Tibetan and Himalayan Library - THL

THL Title Text
by John Vincent Bellezza
Edited by Geoffrey Barstow, Mickey Stockwell and Michael White
Tibetan & Himalayan Library
Published under the THL Digital Text License.

II.1. Stelae and accompanying structures: Funerary and non-funerary structures

Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring

Basic site data

  • Site name: Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring
  • English equivalent: Son of the MönMon Long-stone
  • Site number: C-169
  • Site typology: II.1a
  • Elevation: 4870 m
  • Administrative location (township): DungkarDung dkar
  • Administrative location (county): TsamdaRtsa mda’
  • Survey expedition: HTAE
  • Survey date: October 11, 2003
  • Contemporary usage: Cultic site.
  • Identifiable Buddhist constructions: Prayer flag mast.
  • Maps: UTRS V, HAS C2
  • View Place Dictionary Entry
  • View Sites Images

General site characteristics

Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring is located near the foot of MönbuMon bu; the mountain that is the territorial deity (yüllhaYul lha) of DungkarDung dkar village (situated 11 km to the west). MönbuMon bu, an outlier of the Ayi LaA yi la range, is distinguished from neighboring peaks by the rocky knob on its summit. The MönbuMon bu mountain is referred to as an ancestor (mes) by the residents of DungkarDung dkar, probably indicating a genealogical link with the ancient MönMon tribe. Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring is situated in the narrow valley that skirts the east side of Mount MönbuMon bu. The slim, dark blue-gray stele stands on fairly level dramagra ma-studded ground. This pillar of three irregular faces stands 2.5 m and has a basal girth of 1 m. manima ṇi mantras have been carved on two sides of the pillar. Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring is also draped in white offering scarves (khatakkha btags) and has been amply smeared with butter. A pile of stones, 1 m in height, has been erected around the base of the pillar. On this pile of stones there is a blue sheep horn (the horns of wild ungulates are often used as ritual offerings on cairns). In close proximity to Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring is a ruined complex of all-stone corbelled edifices (B-125).

Oral tradition

According to residents of DungkarDung dkar, Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring is an ancient pillar. It plays a role in rituals for the propitiation of Mount MönbuMon bu. The survival of this cult pillar can at least partially be attributed to the remote location of the site, which is far removed from the Buddhist monastic centers of GugéGu ge. On the third day of the third lunar month, a member of each of DungkarDung dkar village’s 15 households comes to Mönbu DoringMon bu rdo ring for a propitiation and bestowment ritual (lhasöllha gsol). At this time, new prayer flags are erected on a mast found located on a nearby hilltop and incense is burnt. The pillar is ornamented as well. A feast for the participants is also held at the site during the lhasöllha gsol.


Note Citation for Page

John Vincent Bellezza, (Charlottesville, VA: Tibetan & Himalayan Library, 2010), .

Bibliographic Citation

John Vincent Bellezza. . Charlottesville, VA: Tibetan & Himalayan Library, 2010.