|The world turmoil at the end of second decade
has produced some brutal uprootings and unusual transplatarions.
From the very beginning of their life in Serbia, the Kalmyks have lived
in a tight community in the same neighborhood and thus maintained close
mutual contact, where virtually everyone knew one another by virtue of
consanguinity, friendship or acquaintance. Joint celebrations of ethnic
and religious holidays, weddings, etc. as well as common mournings at the
funeral and memorial service rites were common denominator in the life
of this unique ethnic group.
Among the Serbs the Temple was known either as'Chinese Church'or 'Buddhist Church'.
|"The close interrelationship
between Kalmyk Buddhism and Kalmyk identity as a people with a language,
specific culture and historical unity indicates that these connections
have a long and deep history.
Ethnic identity for Kalmyks - their sense of themselves as a people - is bound up with their deeply ingrained practice of Buddhism and of Shamanism.Shamanism, a form of religious practice that by definition communes with the ancestral spirits as well as the spirits of nature and of a specific physical place, is especially vulnerable to disruption by loss of locale. Hence, exile from their territories propelled the Kalmyks into an alien world devoid of familiar homes and kin. It weakened their ability to practice Buddhism by destroying all their temples and religious artifacts, and separated them from Shamanism by removal from sacred locale and spirits of these places - in effect, robbing them of their own ethnic identity and any psychological means to access it."
from "LOST LOCALE, RETURN AND HEALING IN KALMYKIA" by Eva Jane Neumann Fridman,Brown University
|TOC > Ten years after > Celebration of tenth anniversary of building the Temple|