Charles Ramble is Directeur d’études (Professor of Tibetan History and Philology) at the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris, a position he has held since 2009, and a member of East Asian Civilisations Research Centre (CRCAO, UMR 8155, Paris, France, http://www.crcao.fr/). From 2000 to 2010 he was the Lecturer in Tibetan and Himalayan Studies at the University of Oxford, where he continues to hold a position as University Research Lecturer. His publications include The Navel of the Demoness: Tibetan Buddhism and Civil Religion in Highland Nepal (2008), and several volumes in a series entitled Tibetan Sources for a Social History of Mustang (2008, 2016, 2017). His research interests include Tibetan social history, Bon, biographical writing, and Tibetan ritual literature and performance.
His contribution to the ERC TibArmy project will be twofold. First, he will examine little-studied texts related to the cult of war gods in the Bon religion. These include prescriptions for the construction of shrines, known as bya rdang, for the propitiation of these gods, and also the cults surrounding the divinities themselves, viz. sgra bla/dgra lha, wer ma, thug ka and shugs mgon. Secondly, he will compare a selection of Buddhist and Bonpo works, notably treatises by Ju Mi pham and dPal sprul (both 19th century) and the chapter on statecraft in the 14th-century gZi brjid, to explore the strikingly different attitudes of clerical Tibetan authors towards the necessity of state violence.
Publications related to the project
Ramble, Charles, 2006, Sacral kings and divine sovereigns: principles of Tibetan monarchy in theory and practice. In D. Sneath (ed.) Power, Place and the Subject in Inner Asia. Bellingham/Cambridge: Western Washington University.
——— 2002a, The Victory Song of Porong. In K. Buffetrille and H. Diemberger (eds), Territory and Identity in Tibet and the Himalayas. Leiden: Brill.