1.Father Heaven – Spirit
2.Mother Earth – Physical Being
3.The Ancestors – Wisdom
The spiritual aspect of an individual’s nature is associated with Father Heaven, from whom originates windhorse, spiritual power, and blessing. From Mother Earth we draw the nurturance of our physical being, and from our connection with her alone can we continue to survive as human beings. From the ancestors we gain the wisdom, from the memories of our suns and ami souls, as well as from the guidance and assistance of the ancestral suld souls which reside in natural places, in ongons, and who are the helper spirits of shamans. Furthermore the individual must relate himself to being in the context of nature and society. There are three principles involved with this:
1. Know Oneself
2. The key relationship is mother and child
3. Nature is the teacher
These three principles are very powerful. How many of us truly know ourselves? This goes beyond knowing where we were born or what our names are. Knowing oneself is knowing one’s purpose is in life, free of delusions and the demands of other people who try to impose control. When a person knows their life purpose all other things in life become very balanced and clear. A life purpose is a touchstone, when confronted with a problem, a demand, or a major decision it is necessary to take one’s life purpose into consideration before making a decision. This will also inspire vision and wisdom in how to best apply oneself for the betterment of society and the world.
The key relationship of mother and child does not only mean the relationship between the individual and his or her birth mother, but also the relationship between humankind and Mother Earth. Mothers provide us with life, and so the earth is the origin of physical life as well. Practically no society in human history has ever condoned disrespect of mothers by their children. Why is it that human society has so wantonly abused Mother Earth and forgotten this fundamental connection between our life and the nurturing earth on which we all stand? As stated in the Buryat dallaga prayer, we all draw milk from the breast of Mother Earth, why should we poison our own milk? This thought, if truly understood and taken to heart, will transform an individual’s relationship with the environment. If this idea spreads, it can transform the human race’s relationship with our planet and improve our prospects for the future.
Why is nature a teacher? This may not be so apparent in the Western/European world since there has been an arbitrary separation between human society and nature. From the Mongolian perspective, however, there is no separation. Nature is a teacher because everything happens along natural processes, whether it is in the natural environment or in human society. Politics, social movements, social interaction, religion, mathematics, science, technology, and all other human creations are still all the products of natural processes. We do not “play God,” we have never been able to truly change any process of nature, only apply these processes in ways that are useful. Even this computer with which I wrote there words is powered by the sun, which has shone on the Sayan Mountains, melting the snow which flows into the Angara River and powers the dam that provides electricity for our city here in Siberia. The knowledge that I impart has been passed down by tradition, something that all sentient beings do. We are not so far away from our origins as we think. Only a few days living in the Mongolian steppe or in the Siberian forest will make that clear. If we do not learn from nature, whether on the level of subsistence, as native peoples do, or even in the most advanced scientific research, we will fail to understand our world and therefore waste our energies on mistakes, some of which may be quite costly. What is the lesson that is too often ignored? Technological society has chosen to ignore the effects of its harnessing of certain natural processes on the rest of nature. Nature is in a state of balance, for everything that is done to it there is a reaction, and some of these results may present a danger to the future of humankind if we do not pay more attention to them. In social context we must also look at the natural processes affecting human society, in a local as well as on the global level. This requires us to seriously address the problems of poverty and overpopulation; it is well known that when this occurs in animal communities it ultimately leads to hardship, disorder, and death