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In: The Many Faces of King Gesar
Author: Charles Ramble

Abstract

Divination reveals the visible component of an otherwise unseen configuration of forces that might affect our lives for better or for worse. However, in addition to divinatory techniques, there are signs all around us that do not need to be elicited by special methods, if only we knew how to recognize and interpret them. The behavior of wild animals at certain locations and at certain times of day is a particularly good way of discerning what (usually something unpleasant) is due to happen. Dreams, too, offer a range of sights, sounds and other sensations that portend what might befall us in this life and the next. This article presents a general overview of the associations between signs and meanings listed in a number of Buddhist and Bonpo ritual and oneiromantic texts. On the basis of these texts it undertakes a tentative investigation of the way in which signs seem to be understood: in addition to being indicators of what is to come (or what has been), they are sometimes represented as the actual causes. And while it is clear that measures can be taken to offset the effects of what the signs portend, there are suggestions that it is also possible to influence the signs themselves before they manifest.

In: Glimpses of Tibetan Divination
Editor: Charles Ramble
Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, held in 2003.

12. Buddhism Beyond the Monastery, Edited by Sarah Jacoby and Antonio Terrone
11. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 11: Tibetan Modernities, Edited by Robert Barnett and Ronald Schwartz
10. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 10: Soundings in Tibetan Medicine, Edited by Mona Schrempf
9.Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 9: The Mongolia-Tibet Interface, Edited by Uradyn E. Bulag and Hildegard G.M. Diemberger
8. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 8: Discoveries in Western Tibet and the Western Himalayas, Edited by Amy Heller and Giacomella Orofino
7.Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 7: Text, Image and Song in Transdisciplinary Dialogue, Edited by Deborah Klimburg-Salter, Kurt Tropper and Christian Jahoda
6. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 6: Contemporary Tibetan Literary Studies, Edited by Steven J. Venturino
5. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 5: Bhutan, Edited by John A. Ardussi and Françoise Pommaret
4.Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 4: Tibetan Buddhist Literature and Praxis, Edited by Ronald M. Davidson and Christian K. Wedemeyer
3. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 3: Power, Politics, and the Reinvention of Tradition, Edited by Bryan J. Cuevas and Kurtis R. Schaeffer
2. Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 2: Tibetan Borderlands, Edited by P. Christiaan Klieger
1.Proceedings of the Tenth Seminar of the IATS, 2003, Volume 1: Medieval Tibeto-Burman Languages II, Edited by Christopher I. Beckwith
In: The Mardzong Manuscripts
In: The Mardzong Manuscripts
Author: Charles Ramble

Abstract

Divination reveals the visible component of an otherwise unseen configuration of forces that might affect our lives for better or for worse. However, in addition to divinatory techniques, there are signs all around us that do not need to be elicited by special methods, if only we knew how to recognize and interpret them. The behavior of wild animals at certain locations and at certain times of day is a particularly good way of discerning what (usually something unpleasant) is due to happen. Dreams, too, offer a range of sights, sounds and other sensations that portend what might befall us in this life and the next. This article presents a general overview of the associations between signs and meanings listed in a number of Buddhist and Bonpo ritual and oneiromantic texts. On the basis of these texts it undertakes a tentative investigation of the way in which signs seem to be understood: in addition to being indicators of what is to come (or what has been), they are sometimes represented as the actual causes. And while it is clear that measures can be taken to offset the effects of what the signs portend, there are suggestions that it is also possible to influence the signs themselves before they manifest.

In: Glimpses of Tibetan Divination
In: Proceedings of the Ninth Seminar of the IATS, 2000. Volume 9: Territory and Identity in Tibet and the Himalayas
In: The Mardzong Manuscripts