Dates 5 Mar '13 to 20 Mar '13
Flexible? Yeah, sure
Est. Cost 1,000 - 10,000 USD (USD United States Dollars)
Type Travel Partners Wanted
Name Ethics and Etiquette in Tibet
Tibetan people are friendly and easy to get along with. However, Tibetans have different ways of behavior in many aspects due to their unique culture and religion. It’s good to have some knowledge about Tibetan customs, ethics and etiquette beforehand. And be sure to respect local customs and be polite.
IN DAILY LIEF
Make sure that you do not step on threshold when you enter a house or a tent.
When you call or address somebody by name, please add "la" after the name for politeness. It’s an equivalent of "Mr." or "Sir" and “madam”.
When you are asked to sit down, please cross your legs. Do not stretch your legs towards others.
When somebody presents you something, you should accept it by both hands. While presenting gift to others, hold the gift by both hands higher than your head.
When the host presents you a cup of wine, before you start sipping, you should dip your ring finger in the wine and flick the wine into the sky, in the air and to the ground to express your respect to the heaven, the earth and the ancestors respectively. After you take the first sip, the host would like to fill up the cup again and you will take another sip. If the host fills your cup with wine again, then you should bottom it up.
Tibetan people don't eat horse, donkey and dog meat and in some areas fish, too. So, please respect their dietary habit.
It’s not polite to clap your palms and spit behind the Tibetan people. Tibetan people stretch out their tongue to greet you. It's also a courtesy to put their hands palm to palm in front of the chest.
Eagles are the sacred birds of Tibetan people. You should not drive them away or injure them. On the outskirts, you should not drive or disturb the sheep or cows with green, red and yellow cloth strips on.
Don’t pay to take a photograph of someone, and don’t photograph someone if they don’t want you to. If you agree to send a photograph of someone, please follow through on this.
Dress responsibly. Short skirts and shorts are not a suitable option, especially at religious sites. Wearing shorts in Tibet (even when trekking) is akin to walking around with ‘TOURIST!’ tattooed on your forehead.
Since more and more tourists are going to Tibet, more and more Tibetan people get used of seeing the "Big Noses" (western people) with jeans, sun glasses and some of them with shorts, the above rules are not obeyed so strictly as before. But we still suggest you take the above advices and travel to behave well.
VISITING MONASTERIES & TEMPLES
Most monasteries and temples extend a warm welcome to foreign guests and in remote areas will often offer a place to stay for the night. Please maintain this good faith by observing the following courtesies:
Always circumambulate Buddhist monasteries and other religious objects clockwise, thus keeping shrines and chortens (stupas) to your right.
Don’t take prayer flags or mani (prayer) stones.
Refrain from taking photos during a prayer meeting. At other times always ask permission to take photos, especially when using a flash. The larger monasteries charge photography fees, though some monks will allow you to take a quick picture for free. If they won’t, there’s no point getting angry; you don’t know what pressures they may be under.
Don’t wear shorts or short skirts in a monastery.
Take your hat off when you go into a chapel (though there’s generally no need to remove your shoes).
Smoking inside the monasteries is not allowed. It’s also banned to touch the statues of Buddha and religious articles and take pictures of.
Be aware that women are generally not allowed in protector chapels (gonkhang); always ask before entering.
Ethics and Etiquette in Tibet
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