JOURNAL - OCT - Milk Of The Gods
Milk Of The Gods
Life in Tibet revolves around the yak, the long-haired beast of burden which the nomadic people of the Himalayan plateau have herded for over two thousand years.
Tibetans feast on their meat, set fires with their dung, and cherish the precious milk of the female ‘dri’, which is whipped into creamy yoghurt and aged into rock-hard cheese.
In ornate ‘mdong-mo’, the fat-filled liquid is laboriously churned into butter, the key ingredient in the national beverage, butter tea, a pungent concoction made with salt and soda and consumed in copious quantities to provide hydration and energy in the punishing high altitude.
A vital part of the spiritual lives of Tibetan Buddhists, yak butter is artfully sculpted for adorning temples and monastery altars during times of celebration, while sacred lamps of clarified oil are lit daily by pilgrims to symbolise the illumination of wisdom during the quest for enlightenment.