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Tibet Oral History Project: Interview with Dolma (alias) on 4/9/2015

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Published on Mar 31, 2018

Interviewee requested that her face not be revealed.

** The interpreter's English translation provided during this interview is potentially incomplete and/or inaccurate. If you are not fluent in Tibetan, please refer to the interview transcript for the complete and correct English translation. Read the interview transcript in English at http://tibetoralhistory.org/Interview...

** This interview about life in Tibet was conducted by the Tibet Oral History Project. This non-profit organization aims to preserve the history and culture of the Tibetan people by interviewing elderly Tibetan refugees about life in Tibet before and after the Chinese invasion. Learn more at http://www.TibetOralHistory.org.

** Interview Summary: Dolma was born to a nomadic family in Utsang Province. They engaged in raising animals like yaks, dri 'female yaks' and sheep. She describes the various nomadic activities such as milking, churning curd and making cheese and butter. These were sold to the farmers in exchange for grains that the nomads made into tsampa 'flour made from roasted barley.' She talks about the difficulties they faced during rainy season in the mountains due to the lack of proper clothing to protect them from the cold and rain. Dolma recalls how she was given in marriage to a farmer's family. She faced many problems due to the sudden change in her lifestyle from a nomad to a farmer. She was praised for her skills at cooking and weaving, but struggled to harvest the grain on the farm. She had two sons who both died at a young age and eventually separated from her husband. She believes they were a poor match based on their individual birth signs and elements. Dolma gives her opinion on arranged marriages that happened during her days in Tibet and today's love marriages. While living in Nepal she has received Buddhist teachings from a learned lama that has helped transform her mind. She describes her beliefs in one's destiny, the meaning of the Buddha dharma and the various spiritual activities she follows.

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