The Words and World of Ge bcags Nunnery, by Elizabeth McDougal

Hardcover, 270 pages, Leiden 2024, new

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The Words and World of Ge bcags Nunnery
Tantric Meditation in Context
by Elizabeth McDougal

Ge bcags (Gebchak) dgon pa, founded in 1892 in Nang chen, Khams
(Qinghai Province, PRC), is still active today with around 250 nuns
practising intensive Vajrayāna rituals, yogas and meditation.
The nuns’ knowledge goal is embodied, nonconceptual awareness, yet
they spend many hours daily reading texts as part of their training. By
investigating the whole context of the nuns’ lifeworld and ways of
learning, this ethnography questions the role of reading in Ge bcags’
tacit knowledge tradition. At a time when Tibetan learning practices are
quickly modernising, this book demonstrates a Buddhist tradition
whose textual knowledge is not exactly literal, but cultivated through
continuous, whole person learning.

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