Tales from the Tibetan Operas
Eight Tibetan opera narratives express Buddhist concepts in myths and stories for the enjoyment and edification of readers of all ages.
Timeless Buddhist ideas come to life in the myths and stories in Tales from the Tibetan Operas. Poetically vibrant, these eight classic lhamo stories have continued to delight and edify Tibetan audiences of all backgrounds, from village children to learned scholar-monks and Dalai Lamas. Western readers can now also get a glimpse into ancient Indian and Tibetan history and mythology through these cultural touchstones.
The operas revolve around the drives of the human condition: the desire for power, the irresistible seduction of attraction, thoughts of revenge, attachment to family, the fear of separation and pain, the wish to be free from oppression. On visual display are the human and nonhuman characters of history and folklore — kings, queens, conniving ministers, ordinary folk, yogis, monks, and powerful beings from other realms such as gods and nagas — engaged in plotting, kidnapping, fighting and death, journeys to faraway lands, separation, and reconciliation, often with a quest for seemingly impossible treasure. The suspenseful tales have many dramatic plot twists, but they all end in happiness, where the good achieve their goals and the bad receive their just desserts. The operas thus bring to the people the fundamental ethical laws of behavior and teachings of natural justice based on Buddhist doctrine.
The book features more than fifty gorgeous photos of the operas being performed in Tibet and India.