Tongkanathang, Rinzentangpang, Bamchang and Dukti, District Trashi Yantse, Bhutan
Project: Bönism, Traditional Healing, and the Environment
Indigenous practices of Bönism are unofficially banned in Bhutan, and appear to be destined for extinction. Yet for now, at least, people in at least some parts of Bhutan continue to retain knowledge of traditional Bön practices. In this project, Tashi Tshewang – a native speaker of the Dakpa language – spent 3 months audio-visually documenting Indigenous healing practices and learning about their relationship with the local environment. In addition, he has collected a number of vernacular autobiographical stories of village people, and has made use of incidental opportunities to audio-visually document traditional preparations of wild mushrooms and lichens for consumption as food, as well as traditional hillside grain cultivation. Images of local religious sites and practices complement Tashi Tshewang’s collection, which is currently being transcribed and translated using ELAN software.