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New book by a Tuvan scholar about spiritual-cultural ties of Eurasian nomadism

New book by a Tuvan scholar about spiritual-cultural ties of Eurasian nomadismMoscow publishing house "MOBY Publishing" released a book by Doctor of Historical Sciences, Professor of TuvGU, Nikolai Abayev 'Influence of Tengrianism on ecologic culture and ethnogenesis of Turko-Mongol people of Altai-Baikal region".

The book is meant for all who are interested in the history of culture and religion of Turko-Mongol people of Central Asia and Sayan-Altai. New research about spiritual-cultural foundations of Eurasian nomadism is written in a literary language that is sufficiently accessible, and will be interesting not just to scholars specializing in the area of nomadic cultures and comparative religion, but to a wide spectrum of general readers as well.

The monograph discusses philosophic-methodological aspects of study of Tengrian civilization in the light of  the theory of  auto-organization and social synergetics, it investigates problems of influence of Tengrianism on ethno-culturogenesis of Turko-Mongol people of Central Asia and Sayan-Altai region,  on formation and evolution of  ecological culture in "nomadic" civilization.

The book pays special attention to the influence of archaic faiths  and cults of Turko-Mongol people of Inner Asia, as well as Tengrianism and Buddhism on ecological culture in nomadic civilization. The author strives, first and foremost, to show that Tengrian civilization is not only and not simply a certain economic-cultural system, as much as a spiritual phenomenon with the ideal of almost Taoist "pilgrimage" in an infinite universe, a certain freedom of spirit, which is expressed also in Cossacks, who are in an obvious way connected with this phenomenon of Eurasian civilization.

"It is said about all the world civilizations that the determining role in their formation was played by this or that world religion, or national religion (Buddhist civilization, Confucian, Moslem, Christian civilization, etc.),  but Tengrianism, which has been the determining factor in the development of the central nomadic part of Eurasia much longer than Islam, Christianity and Buddhism, has until recently been refused recognition of its status as a separate civilization, even though it was precisely from it, as I successfully proved, that many civilizational cultures of Eurasian megacontinent originated," - as Nikolai Abayev stated in an exclusive interview to the correspondent of IA "TuvaOnline".


In his opinion, the terms "nomad" and "nomadic" civilization is a misunderstood, rough translation of Greek "nomad", which literally means "herder".  A herder does not necessarily have to wander around, he is simply more free in his movements,  but, at the same time, Central Asia nomads are very much attached to their native land, their sacred mountains, which is a characteristic trait of Tengrianism as well as a higher level of social auto-organization, self-regulation and spirituality of a cosmic character, just like in Taoism and Zen Buddhism. At the same time, Turko-Mongols, who right away developed a specific civilization of imperial format of government in combination with confederate forms of  social self-organization  (federations of tribes, clans, lineages, etc.), developed both the world religion and the imperial form of government almost simultaneously, while preserving more archaic sociocultural traditions, including elements of original "shamanism" to which the Eurocentrists ascribe too much significance, at the same time degrading Tengrian ethnoses to the status of "minorities" of Siberia and Far East, who, until this New Age, really were in the original condition.

As the chief editor, the head of  Russian representative Office of Center of Traditional Taoist Teachings (USA), Evgeniy Tsukerman notes, the author's conclusions, in particular, explain the astonishing parallels in philosophic-methodological and metaphysical foundations between contemporary synergetic paradigm, Taoism, Zen Buddhism and the military Tengrian religion of Genghis-Khan, who, as is well known, was seriously interested in Taoism and also read the original Taoist texts, but his grandsons established Tibetan Buddhism as the state religion. Approximately similar paradigm of auto-organization and self-regulation went into the foundations of samurai Zen Buddhism (with admixture of Shinto, which, at the same time, is a Japanese variant of  precisely this very same Eurasian Tengrianism). And the book is full of such astonishing parallels and coincidences which bear witness to the fact that in both our ethno-genetic and spiritual roots, "all of us are Siberians from Mt. Sumeru".

In his response to this book, one of reviewers, the head of philosophy department of TGU, Vladimir Feldman, writes: "The metaphysical aspect of Tengrianism, in the author's presentation, is a discrete being of supra-natural spirituality, filled with tremendous creative energy and the potential of creating a reality of high quality, planting the seeds of potential future."  The great significance and heuristic value of the monograph under review was noted also by vice-director of TIGI of Government of RT, Marianna Kharunova: "The relevance of Nikolai Abayev's monograph is undeniable, and, unconditionally, it has important scholarly and practical meaning. This work presents an analysis of concrete sociocultural mechanisms of preservation of continuity of traditional society of Turko-Mongol people of Central and North-East parts of Eurasia."

Alexandr Filatenko, translated by Heda Jindrak
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