The period of the revolutionary crisis and Civil war strongly polarized Russian society. The Buriat Buddhists who constituted the majority of the Buddhist population of the former Russian Empire didn’t stay away from the revolutionary events. The secular segment of the Buriat society viewed the collapse of the monarchy as the unfolding opportunity to get rid of the colonial legacy, including discrimination of their religion. However, already in 1918 the deviation of the positions of clerical and secular segments of the Buriat society became obvious. If the Buriat nationalists remained hostile to the idea of Restoration, the official Buddhist circles supported admiral Kolchak, whereas a part of rank-and-file lamas consolidated around the idea of Buddhist theocracy. After the Soviet regime firmly established in Trans-Baikal, a part of the Buddhist monks, the Buddhist renovationists under leadership of Agvan Dorzhiev, attempted to come to terms with the Bolsheviks. These attempts ended in the total defeat of the organized Buddhist community by the late 1930s.
|Translated title of the contribution
|Sangha in the Age of Degeneration. Responses of the Russian Buddhists to the Russian Revolution and Civil War
|State, Religion and Church
|Published - 2019