Local Customs is a must read before starting your Tibet trip. It provides you with the complete information about the various festivals, the details about the religious ceremonyas well as the interesting etiquettes and mysterious taboos in Tibet.
Scattered sparsely on the vast Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the possibilities for Tibetans getting together were relatively slim. As festivals provide these kinds of opportunity, in their long history many festivals have evolved and have gained great popularity among Tibetans.
The Tibetan Calendar, unlike the Chinese Lunar Calendar or International Solar Calendar, is the unique traditional astronomic calculation method of Tibet. It is a rather accurate science that combines the primitive calendar of Tibet and those of the Indians and the Han people.
Tibet is a religious and mysterious land with all year-round snow, sky-towering mountains and star-stubbed lakes. With all these as the stage and witnesses, Tibetan marriage feels more sacred and impressive for foreigners.
The primitive religious ceremony focuses mainly on sacrifices, comprised of three kinds of activities: the burning of aromatic plants, blood sacrifices and dances. All three of these activities are considered indispensable on important occasions, but otherwise dancing is generally omitted.
Tibetan burial customs are based on Buddhist belief in reincarnation. Tibetans are not afraid of death. They believe that death does not terminate a life, but indicates rebirth. They face death with calm. Their family members and relatives do not grieve.
This may sound gruesome and horrible to many of us, but sky burial is adopted by almost all residents after their deaths. Having been misunderstood for some time, sky burial made Tibetan culture even more mysterious.
Tibetans are exceedingly courteous and have rules governing their relationships. There are many ceremonies during meeting and making greetings.
Tibetan practice what is known as 'Sky Burials' are very private ceremonies where the family and close loved ones of the deceased pay their last respects.