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Thread: The Yasa of Genghis Khan3652 days old

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    Default The Yasa of Genghis Khan

    http://www.coldsiberia.org/webdoc9.htm

    A labor of love as a person attempts to piece together various parts of the Yasa of Genghis Khan through multiple intermediaries.
    -----

    The Great Yasa of Chingis Khan was, among other things, a collection of Chingis Khan's maxims, regulations and instructions. At his acquisition of supreme power in 1206, he already had prepared his Great Yasa, which continued to be developed during his lifetime. The word "Yasa" means "order, decree." This has led to some confusion, since a "yasa" can also be a single rule. It must therefore be made clear that when we talk about the Great Yasa, we mean Chingis Khan's collected laws, rules, and words of wisdom.

    The work was written in the Uighur script that Chingis himself had introduced as the written language of the Mongols. It was written on scrolls that were bound in volumes, and kept in secret archives to which only the supreme ruler and his closest associates had access.

    I will regularly write here on the Great Yasa of Chingis Khan, which was not a mere book of laws. Naturally, it also was that, since it contained codification of ancient Mongol customs. The Yasa was however much more than this. It was the philosophical and spiritual content of the work that gave it its impact. This work was, in addition to being a guide in practical matters, also a magical work of great power, a talisman, and contained secret magical formulas as well as philosophical and ethical guidelines for the Mongol people. For this reason it was only a small, select group of people who was allowed to read it directly.

    When the descendants and successors of the Great Mongol became spiritually depraved, they no longer wanted to follow the Great Yasa. Indeed, they lacked the ability to commit themselves to something that demanded high morals and unswerving loyalty and dedication to lofty principles. Moreover, according to age-old Shamanistic belief, magical work in the hands of unskilled, depraved people brings disaster. As none of the descendants of Chingis possessed his moral and spiritual qualities, they could not cope with his legacy, also because its intrinsically collectivist ideology with rather radical social ideals was unpalatable to people who only concerned themselves with the pursuit of the material riches and short-term goals of this world. The Yasa was too much for them. Hence it is far from improbable that the Yasa was purposefully destroyed by Chingis' own descendants.

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    Siberian Breeze (2012-04-23)

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    Default

    “The Secret History of the Mongols”, by Cleaves, Francis Woodman is a seminal work in that regard and available in English. I found this to be an excellent source not only concerning the history of the Mongols, but also an easily accessible text. Another significant contributor to the endeavor of deciphering the history of the Mongols and the yasa is Igor de Rachewiltz.
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