Originally a shamanistic Shrine, but now turned into a Buddhist shrine, the Creepy Teepee is an “Ovoo” in Mongolian. It’s a shrine where the Mongolians pray to the spirits and their gods.
Creepy Teepee Mongolia consists of rocks or wooden piles around Mongolia. It has been worshipped by Mongolians for thousands of years and still is being worshipped. They have ceremonies for their worship, and they used to be three different types. They were;
- Offering dairy products and asking the spirit for good fortune.
- Offering blood from slaughtered animals.
- Making a fire near the ovoo (teepee/tipi) to purify the souls of people.
At the present, they only perform one of these, that being the first one. The foods they offer can be vodka, butter, milk, and sweets. When they reach the teepee, they put on a Buddhist ceremonial scarf. After that, they have to add more stones to the shrine while walking around the teepee three times in a clockwise direction.
There’s one more thing that they do. But, it’s more of prayer than a worship ceremony. When they travel, they’ll often ask for a good journey.
The Grand Tour – Mongolia
Being one of the largest landlocked countries in Central Asia with a population of only 3 million, it’s bordered by Russia and China. Half of the population (1.5 million) live in a single city. That city is also the capital of the country. The city is called Ulaanbaatar.
The other half pursue a nomadic lifestyle and live in traditional houses. Summer reigns in the country for most of the year, with it being sunny most of the time. It’s a place where the sun spills two hundred percent, a land of blue sky. But, when winter does come, it becomes extremely difficult for the residents.
The Grand Tour: Season 3, Episode 13 – Creepy Teepee:
In a special episode of a series called The Grand Tour, Richard Hammond and James May are dropped off in the wilderness of Mongolia with only a few days’ worths of food and are given several parts to help them assemble a vehicle so they can get back to civilization.
On their journey back to civilization, they come across Bactrian, two-humped camels. They gave them mare’s milk, called “Airag”, that’s produced in the summer. They also encounter an ovoo during their travels. Now, if you can’t carry out the full ceremony for a safe journey, you can just honk the horn of your vehicle. Although it is not preferred, it will still suffice.
Explore more about What is Ovoo?
An Interesting Fact About Mongolia:
The Mongolian people have a lot of horses, so much so that the number of horses in the country is more than the number of people there. A drink called “Arkhi” is a traditional Mongolian drink made from yak or sheep milk. The drink is a sort of vodka in Mongolia.
The Creepy Teepee Mongolia is an ovoo that people walk around in a clockwise manner to have a safe journey. It was mainly a Shamanistic shrine, but now it’s being worshipped by Buddhists. There used to be three worship ceremonies, but now, there’s only one.
Now, they only offer daily products to the shrine and ask for good health. The Grand Tour’s 13th episode of Season 3 was based on the journey back from the wilderness to civilization. The participants were Richard Hammond, James May, and Jeremey Clarkson. They encountered two-humped camels and an ovoo during their voyage back from the wilderness.
All in all, Mongolia is a great place to visit. The Mongolians are generally welcoming people, and it’s rather fascinating to visit an ovoo. There are many tourist attractions across the country, and it’s a beautiful country. The country is divided into two lifestyles.
One is a nomadic lifestyle, and the people live in traditional houses. The other half lives in the capital city of Mongolia. Now, the weather for most of the year remains warm, and the season is mainly summer. But, the winter is still really harsh and makes it hard for the residents to cope with.