Schram, Louis, 1883-. The Monguors of the Kansu-Tibetan frontier: Part II. their religious life

Table of Contents

Publication Information

I. Intensiveness Of The Religious Life Of The Monguors And The Position Of Its Forms

Private And Public Religious Life

Position Of Lamaism

Failure Of Lamaism To Supersede Shamanism Completely

Position Of Shamanism

Ii. Introduction Of Buddhism And Lamaism In Hsining (huang-chung)

No Historical Data Before 1227 In The Annals Of Hsining

Old Occupants Of Huang-chung Were Not Buddhists

First Temple Built In Huang-chung

Not A Buddhist Temple

It Is Actually Called Pei Ch'an-ssu

Was Buddhism Spread By Colonists Or By Monks From Turkistan?

Was Buddhism Spread By Hsien-pi Tribes?

Was Buddhism Spread By The Buddhist Kings Of Liang-chou?

Historical Data According To Tibetan Sources

Diffusion Of Lamaism During The Yüan Dynasty (1280–1367)




Diffusion Of Lamaism During The Ming Dynasty (1368–1643)

General Policy Of The Ming

Peculiar Policy In Huang-chung

Founding Of The Lamasery Of Ch'ü-t'an

Titles And Domains Granted To Lamas

Reasons For This Policy

Three Peculiar Institutions For Lamas


Karwa 46

Ch'an-shih-chia (“master In Dhyana” Families)

No Living Buddhas In Huang-chung During The Ming Dynasty

Temples Built During The Ming Dynasty

Ch'ü-t'an-ssu, First Lamasery Built During The Ming Dynasty


Temples And History Of The Lamasery

Stagnation In The Diffusion Of Lamaism

Kumbum 61



History Of The Lamasery

Lamaism At The End Of The Ming Dynasty

Diffusion Of Lamaism During The Ch'ing Dynasty (1644–1911)

General Policy Of The Ch'ing

Lamaism Diffused By Monguor Lamas Of Ehr-ku-lung

Chang-chia Hutukhtu

T'u-kuan Hutukhtu

Sumpa Hutukhtu

Subsidiary Lamaseries Founded By Erh-ku-lung

Revolt Of Blo-bzan Bstan-dsin And The Lamas

What Were The Underlying Causes Of These Calamities?

Where Were The Three Celebrities Of Erh-ku-lung At That Time?

Consequences Of The Revolt

Conditions Of Erh-ku-lung In 1910–1920

Iii. The Lamaseries In Huang-chung

The Yellow Sect In Huang-chung

The Lamaseries Of Huang-chung Independent Of Lhasa

The Internal Organization Of The Lamaseries

Administration Of Lamaseries: Material Aspects

Officials And Their Attributes

Environment Of The Administration

Means Of Subsistence Of The Lamaseries




Oil And Grain Mills


Toll On Bridges

Collection Of Alms In Far-off Countries



Subjects Of The Lamaseries

Kinds Of Subjects

Present Status Of The Subjects In Relation To The Lamaseries

Farmers Offering Oil And Pigs

Service For Prayers And Alms Collections:

Repair Of The Lamasery:

Travel Of The Chief Of The Lamasery:

Administration Of Justice

Lamaseries As Administrative Centers Of The Country And Conditions Of The Subjects Before 1723

Branch Lamaseries

Administration And Officials

Domains And Revenues

Obligation To A Fa-t'ai When Invited

Obligation To Join The Retinue Of The Chief Of The Lamasery

Autonomy Of Branch Lamaseries

Lama Army

Interference Of The Emperor And T'u-ssu With The Lamaseries

Iv. Administration Of The Lamaseries: Educational And Religious Aspects


Lack Of Candidates

Causes Contributing To Lack Of Candidates

Number Of Lamas In Huang-chung

Centers For Recruiting Lamas In Huang-chung

Ways And Means Of Recruitment

Pupil And Master


First Vows

Second Vows

Relations Between Pupil And Master

The Ideal Monguor Lama In Huang-chung

How Lamas Provide For Their Subsistence

Community Of Lamas

Organization Of The Community Of The Lamas

Fa-t'ai, Called “master Of The Doctrine” (“lob-pon” Or “mk'ampo”)






Predilection For The College Of Philosophy, Its Causes

Living Buddhas


What Is A Living Buddha?

Application Of The System In Huang-chung

Procedure Of Becoming A Living Buddha In Huang-chung

Search For The Incarnation

Education Of The Monguor Living Buddhas

Behavior Of The Living Buddhas Of Huang-chung

Lamaism And Monasticism

V. The Red Sect In Huang-chung

General Aspects And Former Conditions Of The Red Sect In Huang-chung

Present Conditions Of The Red Sect In Huang-chung

Relations Between The Red And Yellow Lamas In Huang-chung

The Rite Of The 108 Springs


Vi. Shamanism


Social And Economic Conditions Of The Monguor Shamans Within The Clan

What Is A Shaman According To The Monguors And Ethnologists?

Succession Of The Shamans

Different Kinds Of Shaman

Behavior Among Shamans And Between Shamans And Monguors

No Enthusiasm Among The Monguors For The Duty Of Shaman

Dedication And Training Of The Monguor Shamans 15

Physical Training

Intellectual And Religious Training Of The Apprentices

Monguor Shamans And Neurosis

Shaman Dress And Implements



Caps 20

The Drum

The Knife

The Magic Staff

Spirits Honored By The Shamans

Shamans, Disciples Of The Taoist God Of The Five Roads

“god Of The Five Roads”

Temples Of The God Of The Five Roads

Shamans And Their Own Twelve Tengris

Cult Of The Twelve Tengris Traced

Monguor Shamans—wu Of Old China—shamans Of Central Asia

Cult Of The Twelve Tengris Specifically Shamanist

Monguor Shamans Enter The Taoist Guild


Vii. The Kurtain

The Type Of The Kurtain

By What Spirits Are Kurtains Possessed?

Authorization Of Tests Of The Kurtains

Tests Of The Kurtains Possessed By A Lamaist Deity

Viii. Practical Aspects Of The Religious Life Of The Monguors

The World Of Religion And Fear In Which The Monguors Live

Ix. Public Rites

Religious Activities In Regard To Hailstorms

Rite Of The White Tiger

The Rites Of The Taoists Against Hail

Strengthening Of The Old Mounds

More Precautions Against Hail

Lamas Invited To Recite Texts

Procession With The Sacred Books

The Goat Skin Rite

Rite On The Highest Mountain Of The Village

Call Of The Goddesses On The God Erh-lang

Old Custom Recalled

Offer Of Bones To The Spirits Of Hail

Last Regulations Of The Chief Of The Villages

Fighting The Hailstorms

Shamans And Statues Of The Temples


X. Various Public Rites

Public Rites On New Year's

Rite Of The Sacred Animal Of The Community

Shamanist Rites Of Spring


First Day

Invocation Of The Spirits

Entertainment Of The Spirits

Rites Of The Second Day

Possession By The White Tiger

Greeting Of The Goddess Of Joy

Leave-taking Of The Spirits

Nurturing Of The Gods Of The Temple

Fear Of Human Sacrifices

Cult Of The Mountains

Obligations Toward The Mountain Gods

Cult Of The Obo

The Five Great Obos In The Country

The Sick Obo Spirit Healed

Cult Of The Sacred Hill Of The Village


Rites Of Autumn

Thanksgiving Rite

Meaning Of The Rite

Xi. Private Rites Performed Without Representatives Of Religion

Sacred Animals In Private Families

Cult Of The Fire

Fire In The Open Air

Magical Power Of The Fire

The Hearth Fire

Fire And Fecundity

Fire As The Protector Of The Children

Cult Of The Hearth God

Rite At The End Of The Year

Rites During The Year

Image Of The Hearth God

Offering To Heaven And All The Spirits

The Family Offering After The Harvest

The Offering Of The Sheep

Calendar Of Religious Activities

Xii. Private Rites Performed With Representatives Of Religion

The Cult Of Family Deities

Spirits Honored In The Families—peculiar Concept

Most Spirits Are Taoist

Cult Of The Family Guardian Deity

Spirits Expelled From The Families

Spirits Expelled From The Villages

Shamans And Bewitchment

Rites Concerning The Guardian Spirits Of The Wealth Of The Family

Om Mani Days And Bumkhang

Fasting Rites Among The Monguors

Organization And Rules

Topics Of The Instructions

Impact Of The Fasting Rites Upon Monguor Society

Prodigality Of The Monguors Concerning Cult And Religion

Celebration Of The Cycle Of Age

General Rite

Lamaist Rite

Xiii. Death


The First Soul

The Second Soul

The Third Soul


Different Modes Of Disposing Of The Dead


Guests And The Maternal Uncle

Cremation 35

Mourning Customs

Ominous Deaths And The Abodes Of Evil Spirits

Women Who Die In Childbirth


Burying Of The Dead

Confucianist Burial Of Monguors

Incineration Of Lamas

Funeral Of The Shamans

Xiv. Cult Of Heaven

The Meaning Of The Formula “heaven And All The Spirits”

Behavior Of The Monguors Towards Heaven

Prayers And Offerings For Heaven

Cult Of Heaven Among The Turkic-mongols

Impact Of Foreign Religions In Central Asia

Impact Of Nestorianism Among The Mongols

Nestorianism Among The Monguors

Conclusion Of The Chapter

Xv. Religion And The Cohesion Of The Clan

Xvi. Conclusion

Policy Of China Toward Lamaism

Failure Of Lamaism To Transform The Monguor Society

Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information The main body of the Publication Information page contains all the metadata that HRAF holds for that document.

Author: Author's name as listed in Library of Congress records

Title: The Monguors of the Kansu-Tibetan frontier: Part II. their religious life

Published By: Original publisher Philadelphia, Pa.: American Philosophical Society. 1957. 164 p.

By line: Author's name as appearing in the actual publication [by] Louis M.J. Schram

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: Human Relations Area Files, 2005. Computer File

Culture: Culture name from the Outline of World Cultures (OWC) with the alphanumberic OWC identifier in parenthesis. Monguor (AE09)

Subjects: Document-level OCM identifiers given by the anthropology subject indexers at HRAF History (175); Public assistance (746); General character of religion (771); Spirits and gods (776); Prophets and ascetics (792); Religious denominations (795); Organized ceremonial (796);

Abstract: Brief abstract written by HRAF anthropologists who have done the subject indexing for the document This monograph is the second of three projected parts of the study of Monguors of the Kansu-Tibetan Frontier. Father Schram presents the religious life of the Monguor in both historical and a structural-functional frame work. The study covers: (1) the history of the introduction, growth, flourishing and crisis of Lamaism, and the role of Chinese emperors in the diffusion of Lamaism in Huang-chung, (2) the organization of Lamaseries, their role in the community, together with the study of shamanism and the various rites of Monguor religion cults, such as the cult of heaven and the cult of the dead. The influence of the Monguor Lama upon Lamaism and the life of Mongour community, and the social function of religion in Mongour life are discussed at the end of the study. This source is based on local chronicles, the Chinese histories and 'all available sources' as well as the experiences of Father Schram among the people between 1911 and 1922. The great variety of sects and cults, intensive borrowing between these sects and cults, and the complexity of the relationship between religious and nonreligious rites made it difficult for the author to present a clear description of the pattern of religious life. However, the subject has been extensively studied with remarkable objectivity.

Document Number: HRAF's in-house numbering system derived from the processing order of documents 4

Document ID: HRAF's unique document identifier. The first part is the OWC identifier and the second part is the document number in three digits. ae09-004

Document Type: May include journal articles, essays, collections of essays, monographs or chapters/parts of monographs. Monograph

Language: Language that the document is written in English

Note: Historical records compiled in the Ming and Qing Dynasties go back to the Mongol period. Most of Schram's discussion takes place in two time periods: i) the Ming and Qing Dynasties up to the Mongol Revolt of 1723 and ii) the period after the Revolt to the present (1948). Schram's discussion on Shamanism in the last half of the book is based on his 10-year period of ethnographic research. Includes bibliographical references

Field Date: The date the researcher conducted the fieldwork or archival research that produced the document 1911-1922

Evaluation: In this alphanumeric code, the first part designates the type of person writing the document, e.g. Ethnographer, Missionary, Archaeologist, Folklorist, Linguist, Indigene, and so on. The second part is a ranking done by HRAF anthropologists based on the strength of the source material on a scale of 1 to 5, as follows: 1 - poor; 2 - fair; 3 - good, useful data, but not uniformly excellent; 4 - excellent secondary data; 5 - excellent primary data Missionary-5

Analyst: The HRAF anthropologist who subject indexed the document and prepared other materials for the eHRAF culture/tradition collection. Hesung Chun Koh ; 1961

Coverage Date: The date or dates that the information in the document pertains to (often not the same as the field date). 1723-1948

Coverage Place: Location of the research culture or tradition (often a smaller unit such as a band, community, or archaeological site) Xining Prefecture, Qinghai Province, China

LCSH: Library of Congress Subject Headings Mongour (Chinese people)


Copy and paste a formatted citation or use one of the links below to export the citation to your chosen bibliographic manager.

Export a Citation