y r e l a t e d to the p a t i e n t . Evans-Pritchard  (1937) t r a c e d t h e c o m p l e x i t i e s o f d u a l  causation  i n Zande e x p l a n a t i o n s o f d i s t u r b i n g phenomena such as i l l n e s s . Prolonged  i l l n e s s / or i l l n e s s which does n o t respond t o m e d i c a t i o n , i s  a t t r i b u t e d t o w i t c h c r a f t as w e l l as t o t h e " a c t i v i t y itself"  (1937:509).  determining  of the disease  W i t c h c r a f t , however, i s the key f a c t o r i n  whether or n o t t h e p a t i e n t r e c o v e r s .  Thus, e f f o r t s made  on b e h a l f o f someone s e r i o u s l y i l l a r e , f o r the most p a r t , d i r e c t e d t o c o n s u l t a t i o n s w i t h o r a c l e s and m a n i p u l a t i n g witchcraft.  measures t o c o u n t e r a c t the  Such d u a l c a u s a l i t y p r o v i d e s t h e Azande w i t h a f i e l d o f  p o s s i b i l i t i e s w i t h i n which they may manipulate t h e moral o r d e r , and c r e a t e f o r themselves s a t i s f a c t o r y e x p l a n a t i o n s o f t h e p r o b l e m a t i c . G l i c k (1967) proposed t h a t t h e i d e o l o g y o f i l l n e s s and c u r i n g i n a s o c i e t y may be p r e d i c t e d from a study o f those s e l e c t e d domains t h e s o c i e t y i n v e s t s w i t h power.  cultural  Kleinman (1980) extends  p r o p o s a l i n h i s d i s c u s s i o n o f competing c l i n i c a l r e a l i t i e s . 'clinical reality', social  r e a l i t y , " which i n c o r p o r a t e s i c k n e s s b e l i e f s ,  views o f c l i n i c a l r e a l i t y power impinging  treatment  and responses t o s i c k n e s s .  conflict,  When  then " t h e sources o f l e g i t i m a t i o n  upon the h e a l t h c a r e system w i l l e v e n t u a l l y  determine which view p r e v a i l s , which c l i n i c a l r e a l i t y (1980:44).  By  Kleinman r e f e r s t o " t h e h e a l t h - r e l a t e d a s p e c t s o f  e x p e c t a t i o n s , s i c k n e s s behaviour,  and  this  i s sanctioned"  Kleinman i l l u s t r a t e s h i s c o n t e n t i o n by c i t i n g ,  example, the m a r g i n a l  status given shamanistic  for  L  c u r e r s i n the People's  R e p u b l i c o f China and t h e emergence o f the peyote c u l t  as a c o r o l l a r y  of  But Kleinman  t h e change i n t r a d i t i o n a l  Navaho v a l u e s (1980:44).  11 e x t e r n a l i z e s t h e n o t i o n o f 'power' t o t h e p r o c e s s o f t h e c u r e and  itself,  thereby makes a s i g n i f i c a n t o m i s s i o n i n h i s endeavor t o a n a l y z e  the c u l t u r a l c o n s t r u c t i o n o f i l l n e s s . Most p r e c i s e l y , 'power', as i t e n t e r s i l l n e s s and c u r i n g  i n t o the ideology of  (or anywhere e l s e ) d e s c r i b e s a r e l a t i o n s h i p .  Power, f o r example, may r e f e r t o "command o v e r . . . a n o t h e r ' s actions...[and] 1957:115). and  command over e x i s t i n g b e n e f i t s o r r e s o u r c e s "  (Nadel  Turner (1967:356) r e c a s t s t h e o l d e q u a t i o n o f knowledge  power:  To r e s t o r e o r d e r , h e a l t h , o r peace t h e powers t h a t make f o r these must be brought i n t o p l a y by t h e c o r r e c t use and combination o f symbols, viewed as r e p o s i t o r i e s o f power as w e l l as semantic symbols: F o r Ndembu,...to 'know something', t o understand t h e meaning o f a symbol o r t h e use of a 'medicine', f o r example, i s t o i n c r e a s e i n 'power'.  Levi-Strauss  a p p l i e s a s i m i l a r e q u a t i o n i n h i s argument f o r t h e  e f f i c a c y o f symbols.  The Cuna shaman, i n r e l a t i n g a myth t o a woman  undergoing a d i f f i c u l t  labor, provides  h e r w i t h "an ordered and  i n t e l l i g i b l e form" f o r an " e x p e r i e n c e t h a t would o t h e r w i s e be c h a o t i c and  inexpressible."  The myth o f f e r s a " r e o r g a n i z a t i o n ,  d i r e c t i o n , o f t h e p r o c e s s t o which t h e s i c k woman i s (1967:193). organic  Levi-Strauss  transformation  i n a favorable  subjected"  f u r t h e r suggests t h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f an  stimulated  by t h e " s t r u c t u r a l r e o r g a n i z a t i o n "  of a p a t i e n t induced " t o l i v e o u t a myth" (1967:197). With Turner and L e v i - S t r a u s s , power t h e a b i l i t y transformations  then, we add t o t h e d e f i n i t i o n o f  to e f f e c t desired transformations.  include the a b i l i t y  These  t o i n f l u e n c e another o r change  12 another's  mind, t o t r a n s f o r m substance  energy, energy t o substance,  t o substance,  substance t o  o r r e l a t i o n s h i p t o r e l a t i o n s h i p , as would  o b t a i n i n a change i n s t a t u s .  A change o f s t a t u s n e c e s s a r i l y marks a  t r a n s f o r m a t i o n i n t h e q u a l i t i e s o f r e l a t i o n s h i p s e x i s t i n g between an i n d i v i d u a l and o t h e r s .  Turner  (1969) has shown t h i s t o be t h e case i n  h i s a n a l y s i s o f l i m i n a l i t y and communitas; B u r r i d g e  (1960),  i n his  a n a l y s i s o f m i l l e n a r i a n movements. The r e s o l u t i o n o f s t a t u s a m b i g u i t i e s i s e s s e n t i a l l y a t r a n s f o r m a t i v e p r o c e s s , and t h i s p r o c e s s has become p i v o t a l t o t h e study o f c u r i n g r i t u a l s .  Lewis (1971) h o l d s t h a t p o s s e s s i o n  a t t r a c t p a r t i c i p a n t s from t h e oppressed  and m a r g i n a l  cults  classes.  These  c u l t s s e r v e t h e i r members by e n a b l i n g them t o a t t a i n a s t a t u s and fulfill  d e s i r e s denied  everyday  reality.  t o them i n t h e 'normal' s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s o f  S i n c e women tend t o be d e p r i v e d more than men i n  most s o c i e t i e s , women a r e more l i k e l y as "possessed". a possession  t o become possessed  o r diagnosed  T h e i r cure u s u a l l y e n t a i l s l i f e - l o n g p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n  cult.  Lambek (1981) r e f u s e s t o c o n s i g n p o s s e s s i o n c u l t s t o t h e p e r i p h e r y o f s o c i e t y and s u g g e s t s ,  instead, that the s t r u c t u r e of  p o s s e s s i o n i s not simply "an e x p l a n a t o r y o r r a t i o n a l i z i n g developed  t o i n t e r p r e t trance behavior"  (1981:60).  device  Possession  i n Mayotte e f f e c t s communication between t h r e e "autonomous" the h o s t , t h e s p i r i t , and an a f f i n e o f t h e h o s t . is initially  ambiguous, but through  h o s t , s p i r i t , and a f f i n e accommodate the s p i r i t  repeated  trance  entities:  The s p i r i t ' s s t a t u s  trance sessions, the  t h e i r mutual r e l a t i o n s h i p s , and  i s " i n c o r p o r a t e d i n t o t h e body o f s p i r i t s o f t h a t s p e c i e s  t h a t i s a c t i v e i n t h e v i l l a g e and i n t o t h e extended o f the h o s t " (1981:117).  family  groupings  I t i s , i n f a c t , t h e s p i r i t who r e c e i v e s  m e d i c a t i o n i n a ceremony o s t e n s i b l y designed t o cure the h o s t .  This  s t r a t e g y , Lambek argues, s e r v e s t o juxtapose t h e i d e n t i t i e s o f host and s p i r i t and " t o communicate new dimensions  i n relationships  a r e i n e f f e c t a l l t h e time" beteen host and a f f i n e  that  (1981:83).  In her study o f a z a r c u l t i n N o r t h e r n Sudan, Boddy (1982) concludes t h a t s p i r i t  p o s s e s s i o n and a woman's i n i t i a l c u r i n g ceremony  mark her t r a n s i t i o n t o a d u l t s t a t u s .  Z a r s p i r i t s impersonate the  f a m i l i a r , t h e legendary, and t h e t r u l y e x o t i c f o r these Sudanese women.  As z a r s p i r i t s a s s e r t themelves  i n a myriad o f personae,  their  h o s t e s s e s c o n f r o n t t h e d i a l e c t i c o f s e l f and o t h e r , and a t t a i n a s e l f - k n o w l e d g e through exposure  to other  possibilities.  K a p f e r e r (1983) a d d r e s s e s a s i m i l a r i s s u e i n h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f exorcism r i t u a l s i n S r i Lanka. become possessed sit  Here t h e p a t i e n t s do not themselves  (though they may become e n t r a n c e d ) , but more o r l e s s  through n i g h t - l o n g r i t u a l s w h i l e an e x o r c i s t and h i s c o t e r i e o f  a c t o r - c u r e r s , who d r e s s as v a r i o u s demons, perform a v i r t u a l s i c k n e s s opera f o r t h e b e n e f i t o f t h e p a t i e n t and t h e a u d i e n c e . demonic i n t e r a c t i o n , as played by t h e c u r e r s , i s comic.  Much o f t h e Kapferer  f i n d s i n comedy " t h e d i s c o v e r y o f a l t e r n a t i v e p o s s i b i l i t i e s " , some o f which attempt  "to f a l s i f y  the w o r l d " (1983:210).  t h a t which we take t o be o b j e c t i v e l y t r u e i n  When exorcism comedy t e s t s t h e h i e r a r c h i c a l  o r d e r o f t h e S i n h a l e s e cosmos, t h e d i v i n e i s shown t o s u s t a i n  itself,  w h i l e t h e demonic " f a i l s t o m a i n t a i n i t s u n i t y and i s d i s c r e d i t e d and reduced" (1983:210).  During t h e r i t u a l ,  t h e p a t i e n t may be encouraged  14 to i d e n t i f y with illness).  the demonic element (which has  caused the  patient's  When, i n the performance, the demon i s " k i l l e d " ,  this  s i g n s the death of the r e l e v a n c e of the p a t i e n t ' s own s u b j e c t i v e a t t i t u d e toward the demonic. The comedy, i n s o f a r as the p a t i e n t can become s u b j e c t i v e l y d i s t a n c e d from h i m s e l f or h e r s e l f , and can r e c o n s t i t u t e s e l f as an o b j e c t and through the a t t i t u d e s of o t h e r s , has a p o t e n t i a l c u r a t i v e power (1983:219).  The  p a t i e n t i s cured when the c o n d i t i o n s are e s t a b l i s h e d f o r a  "reformation  of the normal a t t i t u d e , both towards the world of  supernatural  and  towards the mundane r e a l i t i e s which are  w i t h i n i t " (Kapferer  the  incorporated  1983:205).  Crapanzano's study (1973) o f the Hamadsha, a Moroccan r e l i g i o u s brotherhood i d e n t i f i e d w i t h a p o s s e s s i o n had  a marked i n f l u e n c e on both Lambek and  c u l t , an a n a l y s i s which  Boddy, appears, however, t o  bear the most s i g n i f i c a n t l y of a l l of these s t u d i e s upon the case.  Crapanzano f o c u s e s  exegesis.  P a t i e n t s who  may  become s i c k as a r e s u l t of  transgressions  t h e i r h o s t s , and behavior and  possession  e v e n t u a l l y e l e c t t o j o i n the c u l t .  known to Boddy and  jnun become more accommodating and  towards t h e i r h o s t s .  But  t h e i r transformation  spirits  alter  their  i s dramatic,  by the t r a n s f e r of baraka, a s p i r i t u a l power o f  s a i n t l y o r i g i n a t i o n , from c u l t adepts to the p a t i e n t . afflicting  L i k e the  Lambek, jnun o f t e n become the l i f e - p a r t n e r s of  the  i t i s achieved  Tibetan  on the concept of baraka i n Hamadsha c u r i n g  a g a i n s t jnun s p i r i t s must p a r t i c i p a t e i n a Hamadsha ceremony, and  has  j i n n i s very powerful,  I f the  the t r a n s f e r of baraka to  the  p a t i e n t does not c u r e , but r a t h e r "puts the p a t i e n t i n a s t a t e of  p o t e n t i a l c u r e " (1973:168). i s transformed  In the p r o c e s s  "from a h i g h l y c o n t a g i o u s  of a Hamadsha c u r e ,  baraka  p o t e n t i a l i z i n g f o r c e to a  non-contagious p o t e n t i a l or a c t u a l s t a t e of b e i n g "  (1973:166-167).  g e n e r a l , t h i s baraka can be t r a n s m i t t e d i n o n l y two  ways: (1) by  In  the  d i r e c t descendent of a s a i n t l y Hamadsha l i n e a g e , or (2) by a c u l t adept i n an e x t r a o r d i n a r y s t a t e .  These r u l e s of t r a n s m i s s i o n  suggest  t h a t once the p a t i e n t r e c e i v e s baraka, c u l t i d e o l o g y appears t o p a i n s to r e s t r i c t  i t s i n a p p r o p r i a t e t r a n s f e r or p o s s e s s i o n .  take  The  p a t i e n t , f o r example, w i l l not be a b l e to t r a n s f e r baraka h i m s e l f , i s u s u a l l y cured when h i s new regimen of p r a y e r s and  and  a c q u i s i t i o n of baraka i s tempered w i t h  a  p i l g r i m a g e , a regimen which l e g i t i m a t e s the  acquisition. Geertz  d e s c r i b e s baraka as "a g i f t which some men  have i n g r e a t e r  degree than o t h e r s , and which a few...have i n s u p e r l a t i v e degree" (1971:44).  He  suggests t h a t what has been a t p l a y i n Moroccan  c u l t u r a l h i s t o r y i s "the e l e v a t i o n of what Max  Weber c a l l e d  charisma over what he c a l l e d p e r s o n a l charisma and  to the containment  of baraka w i t h i n the c o n f i n e s of a f i x e d and  ordered  (1971:45).  sees i t , i s " t o  who  has  The  i t , how  problem of baraka, as G e e r t z much, and  how  In T i b e t a n s o c i e t y , two Moroccan s o c i e t y - dbang and as  t o b e n e f i t from i t "  s t a t u s system" decide  (1971:44).  concepts p a r a l l e l the n o t i o n of baraka i n r l u n g - r t a (roughly glossed r e s p e c t i v e l y  'power' a n d ' l u c k ' ) , which a r e , e s s e n t i a l l y , two  capacities.  hereditary  I t i s the m a n i p u l a t i o n  the q u e s t i o n of s p i r i t a t t a c k and  mutually  of these c a p a c i t i e s t h a t  r i t u a l cure f o r T i b e t a n s .  exclusive informs  16  O r g a n i z a t i o n o f Content  I n the above, I have c o n s i d e r e d  s e v e r a l important  approaches to the study o f c u r i n g r i t u a l s , the p a t i e n t ' s a p p e r c e p t i o n o f h i s o r her c u r e .  theoretical  a l l o f which suggest t h a t  o f "power" i s i n t e g r a l  I n Chapter I I , I i n t r o d u c e  to the p o s s i b i l i t y  the f i e l d  l o c a t i o n and  i n c o r p o r a t e some n o t i o n s o f cosmology w i t h a d e s c r i p t i o n o f i t s geography.  I n e x t p r o v i d e a rough taxonomy o f the people who l i v e i n  Dharmsala - the T i b e t a n s , l o c a l I n d i a n Gaddhis, and the v a r i o u s o f Westerners who a l s o l i v e i n o r v i s i t Dharmsala.  This  types  taxonomy i s  f o l l o w e d by a d i s c u s s i o n o f the "Tibetan-Western I n t e r f a c e " , and I complete the chapter  w i t h a more d e t a i l e d d e s c r i p t i o n o f T i b e t a n  cosmology and the concept o f lama o r s p i r i t u a l introduces  teacher.  the n o t i o n o f l e g i t i m a t e c o s m o l o g i c a l  hierarchy i n Tibetan  i d e o l o g y , d i s c u s s e s some i l l n e s s e s a t t r i b u t e d to human upon t h i s l e g i t i m a t e h i e r a r c h y , and a n a l y z e s addressed  to such  Chapter I I I  infringement  the l o g i c o f r i t u a l  cures  illnesses.  Chapter IV probes the q u e s t i o n o f e v i l r e f l e c t i n g upon the d e s i r e s o f demons.  i n T i b e t a n s o c i e t y by  T i b e t a n demons and g h o s t s ,  who  o f t e n a t t a c k i n n o c e n t v i c t i m s , g e n e r a l l y wish to be someone e l s e . T h e i r v a r i o u s attempts  to a c h i e v e a d i f f e r e n t ( h i g h e r ) s t a t u s a r e  o f t e n clumsy, b u t may a l s o prove to be e x c e e d i n g l y  dangerous.  The  worst g h o s t s and demons a r e monks o r lamas who have a c q u i r e d a g r e a t d e a l o f s p i r i t u a l power, but whose minds have turned a g a i n s t Chapter V examines the l o g i c o f three modes o f T i b e t a n  religion.  exorcism  17 designed  to d e f e a t  the demonic, and then reviews a r i t u a l a p p l i c a t i o n  o f some o f these modes i n a s e c u l a r c o n t e x t . exorcism  h e l d a t the T i b e t a n C h i l d r e n ' s V i l l a g e  s o u l o f a dead monk t e a c h e r , a s o u l having powerful  Chapter V I d e s c r i b e s an to c a p t u r e  the s t o l e n  the p o t e n t i a l to become a  t h r e a t to the community.  Chapter V I I turns  to a d e t a i l e d i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f the concept o f  r l u n g - r t a i n T i b e t a n i d e o l o g y , and r e l a t e s t h i s concept to gambling, s p o r t s , d i v i n a t i o n , and to the cure o f p a t i e n t s who have provoked a t t a c k s from s p i r i t s .  Chapter V I I I p r e s e n t s  h i s t o r i c a l l e g i t i m a t i o n of r u l e i n T i b e t . conclusion. curing  Here I t i e the symbolic  implications of Tibetan  T i b e t a n s o c i e t y , and to c e r t a i n q u e s t i o n s problematic.  o f the  ,  Chapter IX i s the  to v a r i o u s p o s s i b i l i t i e s o f s u c c e s s i o n  currently  a synopsis  ritual  to c h a r i s m a t i c o f f i c e i n  of legitimacy Tibetans  find  18  NOTES  1. Dharmsala i s a l s o commonly s p e l l e d "Dharamsala". I p r e f e r "Dharmsala", as i t i s the c o n v e n t i o n adopted by the Government o f I n d i a w i t h r e s p e c t to o f f i c i a l maps o f I n d i a .  2. John Avedon (1984) g i v e s an e x c e l l e n t a c c o u n t o f the p e r s o n a l h i s t o r i e s of some o f the s u r v i v o r s o f Chinese p r i s o n s i n T i b e t who have been a b l e to r e a c h I n d i a , and o f some o f the f l i g h t s i n t o e x i l e made by Dharmsala T i b e t a n s i n 1959. I n a d d i t i o n to c h r o n i c l i n g the immediate events l e a d i n g up to the March 10, 1959 U p r i s i n g by T i b e t a n s i n Lhasa a g a i n s t the Chinese, and the escape o f the D a l a i Lama, Avedon u t i l i z e s T i b e t a n sources to p r o v i d e a r a r e view i n t o post-1959 T i b e t . 3. There were f o u r " f a c t - f i n d i n g m i s s i o n s " to T i b e t composed m a i n l y of r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f the T i b e t a n G o v e r n m e n t - i n - E x i l e between 1979 and 1982. These m i s s i o n s have been suspended s i n c e 1983, when new r e p o r t s of the e x e c u t i o n o f T i b e t a n s i n T i b e t reached Dharmsala. 4. T i b e t a n s who have been granted p e r m i s s i o n by the Chinese to t r a v e l to I n d i a a r e never a l l o w e d to t r a v e l to I n d i a ( o r to Nepal) w i t h t h e i r spouses. Some o f these T i b e t a n v i s i t o r s were p e r m i t t e d to t r a v e l w i t h t h e i r c h i l d r e n , and, when p o s s i b l e , the T i b e t a n v i s i t o r s l e f t t h e i r c h i l d r e n behind i n I n d i a I n o r d e r to be educated i n T i b e t a n s c h o o l s . In a d d i t i o n , T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s , who wish to v i s i t t h e i r r e l a t i v e s i n T i b e t , a r e c u r r e n t l y g r a n t e d Chinese v i s a s on the c o n d i t i o n t h a t they apply f o r v i s a s as "Overseas Chinese", and n o t as T i b e t a n s . T h i s p r a c t i c e has p l a c e d the T i b e t a n s i n a p a r t i c u l a r l y d i f f i c u l t s i t u a t i o n , s i n c e they must choose between v i s i t i n g t h e i r r e l a t i v e s and s e r v i n g the p o l i t i c a l ends o f the Chinese. One f u r t h e r p o i n t o f concern, which has a r i s e n i n the c o n t e x t o f t h i s exchange o f v i s i t o r s and l e t t e r s , i s the f a c t t h a t i n o r d e r f o r a T i b e t a n i n T i b e t to a p p l y f o r t r a v e l p e r m i s s i o n , he o r she must l i s t h i s o r h e r r e l a t i v e s l i v i n g in e x i l e . E q u a l l y , a refugee T i b e t a n a p p l y i n g f o r a Chinese v i s a must l i s t h i s o r h e r d e s t i n a t i o n and the r e l a t i v e s who l i v e t h e r e . The c r u x o f the T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s ' c o n c e r n i s t h a t t h i s mapping o f f a m i l i e s i n T i b e t and i n e x i l e c o u l d be used, i f the p o l i t i c a l c l i m a t e changed, to p u t a d d i t i o n a l p r e s s u r e upon e x i l e T i b e t a n s w o r r i e d about t h e i r r e l a t i v e s ' welfare or l i v e s . 5. Andrugtsang (1973), P a t t e r s o n (1960), P e i s s e l (1972), and Avedon (1984) p r o v i d e d e t a i l e d accounts o f the T i b e t a n r e s i s t a n c e movement.  19  CHAPTER I I  THE  SETTING  Introduction  T h i s c h a p t e r p r o v i d e s a p h y s i c a l , s o c i a l , and c o s m o l o g i c a l s e t t i n g f o r the study. Dharmsala,  I first  d e s c r i b e the p h y s i c a l s e t t i n g o f  then t u r n to a d i s c u s s i o n o f some o f the s o c i a l a s p e c t s o f  Tibetan l i f e  i n Dharmsala, and c o n c l u d e w i t h an overview o f T i b e t a n  cosmology and the r o l e o f the lama i n T i b e t a n  Buddhism.  The T e r r a i n  Dharmsala,  the s i t e o f my f i e l d w o r k among T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s , has  been the s e a t o f the D a l a i Lama's Government s i n c e 1960. situated spectacularly  It is  i n the I n d i a n s t a t e o f Himachal Pradesh a t the  f o o t h i l l s o f the Dhauladhar Range, Himalayan peaks w i t h an average a l t i t u d e o f about 5,000 meters. from these mountains. first  Two r i d g e s s e p a r a t e Dharmsala proper  The B r i t i s h b u i l t a m i l i t a r y cantonment on the  r i d g e , which r i s e s some 1,000 meters from lower Dharmsala.  A  lower and more narrow r i d g e , upon which the B r i t i s h e s t a b l i s h e d the town o f McLeod Ganj, roughly b i s e c t s  this f i r s t  ridge.  These  ridges  and the mountains harbor deodar t r e e s , rhododendrons, p i n e s , w i l d  f l o w e r s and w i l d l i f e : ,  snow l e o p a r d s , bears,  f o x e s , j a c k a l s , Rhesus  macaques, l a n g u r s , hawks, v u l t u r e s , a v a r i e t y o f o t h e r Himalayan birds,  the odd  s c o r p i o n , and  r a r e snake.  What t r u l y s e t s Dharmsala  a p a r t from o t h e r b e t t e r known former h i l l Mussoorie i s i t s r e l a t i v e ease of access the Dhauladars, which may less but  t a x i n g days.  be reached  Dharmsala was  i t s heady a t t r a c t i o n soured  McLeod Ganj was  on  to be  s t a t i o n s such as Simla coupled w i t h  and  the i n t i m a c y o f  f o o t i n one arduous o r  two  the summer c a p i t a l of the R a j ,  i n 1905  when a l m o s t a l l o f  d e s t r o y e d and many were k i l l e d  i n an  the town of  earthquake.  Simla became the summer c a p i t a l and McLeod Ganj a l l b u t ' f o r g o t t e n . A s c i o n of the N.N.  Nowrojee f a m i l y , p r o p r i e t o r s of a  general  merchandise s t o r e i n McLeod Ganj f o r g e n e r a t i o n s , had been i n t e r e s t e d in reviving  the town.  When he heard  t h a t the Government of I n d i a  was  s e e k i n g a permanent r e s i d e n c e f o r the D a l a i Lama, he p e t i t i o n e d  New  D e l h i and P a n d i t Nehru.  and  the T i b e t a n s  The  Government of I n d i a , P a n d i t Nehru,  found McLeod Ganj an a g r e e a b l e  solution.  The  British  had  a l r e a d y earmarked three d i s t i n c t l o c a l e s i n D h a r m s a l a s upper r e g i o n : 1  the army cantonment, McLeod Ganj, and H i g h c r o f t House, the s e a t of the d i s t r i c t commissioner.  T h i s house, about h a l f a k i l o m e t e r  above McLeod G a n j , became the temporary " p a l a c e " o f The T i b e t a n C h i l d r e n ' s V i l l a g e , a s c h o o l and T i b e t a n orphans and  semi-orphans, was  near the army cantonment, and  to T i b e t a n s who  The  complex f o r  c o n s t r u c t e d h i g h up on  a few T i b e t a n f a m i l i e s  "ghost  the D a l a i Lama.  dormitory  j u s t beneath the T i b e t a n C h i l d r e n ' s V i l l a g e or "TCV" hamlet o f F o r s y t h e G a n j .  original  took up  the r i d g e residence  i n the s m a l l  town" of McLeod Ganj became home  l e a r n e d o f the D a l a i Lama's acceptance o f the  offer.  Many of  them came to McLeod Ganj to a s s i s t i n the e s t a b l i s h m e n t  m o n a s t e r i e s , temple, and  government of  the D a l a i Lama.  c o n t i n u e to f u n c t i o n as a s e r v i c e community f o r the government, w h i l e o t h e r s and  elected  to s e t up  A l t h o u g h McLeod Ganj was  guaranteed, i t was  restaurants,  to t h i s  a p l a c e where work was  crews, the employment o f most T i b e t a n When many T i b e t a n s  Some of them  s m a l l shops,  an a l t e r n a t i v e to working i n road  the  Tibetan  h o t e l s c a t e r i n g to the i n f l u x o f Western v i s i t o r s  Lhasa".  of  "Little  not  construction  refugees i n the e a r l y 1960's.  working i n these crews were o f f e r e d homesteads i n  the s o u t h o f I n d i a ,  those who  had  managed to garner a l i v i n g  in  Dharmsala remained. McLeod Ganj, w i t h i t s two  s t r e e t s , expanded as T i b e t a n  t r i c k l e d down the f l a n k s of i t s narrow r i d g e , s t o p p i n g small, terraced  farms of  the l o c a l Gaddhi v i l l a g e r s .  dwellings  s h o r t of One  end  the  of  Mcleod Ganj's narrow r i d g e abuts the f i r s t major r i d g e p a r a l l e l i n g Dhauladar range, the r i d g e h o s t i n g TGV  and  "temporary p a l a c e " .  of  At  the other  end  the D a l a i Lama's former the r i d g e , Rnam-rgyal  Monastery, the Buddhist S c h o o l o f D i a l e c t i c s , and temple were b u i l t . r i d g e , a new  the main B u d d h i s t  J u s t beyond t h i s complex, a t the v e r y  residence  was  constructed  edge of  f o r the D a l a i Lama. of  Dharmsala.  f i n d s the L i b r a r y of  About half-way down t h i s road one Archives,  the C a b i n e t B u i l d i n g and  the D a l a i Lama's Government, and government o f f i c e r s .  Close  the r i d g e  dormitories  other  to lower  offices  for resident scholars  to t h i s complex, r e f e r r e d to as  " L i b r a r y " or "Gangs-skyid" (a p l e a s i n g view o f  the snow  the  A narrow  road motorable by j e e p descends from t h i s end  T i b e t a n Works and  the  either  of and the  mountains),  a term r e f e r r i n g  to the government b u i l d i n g s , i s the  Nechung (Gnas-chung) Monastery. is  The  abbot o f the Nechung Monstery  the c h i e f s t a t e o r a c l e o f T i b e t , the Nechung O r a c l e . The  end o f McLeod Ganj o p p o s i t e to the temple complex and  D a l a i Lama's p a l a c e i s the bus motorable by bus,  two  roads  stop, a convergence of f i v e  buses are l i m i t e d  stop.  stop and bathing  a footpath.  to the t w e l v e - k i l o m e t e r  Bazaar i n Lower Dharmsala up bus  Scheduled  upon  passenger  s t r e t c h o f road from K o t w a l i  through F o r s y t h e Ganj to the McLeod Ganj  But c h a r t e r e d buses may  c a r r y Hindu p i l g r i m s p a s t t h i s  bus  a l o n g Bhagsu Road, p a s t a S e i s r a o l o g i c a l S t a t i o n to the s p r i n g s o f Bhagsunath and  p i l g r i m s may  i t s S h i v a temple.  From Bhagsunath,  walk a b i t f u r t h e r to the Bhagsu w a t e r f a l l .  T i b e t a n government o f f i c e r s , d i g n i t a r i e s , and Delek H o s p i t a l workers (a Western m e d i c a l c l i n i c A u s t r a l i a n i n t e r n s and nurses nurses)  roads  more or l e s s motorable (depending  monsoon c o n d i t i o n s ) by j e e p , and  the  and  (Bde-legs)  s t a f f e d by v o l u n t e e r  some b i o - m e d i c a l l y t r a i n e d  f r e q u e n t l y t r a v e l by jeep from TCV  to McLeod Ganj and  Tibetan on  to  the temple complex o r down the r i d g e to the T i b e t a n L i b r a r y and government complex.  Of  motorable by j e e p , one  the two leads  roads which a r e  to the " o l d p a l a c e "  Government t r e k k i n g h o s t e l ) and  conditionally (now  on to Dharamkot, w h i l e  an  Indian  the o t h e r  reaches  the T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e of Performing  a  to T r i u n d ( t h e saddle of the second r i d g e s e p a r a t i n g Dharmsala  trail  from the Dhauladar Range). during  the B r i t i s h Raj  monsoon.  But  These two  A r t s b e f o r e i t fades  roads were bedded w i t h  i n o r d e r to p r e s e r v e  into  rock  t h e i r i n t e g r i t y during  these rocks have a l l but disappeared  the  as T i b e t a n s removed  23 them to f o r t i f y  the f o u n d a t i o n s of t h e i r h i l l s i d e houses.  The f o o t p a t h l e a d i n g from McLeod Ganj p a s t a former p o s t and a s m a l l temple b e g i n s d e c e p t i v e l y as a paved road. p o s t o f f i c e , however, i t narrows and d r a m a t i c a l l y McLeod Ganj  office  Once p a s t the  to a d i r t p a t h which descends r a p i d l y  to lower Dharmsala.  I t i s the s h o r t e s t r o u t e from  to lower Dharmsala but an u n l i k e l y c h o i c e f o r anyone  w i t h b a z a a r purchases from the markets of lower Dharmsala. road to TGV  laden  The paved  from McLeod Ganj winds p a s t a f o u n t a i n b u i l t by the Gorkha  R i f l e s and then o f f e r s  the t r a v e l l e r an a l t e r n a t e r o u t e , a f o o t p a t h  a s c e n d i n g more s t e e p l y and d i r e c t l y  to TCV.  T a k i n g the s h o r t e s t p a t h  a v a i l a b l e , whether o r n o t i t l i e s s t r a i g h t up a mountainside, i s ° jokingly referred A relatively Arts  to by young T i b e t a n s as "choosing the t a n t r i c p a t h " .  l e v e l footpath links  (TIPA) and a Sngags-pa  the T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e o f P e r f o r m i n g  Sgom-pa w i t h  the TGV,  t r a v e r s i n g the c r e s t  of t h i s major r i d g e a g a i n s t which McLeod Ganj a b u t s . The Sngags-pa  Sgom-pa i s a s m a l l temple complex o f a r e i n c a r n a t e d  Rnying-ma-pa weathermaker-cum-exorclst, h i s f a m i l y , d i s c i p l e s , and f e l l o w sngags-pas. p r a c t i t i o n e r , who  A sngags-pa Is e s s e n t i a l l y a controls  tantric  the weather, conducts exorcisms, and  performs d i v i n a t i o n s ; sgom-pa r e f e r s  to a temple (as a p l a c e o f  meditation).  The Sngags-pa  Sgom-pa p r o p e r l y marks one end o f  major r i d g e .  To the n o r t h , i t commands a m a g n i f i c e n t view of the  Dhauladar Range, T r i u n d , and Bhagsunath F a l l s ; a view a c r o s s the v a l l e y from the Sngags-pa government  to the e a s t , i t a f f o r d s  formed by the Bhagsu R i v e r .  Looking south  Sgom-pa, one sees the T i b e t a n L i b r a r y and  o f f i c e s some 500 meters lower.  this  V TO LOWER D H A R M S A L A  TO LOWER D H A R M S A L A  TRAILS ROADS  — ^ —  TO LOWER DHARMSALA  II. MAP OF UPPER D H A R M S A L A (SCHEMATIC ONLY)  The  path up the r i d g e from the Sngags-pa Sgom-pa and  along i t s  c r e s t l e a d s from the TIPA to the Tshe-mchog-gling monastery.  Directly  a c r o s s the path from Tshe-mchog-gling i s R i s h i Bhawan, a t o u r i s t h o s t e l , where Western " h i p p i e s " as they a r e c a l l e d by the T i b e t a n s , o f t e n h o l d " f u l l moon" p a r t i e s .  The  path ascends f u r t h e r to the  r e s i d e n c e of the former G l i n g Rinpoche, s e n i o r t u t o r to the D a l a i Lama, and  then past the " o l d p a l a c e " up through  a wilder, uninhabited  r e g i o n marked by stone c a i r n s , s i d e p a t h s to m e d i t a t i o n caves, incense-burning Children's  ground, and,  finally,  an  l o o p s down to the T i b e t a n  Village.  The C o s m o l o g i c a l I n t e r f a c e  The above d e s c r i p t i o n b a r e l y s k e t c h e s the complex topography geography of Upper Dharmsala. and  frequented  roads and  A l l of these r o u t e s a r e well-known to  by the T i b e t a n s of Upper Dharmsala.  However, these  paths l i n k t o g e t h e r not o n l y the v a r i o u s r e g i o n s of  Dharmsala, but a l s o the t r a v e l l e r to o t h e r cosmic realms.  Many of  these r o u t e s , a c c o r d i n g to T i b e t a n b e l i e f , i n v i t e a p o s s i b l e with supernatural beings.  r e s p i t e on t h i s steep road.  J u s t beyond t h i s t e a s t a l l  s p r i n g , a known haunt of k l u , the c h t h o n i c , touchy s o i l and water who  are a k i n to w a t e r - d w e l l i n g  and  by the i r r i t a t e d  klu.  a welcome  i s a small  guardians  of the  snake-like  I f the t r a v e l l e r p o l l u t e s t h i s stream, he or she  s i c k n e s s caused  encounter  Halfway down the road from McLeod Ganj to  the T i b e t a n L i b r a r y , f o r example, i s Devi Chand's t e a s t a l l ,  creatures.  and  The Gorkha F o u n t a i n , a  risks  f o u n t a i n b u i l t by the Gorkha R i f l e s on the road t o TCV,  i s a much  grander s o u r c e o f water and i s b e l i e v e d t o be p o p u l a t e d by many powerful k l u .  The T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e o f P e r f o r m i n g A r t s i s a l s o home  t o a number o f k l u .  Care i s taken not t o p o l l u t e the w e l l near  the  I n s t i t u t e ' s s i n g l e water t a p . K l u , however, a r e not the o n l y s u p e r n a t u r a l b e i n g s who Upper Dharmsala.  inhabit  Bends i n the road ( o r path) a r e t o be approached  n i g h t w i t h extreme c a u t i o n , s i n c e one may p l a c e s o f b e a u t i f u l women who  c a t c h a glimpse i n such  a r e a c t u a l l y ghosts attemping  to l u r e  u n s u s p e c t i n g male t r a v e l e r s o f f a p r e c i p i c e t o t h e i r d e a t h s .  A famous  bend i n the road l e a d i n g t o the TIPA i s marked by mani s t o n e s , l a r g e rock s l a b s p a i n t e d c o l o r f u l l y w i t h the p r a y e r "Om hum"  ( " a l l h a i l t o the j e w e l i n the l o t u s " ) .  was  to Triund.  encountered who  c a t t l e a l o n g the f a m i l i a r but p r e c i p i t o u s r o u t e on For no apparent  f e l l to t h e i r deaths. gz'a s p i r i t s ,  mani padme  S t o r i e s a r e a l s o t o l d of a l o c a l Gaddhi woman  d r i v i n g her two  the way  two  These s t o n e s a r e  i n t e n d e d t o c o u n t e r a c t a number o f e v i l s p i r i t s seen or along t h i s road.  at  r e a s o n , t h i s woman and her cows  People say t h a t she was  a t t a c k e d by  powerful  e v i l emanations from the p l a n e t s .  The most famous t r a v e r s e i s a l o n g the road from McLeod Ganj t o Forsythe Ganj.  F o r s y t h e Ganj, where s e v e r a l houses s e l l  chang  ( T i b e t a n b a r l e y b e e r ) , i s an a t t r a c t i v e evening d e s t i n a t i o n f o r some T i b e t a n men.  S i n c e the bus from Lower Dharmsala t o McLeod Ganj  t r a v e l s i n f r e q u e n t l y a t n i g h t , w a l k i n g t o F o r s y t h e Ganj (about  two  k i l o m e t e r s ) i s the p o p u l a r c h o i c e .  The road, however, t a k e s the  t r a v e l l e r p a s t two  f e a t u r e s o f the l a n d s c a p e .  r a t h e r hazardous  The  f i r s t hazard i s a b r i d g e which i s f r e q u e n t l y washed away by monsoon.  the  J u s t below t h i s b r i d g e i s the T i b e t a n b u r n i n g ghat  c r e m a t i o n ground, a p l a c e v i s i t e d a t n i g h t o n l y by sngags-pas wish t o t e s t t h e i r powers a g a i n s t c a n n i b a l s p i r i t s . bit  or who  Down the road a  f u r t h e r i s the Church of S t . John i n the W i l d e r n e s s w i t h i t s  s t a i n e d g l a s s windows and monument t o L o r d E l g i n , V i c e r o y of I n d i a , who  d i e d i n Dharmsala and was  b u r i e d i n the cemetery by t h i s church i n  1863. The b u r n i n g ghat and the cemetery a l e r t the t r a v e l l e r t o the p o s s i b i l i t y of e n c o u n t e r i n g a g h o s t .  Such apprehension  i s more  t y p i c a l of the t r a v e l l e r from McLeod Ganj t o F o r s y t h e Ganj, s i n c e i t i s b e l i e v e d t h a t a t r a v e l l e r w e l l - f o r t i f i e d w i t h chang would be  less  l i k e l y t o spot a n y t h i n g out o f the o r d i n a r y .  people  who  Reports abound o f  have been dead f o r y e a r s b e i n g s i g h t e d on t h i s r o a d .  The b e s t  way  to handle a ghost one might meet i n such c i r c u m s t a n c e s i s t o not respond  t o any q u e s t i o n s the ghost might ask of one.  T i b e t a n s say  t h a t r e s p o n d i n g t o o r acknowledging the ghost would e n s l a v e one t o i t .  The T i b e t a n s of Dharmsala  Refugee T i b e t a n s have been a f a v o u r e d t a r g e t f o r the e f f o r t s  of  i n t e r n a t i o n a l agencies.  A former  p r e s i d e n t of the World C o u n c i l o f  Churches e x p l a i n e d t o me  t h a t of a l l the r e f u g e e groups w i t h which he  had worked, o n l y the T i b e t a n s had managed t o s u s t a i n t h e i r integrity  over a p e r i o d of more than twenty y e a r s .  the c o n t i n u e d i n t e r e s t  cultural  He ventured t h a t  of the a i d a g e n c i e s i n the T i b e t a n s had much t o  28 do w i t h t h i s fact.^" Some 5,000 t o 8,000 T i b e t a n s l i v e i n McLeod Ganj, the TCV,  and  the T i b e t a n l i b r a r y complex o r i n what i s r e f e r r e d t o as Upper Dharmsala.  The T i b e t a n p o p u l a t i o n f l u c t u a t e s a c c o r d i n g t o the  s w e a t e r - s e l l i n g season.  During the months from November t o March,  thousand o r so T i b e t a n s l e a v e Dharmsala  t o purchase sweaters w h o l e s a l e  i n the Punjab and then r e t a i l them i n the h i l l c i t i e s of northern I n d i a . p o p u l a t i o n o f shopkeepers  s t a t i o n s and  ( b u t c h e r s , t e a vendors, c i g a r e t t e vendors, liquor  e s t a b l i s h e d t h e i r b u s i n e s s e s a f t e r the i n f l u x o f T i b e t a n s  to the r e g i o n . it,  major  McLeod Ganj a l s o h o s t s a s m a l l I n d i a n  f r u i t and v e g e t a b l e vendors, and a Himachal Pradesh s t a t e s t o r e ) , who  two  The McLeod Ganj r i d g e , as w e l l as the r i d g e s  a r e f l a n k e d w i t h the houses and t e r r a c e d farms of l o c a l  beyond Gaddhi  people. The T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s l i v i n g i n Dharmsala  o r i g i n a t e from  r e g i o n s o f T i b e t : Lhasa, Mng'a-ri, Dbus-Gtsang, Spu-rang, and Kong-po (see Map d i a l e c t s of Tibetan.  Amdo, Khams,  I I I ) ; and they speak  Most Dharmsala  different  different  T i b e t a n s have r e l a t i v e s l i v i n g i n  s e t t l e m e n t s i n South I n d i a , and many o f the young government workers, t e a c h e r s , m u s i c i a n s , a c t o r s , and dancers do not have immediate  family  members l i v i n g i n Dharmsala. T h i s absence o f immediate  r e l a t i v e s c o n t r i b u t e s t o the i n c r e a s i n g  i n c i d e n c e o f " l o v e " m a r r i a g e s among the young. still  Marriage patterns  r e f l e c t , however, t h o s e p r a c t i c e d i n T i b e t .  T i b e t a n s appear t o  be e s s e n t i a l l y p a t r i l i n e a l and p a t r i l o c a l ; however, as A z i z n o t e s , r e s i d e n c e i n T i b e t took precedence over  lineality.  (1974)  INNER M O N G O L I A  DHARMSALA  SIMLA  INDIA  • DELHI  CHINA  III.  MAP OF ETHNIC TIBET  to  I l l e g i t i m a t e c h i l d r e n were absorbed i n t o b r o t h e r , and  i l l e g i t i m a t e males would o f t e n a c q u i r e equal r i g h t s  property with  the mother's b r o t h e r ' s  T i b e t - polyandry polygyny, and of  sons.  The m a r r i a g e p a t t e r n s o f  monogamy - o b t a i n i n Dharmsala and  i n other  settlements  in India.  these marriage p a t t e r n s , polygyny i s the most i n f r e q u e n t .  R i n c h e n Dolma T a r i n g (1970) d e s c r i b e s her own polygynous one,  i n terms o f a p o l i t i c a l and  o c c a s i o n a l l y adopted by polygyny behest  to  (a d i s c u s s i o n of which e n t e r s i n t o Chapter V I I ) ,  T i b e t a n refugees Of  the household of the mother's  f i r s t marriage,  a  economic s t r a t e g y  the T i b e t a n a r i s t o c r a t s .  In e x i l e ,  however,  tends to o c c u r among commoners, and appears to o c c u r a t  of a f i r s t w i f e .  I n one  such i n s t a n c e , a woman asked  husband to take her c l o s e f r i e n d as an a d d i t i o n a l w i f e .  the  her  A more common  r a t i o n a l e f o r polygyny, however, i s g i v e n as a f i r s t w i f e ' s f e a r s t h a t her husband might l e a v e h e r , and I n T i b e t , some T i b e t a n s attempt by  say  the f i r s t w i f e  b e a u t i f u l woman.  The  with  t h a t these endeavors e n t a i l e d an a c t i v e  to seek out and  b e f r i e n d a younger and  f i r s t w i f e would then suggest  husband as a second w i f e . preoccupied  cease to be her economic p r o v i d e r .  the new  In t h i s way,  the husband would  had girl  be  The  daughter, on a  t h e r e f o r e , v a c a t i o n i n g i n another  a t t r a c t e d the amorous o v e r t u r e s of her s t e p - f a t h e r .  p a r t of I n d i a ) , Though  r e s i s t e d h i s advances s u c c e s s f u l l y , the mother wished  the s i t u a t i o n (and  wife.  a t a T i b e t a n s c h o o l when one woman  attempted a s i m i l a r s t r a t e g y w i t h her daughter. s c h o o l h o l i d a y (and,  t h i s woman to her  w i f e , b u t would not abandon the f i r s t  A minor s c a n d a l erupted  more  the  to r e s o l v e  to p r e v e n t her husband's p o t e n t i a l wandering) by  m a r r y i n g the g i r l  to her  step-father.  A l t h o u g h such a p r a c t i c e  m i r r o r s d e s c r i p t i o n s g i v e n by P r i n c e P e t e r father-son polyandry, holiday  the g i r l and  her  (1963) of  Tibetan  school-fellows  (who  i n the same a r e a ) found the s i t u a t i o n u n t e n a b l e .  The  s c h o o l - f e l l o w s arranged f o r the g i r l ' s "escape" from her house, and, sponsor (who  upon her  r e t u r n to s c h o o l ,  p a i d f o r her  s o l i c i t i n g his financial T i b e t was hierarchy  i s sustained  s c h o o l i n g ) , e x p l a i n i n g her  by T i b e t a n s  The  The  distinction  e s s e n t i a l c l a s s d i s t i n c t i o n was and  former possessed h e r i t a b l e lands  f u r t h e r c a t e g o r i z e d as While  upon which they p a i d  the tax to  o r to t h a t of a n o b l e f a m i l y .  These commoners were both  nomads ('abrog-pa).  be a t t a c h e d  to e s t a t e s or owners of  l a t t e r paid  taxes d i r e c t l y  butchers,  overlord.  The  Nomads, however, could  t h e i r own  s i z a b l e herds.  lowest c l a s s of T i b e t a n s  d i s t i n g u i s h e d because they committed blacksmiths,  pay  to a monastic e s t a t e  to the T i b e t a n government, and  metal workers, miners, and  metal workers and  their  the " s m a l l h o u s e h o l d e r s " tended to might be a t t a c h e d  intermediary  t h a t between  taxpayers  t h e i r tax i n corvee l a b o r , and  a g r i c u l t u r a l i s t s and  of  the commoners ( m i - s e r ) .  s m a l l householders (dud-chung).  (a h e r e d i t a r y n o b l e ) ,  this  been addressed by G o l d s t e i n (1971a,  commoners, however, c o u l d be  overlord  s i t u a t i o n and  the observance of  in exile.  the h e r e d i t a r y a r i s t o c r a t s (sku-drag),  ( k h r a l - p a ) , and  Western  assistance.  s o c i e t y has  1971b, 1971c, 1972).  mother's  the g i r l wrote to her  a h i e r a r c h i c a l s o c i e t y , and  classes i n Tibetan  The  were on  blacksmiths.  was  not  The to an  comprised  of  Butchers were so  the grave s i n o f k i l l i n g  animals;  because they manufactured weapons;  and  32 miners,  because they invaded t h e t e r r i t o r y and s t o l e t h e t r e a s u r e s o f  the g u a r d i a n s o f t h e e a r t h .  Corpse c a r r i e r s and beggars c o n s t i t u t e d  the e q u i v a l e n t o f o u t c a s t e s i n T i b e t .  A z i z (1974:24) i d e n t i f i e s f o u r  major endogamous groups i n T i b e t : t h e a r i s t o c r a c y ; sngags-pa ( h e r e d i t a r y p r i e s t s ) ; mi-ser  ( a g r i c u l t u r a l i s t s , nomads, l a b o r e r s , and  t r a d e r s ) ; and yawa ( o u t c a s t e s ) . In Dharmsala, T i b e t a n s d e s c r i b e themselves  as former  a g r i c u l t u r a l i s t s , nomads, merchants, a r i s t o c r a t s , m u s i c i a n s , a c t o r s , or monks.  With t h e e x c e p t i o n o f t h e a r i s t o c r a t s , Dharmsala T i b e t a n s  c u r r e n t l y tend t o d e f i n e themselves  i n terms o f t h e i r  present  o c c u p a t i o n s ( a s businessmen, government workers, t e a c h e r s , c a r p e t weavers, g o l d s m i t h s , e t c . ) .  Government o f f i c e r s enjoy g r e a t p r e s t i g e  i n t h e Dharmsala community, a s t h e i r s e r v i c e i s g e n e r a l l y thought t o i n c l u d e s e l f - s a c r i f i c e i n t h e i n t e r e s t o f t h e g r e a t e r T i b e t a n common good.  Those who have become v e r y s u c c e s s f u l a t b u s i n e s s enjoy an  upward m o b i l i t y i n Dharmsala s o c i e t y , but they a r e unable, n o n e t h e l e s s , t o a c q u i r e the t i t l e o f sku-drag r e s e r v e d f o r those o f n o b l e The  ( a r i s t o c r a t ) , which i s  birth.  r e f u g e e s i t u a t i o n has, however, s t i m u l a t e d many young  Tibetans t o reassess the v a l i d i t y of the claims t o p r i v i l e g e s o c c a s i o n a l l y p r e s e n t e d by a r i s t o c r a t i c T i b e t a n f a m i l i e s . abound a s t o t h e wealth brought  out o f T i b e t by c e r t a i n f a m i l i e s , who  now c l a i m p o v e r t y when they attempt children.  Rumours  to obtain scholarships f o r their  Opportunities f o r higher education are severely l i m i t e d ,  33  and,  as Nowak  cogently  observes:  young T i b e t a n s today regard t h e i r government's p o l i c i e s o f appointments and a l l o c a t i o n s w i t h wary concern, always on the l o o k o u t f o r any evidence o f f a v o r i t i s m i n g e n e r a l and nepotism In p a r t i c u l a r (1984:108).  v  C o l l e g e s c h o l a r s h i p s can l e a d to p r e s t i g i o u s government j o b s o r to teaching p o s i t i o n s a t p r e s t i g i o u s s c h o o l s Children's V i l l a g e .  Thus, e d u c a t i o n  i s a f f o r d i n g the p o s s i b i l i t y o f  augmenting the c r i t e r i a by which T i b e t a n s  The  such as the T i b e t a n  define social status.  S o c i a l E p i c e n t e r s o f Upper Dharmsala  The  varying  formation first  topography o f Upper Dharmsala has c o n t r i b u t e d  o f f i v e s o c i a l e p i c e n t e r s o f the T i b e t a n p o p u l a t i o n .  to the The  i s t h a t o f the main temple, the D a l a i Lama's p a l a c e , the  Buddhist  S c h o o l o f D i a l e c t i c s , and Rnam-rgyal Monastery.  incorporates  the Tibetan  library,  dormitories  The second  f o r students  of Tibetan  Buddhism and T i b e t a n o f f i c e workers, and the T i b e t a n Government buildings.  These o f f i c e b u i l d i n g s a r e r e f e r r e d to as "Gangs-skyid"  or "a p l e a s i n g view o f the snow mountains", and the young government 3  employees a r e c a l l e d  the "Gangs-skyid boys"  by o t h e r  groups ( v e r y few women serve as government employees). h i g h p r e s t i g e i n the e x i l e community considered  Tibetan They  enjoy  throughout I n d i a because they a r e  to be s e r v i n g the T i b e t a n cause ( s e e Nowak 1984).  The  t h i r d e p i c e n t e r i s the T i b e t a n C h i l d r e n ' s V i l l a g e w i t h perhaps two thousand c h i l d r e n , one hundred t e a c h e r s , and s t a f f members.  Teachers  at  the TCV a l s o enjoy h i g h p r e s t i g e i n the T i b e t a n community s i n c e  the  s c h o o l c u r r e n t l y has the r e p u t a t i o n of being the b e s t and the most well-endowed T i b e t a n s c h o o l .  The TCV teachers and the  employees earn s i m i l a r s a l a r i e s  (about R s . 300 -  the TCV teachers have the d i s t i n c t advantage of the s c h o o l w h i l e  350 per month), free  but  room and board  at  the government employees c o n t r i b u t e R s . 100 o r more  per month i n o r d e r to dine a t The f o u r t h e p i c e n t e r (formerly  government  is  the G a n g s - s k y i d "mess". the T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e o f P e r f o r m i n g A r t s  the T i b e t a n M u s i c , Dance, and Drama S o c i e t y ) .  This  i n s t i t u t i o n was e s t a b l i s h e d by the D a l a i Lama some two months a f t e r his f l i g h t  to I n d i a i n M a r c h , 1959,  institution  organized in e x i l e .  and was,  thus,  twenties,  students of  students a t  and a l l  a r e c o n s i d e r e d to be this  institute,  c l a s s i f i c a t i o n which i n c o r p o r a t e s both c h i l d r e n and a d u l t were p r o v i d e d f r e e The f i f t h and f i n a l l i v i n g here f o r  a  performers,  room and board b u t were p a i d o n l y R s . 30 per month. epicenter  is  t h a t of McLeod Ganj p r o p e r .  the most p a r t run s m a l l s h o p s , r e s t a u r a n t s ,  h o t e l s , o r work In  Tibetan  But the young m u s i c i a n s and dancers  of T I P A , most o f whom a r e i n t h e i r the i n s t i t u t e ,  the f i r s t  Tibetans and  the c a r p e t f a c t o r y weaving c a r p e t s and  manufacturing small t o u r i s t  items f o r l o c a l s a l e and e x p o r t .  The  4 T i b e t a n Youth Congress holds i t s  has a s h o p , p r i n t s  meetings h e r e .  McLeod Ganj  i t s newspaper, and  i s a l s o where one f i n d s  T i b e t a n A s t r o - M e d i c a l Center and the c l i n i c s o f  the  two d i s t i n g u i s h e d  Tibetan medical p h y s i c i a n s . The young men o f  these e p i c e n t e r s are c o n s t a n t r i v a l s .  p o p u l a r f i e l d of c o m p e t i t i o n i s s p o r t s .  To t h i s  end,  teams  One  r e p r e s e n t i n g each o f the e p i c e n t e r s , w i t h complex, a r e o r g a n i z e d , and c o m p e t i t i o n s occasionally,  i n t r a c k and f i e l d  occasionally j o i n play  i n b a s k e t b a l l , s o c c e r , and,  are held.  Some young monks  the McLeod Ganj team, and the D i a l e c t i c a l S c h o o l may  the Rnam-rgyal Monastery monks.  competition,  the e x c e p t i o n o f the temple  Another p o p u l a r  f i e l d of  one t h a t i s n o t pursued by the young monks, i s f o r  spouses. J o k i n g and common aphorisms abound i n regard  to t h i s  event.  L o c a l adage has i t t h a t young women who work i n the McLeod Ganj c a r p e t f a c t o r y wish to marry T i b e t a n s 1960's, when T i b e t a n refugees  i n the I n d i a n army. were b e g i n n i n g  I n the e a r l y  to s e t t l e i n I n d i a ,  T i b e t a n men who j o i n e d the I n d i a n army had s u b s t a n t i a l incomes i n r e l a t i o n to o t h e r T i b e t a n s . prospects.  They were, t h e r e f o r e , a t t r a c t i v e m a r r i a g e  These days, however, T i b e t a n men w i t h army c a r e e r s a r e  d e s i r e d c h i e f l y by the l e s s s o p h i s t i c a t e d and l e s s educated young T i b e t a n women. The  "Gangs-skyid boys" r e p o r t e d l y d e s i r e  a t t r a c t i v e wives.  well-educated,  Though t h e i r p r e s t i g e i s h i g h i n the community,  however, "everyone knows" t h a t t h e i r s a l a r i e s a r e meager, n o t sufficient  to m a i n t a i n a non-working w i f e .  women who a r e the most h i g h l y p r i z e d by both TCV  male teachers a r e TCV female t e a c h e r s .  I n Dharmsala, the young "Gangs-skyid boys" and The mutual p r e f e r e n c e f o r  these women on the p a r t o f two e p i c e n t e r s has o f t e n l e d to m i l d c o n f r o n t a t i o n s where "Gangs-skyid boys" have accused  the TGV male  teachers o f h o a r d i n g  the women f o r themselves, o r where TCV male  teachers have l o c k e d  the doors to the h a l l where a p a r t y i s b e i n g  36 h e l d , p r e v e n t i n g the "Gangs-skyid female  female  what she deemed t h e i r pronounced c o q u e t t i s h b e h a v i o u r .  teachers must e x e r c i s e c a u t i o n i n t h e i r a f f a i r s ,  s i n c e the a d m i n i s t r a t i o n expects in  however,  them to m a i n t a i n c i r c u m s p e c t  images  the community.^ The young women performers  o f TIPA, s i n g l e d o u t f o r t h e i r  a r e a l s o c o n s i d e r e d to be v e r y m a r r i a g e a b l e .  European T i b e t a n s o r Westerners. are most l i k e l y  wealthy  merchants,  The young men, on the o t h e r hand,  to marry o t h e r TIPA p e r f o r m e r s .  o f Rs. 30 per month, TIPA male performers Ganj p a r e n t s  beauty,  They may easily»become  the wives o f h i g h T i b e t a n government o f f i c i a l s ,  The  One TCV  teacher d e s c r i b e d h e r peers' awareness o f t h e i r m a r r i a g e a b l i t y  as f o s t e r i n g TCV  boys" from e n t e r i n g .  With t h e i r  salaries  a r e n o t c o n s i d e r e d by McLeod  to be p r o s p e c t i v e grooms f o r t h e i r  u  daughters.  Indian I n t e r f a c e  T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala enjoy, on the whole, good s o c i a l with t h e i r Indian neighbors. i n f l u x o f Tibetans  Lower Dharmsala prospered w i t h the  to the a r e a i n 1960;  many new b u s i n e s s e s emerged to  c a t e r to the T i b e t a n p o p u l a t i o n and to Western t o u r i s t s . t o u r i s t s and p i l g r i m s come to Dharmsala to v i s i t Bhagsunath, as w e l l as to v i s i t McLeod G a n j .  relations  Indian  the S h i v a temple and  the main T i b e t a n B u d d h i s t  Moreover, I n d i a n s o f t e n seek m e d i c a l  temple In  treatment a t the  T i b e t a n Astro-Medical Center. Tibetans, i n turn, f l o c k  to H i n d i movies shown i n lower  Dharmsala, and l o v e H i n d i f i l m songs.  Many young T i b e t a n women a r e  taken with  the romantic  image o f H i n d i f i l m s t a r s , and d e c o r a t e  w a l l s w i t h p i c t u r e s o f these s t a r s .  their  Most Dharmsala T i b e t a n s a r e  f a m i l i a r w i t h one f i l m s t a r , K a b i r B e d i , whose mother funded the f i r s t s c h o o l f o r T i b e t a n monks i n e x i l e .  S e v e r a l middle-aged T i b e t a n women  showed me photographs taken i n the 1960's o f themselves wearing  Indian  s a r i s , and a few young T i b e t a n g i r l s on r a r e o c c a s i o n a p p l y a t l k a mark (a d o t o f r e d paste a p p l i e d to the forehead  as a s i g n o f Hindu  r i t u a l b l e s s i n g , o r , as Is the case here, as a beauty mark a p p l i e d by I n d i a n women) to t h e i r foreheads female f i l m Life  i n emulation  of t h e i r f a v o r i t e Hindi  stars.  i n e x i l e has a l s o f o r c e d T i b e t a n women to adapt to the more  s t r i n g e n t n o t i o n s o f modesty h e l d by women o f n o r t h e r n I n d i a .  Tibetan  9  women, f o r example, no l o n g e r bare t h e i r b r e a s t s when strenuous  l a b o r i n the heat.  performing  They have a l s o adopted the h a b i t o f  wearing l o n g pajama bottoms, even i n h o t weather, under customary d r e s s , the phyu-pa (chupa),  their  as i s the custom o f I n d i a n women  who wear long pants under l o n g o v e r s h i r t s (an a l t e r n a t i v e costume to the  sari). Gaddhis comprise a d i s t i n c t e t h n i c c a t e g o r y o f the I n d i a n  p o p u l a t i o n i n and around Dharmsala, s i n c e they a r e e s s e n t i a l l y mountain-dwelling  pastoralists.  Nostalgic Tibetans  Gaddhis by v i r t u e o f t h e i r o c c u p a t i o n and h a b i t a t .  identify  with  Gaddhis, who  sell  t h e i r m i l k and eggs to T i b e t a n r e s t a u r a n t s and housewives, and animals to Dharmsala markets, have a l s o enjoyed a r r i v a l o f the T i b e t a n s .  a marked p r o s p e r i t y w i t h t h e  One p o i n t o f c o n t e n t i o n t h a t does a r i s e  between T i b e t a n s and Gaddhis, however, i n v o l v e s T i b e t a n chang  (beer)  vendors.  Several Tibetans  a government l i c e n s e .  i n Dharmsala brew chang and s e l l  O c c a s i o n a l l y , Gaddhi men spend household  budgets a t the chang houses. police,  i t without  the p o l i c e re-double  When t h e i r wives then complain their efforts  to the  to c l o s e the chang  businesses.  The Western I n t e r f a c e  A p a r t from b e i n g live  the r e s i d e n c e o f s e v e r a l thousand T i b e t a n s who  i n f i v e s o c i a l e p i c e n t e r s , Upper Dharmsala i s the r e s i d e n c e o f  the D a l a i Lama and the c a p i t a l o f T i b e t i n e x i l e . Dharmsala has a v i r t u a l l y continuous  As such, Upper  stream o f r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s from  i n t e r n a t i o n a l wire s e r v i c e s , the B r i t i s h B r o a d c a s t i n g  Corporation,  Newsweek, Time, the F a r E a s t e r n Economic Review, A s i a Weekly, Per S t e r n , v a r i o u s f i l m makers, s c h o l a r s , dharraa merchants, people  s e e k i n g T i b e t a n medical  students,  cures, and p i l g r i m s from  L a h u l - S p i t i , Ladakh, Mon (NEFA), and the T i b e t a n  settlements.  The Western p o p u l a t i o n o f Upper Dharmsala f a l l s three c a t e g o r i e s .  The f i r s t c a t e g o r y  second c a t e g o r y  for  years  students and  Into  i s t h a t o f s c h o l a r s and students  of T i b e t a n Buddhism who g e n e r a l l y remain u n t i l The  roughly  their visas expire.  i s t h a t o f Commonwealth c i t i z e n s who have l i v e d  i n the neighborhood.  Some o f these  residents are also  o f T i b e t a n Buddhism, some a r e simply a t t r a c t e d to the a r e a ,  some o f them have e s t a b l i s h e d themselves as s i g n i f i c a n t  participants  i n T i b e t a n community l i f e .  The t h i r d c a t e g o r y c o u l d be  d e s c r i b e d as t h a t o f s e a s o n a l Western t o u r i s t s .  These Westerners  u s u a l l y f l o c k t o p l a c e s such as Dharmsala, R i s h i k e s h , and Kashmir to escape the heat of the I n d i a n p l a i n s from A p r i l t o September.  The  i n t e r a c t i o n s between T i b e t a n s and Westerners i n Upper Dharmsala c o u l d be c h a r a c t e r i z e d as very f r i e n d l y , but the presence o f the l a t t e r i n Upper Dharmsala p r o v i d e s ample o p p o r t u n i t y f o r each group t o upon the n a t u r e of the The  reflect  other.  h e i g h t of the t o u r i s t season i s from the l a t t e r p a r t of March  t o the b e g i n n i n g  of t h e monsoon i n June.  During  the t o u r i s t  season,  many I n d i a n saddhus pass through Dharmsala, some w i t h an eye to the s w e l l i n g number of Western t o u r i s t s l i k e l y t o be i n town. g e n e r a l l y w e l l - v e r s e d i n the s c h e d u l i n g of important events,  such as the Mon  Lama a f t e r Lo-gsar,  Lam  Tibetan  Buddhist  t e a c h i n g s g i v e n i n the temple by the D a l a i  T i b e t a n New  Year.  l i n e the road to the temple, e x t e n d i n g  Consequently, hundreds t h e i r alms cups to  a r r i v i n g to r e c e i v e r e l i g i o u s t e a c h i n g s . a s c e t i c s , h o l y men,  Saddhus a r e  A few  stop.  those  saddhus, Hindu  and/or t a n t r i c p r a c t i t i o n e r s , may  y o g i c f e a t s by the McLeod Ganj bus  may  also  perform  Though saddhus w i l l  e n r a p t u r e Western t o u r i s t s when they do so, T i b e t a n s w i l l g e n e r a l l y a v e r t t h e i r eyes or t r y t o pay  l i t t l e attention.  T i b e t a n s assume t h a t  saddhus have powers which might prove dangerous. T o u r i s t s have been the major c o n t r i b u t o r s t o the p r o s p e r i t y of McLeod Ganj and  the p r o s p e r i t y of Dharmsala i n g e n e r a l .  McLeod Ganj i n May,  1981,  When I  left  t h e r e were t h i r t e e n T i b e t a n r e s t a u r a n t s ,  two  Indian restaurants, s e v e r a l tea s t a l l s , nine Tibetan t o u r i s t h o t e l s , one  I n d i a n s t a t e h o t e l , and numerous T i b e t a n shops and  o f the h o t e l s and  stalls.  Some  r e s t a u r a n t s s p o r t e d T i b e t a n names l i k e " K a i l a s h  H o t e l " , "Kokonor R e s t a u r a n t " ,  "Om  Restaurant",  and  "Kunga  Others have more Westernized names: "Green Guest House", Memory R e s t a u r a n t " , "Crazy  i t i s commonly r e f e r r e d to - "Samdup's Thukpa  " L a s t Chance", so named because i t was  restaurant along  the Bhagsu Road.  f o r the s e a s o n a l  influx of  during  American and since,  European t o u r i s t s  i n McLeod G a n j , one  music h i t s and television series,  venerable  interiors.  The  Few  remark on  hotels  the  permit  Many N o r t h this  music  to hear both the l a t e s t Western  c o u l d watch re-runs  One  r e s t a u r a n t had  of American  a v a r i e t y of other  f a r e i s purported  a  television  forms o f  With the i n t r o d u c t i o n of v i d e o - c a s s e t t e  Dharmsala, the f a v o r i t e  others  and  restaurants  the q u a l i t y of  rock-and-roll classics.  S o v i e t w r e s t l i n g , and  these  t h e i r w a l l s , while  rock or d i s c o music.  Is l i k e l y  s e t on which one  entertainment.  on  the peak season.  the d i n e r to e a t unaccompanied by  last  the orange-robed f o l l o w e r s o f  I n d i a n guru Rajneesh to b r i g h t e n t h e i r r e s t a u r a n t s are f i l l e d  the  I n 1979-1980, some of  r e s t a u r a n t s f e a t u r e d p o s t e r s of Bruce Lee waited  "Tibetan  " H o t e l T i b e t " , "Rainbow H o t e l " , "Friends"! Corner",  Horse", o r , as  P a l a c e " , and  Restaurant".  players  to be cowboy movies  to  and  mons t e r movies. Young (and style.  middle-aged) T i b e t a n men  dress f o r everyday i n Western  Blue jeans, denim j a c k e t s , down v e s t s , and  h i g h l y p r i z e d items. tourists;  down j a c k e t s a r e  Some of these a r t i c l e s are purchased  o t h e r s come from refugee a i d s o c i e t i e s .  A few  from  young women  dare to wear b l u e j e a n s , but most wear the T i b e t a n phyu-pa (chupa), s l e e v e d or s l e e v e l e s s c l o a k .  The  s k i r t of t h i s c l o a k i s h i t c h e d  t i g h t l y a t the back o f the w a i s t , p r o v i d i n g the wearer w i t h  two  deep  a  41 back p l e a t s which permit  f r e e and e l e g a n t movement.  In T i b e t , a  woman's phyu-pa was a voluminous garment which allowed of pregnancy.  f o r the swell  I n e x i l e , however, o n l y o l d e r o r pregnant women wear  the t r a d i t i o n a l v e r s i o n .  Young women p r e f e r t h e i r phyu-pas t o be  p r e c i s e l y t a i l o r e d and t i g h t - f i t t i n g . Men's phyu-pas a r e always s l e e v e d and s h o r t e r than a r e women's. The  l e n g t h and number o f f o l d s i n t h e back o f a man's phyu-pa may  i n d i c a t e h i s o f f i c e , age, and r e g i o n a l d e r i v a t i o n .  Young men do n o t  r e j e c t t h i s n a t i o n a l garment, but tend t o wear i t on o f f i c i a l and r e l i g i o u s occasions.  The f a i l u r e o f these  "cosmopolitan"  Dharmsala  T i b e t a n s t o appear r e g u l a r l y on McLeod Ganj s t r e e t s i n e x c l u s i v e l y t r a d i t i o n a l garb has d i s a p p o i n t e d a number o f t o u r i s t s and journalists.  A young female photographer who was attempting  t o put  t o g e t h e r a photo-documentary on T i b e t a n s i n e x i l e , c o n f i d e d t o me t h a t whenever she s i g h t e d , through t h e l e n s o f h e r camera, a p a i r o f b l u e jeans on a T i b e t a n , t h e camera " a u t o m a t i c a l l y " turned  away.  She  decided  t h a t t h e monks were t h e o n l y a u t h e n t i c r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f  Tibet.  A N a t i o n a l Geographic photographer turned  and was unable t o f i n d what he c o n s i d e r e d f a c e s " t o photograph.  up i n McLeod Ganj  t o be " t r a d i t i o n a l  Tibetan  As a l a s t r e s o r t , he approached t h e d i r e c t o r o f  TIPA and asked t o photograph t h e p e r f o r m e r s i n t h e i r costumes. a n t h r o p o l o g i s t who a r r i v e d i n McLeod Ganj s h o r t l y a f t e r my  An  departure,  commented t o a f r i e n d o f mine, a f t e r a s t a y o f o n l y a few weeks, t h a t the T i b e t a n s  i n McLeod Ganj had o n l y a "memory c u l t u r e " and t h a t  T i b e t a n t r a d i t i o n s had o b v i o u s l y f a d e d . student  o f T i b e t a n Buddhism c l a i m e d  A s o c i o l o g i s t who was a  t h a t he never e n t e r e d  a restaurant  42 i n McLeod Ganj s i n c e one was c e r t a i n t o c o n t r a c t h e p a t i t i s i n such places.  He p r e f e r r e d t o e a t a t a dharma s t u d e n t s ' mess near the  T i b e t a n L i b r a r y , and passed  through McLeod Ganj o n l y w i t h o t h e r  dharma  s t u d e n t s on t h e i r way up t o a m e d i t a t i o n house b e l o n g i n g t o a Western Buddhist  organzation.  A f t e r spending  approximately  two and o n e - h a l f y e a r s i n the f i e l d ,  I d i d not share the i m p r e s s i o n s o f t h e s e other Western v i s i t o r s . sensed  even b e f o r e I a r r i v e d i n McLeod Ganj t h a t my f i e l d work would  not be so easy.  On t h e one hand, McLeod Ganj was not a remote v i l l a g e  t h a t c o u l d be reached boasted  I  o n l y a f t e r a week's t r e k from an a i r p o r t .  It  l u x u r i e s many f i e l d w o r k e r s can o n l y dream o f , t h e o c c a s i o n a l  hot shower, a f o u r - h o u r bus r i d e t o a t r a i n s t a t i o n , a  fourteen-hour  bus r i d e t o D e l h i , good f o o d , an i n v i g o r a t i n g c l i m a t e coupled w i t h m a g n i f i c e n t scenery, a c o s m o p o l i t a n atmosphere, " f r i e n d l y n a t i v e s " , and the p o s s i b i l i t y o f speaking t o another Westerner i f one so wished. On the o t h e r hand, McLeod Ganj o r Upper Dharmsala, does not p r e s e n t i t s e l f as a v i l l a g e whose i n h a b i t a n t s a r e homogeneous i n d i a l e c t , r e g i o n a l o r i g i n , o r n a i v e t e towards s c h o l a r s .  Westerners have been  coming t o Dharmsala as r e f u g e e a i d s o c i e t y workers, h e a l t h s e r v i c e p r o f e s s i o n a l s , sponsors, t o u r i s t s , j o u r n a l i s t s , and s c h o l a r s s i n c e 1960.  Students o f T i b e t a n Buddhism began t o a r r i v e i n number i n the  e a r l y 1970's, when t h e L i b r a r y o f T i b e t a n Works and A r c h i v e s began t o o f f e r courses.  Thus, many r e s i d e n t s ( T i b e t a n and o t h e r w i s e ) o f Upper  Dharmsala have f i r m n o t i o n s o f what s c h o l a r s study or what i s r e l e v a n t to  scholarly interest.  C e r t a i n T i b e t a n s such as major o r a c l e s , lamas,  and p h y s i c i a n s have been b e s i e g e d w i t h q u e s t i o n s from both s e r i o u s and  43 i d l e seekers.  A c c o r d i n g l y , they have e s s e n t i a l l y s t a n d a r d i z e d  their  answers o r become adept a t d i s m i s s i n g i n q u i r i e s . T i b e t a n s a r e q u i t e w e l l - v e r s e d i n t h e i r p r e s e n t a t i o n of s e l f ,  and  c o n s c i o u s o f the p r o l i f e r a t i o n s o f t h e i r "image" i n world o p i n i o n . C e r t a i n techniques of f i e l d A l t h o u g h I requested and  r e s e a r c h a r e , thus, simply not  r e c e i v e d p e r m i s s i o n to t a p e - r e c o r d  applicable. specific  i n t e r v i e w s , I d i s c o v e r e d t h a t I c o u l d n o t walk o r s i t about with a s p i r a l notebook, and w r i t e i n f r o n t of o t h e r s . I was  c a u t i o n e d , "would make people nervous."  T h i s type of a c t i v i t y , Questionnaires  and  s t a t i s t i c a l surveys r e p r e s e n t o t h e r f u t i l e r e s e a r c h s t r a t e g i e s f o r Dharmsala.  A Western d o c t o r working i n McLeod Ganj was  the m e d i c a l  treatment c h o i c e s of T i b e t a n s , and wished  interested  In  to g a i n some  u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the frequency of and c o n t e x t f o r a p p l i c a t i o n to d i v i n e r s and o r a c l e s .  To  t h i s end,  employed both T i b e t a n nurses who  he developed  worked w i t h him a t h i s c l i n i c  young T i b e t a n s on l e a v e from c o l l e g e to conduct dismay, however, he  found  the s u r v e y .  t h a t the T i b e t a n nurses denied  o r a c l e s e x i s t e d i n Dharmsala, and e n t h u s i a s t i c about t h e i r t a s k .  and  To h i s  t h a t any  the c o l l e g e s t u d e n t s were not  These students r e p o r t e d to the d o c t o r  t h a t the McLeod Ganj T i b e t a n s were not i n c l i n e d T i b e t a n s a l s o have t h e i r own  to respond  view of Westerners.  and v a r i o u s r e f u g e e a i d s o c i e t y workers who 1960's, a s s i s t i n g  a q u e s t i o n n a i r e , and  to s u r v e y s .  The Red  Cross  were on hand i n the e a r l y  the r e f u g e e s , prompted the T i b e t a n s to d e v i s e a  nickname f o r those people pag-pa rgyu-ma" o r "USA  (especially  pork sausage".  disparaging but nonetheless  those who A less  were American) physically  s i g n i f i c a n t l a b e l a p p l i e d to most  "USA  Westerners by T i b e t a n s "Ursu").  i s " I n j e e " (Russians  " I n j e e " n e a t l y combines " E n g l i s h speaker" w i t h  " f o r e i g n e r " i n H i n d i and range from p o s i t i v e cautioned  a r e r e f e r r e d to as  Urdu.  The  to n e g a t i v e .  t h a t an " I n j e e "  connotations  c a r r i e d by  should be  this  or label  When T i b e t a n s c h o o l c h i l d r e n a r e  i s coming,  they may  well associate  " I n j e e " w i t h a sbyin-bdag or sponsor, a Westerner who s c h o o l i n g and  "farengee"  the  sponsors  their  respected.  However, " I n j e e Sgom-pa" - a Western monastery, " I n j e e a n i " f o r a Western nun,  and  " I n j e e grwa-pa" - a Western monk, a r e a l l  d e s i g n a t i o n s which tend Tibetans  to impugn the s t a t u s of the  do r e s p e c t Westerners who  monastic dress  i f they c o n s i d e r  of Buddhism who  isolate  take monastic vows and  the Westerners to be  r o l e of a monk o r nun  serious  students  with  the Westerner who  f o r a few weeks.  and  But a number of  likes  to t r y out  " I n j e e " becomes an  d i s p a r a g i n g a d j e c t i v e when a p p l i e d by T i b e t a n parents s c h o o l teachers  adopt  themselves from the b u s t l e of McLeod Ganj  s u b s i s t on a d i e t o f tsamba, r o a s t e d b a r l e y f l o u r . Tibetans are acquainted  signified.  the  extremely  or by monk  to s t y l e of d r e s s , h a i r , music, dance, and  parties  enjoyed by young T i b e t a n s . A l t h o u g h disco-dances time I l e f t Tibetans.  the f i e l d , A young TCV  h e l d i n McLeod G a n j . McLeod Ganj peered the dance was  were bi-weekly a f f a i r s  they c o n t i n u e lady  teacher  According  i n Dharmsala a t  the  to I n s p i r e the o b j e c t i o n s of some described  the f i r s t such dances  to her, a l l of the o l d people of  through the windows o f the T i b e t a n r e s t a u r a n t where  b e i n g h e l d , and  event to the parents  (who  conveyed unfavourable  r e p o r t s of  might be l i v i n g i n o t h e r s e t t l e m e n t s )  the of  the  45 dancers.  Some T i b e t a n mothers i n s t r u c t t h e i r s m a l l c h i l d r e n to c r y  " I n j e e Gdug-chag" ("Bad I n j e e " ) to Westerners path from McLeod Ganj to a TIPA dance. dances have proved people  who might walk up the  But, on the o t h e r hand, d i s c o  to be s u c c e s s f u l fund r a i s e r s , and these days many  t r y to a r r a n g e  them.  - An i n t e r e s t i n g l a b e l a p p l i e d  to Westerners  d e r i v e s from T i b e t a n  cosmology. For a j o k e , TIPA students began to r e f e r to non-Tibetans as klu,  the sub-human guardians o f w e a l t h , water, l a n d , and f e r t i l i t y .  I n the T i b e t a n opera Pema Womba (Pad-ma 'Aod-'abar), c o l o r e d k l u s i n k the s h i p b e l o n g i n g to the hero's performers, classify  different  father.  The TIPA  t a k i n g these k l u as t h e i r r e f e r e n c e p o i n t s , d e c i d e d to  f o r e i g n e r s a c c o r d i n g to c o l o r o f k l u .  Hence, Europeans  became red k l u , Americans became y e l l o w k l u , A f r i c a n s became b l a c k k l u , and A s i a n s became white k l u . p r e s e n t s non-Tibetans  T h i s symbolic l i n k i n g ,  thus,  as sub-human b u t p o w e r f u l , n o t c o m p l e t e l y  s e n t i e n t , q u i c k to anger, wealthy,  obsessed w i t h hygiene, and people  to whom one should show r e s p e c t and around  whom one must e x e r c i s e  caution.  F u r t h e r E x p l o r a t i o n s o f the Western-Tibetan I n t e r f a c e  DeVoe (1983), a f t e r i n v e s t i g a t i n g  the success o f the T i b e t a n  refugee community i n c o n t i n u i n g to secure s u b s t a n t i a l amounts o f f u n d i n g from  i n t e r n a t i o n a l a i d o r g a n i z a t i o n s , has concluded  continued i n t e r n a t i o n a l a i d may be understood t h e o r i e s o f g i f t exchange.  that  i n l i g h t o f Maussian  Where T i b e t a n s d i s t i n g u i s h  themselves  from  o t h e r refugee groups In q u a l i f y i n g as "worthy" r e c i p i e n t s i n g e n u i t y a t " r e t u r n i n g " the donor's g i f t , for  example, i s the c o m p l e t i o n of a new  sponsored  c h i l d w i t h h i s o r her new  r e c e p t i o n f o r the donor's v i s i t the g i f t g i v e n i s b e i n g put suggests the  whether t h i s r e t u r n g i f t ,  classroom, a photograph of a  item o f c l o t h i n g , o r an o r g a n i z e d  to I n d i a , the donor i s a s s u r e d  to the donor's intended use.  t h a t t h i s assurance,  is in their  DeVoe  i n whatever m a n i f e s t a t i o n , complements  gift. However, she a l s o c i t e s the i n c o n g r u i t y o f T i b e t a n and  understandings r e s u l t s from  of g i f t exchange.  the e x p e c t a t i o n on  T h i s i n c o n g r u i t y , as we  Western  shall  the p a r t of Westerners and  serves as the i d e n t i c a l symbolic o p e r a t o r f o r  fundamentally  d i s t i n c t " p r e s t i g e systems" ( B u r r i d g e 1969:133).  A c l a s s i c example of what DeVoe r e f e r s dissonance  i n T i b e t a n and Western u n d e r s t a n d i n g  (1983:108) was c h i l d ' s sponsor  o c c a s i o n e d by  the " b a s i c  of g i f t  exchange"  the a r r i v a l of a Westerner who  enrolled.  s p e c t a c l e s when the sponsor  audience  two  was  one  (sbyin-bdag o r " g i f t - g i v e r " ) i n the s c h o o l complex  where the c h i l d was  (clothing,  to as  see,  Tibetans  t h a t the g i f t  the  that  These o c c a s i o n s can r i s e  to minor  unbundles h i s o r her bounty o f  food, watches, toys) intended f o r one  including non-recipient children.  gifts  c h i l d b e f o r e an  I n one  particular  case,  sponsor  was d i s t r e s s e d to c a t c h ' h i s ' " T i b e t a n c h i l d s h a r i n g amongst h i s f r i e n d s the p r e s e n t s the sponsor had j u s t g i v e n him. Here, the young s t u d e n t had i n a d v e r t e n t l y d i s c o v e r e d h i s sponsor's r u l e — t h a t the g i f t s he g i v e s a r e s i n g u l a r l y d i r e c t e d to him and n o t to be shared or...passed down the l i n e (1983:112).  The  sponsor's e x p e c t a t i o n s  c e r t a i n extent,  devolve  of a r e t u r n on h i s g i f t would, t o a  from h i s a c t i v e p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n and  a n t i c i p a t i o n of p r e s e n t i n g the g i f t i m p o r t a n t l y , DeVoe suggests,  to the c h i l d .  the knowledge t h a t the sponsored  would take e x c l u s i v e d e l i g h t i n the g i f t s i g n i f i c a n t r e t u r n on h i s According  But more child  p r o v i d e s the sponsor w i t h  gift.  t o the donor's p r e s t i g e system, the c h i l d ' s s t a t u s  would be enhanced by h i s or her e x c l u s i v e p o s s e s s i o n  of the g i f t .  the T i b e t a n c o n t e x t , however, the Western sponsor c o u l d be viewed denying the c h i l d line."  the r i g h t to pass p a r t or a l l of the g i f t  T h i s d e n i a l prevents  from assuming the h i g h e r initiator  a  of g i f t s  the c h i l d  (and,  i n d i r e c t l y , the  In as  "down the sponsor)  s t a t u s T i b e t a n i d e o l o g y would c o n f e r upon the  "passed down the  line".  A second example a r i s e s from a t h r e e month s e s s i o n of dharma t e a c h i n g s h e l d February through A p r i l 1982, dharma o r g a n i z a t i o n . o r g a n i z a t i o n maintains initiations  The  and  sponsored by a Western  t e a c h i n g s were h e l d i n Dharmsala, where the  a c e n t r e , and  c o n s i s t e d of a graded s e r i e s of  (dbang) g i v e n by prominent T i b e t a n lamas ( i n c l u d i n g  the D a l a i Lama).  The  p r e l i m i n a r y t e a c h i n g s were h e l d i n the main  temple i n Dharmsala, w h i l e more advanced t e a c h i n g s were conducted a t the dharma c e n t r e  itself.  DeVoe d e s c r i b e s the t e a c h i n g of Buddhism as "one gifts  one  of the  highest  can g i v e " (1983:108) i n T i b e t a n s o c i e t y :  P a t t e r n e d on the o l d T i b e t a n way, T i b e t a n r e f u g e e s i n the f i n a n c i a l p o s i t i o n t o do so w i l l sponsor t e a c h i n g s . That means they w i l l pay the lamas' expenses and f e e s f o r p u t t i n g on the t e a c h i n g and c a l l f o r the p u b l i c t o a t t e n d , u s u a l l y  48 g i v i n g refreshments a f t e r w a r d s . In the T i b e t a n custom, everyone i s welcome t o hear the t e a c h i n g s . Some may make t h e i r own o f f e r i n g s of items o r rupees when the t e a c h i n g i s over, but by no means w i l l a l l do t h i s , nor i s i t a f i x e d and mandatory f e e (1983:108).  The  p r e l i m i n a r y t e a c h i n g s provoked amazement i n the T i b e t a n  community and c o n s i d e r a b l e c o n t r o v e r s y when T i b e t a n s d i s c o v e r e d the dharma o r g a n i z a t i o n c o n t r o l l e d a c c e s s t o them.  The  how  dharma  o r g a n i z a t i o n s t a t i o n e d i t s " t i c k e t - t a k e r s " a t a l l temple e n t r y p o i n t s . These " t i c k e t - t a k e r s " demanded s t u b s of any Westerners attempting g a i n a c c e s s to the temple to hear the t e a c h i n g s ; the s t u b s being of payment by would-be i n i t i a t e s t o the t e a c h i n g s . were exempted from having t o produce any  s t u b s , i t was  T i b e t a n s who  the f i r s t inside  witnessed  Westerners p h y s i c a l l y r e s t r a i n e d from e n t e r i n g the temple by " t i c k e t - t a k e r s " were shocked a t t h i s new T i b e t a n Buddhism.  time the  several the  Western i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of  T h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n maintained  t e a c h i n g , each i n d i v i d u a l had  proof  While T i b e t a n s  t h a t Westerners outnumbered T i b e t a n s a t a r e l i g i o u s event main temple ( T i b e t a n Review :1982b).  to  that "to r e c e i v e a  to o f f e r or g i v e the same amount of  money" (1983:109). T h i s new  Western i n t e r p r e t a t i o n broke the " e t h i c a l l y  acceptable  code of o f f e r e d t e a c h i n g s " among T i b e t a n s - t h a t "those endowed w i t h the wealth o f f e r t o sponsor  the t e a c h i n g s ; the lamas i n t u r n a r e  t h u s l y i n a p o s i t i o n to o f f e r the t e a c h i n g s to a l l who (1983:109).  DeVoe h i g h l i g h t s what she r e f e r s t o as  seek i t "  the v i o l a t i o n of  a " t a c i t r u l e of g i f t exchange by p i c k i n g out those who  'deserved'  t e a c h i n g by how  Furthermore,  much they had o  paid f o r i t "  (1983:110).  the  49 the payments f o r itself,  the  teachings were absorbed by the dharma c e n t r e  and were not p r e s e n t e d to the " r e v e r e d lamas who gave  teachings i n the temple!"  (1983:110).  DeVoe notes t h a t T i b e t a n s never s t i p u l a t e public religious  t h a t r e c i p i e n t s of a  t e a c h i n g must somehow " q u a l i f y "  r o l e by p u r c h a s i n g a  themselves f o r  the  ticket.  -a  R e g a r d l e s s of the l e v e l o f u n d e r s t a n d i n g i n d i v i d u a l s come i n t o a t e a c h i n g w i t h , a l l who hear i t w i l l b e n e f i t i n some way from i t , T i b e t a n s s a y , and t h e i r v e r y attendance w i l l i n t u r n c o n t r i b u t e to the betterment of a l l o t h e r human b e i n g s (1983:110).  Thus,  the dharma c e n t r e i n q u e s t i o n v i o l a t e d  To extend the i m p l i c a t i o n s of  this v i o l a t i o n a b i t  c e n t r e might be seen as f a i l i n g hierarchical principles. "offer  to s u b s c r i b e to r e q u i s i t e  and " g i v e down" (dge-ba  the dharma  Tibetan  gtong-ba).  the dharma c e n t r e members, the would-be sponsors of  the t e a c h i n g s , was more untoward f o r t h e i r to " t r i c k l e  further,  These p r i n c i p l e s e n j o i n the sponsor to both  up" (mchod-pa p u l - b a )  The behaviour of  the norms of g i v i n g .  r e f u s a l to a l l o w  the  gift  down".  The c o n c l u s i o n of  this  three month course of dharma i n s t r u c t i o n  p r o v i d e s a t h i r d example of " b a s i c d i s s o n a n c e " i n T i b e t a n and Western u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f g i f t exchange, an example which DeVoe does n o t m e n t i o n , b u t one which s t i r r e d c o n s i d e r a b l e c o n t r o v e r s y and a f i v e - m o n t h s p a t e of l e t t e r s  to  the e d i t o r of  the T i b e t a n Review.  The i n c i d e n t o c c u r r e d d u r i n g a d i s c o - d a n c e g i v e n a t  the T i b e t a n  I n s t i t u t e of P e r f o r m i n g A r t s and intended as a b e n e f i t  for  the dharma  c e n t r e which sponsored the t e a c h i n g s . i n c l u d e d approximately  300  Those a t t e n d i n g the dance  Westerners, and among those  number of Western dharma students who month course and who Now,  anyone may  had  had  r e c e i v e d s e v e r a l dbangs  higher teachings, The  monastic vows. adoption of  participated  of these vows was  the h a b i t s o f B u d d h i s t monks and  When the band (The however, these students  teachings  witnessed  present,  the  danced.  Several  I n c l u d i n g the e d i t o r of the T i b e t a n Review, I n subsequent weeks, p o s t e r s had  taken  to a t t e n d d i s c o - d a n c e s ,  vinaya  while  a good d e a l o f fodder f o r h i s r e p e r t o r i a l cannon.  a l l of the T i b e t a n l e t t e r s  monks" (as they came to be  those of Westerners were d i v i d e d i n o p i n i o n .  number of the T i b e t a n l e t t e r s e s s e n t i a l l y c r i t i c i z e d nuns f o r t h e i r f a i l u r e  to r e s p e c t the " g i f t "  i n i t i a t i o n s ) which had been g i v e n to them by ( t h e shedding  the Almost  i n response to the e d i t o r ' s r e p o r t were  h i g h l y c r i t i c a l o f the "dancing  disavowal  their  nuns.  shed t h e i r h a b i t s i n a backroom of  vows (the vows of i n i t i a t i o n ) not  and  these  s i g n i f i e d by  were d i s p l a y e d i n McCleod Ganj r e q u e s t i n g those who  while  into  Subterranean Vajrahammer) began to p l a y ,  t h i s costume t r a n s f o r m a t i o n .  e d i t o r found  and  to p r e l i m i n a r y  performance h a l l , donned t - s h i r t s and b l u e j e a n s , and young T i b e t a n s  three  must make c e r t a i n  i n the course d e s i r e d  therefore, formally subscribed T h e i r adoption  i n the  to be i n i t i a t e d  t h a t i s , to r e c e i v e a dbang, one  students who  i n i t i a t i o n s and,  i n order  were a  (initiations).  be p r e s e n t a t p r e l i m i n a r y Buddhist  d e r i v e b e n e f i t from such t e a c h i n g s , but  vows.  participated  300  The  called),  g i s t of a  the Western monks  (the teachings  their public  of monastic h a b i t ) of t h e i r  and  symbolic  "offering" -  their  51 monas t i c vows.  Cosmology  The p r e - B u d d h i s t Botipo T i b e t a n cosmos c o n s i s t e d o f a hierarchy:  tri-partlte  the upper world o f the white l h a ( g o d s ) ; the middle world  o f the y e l l o w gnyen ( t r e e and r o c k s p i r i t s ) and humans; and world o f the b l u e k l u .  The  l h a i n c l u d e d g r e a t e r and  the  lower  l e s s e r gods,  such as those o f the mountains as opposed to those o f the r o c k s , l o c a l p r o t e c t i v e d e i t i e s , and was  gods o f war  (dgra-lha).  i n h a b i t e d by a number of ambiguously  the b t s a n .  The middle  c a t e g o r i z e d numina such as  T u c c i (1980) f i n d s no s t r i c t demarcation  example, b t s a n and k l u .  world  between, f o r  C e r t a i n b t s a n have been d e s c r i b e d to  me,  however, as the progeny o f c r o s s - w o r l d m a r r i a g e s between humans and k l u , which would p l a c e these b t s a n as h i e r a r c h i c a l m e d i a t o r s . b t s a n a r e the ghosts o f humans who  have d i e d i n b a t t l e .  Other  Btsan,  a c c o r d i n g to a Dharmsala cave m e d i t a t o r , a r e the guardians o f one's personal I n t e g r i t y .  I f , f o r example, someone i s p e r f o r m i n g a  r e l i g i o u s r i t u a l , but  the b t s a n o b s e r v i n g the person f i n d s h i s o r her  i n t e n t i o n s q u e s t i o n a b l e , the b t s a n w i l l harm t h a t person. known to be i n t o l e r a n t and  short-tempered,  b u t t h e i r i n t e r e s t s appear  to l i e w i t h i n t e g r i t y o r l e g i t i m a c y o f one's a c t i o n s . w i l l be i l l u s t r a t e d  "Btsan", as  i n Chapter V I I I , i s a l s o a common component o f  names o f the d i v i n e T i b e t a n k i n g s . klu,  Btsan a r e  The  lower world was  the guardians o f the s o i l and water, who  r a i n , snow, h a i l , and  i n h a b i t e d by  are reponsible f o r  the f e r t i l i t y of the l a n d .  the  In r e l a t i o n to  52 humans, each l e v e l of the Bonpo cosmos c o n t a i n e d numina who e i t h e r p r o t e c t i v e or  Tibetan r i t u a l practice. cup o f chang  be  dangerous.  T h i s t r i - p a r t i t e cosmology  first  might  i s r e s p e c t e d i n everyday  contemporary  B e f o r e a T i b e t a n , f o r example, s i p s h i s  ( b a r l e y b e e r ) , he employs the t h i r d f i n g e r of h i s  l e f t hand t o f l i c k t h r e e drops of the l i q u o r i n t o the a i r .  The  first  drop i s an o f f e r i n g t o the b e i n g s of the upper w o r l d ; the second, t o those of the middle world; and the t h i r d , t o the d e n i z e n s of the lower world.  S i m i l a r l y , T i b e t a n L o - g s a r (New  Year) t r a d i t i o n d i c t a t e s  each household d i s p l a y a phye-mar on the a l t a r .  Phye-mar i s a  d e c o r a t e d wooden box d i v i d e d i n t o two compartments, one  containing  wheat f l o u r mixed w i t h b u t t e r , the o t h e r c o n t a i n i n g tsamba b a r l e y f l o u r ) mixed w i t h b u t t e r .  On the f i r s t  that  (roasted  day o f the new  year,  each household member t a k e s a p i n c h o f wheat f l o u r and f l i c k s i t t h r e e times i n the a i r w i t h the thumb and second f i n g e r of the r i g h t hand, and r e p e a t s the o f f e r i n g w i t h a p i n c h o f the b a r l e y f l o u r . paying the customary Lo-gsar v i s i t  t o the household w i l l  Anyone  be  immediately d i r e c t e d t o the f a m i l y a l t a r , where the v i s i t o r w i l l  offer  phye-mar t o the t h r e e realms as a s i g n o f f e l i c i t a t i o n s t o the household. Buddhism i n t r o d u c e d the I n d i a n pantheon t o T i b e t .  Subsequently,  each o f the t h r e e Bonpo d i v i s i o n s o f the cosmos was more or l e s s b i f u r c a t e d , y i e l d i n g s i x p o s s i b l e domains f o r a s o u l ' s r e b i r t h . domains a r e known c o l l e c t i v e l y by the S a n s k r i t term samsara.  These  The  s i x domains a r e p o r t r a y e d i c o n o g r a p h i c a l l y i n the B u d d h i s t wheel o f life.  53 In descending o r d e r of  s u p e r i o r i t y or preferred  a c c o r d i n g to common d o c t r i n a l (1)  L h a - y u l , the land o f  (2)  Lha-ma-yin-yul,  interpretation  are  the  existence following:  the gods  the l a n d o f  the w a r - l i k e  titans  (Sanskrit,  asura) (3)  Mi-yul,  the world o f humans  (4)  K l u - y u l , the realm o f  (5)  Y i - d w a g s - y u l , the realm of  (6)  Mya-ba,  (mi)  the k l u and animals the hungry ghosts  the B u d d h i s t h e l l s  With the i n t r o d u c t i o n of Buddhism to T i b e t ,  the d o c t r i n e of  the  t r a n s m i g r a t i o n of s o u l s o r metempsychosis and karma i n f l u e n c e d T i b e t a n cosmology.  A c c o r d i n g to t h i s d o c t r i n e , each s o u l (rnam-shes)  s u b j e c t e d to an e n d l e s s c y c l e of r e b i r t h s a t t a i n enlightenment,  nirvana.  (samsara)  unless i t  One i s born i n t o one of  is can  these  c o s m o l o g i c a l n i c h e s a c c o r d i n g to o n e ' s a c c u m u l a t i o n s of m e r i t (bsod-nams) and s i n ( d i k p a ) .  When a d e n i z e n o f one of  these  realms d i e s , h i s or her rnam-shes e n t e r s a l i m b o - l i k e p e r i o d known as bar-do  ("between s t a t e s " )  completion of Gshin-rje,  this period,  f o r a p e r i o d o f 49 d a y s .  the rnam-shes e n t e r s another  the L o r d o f D e a t h ,  i s supposed to weigh o n e ' s  a g a i n s t o n e ' s s i n s to determine (Schlagintweit are  thought  bar-do  1968:93), but  to be a b l e  Upon the realm. merits  the c i r c u m s t a n c e s of o n e ' s  rebirth  the p r a y e r s o f B u d d h i s t monks and lamas  to a s s i s t the rnam-shes t r a v e l i n g  through  to a c h i e v e a good r e b i r t h .  Once enlightenment  i s a c h i e v e d , however,  the s o u l can transcend  the c y c l e of r e b i r t h s a l t o g e t h e r .  I n T i b e t a n Buddhist  ideology,  however, s e v e r a l o p t i o n s o b t a i n f o r the e n l i g h t e n e d s o u l . f o r example, beings who who  have transcended  a r e not f u l l y e n l i g h t e n e d .  B o d h i s a t t v a s , and others  may  i n obtaining  There a r e ,  the realm o f r e b i r t h s ,  but  Others become human emanations o f  r e t u r n to samsara out o f compassion to a s s i s t salvation.  There i s a d i v i s i o n o f the B u d d h i s t heaven i n t o l e v e l s which e x i s t above o r d i n a r y l h a - y u l , and The  supreme l e v e l  transcend  i s t h a t of the A d i Buddha or V a j r a d h a r a  'Achang), the e t e r n a l Buddha.  Of  (Rdo-rje  Beneath the A d i Buddha i s the  of the thousand Dhyani Buddhas, who on e a r t h .  the realm o f samsara.  correspond  level  to the Buddhas  teaching  these Dhyani Buddhas, f i v e a r e known to t h i s p e r i o d o f  the u n i v e r s e : Amitabha ('Aod-dpag-med), V a i r o c a n a (Rnam-par-snang-mdzad), Ratnasambhava (Rin-chen Amoghasiddhi (Don-yod-grub-pa), and Aksobhya The  next l e v e l i n descending  who  are considered  to be  ( S c h l a g i n t w e i t 1968:52). physical limitations  order  (Mi-Bskyod-pa).  i s t h a t of the Dhyani B o d h i s a t t v a s ,  the " s p i r i t u a l sons" of the Dhyani Buddhas A Buddha t e a c h i n g on e a r t h i s s u b j e c t to  experienced  by humans and,  the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the Dhyani B o d h i s a t t v a s the e a r t h l y Buddha u n t i l  'Abyung-ldan),  thus, may  to c o n t i n u e  the next Buddha a p p e a r s .  The  r e c e n t Buddha to appear on e a r t h was  Sakyamuni.  Amitabha, and  i s Avalokitesvara  h i s Dhyani B o d h i s a t t v a  (Spyan-ras-gzigs).  Since  of  the work o f Sakyamuni.  I t is  the work of  f o u r t h and  most  H i s Dhyani Buddha i s  the D a l a i Lama i s c o n s i d e r e d  i n c a r n a t i o n of A v a l o k i t e s v a r a , he r e p r e s e n t s  die.  the  to be  the  the c o n t i n u a t i o n on e a r t h  Ten stages o f v a r y i n g degrees B o d h i s a t t v a s from  o f enlightenment  s e p a r a t e the  the lowest l e v e l o f t r a n s c e n d e n t heavens.  The  lowest o f these heavens i s i n h a b i t e d by chos-skyongs  ("oracles"),  mkh'a-'agro-mas (khandromas), "sky-going goddesses",  and mgon-pos,  various protectors of r e l i g i o n . Buddhahood a r e r e f e r r e d  These v a r i o u s Buddhas and stages o f  to c o l l o q u i a l l y as the ' g r e a t e r l h a ' .  F o r those s u b j e c t to samsara, o n l y a r e b i r t h i n the lowest o f heavens may be a n t i c i p a t e d ,  that of sensual d e l i g h t s , not of  enlightened understanding.  Though these gods enjoy a l l manner o f  s e n s u a l d e l i g h t s and l e a d a b l i s s f u l realm  is finite.  e x i s t e n c e , t h e i r tenure i n t h i s  When a god o r goddess exhausts  m e r i t , he o r she d i e s .  h i s or her store of  A week b e f o r e a god d i e s , he s i c k e n s and i s  shunned by h i s f e l l o w gods, and death i s , t h e r e f o r e , as m i s e r a b l e f o r a god as i t i s f o r a human.  H i s s o u l may be r e b o r n a g a i n as a god o r  as a l e s s e r b e i n g . Lha-ma-yin means l i t e r a l l y  "god n o t i t i s " , and the lha-ma-yin  rank below the l h a b u t above humans.  T h e i r realm i s c o n s i d e r e d to be  almost e q u i v a l e n t to t h a t o f the l h a i n i t s s e n s u a l d e l i g h t s .  But  lha-ma-yin have a m a r t i a l n a t u r e and c o n s t a n t l y war upon each o t h e r and  envy the l h a , who enjoy h i g h e r s t a t u s and possess  the w i s h - g r a n t i n g t r e e . lha-ma-yin a r e f a t e d lha,  and b i r t h i n t o  A c c o r d i n g to Waddell  the f r u i t o f  (1974:82), the  to d i e waging a war they cannot win a g a i n s t the t h i s realm f o l l o w s f o r those who boasted  "during  t h e i r human c a r e e r " o f t h e i r s u p e r i o r p i e t y . The human realm i s d e p i c t e d by Buddhists as one r i f e w i t h e i g h t major m i s e r i e s : ( 1 ) b i r t h ;  (2) o l d age; (3) s i c k n e s s ; (4) death;  56  ENLIGHTENED BEINGS  MKH'A-'AGRO-MAS  MGON-POS  /  SEMI-INUGHTENEO BEINGS  CHOS-SKYONGS  iiiHiiiQuAnitainii^^ LHA-YUl (WORLD O F THE GODS)  S A M S A R A (REALM O f REBIRTHS)  LHA-MA-YIN-YUL (WORLD O F THE TITANS)  RGYAL-POS (ghosts of apostate lamas) .  MI-YUL (WORLD OF HUMANS)  BTSAN  GHOSTS  BTSAN  t  (progeny of cross-world marriages between humans and klu)  KLU-YUL (WORLD OF THE SERPENT BEINGS A N D SA-BDAGS)  YI-DWAGS (HUNGRY GHOSTS)  MYAL-BA (BUDDHIST HELLS)  designates attachment to, but not membership in, the living human world  •^rf"  (ghosts of slain warriors)  designates possibility of cross-world marriage  F i g . 1, D I A G R A M O F T I B E T A N  COSMOLOGY  (5) u n f u l f i l l e d  desires;  (6) punishments f o r moral breaches; (7)  s e p a r a t i o n from l o v e d ones and v a l u e d o b j e c t s ; and (8) o f f e n s i v e o b j e c t s and s e n s a t i o n s (as, f o r example,  'bad s m e l l s ' ) .  beneath  the human realm i s t h a t o f animals and k l u .  animals  i s to be the prey o r the s l a v e s o f o t h e r s .  Immediately  The f a t e o f The k l u , as  p o r t r a y e d i n Buddhist iconography, s u f f e r a l o n g w i t h animals s i n c e the k l u a r e the prey o f the Garuda, a g i g a n t i c e a g l e - l i k e  bird.  The yi-dwags o r hungry ghosts e x i s t between the a n i m a l world and the B u d d h i s t h e l l s . These hungry ghosts a r e d e p i c t e d as b i g - b e l l i e d , narrow-necked c r e a t u r e s w i t h t i n y mouths. f i l l e d with sensual d e l i g h t s , are unable food  they a r e c o n s t a n t l y ravenous  to i n g e s t o r d i g e s t f o o d .  these yi-dwags swallow  Though t h e i r world i s  i s thought  Waddell  of  they  (1974:97) notes t h a t any  to burn once I n s i d e t h e i r  mouths o r to be transformed i n t o sharp c u t t i n g implements. they d r i n k i s supposed  since  to t r a n s f o r m i n t o f l a m e s .  Any water  A common e x p l a n a t i o n  the yi-dwags p l i g h t o f f e r e d by Dharmsala T i b e t a n s i s t h a t the  t h r o a t s o f the yi-dwags a r e so t h i n t h a t they a r e a b l e to swallow t h e i r own mucus.  only  These hungry ghosts have been m i s e r l y , greedy, and  envious In t h e i r former human l i v e s ; hence, they have been r e b o r n i n a realm which m i r r o r s t h a t o f the lha-ma-yin. The because  lha-ma-yin do n o t r e a l i z e t h a t they l i v e they preoccupy  are c o n t i n u a l l y enjoy.  i n a v i r t u a l heaven  themselves w i t h envying the gods.  The yl-dwags  t a n t a l i z e d by the s e n s u a l d e l i g h t s which they cannot  The karmic f a c t o r p r e d i s p o s i n g a s o u l to r e b i r t h as a  lha-ma-yin  i s presumptuous p i e t y ;  as a yi-dwags a r e envy and greed.  those p r e d i s p o s i n g a s o u l to r e b i r t h  The B u d d h i s t hells.  h e l l s a r e c a t e g o r i z e d i n t o e i g h t c o l d and e i g h t h o t  To these v a r i o u s h e l l s a r e p a r c e l l e d o u t s u i c i d e s , murderers,  " f r a u d u l e n t t r u s t e e s , t y r a n t s , i g n o r a n t p h y s i c i a n s who k i l l e d p a t i e n t s , " those  d i s r e s p e c t f u l to t h e i r p a r e n t s ,  lamas, t h i e v e s , those who have profaned  their  the Buddha, o r to  the s c r i p t u r e s , c h e a t s ,  h e r e t i c s , wasters o f food, a p o s t a t e s , and, among o t h e r s , those  who  have harmed o r shed the blood of a h o l y man (Waddell 1974:98). A v a r i e t y o f numina n o t c i t e d above a l s o p o p u l a t e  the T i b e t a n  cosmos and a r e r e f e r r e d to by Nebesky-Wojkowitz (1956), T u c c i (1980), Ekvall  (1964), and o t h e r s .  Many o f these s u p e r n a t u r a l s  to c e r t a i n r e g i o n s o f T i b e t .  are s p e c i f i c  They g e n e r a l l y i n h a b i t one o f the s i x  realms, b u t , o c c a s i o n a l l y , as i s the case w i t h btsan,^ they  fall  between c a t e g o r i e s , e i t h e r as o f f s p r i n g o f c r o s s - r e a l m m a r r i a g e s o r as ghosts.  Some Major C o n s i d e r a t i o n s  i n Tibetan Buddhist  Though a d e t a i l e d d i s c u s s i o n o f Buddhist  Religious  Structure  philosophy  and monastic  p r a c t i c e i s w e l l beyond the scope o f t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n , I w i l l o u t l i n e some o f the elements o f T i b e t a n monastic o r g a n i z a t i o n and T i b e t a n Buddhism which p l a y i n t o the i d e o l o g y o f T i b e t a n h i e r a r c h y . T i b e t a n monastery i t s e l f assigned  i s organized  hierarchically.  d i f f e r e n t s t a t u s e s i n accordance w i t h  Buddhism they have vowed to observe.  The  Monks a r e  the precepts o f  A dge-tshul  i s a novice, while a  6 dge-slong i s a f u l l y o r d a i n e d incorporates  monk.  Since Tibetan  Buddhism  the m y s t i c a l p r a c t i c e s o f T a n t r i c s c h o o l s , monks may be  further distinguished initiations  from one another a c c o r d i n g  (dbang) which they have r e c e i v e d .  s e c t has a f u r t h e r r e l i g i o u s t i t l e ,  to the r e l i g i o u s  The Dge-lugs-pa  t h a t o f dge-bshes.  corresponds to "Doctor o f Theology", and i s a t t a i n e d  This  title  upon the  s u c c e s s f u l c o m p l e t i o n o f examinations which t e s t the c a n d i d a t e ' s knowledge o f " l o g i c a s a b a s i c f o r m a t i v e d i s c i p l i n e " o f Dge-lugs-pa theology, ( T u c c i  1980:111).  M i c h a e l and Knez observe t h a t the monastic o r g a n i z a t i o n s provided  a "broad avenue by which a l l c l a s s d i s t i n c t i o n s i n T i b e t a n  s o c i e t y were overcome" (1981:56). age,  i n Tibet  Young boys o f f i v e o r s i x y e a r s o f  u s u a l l y - e i t h e r middle o r youngest sons, were e l i g i b l e  monastery. nunneries.^  to e n t e r a  G i r l s were a l s o e l i g i b l e a t the age o f s i x to e n t e r E n r o l l m e n t i n the monasteries was both v o l u n t a r y and,  g in  c e r t a i n a r e a s o f T i b e t , by c o n s c r i p t i o n .  Monastic  service  p r e s e n t e d a commoner w i t h the means to enhance h i s s o c i a l s i n c e monks a r e h i g h l y  respected  i n Tibetan  s o c i e t y . Furthermore,  M i c h a e l and Knez c i t e monastic s e r v i c e as an o p p o r t u n i t y commoner to e n t e r  the " h i g h e s t  administrative  positions  c e n t r a l , r e g i o n a l , and l o c a l governments" (1981:57). of  this opportunity  were n o t l o s t  status,  for a i n the  The i m p l i c a t i o n s  to some o f the f a m i l i e s o f the  novitiates. Buddhism teaches t h a t proper a c t i o n ( t h a b s ) w i l l enable one to a c q u i r e  p e r f e c t knowledge ( s h e s ) which w i l l  attainment of nirvana d i f f e r e n t schools  i n turn lead  and escape from the c y c l e o f r e b i r t h s .  o f Buddhism h o l d  proper a c t i o n should be p r a c t i c e d .  to the But  d i f f e r e n t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f how In Tibet,  the p i v o t a l focus o f  Buddhism became the lama or g u r u , and f o r T u c c i (1980), and o t h e r s have r e f e r r e d "Lamaism". The lama t r a n s m i t s its  i n t e n t to the p u p i l  t h i s r e a s o n , Waddell  to Buddhism i n T i b e t as  the B u d d h i s t s c r i p t u r e ( l u n g ) and  through h i s " l i v i n g , d i r e c t c o n t a c t " ,  awakens i n the p u p i l a " m y s t i c a l " a p p r e c i a t i o n o f 1980:44).  S t e i n remarks  (1974),  the t e x t  and  (Tucci  t h a t a d i s c i p l e had to go from t e a c h e r  to  teacher i n o r d e r to study a new d o c t r i n e o r commentary (1972:149). Tucci likens  the bond between lama and d i s c i p l e to t h a t of  spiritual  f a t h e r and s o n , a r e l a t i o n s h i p which transcends any bonds o f k i n s h i p . Paul (1982), it  s e i z i n g the i m p l i c a t i o n s of  this relationship,  finds  in  a s y m b o l i c s o l u t i o n to the O e d i p a l c o n f l i c t s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h  s u c c e s s i o n s i n c e , he c o n t e n d s , the female element scene.  i s removed from  the  However, on the b a s i s of T i b e t a n h i s t o r y a l o n e (as w i l l be  c o n s i d e r e d i n Chapter V I I I ) , c o m p e t i t i o n between  one f i n d s  t h a t there was no shortage of  the adherents o f d i f f e r e n t s p i r i t u a l  lineages  in  Tibet. Samuel (1978b) observes t h a t the connotations i n Tibetan s o c i e t y . term:  (1)  He d i s t i n g u i s h e s f o u r usages of  the abbot of a monastery,  administrative  the  the h o l d e r of a s e n i o r  p o s t i n the monastery, o r the h o l d e r of a s e n i o r  p o s i t i o n i n the s p i r i t u a l h i e r a r c h y o f governmental,  terra "lama" has a number of  the m o n a s t e r y ' ; (2)  r e l i g i o u s , p o l i t i c a l , and j u d i c i a l  the D a l a i Lama; (3) monastery; and (4)  a guru o r teacher o f  tantric  functionary  such as  practice within  from the l a y p e r s p e c t i v e , a m a g i c a l  who performs r i t u a l s  a  practitioner  of c u r i n g , e x o r c i s m , and guides the s o u l o f  deceased through b a r - d o  to a f o r t u n a t e r e b i r t h .  the  Though Samuel  the  61 acknowledges the I n t e r - r e l a t i o n s o f these f u n c t i o n s , he suggests  a  t e l e o l o g y - t h a t the lama as a teacher e a s i l y becomes the lama as p o l i t i c a l a u t h o r i t y , e s p e c i a l l y I f he has secured h i s r e p u t a t i o n as a performer  of r i t u a l s .  I m p o r t a n t l y , Samuel f u r t h e r  suggests:  In the case of the most s e n i o r lamas i n h i s own monastic o r d e r . . . t h e T h i r t e e n t h D a l a i Lama s e l e c t e d these h i m s e l f , w i t h o u t r e s p e c t to i n c a r n a t e - l a m a s t a t u s , from monks who had g r a d u a l l y worked t h e i r way up through the monastic h i e r a r c h y . The most s e n i o r of these posts (Abbot o f Dg'a-ldan) was In some r e s p e c t s s e n i o r to the D a l a i Lama h i m s e l f , and i t would d o u b t l e s s have been uncomfortable to have had t h i s p o s t f i l l e d by an i n c a r n a t e - l a m a l i n e which would be bound to c o n s t i t u t e a s e r i e s o f p o t e n t i a l r i v a l s f o r the D a l a i Lama's own power (1978a:5).  Thus, i n T i b e t , where as Samuel (1982) suggests, a s p e c t o f s o c i e t y was n o t secondary  the r e l i g i o u s  to the s e c u l a r , the lama, as a  s i g n i f i c a n t m a g i c a l p r a c t i t i o n e r and/or t e a c h e r , c o u l d e a s i l y complex p o l i t i c a l  role.  S e v e r a l a n t h r o p o l o g i s t s , who  have worked i n B u d d h i s t  and who have s t u d i e d r i t u a l s addressed have found  S p i r o (1967),  s u p e r n a t u r a l i s m , appears  societies,  to v a r i o u s s u p e r n a t u r a l b e i n g s ,  the popular a t t e n t i o n p a i d to these numina  problematic.  play a  to be  i n h i s a n a l y s i s o f Burmese  to be convinced  t h a t the Burmese  simply  r e f u s e to see the I n c o n s i s t e n c i e s In the e x i s t e n c e of s u p e r n a t u r a l beings  (such as n a t s ) and the laws o f karma.  suggests  t h a t there a r e n e c e s s a r y  Tarabiah (1977)  i n t e r - r e l a t i o n s between both  s i n c e they serve d i s t i n c t s o c i a l s t r u c t u r a l i n t e r e s t s . (1984) has proposed  beliefs  Holmberg  t h a t among the Tamang, a N e p a l i people  who  s u b s c r i b e to Buddhism, between  t h i s d i s t i n c t i o n i s served by the o p p o s i t i o n  the l i v i n g and the dead.  F o r the Tamang, m a g i c a l c o n t r o l o f  the s u p e r n a t u r a l i s important f o r the l i v i n g , b u t Buddhist concern the dead. i n T i b e t may  rites  But I suggest t h a t the p o l i t i c a l a s p e c t o f the lama  shed some l i g h t  major c o n t r a d i c t i o n .  on what has h e r e t o f o r e been observed as a  63  NOTES  1. F o r a t h e o r e t i c a l treatment o f the r o l e o f the sbyin-bdag o r Western sponsor i n T i b e t a n refugee l i f e , see DeVoe (1983). 2. F o r a thorough d i s c u s s i o n o f the e d u c a t i o n o f T i b e t a n c h i l d r e n i n e x i l e , see Nowak (1984). 3. T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala a p p l y the terra bu (boy) to any male between the ages o f about n i n e years and f o r t y y e a r s . T i b e t a n speakers o f E n g l i s h o f t e n a p p l y the E n g l i s h word "boy" i n such r e f e r e n c e s . I f a male i n t h i s age range i s known to be m a r r i e d and a f a t h e r , o r a h o l d e r o f h i g h o f f i c e , however, the speaker w i l l employ o t h e r terms o f r e f e r e n c e b e f i t t i n g the known s t a t u s - e.g., pho ("man"), pa-lags ( " r e s p e c t f u l terra f o r f a t h e r " - l a g s b e i n g an h o n o r i f i c s u f f i x ) , mi ("man"), sku-dngon ("high o f f i c i a l " ) , e t c . S i m i l a r l y , a young woman between the ages o f roughly e i g h t years and t h i r t y years w i l l be r e f e r r e d to a s bu-mo ( " g i r l " ) , u n l e s s the woman i s wearing an apron, which s i g n i f i e s m a r r i a g e , o r i s known by t h e speaker to be m a r r i e d . Women known to be married would be r e f e r r e d to as ama-lags; o l d e r women would be r e f e r r e d to as mp_ o r mo-lags. P a r t i c u l a r terms o f r e f e r e n c e a l s o d e s i g n a t e women o f h i g h b i r t h and immediate f a m i l y members o f a D a l a i Lama. 4. The T i b e t a n Youth Congress was o r g a n i z e d i n 1970 i n response to a speech g i v e n by the D a l a i Lama c a l l i n g f o r the need o f T i b e t a n youth to keep i n touch w i t h the problems o f the T i b e t a n people. The avowed aim o f the o r g a n i z a t i o n i s the c r e a t i o n o f an independent T i b e t a n n a t i o n . Membership i n the o r g a n i z a t i o n c o n s i s t s o f "young" T i b e t a n men and women between the ages o f s i x t e e n years and f o r t y y e a r s . The TYC p u b l i s h e s a b l - l l n g u a l magazine, d i r e c t s i t s e l f to community a i d p r o j e c t s ( e . g . , l a t r i n e c o n s t r u c t i o n , clean-up campaigns), and a l s o p a r t i c i p a t e s i n numerous p o l i t i c a l a c t i v i t i e s . The TYC, f o r example, r e g u l a r l y submits demands to the Chinese Embassy i n D e l h i , and w r i t e s to the U.N. and heads of" s t a t e s , i n an attempt to f o s t e r more c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f the T i b e t a n c a s e . 5. I n the raid-1970'is, s e v e r a l TCV female teachers were asked by the a d m i n i s t r a t i o n to r e s i g n t h e i r p o s t s , because t h e i r romantic a f f a i r s had become "too p u b l i c " . One such teacher expressed h e r u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the s i t u a t i o n i n terms o f c o n f l i c t i n g m o r a l i t i e s . She was educated i n what i s c o n s i d e r e d to be a p r e s t i g i o u s g i r l s ' s c h o o l i n I n d i a , where she had l i t t l e c o n t a c t w i t h T i b e t a n s . When she came to Dharmsala to teach, she d i s c u s s e d l i f e i n T i b e t w i t h some o f the o l d e r Dharmsala l a d i e s , and d i s c o v e r e d t h a t the c o n s t r i c t i o n s p l a c e d upon female s e x u a l i t y i n I n d i a d i d n o t conform to the more l i b e r a l a t t i t u d e towards female s e x u a l i t y i n T i b e t . Although t h i s young woman's assessment o f d i s p a r a t e m o r a l i t i e s suggests a r a t i o n a l i z a t i o n on h e r  64 p a r t of the a c t i v i t i e s l e a d i n g up to her being f i r e d as a teacher, romantic a f f a i r s between unmarried and married T i b e t a n s abound i n Dharmsala. Furthermore, i n most o f T i b e t , w i t h , perhaps, the e x c e p t i o n o f Lhasa, young T i b e t a n men and women engaged r e l a t i v e l y f r e e l y i n romantic i n v o l v e m e n t s . Boys would o f t e n sneak i n t o the tents i n h a b i t e d by t h e i r paramours a t n i g h t . T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala say t h a t parents were aware of the young l o v e r s ' a c t i v i t i e s . Such a c t i v i t i e s were g e n e r a l l y s a n c t i o n e d u n l e s s the p a r e n t s happened "to see" (as opposed " t o hear") the l o v e r s . Thus, the i s s u e of m o r a l i t y , i n the TCV c a s e , appears to be d i r e c t e d more towards p r e s e r v i n g a c e r t a i n image of the s c h o o l to the p u b l i c i n g e n e r a l , and to the sponsors i n p a r t i c u l a r . 6. The ten B u d d h i s t p r e c e p t s observed by the d g e - t s h u l and dge-slong a r e : not to k i l l ; not to s t e a l ; not to d r i n k a l c o h o l ; c e l i b a c y ; n o t to e a t a t i n a p p r o p r i a t e times; not to engage i n music, s i n g i n g , dancing, o r to a t t e n d t h e a t r i c a l performances; n o t to deck o n e s e l f w i t h f l o w e r s , perfume, o r ornaments; not to s l e e p on a h i g h bed; and n o t to r e c e i v e g o l d or s i l v e r ( T u c c i 1980:111). These p r e c e p t s o f t e n s u s t a i n e d m u l t i p l e I n t e r p r e t a t i o n s i n the monastic communities o f T i b e t . Monks a r e , o f c o u r s e , h i g h l y s k i l l e d i n monastic dance, and i n the p l a y i n g o f r e l i g i o u s music. Furthermore, i n Lhasa, one of the major opera troupes was composed e n t i r e l y o f monks. The p r e c e p t f o r b i d d i n g a monk to r e c e i v e g o l d or s i l v e r was d i r e c t e d to the i n d i v i d u a l monk, and n o t to the monastic o r g a n i z a t i o n , as monasteries o f t e n r e t a i n e d v a s t l a n d h o l d i n g s , and made l o a n s . 7. No s t a t i s t i c s are a v a i l a b l e on the a c t u a l number of monks v i s - a - v i s t h a t of nuns i n T i b e t , but n u n n e r i e s and nuns i n T i b e t were f a r outnumbered by monks and m o n a s t e r i e s . T i b e t a n men i n Dharmsala tend to r e g a r d nuns w i t h amusement, s i n c e they a s s e r t t h a t sexual a b s t i n e n c e f o r women i s w e l l - n i g h i m p o s s i b l e . A l t h o u g h nuns may be r e q u e s t e d to perform a r i t u a l i n one's home, nuns would n o t be as p r e s t i g i o u s f o r the sponsor of the r i t u a l as monks would be. Few T i b e t a n g i r l s i n Dharmsala enter a nunnery. The nunnery i s c o n s i d e r e d to be a p l e a s a n t r e t i r e m e n t home, however, f o r widows or o l d e r women. 8. I n some a r e a s o f Mng'a-ri, f o r example, nomad f a m i l i e s who wished to r e t a i n t h e i r sons, who were i n v a l u a b l e c o n t r i b u t o r s to the f a m i l y economy, p a i d a tax to a v o i d the sons' c o n s c r i p t i o n i n both monastic and m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e .  65  CHAPTER I I I  RITUAL APPEASEMENT: ALIGNING THE COSMOLOGICAL HIERARCHY  The  s t r a t e g i e s adopted i n the c u r i n g r i t u a l s T i b e t a n s  e x i l e d i f f e r markedly a c c o r d i n g to be m o r a l l y  responsible  perform i n  to whether o r n o t the p a t i e n t i s found  for h i s or her i l l n e s s .  I f the decree o f  d i v i n e r o r o r a c l e sought by the p a t i e n t , the p a t i e n t ' s r e l a t i v e s , o r f r i e n d s , h o l d s the p a t i e n t r e p r e h e n s i b l e cosmological  being,  then the focus  f o r some t r e s p a s s a g a i n s t a  o f the ensuing c u r i n g r i t u a l  appeasement, u s u a l l y through p r e s t a t i o n s , o f t h a t b e i n g .  i s the  The numina  so i n f r i n g e d upon, however, come from but two realms o f samsara, of  the l h a o r gods and the k l u o r nagas.  is superior  that  While the realm o f the l h a  to t h a t o f humans, the ranks o f the k l u a r e i n f e r i o r .  But  each realm " l e g i t i m a t e l y " takes o f f e n s e a g a i n s t human t r e s p a s s and must be appeased  through p r e s t a t i o n .  T h i s p r e s t a t i o n through r i t u a l  might be viewed as an a l i g n m e n t o f the cosmos, an a l i g n m e n t which a t once avows the e x i s t e n c e  of a cosmological  unique p o s i t i o n o f humans v i s - a - v i s t h a t For T i b e t a n s ,  h i e r a r c h y and expresses the hierarchy.  " p r e s t a t i o n " connotes two d i s t i n c t a c t i o n s ,  " o f f e r i n g up" (mchod-pa p u l - b a ) and " g i v i n g down" (dge-ba gtong-ba).  While an " o f f e r i n g " i s always d i r e c t e d up, t h a t i s ,  towards any b e i n g  or beings s u p e r i o r  to humans i n the cosmic ranks,  " g i v i n g " presumes the i n f e r i o r s t a t u s o f the r e c i p i e n t . form o f a c t i o n , T i b e t a n r i t u a l p r e s t a t i o n s a f f i r m relationships.  Moreover, the performance  In either  status  of a T i b e t a n Buddhist  r i t u a l , whether i t be " b i g " ( w r a t h f u l ) o r " s m a l l " ( p e a c e f u l ) , as i n f o r m a n t s g l o s s r i t u a l a c t i o n , r e q u i r e s the i n v i t a t i o n o f members o f the f o u r cosmic realms as g u e s t s .  Buddhas who have a t t a i n e d n i r v a n a ; (2) protectors of r e l i g i o n ;  (3)  the mgon-pos, w r a t h f u l  the s e n t i e n t b e i n g s from the s i x l e v e l s o f  samsara - the l h a ( g o d s ) , lha-ma-yin klu  ( t i t a n s o r a s u r a s ) , human b e i n g s ,  (nagas) and a n i m a l s , yi-dwags (hungry g h o s t s ) , and h e l l  and (4)  beings;  those " e v i l s p i r i t s around h e r e " who f r e q u e n t r e l i g i o u s  events. first  (1)  These c a t e g o r i e s i n c l u d e :  A l l o f these guests must be tendered p r e s t a t i o n s , b u t the  two realms, t h a t o f the Buddhas and mgon-pos, u n q u e s t i o n a b l y  r e c e i v e " o f f e r i n g s " , w h i l e w i t h the e x c e p t i o n o f the l h a ( g o d s ) , the c r e a t u r e s i n h a b i t i n g samsara and the e v i l s p i r i t s a r e " g i v e n " something  as a r e q u i s i t e a c t o f compassion  Thus, any r i t u a l o f appeasement i n v i t e s  on the p a r t o f the donor.  the members o f the cosmic  ranks to w i t n e s s and p a r t i c i p a t e i n the a l i g n m e n t o f the h i e r a r c h y . T h i s c h a p t e r w i l l address discussing  the i s s u e o f cosmic a l i g n m e n t by  the nature o f the more o r l e s s  immediate n e i g h b o r s o f  humans i n the c o s m o l o g i c a l h i e r a r c h y , the l h a o r gods and the k l u o r s e r p e n t b e i n g s , some i l l n e s s e s caused by l h a and k l u r e s u l t i n g  from  the moral r e p r e h e n s i b i l i t y o f humans, why humans might be deemed so r e p r e h e n s i b l e , and, f i n a l l y , appeasement.  the importance  o f the i n t e n t i o n a l ! t y o f  The  Lha  Lha  (gods) and  e n l i g h t e n e d beings  lha-mo (goddesses) a r e terms T i b e t a n s a p p l y (those Buddhas who  have transcended  e x i s t e n c e ) , p r o t e c t o r s of the f a i t h , the whom humans may  to  samsaric  'compassionate' beings  a p p l y f o r a s s i s t a n c e , l o c a l gods and  goddesses  to who  p r e s i d e over s p e c i f i c r e g i o n s such as v a l l e y s , mountains, mountain passes,  or the household, as w e l l as t o o t h e r i n h a b i t a n t s of  v a r i o u s l e v e l s of T i b e t a n B u d d h i s t most powerful  heaven.  manifestations.  u s u a l l y the  Some e x c l u s i v e l y adopt one m a n i f e s t a t i o n as does the  i n c a r n a t e s i n the person  manifest  themselves i n two  the compassionate Buddha,  of the D a l a i Lama, w h i l e o t h e r l h a  o r more forms.  In T i b e t a n  v e i l e d w i t h gauze pendants i n rainbow c o l o r s . people  images o f these w r a t h f u l d e i t i e s , they w i l l suddenly  rainbow-colored  horrific  l o o k upon the become a f r a i d  e f f e c t upon t h e i r b l e s s i n g s .  gauze v e i l would s h i e l d the v i e w e r s ' eyes,  image to r e v e a l i t s e l f s l o w l y , and,  typically  As one monk e x p l a i n e d ,  e n t e r the temple t o r e c e i v e b l e s s i n g s and  t h e i r f e a r c o u l d produce an adverse  may  Buddhist  temples, s t a t u e s of w r a t h f u l d e i t i e s a r e s e t i n a l c o v e s and  if  the  Lha appear e i t h e r i n w r a t h f u l o r p e a c e f u l  w r a t h f u l p r o t e c t o r e s s of S p y a n - r a s - g z i g s , who  Lha a r e , above a l l ,  members of the c o s m o l o g i c a l h i e r a r c h y and  most i n t e l l i g e n t .  the  thereby,  and The  causing  "wear o u t " the  immediate  effect.  Iconographic  d e p i c t i o n s of l h a , whether p a i n t e d  (thang-ka) i l l u s t r a t i n g the e n l i g h t e n e d ones and  scrolls  t h e i r h i s t o r i e s or  c o s m o l o g i c a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s , or paper r e p r o d u c t i o n s o f these  the  scrolls  framed, i f p o s s i b l e , i n g l a s s ( i n o r d e r from r e a c h i n g and  the l h a ) , a r e  to p r e v e n t any noxious odors  the "ornaments" o f every T i b e t a n home  a r e always hung above e y e - l e v e l .  In fact,  these p a i n t e d  scrolls  r e p r e s e n t windows f o r the human eye and a r e i l l u m i n a t e d w i t h o f b u t t e r lamps b u r n i n g  on  the a l t a r beneath the s c r o l l .  the  light  This  l i g h t i n g arrangement r e v e a l s the p e r s p e c t i v e of the p a i n t i n g to advantage and  emphasizes the e l e v a t e d s t a t u s o f the l h a .  households d i s p l a y a pantheon o f T i b e t a n d e i t i e s on Is taken to preserve  the r a n k i n g o f the l h a and o f  When  their altars, the  care  sprul-skus,  o r r e i n c a r n a t e d lamas; a p o r t r a i t of the D a l a i Lama, f o r example, must always occupy the h i g h e s t p o s i t i o n o f any The  the i n c a r n a t e d  lamas.  s i z e o f the l h a (as w e l l as of o t h e r numina) a l s o must  taken i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n by humans who habitats.  of  During  might venture  a r i t u a l g i v e n to c o n s e c r a t e  a new  into lha Rnying-ma-pa  sgom-pa In Dharmsala, a p r o c e s s i o n c a r r i e d an e f f i g y o f the D a l a i Lama, a demon, and  a  Fifth  t r i a n g u l a r box c o n t a i n i n g e v i l s p i r i t s  would be d e s t r o y e d  (the s i g n i f i c a n c e of which w i l l be d i s c u s s e d  Chapters V and  from the new  VI)  d i s t a n c e from the sgom-pa.  The  p r o c e s s i o n was  Is a s p e c i a l i s t  in  l e d by a l a y  man life.  i n magic s p e l l s ) e x p l a i n e d  to  the importance o f the thang-ka i n warning the l o c a l d e i t i e s about p r o c e s s i o n and what i t conveyed.  The warnings were d i r e c t e d to  d i f f e r e n t numina - g r e a t e r l h a , l e s s e r l h a , and g r e a t e r l h a were requested way;  that  sgom-pa to a c r o s s i n g o f paths some  c a r r y i n g a s c r o l l p a i n t i n g (thang-ka) d e p i c t i n g the wheel o f A sngags-pa (one who  be  sa-bdag.  to remove t h e i r l e g s and  the medium-sized l h a , to remove t h e i r bodies;  the  the  three  The  not stand and  me  i n the  short  69 sa-bdags,  tx> bend down i n o r d e r to a v o i d b e i n g s t r u c k by the  e f f i g i e s o r box. ritual,  I f any o f these numina touched  they would be harmed.  addressed  the " g i v i n g s " o f the  The t r i - p a r t i t e r e q u e s t ,  then, i s  to three l e g i t i m a t e cosmic l e v e l s , and i s p r e s e n t e d as a  demonstration  o f human concern  f o r their welfare.  A gtor-ma, a cake  molded from b a r l e y f l o u r (upon which I w i l l e l a b o r a t e l a t e r ) , comprises  the medium f o r both  " o f f e r i n g s " and " g i v i n g s " .  As i t would  be d e l e t e r i o u s f o r l o c a l l h a to come i n t o c o n t a c t w i t h gtor-mas designated  f o r e v i l s p i r i t s , Tibetans  t h i n k , by the same token,  that  gtor-mas o f f e r e d to l h a might cause r a b i e s i n dogs t h a t might happen upon them.  A gtor-ma f o r a l h a would n e c e s s a r i l y overpower a l e s s e r  b e i n g l i k e a dog.  Students  o f monastic dance a r e , on o c c a s i o n , the  victims of a s i m i l a r status discrepancy. depicts cases  i s too p o w e r f u l ,  illustrate  I f the l h a whom the dancer  the dancer might become extremely  ill.  Both  the i n v e r s i o n o f the intended d i r e c t i o n o f the  prestation. A d d i t i o n a l l y , T i b e t a n domestic  a l t a r s might d i s p l a y an image o f  the god i n h a b i t i n g the p a r t i c u l a r v a l l e y o r a r e a i n T i b e t which was the o r i g i n a l f a m i l i a l r e s i d e n c e .  T h i s l h a , ( t h e s k y e s - l h a or  y u l - l h a ) , would n o t be a Buddha o r e n l i g h t e n e d b e i n g b u t r a t h e r a member o f the ' w o r l d l y ' c l a s s o f l h a , those a t t a c h e d  to samsaric  e x i s t e n c e as opposed to i t s e n l i g h t e n e d t r a n s c e n d e r s .  The supreme  form o f l h a i s Buddhahood and i s f o l l o w e d c l o s e l y by the B o d h i s a t t v a s , who embody the compassionate a s p e c t o f Buddhahood. the source o f wisdom, guidance, goals o f Buddhists  These l h a p r o v i d e  and a s s i s t a n c e f o r the s o t e r i o l o g i c a l  - the t r a n s c e n d i n g o f samsaric  existence or, a t  70 least, a favorable rebirth path  to enlightenment.  beings  t h a t would f u r t h e r the i n d i v i d u a l a l o n g the  As one dge-bshes i n s i s t e d ,  "These supreme  can h e l p f o r m i l l i o n s o f y e a r s , b u t these l e s s e r l h a do n o t  have t h a t power. activities." admission  They a r e o n l y a b l e to help i n simple day to day  The remark o f the dge-bshes was prompted by h i s  t h a t "we T i b e t a n s c o n s t a n t l y seek the a d v i c e of the l e s s e r  lha." Though the two s t a t e o r a c l e s , the Nechung O r a c l e (Gnas-chung Chos-rgyal)  and Ganden O r a c l e (Dg'a-ldan  Chos-rgyal) a r e  government l h a and, n e c e s s a r i l y , o f a 'higher type', available  the o r a c l e s  to the g e n e r a l p u b l i c a r e f r e q u e n t l y o f lower  be a t once e a s i l y  i n s u l t e d and r e a d i l y appeased.  s t a t u s and c a n  I f these l e s s e r l h a  a r e p r o p e r l y approached, however, they w i l l r e a d i l y g i v e p r e d i c t i o n s c o n c e r n i n g human w e l f a r e .  The l e s s e r l h a depend upon human o f f e r i n g s  to a c e r t a i n e x t e n t and, t h e r e f o r e , e x i s t i n t e r d e p e n d e n t l y w i t h humans: they a r e n o t those d i c t a t e d by B u d d h i s t  i n whom people  can 'take r e f u g e ' , as  t e n e t , o r a c t as "guide, p h i l o s o p h e r , and  f r i e n d " , as may be expected  o f Buddhas and B o d h i s a t t v a s .  Furthermore,  u n l i k e the l e s s e r l h a (whom people c o n t i n u a l l y seek f o r a d v i c e and d a i l y a s s i s t a n c e ) , the supreme beings w i l l never l e a v e one, so to speak, " i n a l u r c h " . Lesser l h a are, nonetheless,  the focus o f c o n s i d e r a b l e  a t t e n t i o n and i n s p i r e no s m a l l degree o f human d e v o t i o n . s k y e s - l h a , the l h a a s s i g n e d  ritual  The  to one from b i r t h and u s u a l l y the l o c a l  g u a r d i a n o f the v a l l e y i n which one i s born, a r e known to rescue human charges  their  from dangerous s i t u a t i o n s , as the f o l l o w i n g examples  71 illustrate:  (1)  One  a person who on,  time i n T i b e t a monk was had d i e d .  As  the r i t u a l , which was  the monk began to yawn, and,  dream, he saw  f o r t h b e f o r e him,  so angry  finally,  f o r h i s tea cup  the white horse was  The  monk jumped up and  w i t h no e v i l  When t h e i r son was to a monastery.  i l l n e s s eluded  consulted  the l o c a l d o c t o r .  father,  the l o c a l o r a c l e who  failed  s i x y e a r s o l d , he Many y e a r s  i l l n e s s , and  Finally,  on  him.  f o r c e s p l a y i n g upon the f a m i l y u n t i l one day,  f a t h e r became b e d - r i d d e n w i t h a mysterious his  the  He d i s c o v e r e d t h a t the r i d e r  They were v e r y r e l i g i o u s and never  o r d a i n e d as a monk and admitted  him  r a n out to save h i m s e l f  Once i n T i b e t there l i v e d a f a m i l y c o n s i s t i n g of a  to p r o p i t i a t e t h e i r s k y e s - l h a .  This  (ceremonial  h i s s k y e s - l h a t h a t had come to save  mother, and a beloved son.  was  the monk became  to throw a t the r i d e r .  covered w i t h white gauze kha-btags  moving.  a  the o t h e r monks o u t s i d e c a l l i n g  this ro-langs (walking corpse).  (2)  At l a s t  Then, to h i s h o r r o r , he n o t i c e d t h a t the hand o f  c o r p s e , which was  from  In h i s  i n h i s dream, and k e p t running back  thought awakened him and he heard  s c a r v e s ) , was  a b i t b o r i n g , wore  nodded o f f to s l e e p .  disturbing h i s prayers.  t h a t he reached  to come out.  the bar-do r i t e s f o r  h i m s e l f p r a y i n g a l o n g w i t h the monks, b u t suddenly  r i d e r on a white horse appeared and  performing  passed  when the  the source of  the man's w i f e  p r e s c r i b e d the a p p r o p r i a t e r e l i g i o u s  r i t e s , o f f e r i n g s , and  p r a y e r s to ward o f f the e v i l s p i r i t s r e s p o n s i b l e  f o r the d i s e a s e .  o r a c l e f u r t h e r prophesied  The  t h a t the s i c k man's  rlung-rta  ( h i s " l u c k " ) was a t i t s lowest ebb, l e a v i n g him extremely  vulnerable  to a t t a c k s  from e v i l s p i r i t s and, t h e r e f o r e ,  t h a t the man  must r e f r a i n from l e a v i n g the house a t dawn o r dusk (busy hours f o r e v i l s p i r i t s ) f o r some time. The But,  man f o l l o w e d  the o r a c l e ' s p r e s c r i p t i o n s and began to r e c o v e r .  i g n o r i n g the o r a c l e ' s admonition, the f a t h e r l e f t  evening.  the house one  As he s t r o l l e d away, he reached a wooded a r e a where he saw a  number o f people e n j o y i n g even r e c o g n i z e d  a p i c n i c , d r i n k i n g , and s i n g i n g songs.  some o f h i s f r i e n d s , who e n t i c e d him to j o i n them and  d r i n k a g r e a t d e a l o f beer. h i s son, the monk, h u r r y i n g considerably, permission.  He  and he s c o l d e d  Amidst t h i s f e s t i v i t y , to f e t c h him home.  the man n o t i c e d  T h i s annoyed the man  h i s son f o r l e a v i n g the monastery w i t h o u t  A l t h o u g h the f a t h e r threatened  to b e a t h i s son upon  their  r e t u r n home i f the son d i d n o t a t once d e p a r t f o r h i s monastery, the monk r e f u s e d The  to budge u n l e s s  father a t l a s t  accompanied by h i s f a t h e r .  resigned  himself  e n t r e a t i e s o f h i s new f r i e n d s to s t a y .  to r e t u r n i n g home d e s p i t e the H i s f r i e n d s , however,  the pockets o f h i s wool phyu-pa ( c l o a k ) w i t h e a t a b l e s  to take home.  The  son guided h i s drunken f a t h e r home where the f r a n t i c w i f e  saw  her husband w a l k i n g a l o n e ,  closed  i n a state of delirium.  her husband i n t o bed r a t h e r  s i n g i n g , and s h o u t i n g  finally  w i t h h i s eyes  The " i n t e l l i g e n t " w i f e  than q u a r r e l w i t h him,  loaded  i n s t a n t l y put  b u t the man r e f u s e d  to s l e e p u n t i l he and h i s w i f e had eaten the food he had brought from the p i c n i c . the  When the w i f e went to r e t r i e v e the food,  'eatables'  retained  were dismembered human f l e s h .  Despite  she found  that  h e r h o r r o r , she  the presence o f mind to throw away these remains and r e p l a c e  73 them w i t h food from her own p a n t r y .  She p r e s e n t e d  h e r husband  the s u b s t i t u t e food as he n a r r a t e d h i s adventure w i t h  with  the p i c n i c k e r s ,  and complained t h a t t h e i r son had run away from the monastery to j o i n him a t the p i c n i c . The woman, however, was s u r p r i s e d to hear o f her son's presence s i n c e she had n o t seen him r e t u r n w i t h h e r husband. husband became extremely  ill,  The n e x t day, h e r  and the w i f e a g a i n c o n s u l t e d  the o r a c l e .  She was a t once rebuked by the l h a f o r a l l o w i n g her husband to go o u t l a t e a t n i g h t , c o n t r a r y to the l h a ' s a d v i c e . her t h a t the son who had rescued s k y e s - l h a , n o t t h e i r monk son. p r e s c r i b e d and the man f i n a l l y  The o r a c l e  informed  her husband was a c t u a l l y  the man's  F u r t h e r r e l i g i o u s r i t u a l s were recovered.  The above two i l l u s t r a t i o n s c o n f i r m the importance o f a l o c a l god such as a s k y e s - l h a i n s a v i n g one's l i f e d e s p i t e one's s t u p i d a c t i o n s . But,  i n some i n s t a n c e s , b l i n d n e s s o r s i c k n e s s can be caused by one's  s k y e s - l h a because the s k y e s - l h a f e e l s n e g l e c t e d by humans.  I f one Is  born i n Lhasa, f o r example, one's s k y e s - l h a i s Panden Lhamo  (Dpal-ldan  Lha-mo), the w r a t h f u l p r o t e c t o r e s s o f the D a l a i Lama.  She i s known  to become o f f e n d e d  i f she i s n o t thought about a l l the time and the  object of prayers.  One man dreamed t h a t a young monk was t r y i n g to  s t r a n g l e him.  Upon c o n s u l t i n g an o r a c l e , the man l e a r n e d t h a t the  "young monk" was h i s s k y e s - l h a who was angered a t the man's inattentiveness. relied  The s k y e s - l h a i s n o t an e n l i g h t e n e d b e i n g b u t c a n be  upon i n most events  the s k y e s - l h a enjoys  to come to one's a s s i s t a n c e , e s p e c i a l l y i f  the r e s p e c t o f h i s o r h e r charges and t h e i r  level  74 o f r l u n g - r t a i s low. Oracles  a r e v e n e r a t e d f o r t h e i r r o l e as " i n f o r m a t i o n  brokers".  H i g h - r a n k i n g o r a c l e s such as the Nechung a r e compared by some T i b e t a n s to the D a l a i Lama's press  secretary,  someone who transmits  knowledge from "on h i g h " down to the g e n e r a l denies,  or corrects public queries.  Lesser  critical  p u b l i c and a l s o  confirms,  o r a c l e s , however, have  s e n s i t i v e n a t u r e s and demand f a i t h f u l n e s s as w e l l as o f f e r i n g s from their followers.  Tibetans  s t r e s s the importance o f d e v e l o p i n g  r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h a p a r t i c u l a r lama to whom one should f o r mo_ ( d i c e d i v i n a t i o n ) .  a  customarily  go  To seek p r e d i c t i o n s from one lama i s o f t e n  expressed as an " i d e a l " s i t u a t i o n , b u t common p r a c t i c e c o n t r a d i c t s t h i s i d e a l s i n c e many T i b e t a n s and  w i l l "go f o r mo" from s e v e r a l  weigh each r e s u l t i n l i g h t o f h i s o r h e r p e r s o n a l One i n f o r m a n t emphasized  c u r i n g of s i c k n e s s d i v i n a t i o n should responsible.  clients  considerations.  t h a t when mo p r e d i c t i o n s r e g a r d i n g the  do n o t prove a c c u r a t e ,  the lama p e r f o r m i n g the  n o t be blamed, t h a t the p a t i e n t ' s karma i s  But i n p r a c t i c e , I found t h a t T i b e t a n s  "karma" as a l a s t r e s o r t and p r e f e r , i n s t e a d , their personal  sources  tend to blame  to "rank" d i v i n e r s , have  f a v o r i t e s , and might be s a i d , indeed, to r e c r u i t  f o r these f a v o r i t e s , thereby b o l s t e r i n g the p r e s t i g e o f t h a t  d i v i n e r , and making i t f a s h i o n a b l e in Tibetan  to c o n s u l t him o r her.  Of c o u r s e ,  s o c i e t y , monks and lamas a r e s a i d to perform d i v i n a t i o n  through t h e i r own m e d i t a t i o n s  and a r e never imputed to h a r b o r emotions  such as j e a l o u s y , anger, and h a t r e d . The  p r a c t i c e o f ranking  d i v i n e r s when c a r r i e d o v e r to the  o r a c u l a r sphere, bears s e r i o u s consequences.  Those s e e k i n g  the a d v i c e  of more than one o r a c l e r i s k e x c i t i n g t h e wrath o f whichever pronouncements were n o t f o l l o w e d . one  has c u s t o m a r i l y  lha  posessing  I f one r e j e c t s an o r a c l e t o whom  gone, one may expect t h a t o r a c l e o r , r a t h e r , t h e  t h a t o r a c l e , t o become j e a l o u s .  sickness, blindness,  oracle's  Such wrath r e s u l t s i n  o r death f o r t h e former c l i e n t , and stems from  human impugnation o f o r a c u l a r and, t h e r e b y , o f l h a s t a t u s . A r a t h e r unusual case was t h a t o f one young T i b e t a n who, that h i s f a i l i n g a school subject  worried  (geography) might h u r t h i s chances  of f u t u r e employment w i t h t h e T i b e t a n G o v e r n m e n t - i n - E x i l e ,  consulted  the l a d y o r a c l e (who happened t o be h i s d i s t a n t r e l a t i v e ) .  During t h e  s e s s i o n , he ended up a r g u i n g  winning  the d i s p u t e ,  w i t h t h e o r a c l e and e v e n t u a l l y  p e r s u a d i n g the l h a t h a t h i s i n t e n t i o n s were n o t t o make  money, but t o s e r v e  the Tibetan  people.  The young man r e q u e s t e d ,  however, t h a t I n o t mention t o o t h e r T i b e t a n s  t h a t he had q u a r r e l e d  w i t h an o r a c l e . While t h e h i g h s t a t e o r a c l e s , t h e Nechung and Ganden, a r e government i n s t i t u t i o n s and i n v i t e d t o p r e s e n t prospect  o f T i b e t as w e l l as t o supply  annual r e p o r t s on t h e  practical directives for  m i n i s t e r s o f s t a t e , many l e s s e r o r a c l e s announce themselves i n o r d e r to d e r i v e some b e n e f i t s from human b e i n g s .  F o r example, s i n c e these  l e s s e r l h a a r e disembodied, some r e q u i r e t h e use o f a human form i n order  to partake o f desired sensual  d r i n k i n g , and s m e l l i n g p l e a s a n t  pleasures  aromas.  such a s e a t i n g ,  Furthermore, l e s s e r l h a come  t o enjoy t h e s t a t u s and a t t e n d a n t p r i v i l e g e s o f a valued  consultant.  Although, as mentioned above, lamas a r e a v a i l a b l e f o r d i v i n a t i o n s , they a r e , as one government o f f i c a l  put i t , " a f t e r a l l human and n o t  possessed  by a superpower.  Lamas do n o t d e a l i n w o r l d l y t h i n g s . "  O r a c l e s r e p r e s e n t an i n t e r f a c e o f the cosmic o r d e r between l h a - y u l (gods' c o u n t r y ) and m i - y u l (the realm o f humans). oracle,  then, i s to i n t e r a c t w i t h a god.  To c o n s u l t an  An o r a c l e i s c o n s i d e r e d to  be an u l t i m a t e a u t h o r i t y (which e x p l a i n s the young T i b e t a n ' s r e l u c t a n c e to have the f a c t known t h a t he c o n t e s t e d t h a t a u t h o r i t y ) . T h i s p o s i t i n g o f god-human complementarity i n f e r i o r gods and  those ghosts who  i s n o t l o s t upon  c o n t r i b u t e to the phenomenon,  p u r p o r t e d l y common to T i b e t a n refugee s e t t l e m e n t s i n I n d i a , o f f a l s e o r a c l e ( s e e a l s o E p s t e i n 1978).  whereas h i g h o r a c l e s m a n i f e s t  moral a c t i o n ( t o the extreme o f k i l l i n g pariahs), lesser oracles f u l f i l l humans.  and g h o s t s .  The human v i c t i m chosen  o r a c l e or ghost d i s p l a y s a t f i r s t  people who  themselves  I t i s the l a t t e r o r a c l e s who  are  as much as  social they a s s i s t  e x c i t e the envy o f i n f e r i o r l h a to be a medium by the  t r e m b l i n g ; and  a l l o f which a r e f o l l o w e d by l h a ' s name.  false  the f i v e s t a g e s o f p o s s e s s i o n : (1)  s h i v e r i n g ; (2) a f a c e c o n t o r t e d w i t h p a i n ; (3) back and (4) tensed muscles and  stomach p a i n ;  (5) sudden screams and jumps -  the announcement of the p o s s e s s i n g  However, the p r e d i c t i o n s made by a f a l s e o r a c l e  n o t be f u l f i l l e d ,  and w i l l  the  thereby disavow the l e g i t i m a c y o f  will the  oracle. T i b e t a n s s h a r p l y d i s t i n g u i s h ghost from l h a p o s s e s s i o n .  I n the  event a person i s possessed by a g h o s t , he o r she shouts or screams, but due  to "some g u i l t y complex o r i n f e r i o r i t y  i n d i v i d u a l avoids looking into and  i s a f r a i d of f i r e  feeling,"  the f a c e s o f those around  (a t o o l o f e x o r c i s t s ) .  the possessed him o r her  Someone possessed by a  77 l h a , on the o t h e r hand, w i l l become much more imposing, directly she  into  the f a c e s of o t h e r s , and  immediately  gaze  announce t h a t he  or  is a certain lha. The  t r u t h o f the p o s s e s s i n g l h a ' s statements  another way.  When a new  o r a c l e i s brought i n t o the presence  h i g h lama or o r a c l e such as  the Nechung, the l a t t e r o r d e r s  p r o s p e c t i v e o r a c l e to e n t e r t r a n c e and  of a very  the  throws "mantra" g r a i n s  seeds which have been empowered through him o r her.  i s tested i n  (mustard  the m e d i t a t i o n s o f lamas) on  I f the o r a c l e i s the a c t u a l l h a , he can " d i g e s t the  power" of these g r a i n s ; i f the o r a c l e i s f a l s e , he must come out of trance. new  The Nechung O r a c l e c u s t o m a r i l y entered  o r a c l e and  threw g r a i n s a t him  trance along with  to determine h i s l e g i t i m a c y  (Nebesky-Wojkowitz 1956:419), presumably a d i r e c t c h a l l e n g e from lha  to  The  Klu  the  one  another.  K l u , who those b e i n g s possessing  a r e somewhat a k i n to the I n d i a n naga, a r e among  ranked  below humans In the c o s m o l o g i c a l h i e r a r c h y b u t  superhuman powers.  The k l u and  sa-bdags ( l a n d l o r d s o f the s o i l ) guard h e a r t h , and  the f e r t i l i t y o f  the p u r i t y o f water,  the l a n d .  The  b e g i n s w i t h the p o i s o n i n g of a l a k e , and departure  c l a r i t y of the water.  and  Ortner notes  famine.  Her  T i b e t a n opera  the subsequent  o f the klu-mo (a k l u queen), who  o f crops and  their close r e l a t i v e s ,  had  ensured  departure  the  the  Nor-bzang  immediate the abundance  results in  the k l u " c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f being  drought  closely  78 concerned w i t h people and to any  infringement  - meat, m i l k ,  despoiled. afflict  upon t h e i r environment from "burning a n i m a l matter  thus, a r e The  K l u a r e always s e a r c h i n g forced  the  the human p e r p e t r a t o r s  j o i n t s , and  appearance, and,  of  sa-bdag to such o f f e n s e s  of such a c t i o n s w i t h  to  i s to  disease,  the s k i n such as b o i l s , i n f e c t i o n s ,  leprosy.  Such d i s e a s e s would a f f e c t one's  t h e r e f o r e , one's p r e s e n t a t i o n  status i n Tibetan  for a clean place  to move on whenever t h e i r h a b i t a t i s  response of k l u and  e s p e c i a l l y with diseases swollen  so on - i n  to the p o l l u t i o n o f streams or l a k e s w i t h human  (1978b:279).  l i v e , and,  t h e i r extreme s e n s i t i v i t y  h a i r , n a i l s , bloody c l o t h e s , and  household f i r e " excreta  t h e i r a f f a i r s " and  o f s e l f , an a s p e c t  of  society.  K l u a r e known to be l e s s s e n t i e n t than humans and exasperated p a r e n t s to c h i d e  inspire  t h e i r c h i l d r e n w i t h the s i m i l a r i t y  of  t h e i r b e h a v i o r to t h a t o f k l u , b e h a v i o r t h a t i s i r a s c i b l e , r e l e n t l e s s , and to seek any  unforgiving.  lama a d v i s e d  f r i e n d s h i p w i t h k l u , t h a t one  a t the mere s i g h t o f one. whether o r not  i t be  Klu, l i k e  t h a t I t Is b e t t e r  not  might indeed become s i c k  K l u never f o r g e t an i n s u l t or i n j u r y ,  i n t e n t i o n a l , and  p e r s i s t e n t anger i f n o t  structured  One  are c h a r a c t e r i z e d by  a  appeased.  the l h a , a r e s o c i a l c r e a t u r e s whose s o c i e t y i s  i n t o f o u r c a s t e s - the r g y a - g l i n g or r o y a l f a m i l y , bram-ze  or p r i e s t s , dmangs-rig o r commoners, and, r e c a l c i t r a n t e v i l doers.  finally,  Each " c a s t e " , as T i b e t a n s  the dor-pa  or  literally  c a t e g o r i z e k l u , would have i t s a r i s t o c r a t s , f a m i l y r e t a i n e r s , and general  followers.  While the f i r s t  three c a s t e s w i t h the e x c e p t i o n  of  c e r t a i n r o y a l k l u a r e d i s t i n g u i s h e d as white and g e n e r a l l y h e l p f u l to humans, the m a l e v o l e n t klu  dor pa and c e r t a i n k l u k i n g s a r e b l a c k .  White  must be appeased; b l a c k k l u , e x o r c i z e d . White k l u a r e p r o p i t i a t e d w i t h " g i v i n g s " ( s i n c e they rank beneath  humans on the c o s m o l o g i c a l s c a l e ) o f three w h i t e substances b u t t e r , and c u r d ) and three sweet substances sugar, and honey). resulted  I n the event  (white sugar,  t h a t a person's  illness  (milk, brown  o r i n j u r y has  from h i s o r h e r p h y s i c a l l y harming a k l u by, f o r example,  a c c i d e n t a l l y s t e p p i n g on the k l u ' s arm o r l e g , the k l u i s a l s o o f f e r e d medicine  specifically  designed  to cure i t s l i m b .  k l u ' s hand has been i n j u r e d , a c e r t a i n f r u i t resembling pulverized  I f the a hand i s  i n t o a m e d i c i n a l i n g r e d i e n t and g i v e n to the k l u , such as  b e f i t s homeopathic l o g i c .  A h a b i t a t p l e a s i n g to k l u , such as a  p a t c h o f g r a s s on a p l a t f o r m f e s t o o n e d w i t h p r a y e r f l a g s and b a r l e y cakes (gtor-ma),  might a l s o be p r e s e n t e d .  I n the appeasement o f k l u , the s t r i c t observance o f r i t u a l c o n t e x t i s as important as i s the p r e s t a t i o n i t s e l f . of  the r i t u a l must n o t e a t meat o r have a n y t h i n g  day o f the ceremony. critical.  The o f f i c i a n t s  to do w i t h blood the  Furthermore, the t i m i n g o f the r i t u a l i s  I f i t i s performed on the wrong d a t e ,  the zhal-'adon  (meaning r e l i g i o u s r i t u a l o r p u j a i n H i n d i ) might have a r e v e r s e e f f e c t - that i s , antagonize  r a t h e r than appease the k l u .  A s t r o l o g i c a l c a l c u l a t i o n s can f o r e c a s t the o c c a s i o n s o f k l u meetings, p a r t i e s , or general get-togethers.  Tibetan l o g i c d i c t a t e s that r i t u a l  p r o p i t i a t i o n s o f k l u prove most e f f e c t i v e when the k l u themselves a r e h a v i n g a b i g p a r t y s i n c e the p r e s t a t i o n s w i l l augment the food s t o c k s  80 o f the k l u h o s t s .  But i f  k l u a r e e n t i c e d to a r i t u a l d u r i n g  p e r i o d of h i b e r n a t i o n or p e r i o d s o f r e t r e a t , their  their  their  sleep i s disturbed,  own r u l e s a r e b r o k e n , and the e f f e c t s of these v i o l a t i o n s can  prove harmful t o humans.  j  Dharmsala i s r e p l e t e w i t h t a l e s of those who have s u f f e r e d klu  from  attacks:  (1)  There was a man who c u t wood f o r the monastery.  became s i c k and bent o v e r . a c t i o n of k l u .  (2)  klu.  No c u r e c o u l d be found because i t  s u f f e r e d b o i l s on h i s hand.  When a monk  the a r c h i t e c t was informed t h a t the b o i l s were caused by  S i n c e the a r c h i t e c t had so much c o n t a c t w i t h c o n t r a c t o r s and  builders,  (3)  some of the k l u ' s d i s p l e a s u r e had c a r r i e d over t o h i m .  One young man, whose i n f a n t  d i s e a s e , had f i n a l l y  son s u f f e r e d from a s e r i o u s k l u  r e s o r t e d t o Western medicine and had moved h i s  w i f e and son t o a l o c a l Western c l i n i c . their  was the  The man had c u t too many t r e e s .  An a r c h i t e c t  noticed t h i s ,  One day he  o r i g i n a l home, I  n o t i c e d the young man washing the  cooking p o t s i n the t r i c k l e c l o s e to a l a r g e w e l l . u n l e s s they were f i r s t  B e f o r e the f a m i l y ' s r e t u r n  to  family  o f water coming from a f a u c e t which was  He was a f r a i d  to d i p the pots i n the w e l l  very c l e a n , s i n c e k l u were known t o i n h a b i t  w e l l and might take o b j e c t i o n t o d i r t y  pots.  I  looked a t i t ,  somewhat run-down w e l l w i t h g r a s s and p l a n t s growing from i t s b r i c k s , and suggested t h a t i t  the  a broken  looked l i k e a p l a c e where k l u might  81 dwell.  To t h i s the young man  r e p l i e d with a warning to me not to talk  about them and a suggestion that I go to have some tea.  (4)  A young boy who  accidentally crushed a frog (one form of  klu) while shutting a door, broke out i n a skin rash for two weeks as a result.  (5)  A young g i r l b i t t e n by a mad  dog, was also discovered to be  suffering from a klu attack, when her family consulted an oracle.  In  her case, the e f f i c i e n t cause of the attack was not her responsibility.  Someone, the oracle revealed, had c a r e l e s s l y tossed a  n a i l c l i p p i n g on the ground and had thereby polluted the home of certain klu.  A bird ate the c l i p p i n g and then died.  The b i r d , i n  turn, was eaten by a dog, and the dog, as a r e s u l t , became rabid. mad  dog then b i t the g i r l .  The  The i l l n e s s e s of the b i r d , dog, and the  g i r l were a l l a consequence of the klu's rage.  The g i r l was  cured  a f t e r the oracle managed to suck a small stone dog from her body, and her family made prestations to the k l u .  The c u l p r i t who  committed  the offense against the klu suffered no r e t r i b u t i o n because h i s rlung-rta was high.  The g i r l ' s rlung-rta, however, was,  of her attack, very  low.  (6)  at the time  One young monk provided the following account of h i s  encounter with k l u :  "One  day a few years ago we monks went to the Tibetan Children's  Village  for a s p e c i a l puja.  we younger ones had s h o r t c u t ) back and before  to walk.  We  n o t on every  about a n y t h i n g  o l d e r monks got  Therefore,  were r a c i n g to see  the jeep d i d .  although  The  day,  t h a t I was  was  tried  to h e l p me  some time.  but I was  not  (the  The  day,  thinking  too f a s t and  hands, and  should  I my  fell face  and  o t h e r boys (young monks)  to walk even w i t h  I d i d n o t f e e l any  the o u t s i d e .  I was  this  I j u s t k e p t on running.  minutes.  not able  Although I f e l l ,  stunned f e e l i n g on  going  knees, the palms o f my  unconscious f o r about 10-15  but  c o u l d reach McGleod Ganj  I happened to be ahead.  but suddenly f e l t  h i t t i n g my  i f we  took the middle road  o f t e n used to r a c e each o t h e r and  s t o p , b u t I c o u l d not stop myself. f a c e forward,  we  to r i d e i n j e e p s ,  their help for  pain inside,  just a  We were i n a h u r r y but I had  to move  slowly. Blood was  coming from my  Gorkha F o u n t a i n  (a f o u n t a i n which was  thought to wash i t o f f . d i s h e s and blood o f f . not  I was  t h i n k any  and  it.  b u i l t by  not  not  Then I washed  ointment. wounds.  c o u l d e x p l a i n why  to come back w i t h him I went w i t h him  Then I r e t u r n e d  The  f i r s t n i g h t 1 f e l t n o t h i n g and  The  second n i g h t my  a t your face!"  the  the Gorkha R i f l e s ) , I  d i d not  think anything  the  others I would  be.  to h i s h o t e l where he put  the ointment  to the monastery.  face began to s w e l l .  But I d i d not  and  their  there, I d i d  t h i n k i n g about i t . The  they would not be l a t e and  bandages on my  passed  t h i n k i n g a t the time t h a t k l u l i v e d  were there, I was  bandages and  as we  There were some Western h i p p i e s washing  Western h i p p i e i n v i t e d me  he had  hands, and,  c l o t h e s i n the f o u n t a i n a t t h a t time.  went ahead so One  f a c e and  think anything Monks s a i d ,  of i t . By  about  "Oh,  the'third  look or  fourth day, however,rayface was so swollen I could not see.  One boy  went to a high Rinpoche (reincarnated lama) for mo (dice) divination. The Rinpoche threw mo and discovered that I was being attacked by klu. The Rinpoche then asked the boy to find out from me what had happened the past few days.  The boy asked me and I thought, "1 have been in  the temple doing zhal-'adon the past few days and nothing happened." Then finally I thought about falling down and washing i n the fountain. The boy returned to the Rinpoche with my story, but the Rinpoche had already thrown mo and informed the boy that I had washed in the fountain and offended the klu. He prescribed the appropriate zhal-'adon to be performed in order to please the klu. So I had four monks from the monastery perform the ritual. such as incense and sweet things that klu like.  They gathered items Then, when the  zhal-'adon was finished, I took those items to the Gorkha fountain. No other monks were with me, since, i f their rlung-rta was high, i t would prevent the klu from appearing. I set the ritual offerings down by the fountain and apologized to the klu in three languages - Tibetan, Hindi, and then English because the Rinpoche advised that I did not know which language the klu might speak. blood off here. so, e t c '  I said, 'Klu, please forgive me for washing my If I had known you were here, I never would have done  That night the swelling went down, so the klu had accepted  ray apology."'''  The interpretation of rlung-rta and its relationship to the young monk is a subject I w i l l elaborate upon in Chapter VII.  For the  present,  t h e p o i n t t o be made i s t h a t t h e young monk i n i t i a l l y  to accept  r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r h i s o f f e n s e a g a i n s t t h e k l u , but t h e  Rinpoche had r e c o g n i z e d upon.  refused  t h a t t h e s t a t u s o f t h e k l u had been i n f r i n g e d  Humans and k l u occupy a d j a c e n t  niches  i n Tibetan  cosmological  h i e r a r c h y and can have r e c i p r o c a l e f f e c t s upon one a n o t h e r .  One adage  s t a t e s t h a t humans can d e t e c t t h e s k i n c a s t o f f by snakes (who a r e a l s o a form o f k l u ) and t h a t k l u can see t h e s k i n c a s t o f f by humans, but n e i t h e r humans nor k l u a r e aware o f t h e i r own sloughed skins.  Ortner  s t r e s s e s t h a t t h e "touchy" c h a r a c t e r o f k l u d e r i v e s  from t h e i r " g r e a t s u s c e p t i b i l i t y and s e n s i t i v i t y " t o human p o l l u t i o n of t h e i r environment (1978b:279).  Anyone s u f f e r i n g from a k l u d i s e a s e  i s g u i l t y o f committing a moral t r a n s g r e s s i o n w i t h r e s p e c t t o k l u by s u l l y i n g t h e i r h a b i t a t , causing t h e i r own s o c i a l r e g u l a t i o n s .  them p h y s i c a l i n j u r y , o r d i s r u p t i n g However, k l u who r e t a l i a t e  human a f f r o n t s a r e n o t e x o r c i z e d but appeased. morally  appropriate  k l u , humans a r e e n j o i n e d  The  T h e i r vengeance i s  because human r e s p e c t f o r k l u s t a t u s and i t s  concomitants was n o t f o r t h c o m i n g .  t o be m i n d f u l  against  Despite  t h e lower cosmic r a n k i n g o f  through t h e d e c r e e s o f d i v i n e r s and o r a c l e s  o f t h e l e g i t i m a t e c l a i m s o f these i n f e r i o r  creatures.  t e r r i t o r y o f humans and t h a t o f k l u n e c e s s a r i l y o v e r l a p s and,  perhaps, i l l u s t r a t e s Dumont's c o n t e n t i o n negotiated  t h a t t h e problem t o be  i s n o t t h e ownership o f t h e l a n d , but "a complementarity  between d i f f e r e n t r i g h t s b e a r i n g  on t h e same o b j e c t " (1970:201).  85  The IntentionalIty of the Gift  Thus far, I have discussed two cosmological levels requiring appeasements, whether these appeasements be "offerings up" (mchod-pa pul-ba) or "givings down" (dge-ba gtong-ba), the nature of lha and klu, their beneficial or detrimental effects upon humans, and their reactions to insult or injury in response to infringements upon their statuses.  But one significant factor remains to be considered -  the intentionality of Tibetan appeasement. The four following examples illustrate a concern with the intentions of the donor:  (1) Seven water bowls are considered to be the "best" offering one may make to a lha since when butter lamps are burned, one may be too attached to the expense of the butter or o i l used to burn the lamps. If there^is some attachment to the butter because of its cost, the meaning of the offering is lost.  Water, on the other hand, is free  and the offerer would not form an attachment to i t .  (2) Once a man and his dog were travelling the mountains and f e l l into a huge ice crevasse.  Both managed to land safely and, after a few  days, the man grew accustomed to his new situation. though he was starving, his dog had grown fat. licking something which the man decided to try.  He noticed that  The dog had been I t was a  wish-fulfilling gem (norbu) and instantly sated the man's appetite.  When summer arrived, a dragon flew into the crevasse and  p i c k e d up the norbu of  the dragon's  very beautiful.  The man grabbed  The l h a asked  the man what he d e s i r e d , and, though  the man e x p r e s s e d h i s wish to r e j o i n h i s w i f e and  The l h a agreed  to t h i s b u t i n s i s t e d  t h a t he f i r s t a s k f o r  a n y t h i n g he wanted and take p r e s e n t s w i t h him. silks,  hold  t a i l and was c a r r i e d up to heaven where e v e r y t h i n g was  heaven was e n t i c i n g , children.  to l i c k as i t flew skyward.  which were packed  The man chose g o l d and  i n a sack f o r h i s j o u r n e y .  Upon the man's  r e t u r n to h i s f a m i l y , he n a r r a t e d the s t o r y o f h i s j o u r n e y and boasted of  h i s new w e a l t h .  However, when he opened the sack, he found  that  a l l he had were s m a l l s t r i p s o f c l o t h and a few t i n y b i t s o f g o l d .  This  t a l e , as my i n f o r m a n t p o i n t e d o u t , s a t i r i z e s  the human  c o n v i c t i o n t h a t the l h a and k l u a r e q u i t e s a t i s f i e d w i t h b e i n g t o l d o f the  riches  to be p r e s e n t e d to them and w i t h r e c e i v i n g s m a l l p i e c e s o f  s i l k c l o t h , a few c o i n s , e t c . (which a r e common r i t u a l A b i t of c l o t h or coins s u f f i c e s of  prestations).  to symbolize the g i f t .  the l h a ' s g i f t must e q u a l l y supercede  the g i f t  The i n t e n t i o n  itself in  importance.  (3)  One day a man a r r i v e d a t a w e l l where k l u were known to l i v e and  d e f e c a t e d on the edge o f the w e l l .  The man Informed  had p r e s e n t e d them w i t h a golden water p o t (bum-pa). man c o n t i n u e d on h i s way, another man approached shocked a t the s i g h t o f excrement  on i t s r i m .  the k l u that he While  this  the w e l l and was  As he c l e a n e d the w e l l ,  he s p e c u l a t e d a l o u d as to who might have committed  such a n a s t y deed.  T h i s second man was thus r e s p o n s i b l e f o r a r o u s i n g the wrath o f the k l u  and  became very  Two  ill.  explanations  were: (1)  t h a t as  provided  the k l u had  f o r t h i s s t o r y from the same i n f o r m a n t been convinced p r e v i o u s l y  t h a t they  had  r e c e i v e d a handsome g i f t b e f i t t i n g  t h e i r importance, they were a l l the  more incensed  t h o u g h t l e s s n e s s o f the second  a t the  i n so i n f o r m i n g  them; and  s u f f i c i e n t l y high avoid  t r u t h and (2)  the  t h a t the f i r s t man's r l u n g - r t a  to e n a b l e him  l o g i c a l outcome of  i n t e n t i o n s " was  the u n w i t t i n g  a debasement o f  quintessential point,  very  second man's "good  the s t a t u s presumed by  discuss  i n Chapter V I I .  i t s u f f i c e s to note t h a t the i n t e n t i o n s o f  though o s t e n s i b l y d i r e c t e d towards c o r r e c t i n g a a c t u a l l y debased the s t a t u s o f t h e i r g u l l i b i l i t y and  the k l u .  the k l u .  He  For  residence).  The  the second  second man,  then, became r e s p o n s i b l e  f a r worse than the a p p r o p r i a t e l y  a l b e i t p o l l u t i n g g i f t from the f i r s t  States,  the r e t u r n of the T i b e t a n s  up  l a c k of i n t e l l i g e n c e by d i r e c t i n g a t t e n t i o n to  v i o l a t i o n served  For  man,  i n d i r e c t l y pointed  the p r e r o g a t i v e s  (4)  in  transgression,  e t h i c a l v i o l a t i o n of him  A  the  t h e i r p o l l u t e d home, (a s i t u a t i o n which f o r c e s them to s e a r c h new  yet  low.  the importance o f one's r l u n g - r t a l e v e l , as  the young monk's t a l e , I w i l l present,  was  to t r e a t the k l u so r e c k l e s s l y and  t h e i r wrath, w h i l e the second man's r l u n g - r t a was The  man  of status.  This  for a  for his  ethical proferred,  man.  the D a l a i Lama from h i s 1980  o f Dharmsala b u i l t  tour of  the  three d i f f e r e n t g a t e s  which the D a l a i Lama's entourage would p a s s .  The  United  through  f i r s t gate to  r e c e i v e the motorcade was decorated w i t h  the i n t r i c a t e p a i n t i n g c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f  frames of the monasteries bordered  the work o f young government o f f i c i a l s  and  temples of Lhasa.  w i t h p i n e branches and  supported  and  the door  A second gate  was  a banner of welcome.  The  t h i r d gate, which l e a d s i n t o McCleod Ganj, d i s p l a y e d e l a b o r a t e l y f a s h i o n e d s i l k brocade banners. offerings  These gates were c o n s t r u c t e d  as  to the D a l a i Lama and as an e x p r e s s i o n of happiness a t h i s  r e t u r n , but  the g a t e s , as was  g e n e r a l l y known, a l s o r e p r e s e n t e d  a  f r i e n d l y c o m p e t i t i o n amongst three major neighborhoods o f Dharmsala. While many were aware t h a t a c o m p e t i t i o n was T i b e t a n was  very much d i s p l e a s e d w i t h  he s a i d , each gate was  an o f f e r i n g  t a k i n g p l a c e , one  young  the c o m p e t i t i v e s p i r i t s i n c e , as  to the D a l a i Lama.  H i s o b j e c t i o n , then, expresses  an i d e a l ,  t h a t an o f f e r i n g  i s not  an o f f e r i n g i f i t i s a l s o the donor's e n t r y i n t o some c o m p e t i t i o n , competition  enhancing the p r e s t i g e of the winner.  however, the v e r y process donors, and,  In p r a c t i c e ,  of r e c o r d i n g the names and amounts g i v e n  i n c e r t a i n contexts,  the p u b l i c announcement of  i n f o r m a t i o n , s t i m u l a t e s the amount o f p u b l i c o f f e r i n g w h i l e this  a  by  such subverting  ideal.  Conclus i o n  The  d i r e c t i v e o f appeasements i n T i b e t a n c u r i n g r i t u a l s  i s to  l e g i t i m a t e o r r e c o n f i r m the s t a t u s o f l h a and k l u w i t h r e s p e c t to humans. these  two  W h i l s t humans may  come i n t o c o n f l i c t w i t h both l h a and k l u ,  c a t e g o r i e s of numina never c o n f l i c t w i t h each o t h e r .  I t is  humans who must take r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the "alignment" o f s t a t u s . S i n c e appeasements a r e p r o f f e r e d  to l h a and k l u when humans have  s u f f e r e d as a r e s u l t o f i g n o r i n g o r i n f r i n g i n g upon the p r i v i l e g e s o f l h a o r k l u s t a t u s , the l o g i c emerging from the young man's d i s t r e s s a t competitive  o f f e r i n g s i s t h a t humans cannot pursue t h e i r own s t a t u s  i n t e r e s t when a p p e a s i n g the s t a t u s  i n t e r e s t of others  ( t h e l h a and the  k l u ) , who a r e the more o r l e s s immediate neighbors o f humans i n the Tibetan  cosraological hierarchy.  Important as appeasements a r e In humbling the p a t i e n t and enhancing the s t a t u s o f offended  l h a and k l u , o r i n r e - n e g o t i a t i n g  the s t a t u s o f the p a t i e n t v i s - a - v i s t h a t o f the numina,  the s u c c e s s f u l  cure seems to depend n o t upon the p a t i e n t ' s s k i l l a t s e l f - e f f a c e m e n t , but  r a t h e r upon h i s o r h e r r l u n g - r t a .  NOTES  1. S u d h i r Kakar (1982) d e s c r i b e s t h i s same i n c i d e n c e o f k l u a t t a c k . H i s r e s e a r c h a s s i s t a n t came to Dharmsala f o r two weeks i n an attempt to g a t h e r data on T i b e t a n r i t u a l c u r i n g , and r e q u e s t e d my h e l p . I i n t r o d u c e d him to the young monk, and we were both p r e s e n t as the young monk recounted h i s i l l n e s s episode. The young monk, however, was not, as Kakar s t a t e s (1982:111), one o f " N a g p a l l a ' s " p a t i e n t s . The young monk appealed to a venerated Dge-lugs-pa Rinpoche f o r a d i a g n o s i s and p r e s c r i p t i v e r i t u a l .  91  CHAPTER IV  THE  As Turner has  AMBIVALENCE OF  HIERARCHICAL ASCENT  shown, i n a s o c i e t y w i t h o u t c e n t r a l i z e d  i n s t i t u t i o n s , such as  t h a t of  r e l a t i o n s h i p s are expressly  the Ndembu, d i s t u r b e d  political  social  thought to m a n i f e s t themselves i n  i l l n e s s e s (1967:51).  However, i n the g r e a t m e d i c a l t r a d i t i o n s o f A s i a  - Ayurvedic, Tibetan,  and  centralized  systems and  political  Chinese - which have emerged w i t h s t r i c t social hierarchies,  disease  i s commonly found to r e s u l t from an i n t e r n a l imbalance of b o d i l y humours o r e n e r g i e s  and  the e x t e r n a l cosmos.  This  e t i o l o g y , endemic  to the n o n - b i o m e d i c a l " g r e a t m e d i c a l t r a d i t i o n s " , suggests, then,  that  the  to  i n t e r - r e l a t i o n s of  be v i t a l "great  to d i s e a s e  the p a t i e n t ' s c l o s e k i n are not c o n s i d e r e d  diagnosis  or cure.  t r a d i t i o n s " i s o f t e n addressed  a p a t i e n t ' s " i n n e r b a l a n c e " and t h i s endeavor to s y n c h r o n i z e astral  D i a g n o s t i c a t t e n t i o n In  to the l a c k o f synchrony between  a s t r o l o g i c a l harmony.  the p a t i e n t ' s  t r a j e c t o r i e s i s a masking of  of  that  the o b l i g a t i o n s humans bear Since  the  the s t a r s are beyond the reach o f human  m a n i p u l a t i o n s , i t i s the p a t i e n t ' s adjusted  I suggest  "inner workings" with  towards the s o c i a l s t r u c t u r e or the s o c i a l h i e r a r c h y . peregrinations  these  i n n e r humours which must be  to conform to cosmic rhythms.  I f the cosmos i s a  symbolic  92 p r o j e c t i o n o f the f i x e d n e s s of s o c i a l h i e r a r c h y , then the p a t i e n t must r e a l i g n h i m s e l f o r h e r s e l f to concur w i t h  these s o c i a l d i c t a t e s .  One maxim which seemingly i s u n i v e r s a l to h i e r a r c h i e s Is a systematic -i.e.,  p r e s c r i p t i o n f o r ascending  o r descending i n the h i e r a r c h y  the l e g i t i m a t e means f o r t r a n s c e n d i n g  concomitantly,  one's s t a t u s and,  the c a t e g o r y o f e r r o r s which would impel one's  i n the h i e r a r c h y .  I n Chapter I I I , I d i s c u s s e d  a s s i g n the p a t i e n t moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y  descent  the c o n t e x t which might  f o r h i s or her i l l n e s s .  This  moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y a r i s e s from the p a t i e n t ' s i n d i f f e r e n c e o r n e g l e c t o f the s t a t u s p r e r o g a t i v e s o f s u p e r n a t u r a l b e i n g s . we say about i l l n e s s e s r e s u l t i n g i l l n e s s e s which T i b e t a n s responsibility?  But what then can  from a t t a c k by e v i l  spirits,  do n o t diagnose a s the p a t i e n t ' s  Such i l l n e s s e s , I w i l l argue, a r e a l s o the r e s u l t of  moral t r a n s g r e s s i o n s a g a i n s t the c o s m o l o g i c a l  hierarchy, but this  time  they a r e the t r a n s g r e s s i o n s o f demons. Demons, u n l i k e humans, do n o t d i r e c t l y s u p e r i o r s , y e t they  insult  their  t r a n s g r e s s a g a i n s t the h i e r a r c h y .  status  What then do  demons do, o r , more a p p r o p r i a t e l y , e x a c t l y what i s i t t h a t demons want?  T h i s q u e s t i o n has n o t gone unargued I n t h e o l o g i c a l and  p h i l o s o p h i c a l c i r c l e s and i s b e g i n n i n g anthropologists.  Kapferer,  to be addressed by  i n his analysis of Sinhalese  exorcisms,  views demons as b o t h a symbol o f the s u b j u g a t i o n o f lower c l a s s e s and. as an a n t i - s t r u c t u r a l  element:  Demons when they a t t a c k a r e fearsome beings o f domination who i s o l a t e t h e i r v i c t i m s In a h o r r i f y i n g r e a l i t y and determine t h e i r e v e r y a c t i o n . I n many ways, t h e r e f o r e , demonic a t t a c k symbolizes the s u b o r d i n a t i o n o f a S i n h a l e s e  93 working c l a s s and p e a s a n t r y who are caught i n an obdurate w o r l d , weakened i n i t s s t r u c t u r e , and who a r e s o c i a l l y and p o l i t i c a l l y fragmented by economic and p o l i t i c a l f o r c e s beyond t h e i r c o n t r o l . Demons are the t e r r o r s which prowl a t the base of the h i e r a r c h y . But a l s o , l i k e t h e i r working c l a s s and peasant v i c t i m s , demons are the c o n t r a d i c t i o n o f an o r d e r i n which they are n o r m a l l y subjugated and a r e a hidden power w a i t i n g to break f r e e (1983:35-36).  Tibetan l a t e r , do n o t  demons, however, f o r reasons which w i l l become c l e a r e x i s t p r e c i s e l y a t the "base of  the h i e r a r c h y "  they n e c e s s a r i l y c o n s t i t u t e an element of a n t i - s t r u c t u r e . may  be drawn i n p a r t from some of  0 ' F l a h e r t y i n her  the c o n c l u s i o n s  i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of Hindu demons.  example, t h a t somewhere between the w r i t i n g o f Puranas the demons tumbled out o f heaven, and usually  reached  the ones who  She  the Rg  e s t a b l i s h e d a cosmos c o n s i s t i n g o f heaven and  Vedic  however, c o n s t r u c t e d  a  to both w o r l d s .  The  m i r r o r e d by an underworld p o p u l a t e d w i t h demons and world mountain (Meru), which p r o v i d e d a s t a i r w a y or demonic a s c e t i c s (1976:81). and  Veda and  the means to n e g o t i a t e  the gods  the  divine  men  transactions on e a r t h  the gods were  connected by  T h e r e f o r e , the cosmos was  possibilities  threatening  the p e r i o d ,  to the gods and  a  to heaven f o r humans  the a s c e n t to heaven was  Brahmanic p r i e s t s o f  and  period,  re-mapped,  p r o v i d e d by  a c q u i s i t i o n o f r e l i g i o u s power. The  are  period  Puranic  t r i - p a r t i t e cosmos, heaven and  case  by  e a r t h where  were conducted e x c l u s i v e l y between gods i n heaven and demons were an e x t e r i o r t h r e a t  Their  n o t e s t h a t "the  The  do  finds, for  make demons i n t o demons, because of  d i s i n c l i n a t i o n to share heaven" (1976:66).  nor  however, found such to t h e i r v o c a t i o n ,  and  the  authored  t e x t s d e s c r i b i n g a p p r o p r i a t e and  o b t a i n i n g r e l i g i o u s power. prescribed r i t u a l  While  i n a p p r o p r i a t e methods o f  those who  conformed  to the  sphere were regarded as e t h i c a l , a s c e t i c s ,  who  a c h i e v e t h e i r power through i n d i v i d u a l a c t i o n , were " m o r t a l s  who  aspired  to r e l i g i o u s power o u t s i d e the r i t u a l sphere" and  the r o l e o f demons i n the cosmic masque" (1976:80). 0 ' F l a h e r t y notes  "inherited  In this  way,  t h a t e v i l e n t e r e d the system and cosmology became  "ethically dualized".  I n a d d i t i o n , Hindu  gods, demons, and  mortals  began to compete f o r a l i m i t e d good - "power, I m m o r t a l i t y , heaven" (1976:81). A c c o r d i n g to K a p f e r e r , the S i n h a l e s e B u d d h i s t cosmic h i e r a r c h y ranks s u p e r n a t u r a l beings w i t h r e s p e c t to the degree f o l l o w B u d d h i s t t e a c h i n g s o r a r e committed (1983:114).  to which they  to the B u d d h i s t p a t h  But the T i b e t a n cosmic h i e r a r c h y , drawing  from  the  P u r a n i c t h e o r i e s , o c c a s i o n a l l y a s s i g n s r a t h e r u n e t h i c a l beings to relatively high places. ("god-not-is") who  Such beings are e x e m p l i f i e d by  rank above humans but below the l h a .  mythology p i t s Devas ( l h a ) a g a i n s t Asuras a l s o , as E l i a d e suggests (1976:59), between the two.  may  lha-ma-yln  Vedic  ( l h a - m a - y i n ) , but  p o i n t s up a " c o n s u b s t a n t i a l i t y "  T h i s c o n s u b s t a n t i a l l t y p e r s i s t s d e s p i t e the P u r a n i c  t o p o g r a p h i c expansion of the cosmos and ranking close  the  to the gods.  guarantees  the Asuras a  Such a h i g h p o s i t i o n f o r them, however,  have proved somewhat p r o b l e m a t i c f o r the P u r a n i c d e s i r e to  e t h i c i z e the newly formed  hierarchy.  0 ' F l a h e r t y n o t e s t h a t the  P u r a n i c e t h i c i z a t i o n of the c o n f l i c t between Deva and Asura  resulted  i n the replacement o f the o p p o s i t i o n god/demon w i t h g o o d / e v i l o r  "enlightened/proud" The  Tibetans  (1976:61). took t h i s c o n f l i c t s e r i o u s l y as may  f o l l o w i n g a c c o u n t of the " w i s h - f u l f i l l i n g  be seen i n the  tree":  D u r i n g the time of Buddha, a l o n g time ago, there was a b i g t r e e growing i n the u n i v e r s e . Though the r o o t s of the t r e e were i n a kingdom populated by lha-ma-yin, i t s branches were i n l h a - y u l (gods' c o u n t r y ) . T h e r e f o r e , the l h a were always e n j o y i n g the f r u i t s o f t h i s t r e e , f r u i t s which would p r o v i d e a n y t h i n g the e a t e r d e s i r e d . The lha-ma-yin were not p l e a s e d w i t h t h i s s i t u a t i o n and b e l i e v e d t h a t s i n c e the r o o t s o f the t r e e were i n t h e i r l a n d , the l h a were e n j o y i n g the f r u i t u n j u s t i f i a b l y . The lha-ma-yin, t h e r e f o r e , d e c l a r e d war a g a i n s t the l h a . A g r e a t war p e r s i s t e d f o r a v e r y long time and the lha-ma-yIn were s l o w l y g e t t i n g the b e t t e r of the l h a . I f the l h a were d e f e a t e d , then the Buddhist r e l i g i o n would be a f f e c t e d because the l h a p r o v i d e p r o t e c t i o n f o r the r e l i g i o n . T h e r e f o r e , the l h a requested a p r e v i o u s L o r d Buddha (not the p r e s e n t one) to p r o v i d e them w i t h a s o l u t i o n . The Buddha r e p l i e d , "Appease Dgra-lha ( t h e god o f war) and o b t a i n h e l p from him." The l h a then took n i n e weapons to Dgra-lha and performed pujas r e q u e s t i n g h i s a i d , o f f e r i n g him many t h i n g s . F i n a l l y , Dgra-lha agreed to h e l p . He conquered the l h a -ma-yin and e s t a b l i s h e d , once and f o r a l l , the d i s p o s i t i o n of the f r u i t s from the w i s h - f u l f i l l i n g t r e e . From t h i s time on, we T i b e t a n s have sought Dgra-lha's p r o t e c t i o n i n a war.  T h i s account presents present,  a number of i n t e r e s t i n g i s s u e s , but f o r the  the p o i n t of n o t e i s t h a t the l h a , who  o f r e l i g i o n ' , were l o s i n g .  are  the  'protectors  T h e i r p l a c e , though below t h a t of  Buddhas, l e g i t i m a t e l y r e s t s w e l l above everyone e l s e ' s and power c o u l d be e f f e c t i v e l y c h a l l e n g e d The  primal s i n of  determination  by  those  yet  the their  r a n k i n g beneath them.  the demon appears to be h i s or  her  to buck the r u l e s o f h i e r a r c h y o r , r a t h e r , to assume the  b e n e f i t s o f the upper e c h e l o n  through w i l l f u l ,  independent a c t i o n and  the s e i z u r e o f u n s a n c t i o n e d s u c c i n c t l y puts  power.  T h i s demonic " s i n " , as K a p f e r e r so  i t , i s t h a t "demons t r a n s g r e s s the r u l e s o f movement  through the cosmic h i e r a r c h y , which i s dependent on both a t r a n s f o r m a t i o n i n appearance and a t r a n s f o r m a t i o n i n the a t t i t u d e and essence o f t h e i r b e i n g " up  (1983:126).  the h i e r a r c h y through the t r i c k s  senses o f f e n d s  The p o t e n t i a l movement o f demons they a r e wont to p l a y on the  those who s u b s c r i b e to the n o t i o n o f a s y s t e m a t i c and  e t h i c a l p r o g r e s s i o n ' through the ranks', and a t t a c k s  the p r i n c i p l e s  s t r u c t u r i n g h i e r a r c h y — i . e . , the power o f Buddha's t e a c h i n g s . Kapferer  l a b e l s i t i n v e r t i n g "the s t r u c t u r e o f d e t e r m i n a t i o n s  cosmic o r d e r " I suggest  i n the  (1983:126). t h a t what d i s t i n g u i s h e s S i n h a l e s e from T i b e t a n demons  a r e the c r i t e r i a by which r a n k i n g  i n the h i e r a r c h i c a l s t r u c t u r e o f the  r e s p e c t i v e demonic realms i s determined.  F o r the S i n h a l e s e ,  Kapferer  argues t h a t more h i g h l y ranked demons a r e somewhat persuaded by the Buddha's t e a c h i n g s , w h i l e the e x t e n t  the more l o w l y demons a r e " i n - a c c o r d w i t h  to which they a r e p o l l u t i n g , a b s o l u t e  nature d i s o r d e r e d , and o f the e x t e n t  to which they p e r s o n i f y i n t h e i r  c r e a t i o n the d i s o r d e r o f c u l t u r e " (1983:115). concludes  representations of  Thus, K a p f e r e r  t h a t degree o f adherence to the Buddha's t e a c h i n g s ,  relative  p u r i t y , and e x p r e s s i o n o f the o r d e r i n g p r i n c i p l e s o r u n i t y o f c u l t u r e , as opposed  to the d i s o r d e r i n g p r o p e n s i t i e s o f n a t u r e , a r e the k e y  f a c t o r s r a n k i n g d e i t i e s or demons " r e l a t i v e  to each o t h e r and w i t h i n  t h e i r ( r e s p e c t i v e ) c a t e g o r i e s " (1983:115).  Although  the degree o f  adherence to the Buddha's teachings o f f e r s a r e s p e c t a b l e l o g i c o f r a n k i n g where degrees o f u n d e r s t a n d i n g  may be opposed to degrees o f  97 i g n o r a n c e , T i b e t a n cosmology acknowledges the i n d i v i d u a l power, w e a l t h , and n o t o r i e t y o f demons.  These f a c t o r s c o n s t i t u t e demonic  a s s e t s , and measure o u t the p r e s t i g e and r a n k i n g a demon enjoys v i s - a - v i s o t h e r demons. fashion,  I f a demon can a c q u i r e s t a t u s i n such a  there e x i s t s a h i e r a r c h y i n the demonic realm.  But t h i s  h i e r a r c h y i s n o t c o n s t r u c t e d a c c o r d i n g to B u d d h i s t t e n e t s . implication,  The  then, i s t h a t e x t e r n a l determinants o f c o s m o l o g i c a l  r a n k i n g may n o t n e c e s s a r i l y r e f l e c t the i n t e r n a l c r i t e r i a  applied  w i t h i n any c o s m o l o g i c a l n i c h e .  The H i e r a r c h y o f Demons  Demons a r e i n v a r i a b l y  thought o f as t h r e a t e n i n g and o f t e n  d e s c r i b e d by a n t h r o p o l o g i s t s as "the c o n t r a d i c t i o n o f an o r d e r " ( K a p f e r e r 1983, O r t n e r 1980, e t a l ) .  T i b e t a n demons a r e c e r t a i n  s p i r i t s who managed to elude the e f f o r t s of Padmasambhava to c o n v e r t any  r e b e l l i o u s beings  to Buddhism, and ghosts who have n o t been  e x o r c i s e d , and, thus, who have grown more p o w e r f u l as time p a s s e s . T i b e t a n demons, then, c o n s t i t u t e a c a t e g o r y c o m p r i s i n g b o t h a n c i e n t s p i r i t s and p o w e r f u l g h o s t s , and the d i s t i n c t i o n between these demons and ghosts i s permeable. T i b e t a n demons and ghosts do n o t f i t p r e c i s e l y  i n t o any o f the  p r e s c r i b e d c o s r a o l o g i c a l o r d e r s (the ghosts who worry humans a r e n o t yl-dwags), b u t tend i n s t e a d legitimate hierarchy.  to hover about the i n t e r s t i c e s o f the  But T i b e t a n s say t h a t p o w e r f u l demons and  p o w e r f u l ghosts have t h e i r own f o l l o w e r s , as do p o w e r f u l  inhabitants  of any p a r t i c u l a r c o s m o l o g i c a l n i c h e .  What appears t o emerge, then,  from T i b e t a n accounts i s t h a t demons compose and adhere h i e r a r c h i e s w i t h i n the demonic realms.  to t h e i r  own  In the p r e c e d i n g c h a p t e r , I  noted the s o c i a l s t r a t a o c c u p i e d by the l e s s e r l h a and the k l u where both groups are c o n s i d e r e d t o be s o c i a l c r e a t u r e s who d i s l i k e i s o l a t i o n , and arrange themselves p r i e s t s , commoners, and c r i m i n a l s .  enjoy company,  i n four castes: royalty,  Although I d i d not hear of demons  a l i g n i n g themselves a c c o r d i n g t o c a s t e s , t h e r e a r e r e p o r t e d l y h i e r a r c h i e s of e v i l  spirits.  For example, the h i e r a r c h y of ghosts may  be d e t e c t e d i n the  r e p o r t s some T i b e t a n s have made o f s e e i n g a f r i e n d who walking a l o n g a path.  has  The e n t i r e f i g u r e of the deceased  v i s i b l e but i t s appearance  died  person i s  i s very shabby - the ghosts c l o t h e s may  be  r e n t , h i s or her h a i r unkempt, and, perhaps, t h e r e are s o r e s or wounds on the "body".  T h i s s o r r y s t a t e i s c o n s i d e r e d proof t h a t the ghost  (or the deceased's ghosts who  rnam-shes) has been made the s e r v a n t of o t h e r  have more s e n i o r i t y - t h a t i s , have been ghosts f o r a  l o n g e r p e r i o d of time and have a c q u i r e d a c e r t a i n amount of power i n that capacity.  The  shabby ghosts a r e , thus, i n the s e r v i c e o f the  more powerful g h o s t s . A c c o r d i n g to T i b e t a n Buddhist e s c h a t o l o g y , one becomes a ghost if,  a t the p o i n t of death, one's rnam-shes ( t r a n s m i g r a t i n g  c o n s c i o u s n e s s ) , the e t e r n a l s o u l which w i l l go through a bar-do  period  and e v e n t u a l l y on t o r e b i r t h , remains a t t a c h e d t o persons or t h i n g s , to samsaric e x i s t e n c e .  A ghost i s , i n essence, a rnam-shes t h a t i s  a t t a c h e d t o i t s former l i f e and unable t o t r a v e l through bar-do i n  search of r e b i r t h . another and  T h i s r e b i r t h , which would f i x the s o u l i n t o  p o s s i b l y s u p e r i o r rung o f  the h i e r a r c h y  (depending, o f  c o u r s e , upon the s o u l ' s karmic p r e d i s p o s i t i o n or amassment of bsod-nams - m e r i t ) , i s denied too a t t a c h e d  T i b e t a n ghosts and human s o u l s .  intended The  demons r e l i s h , above a l l ,  Ghosts u s u a l l y adopt a r a t h e r p a s s i v e  of  the s i x  the b l a , Into  is likely  strategy  to be w a l k i n g a l o n e l y path a t  l e a v i n g h i s or her  eventually  v i c t i m ' s death, the ghost s e i z e s the rnam-shes. take a more a g g r e s s i v e  tack and  the a c t u a l death o f  o f t e n apply  their victim.  places  The  die.  will  Upon the  bdud (demons)  themselves d i r e c t l y  e a r l y morning r e s p e c t i v e l y , and  the c r o s s i n g o f  three  In such p l a c e s , a t such times, and c o n s i s t mostly o f b o a s t i n g captured  to  Whether the s o u l - s t e a l e r s  a t dawn o r dusk, which mark, i n o p p o s i t i o n  such as  their  night.  be g h o s t s or demons, they a r e wont to p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h e i r own  t h e i r evening and  for  to f r i g h t e n h i s secondary  body, which, i n t u r n ,  cause the v i c t i m to d e c l i n e i n h e a l t h and  gatherings  the  O f t e n they merely appear i n some g u i s e b e f o r e  v i c t i m , who  effecting  one  those humanly embodied whet  v i c t i m ' s consequent shock i s s u f f i c i e n t  soul,  the conquest o f  be r e b o r n i n t o any  of s e n t i e n t b e i n g s , o n l y  souls.  i n t o the s e r v i c e of  predecessors.  Though rnam-shes may  demonic a p p e t i t e . obtaining  A rnam-shes which remains  to i t s former l i f e a l s o r i s k s f a l l i n g  i t s more p o w e r f u l ghost  categories  the ghost.  social  to human custom,  meet i n  designated  roads or under b r i d g e s .  The  talk  amongst such company i s b e l i e v e d  about the r e s p e c t i v e number of rnam-shes  and m a l e v o l e n t a c t i o n s d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t humans.  to  100 The Demon as a "Bad F i t "  While and  the most p o w e r f u l e v i l s p i r i t s are i n t e n t upon c a p t u r i n g  e n s l a v i n g s o u l s , there a r e o t h e r s who  w i t h a c q u i r i n g human embodiment.  bdud-mo, ba-mo) a r e somewhat unique  birth. end  case of w i t c h e s , almost  Witches  (son-'adre,  i n t h i s spectrum  w i t c h ) , may  s o u l l e a v e s the body.  i t i s a d i f f e r e n t matter  invariably  female  comprise  as  they  "grounded" by a p r e s e n t "human  Under normal human c i r c u m s t a n c e s , a person's  i f the b l a or secondary  preoccupied  T h i s group i s e x e m p l i f i e d by  w i t c h e s , l e s s e r l h a , and w a l k i n g c o r p s e s .  r e p r e s e n t the o n l y e v i l s p i r i t  appear to be  life  life"  i s near i t s  However, i n the  entirely.  Witches a r e  (none of ray informants c o u l d r e c o l l e c t a male  o n e - f o u r t h o f the T i b e t a n female p o p u l a t i o n , and  may  a l s o be unaware of t h e i r p r o p e n s i t i e s . While a w i t c h s l e e p s , her  bla  o r secondary  s o u l l e a v e s her body and wanders about a t t e m p t i n g  take p o s s e s s i o n of someone and, person's  body.  not, however,  The  i n so doing,  take c o n t r o l of t h a t  c o n n e c t i o n o f the w i t c h ' s b l a to her own  body i s  severed.  One a c c o u n t o f w i t c h p o s s e s s i o n d e s c r i b e d the a r r i v a l  i n a small  Khams v i l l a g e o f a g r e a t l o r d and h i s b e a u t i f u l w i f e from Lhasa. known v i l l a g e w i t c h took a fancy to t h i s woman and the couple was suddenly  d i n i n g and  began to j o k e and  h e r e t o f o r e unknown to h e r . w i t c h had  to  A  one n i g h t , w h i l e  d r i n k i n g chang, the b e a u t i f u l w i f e s i n g i n Khams-pa d i a l e c t , a  speech  From t h i s very f a c t people knew t h a t the  taken p o s s e s s i o n o f the w i f e .  d e s i r e of the w i t c h to occupy a n o t h e r ' s  T h i s t a l e r e c o u n t s , then, body and  takes note of  the  the  101 f a c t t h a t the woman's speech b e t r a y e d her. u n a c c e p t a b l e o r a t o r y may  Another  instance of  be seen i n the d e t e c t i o n o f a f a l s e  ( p r e s e n t e d i n Chapter I I I ) , where u n f u l f i l l e d  oracle  predictions c a l l  into  q u e s t i o n the ' l e g i t i m a c y ' o f the o r a c l e . I f speech can i n d i c a t e the i n t r u s i o n o f e v i l i n T i b e t a n s o c i e t y , so may  body movement.  The  case i n p o i n t i s the T i b e t a n phenomenon o f  the 'walking c o r p s e ' ( c f . Wylie 1964) i s c r e a t e d by an e v i l s p i r i t who a go' o f the d i s c a r d e d body. believed  t h a t h i s touch w i l l  person, but he may  The w a l k i n g c o r p s e or r o - l a n g s  upon a death, hastens  to t r y to 'make  The r o - l a n g s i s h o r r i f y i n g because  i t is  induce a s i m i l a r c o n d i t i o n i n another  be d e t e c t e d through h i s s i n g u l a r body movements.  r o - l a n g s i s extremely s t i f f and unable  to bend h i s body a t a l l .  A  For  t h i s reason, doorways and windows i n Lhasa were supposedly b u i l t v e r y low so the r o - l a n g s , unable e n t e r i n g a home. monasteries  to s t o o p , would be prevented  Corpses were c u s t o m a r i l y bent and  tied i n  to p r e v e n t t h e i r p o s s i b l e f u t u r e as r o - l a n g s .  Each o f the above examples i l l u s t r a t e s a and  from  the disembodied  'bad f i t '  as w i t h the r o - l a n g s , o r unseemly  between a body  speech  resulting  from w i t c h p o s s e s s i o n o r the f a l s e p r e d i c t i o n s from  oracles.  The urge on the p a r t o f the o f f e n d i n g s p i r i t  dubious  to assume the  shape or speech of another h i n t s a t d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n w i t h i t s c u r r e n t position. argue  Now,  anyone f a m i l i a r w i t h T i b e t a n cosmology might  well  t h a t these e v i l s p i r i t s a r e ranked beneath humans and,  t h e r e f o r e , might y e a r n f o r the human advantage  s i n c e o n l y human b i r t h  a f f o r d s a p o s s i b l e e x i t ( e n l i g h t e n m e n t ) from samsara o r a chance f o r r e b i r t h i n the g o d l y realm, and women, who  occupy an i n f e r i o r  status  102 to men i n the human realm, may w e l l d e s i r e c o n s c i o u s l y o r unconsciously  to be someone e l s e .  t h a t attempts to i n h a b i t another  But the above examples a l s o  suggest  human's body a r e u l t i m a t e l y doomed to  f a i l u r e because the mis-match w i l l become r e a d i l y apparent  to o t h e r  humans. A t h i r d example o f a 'bad f i t '  concerns  an I n t r i c a t e  i n v o l v i n g , among o t h e r t h i n g s , a TIPA g h o s t . however, the ghost was c o n s i d e r e d I n a p p r o p r i a t e behaviour  In this  case  example,  to be a r e f l e c t i o n o f the  o r the 'bad f i t '  o f her former husband:  The TIPA Ghost  A famous romance i n Dharmsala, the l o v e a f f a i r o f two a d o l e s c e n t dancers  a t the T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e o f P e r f o r m i n g A r t s , soured  p u b l i c view a f t e r the young c o u p l e m a r r i e d . h i s w i f e to perform  a l l domestic  The young man  i n the expected  t a s k s , and l e f t h e r c o n s t a n t l y i n  o r d e r to gad about w i t h o t h e r young men, as i s the custom w i t h unmarried  men.  T i b e t a n s p e r c e i v e d the young man's treatment o f h i s  w i f e a s d i s r e s p e c t f u l , s i n c e he o f t e n stayed o u t a l l n i g h t , and never Informed her o f h i s whereabouts o r a c t i v i t i e s . The f i r s t s i g n observed  by h i s f e l l o w TIPA members as r e t r i b u t i o n  f o r h i s i n a t t e n t i o n to h i s w i f e was the young man's c o n t r a c t i o n of a klu . d i s e a s e .  He had s o r e s c o v e r i n g h i s e n t i r e body, had to shave h i s  head, and c o u l d n o t walk e a s i l y . w i f e was pregnant,  The young man became i l l  while h i s  and c o u l d n o t a s s i s t d u r i n g h e r l a b o u r (most o f the  o t h e r members o f the I n s t i t u t e were on tour i n Europe and N o r t h  103 America at t h i s time).  The baby died during the b i r t h , and the young  wife died two days l a t e r . The young man arranged f o r bar-do r i t u a l s to be performed, but, i n the opinion of h i s peers, h i s arrangements were f a r too meager. His friends l a t e r agreed that the young man,  though poor, should have  borrowed money i n order to pray properly f o r h i s wife's soul.  To make  matters much worse, the young man i n i t i a t e d an a f f a i r with another woman before the 49-day bar-do period had been completed.  Thus,  before h i s former wife's soul had taken r e - b i r t h , the young man had already forgotten her for another woman. The night after the funeral, the room formerly belonging to the young couple had been locked.  Their neighbor, another performer, and  his v i s i t i n g s i s t e r were sleeping i n an adjacent room.  They both  heard a scratching sound coming from the locked room, and the noise persisted thoughout the night.  The next morning, the s i s t e r related  the story to her mother, who discounted i t completely.  The mother  agreed, however, to spend the next night i n the adjacent room with her son.  Her son f o r t i f i e d himself with a l o t of rum, hoping i t would  make him f a l l sleep.  His t a c t i c , however, did not work.  His mother  heard the same noise coming from the locked room, and became t e r r i b l y frightened. The mother, who l i v e d i n TCV, sought the help of the major Dharmsala exorcist (sngags-pa), who, TCV.  at that time, also l i v e d i n  When the exorcist performed a dice divination, he discovered  that the young man's wife had become a ghost, and had returned to TIPA.  Her exorcism, then, was thought to be extremely important,  104 s i n c e a n u n e x o r c i s e d g h o s t o n l y becomes more p o w e r f u l . e x o r c i s t a r r i v e d a t TIPA, he ordered the doors and windows.  When the  the I n s t i t u t e members to open a l l  E v e r y t h i n g w i t h a l i d was uncovered.  room i n the TIPA d o r m i t o r y , o f f i c e , and t h e a t e r was searched presence locked  o f the g h o s t .  Finally,  Every f o r the  the e x o r c i s t l o c a t e d the g h o s t i n a  trunk In the c o u p l e ' s former room ( t h e d e t a i l s o f t h i s mode o f  exorcism a r e p r e s e n t e d  i n Chapter V I ) .  The box i n which the young  woman's g h o s t had been h i d i n g c o n t a i n e d  the s c h o o l u n i f o r m she had  worn b e f o r e she became a member o f TIPA. The d i s c o v e r y o f the s c h o o l uniform by the e x o r c i s t was y  thought  p a r t i c u l a r l y s i g n i f i c a n t by the TIPA members, s i n c e the young woman's romance w i t h h e r husband had blossomed d u r i n g t h e i r s c h o o l days b e f o r e they j o i n e d TIPA. thought  A t the p o i n t o f her death,  to have been too a t t a c h e d  w i t h h e r husband. untimely a f f a i r .  the young woman was  to h e r s c h o o l days, and h e r romance  The husband p r e c i p i t a t e d h e r ghosthood by h a v i n g an Though the husband married  the woman he had begun to  see so soon a f t e r h i s f i r s t w i f e ' s death, TIPA members agreed exorcism had chastened  hira.  He now prays f o r h i s f i r s t w i f e  t h a t the every  day. A f u r t h e r t w i s t to t h i s episode may be seen  i n the f a c t t h a t the  man's p r e s e n t w i f e i s p e r c e i v e d by some o f the TIPA members as a witch.  She has r e v e r s e d the r e l a t i o n s o b t a i n i n g i n h e r husband'is  f i r s t marriage, and  s i n c e she has been known to b e a t him, o r d e r him about,  enjoy h e r own romantic a f f a i r s .  c o n v i n c i n g e v i d e n c e , however,  What i s c o n s i d e r e d to be more  i s the f a c t t h a t one o f h e r former  l o v e r s has twice been d i s c o v e r e d s l e e p - w a l k i n g to the c o u p l e ' s  door.  105 When h i s f e l l o w performers  awakened him,  reason f o r b e i n g t h e r e , and concluded  he had no r e c o l l e c t i o n o f h i s  t h a t the woman, though she might  n o t be c o n s c i o u s o f the f a c t , had somehow drawn him to her.  Several  o f t h i s s l e e p - w a l k e r ' s male f r i e n d s a t the I n s t i t u t e t r i e d to encourage t h i s woman to v i s i t Sa-skya lama, who l i v e s  the Sa-skya K h r i - c h e n ,  the h i g h e s t  i n the s t a t e o f U t t a r Pradesh.  T h i s lama was  suggested  to her, s i n c e he i s known to have the power to c o n t r o l  witches.  She d i s a g r e e d w i t h  not v i s i t  the lama.  t h e i r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , however, and d i d  The TIPA members do r e f e r to the young husband'!s bad karma ( l a s ) in their i n i t i a l  r a t i o n a l i z a t i o n o f the m i s f o r t u n e s o f these two  c o u p l e s , but Dharmsala T i b e t a n s tend to p r e f e r more e x p l i c i t rationalizations  than those a f f o r d e d by a n answer o f "karma" p e r s e .  I n c o n s i d e r i n g the young husband, s e v e r a l TIPA performers young husband's i n a t t e n t i o n to h i s w i f e to be r e f l e c t e d attack.  S i n c e a k l u d i s e a s e i s thought  i n a k l u disease.  T i b e t a n s u s u a l l y c o n s i d e r ghosts attachments,  A f o u r t h example p r e s e n t s 'mind'.  Poor s o c i a l  Furthermore,  relations,  while  to be the p r o d u c t o f i n a p p r o p r i a t e  the young w i f e ' s g h o s t  as a r e f l e c t i o n o f h e r husband's  in his klu  to d i s f i g u r e one's appearance,  i t e n t e r s i n t o one's i n t e r a c t i o n s w i t h o t h e r s . then, c o u l d be r e f l e c t e d  viewed the  i s a t once such a p r o d u c t as w e l l  infidelity.  the case o f a 'bad f i t '  w i t h r e s p e c t to  T h i s anomaly i s r e p r e s e n t e d by a p a r t i c u l a r type o f T i b e t a n  g h o s t known as a r g y a l - p o which l i t e r a l l y means ' k i n g * .  Lichter  (1981) i n h i s ethnography o f the Tsumbas, a T i b e t a n o i d ( G o l d s t e i n  106 1975:69) people o f northwestern Nepal, t r e a t s the r g y a l - p o phenomenon at  some l e n g t h .  or  i r a s c i b l e lamas"  who to  Among the Tsumbas, r g y a l - p o a r e the ghosts o f "greedy (Lichter  1981:285).  Furthermore, lamas or monks  become ghosts b e t r a y the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the monastic community be exemplars of detachment  s i n c e ghosthood  i s c o n d i t i o n a l upon  c l i n g i n g t o t h i n g s , c o n d i t i o n s , or persons i n l i f e . Dharmsala  accounts of r g y a l - p o s concur w i t h those o f Tsumbas i n  d e p i c t i n g t h e i r i n t o l e r a n c e and the f a c t t h a t t h e i r former human ' s e l v e s ' had not a t t a i n e d enlightenment ( e n l i g h t e n e d beings can to  r e i n c a r n a t e or l e a v e samsara  Dharmsala  choose  a l t o g e t h e r , but never become g h o s t s ) .  s t o r i e s a l s o s t r e s s the tendency of many r g y a l - p o s t o  become p r o t e c t o r s of a household, and p r o t e c t o r s i n p a r t i c u l a r o f the household's r e s o u r c e s . accompanied  One  the household h e r d s .  from a stream, Shera would falling  r g y a l - p o known as Shera - "the b l i n d  i n the water  one"  Whenever the animals went t o d r i n k  p u l l t h e i r t a i l s t o prevent them from  (a v i a b l e p r o s p e c t i n many Himalayan  river  valleys). In  t h i s way,  the r g y a l - p o was  household and h i s i r a s c i b i l i t y in this role.  thought t o take c a r e o f the  d e r i v e s from the a n x i e t i e s he  fosters  I f , f o r example, the f a t h e r of a household h o s t s many  p a r t i e s and g i v e s away expensive p r e s e n t s d u r i n g the course o f these parties,  the r g y a l - p o who  'looks a f t e r ' the household becomes  i n f u r i a t e d a t the waste o f money and w i l l harm the f a t h e r i n retribution.  Such d e s c r i p t i o n s of the r g y a l - p o would agree i n p a r t  w i t h O r t n e r ' s c o n t e n t i o n (1978:153) t h a t Sherpa monastic a s c e t i c i s m c o n t r a d i c t s the e s s e n t i a l s o c i a l l u b r i c a n t of h o s p i t a l i t y  and  107 r e a f f i r m s L i c h t e r ' s p o i n t about the m a t e r i a l attachments of rgyal-pos. Dharmsala d e s c r i p t i o n s , however, p o i n t up a more i n t r i g u i n g aspect of rgyal-pos t h a t those  - namely, t h a t they occupy d i f f e r e n t ranks,  i n the h i g h e s t echelons  must be appeased through  t h a t r g y a l - p o s were r e l i g i o u s persons who and  r e b e l l e d a g a i n s t r e l i g i o n , and  They have a " v e r y powerful education  way  ritual;  l a t e r became d i s o r i e n t e d  t h a t they a r e extremely dangerous.  o f harming" as a r e s u l t o f the  they r e c e i v e d i n t h e i r former l i v e s .  Rgyal-pos,  have accumulated a l a r g e amount o f r e l i g i o u s knowledge and  h i e r a r c h y , o r , a t l e a s t , by a d h e r i n g  o u t s i d e the l i m i t s o f s a n c t i o n e d mindfulness',  then, e s t a b l i s h e s them as a  o r d e r , but p l a c e s  them a t the  demons and g h o s t s ,  then, who  symbolize  the power  structure. 'bad  fit'  to a h i e r a r c h y  T h e i r '[wrong i n the  religious Tibetan  commonly assume i n a p p r o p r i a t e s t a t u s e s , and  ambition"  may  further c a l l into question  i n Tibetan society.  Problem o f Dbang  T u c c i d e f i n e s dbang tang as a " p s y c h i c a l and and  by  top o f an a l t e r n a t e h i e r a r c h y .  " m i s - d i r e c t e d " ambition,  the d e f i n i t i o n o f " a c c e p t a b l e  The  Buddhist  high  thus,  t h a t such knowledge e n t a i l s , but have gone a g a i n s t r e l i g i o n c o n s t r u c t i n g a new  and  material strength  s e c u r i t y r e s t i n g upon the knowledge o f p a s t karma" (1980:176).  Dbang tang o r  l a s dbang (karmic  one's p r e v i o u s  l i v e s due  power.  A l t h o u g h i t may  dbang), I was  t o l d , emerges from  to the e f f e c t of karma, and  i s a type  of  r e s u l t i n p a r t from good deeds performed i n  p r e v i o u s l i v e s , i t i s not synonymous r e l a t i v e s t o c k of bsod-nams, determinant  i n directing  also  w i t h bsod-nams or m e r i t .  One's  the r e s u l t of good deeds, i s a key  the rnam-shes ( t r a n s m i g r a t i n g c o n s c i o u s n e s s )  to the next r e b i r t h .  I f one's s t o c k o f bsod-nams i s h i g h , a  favourable b i r t h w i l l  o b t a i n , i f i t i s low, the o p p o s i t e r e s u l t s .  dbang tang i s a d i f f e r e n t  sort  of p o t e n t i a l .  But  I f , f o r example, one i s  d e s t i n e d to be r e b o r n as a dog, but one has accrued a s i g n i f i c a n t amount of dbang, then one w i l l  indeed be a dog, but one w i l l be the  most powerful of dogs, l i v e i n the best of households, and enjoy f a v o u r a b l e treatment from one's masters. An important d i s t i n c t i o n between dbang tang and bsod-nams i s t h a t the l a t t e r i s i n e x t r i c a b l y  linked  a c q u i r e d i n one's p r e s e n t l i f e life,  and a c t i o n s d i r e c t e d  one's next l i f e .  to karmic c a u s a l i t y .  w i l l have no b e a r i n g on one's p r e s e n t  t o i t s i n c r e a s e w i l l have e f f e c t o n l y i n  Dbang tang, however, may  be i n c r e a s e d i n the here  and now and bear d i r e c t l y upon one!s p r e s e n t l i f e power one may a c q u i r e w i t h i n the parameters dbang and connotes as I w i l l argue, If  The  of a l i f e t i m e i s known as and,  power i n the realms o f e v i l . even t r a n s c e n d karmic  For example, a l t h o u g h a s t r o l o g y i s b e l i e v e d t o p r e d i c t  k a r m i c a l l y determined  l i m i t s t o one's l i f e s p a n ,  g r e a t amount of dbang w i l l  a person who  the  has a  be a b l e t o l i v e beyond t h i s " i n b o r n l i m i t "  u n t i l t h i s s t o c k of dbang i s exhausted. one may  situation.  power i n the animal kingdom, i n human s o c i e t y ,  one has enough dbang, one may  dictates.  The bsod-nams  Dbang a l s o  denotes the power  o b t a i n through m e d i t a t i o n a l d e i t i e s , r e l i g i o u s i n i t i a t i o n s  g i v e n by lamas, or even from the mere touch of a lama (phyag-dbang or  109 'hand-blessing').  E p s t e i n r e f e r s to such a t r a n s f e r o f dbang as  "metonymical i n t h a t i t r e v e a l s s a c r e d unspecified existence,  form f l o w i n g  power as a whole  and  from the most h i g h l y d i s v a l u e d  level  of  the body, from which a c t i o n o r i g i n a t e s " (1978:193).  Epstein i l l u s t r a t e s  t h i s flow  by c i t i n g  the  p i l l s made o f lamas' b o d i l y e f f l u v i a " , and  ingestion of the T i b e t a n  bowing to touch t h e i r lama's f e e t "with the most profound p a r t of  top o f  the body)" (1978:193).  "medicine  p r a c t i c e of  t h e i r heads  (the  But o f p a r t i c u l a r  s i g n i f i c a n c e , as E p s t e i n i n d i c a t e s , i s t h a t once a lama o b t a i n s dbang, "nothing  can d i v e s t him  through which he can  transmit  of  this generalized  his  form of power  b l e s s i n g s " whatever h i s c h a r a c t e r  or  degree of l e a r n i n g (1978:232). Religious e s s e n t i a l and  i n i t i a t i o n s , according graded s e r i e s of steps  to n a t i v e e x e g e s i s ,  towards enlightenment.  n o t a t t a i n e n l i g h t e n m e n t by one's s e l f a l o n e , a p p l i c a t i o n to B o d h i s a t t v a s , his e x c e l l e n t d i s c u s s i o n of  are  the e n l i g h t e n e d  but  rather  meditational  an One  does  through deities.  the c u l t o f T a r a (Sgrol-ma) among  Bk'a-rgyud-pa s e c t o f T i b e t a n Buddhism, Beyer (1973) p r e s e n t s  In  the the  e t i q u e t t e of approach an adept must f o l l o w i n h i s q u e s t f o r s a l v a t i o n . The  most b a s i c i n i t i a t i o n ,  f o r example, p r o v i d e s  through which the a p p l i c a n t requests r i t u a l s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h T a r a and r i t u a l s e r v i c e , her e v o c a t i o n can  and  permission  simply  the  frame  to p r a c t i c e  i s an o b l i g a t o r y " p r e c u r s o r employment" (1973:375).  i n i t i a t e a d i s c i p l e since i n i t i a t i o n requires  m a g i c a l power from the lama to d i s c i p l e i n o r d e r were, o r e f f e c t the d i s c i p l e ' s c o m p l e t i o n o f  the  to  the  her  Only a lama  t r a n s f e r of  to " c a t a l y z e " , as i t  the r i t u a l s t e p .  This  no magical power and  the  initiation itself  When a d i s c i p l e completes an  i s r e f e r r e d to as  initiation,  w i t h a c e r t a i n amount of dbang which w i l l i d e a l l y extend the  he or she  dbang.  becomes empowered  p r o l o n g h i s or her  enhance h i s or her  chances of  enlightenment.  As I mentioned above, the s u c c e s s f u l c o m p l e t i o n of a  and  prepares one  so on.  lama has  himself  c a n d i d a t e s f o r any  received  but  preliminary  to be a c a n d i d a t e f o r a secondary  A lama cannot bestow an  not  initiation,  i n i t i a t i o n upon a d i s c i p l e i f the  t h a t s p e c i f i c i n i t i a t i o n , and  the most b a s i c i n i t i a t i o n s are  initiatory  purportedly  screened c a r e f u l l y f o r t h e i r s u i t a b i l i t y , s i n c e the f u r t h e r one the  sequence of i n i t i a t i o n s , The  when the a p p l i c a n t  blessed  the more dbang one  when the  r e c e i v e s a srung-mdud " b l e s s i n g t h r e a d " neck from the o f f i c i a t i n g lama.  lama t i e s a s a c r e d  spoken mantra onto the k n o t ( s ) ,  srung-mdud may  the  external  These t h r e a d s  blows a protects  intrusion.  While o b t a i n i n g asked one  or r o l l e d and  Moreover, srung-mdud may folded  a great  take into blue,  worn i n amulet cases ( g ' a u ) .  some of the p a r t i c u l a r s on  informant why  an  thus, a c t as an e f f e c t i v e  squares to be wrapped i n threads of the f i v e c o l o r s ( r e d , white, yellow),  are  contravene the e f f e c t of  form of mantras w r i t t e n or p r i n t e d on r i c e paper and  green, and  tied  Some T i b e t a n s venture t h a t a  be so powerful i t c o u l d  any  to be  knot or s e r i e s of knots and  i n n o c u l a t i o n a d m i n i s t e r e d to the wearer and, barrier against  symbolically  which imbues i t w i t h dbang and  the wearer from e v i l i n f l u e n c e s .  ascends  accumulates.  s u c c e s s f u l completion of an i n i t i a t i o n i s marked  around h i s or her  and  p o s s i b i l i t y of a c q u i r i n g more r e l i g i o u s knowledge  w i t h i n a l i f e t i m e and  initiation  life  these srung-mdud, I  sngags-pa might wear one  and  his reply  suggested  t h a t i t would p r o t e c t the sngags-pa from e v i l  i n f l u e n c e s or  f e e l i n g s of g u i l t - b u t j u s t as my  informant was  t h i s concept, another monk e n t e r e d  the sgom-pa where I was  the i n t e r v i e w .  about to expand upon  In l i g h t of t h i s a d d i t i o n to h i s audience,  informant requested  t h a t I ask q u e s t i o n s p e r t a i n i n g s o l e l y  ' c u l t u r e ' and not to s p e c i f i c r e l i g i o u s m a t t e r s .  The  conducting my to T i b e t a n  rationale for  h i s a n x i e t y s p r i n g s from a maxim commonly pronounced by T i b e t a n s i n exile  to f o r e i g n e r s - t h a t i t i s a s i n to make any mistakes  e x p l a i n i n g dharma.  The  presence  the c o n t e x t f o r t h i s p o s s i b i l i t y .  of the o t h e r monk a l l e g e d l y c r e a t e d S i n c e , however, my  b e g i n n i n g to expand upon an ambivalence as  in  informant  was  t h a t accompanies sngags-pas  the o t h e r monk e n t e r e d , I i n t e r p r e t e d h i s h e r e t o f o r e underaonstrated  r e l u c t a n c e to answer any  q u e s t i o n s as a r e s u l t of a  tacit  u n d e r s t a n d i n g among sngags-pas and o t h e r r e l i g i o u s p r a c t i t i o n e r s to communicate c e r t a i n m a t t e r s e l a b o r a t e upon any  to Westerners and,  not  e s p e c i a l l y , not to  s u b j e c t s which might p o i n t up c e r t a i n  religious  paradoxes. Dbang, however, conveys f a r more than p r o t e c t i o n f o r those possess  i t . A p a r t from  i t s c a p a c i t y to extend  produces an e f f e c t known as dngos-grub. i n two ways. wealth,  The  first  the l i f e s p a n ,  who  dbang  This e f f e c t i s designated  i s mchog dngos-grub which r e f e r s  to the  fame, and power one might d e s i r e i n t h i s w o r l d o r t h i s  life.  A cave m e d i t a t o r e x p l a i n e d the concept as f o l l o w s :  A t a s o c i a l g a t h e r i n g o r p a r t y , many people w i l l be t a l k i n g but one person w i l l become the c e n t e r of a t t e n t i o n . Everyone would f i n d t h i s person's speech to be e l e g a n t and, as i f he e x e r t e d some i n v i s i b l e i n f l u e n c e , he would be v e r y  112 p e r s u a s i v e . The i n v i s i b l e i n f l u e n c e i s the r e s u l t o f t h i s person's accumulated dbang. Others may t a l k and t a l k but f a i l t o c o n v i n c e anyone, and t h i s i s a consequence o f t h e i r l a c k o f dbang.  Mchog dngos-grub i m p l i e s m a t e r i a l s u c c e s s as w e l l a s an a b i l i t y to i n f l u e n c e o t h e r s , that i s t o say, t o c r e a t e a ' f o l l o w i n g * .  The  second type i s thun mong ma y i n dngos-grub and i s c o n s i d e r e d t o be t h e s u p e r i o r o f t h e two as t h i s second type w i l l enhance one's f u t u r e l i v e s , n o t j u s t one's p r e s e n t l i f e .  Thun mong ma y i n dngos-grub  e n a b l e s one n o t o n l y t o impress people i n t h i s l i f e  but a l s o  conveys  the power t o h e l p those i n h e l l , o r lower beings i n g e n e r a l , t o a t t a i n a b e t t e r r e b i r t h by changing t h e i r mental a t t i t u d e o r t h e i r intentionality. in  The importance  o f ' r i g h t thought' i s a c o n s t a n t theme  Buddhism, and even s u r f a c e d on t h e o c c a s i o n o f t h e 1980 a n n i v e r s a r y  of t h e March 10th u p r i s i n g by T i b e t a n s i n Lhasa a g a i n s t t h e C h i n e s e , when H.H. t h e D a l a i Lama, i n h i s u n o f f i c a l extemporaneous speech t o the T i b e t a n p u b l i c , c a u t i o n e d monks not t o change t h e i r c l o t h e s  (adopt  a monk's h a b i t ) u n l e s s they had changed t h e i r minds. I n f l u e n t i a l p e o p l e , then, a r e thought t o have been c o l l e c t i n g dbang i n p r e v i o u s l i v e s as w e l l as i n t h e i r p r e s e n t l i v e s .  The f r u i t s  o f such a c c u m u l a t i o n prove e x c e e d i n g l y u s e f u l on a m a t e r i a l plane and may, w i t h c o r r e c t a p p l i c a t i o n , prove u s e f u l on a s p i r i t u a l p l a n e . Dbang i s a l s o a power which one c o l l e c t s i n a d e l i b e r a t e manner, but not n e c e s s a r i l y i n an e t h i c a l manner.  One sngags-pa,  f o r example,  i n s i s t e d t h a t even a bad man who sought i n i t i a t i o n s c o u l d garner some dbang.  E v i l deeds o r a l e s s than d e s i r a b l e m o t i v a t i o n would not  113 p r e v e n t i n t e r e s t e d p a r t i e s from s e e k i n g i n i t i a t i o n s and o b t a i n i n g i t . A wealthy initiation,  Dharmsala f a m i l y e v i n c e d  this  ' u n e t h i c a l ' approach to  i n the l o c a l view, by the c i r c u m s t a n c e s  i n which they  left  the son's new b r i d e w h i l e the f a m i l y trooped o f f to the temple to r e c e i v e teachings and i n i t i a t i o n g i v e n by the D a l a i Lama a f t e r the New Year.  The young b r i d e had, i n obedience  impoverished  parents, r e l u c t a n t l y  the f a m i l y i n q u e s t i o n .  left  to h e r a r i s t o c r a t i c but  s c h o o l and m a r r i e d  the son o f  Her e x c e l l e n t command o f E n g l i s h was u s e f u l  in  s e r v i n g the f a m i l y e n t e r p r i s e , b u t her unhappiness was w e l l known  to  them and to s e v e r a l Western v i s i t o r s  In Dharmsala.  the temple t e a c h i n g s , the g i r l had been l e f t behind b u s i n e s s and to a w a i t b u i l d i n g expansion.  On the day o f  to s u p e r v i s e the  the a r r i v a l o f c o n c r e t e f o r the f a m i l y ' s The c o n c r e t e was d e l i v e r e d as a n t i c i p a t e d , b u t  the young woman was t h r u s t i n t o a n embarassing c o n t r a c t o r s demanded payment f o r the l o a d .  p o s i t i o n when the  The g i r l ' s  in-laws had  taken c a r e to l e a v e h e r w i t h no money l e s t she 'run away', and the girl,  i n t e a r s , appealed  to a Westerner f o r a l o a n (which was  r e p a i d when the f a m i l y r e t u r n e d ) . commentary and sympathy from of  promptly  T h i s episode drew c o n s i d e r a b l e  the community, who found a g r e a t degree  h y p o c r i s y i n the f a m i l y ' s p u r s u i t o f r e l i g i o n but, a t the same  time, a s s e r t e d t h a t the f a m i l y ' s presence a t the t e a c h i n g s would, n o n e t h e l e s s , augment t h e i r s t o c k o f dbang. In for  h i s study o f a Sherpa monastery, P a u l , u s i n g the Sherpa ong  dbang, notes  t h a t an i n d i v i d u a l ' s s p i r i t u a l p r o g r e s s  i n h i s c o m p l e t i o n o f f o u r stages o f i n i t i a t i o n s o r ong. stage enables  i s measured The f i r s t  the s t u d e n t to conform h i s a c t i o n s and body to the  114 t e a c h i n g s of Buddha; the second his  thought  to the l e v e l o f a 'Buddha raind't and  enlightenment almost  a d j u s t s h i s speech;  the t h i r d  raises  i n the f o u r t h s t a g e ,  or becoming the Buddha i s a c h i e v e d (1970:475).  Now,  i n l i n e w i t h Bateson's (1972) s t a g e s o f l e a r n i n g , something can  go wrong b e f o r e the s u c c e s s f u l c o m p l e t i o n o f the n e x t s t a g e , o r , f o r some reason - e.g. u n t i m e l y death - the c a n d i d a t e does n o t complete the s t a g e s .  Few  become e n l i g h t e n e d i n a l i f e t i m e and,  f o r most,  thousands upon thousands o f l i v e s must be run through b e f o r e the s o u l achieves t h i s ultimate goal.  The worst p o s s i b i l i t y ,  from  the  r e l i g i o u s p e r s p e c t i v e , i s t h a t the c a n d i d a t e ' s mind can t u r n a g a i n s t r e l i g i o n a f t e r the c a n d i d a t e has r e l i g i o u s knowledge.  Those who  r e c e i v e d c o n s i d e r a b l e dbang have accumulated  and  the g r e a t e s t amount  o f dbang a r e i n v a r i a b l y monks o r lamas; hence, i f t h e i r minds ' t u r n ' , they a r e d e s t i n e d to become g h o s t s , ghosts w i t h a g r e a t d e a l o f power but w i t h o u t  the p r e s c r i b e d r e l i g i o u s a t t i t u d e to d i r e c t i t s use.  Dbang may  a l s o be o b t a i n e d i n more mundane ways than  i n i t i a t i o n s , as many T i b e t a n s a r e c o n v i n c e d  t h a t the mere touch  o r s i g h t o f a g r e a t lama w i l l bestow dbang. dbang i s n o t f o r our purposes a p p l i c a t i o n , and  through  But  from  the a c q u i s i t i o n o f  so important as i s i t s c o r r e c t  the c o n t r a s t between h i g h Dge-lugs-pa lamas and  sngags-pas i s , i n t h i s r e s p e c t , most r e v e a l i n g .  the  Sngags i s the  p r a c t i c e of T a n t r a ( t h e u t t e r a n c e of a magic mantra) and a sngags-pa is a Tantric practitioner.  Sngags-pas are o f t e n o f the Rnying-ma-pa  o r Bk'a-rgyud-pa s e c t s and when q u e s t i o n e d on what d i s t i n g u i s h e s these sngags-pas from o t h e r lamas, T i b e t a n s respond  t h a t sngags-pas  f u n c t i o n as weathermakers, e x o r c i s t s , and p o t e n t i a l l y as s o r c e r e r s .  115 I n Dharmsala, the m a j o r i t y s e c t i s Dge-lugs-pa, o f which the D a l a i Lama i s the head, but the Rnying-ma-pas enjoy a s i g n i f i c a n t , a l b e i t subsidiary, position.  The Rnying-ma-pa sngags-pas i n  Dharmsala a r e o f p a r t i c u l a r importance to the community a t l a r g e and to the T i b e t a n government because they agree to undertake and have g r e a t success w i t h q u e s t i o n a b l e and dangerous t a s k s . i n c l u d e s t o p p i n g r a i n o r h a i l and e x p e l l i n g ghosts Weathermaklng i s a q u e s t i o n a b l e , it  tampers w i t h  precipitation.  Such  tasks  and demons.  i n t h a t i t i s s i n f u l a c t i v i t y because  the r i g h t f u l p r e r o g a t i v e s o f the k l u , who r e g u l a t e Stopping  the r a i n ,  f o r example, i s no simple  matter,  as one sngags-pa e x p l a i n e d , but i n v o l v e s a g r e a t d e a l o f p r e p a r a t i o n . It  i s much e a s i e r to p r e v e n t  r a i n on some s p e c i f i c f u t u r e date  is  to stop r a i n t h a t i s a l r e a d y  falling.  Furthermore, s t o p p i n g the  r a i n r e q u i r e s t h a t the sngags-pa d i r e c t l y c h a l l e n g e doing, he m a n i f e s t s  than i t  the k l u .  I n so  h i s dbang a g a i n s t t h e i r power, and thereby  changes  the n a t u r a l o r d e r . The k l u , who p r e f e r to d o l e o u t the weather a t t h e i r own whim, r e t a l i a t e a g a i n s t t h i s m a n i p u l a t i o n where they can. Although  k l u a r e unable to b e s t the weatherraaker, they a r e s a i d to  take revenge upon h i s w i f e , who o f t e n e x p e r i e n c e s k l u induced Despite career. important  s o r e s on her body (a  disease). the s i n f u l a s p e c t o f weathermaklng, i t i s an e s s e n t i a l  Weathermaklng i s o r d e r e d official  functions.  by the T i b e t a n government f o r  The weather must always be "made", f o r  example, on each March 10th a n n i v e r s a r y o f the 1959 Lhasa u p r i s i n g , f o r T i b e t a n New Year ( e s p e c i a l l y  f o r the day the D a l a i Lama bestows  p u b l i c b l e s s i n g s ) , f o r s p e c i a l pujas o r t e a c h i n g s , and by the T i b e t a n  I n s t i t u t e o f Performing A r t s when an opera witness and  I  was  to a number o f the above o c c a s i o n s when the weather p r i o r to  f o l l o w i n g the s p e c i f i e d event was  proved  i s to be p r e s e n t e d .  sunny and  t e r r i b l e (hailstorms),  p l e a s a n t f o r the d e s i r e d p e r i o d .  Tibetans w i l l ,  however, remark on subsequent n a s t y weather as  i n d i c a t i v e o f the k l u ' s rage, s i n c e the k l u may temporarily  but  to the w i l l o f the sngags-pa.  be bent  but  For a K a l a c a k r a  I n i t i a t i o n h e l d i n Ladakh, the D a l a i Lama r e p o r t e d l y requested h i s c h i e f weathermaker to p r o v i d e clouds i n i t i a t e s from  the sun.  The  to s h e l t e r the 60,000 expected  weathermaker journeyed  to Ladakh w e l l i n  advance of the i n i t i a t i o n i n o r d e r to make p r e p a r a t i o n s , the d e s i r e d c l o u d s formed f o r the i n i t i a t i o n (a r a r e s i g h t i n Ladakh), u n f o r t u n a t e and  unexpected  D a l a i Lama o r d e r e d But sky.  t h i s was  product, snow, f e l l  Informant  The  so he d i d .  only a f t e r a great outburst f e l l  L a t e r , the weathermaker c o n f i d e d to one  their  upon the people.  the weathermaker to remove them, and  accomplished  but  from  the  t h a t those  who  o blamed him  f o r the snow should ask  the D a l a i Lama about i t .  "Since  t h e r e a r e never c l o u d s In Ladakh d u r i n g the monsoon (which a f f e c t s r e s t o f I n d i a ) , I t might be expected The its  t h a t c l o u d s would p r o v i d e snow."  n a t i v e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f weathermaking i n i t i a l l y  s i n f u l a s p e c t , but almost  the  immediately  namely, t h a t the sngags-pa, i n committing  emphasizes  adds a compensatory  coda:  the s i n , Is a c t u a l l y  s a c r i f i c i n g h i m s e l f ( i n c u r r i n g bad karma) f o r the b e n e f i t o f o t h e r s . On c e r t a i n o c c a s i o n s such as h o l y days, c o n t r o l l e d , and  the weather must be  the f a c t o f h i s s a c r i f i c e  a c t u a l l y r e v e r s e s any  sins  f o r the b e n e f i t o f o t h e r s  the sngags-pa may  acquire.  But w h i l e l a y  117 T i b e t a n s w i l l c i t e a sngags-pa's i n t e r f e r e n c e w i t h n a t u r a l o r d e r as the cause of the s i n In t h i s case, h i g h Dge-lugs-pa lamas  criticize  and d e r i d e the weathermakers f o r the f a c t t h a t they have made a p u b l i c d i s p l a y o f t h e i r power, and a s p e c t a c u l a r one a t t h a t . account  One  r e c a l l s an o c c a s i o n when an o f f i c i a l weathermaker  supposedly  unable  Dharmsala was  to c o n t r o l the weather b e f o r e a c r i t i c a l event,  and,  f i n a l l y , a f t e r much r e l u c t a n c e , a v e r y h i g h Dge-lugs-pa i n c a r n a t e agreed  to do i t j u s t once "to show p e o p l e . "  met  w i t h resounding  the  feat.  The  Dangers o f Dbang  The  s u c c e s s , b u t he has  His e f f o r t s  r e f u s e d ever s i n c e to r e p e a t  dbang o f g r e a t t a n t r i c p r a c t i t i o n e r s i s a t t a i n e d  l e a r n i n g the mantras r e l a t e d  purportedly  to a p a r t i c u l a r d e i t y ,  through  undertaking  m e d i t a t i o n a l r e t r e a t s f o r p e r i o d s o f three y e a r s , three months, and three days, and  spending  108 n i g h t s p e r f o r m i n g  up one's body to c a n n i b a l s p i r i t s ) s p r i n g ( t h e home of k l u ) . through  r i t e s of gcod  i n a cemetery and  108  (offering  nights at a  Such power i s n o t n e c e s s a r i l y t r a n s m i t t e d  r e i n c a r n a t i o n , b u t must be s y s t e m a t i c a l l y gained.  i n t e n s i v e t r a i n i n g and m e d i t a t i o n i s c o n s i d e r e d  The  to be e s s e n t i a l s i n c e  the p r a c t i c e o f T a n t r a always imposes extreme danger to the  performer.  A sngags-pa, i n the view o f T i b e t a n s , i s most s p e c t a c u l a r i n h i s r o l e s as weathermaker and  exorcist.  E x o r c i s m does n o t d i s t u r b the l e g i t i m a t e cosmic o r d e r , but r a t h e r c h a l l e n g e s and  subdues, i n one way  o r another,  ghosts and  demonic  118 elements.  However, o n l y a sngags-pa w i t h g r e a t power and  c o n c e n t r a t i o n can succeed a t exorcism. and  I f h i s dbang i s i n s u f f i c i e n t ,  h i s c o n c e n t r a t i o n w a i v e r s d u r i n g the r i t u a l ,  the g h o s t s or demons  w i l l n o t submit, r a t h e r , they w i l l grow more powerful defeated calling  the e x o r c i s t and,  thereby,  intense  from  having  pose a f a r more s e r i o u s  threat  f o r the e f f o r t s of an even g r e a t e r t a n t r i c p r a c t i t i o n e r .  T i b e t a n cave m e d i t a t o r  As  a  noted:  I t so happens t h a t those e v i l beings have a l l the d e f e c t s o f human b e i n g s ; i n f a c t , they a r e even worse than we a r e . They have a l l the weaknesses because they tend to l o o k down upon those monks who read s c r i p t u r e s b u t who a r e n o t l e a r n e d , who a r e not p r a c t i c i n g B u d d h i s t s .  If  the e x o r c i s t o r the e x o r c i s t i n a l l i a n c e w i t h h i s t u t e l a r y  d e i t y p o s s e s s e s s u f f i c i e n t dbang, then the e v i l Is c o n t r o l l e d by v i r t u e of  the e x o r c i s t ' s s u p e r i o r power.  With t h i s l o g i c comes a  r a t i o n a l e which s u b s t a n t i a t e s the r e l u c t a n c e o f t e n p r o f e s s e d  by  T i b e t a n sngags-pas to d i r e c t w r a t h f u l measures a g a i n s t ghosts demons - i . e . , fail  t h a t i f the e x o r c i s t ' s dbang i s i n s u f f i c i e n t , he  i n h i s c o n t e s t with  demon's power and i n the f u t u r e .  will  enhance  the  f u r t h e r the demon's chances o f b e s t i n g an e x o r c i s t  I n a d d i t i o n , f a i l u r e on the p a r t of the e x o r c i s t n o t  only endangers him the  the demon, a f a i l u r e which w i l l  and  but a l s o promotes the demon's o r ghost's s t a t u s i n  'alternate hierarchy'. This p o s s i b i l i t y  i s i l l u s t r a t e d by  the exorcism  g h o s t i n the T i b e t a n C h i l d r e n ' s V i l l a g e or "TCV". o f the most r i c h l y endowed T i b e t a n i n s t i t u t i o n s  of a contractor's  TCV,  which i s  i n exile, i s also  one the  119 s i t e o f ongoing c o n s t r u c t i o n o f classrooms, d o r m i t o r i e s , and d i n i n g h a l l s designed students likely  to serve  the orphan i n f a n t s , elementary and h i g h s c h o o l  who r e s i d e t h e r e .  Therefore,  a c o n t r a c t o r working f o r TCV i s  to be a s u c c e s s f u l businessman.  vocation,  B u t , by v i r t u e o f h i s  he i s bound to d i s t u r b the e a r t h and, t h e r e f o r e , the k l u and  sa-bdag t h a t c l a i m l e g i t i m a t e r e s i d e n c e  there.  f o r TCV then must take s p e c i a l p r e c a u t i o n s  to appease those who a r e  d i s p l a c e d and d i s p l e a s e d by the c o n s t r u c t i o n . d i s r e g a r d f o r such p r e c a u t i o n s  The  Contractor's  One  One TCV c o n t r a c t o r ' s  l e d to the exorcism o f h i s g h o s t :  Exorcism  evening, a TCV c o n t r a c t o r was r i d i n g h i s m o t o r c y c l e a l o n g the  road c o n n e c t i n g Gorkha R i f l e s be  A c o n t r a c t o r working  TCV w i t h McCleod G a n j .  A f o u n t a i n donated by the  i s a major landmark a l o n g  t h i s road and acknowledged to  the d w e l l i n g o f many k l u (who a r e n a t u r a l l y a t t r a c t e d to s p r i n g s ,  w e l l s , b o d i e s o f water, s t r a n g e  rock  formations,  T r a v e l l e r s approach t h i s f o u n t a i n w i t h c a u t i o n , polluting  the f o u n t a i n .  a snake c r o s s e d  As  taking care  But as the c o n t r a c t o r rode p a s t  the road.  becoming i m p a t i e n t w i t h  and c e r t a i n t r e e s ) . to a v o i d  the f o u n t a i n ,  The man stopped h i s m o t o r c y c l e ,  but a f t e r  the snake's slow pace, he surged ahead.  the c o n t r a c t o r rode over the snake, he imagined t h a t i t might  somehow wind i t s e l f up on the m o t o r c y c l e wheel and b i t e him.  This  thought f r i g h t e n e d him to the p o i n t t h a t he l o s t h i s b l a o r secondary soul.  The c o n t r a c t o r became very  i n c i d e n t and c o n s u l t e d  ill  immediately f o l l o w i n g  a renowned l a d y o r a c l e .  She presented  this a  120 d i a g n o s i s and had  c h a s t i s e d him  angered the k l u and The  s e v e r e l y , c a l l i n g him  informed him  their horror  the TCV  cooks, who  the work of  discovered  to  and  w i t h i n which meals were mixed f o r the e n t i r e  the o r i g i n of  Her  the performance o f a w r a t h f u l  Nebesky-Wojkowitz d e s c r i b e s as  The  l a d y o r a c l e was  t h i s p o l t e r g e i s t and  the c o n t r a c t o r ' s g h o s t .  done a f t e r a l l e f f o r t s  Shortly  m a g i c a l l y appeared i n the ovens,  s c h o o l were f l o a t i n g about the k i t c h e n . once more c o n c e r n i n g  who  t h a t he would d i e w i t h i n a week.  b e g i n work a t f o u r a.m.,  t h a t huge l o g s had  t h a t the g r e a t c a u l d r o n s  required  ' e v i l man'  c o n t r a c t o r subsequently d i e d w i t h i n the week.  afterwards,  it  an  she  to subdue the e v i l  pronounced  s o l u t i o n to the m a t t e r  sbyln sreg r i t u a l ,  "the b u r n i n g  consulted  of an e v i l  doer and  which  spirit,  to b r i n g him  mostly on  the  p a t h o f v i r t u e have f a i l e d " (1956:528). Monks were h i r e d by TCV p o l t e r g e i s t remained.  to perform t h i s r i t u a l , but f a i l e d -  Following  t h i s f a i l u r e , TCV  requested  Dharmsala sngags-pa, a r e i n c a r n a t e Rnying-ma-pa lama who o f f i c i a l weathermaker and c o n t r a c t o r ' s ghost.  But  his  t h i s sngags-pa was  to d e f e a t  The  i s the  r e l u c t a n t to  i t would r e q u i r e an t h a t he h i m s e l f i n c r e a s e d by  extremely doubted the  people, however, p e r s i s t e d  and,  a f t e r o f f e r i n g s u f f i c i e n t l i b a t i o n s o f b a r l e y beer (chang)  to the sngags-pa, h i s consent was The  exceedingly  i t , i t s power h a v i n g  f a i l u r e o f the f i r s t exorcism. finally,  t h a t now  zhal-'adon to c o n t r o l the ghost and  capabilities  the c h i e f  the major Dharmsala e x o r c i s t , to subdue the  perform the exorcism, c l a i m i n g wrathful  the  secured.  e x o r c i s t I n s t r u c t e d some TCV  r e s i d e n t s to go  to  the  c o n t r a c t o r ' s house, where they would f i n d h i s c h i l d r e n p l a y i n g  outside  121 and  h i s widow s i t t i n g  sngags-pa p r e d i c t e d , and  the TCV  i n the d o o r s t e p r e c i t i n g her r o s a r y .  the  the c o n t r a c t o r ' s f a m i l y were found so engaged,  r e s i d e n t s took c o n f i d e n c e  i n the e x o r c i s t ' s power.  then gave the r e s i d e n t s a l a r g e s k i n bag and  ordered  to the c o n t r a c t o r ' s house and walk around i t . the bag c i r c l e d  As  them to take i t  While the man  the house, he suddenly found t h a t the empty  appeared to weigh one  kilo.  burned i t i n a f i r e .  The  The  bag was  ghost d i d n o t  returned  He  carrying bag  to the e x o r c i s t  who  return.  D  T h i s l a y r e t e l l i n g of an e x o r c i s m weaves together a number o f themes.  I t condemns a wealthy c o n t r a c t o r who  cosmic h i e r a r c h y and  failed  to r e s p e c t  thereby h i n t s a t the p o s s i b i l i t y  the  t h a t wealth as  w e l l as dbang might pose dangers f o r the  'legitimate' hierarchy.  i t a l s o suggests t h a t the c o n t r a c t o r had  s u f f i c i e n t importance to  enable him  to become a p o w e r f u l ghost.  I t cautions  But  against  underestimating  the s t r e n g t h of an e v i l s p i r i t , a message the e x o r c i s t  may  to communicate to h i s p a r i s h , who  have wished  initially  seek h i s s e r v i c e s .  the enormity o f presses be  But  the task and  upon everyone the  did not, a f t e r a l l ,  I t i s the e x o r c i s t ' s emphasis upon  the u n c e r t a i n t y o f  the outcome  that  t h e s i s t h a t i n s u f f i c i e n t r e l i g i o u s power can  defeated. Furthermore, a sngags-pa who  related  has n o t mastered a l l o f  the mantras  to h i s t u t e l a r y d i e t y , whose thoughts s t r a y from m e d i t a t i o n  the p o i n t o f h i s death, o r who dbang, w i l l become a r g y a l - p o I n the h i e r a r c h y o f g h o s t s ,  at  engages i n u n e t h i c a l a p p l i c a t i o n o f h i s c a p a b l e of a c c o m p l i s h i n g  sngags-pas w i t h  incomplete  much harm. religious  122 knowledge ( n o t y e t e n l i g h t e n e d ) o r those who r e l i g i o n , assume the h i g h e s t s t a t u s .  One  have turned away from  Dge-lugs-pa s p r u l - s k u  commented t h a t such a t a n t r i c g h o s t can even m a n i f e s t i t s e l f w i t h animal head o f i t s former  t u t e l a r y d e i t y and w i e l d much o f t h a t  d e i t y ' s power, b u t do so, of c o u r s e , w i t h o u t d i r e c t i o n o f the d e i t y .  the  The  the i n t e n t i o n a l i t y  f a r - r e a c h i n g impact  may  have on T i b e t a n s o c i e t y i s i l l u s t r a t e d  The  Shugs-ldan  and  t h a t a major r g y a l - p o  i n the f o l l o w i n g h i s t o r y :  Rgyal-po  Many y e a r s ago a f t e r  the time of Srong-btsan  great king of a united T i b e t ) ,  there was  Sgam-po (the  a dge-bshes who  was  first  extremely  l e a r n e d and wrote commentaries on Buddhism. Something went wrong, however, and  there was  much c o n t r o v e r s y about h i s w r i t i n g s .  T i b e t a n government f i n a l l y d e c i d e d wrapped him up river.  i n a sheepskin,  f l o a t e d down the r i v e r . and  she opened i t .  to do away w i t h him and caught  sewed i t c l o s e d , and  A t t h a t time h i s mother saw  him d y i n g and  The s h e e p s k i n reached  He was  The  threw him  into  f o l l o w e d him as  the bank o f the  about to d i e of s u f f o c a t i o n and  him, the he  river  she  was  beside h e r s e l f . She  meant to i n s t r u c t him as f o l l o w s : "You a r e educated,  so much, do n o t be a f r a i d of what might happen to you and a s s i s t whomever has helped you h u r t you." she s a i d ,  But i n her h a s t e , "Harm those who  remember to  i n t h i s l i f e and harm those who the mother's wording went awry.  helped you and h e l p those who  Thus her words became engraved  you know  i n h i s mind.  He was  harmed  r e b o r n as a  have Instead you."  123 r g y a l - p o and proceeded  to harm a l l those who had helped him and helped  those who had harmed him.  Even  those members o f the T i b e t a n  government who had k i l l e d him he now a s s i s t e d . While the mother gave h e r mistaken a d v i c e , a b l a c k c a t sprang o u t of  the bag and r a n to a nearby mountain  into  the mountain.  where the c a t was absorbed  A t t h a t p o i n t he changed i n t o  the r g y a l - p o . The  knowledge o f the e x i s t e n c e o f t h i s r g y a l - p o spread f a r and wide. D u r i n g the time o f one o f the D a l a i Lamas, t h i s Shugs-ldan r g y a l - p o was  c r e a t i n g o b s t a c l e s a f f e c t i n g whatever  the D a l a i Lama wished  to do.  The D a l a i Lama c o n s u l t e d h i s c h a m b e r l a i n and informed him o f the need of The  a sngags-pa  to perform a dur puja and asked i f one were a v a i l a b l e .  chamberlain r e p l i e d  t h a t one e x i s t e d and the government  subsequently s e n t a message down from sngags-pa's  presence.  When the sngags-pa at  first  the P o t a l a r e q u e s t i n g the  r e c e i v e d h i s i n v i t a t i o n to the P o t a l a he was  f u l l o f f e a r as to what might happen, he w o r r i e d t h a t he  might have been the cause o f c e r t a i n t h i n g s .  When he reached the  p a l a c e , the D a l a i Lama asked him, "What do you do these days?" sngags-pa living.  The  answered t h a t he performed dur exorcisms and earned h i s The D a l a i Lama then asked hira i f he c o u l d do r g y a l - d u r  exorcisms.  The sngags-pa  replied  t h a t he c o u l d and the D a l a i Lama  then asked him to perform such a r i t u a l i n o r d e r to e x o r c i s e the Shugs-ldan.  The sngags-pa  thread-crosses referred  prepared gtor-mas and f a s h i o n e d  to by T i b e t a n s as rnara-mkh'as.  The most simple rnam-rakh'a c o n s i s t s o f two c r o s s e d s t i c k s are  bound w i t h c o l o r e d  threads u n t i l  which  the o b j e c t resembles a cob-web  124 (Nebesky-Wojkowitz 1956:369).  More complex forms include elaborate  geometric configurations of thread-crosses which may reach ten or more meters i n height.  According to Nebesky-Wojkowitz (1956:370),  these  thread-crosses, when used for e x o r c i s t i c purposes, entangle e v i l spirits  "just l i k e a f l y [ i s entangled] i n a cob-web." Dharmsala  sngags-pas, however, maintain that, i n the perception of the e v i l s p i r i t , a rnam-mkh'a becomes a rainbow, and thereby serves to a t t r a c t the s p i r i t . While the sngags-pa  prepared the rnam-mkh'as f o r the r i t u a l ,  the Shugs-ldan rgyal-po appeared a t the exorcism s i t e .  He watched h i s  body being sculpted into a gtor-ma (dough cake) and wondered what the sngags-pa was up to, thinking, "He's making my shape on the a l t a r . " The sngags-pa  could see that the Shugs-ldan was present.  Suddenly, he  threw some powerful mantras and the Shugs-ldan was absorbed into the gtor-ma.  But when the Shugs-ldan found himself imprisoned i n the  gtor-ma, everything was a t once completely transformed for him. The rnam-mkh'as became rainbows, he believed that he was inhabiting a palace and had wonderful things to eat, a r i v e r , and many b e a u t i f u l things.  Then he was cast away by the sngags-pa.  The Shugs-ldan  could not escape because there was too much temptation for him. He was banished beyond the great ocean f o r twelve years. end of this period he returned and found h i s way to Tibet. some time eating cast-away  At the  He spent  gtor-mas and food and slowly recovered  his harming strength. Once more he became extremely powerful and harmful, although on occasion he was h e l p f u l . people mistook him for a lha.  There was a time when  People gave equal status to both the  125 Shugs-ldan O r a c l e of T i b e t ) . how  and  t o Pehar ( t h e Nechung O r a c l e ,  Therefore,  the D a l a i Lama had  Pehar o r i g i n a t e d and  d i f f e r e n c e s were, and i s not  how  c o n s u l t him,  man  The  because he always harms.  Shugs-ldan  Some people  Oracle do  however.  i s r e p l e t e with  contradictions:  dge-bshes w r i t i n g h e r e t i c a l B u d d h i s t commentaries; k i l l i n g  by sewing him  i n t o a m e t a p h o r i c a l "womb" and  r i v e r ; mistaken a d v i c e  from a mother; and  w h i l e a s s i s t i n g those who  harmed him.  the symbolic s i g n i f i c a n c e o f a r g y a l - p o contradictory.  But  c a s t i n g him  harming those who  These o p p o s i t i o n s  in a helped  him  about him  is  the  must remark upon the e x o r c i s t ' s a n x i e t y  summoned b e f o r e the D a l a i Lama.  a  underscore  - that everything  w i t h o u t , f o r the p r e s e n t , a n a l y z i n g  r g y a l - p o ' s exorcism, we  may  t o make i t c l e a r t o people  be c o n s u l t e d .  T h i s h i s t o r y of a famous r g y a l - p o a learned  oracle  the Shugs-ldan o r i g i n a t e d , what t h e i r  which c o u l d  usually consulted  chief state  T h i s sngags-pa f e a r s t h a t  when  something  have gone amiss as a r e s u l t of the a p p l i c a t i o n s of h i s powers. The  above h i s t o r y presented by a Rnying-ma-pa sngags-pa d i f f e r s  markedly from a v e r s i o n g i v e n reincarnate  by Nebesky-Wojkowitz wherein a  lama named Bsod-nams Grags-pa i n s p i r e d the j e a l o u s y  other reincarnates plots against  and  the T i b e t a n  his l i f e ,  intrigues...decided  Government.  the lama, "weary o f the  to l e a v e  Though r e s i s t i n g many incessant  the world v o l u n t a r i l y " (1956:134).  ghost, however, i s persuaded by a d i s c i p l e to take revenge and calamities befall Tibet.  The  of  only  lama c a p a b l e of e x o r c i s i n g  His great  the  126 s p i r i t i s the abbot of Mindoling (a Dge-lugs-pa motiastery), but this abbot i s tricked while performing the exorcism by an aspect of Tshangs-pa (possibly Pehar).  He loses his concentration, and i s  unable to imprison the s p i r i t .  F i n a l l y , the Tibetan Government  discovers that the cause of the rgyal-po's wrath was  the i n j u s t i c e  perpetrated towards Bsod-nams Grags-pa, decides to appease the s p i r i t , and requests that i t assume the role of a Dge-lugs-pa protective deity - a request to which the rgyal-po agrees (1956:135-136).  The descriptions of Rdo-rje Shugs-ldan's abode i s  replete with graphic d e t a i l s of scattered corpses, bodily e f f l u v i a , dripping blood, etc., a l l of which reportedly appeals to the demonic appetite. While the f i r s t history of the Shugs-ldan oracle, given by a Rnying-ma-pa cave meditator, stresses the relationship between the misdirected ambition of a dge-bshes and the contrariness of his ghost; the second version, offered by Nebesky-Wojkowitz (1956), casts the rgyal-po as a victim of the ambitions of other lamas.  In Dharmsala,  the Shugs-ldan oracle i s a problematic figure f o r both professed Dge-lugs-pas and Rnying-ma-pas.  One informant claimed that the  D a l a i Lama had once held an i n i t i a t i o n i n India and requested that any of  the would-be i n i t i a t e s who a t any time had consulted the  oracle not p a r t i c i p a t e .  Shugs-ldan  In response to the Dalai Lama's request, many  monks and lay Tibetans purportedly l e f t the scene.  This informant was  also quite c e r t a i n that a reincarnate lama had written a recent treatise on the subject of the Shugs-ldan oracle, o u t l i n i n g the reasons why  this oracle was not i n keeping with the p r i n c i p l e s of the  127 Dge-lugs-pa s e c t . rebuttal  Furthermore, another lama attempted  to t h i s t r e a t i s e b u t was  to p u b l i s h  d i s c o u r a g e d from doing so by  the  D a l a i Lama, who  felt  squabbles.  Shugs-ldan o r a c l e i s a l s o known to be an o r a c l e  The  the r e b u t t a l might c r e a t e u n d e s i r a b l e  guards h i s s t a t u s j e a l o u s l y , and might v e n t u r e elsewhere f o r  who  a  sectarian who  w i l l harm former ' c l i e n t s '  who  advice.  T h a t the Shugs-ldan o r a c l e c o n t i n u e s to secure f o l l o w e r s among T i b e t a n s i n e x i l e i s found p r o b l e m a t i c by f o r the Shugs-ldan Rgyal-po r e p r e s e n t s r e l i g i o u s power.  The  Shugs-ldan o r a c l e , thus, may  Without e n t e r i n g  which i s beyond the scope of may  well underlie  others,  the u n e t h i c a l a p p l i c a t i o n of  c e r t a i n ambivalence to r e l i g i o u s power o r r e l i g i o u s power.  the D a l a i Lama and  to the  w e l l symbolize a implications  i n t o an a n a l y s i s o f  t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n , we  may  the  of  doctrine,  l o o k to what  the D a l a i Lama's acceptance o f Pehar, the Nechung  o r a c l e (the c h i e f s t a t e o r a c l e o f T i b e t ) , and  h i s r e j e c t i o n of  the  Shugs-ldan. Nebesky-Wojkowitz (1956) c i t e s numerous o r i g i n s a t t r i b u t e d Pehar, most o f which p l a c e him d e i t y of Tibet's  the k i n g o f Hor,  one  e p i c hero Gesar.  as a non-Buddhist p e r s o n a l of  to  protective  the n o t a b l e kingdoms conquered  C e r t a i n accounts have Pehar subjugated  by by  Padmasambhava w h i l e o t h e r s a s s e r t t h a t Gesar h i m s e l f  subdued Pehar  compelled him  in particular, a  to become a defender of Buddhism, and,  protector  of the T i b e t a n  ministers  i s invoked to possess the Nechung o r a c l e , the  Government r e c e i v e s state.  The  Government.  pronouncements and  Nechung o r a c l e  When Pehar or one  of h i s Tibetan  p r e d i c t i o n s on a f f a i r s  i s thereby the most r e s p e c t e d  and  of  o r a c l e among  128 Tibetans, and Pehar, the most powerful deity of the Tibetan pantheon to take possession of a human. Although there are different versions of Pehar's arrival in Tibet, what emerges most significantly for the purpose at hand is that the epic of Gesar may not be sung in the Nechung monastery lest Pehar be upset upon being reminded "of the defeat he had suffered" (1956:105). This observance is currently upheld with respect to the Nechung monastery in Dharmsala. Pehar is the trusted protector of the Tibetan state despite his non-Tibetan and non-Buddhist origins because he was converted to Buddhism either by a great hero Gesar or the tantric specialist Padmasambhava; in other words, Pehar did not "achieve" his religious knowledge or power. Rather, he was granted his religious power by a great lha. By not singing the legend of Gesar in the "presence" of Pehar - I.e., i n the Nechung monastery, Tibetans demonstrate their respect for a demon who has submitted himself to the ethical tenets of Buddhism. The Shugs-ldan oracle, on the other hand, symbolizes someone who has systematically acquired religious power, but who has broken free of ethical constraints. i  Dbang Contests  Tibet, according to the legends surrounding Padmasambhava, was orginally converted to Buddhism through a series of contests between Bon-po priests and Padmasambhava, contests which pitted the magical power of the priests against that of the Guru much in the following manner:  129  The  S t o r y o f T a r a Lee Wang  I t so happened t h a t d u r i n g the r e i g n o f K i n g K h r i - s r o n g Lde-btsan, when the Bon r e l i g i o n was p r e v a l e n t i n T i b e t , but Guru Rinpoche was b e g i n n i n g to c o n v e r t the l a n d to Buddhism, the K i n g ' s chief minister died. to  send h i s s o u l up to a h i g h e r p l a c e , a b e t t e r w o r l d .  ritual,  (to  t h e i r v e r s i o n o f the lam-'adun r i t u a l .  ttie r i t u a l ,  performed  For this  each o f the competing  F o r the performance  p r a c t i t i o n e r s drew a human f i g u r e  r e p r e s e n t the s o u l o f the deceased), and then u t t e r e d h i s  respective  scriptures.  The K i n g d e c i d e d  to judge which r e l i g i o n was s u p e r i o r by  o b s e r v i n g the success o f each s i d e . found to  was  the K i n g i n v i t e d both B u d d h i s t monks and Bon p r i e s t s and each  performed of  A f t e r h i s death, a s p e c i a l r i t u a l  t h a t the drawing  D u r i n g the Bon r i t u a l ,  the K i n g  began to assume human form and suddenly  started  speak. , The f i g u r e announced t h a t he was T a r a L e e Wang ( t h e dead  m i n i s t e r ) , l i s t e d h i s accomplishments as m i n i s t e r , r e c a l l e d h i s c o n v e r s a t i o n s w i t h the K i n g , and d e s c r i b e d h i s t r a v e l s . f i g u r e recounted suprised ritual  the l i f e h i s t o r y o f T a r a Lee Wang.  to hear the f i g u r e ' s speech.  and found  figure.  The K i n g was v e r y  He then v i s i t e d  the B u d d h i s t  t h a t , a l t h o u g h they were a l s o p e r f o r m i n g a r i t u a l to  guide the s o u l o f the deceased the paper  I n s h o r t , the  m i n i s t e r , n o t h i n g was happening  From t h i s o b s e r v a t i o n the K i n g concluded  with  t h a t the  Bon monks r e a l l y had the b e t t e r command o f t a n t r i e mantras. The K i n g c o n s u l t e d Guru Rinpoche about h i s o b s e r v a t i o n s and s a i d ,  130 " I have seen c e r t a i n m i r a c u l o u s t h i n g s when the Bon p r i e s t s whereas n o t h i n g happens when the B u d d h i s t monks p r a y . " replied, " A l l right.  I gave one  known by o t h e r s - they a r e v e r y s a c r e d .  is?"  Rinpoche to a l l the  I n t h a t i n i t i a t i o n I gave a  t a n t r i c name to a l l the King's m i n i s t e r s .  human f i g u r e who  Guru  i n i t i a t i o n a l o n g time ago  ministers, a tantric i n i t i a t i o n .  pray,  special  These t a n t r i c names a r e n o t Why  don't you go  to t h a t  speaks, and ask him what h i s s p e c i a l t a n t r i c name  Guru Rinpoche a l s o gave the K i n g a r d o - r j e ( t h u n d e r b o l t ) to h i d e  In the f r o n t p o c k e t o f h i s phyu-pa ( c l o a k ) , and i n s t r u c t e d him  to  a l l o w o n l y the top of i t to p r o t r u d e from the lower f o l d o f h i s phyu-pa. The K i n g then went to the Bon still  talking.  m i n i s t e r s who  r i t u a l , and  The K i n g then asked,  r e c e i v e d a t a n t r i c i n i t i a t i o n from Guru Rinpoche  I don't know. I was  revealed  When Guru Rinpoche  h i d i n g behind  was  giving  the w a l l , behind  The  that thing!  the water."  h i s s h i r t and  he was,  and  to harm the s o u l o f T a r a Lee Wang.  Finally,  me  the f i g u r e  the f i g u r e r e p l i e d  t h a t he  to r e b i r t h .  was  The bdud had come, i n  I f the s o u l o f Tara Lee Wang  n o t "caught" w i t h t h i s p u j a , then he c o u l d n o t be d i r e c t e d  b e t t e r world,  the  n o t Tara Lee Wang.  an e v i l bdud and n o t the s o u l o f T a r a Lee Wang.  was  Then the K i n g  c r y i n g , " P l e a s e don't do t h a t - don't show  The K i n g asked him who  fact,  "Oh,  these names, he k i c k e d me  I t i s so p o w e r f u l - t h a t r d o - r j e ! "  t h a t he was  was  and  figure replied,  the t i p o f the t h u n d e r b o l t from underneath  f i g u r e became t e r r i f i e d ,  confessed  t h a t the f i g u r e  " S i n c e you a r e one o f the  r e c e i v e d a t a n t r i c name, what i s t h a t name?"  out.  saw  to a  131  As  the n a r r a t o r of  i s prevented  this  t a l e e x p l a i n e d , whether o r n o t  the  from harming the s o u l o f the deceased o r a s i c k  depends upon the p e r s o n a l dbang o f the man depends upon how power (dbang).  who  evil  person  performs the p u j a .  It  h i g h the lama i s , h i s s t r e n g t h , and h i s p e r s o n a l The  s t r e n g t h o f the Bon  p r a y e r s c o u l d not match  t h a t o f Guru Rinpoche. T i b e t a n s a r e , thus, w e l l - v e r s e d n o t o n l y In the v a r i e t y p o w e r f u l magicians  of v a r i o u s r e l i g i o n s , b u t a l s o In the  o f Buddhism i n cases o f magical combat. go u n c h a l l e n g e d  i n the present-day  But  of  superiority  t h i s s u p e r i o r i t y does n o t  c o n t e x t of refugee l i f e .  saddhus, f o r example, f r e q u e n t l y t r a v e l to Dharmsala.  Indian  While some come  on a p i l g r i m a g e to v i s i t l o c a l Hindu s h r i n e s , o t h e r s , f a m i l i a r  with  t h e i r glamorous image i n the West, f o l l o w the t o u r i s t flow i n hopes o f  o p i c k i n g up alms. may  be  T i b e t a n s i n Dharmsala acknowledge t h a t these saddhus  t a n t r i e p r a c t i t i o n e r s w i t h some o f the same s k i l l s possessed  by  T i b e t a n sngags-pas. T i b e t a n s who  read I n d i a n newspapers a l s o read o c c a s i o n a l accounts  of I n d i a n t a n t r i e s engaging i n heinous  r i t e s such as c h i l d  a l l o f which c o n t r i b u t e s to a r e l a t i v e unease e x p e r i e n c e d o f T i b e t a n s where saddhus a r e concerned.  When a b r i d g e  F o r s y t h e Ganj w i t h McCleod Ganj had been almost been washed away i n the monsoon, word was  two  boys between the ages of three and  by a number  linking  r e b u i l t a f t e r I t had  out among T i b e t a n mothers i n  Dharmsala to keep a v i g i l a n t eye upon t h e i r o f f s p r i n g . rumoured t h a t a d i s r e p u t a b l e saddhu was  sacrifice,  It  was  s e a r c h i n g the l o c a l a r e a f o r e i g h t to bury  under each end  of  the new  bridge,  spirits  who  capture  v i c t i m s would be s a t i a t e d by the boys and r e f r a i n from harming  future  the l o g i c o f t h i s s a c r i f i c e b e i n g  gather  under b r i d g e s and p r e c i p i t a t e a c c i d e n t s  i n o r d e r to  travellers.  A T i b e t a n maskmaker's daughter was saddhu who was d e c e i v e d for  t h a t the e v i l  r e p o r t e d l y captured  by the  by h e r r e c e n t l y shaved head (a p r o p h y l a c t i c  l i c e and ringworm), but was a b r u p t l y d i s c a r d e d by him upon h i s  d i s c o v e r y o f her sex. saddhus by T i b e t a n s . Tibetan  Such r e p o r t s ground an u n f a v o r a b l e  On one o c c a s i o n , an I n d i a n saddhu entered  r e s t a u r a n t w h i l e I happened  to be c o n v e r s i n g  She immediately appeared to be a g i t a t e d , q u e s t i o n e d presence i n the r e s t a u r a n t , and f i n a l l y manager expressed  reception of  with  a  the manager.  the saddhu's  persuaded him to l e a v e .  The  to me h e r f e a r t h a t he might c a s t the e v i l eye upon  her and/or the r e s t a u r a n t i f he remained i n s i d e f o r a l o n g time. have," she s a i d ,  "no p r o t e c t i o n a g a i n s t them."  Sngags-pas and T i b e t a n monks, however, a r e c o n f i d e n t t h a t have s u f f i c i e n t power to c o u n t e r a c t  the e v i l  they  i n f l u e n c e o f saddhus, b u t  h o l d , a l l the same, an i n t e n s e d i s l i k e o f them, f o r saddhus may them i n v i r t u a l r e l i g i o u s d u e l s .  and T i b e t a n s , and f r e q u e n t e d  bathing  spot f o r Indians  by T i b e t a n monks and lamas.  o c c a s i o n , a number o f saddhus convened a t the s p r i n g , and  On  one  the T i b e t a n  monks, b e l i e v i n g t h a t the saddhus had p o l l u t e d the s p r i n g s w i t h r i t e s o f b l a c k magic, performed a r i t u a l they  resumed  their bathing.  engage  The s p r i n g s o f Bhagsunath, a Hindu  s h r i n e i n the Dharmsala a r e a , a r e a popular  before  "We  there  to c o u n t e r a c t  their  the e v i l  The d i s a f f e c t i o n harbored by the  T i b e t a n monks towards the saddhus, however, i s more a r e s u l t o f the  133 f a c t t h a t the saddhus' a c t i o n s f o r c e the T i b e t a n s (and any  i n t o a power  thereby a d i s p l a y o f power), than t h a t the T i b e t a n s p o s s i b i l i t y of  contest  entertained  defeat.  GonclusIon  Rgyal-pos, the ghosts o f monks or lamas "turned r e l i g i o n " , p r o v i d e a c l u e to the problem of e v i l  away from  i n Tibetan  cosmology  - v i z . , they h i n t a t the f a c t t h a t r e l i g i o u s power might be amoral. I f r e l i g i o u s power can be amoral In so f a r as u t i l i z e d w i t h o u t the a p p l i c a t i o n o f mind, i t p r e s e n t s  a way  alternate hierarchy. o r any  occasion  unattenuated by  i t may  be a t t a i n e d  the " B o d h i c l t t a "  to c o n s t r u c t an u n e t h i c a l b u t  or  (enlightened) competitive  Dge-lugs-pa lamas f e a r a p u b l i c d i s p l a y o f dbang  which n e c e s s i t a t e s  i t s major a p p l i c a t i o n , s i n c e dbang,  "wisdom" or c o n f o r m i t y  constitutes a destructive force.  to the B u d d h i s t d o c t r i n e ,  Furthermore, t h i s d e s t r u c t i v e  force  can be countered o n l y w i t h the e x e r c i s e o f a g r e a t e r amount o f dbang. The  controversy  s u r r o u n d i n g the " l e g i t i m a c y " o f  p o i n t s up a major focus which e l e v a t e s provides underlies  of t h i s d i s s e r t a t i o n , t h a t the very  humans i n the r e l i g i o u s h i e r a r c h y ,  the g r e a t e s t the  the Shugs-ldan  structured universe,  but  " e i d e t i c r e d u c t i o n " , demons can  p o s s i b i l i t y of a hierarchy  What  t h a t e v i l beings are a n t i t h e t i c a l  t h a t through what H u s s e r l  accompany T i b e t a n n o t i o n s  factor  dbang, a l s o  t h r e a t to i t s ' l e g i t i m a t e ' a s c e n t .  threat i s not  Oracle  (1962) has  to a termed  s t r i p away the B u d d h i s t tenets which  of cosmological  l e g i t i m a c y and  expose  unmotivated by e t h i c a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s  the and  134 s u b s t a n t i a t e d by sheer achievement a c c u m u l a t i o n o f dbang.  a l l o f which must be read as the  135  CHAPTER V  TRICKS, TRAPS, AND  TRANSFORMATIONS: TIBETAN STRATEGIES OF  When a T i b e t a n Is found a s t r o l o g e r to be s p i r i t s who exorcism  t r e s p a s s a g a i n s t humans and  i s p r e s c r i b e d to a l l e v i a t e  to y i e l d  (1) z h i ; (2) rgyas;  the B u d d h i s t  spirits,  d o c t r i n e , an  the p a t i e n t ' s s u f f e r i n g .  In  that Tibetan r i t u a l s are p r i m a r i l y dichotomized  ' p e a c e f u l ' o r 'jwrathful'.  subdivided  of d i v i n e r , o r a c l e , or  the p r e s e n t o r p o t e n t i a l v i c t i m o f e v i l  Chapter I I I , I noted into  by decree  EXORCISM  But each o f these c a t e g o r i e s i s a g a i n  f o u r c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s o f T i b e t a n Buddhist (3) dbang; and  (4) drag.  ritual:  These f o u r  c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s r e p r e s e n t f o u r s t y l e s of s u b j u g a t i o n and  f o l l o w the  f o u r p o s s i b l e m a n i f e s t a t i o n s o f a m e d i t a t i o n a l d e i t y as p r e s e n t e d cham (monastic)  dance.  a mask c o l o u r e d white,  I n the performance o f cham, the dancer wears y e l l o w , r e d , or b l u e depending upon whether the  s t y l e of s u b j u g a t i o n adopted by subduing),  rgyas-ba  dbang (subduing  in a  (subduing  the d e i t y i s z h i - b a ( p e a c e f u l l y  through the a p p l i c a t i o n o f  by m a n i f e s t i n g power), o r drag-po  wealth),  (violent  subjugation). Each c h o s - r g y a l  (defender  of Buddhism) has  performances or dances c o r r e s p o n d i n g subjugation.  The  to these  a , r e p e r t o i r e of four  f o u r modes of  c h o i c e of s t y l e i s determined by  the o c c a s i o n .  The  136 performance o f monastic dance, a c c o r d i n g  to one dge-bshes who  teaches  i t a t a T i b e t a n s c h o o l i n I n d i a , i s to demonstrate how, i n a n c i e n t times,  the gods conquered e v i l .  The p a r t i c u l a r m a n i f e s t a t i o n ( z h l ,  r g y a s , dbang,or drag) adopted by the d e i t y would be prompted by the degree o f r e c a l c i t r a n c e e x h i b i t e d by the demon; f o r example, i f the demon does n o t submit b e f o r e t a c t i c s must be switched application.  the d e i t y ' s chosen a s p e c t ,  and the c h o s - r g y a l must t r y a more  T h e r e f o r e , i f the rgyas-ba  w i l l appear i n a dbang-bo mode.  aspect f a i l s ,  powerful the d e i t y  The s t r a t e g y u n d e r l y i n g mode  s e l e c t i o n always appears to i n c l u d e a p r e f e r e n c e l e a s t amount o f p r e s s u r e  then  then  f o r a p p l y i n g the  ( t h e most p e a c e f u l mode p o s s i b l e ) t o c o n t r o l  the demon. The  most p e a c e f u l o r z h i - b a mode i s adopted, as I d i s c u s s e d i n  Chapter I I I , when humans have i n f r i n g e d upon the s t a t u s p r e r o g a t i v e s of  the l e g i t i m a t e c o s m o l o g i c a l o r d e r , and, thus, corresponds  to what O r t n e r beings  refers  (1975:160).  In theory  to as a ' s e l f - e f f a c e m e n t ' on the p a r t o f human  However, when T i b e t a n s must d e a l w i t h demons o r  the demonic c o u s i n s  (as evidenced  by e v i l k l u and l e s s e r gods) o f  ' r i g h t e o u s ' k l u , sa-bdag, and l h a , they s e l e c t one o f the three a l t e r n a t e strategems:  rgyas-ba,  t h r e e strategems I w i l l  dbang-bo, o r drag-po.  g l o s s r e s p e c t i v e l y as " t r i c k s ,  These t r a p s , and  t r a n s f o r m a t i o n s " and p r e s e n t as three commentaries on the ' i l l u s o r y nature' of ambition mode, taken  i n a hierarchical society.  I n a d d i t i o n , each  i n sequence from the most p e a c e f u l to the most w r a t h f u l ,  r e p r e s e n t s a n e x p o n e n t i a l i n c r e a s e i n the ' d i r e c t n e s s ' o f address i.e.,  from ' s e l f - e f f a c e m e n t '  to ' a n n i h i l a t i o n ' .  -  137 TRICKS  The T i b e t a n m i l i e u i s a world r e p l e t e w i t h v a r i o u s demons and harmful  cosmic emanations, b u t these n e g a t i v e f o r c e s , a c c o r d i n g to  Buddhist  t e n e t , a r e harbored  t h e r e f o r e , may premise,  be c o u n t e r e d  t h a t ignorance  controllable e v i l ' .  under the c l o a k o f ignorance,  and,  w i t h what appears to be a b a s i c T i b e t a n  can be d e c e i v e d and  t h a t "confused  T i b e t a n s , f o r reasons which we w i l l  evil is address  l a t e r , p r e f e r to d e a l w i t h  t h e i r demons under p e a c e f u l a u s p i c e s  i.e.,  puja.  a z h i - b a o r rgyas-ba  But such a u s p i c e s are  effective  s o l e l y because they u t i l i z e numerous s t r a t e g i e s designed, to d e c e i v e demons who antidotes sick.  The  f o r example,  would thwart merit-making a c t i v i t i e s ,  to a s t r o l o g i c a l c y c l e s of v u l n e r a b i l i t y , and  to p r o v i d e  to h e a l  l o g i c u n d e r l y i n g these s t r a t e g i e s p o i n t s up a key  parameter d i v i d i n g human p o t e n t i a l from demonic a s p i r a t i o n , status  -  the  moral t h a t of  ambitions.  The Appeal o f C o n s t r u c t i o n s  A c q u i r i n g bsod-nams o r m e r i t enables a T i b e t a n to enhance h i s o r her chances o f a good r e b i r t h . the sum  Though bsod-nams i s weighed a g a i n s t  of an i n d i v i d u a l ' s bad deeds In the working o u t o f h i s o r  karma, bsod-nams i s a quantum which does not d i m i n i s h from lifetime  to the next and  i s r e a d i l y i n c r e a s e d through  the s p o n s o r i n g of monks, and  through  one  the performance  of v a r i o u s a c t s i n c l u d i n g p r a y e r s , r e l i g i o u s o f f e r i n g s , giving,  her  compassionate  the b u i l d i n g of b r i d g e s  138 and  m o n a s t e r i e s . The b u i l d i n g o f b r i d g e s  i s considered  especially  o  meritorious  since bridges  a i d numerous t r a v e l l e r s and p i l g r i m s w h i l e  monasteries s e r v i c e m u l t i p l e r e l i g i o u s f u n c t i o n s .  But a c t s o f g r e a t  merit-making such as these, whether they be r e l i g i o u s c o n s e c r a t i o n s secular constructions The T i b e t a n  tempt the o b s t r u c t i v e urges o f e v i l  spirits.  s o l u t i o n to these o b s t r u c t i v e urges i s to c o u n t e r  them w i t h t a c t i c a l d i v e r s i o n s . Tibetan  or  With r e s p e c t  to b r i d g e b u i l d i n g , the  s a i n t Thangton Gyalpo (Thang-ston r g y a l - p o ) i s c r e d i t e d  w i t h the most famous. bridges  While b u i l d i n g one o f h i s 58 i r o n s u s p e n s i o n  i n T i b e t , Thangton Gyalpo was f r u s t r a t e d by demons who would  come i n the n i g h t and wreak havoc on the work accomplished on the bridge  during  the day.  Finally,  the s a i n t c r e a t e d  seven dancers who  so e n t h r a l l e d the demons w i t h t h e i r performance t h a t the demons were diverted  from the b r i d g e and e a s i l y  Spirits  seeking  to d e s t r o y  subdued.  monasteries o r m u l t i - s t o r i e d b u i l d i n g s  receive a d i f f e r e n t greeting altogether.  When the w a l l s o f a new  monastery, nunnery, o r grand b u i l d i n g a r e completed, a l a r g e  erect  p h a l l u s molded from p l a s t e r o r wood and adorned w i t h g a r l a n d s o f f r u i t i s a f f i x e d to the top o f one w a l l spectators. eye  Tibetans  to c o n f r o n t any s t r e e t s i d e  informed me t h a t the p h a l l u s would t u r n away the  o f envious people whose thoughts might bode i l l  or i t s Inhabitants  f o r the b u i l d i n g  (envy i s thought to be a t h r e a t to the a c q u i s i t i o n  of dbang, whether s p i r i t u a l o r m a t e r i a l ) . The  h i s t o r i c a l p r e c e d e n t f o r t h i s procedure o c c u r r e d  c o n s t r u c t i o n o f a monastery i n T i b e t . day  to r a i s e the w a l l s ,  d u r i n g the  A l t h o u g h monks would l a b o r by  t h e i r e f f o r t s were demolished each n i g h t by  witches.  Finally,  to be completed.  the abbot d e v i s e d a p l a n e n a b l i n g the c o n s t r u c t i o n He decreed  t h a t a model o f an e r e c t p e n i s be  a t t a c h e d to the w a l l of the monastery.  A c c o r d i n g to legend, the  w i t c h e s a r r i v e d eager to d e s t r o y the b u i l d i n g and, of  m e r i t performed  thereby, the a c t s  by the monks, b u t the witches were f o r c e d to  r e t r e a t i n extreme embarassment a t the s i g h t o f the p h a l l u s . t h i s c u r i o u s event i n v i t e s a number of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s , e x e g e s i s , t h a t the p h a l l u s  turned the w i t c h e s away by  them, f i t s w i t h the p r e s e r v a t i o n o f Thangton Gyalpo's w i t c h e s and demons were thoroughly confused by  Although  the T i b e t a n  embarassing bridge.  The  the s i g h t o f a p h a l l u s  p r o j e c t i n g from a monastery and dancers on a p i l g r i m ' s b r i d g e ; i n o t h e r words, they were d e c e i v e d by unusual j u x t a p o s i t i o n s o f images o r the m a n i p u l a t i o n of  appearances.  R e f r a c t i n g the E v i l  Eye  A s t r o l o g i c a l c a l c u l a t i o n s o f t e n r e v e a l t h a t the s t r e n g t h s and weaknesses of an i n d i v i d u a l a r e s u b j e c t to c y c l e s o f f l u c t u a t i o n . the case o f the v e r y young and  the e l d e r l y , T i b e t a n s pay  a t t e n t i o n to the s t a t e o f the s r o g o r l i f e v i t a l i t y and bla  o r secondary s o u l .  special t h a t o f the  Women i n c h i l d b e a r l n g y e a r s must be  w i t h t h e i r l u o r body, young men  w i t h t h e i r dbang, and  In  concerned  important  o f f i c i a l s w i t h t h e i r r l u n g - r t a , which i n t h i s r e s p e c t i s regarded as the success o f t h e i r p o l i t i c a l may  policies.  These r e s p e c t i v e a n x i e t i e s  peak i n the i n d i v i d u a l ' s skag y e a r , one which r e c u r s every  twelve  years a f t e r h i s o r h e r t h i r t e e n t h year and renders the i n d i v i d u a l  p a r t i c u l a r l y v u l n e r a b l e to the workings o f e v i l s p i r i t s .  This  v u l n e r a b i l i t y may be c o u n t e r a c t e d i f the one s u s c e p t i b l e wears a s h i r t o r c o a t w i t h a sun and moon o r s w a s t i k a ( t h e emblem o f the wheel o f samsaric e x i s t e n c e ) sewn on the back. T i b e t a n thought,  These symbols, a c c o r d i n g to  a r e a u s p i c i o u s i n t h a t they r e p r e s e n t i l l u m i n a t i o n o r  the d i s p e l l i n g o f the ignorance so c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f e v i l Furthermore,  these symbols s e r v e to ward o f f the s u p e r s t i t i o n s  people might p r o j e c t towards the wearer. the sun, moon, and the s w a s t i k a  other  Thus, i t might be s a i d  that  transform a v u l n e r a b l e i n d i v i d u a l  someone who r e f r a c t s o r "educates" "educates"  beings.  into  the e v i l eye, t h a t i s , someone who  i g n o r a n c e and s u p e r s t i t i o n (which might be more r e a d i l y  termed "un-Buddhist  thought").  Change o f S t a t u s  A number o f techniques used  i n Tibetan healing r i t u a l s  also  address appearance as the i n t e r f a c e between the p a t i e n t and the e v i l spirit.  P r e c a u t i o n a r y measures a r e taken w i t h i n f a n t s and young  c h i l d r e n t r a v e l l i n g o u t s i d e the f a m i l y d w e l l i n g .  A black s t r i p e of  s o o t i s drawn down the c h i l d ' s nose, a custom d e r i v i n g from a legend about the goddess T a r a . invisible  The s t r i p e supposedly  renders  the c h i l d  to ghosts o r whatever beings might harbor designs on the  c h i l d o r the c h i l d ' s f a m i l y .  An i n f a n t so besmirched  i s deemed u g l y  and n o t worth the s t r i v i n g s o f demons. One common a n t i d o t e to i l l n e s s p r e s c r i b e d by o r a c l e s and lamas i s the ming-gyur l u - g y u r o r "name change, body change".  One lama  141 explained  t h a t T i b e t a n s o c c a s i o n a l l y r e c e i v e t h e i r names n o t from  lamas b u t r a t h e r from r e l a t i v e s . ' i n harmony' w i t h the person's become i l l .  I n such cases the names may n o t be  horoscope and cause the p e r s o n to  Another d i f f i c u l t y a r i s i n g i n the c o n t e x t o f names o c c u r s  i n the event some e v i l s p i r i t o r k l u happens to develop a grudge a g a i n s t someone and extends  t h i s grudge t o anyone b e a r i n g a l i k e name.  Thus, i t i s o f t e n i m p e r a t i v e f o r a n i n d i v i d u a l a f f l i c t e d w i t h to r e c e i v e a new name.  I f a person o r f a m i l y i s c o n t i n u a l l y  illness beset  w i t h i l l n e s s and names have been changed s e v e r a l times, the new name s e l e c t e d f o r the p a t i e n t might be something l i k e k h y i - s k y a g o r "dog excrement" o r s h i - s l o g , g l o s s e d as "death a r e thought  turned away".  These names  to d e f l e c t any j e a l o u s y o r h a t r e d n u r t u r e d by o t h e r s  towards the p a t i e n t and encourage t h e i r compassionate treatment o f him o r her.  While e v i l s p i r i t s would be s i n g u l a r l y d i s i n t e r e s t e d i n  anyone so b a s e l y named as "dog excrement" and warned o f f someone somewhat h e r o i c a l l y r e f e r r e d  to as "death  turned away" (which i m p l i e s  t h a t death was u n s u c c e s s f u l i n t r a p p i n g the p e r s o n ) , humans who might harbor n e g a t i v e sentiments  towards a p a t i e n t a r e reminded through the  use o f such names o f the i n d i v i d u a l ' s s u f f e r i n g and, thus,  ideally  e n j o i n e d n o t to c o n t r i b u t e to i t s f u r t h e r a n c e . New c l o t h i n g and even a new r o l e may a l s o be r e q u i r e d therapy f o r illness.  Harmful s p i r i t s a r e a t t a c h e d to the odors and w e l l - u s e d  c l o t h i n g which mark a person.  T h e r e f o r e , two n i g h t s p r i o r t o Lo-gsar,  the T i b e t a n New Year, a female  effigy  f a s h i o n e d from b a r l e y dough and  accompanied by c o i n s and b i t s o f o l d rags d i s t a n c e from a T i b e t a n home.  i s s e t o u t s i d e and a t some  Tibetans venture  t h a t the female  effigy  represents  the mother o f the household, a major a t t r a c t i o n , s i n c e  the  mother as a s u p p l i e r o f food and c a r e has been a primary i n t e r e s t f o r the e v i l s p i r i t s who past year. away from  may  have been i n h a b i t i n g  These s p i r i t s , the house.  (which may  The  e n t i c e d by  f o r the  the e f f i g y , a r e thus d i r e c t e d  f a m i l y members, who  remove "bad s m e l l s "  denote s i n s and p o l l u t i o n ) by r u b b i n g themselves a l l o v e r  w i t h a b a l l o f dough to be c o n t r i b u t e d e f f i g y , b a t h e , d r e s s i n new and  the household  to the entourage o f the  c l o t h e s w i t h the o n s e t o f the New  thereby elude m a l e v o l e n t beings once a g a i n .  female Year,  One T i b e t a n f a t h e r ,  f o l l o w i n g the i n s t r u c t i o n s o f an o r a c l e , went so f a r as to become a monk f o r a p e r i o d of e i g h t y e a r s i n o r d e r to cure h i s daughter's illness.  Change o f d r e s s , then, and o c c a s i o n a l l y d r a s t i c  of s t a t u s s e r v e to c o n f u s e and  alteration  t u r n away demons.  The Ransom R i t u a l  The fits  example o f the female e f f i g y s e t out b e f o r e T i b e t a n New  Year  i n t o a r i t u a l c a t e g o r y known as g l u d , an e f f o r t to p l a c a t e a  s u p e r n a t u r a l by o f f e r i n g  ( o r g i v i n g as i s the case w i t h demons or  i n f e r i o r s ) what amounts to a s a c r i f i c e prompting alleviating  a l h a to a s s i s t i n  the v i c t i m ' s s u f f e r i n g or d e s i g n e d to d i s t r a c t a demon  from i t s o r i g i n a l g o a l by p r o v i d i n g what to the demonic eye proves a tantalizing  substitute.  Now  T i b e t a n B u d d h i s t s openly express  h o r r o r of r i t u a l s a c r i f i c e e n t a i l i n g befitting Hindu  their  the k i l l i n g o f animals as a c t i o n s  t h e i r p r e - B u d d h i s t a n c e s t o r s o r the p a r t i c i p a n t s i n n o t a b l e  r i t u a l s such as Dasain i n Nepal  ( L i c h t e r 1980:61).  Therefore,  143 the s a c r i f i c e  i s performed by  i n v e r t i n g the n o t i o n of b l o o d  i f a d e i t y i s to be beseeched, and  sacrifice  by c o n t r i v i n g a metonymical p l o y  s u b s t i t u t e ) i f a demon Is to be d e c e i v e d .  I n the former case,  an  animal i s not s a c r i f i c e d , but, on b e h a l f o f the p a t i e n t , spared the butcher's  knife.  s p e c i f i c a l l y may  T h i s animal Is known as a t s h e - t h a r and  be a t s h e - l u g s  or even a tshe-bya ( l i f e popular  c h o i c e as  exile.  The  in  the f i v e c o l o u r s , r e d , y e l l o w ,  as an o f f e r i n g  a in  streamers  b l u e , green, and w h i t e , and i t s  f o r the remainder of i t s n a t u r a l l i f e by  the p a t i e n t  to the d e i t y r e c e i v i n g the p a t i e n t ' s s u p p l i c a t i o n . sheep o r  chickens.  A l t h o u g h demons have been known ( T u c c i 1980:177) to a t t a c k i n Dharmsala, where T i b e t a n s  quasi-urban  yak)  the l a t t e r b e i n g  i s tagged w i t h  Demons a r e not, however, o f f e r e d s a l v a g e d  animals,  more  i t i s a more a f f o r d a b l e t s h e - t h a r f o r T i b e t a n s  ear of the a n i m a l so d e s i g n a t e d  l i v i n g provided  from  ( l i f e sheep) or tshe-gyag ( l i f e  b i r d , often a chicken),  (a  domestic  f o r the most p a r t l e a d  l i f e s t y l e s , demons i n t r i g u e s o l e l y a f t e r humans.  s a c r i f i c e or g l u d ,  then, which has been g l o s s e d as  The  "ransom" by  Tucci  (1980), E k v a l l (1964:165), Nebesky-Wojkowitz (1956), c o n s i s t s of  an  e f f i g y o f the s i c k person s c u l p t e d from b a r l e y dough (tsamba) and u s u a l l y placed  upon a p l a t f o r m w i t h s m a l l c o i n s , b i t s o f the v i c t i m ' s  c l o t h i n g , e a t a b l e s , and,  i f necessary,  p o r t r a i t s o f the v i c t i m ' s  family. A young t r a n s l a t o r f o r a T i b e t a n Rinpoche maintained would never be " o f f e r e d " to a l h a , but devils:  " I f you  p r e s e n t an o f f e r i n g  instead "given"  that glud  to bdud o r  to a l h a , i t must be s e t i n a  h i g h , c l e a n p l a c e l i k e an a l t a r or up on a mountain, but  i f you  give  something to demons, then the b e s t p l a c e i s to l e a v e i t where three roads  intersect."  I f the g l u d a r e l e f t  i n such p l a c e s T i b e t a n s  say  t h a t the g l u d w i l l be brought to the a t t e n t i o n o f the demon no matter from which d i r e c t i o n he or she comes. E k v a l l speaks of these g l u d d i s p a t c h e d  to  "beyond-the-limits  p l a c e s " as combining "the concept of s u b s t i t u t i o n and an a g e n t who guilt  w i l l bear away m i s f o r t u n e and  f o r the s i n which has caused  r e s i d e n t s , one  Arts.  stop  a dirt  F o r McCleod Ganj  i n McCleod Ganj to the T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e o f two k i l o m e t e r s from McCleod G a n j ,  take a path up a r i d g e to a t o u r i s t h o s t e l and  T i b e t a n I n s t i t u t e of P e r f o r m i n g  Performing  one may the  into  Tse  A r t s and a sngags-pa sgom-pa.  becomes a t r a i l l e a d i n g up  veer  the  t h i s p o i n t , the former road c o n t i n u e s on to a remote I n d i a n finally,  the  t r a i l ) l e a d i n g from  C h o k l i n g (Tshe-mchog-gling) monastery, o r t u r n r i g h t  and,  of  o f the most p o p u l a r p l a c e s to l e a v e g l u d i s a remote  Approximately  l e f t and  d i s a s t e r by assuming  them" (1964:165).  bend i n the former B r i t i s h - b u i l t road (now the bus  the concept  From  settlement  to Himalayan r i d g e s .  Clearly  the c h o i c e o f t h i s road as a p l a c e to l e a v e g l u d p r o v i d e s a l o c a t i o n t h a t i s a t once r e l a t i v e l y remote from the " u r b a n i z e d " McCleod but a l s o d i r e c t l y musicians  and  Ganj,  In a path f r e q u e n t e d by a few monks, T i b e t a n  dancers, Western t o u r i s t s , and  the r e t u r n i n g n o c t u r n a l  gambler. D u r i n g what would be a skag y e a r ( e v e r y t w e l f t h year f o l l o w i n g one's t h i r t e e n t h year) f o r the D a l a i Lama o r a very h i g h i n c a r n a t e , o r upon the wish o f a p a r t i c u l a r group to d i s p l a y t h e i r homage, a rten-bzhugs  or "long l i f e "  ceremony i s performed w h e r e i n a g l u d o r  e f f i g y o f the D a l a i Lama o r the h i g h i n c a r n a t e , as the case may be, i s fashioned.  A l t h o u g h a rten-bzhugs r i t u a l may be performed f o r the  b e n e f i t o f a commoner, i t i s i n the case o f one performed f o r the D a l a i Lama t h a t an i n t e r e s t i n g c o n f l i c t o f i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s a r i s e s . D u r i n g the r i t u a l ,  f i v e young monks d r e s s e d  to r e p r e s e n t khandromas  (mkh'a-'agro-mas), the s k y - g o i n g goddesses, appro