Friday, December 10, 2010

Mongolian Motorcycle Nomads (video)

When one speaks of a "divine" mission, we hear extraterrestrial intereference in human affairs -- the introduction of technology and tactics and a directive to conquer for demigods to rule by proxy. Superpowers then retreat to walled cities.

Genghis Khan (BIO) once tore through the fertile grasslands of Asiatic animist and Buddhist nomads spread across an endless expanse of blankness between empires. The entire area was more shaman and animistic than the majority group in China but quite similar to the countless indigenous tribespeople related to Tibetans, Siberians, and Native Americans.

"He guaranteed freedom of religion, protecting the rights of Buddhists, Muslims, Christians, and Hindus alike. Genghis Khan himself worshipped the sky [ETs?]..."
Today Mongolian nomads ride motorcycles
Sisi Tang (AP)
CHIFENG, China – It's no longer about the armed warriors, Genghis Khan and the robed nomads prancing through lush greenery on horseback. In China's barely populated Inner Mongolian grasslands, what had defined Mongolian culture for outsiders have long been swapped for leather outfits, motorbikes, cell phones, and tourism.

Five hours outside Inner Mongolia's southeastern city of Chifeng and deep in the grasslands, I chanced upon a local couple riding a mule-pulled cart on a quiet road, heading toward their coal-heated yurt.

The old woman said she loves watching drama shows on TV, gesturing toward the dish propped up against her roof. On the freeway nearby, cars and buses seem to be the only other form of transportation, with horse-riding existing mostly for tourists.

The old storybook nomad life has dwindled, with most nomads now farming, living in compact brick huts, tending to tourists, or working in nearby cities. Desertification, too, is real and apparent... More>>

(Blacktreemedia) Award-winning Russian filmmaker Sergei Bodrov illuminates the life and legend of Genghis Khan in his stunning historical epic, MONGOL. Based on leading scholarly accounts and written by Bodrov and Arif Aliyev, MONGOL delves into the dramatic and harrowing early years of the ruler who was born as Temudgin in 1162. As it follows him from his perilous childhood to the battle that sealed his destiny, the film paints a multidimensional portrait of the future conqueror, revealing him not as the evil brute of hoary stereotype, but as an inspiring, fearless and visionary leader. Filmed in the very lands that gave birth to Genghis Khan, MONGOL transports us back to a distant and exotic period in world history, to a nomad's landscape of endless space, climatic extremes, and ever-present danger.

No comments: