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Title: Invocation, possession and rejuvenation in Upper Tibet : the beliefs, activities and lives of spirit-mediums residing in the Highest Land
Author: Bellezza, John Vincent
ISNI:       0000 0001 0893 7648
Awarding Body: University of Kent University of Kent
Current Institution: University of Kent
Date of Award: 2018
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This dissertation comprehensively examines the hereditary links, ritual practices and pantheon of indigenous deities on which the spirit-mediums of Upper Tibet rely. Known as lha-pa, dpa' bo and lhamo, these specialists in channeling the gods operate in the overlapping Stod and Byang-thang regions of western and midwestern Tibet. This work is based on in-depth interviews and the translation of a variety of Tibetan texts. It utilizes a diachronic model to explicate ethnohistorical dimensions as well as legendary and contemporary aspects of the spirit-mediums through both oral and literary sources. This work, drawing upon a wide range of ethnographic and textual materials to investigate the phenomenon of lha-bzhugs (spirit-possession) in Upper Tibet, analyses the way in which its historical and present-day characteristics are interrelated. Thus, the continuity of the tradition of spirit-mediumship and the way in which it has been conceived and preserved, is the underlying theme giving this work its narrative and analytical coherence.
Supervisor: Alexiades, Miguel ; Mair, Jonathan Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available