Native to Central Asia, Tengrism is an indigenous religion system that worships Tengri as the main deity, frequently symbolized by the vast blue sky. The Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, Tuvans, Buryats, and other Turkic and Mongolic ethnic groups are among those who follow this long-standing spiritual tradition. Tengrism places a strong emphasis on living in harmony with the natural environment, showing respect for one’s ancestors, and adopting an all-encompassing perspective that views everything as interrelated. 

According to Tengrist creation myths, life emerges when the earth goddess Umai and the sky deity Tengri first unite. After splitting from Umai, Tengri creates order, which makes it possible for life to flourish on Earth, which he then populates with a variety of species. The idea that all living things are endowed with a soul or spirit highlights how intertwined everything is. Life span is determined by the balance between Tengri, Umai, and other gods, notably the underworld deity Erlik. The celestial, earthly, and underworld realms are connected by the tree of life, which is a common emblem for this cosmic relationship. The emphasis on preserving harmony and balance in the universe, with humans entrusted as stewards to preserve the natural order and respect the interconnectedness of all living things, is central to Tengrist mythology. 

Ancient societies practiced sacrificial offerings to honor the Sky God, with common animals such as rams and stallions symbolizing reverence. They aimed to abolish brutal practices like human sacrifice, emphasizing compassion. Tengri’s presence infused daily life, observed through rituals and household offerings, reflecting the interconnectedness between the mundane and the divine. Rain-making rituals and appeals to Tengri during emergencies aimed to restore balance and reaffirm one’s connection with their spiritual protector. 

Tengrism emphasizes harmony and balance in all facets of existence, encouraging respect for the natural world, life, and ancestors’ traditions. The acceptance of change and the understanding of the interconnectedness of all beings, which promotes empathy and cooperation, are fundamental to its ethics. It inspires people to live moral lives that value cultural diversity, pursue spiritual development, and prioritize overall well-being. 

Mongolian art and architecture, which incorporate symbols reaffirming the strong relationship between humans and the natural world, are intricately intertwined with the spiritual history of Tengrism. Of them, the World Tree is a representation of the cosmic relationship between the celestial and terrestrial realms according to Tengrist religion. Nine leaves are used to symbolize it, representing the oneness of all existence in all nine directions of the world. It serves as a perpetual reminder of Tengri’s divine guidance throughout Mongolian life. In addition, Tengrism’s adaptability is demonstrated by the way Mongolian art combines aspects of many religious and cultural traditions. Mongolian art is adorned with sacred animals, such as sheep, cows, horses, and deer, each of which represents a certain deity and embodies the qualities and characteristics associated with the divine figures of Tengrism. These representations serve as both a tribute to nature and a visual reminder of Tengrism’s ongoing spiritual significance in Mongolian society. 

Tengri: The chief sky god represents the eternal blue sky and creator of the universe. 

Umai: Goddess of fertility and mother earth, revered for her role in nurturing life and maintaining balance. 

Erlik: God of the underworld associated with death, darkness, and the afterlife. 

Ulgen: Deity of wisdom and prosperity often serves as a mediator between humans and the divine. 

Kaira: Deity of fate and fortune determines the destinies of individuals and communities. 

Yer-Sub: Goddess of the earth, serves as a messenger for Tengri and Umai, and associated with fertility and abundance. 

Ersö: Protective spirits or helpers assist individuals in various aspects of life. 

Ak Ana: Goddess of creation and water embodies the primordial creative force. 

Ay Ata: Moon God resides in the celestial realm alongside Gun Ana, symbolizing the cyclical nature of time and existence 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *