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Newspaper Page Text
QUAINT 1CUST0MS OF WORLD'SQUEER PEOPLE
PRAYER WITHOUT QEASItfQ IN TIBET
Praying water wheels in Tibet.
The folks wfto live- in the mys
terio"usrcountry of Tibet, in Central
Asia are the most prayerful people
in the world. They pray, and pray
without ceasing. Ypu.retire at night,
you rise" early in the morning, but
long after you are asleep and long
before the sun has risen the voice of
, prayer has filled the air.
They pray everywhere, utilize
everything movable and immovable
to help in their devotions. The wind
waves their prayer flags in the air
and the streams revolve their cum
bersome prayer wheels such as those
shown in the illustration.
Entrances to villages are strewn
with countless paper prayers.
Streamers of prayers are hung from
tree to tree and from house to house.
Bridges are pasted with them. Rocks
and cliffs are chiseled with prayers.
Praying at leisure, the ordinary
spiritual Tibetan will get through
four hundred words a minute, but at
a push he can do much more.
In his praying wheels, with the aid
of a fairly rapid stream,, he will ac
complish in. a very short 'time what
would perhaps be a burden to him
personally. Little strips of paper
bearing orthodox prayers are affixed
to the wheels, and at once they are
revolved again and again by the
In the ordinary Tibetan village the
Buddhist priestly population may be
divided into three classes. First, the
lama (or ordained priest) who has
made the long journey to Llassa and
there received ordination irom the
Dalai-Lama. Second, the Draba, an
unordained priest who still lives in
hope of going to Llassa. And thirdv
the -Amcho, a private lama who has
neither desire nor opportunity of ever
seeing the sacred city. '
The lama is a respectable member
of society, well housed and fed and
clad generally. He spends his time
almost wholly in the temple, accept-