Presenting tibet

By Mao Xi ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-03-13 08:55:02

Presenting tibet

Photographer Zheng Yi and his works on Tibetan religious beliefs, rituals and folk customs. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Once he was invited to a lama's home and enjoyed chatting over Tibetan butter tea. When he was about to leave, Zeng says, the lama pointed at his collection of gold bowls and priceless scriptures and told him: "You may take whatever you like." To a person from a materialistic urban milieu, it was a shock.

He then started to reflect on the significance of life and did not take a thing from the lama.

In the region, Zeng says he is often touched by people's devoutness and reverence toward the land, rivers, heaven and deities. He is also reminded of the spiritual poverty modern people suffer.

He says he often asks himself: How can we pursue a future culturally and spiritually?

While ritual sounds dispensable and insignificant to most urbanites, he says: "In an era when the gleam of real spirit and faith is often swallowed by the abyss of dollar and desire, the ceremonial concept of ritual brings many thoughts to my mind."

Behind ceremony and ritual, he says he finds an individual's, or the entire Tibetan people's, yearning for a rich and beautiful spiritual life, and their untiring efforts to pass on their cultural inheritance, and their devout faith in virtues.

In a sense, these rituals convey the cultural vitality and strength of a people. In his photographs, he says, he tries to convey this hidden truth.

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