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Lahul and Spiti




Page: 26/27

Hindu Books > Temples And Legends of India > Temples And Legends of Himachal Pradesh > Lahul and Spiti

Temples And Legends Of Himachal Pradesh

Page25

On the eve of New Year a dance is acted by the lamas in courtyard of a monastery belonging to the sect of Yellow Hats. The villagers are allowed to witness the show and they take it not as an entertainment but with all religious fervors. This sect was founded by Tsong-Kha-pa (13571419 A.D.) who is held by the Gelugpas (Yellow Hats) as an emanation of Manjushri; and Vajra Bhairava, called Dorje Jik-che in Tibetan, is its chief protector.

There is a mystery play called Black Hat Dance. Here the lama does not wear mask, instead he Puts On a. highly ornate head-dress. This dance is of pre-Buddhist origin. It is some sort of a pantomime accompanied some time by outcries and interjections.

Another dance of pre-Buddhist origin, i.e., of the times of Bompas, which has continued to this day, is Red Tiger Dance. It is ceremonised at the end of Old Year. The Bon religious practices included cannibalism and human sacrifice which were carried an with a view to propitiating the deities and exorcising the evil spirits. In his attempt to replace Bon cult by Buddhism the great lama Padma - sambhava cleverly adopted some of Bon rituals but only on their face. These devil dances were allowed to continue but the ghastly practices of human sacrifice and cannibalism were virtually put to an end.




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