PF has an excellent post about the Buryats, a Mongol people near Lake Baikal in Siberia. There are links about Buryat history, the epic Geser (“the Iliad of Central Asia”), teaching in the Buryat capital, a Buryat summer festival, and much else, including a couple of Buryat stories; here’s one:

Once upon a time a Buddhist lama was traveling in the steppe as a “badarch,” a holy man that brings blessings to the nomad families in exchange for food and lodging. It was close to sunset, and he came upon a lone ger and some livestock. When he approached the ger a young woman came out to greet him. She was the only person living there.
When he requested hospitality she said he could stay the night only under one condition. He had to choose to do one of three things. He could drink alcohol, sleep with her, or sacrifice a goat. The last was taboo for lamas since only shamans sacrifice goats. Since all three choices were in some degree sinful, he had a difficult decision. He decided that drinking alcohol would be the least harmful.
He drank the alcohol, and while he was drunk he killed the goat. When he woke up the next morning he was in bed with his hostess. He then learned that drinking alcohol is a small sin but it can easily make a man do bad things under its influence.


  1. Thanks, but that’s not Moss, that’s me.

  2. I added another little story at the bottom.
    PS You have a marvelous site, which I check obsessionally.

  3. Sorry, I checked the site for “about me” or the like and found nothing, so I just assumed it was one of Moss’s pages. I’ll correct the attribution when I have the time. Thanks for the kind words!

  4. (Suddenly that “about me” page editor I’ve been meaning to write for people whose blogs I host starts to seem more important than I thought it was.)

  5. Get cracking!

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