A Brief Biography of Urgunge Onon TEMUJIN ONON Urgunge, of the Onon clan of Daur Mongols was born on the eleventh day of the eleventh lunar month 1919 in a village in north-eastern Inner Mongolia. His people hunted and farmed in a remote area near the Manchurian border and had retained some ancient Mongolian customs and a spoken dialect long-since lost by the majority of Mongols. During his youth he enjoyed participating in the traditional Mongolian pursuits of wrestling, horse riding and hunting but also, almost mysteriously, acquired an intuitive understanding of shamanic rituals and practices which were still surviving in his native area at that time. He himself considered that shamanism had a profound inﬂuence on the Mongols at the time of Chinggis and was an important factor in their military and political success. It was this shamanism which continued to inﬂuence his personal philosophy throughout his adult life. As a young teenager he experienced the suffering caused by war and banditry which were endemic in Manchuria at that time and was himself captured and held hostage by bandits. Following his release his family were able to send him to a Japanese-sponsored boarding school – a rare
Inner Asia – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2000
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