Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 91.djvu/663

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Popular Science Monthly


��His Drum Is Made of Human Skin and His Trumpet of a Thighbone

I AM A, meaning "a su- _^ perior one," is the name given by the Chinese and foreigners generally to the Buddhist monastic order in Tibet. In Tibet, however, the word is reserved for the monks who have not only taken the highest theological degrees, but who have led saintly lives and become famous for knowledge. Lamaism is a form of Bud- dhism practiced by the peo- ple of Tibet. In lamaism, magic and mysticism play such a commanding part that its relation to Buddhism can be recognized only with difficulty. The monks of Tibet are believers in the efficacy of prayer. They use a rosary such as that worn by the lama in the photograph. The rosaries are made of various kinds of wood, shell, sections of human skulls, and various kinds of odd seeds.

The drum and small trumpet shown in this picture are used in ceremonies connected with the exorcising of evil spirits. The drum is usually made by joining at the tops the domes of two human skulls, the drumhead being made of human skin. The beaters are suspended from cords and the drum is sounded by smartly rapping the beaters with the hand against the drumhead. The small trumpet is made from a human thighbone.

Among the most important objects used by the lama in church ceremonies is the vajra, or thunder- bolt, which is the small metal object at the left elbow of the lama in the photo- graph. The Napa- lese scriptures say that a contest once occurred between Buddha and Indra, in which the latter was defeated, and had wrested from him his chief and peculiar instrument

����of power, the vajra, or thunderbolt, which was appropriated as a trophy by the victor, and has ever since been adopted by his follow- ers. The usual dress of the lamas consists of a kilt reaching down to the ankles, a close-fitting waistcoat, and a shawl passed around the body leaving the right shoulder and arm uncovered. The head is shaved, and no head- covering is worn except in church ceremonies, when a high yellow hat with a fringe such as that shown in the photograph, is worn. ■

The Favorite Pocket-

Knife of the Jackies.

It Is a Century Old

OCCASIONALLY we come across some article of manu- facture which has been im- proved upon year after year, only to return again to its origi- nal state as the most desirable. This is true of the pocket-knife. You will find it in all de- grees of perfection and ornamentation, but the style most approved at the present moment is that of the old navy knife — in- vented no one knows how long ago.

This knife is shown in the accompanying illustrations. It is the instant action, drop- out type, and is made in two styles, either of which the Jackie prefers above all modern pull-out and push-button types. The blade simply slides in a groove so that it is opened by the same movement which jerks it out of the pocket. When it has been fouled from long usage, the entire blade can be taken out and cleaned. The jackie prizes its simplicity when he is up aloft, with only one hand free, and when his fingers are stiff and numb. At such times any other kind would be useless.

��The lama with his ceremonial outfit which he uses in exorcising evil spirits

��Two types of old-fashioned knives which are more popular with the sailors than any modern specimens

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