rGya nag skag bzlog: the Chinese Way of Deflecting Disaster or Deflecting Chinese Disasters

Neljor Tsering (EPHE)
Organisé par
25 septembre à 18h00
Inalco (salle à confirmer) et via Zoom

The rGya nag skag bzlog, “The Chinese ritual deflecting disasters”, is a very popular Tibetan daily folk ritual dedicated to the avoidance of disasters. Traditionally, it is regarded as coming from the Chinese, but was adopted in both the Tibetan Buddhist and the Bon traditions. By comparing the different versions of this ritual, the present paper introduces a lesser-known Tibetan concept of cataclysm upon which this ritual is founded—sKag or Keg, namely “disaster”. This term covers a wide range of catastrophes resulting mainly from the conflict in conceptual relationships. While the conflict can be either cyclic or oppositional, the relationships can pertain to astrological, social, moral, and cosmological orders, among which many are of Chinese origin, such as the five elements and the eight trigrams. The present paper shows how the Buddhist and the Bon traditions choose to incorporate these foreign elements in developing their own ritual narratives.